Paige Patterson’s tears

Paige Patterson thought he had a chance at redeeming one Muslim and converting him to Christianity because, according to Patterson, the man was only a “cultural Muslim.” I doubt that that word belongs in the mindset of Muslims, but it found its way in the mindset of Dr Paige Patterson, president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.

So Paige violated his seminary’s policy and the Southern Baptist Convention’s charter when he allowed this young man into Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. And now it is under review, and Paige cries.

Laws and rules! He will break one rule when it suits him, but Paige will not break the most important law and rule of the Southern Baptist Convention. That law is one that Paige, himself, helped write. It is found in the Baptist Faith and Message 2000 which says that women cannot be “senior pastors.”

I always wondered about that word ‘senior’ before I realized that of course Baptists sometimes call women ‘Children’s Pastors,’ or better yet, ‘Women’s ministries pastor.’ So women can teach children and other women.

Paige looks to the Old Testament to find his excuse. Ezekiel was told by God that if he does not warn a sinful person from his wicked ways to save his life, the man’s blood will be on Ezekiel’s hands.

So Dr Paige Patterson, wrung his hands (well maybe not the wringing of hands, but certainly the shedding of a tear), and he said “I did the best I knew how.” A little dramatic, don’t you think?

He went on, “When I stand before God I will say, ‘God, I violated a policy, but I didn’t want to stand before you with blood on my hands.’”

But, Dr Patterson, I have a fear that you will stand before God and have to explain why you threw up road blocks in front of women whom God chose for the ministry.

Dr Patterson, you don’t have to find some obscure passage in Ezekiel to justify your violation of policy laws and rules. Look to Jesus! Look to Jesus to find where he violated rules and cultural policy when he told the Gentile woman that he had also come to save her and her people.

 “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me! My daughter is suffering terribly from demon-possession.”
Jesus did not answer a word. So his disciples came to him and urged him, “Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us.”
He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.”
The woman came and knelt before him. “Lord, help me!” she said.
He replied, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to their dogs.”
“Yes, Lord,” she said, “but even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their master’s tables.”

In other words, Dr. Patterson, women are eating the very same food that comes from the Master’s table that men are eating. And that food has nourished women the same way it has nourished men.

Rules and Laws! Violating a rule is not the problem. Violating God’s people (women) by refusing them full discipleship, is the problem. And Jesus himself violated his rule when he gave the Cannanite woman the “Good News” that he had come to save Gentiles also.

Paige, you are crying for violating one rule, but you still have blood on your hands. You have the blood on your hands of all the people who needed a preacher so they could hear the word, and you would not send a woman to preach to them. You have relegated women to second class by refusing them a seat at the Master’s table.

The harvest is great, but you will not send a woman. 


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Methodists turning complementarian?

Who would have thought it? Of course the seeds are there just waiting to germinate. And germinate they will.

According to the Houston Chronicle (June 1, 2014, Methodist churches face split over gay issues), they are about to split in two.

Whenever conservative Christians – Methodists or any other denomination – get together, women suffer.

Christian conservatism is a three-legged stool 1) gays; 2) women; 3) Bible inerrancy. These fundamentalists do not stand on two legs.

This split is about Bible inerrancy, ordaining gay clergy, and performing same-sex marriages. Gays will neither benefit nor suffer from this division into two Methodists groups, because they already can get married in many states whether the church allows it or not. It will be women who suffer, by a loss of churches willing to accept a woman pastor and by marriage seminars teaching male headship. This conservative (fundamentalist) group will begin with denouncing gays and same-sex marriages, and then you wil find they are rejecting women pastors.

Methodists have within their membership those who believe in male headship and this group will identify with those other denominations that teach against homosexuality and who also deny women equality to preach or pastor.

And then Methodists will be complementarian in their teaching and beliefs.

Openly gay pastors are a rarity, even among those who accept gay pastors. However, there are many gay pastors among evangelical fundamental Christians and Catholics. None of these denominations affirm gay pastors, but they are there. Conservative churches know they have gay pastors within their churches, but do not make an issue of it until something happens. Thus, there will continue to be male gay pastors in the split-off Methodist churches. But you can count on it, these split-off churches will not continue to accept female pastors.

I urge all Methodists to take action. Now is not the time to sit and wait.

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Street evangelist for women’s equality

I have a  new title. I am a street evangelist for women’s equality.  For some time I have been making reports from the street to my facebook friends at CBE Houston (Christians for Biblical Equality Houston Chapter.

No, I do not carry signs “The end is near!” or “Repent!”

What I do carry are postcards of my books and use those as an opening. Right now I am planning my second book signing and this means that I have to walk the streets advertising.

Report from the street evangelist. Went to the Lutheran Church yesterday and left my book signing information. Then went to the Presbyterian church today. A woman was standing at the door trying to figure out how to use the doorbell. She asked me if I worked there. I told her ‘no that I was just visiting to let them know about my book signing.’ Of course I had a book in my hand, and a leaflet about my book signing. The admin came to the door and let us both in. The woman wanted to purchase a mass prayer card for an ill friend. She is Catholic and thought the Presbyterians did that too. While the admin went to get the associate pastor, the lady asked me how much my book cost and got out her checkbook and wrote me a check for it. She is a nurse and will be working the 31st but she said maybe her daughter could come to my signing. for Women Equal-No Buts: Powered by the same Source.

women equal bumper sticker

I am a street evangelist. My bumper sticker says it all. I have decals on my back car windows.  I have literature lying on the back seat of my car. I am a modern day street evangelist, preaching a message that should not have to be preached in the 21st century.

Will you be a street evangelist too? The bumper sticker can be made for $10 at a sign place. You can download these magnets Larger and give to friends for their fridge.

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Lost girls

There is a report that Tony Campolo was preaching one day and said, “There are 120,000 children who die each day due to hunger” Campolo paused and nothing happened . “Bullshit!” There was a stunned silence. Then Campolo said, “You are shocked that I said “Bullshit” but when I said that 120,000 children died each day due to hunger, that did not move you.

We are stunned that 300 Nigerian girls were kidnapped.

But we are not stunned that around 3,000,000,000 girls and women are held hostage each day by religions that devalue them. These religions claim they honor and value women, but the restrictions placed these same women tell a different story.

Bullshit! Now I have your attention. What are you going to do about it?

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There is a movement for women’s equality

There is a movement for women’s equality.  God is working. Come to the table. Join in.

Listen to Jarrod at Pepperdine which is a Church of Christ seminary.  If you have little time, begin at 24.50 and listen to what he says. You will not be the same.

There is a movement for women’s equality. God is working. Will you join us?

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Something is about to happen!

The week after Resurrection Sunday finds non-liturgical churches back to normal. Easter has been put away. Women are silenced. Jesus is in heaven and it is business as usual. In liturgical churches, the week after Easter and leading up to the Ascension are very important times in the life of the church. Today let’s look back at the chain of events that brought us to this side of the cross and the expectation that it is not finished. Something is about to happen!

I am not sure what the Jews or the disciples expected of the Messiah, but it sure wasn’t this. Everybody is upset. One minute they are praising him, and the next minute they will be calling to crucify him.

His traveling companion and keeper of the funds is going to betray him.

Peter is going to deny him.

Around the table, they are trying to figure out which one of them Jesus is talking about when he made the startling announcement that one of them will betray him. They deny that they themselves would ever do such a thing.

Suddenly the argument escalates, and certain ones begin claiming that their love for Jesus is greater than the others.

“I’ll do anything for you! Even go to prison or be put to death!”

“You will deny me,” Jesus said.

In the garden of Gethsemane, he goes alone to pray, and when he returns to the place he had left his friends, he finds them all sleeping.

His acquaintances, and those women who accompanied him from Galilee, are standing there watching as he hangs on the cross. Then it is over. The women who had come with him out of Galilee are following as his body is taken away, and they see the tomb and how his body is being laid there. They go home and begin to prepare spices and perfumes.

The women arise at dawn on the first day of the week, and take their spices and walk to the tomb. They do not know how they are going to move the stone away from the opening, but they are going anyway.

The stone has been moved! What is happening? Suddenly two men appear! These dazzling men tell Mary Magdalene and Joanna, and Mary the mother of James, and the other women, that “He has risen!”

They run to tell the others, but what they are saying is not believed, because the words appear to them as nonsense, and because the words are coming from the mouth of women.

When the disciples finally see Jesus, He says to them, “It is written that the Christ should suffer and rise again from the dead the third day; and that repentance for forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in His name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. And behold, I am sending forth the promise of My Father upon you; but you are to stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high….” (Luke 22:45-24).

Forty days later, it is over. Jesus is going away again. They see him as he disappears into the sky (Acts 1:3).

They gather together and do what work needs to be done. The women cook, and they eat, and they take care of the kids, and they wait.

They wait.

Something is going to happen.

Like a rushing wind, it is upon them! It is here! They feel the Spirit! (Acts 2:1-21). Peter stands up and says, “This is what was spoken of through the prophet Joel: ‘And it shall be in the last days, God says, that I will pour forth of my spirit upon all mankind, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy.’”

What happened? What happened that both sons and daughters were to prophesy? And now it is only sons who can prophesy.

Something happened. The Son came out, and women were able to freely tell the Story. But something else happened also. The church put the Son under a cloud and silenced women. We wait.

(excerpt from my book Women Equal-No Buts: Powered by the same Source.

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From Easter to Easter

Where did Jesus go? Of course many people have wondered where Jesus was during the time his body lay in the tomb, but that is not what I am asking.

Where did Jesus go? He walked on the earth for many days after his resurrection. We do not know where he was when he was not with the disciples, but that is not what I am asking.

Where did Jesus go? A group of people saw him ascend into Heaven when he permanently left the earth in a physical body, but that is not what I am asking.

Where did Jesus go? On Easter Sunday in many congregations, people are met with, “He is risen!” Women turn to the men beside them and proclaim the risen Savior. Men turn to women and say the same thing. We are all in one accord, and, for a brief time, women open their mouths to tell men the good news. Waking up the morning after Easter, a hand is again clamped down upon women’s mouths. Of course nobody can stop women from telling anybody anything in their private lives, but the church can, and has, put a stop to what women can do, and what they can say, and how they can say it inside the church doors.

Where did Jesus go? I would like to ask pastors and congregations where Jesus goes when they block him from Easter to Easter. Because it was Jesus’ own words to the women at the tomb that women are now forbidden to tell. It is the actions of Jesus toward women that preachers will not acknowledge as being significant.

Where did Jesus go? Has he been bound between the pages of the Bible, as a story to be told—or is he Living in our Hearts Today as we sing so boldly each Easter?

If you wonder where Jesus went, join us as we speak out for women to be able to preach the message Jesus gave on Easter morning.

(from my new book “Women Equal-No Buts: Powered by the same Source.”)

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