You sat in church Sunday. Your pastor didn’t preach on Male Headship. Your pastor didn’t tell you that you had to submit to your husband. Your pastor didn’t tell you that you could not ever be a deacon because you are a woman. Your pastor didn’t mention that you couldn’t be ordained a preacher in your church. Your pastor didn’t tell you that the men of the church had full fellowship in the church, but you do not.
He didn’t have to.
If you were sitting in a Southern Baptist church, the words are written in the church by-laws.
The church by-laws are the cold heart of the church. Each church uses its own words, but when the by-laws say that the qualifications of a deacon are found in 1 Timothy 3, your church is telling you these five things:
- Your husband is the head of his wife because the scriptures say “Now I want you to realize the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is man, and the head of Christ is God” – even though this scripture makes MAN DIVINE we use it against women. The scripture actually says “Now I want you to realize the head of every man is Christ (remember the illustration that I gave you about how the man is the head of the woman in the marriage) and the head of Christ is God.” Man is not divine. Only a Divine God can be head of a woman.
- You can’t be a deacon because you can’t be the husband of one wife – even though the scriptures mean that a deacon should not be married to more than one wife at a time (like the Jews, the Muslims, and many Mormons . ( 1 Timothy 3)
- Male Headship means that women must submit to their husbands – the husband becomes little gods since he is between a woman and God. Remember man is not divine. Submission makes a woman second-class. Men are never told by the church to submit.
- The Baptist Faith and Message 2000 adopted by the Southern Baptist Convention tells every church member that the office of pastor is limited to men. Even though it does not specify the office of deacon, there is not a SBC church that has a woman deacon that uses the Baptist Faith and Message 2000.
- Women do not have full fellowship in a Southern Baptist church because they are restricted against holding certain offices simply because they were born a woman.
Southern Baptist churches that are also affiliated with the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship generally have in their by-laws these restrictions against women.
Southern Baptist churches that have the Baptist Faith and Message 1963 as their guide generally have in their by-laws these restrictions against women.
Most women do not want to be a deacon, just as most men do not. Most women have never felt called to preach, just as most men have not.
I want to be able to walk into my church and not feel that my church holds it against me that I am a woman.