I heard it again last week. “I don’t want to hear a woman preach.” The person saying it was the daughter of a Baptist minister, and she had just given me a three-minute sermon on how good Jesus was and how we should live like Christ. It wasn’t that she thought a woman shouldn’t preach. She just didn’t want to hear a woman preach.
I know what I should have said, and you know what I should have said.
“What about your voice?”
You don’t want to hear a woman preach, but you have just ‘preached’ to me.
“I don’t want to hear a woman’s voice,” but you have listened to a woman’s voice as she sang a solo. You have sent a woman’s voice to the mission field to speak to those of a different color skin and language.
We are hypocrites.
Whenever your church says that you can’t preach, or be a deacon, they are telling you a whole lot more than just that they don’t want to hear a woman preach. Being a pastor and being a deacon are elevated church positions in most of our minds. But they don’t stop at that. Every church decides what it is going to allow and what it is not going to allow the women to do. They decide what voice they will allow a woman to use.
They tell you that the scriptures say “A woman must be silent, a woman can’t be a deacon because she can’t have a wife, and she can’t have authority over a man.”
So churches apply these scriptures in different ways. Some don’t want to hear a woman’s voice, but others will as long as it is put to music. Some don’t allow women to take up the offering, or pass out a visitor’s card, or the church attendance sheets, or go to a business meeting. Catholics allow women to serve the communion, but Baptists won’t. Baptists allow women to be on a pastor search committee, but Catholics don’t.
Some denominations don’t allow choirs because women would be singing from behind the pulpit. All women singers must face the pulpit and look neither to the right or left, or behind them.
They are all using the same scriptures. They have the nerve to tell us that these scriptures are as clear as they can be. (You have my permission to laugh here. I am.)
Dr. Mohler, Dr Grudem with your silly treatise on what women can do in the church, Dr Patterson, Dr Wright of the SBC, Dr Page of the SBC, Dr Piper, you men are crazy! What you are teaching is crazy. It doesn’t make a bit of sense!
Pastor, what you are teaching about women in the church is crazy, and hypocritical, and it doesn’t make a bit of sense.
Women, if you sit in a church that tells you that you can’t be a pastor because the Bible says so, and then that church won’t let you be seen taking up the offering, or passing out a visitor card, or singing when turning around to shake hands, then you are crazy!
These people, and those who do not speak up, perpetuate this trivilization of the scriptures. Does God really care which way you face when you sing?
Stand up! Speak up! After all, your church is your place of service, and as such, you have a right to speak out. Of course, they may tell you to ‘get out.’