|Anna, the Prophetess, Luke 2:36-38|
- (Luke 1:39-55) Mary and her sister Elizabeth are the first two human voices to herald Jesus and the new covenant with Israel. They lead our response to the incarnation.
- (Matt 15:21-28, Mark 7:24-30) A woman is the only person who beats Jesus in an argument. He listens to her and she changes his mind with her words. No man ever obtains this result despite several attempts by scholarly men to debate Jesus.
- (Matt 26: 6-13) It is a woman who first acknowledges when Jesus is due to die and accepts this. Although the male disciples criticized her, remembering her public worship is to be a mark of the gospel for all time.
- (Math 28: 5-7) Jesus’ resurrection is first revealed to two women. They lead our response to the promise of new life.
- 1 Timothy 2:11-15 New International Version (NIV)
Paul of Tarsus, how dare you teach that women hold a special responsibility for the fallen nature of the world and carry any greater burden for their redemption than men? How dare you on this matter contradict what you have elsewhere preached, that the grace and grace alone of Christ (Romans 3 :21-31), not childbearing, not gender roles, not acting with propriety is what women will be saved through?
I don’t know what purpose these lies achieved for you. We can’t know. We only know that today these lies serve both idolatry and blasphemy in the church. We thank God that we are required to treat you as human, not a god, in your authority as a preacher. This is bad theology on many levels and it’s childish. Men must stop blaming Eve.
Let’s remember it was a male disciple who betrayed Christ, a male disciple who denied him, and men in authority who crucified him. Do we really want to tally up historical wrongs against God by gender here?
Then there is this passage:
Women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the law says.If they want to inquire about something, they should ask their own husbands at home; for it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church.
-1 Corinthians 14:34-35 New International Version (NIV)
You have forgotten or perhaps you never knew what Jesus had to say to Mary and Martha. ("Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10: 38- 42) But how have you forgotten something so central to your own gospel; It is better to be disgraced for God than concerned about the law? (Galatians 2:15) I hope God forgives you, Paul, and anyone else who makes your sin their own.
Let us pray for the forgiveness of those who argue for male only leadership in the church. Let us pray that God takes from them their appetite for sin, that we humbly recognize takes different forms in us all.