Gender Roles Q & A – Part 1

Gender

 

 

Sunday 03/18/18 

Series: In Decency & Order Pt. 3

Message – Q&A: Gender Roles – Pt. 1

[powerpress]

Click HERE for Video

Click HERE for Outline

 

Q&A Gender Roles in the Church

The title may be a little misleading, in that you would search the scriptures in vain to find a gender rules which apply in our assemblies but no where else. What God says to His church has nothing to do with the building in which they meet. It has to do with His body, His bride regardless of where they may be – inside or outside of our gatherings.

As you may know, for the greatest portion of my ministry I was in support of women teaching both inside and outside of the church, which is why I had no difficulty submitting to a female “pastor” for nearly 20 years. It wasn’t until I was confronted with a question regarding the validity of the major role Pastors play in the modern church that I ever dove into the subject for myself and when I did…well, it changed my world, and the world of our church. I am gratified to say that we lost no one in our congregation due to this change and even our former  “pastor” is still in attendance and is being blessed. God be praised!

So when we embarked on this new series about “Equipping the Saints“, it was not with the intention of going back over this topic. It simply became something to pull back out and have some open discussion about when we reached the later portion of 1 Cor. 14 which addresses the role of women in the church.

The last time I specifically taught on this subject was following our change in leadership back in 2010 and I taught specifically and in some depth concerning it beginning in Dec. 5, 2010 – March 27, 2011 Sunday messages only. That’s 4 months of teaching regarding the topic of genders in the Bible and that was far from an exhaustive study! Needless to say, the Bible has quite a bit to teach in regard to this very important topic, which has become all the more important in our day. If the world, under the influence of the devil is RUNNING headlong into a worldview where there are NO gender lines or distinction whatsoever, even to the point of criminalizing the acknowledgment of these roles – EVERY Christian in the world should immediately realize that it is because they hate God and His Word, will and ways. This should also have the effect of causing Christians everywhere to dive into the scriptures with hearts that are open and ready to obey whatever their Lord says in regard to this issue.

As for our session today, the floor was wide open to any question regarding women (or men) and what the Bible teaches in regard to gender roles & distinctions. As such, some of the following questions are immediately on point with 1 Cor. 14, and others will seem way off in left field. That was intentional.

Also, we were privileged to play two videos from the ministry of Revive our Hearts which beautifully illustrates Biblical womanhood. The topic they addressed was dealt with in our service, but was edited out. It will be re-addressed in our next messages. Living Grace Fellowship would like to thank the ministry of Revive our Hearts for giving us written permission to retain the audio of their videos as played in our service and for allowing us to post their videos here on our site. (Links to these videos are provided at the end of the post)

Below are the questions AS they occurred in the service. I took the time to elaborate a little further here in writing than I did for time’s sake in the service. So if you follow along with the recording you may wish to pause it between questions to read further on each topic.

I hope this “mini series within a series” will be a blessing to many, and know that with the possible exceptions of Palm Sunday and Easter, we will continue this for about 2 more weeks following today.

Here are our questions and answers…

Question: Is it wrong for a woman to teach mixed congregations outside of the church like at revivals or teaching seminars?

Answer: This is a question I had as well and quite honestly I looked for every way possible, within the confines of scripture, to see a way for it to be justified. I made a list of the ways in which it might be okay…

  1. It is OUTSIDE of the local congregation and therefore would not supplant male leadership IN THE CHURCH.
  2. Unlike a local Pastor, a seminar speaker has no real authority over those attending their conference.
  3. No man “has to come” – if they come it is by freewill and therefore she is not usurping authority.
  4. It gives a place for women who have a teaching gift to express it, glorify God in her gift without disrupting the “decency & order” clearly intended by Paul in the assemblies where Male authority and leadership in teaching is required.

So I set out to “test” these assumptions, thinking I had a rather good case for it. After all, everything Paul said in 1 Cor. 14 & 1 Tim. 2 was in the context of the local assembly wasn’t it?

Well, that is where I began my search. While 1 Cor. 14 seems to be clearly referring to times when the church would gather together – perhaps in one place (rather than small groups from house to house as MOST often was the case). Though anyone who is familiar with the New Testament and specifically the writings of Paul would find it quite difficult to make a case for there being rules which only apply inside the church building (which most churches did NOT have until the 3 century) but that all mandates were for the church worldwide in all locations and in all situations. There weren’t rules for church and then rules for “real life”. Paul saw and recognized no magic line drawn between the actions of believers IN church gatherings as opposed to believers actions in the world and at home.

In 1 Tim. 2 however, the situation is different. The letter was written to Timothy and was written with the goal of instructing him so that he might teach established, Christ approved doctrine to the Christians in Ephesus.

1Tim. 1:3-4, “As I urged you when I went into Macedonia—remain in Ephesus that you may charge some that they teach no other doctrine, nor give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which cause disputes rather than godly edification which is in faith.”

So we see the intentions of Paul. Many have tried to use this passage to say that Paul was not coming against women teaching, but women teaching other doctrines…fables…genealogies from the law…etc. There is a problem with this, notice that Paul does not say, “charge the elders (pastors) or called teachers” to teach no other doctrine, but charge some. If this is what Paul was referring to in 1 Tim. 2:12, he would have told Timothy to tell not “some” but specifically the women, not to teach these false doctrine, fables…etc. As you read the letter with an unbiased mind and seeking to promote no agenda, it is impossible to argue that Paul was only intended women by this statement in 1 Tim. 1:3,4, or that such is what he was referring to in 1 Tim. 2:12. Other than the context and flow of the letter we would know this on other grounds as well. First, it is not acceptable for ANYONE to teach false doctrine not just women. Secondly, Paul states his reasons for the command concerning women in the same paragraph in which he brings it up – and false doctrine, fables and endless genealogies from the law are NOT one of them.

So, what DOES Paul say?

1Tim. 2:11-14, “(11) Let a woman learn in silence with all submission.  (12) And I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence.  (13) For Adam was formed first, then Eve. (14) And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression.”

There are two points which are the most important to understand in order to grasp specifically what Paul is saying here and where or in what situations it applies.

The first one is where are they? Well, what was the last location Paul mentioned? Back up just 3 verses and you will see the word “everywhere”. While it is directly speaking to men in that statement, two things make it clear that the location does not change by the time we reach verse 11-14. One is the phrase, “in like manner” using Greek grammar this can only mean that Paul desires women to pray everywhere JUST LIKE THE MEN only with the additional consideration to their appearance.

As Paul continues he reaches our verses in regard to women learning in silence with all submission and that a woman is not permitted to teach or usurp authority over men. SO, it is clear that the location is NOT restricted to the church. So, this is the first part of your answer to your question of whether a woman might be permitted to teach a group, including men, OUTSIDE of the church.

The next two considerations are…what does the word “teach” mean and is it connected with the word authority. Meaning, is this saying that it is not permitted to teach with authority (meaning authoritative teaching), or is the authority issue separate from the teaching issue.

Well, the word teach is the Greek word Didáskō and it means to instruct by word of mouth, in the sense of to tutor, to direct, to advise, to put in mind. Now this is important because the word Didáskō can be used in an absolute way, but it is NOT used that way in this verse.The type of teaching referred to here is that which tutors, gives advice, makes one mindful and/or offers direction. In other words, it is the kind of teaching which one does to convey doctrine and the interpretation of scripture. It therefore does not include the kind of speaking which is SUBJECTIVE. A woman might offer her testimony, or share something she received from God in her personal times of worship and devotion, or even read scripture or tell the stories which are in the scriptures. None of these break the command of Jesus Christ through Paul.

Now, the part on authority is often misinterpreted by people on BOTH sides of this issue, but the meaning is actually quite straight-forward. The word teach is NOT directly connected to the word authority, they are treated grammatically here by the Apostle as separate and distinct topics. That having been said they do affect one another. Clearly to teach doctrine and interpret scripture is an authoritative practice, but the passage is actually pointing to something which Paul ALWAYS refers to when addressing this issue – submission and authority. He is saying, it is not proper for woman (who was created FOR man and FOR his glory) to direct him in terms of doctrine and proper interpretation of scripture nor to usurp his authority as being her head (1 Cor. 11:3, “The head of every man is Christ, the head of every woman is man, the head of Christ is God.”) but to be in silence. The word silence here is NOT meaning not talking in the absolute, though the word itself CAN mean that, it does NOT mean that here. In this place it simply means to be still and tranquil. To be both inwardly and outwardly at peace.

NOW Paul gives the scriptural reason for this prohibition and while you or I may agree or disagree, if we claim to submit to the authority of scripture it makes little difference.

    1. Adam was made first. Now Paul expounds on this in 1 Cor. 11 where he is giving meaning and interpretation to Genesis 2:18 & Genesis 3:16. By inspiration, Paul is telling us that when God made man first He was saying something. He was saying, this is the human being who is designed to represent Me in the earth. He is Man, he is head, he is the beginning, he is the source of all human life, he is the husband, he is the provider, he is the protector, he is the teacher, he is the father and he is therefore My glory. When God took the woman OUT of the man, and gave her to him, He was saying…woman was made FOR man, she is under his covering and headship, she came OUT of him as her source, she is the cultivator of his seed, she is nurturer, she is manager of the home, she is mother and she is his glory.
    2. Eve saw COMPLETELY deceived and Adam was not. While this might seem like a point in Eve’s favor, it truly is not. Yes, Adam’s sin was terrible and was a transgression because he sinned with his understanding in tact. Eve however, was able to be manipulated and the truth she knew was able to be twisted inside of her due to manipulative reasoning. I have heard speakers try to make a case for this being a problem which is equal across the genders and even worse with men. Out of all the speakers I have heard say this though, not one has ever sighted a reputable study or even so much as supplied a broad cultural example. Regardless of any personal reasons or studies to the contrary – this is the stated reasons. It had NOTHING to do with teaching fables or endless genealogies or cultural prohibitions – it was a mandate from God which pointed back to creation and the fall BOTH.  

To be thorough, I will address two more things here which are often cited in protest to this doctrine in scripture. I will first say that they make no sense since they are trying to pit scripture against scripture and claim inconsistency – which if such is true, why would one desire and fight for the right to teach a Bible that is inconsistent and subject to error? It simply makes no sense. Nevertheless, the arguments are:

  1. I thought we had been redeemed from the fall so this has no bearing on us now that we are in Christ.
  2. I though there is NO male or female IN Christ.

As to the 1st argument I will say, yes…we have been redeemed from the fall, but the effects of the fall and it’s judgment has not been removed. Women STILL have pain in childbearing and men still have to work to extract from the earth what they need. So, this is proof enough that the redemption of man did not take away the judicial impact of the fall in terms of the pronouncement of God upon man.

Regarding the second argument, yes…we are heirs together of the grace of life and there is no more male nor female, bond or free, Jew or Gentile IN THE CONTEXT in which those words were spoken. If you will look at both passages you will see clearly that it is in reference to being heirs of Abraham and the promise of righteousness by faith. NO ONE is excluded due to gender, ethnicity or social status – all may equally come to God for salvation IN Christ. Also, the passage concerning being heirs together is in the context of supporting gender roles IN Christ – not abolishing them!

Gal. 3:24-29,  “(24) Therefore the law was our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith.  (25) But after faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor. (26) For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.  (27) For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. (28) There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.  (29) And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”

1Peter 3:1-7,  “(1) Wives, likewise, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives,  (2) when they observe your chaste conduct accompanied by fear. (3) Do not let your adornment be merely outward—arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel— (4)  rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God. (5) For in this manner, in former times, the holy women who trusted in God also adorned themselves, being submissive to their own husbands,  (6) as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, whose daughters you are if you do good and are not afraid with any terror. (7) Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered.”

So, the only answer at which I can arrive SCRIPTURALLY concerning women teaching men in OR outside of the church is that IF the teaching is in the form of directing doctrine, giving advice, making one mindful of doctrine or offering interpretation of scripture it is prohibited. If on the other hand it is the kind of speaking which is SUBJECTIVE, the giving of a testimony, sharing something she received from God in her personal times of worship and devotion, or even simply reading scripture or tell the stories which are in the scriptures – there appears to be no scriptural mandate against these. It is interesting as well that this is one of the rebukes Jesus offered to the church in Thyatira. He rebukes this church for allowing a woman who called herself a prophetess to teach AND to lead them astray into sexual immorality but the word AND causes the word TEACH to stand alone and it is the FIRST thing Jesus mentioned even before her seductive influence into sexual sin (See Rev. 2:20).

Question: What about Joyce Myers?

Answer: Well the simple answer is – the above answer clearly applies to her “ministry”. While I admit that Joyce appears to love the Lord and desires to serve Him, she apparently has the ability to teach and lead and even publically honors her husband verbally by never running him down and speaking well of him, it does not undo the command of Paul. These attributes are admirable and if they were expressed within the limitations prescribed in scripture it would be fine in terms of the teaching.

On a more personal note I would say, you need to look at the ministry itself. Not just in this case with Joyce Meyers, but with any ministry. These are valid questions which are in fact hinted at in scripture as the basis for someone worthy of following:

  • What are their overall doctrinal beliefs?
  • Are they careful in their exegesis of scripture?
  • Is their life, ministry and presentation of the gospel honoring to Christ?
  • Is their presence predominately marked by respectful and reverence for God and His Word or fun and light-hearted frivolity?
  • What translations of the Bible do they predominantly rely upon?
  • What is their home life like?
  • What is their financial profile?

Why such a list? Because the things the New Testament endorses for traits befitting a minister of the Gospel actually focused more on character than on doctrine and doctrine is of paramount importance!

In the case of Joyce Meyers I, personally, would have to give her a rather low rating on nearly all the above. Two points in particular are her nearly exclusive use of the Amplified Bible to teach from and her financial profile.

I am not against the Amplified Translation, but only as a reference source – NOT a study source. In other words, there are far more reliable translations from which to teach and which are not as subject to error as that one (and no I am MOST CERTAINLY NOT a KJV only person for the exact same reasons).

A simple Google search as to her financial statement reveals a pattern of excess which runs contrary to scripture – especially for someone who teaches the Word of God.

However, I will finalize my answer by asking a question…

  1. When you look at Joyce Meyers’ ministry – where is Dave…is she HIS helper or is he hers?

Question: What if the ministry is really big and influences a lot of people towards Christ?

Answer: This is another major problem with which the modern church struggles. It equates size, growth, popularity and success with God’s approval. Yet the Bible teaches otherwise. We see examples over and over in scripture that the majority is actually wrong MOST of the time. If Moses, or the kings of Israel or the prophets or even Jesus had followed the majority – the Bible would read radically different than it does! Jesus spoke against “popular vote” when He said that broad is the way that leads to death and MANY are they that find it, but narrow and confining is the way leading to life and FEW are they that find it. As to success, Jesus tells us that on the final day of Judgment there will be those who had done miracles and wonders in His name and yet did not even know Him and He never knew them. I am not saying for one minute that Joyce does not know the Lord, I am saying though that popularity and a huge following stand a greater chance to argue against a person than for them.

Jesus spoke something to the church of Sardis which I believe very much applies to MANY of the “alive” and growing churches of our day,

Rev. 3:1-2,  “(1) And to the angel of the church in Sardis write, ‘These things says He who has the seven Spirits of God and the seven stars: “I know your works, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead.  (2)  Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die, for I have not found your works perfect before God.”

Question: Where does the husband come in to the picture in regards to teaching the children. I seems a role which is predominately that of the wife and mother, but is their a point at which the husband is to participate or take over?

Answer: The brief answer is that the man is NEVER NOT to teach the children. While it IS the role of the mother to teach her children at home and rear them in a way which is both Godly and respectful of their father, the father is to enforce those teachings by review and example. The home is the ONE place the Bible clearly states is the wife & mother’s domain. By which I do not mean the owner or head, but the manager. This is clearly stated in 1Tim. 5:14, “(14) Therefore I desire that the younger widows marry, bear children, manage the house, give no opportunity to the adversary to speak reproachfully.” In this way, it could safely be argued that while the wife is to manage the home in a way which honors her husband’s desires and is best suited to him, HE is to support her in that task by serving her and making her job easier rather than more challenging. Jesus said, that if one would be first he MUST be servant of all – Mark 9:35. As the leader of the family the father is FIRST a listener and a supporter of his wife!

To illustrate this in a meaningful way which also answers our question, let’s consider the actions and behaviors of a godly husband and father when his work day is through.

When a husband’s work day is complete (whatever that looks like) his first example to his children is actually to spend a little time honoring and loving his wife. There is NOTHING more healthy and instructional to children than to see that their mother is the most important and honored person in their father’s world. This is powerfully demonstrated to the children by giving HER priority over them and other concerns when he is done with the work of the day. He needs to encourage the children to do their homework or play in the other room or something which allows him to spend some quality time with his wife. I am NOT talking about sex, I am referring to genuine and loving interest in his her. What was her day like? Did John give you trouble again in his math lessons or chores, is susie’s daydreaming too much or not cleaning up after herself…etc.

This is not a formula, it is a living relationship. He needs to express interest in her and BECOME a place for her to find respite, rest and genuine encouragement. Now is a good time to pray together, to strategize discipline issues of the day in a unified voice, to perceive if she is overwhelmed and needs a break from fixing dinner…to be taken out to dinner or make it a “microwave dinner” night…etc.

Then he needs to deal with disciplinary issues with the kids if there are any. Help them with homework in subjects he personally excels in that his wife does not – to play with them – ALL THE WHILE teaching them by way of example.

In this way, he is leading in the home, is involved in the instruction and training of the children and is serving his family by honoring his wife in her role as manager of the home and teacher of the children.

Question: Aren’t men instructed in God to consult and even listen to their wives? If so, how does that fit into not teaching men? (An example was offered of a wife telling her husband things which needed to be done around the house on a regular basis by him.)

Answer: The Bible does not actually say that men need to consult their wives, but it does illustrate that as a wise practice and in one place of course Moses is told to listen to what Sarah his wife had said, so there is most certainly a presidence.

On the other hand, a wife is not in any position to be telling her husband what chores around the house are for him to do nor not do. That would be overstepping her boundary by “directing” him. Does she have a right to appeal to him, ask him or even suggest that it would be best if he did one thing or another in the home? Of course! She is his helper and companion in life by covenant – not his slave. As partners, she has every right to be heard and to make request…and he is under godly obligation to hear and consider what she says with a view to giving her preference if at all possible.

Let’s look at the verse in question,

Gen. 21:8-13, “(8) The child grew and was weaned, and Abraham held a great feast on the day Isaac was weaned.  (9) But Sarah saw the son mocking–the one Hagar the Egyptian had borne to Abraham. (10) So she said to Abraham, “Drive out this slave with her son, for the son of this slave will not be a co-heir with my son Isaac!”  (11) Now this was a very difficult thing for Abraham because of his son. (12) But God said to Abraham, “Do not be concerned about the boy and your slave. Whatever Sarah says to you, listen to her, because your offspring will be traced through Isaac.  (13) But I will also make a nation of the slave’s son because he is your offspring.”

The word “listen” in this context means to hear and regard what she said in reference to Isaac and Ishmael. So, while the passage could be read as a command from Sarah to Abraham we know that is not the case, because it would have been ungodly and 1 Peter tells us how Sarah regarded and obeyed her husband.

1Peter 3:3-7, “(3) Do not let your adornment be merely outward—arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel— (4)  rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God.  (5) For in this manner, in former times, the holy women who trusted in God also adorned themselves, being submissive to their own husbands, (6) as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, whose daughters you are if you do good and are not afraid with any terror.  (7) Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered.”

Notice that not only did Sarah listen to and obey her husband – she called him lord – which at the time was simply a term which spoke to his being the one with authority. Notice also, that husbands are told to dwell with their wives with UNDERSTANDING. This REQUIRES that they give them audience. Listen to their hearts and even seek out their counsel. This is NOT a woman leading, teaching or directing her husband. It is a man seeking the thoughts and heart of his godly wife as a woman who has a mind and relationship with God herself. Wisdom may very well come from her in regard to many issues in your lives together. It is foolhardy to ignore a possible well-spring of wisdom in your partner and companion by covenant. This passage does not say that a husband is obligated to obey his wife as she is obligated to obey him, but he IS to KNOW her and seek her heart. If he as her head fails to listen to and know his wife in this way, God said that when the husband seeks to speak with God as his head…his words will be regarded in like manner.

 

Question: What if I have family that “could” take care of me, but won’t?

Answer: What you should do for your provision depends on a number of factors. Paul outlines a number of requirements in order to receive aid as a widow.

That list includes:

  • She HAS to be above 60 years of age.
  • She has to have been faithful to her husband(-s) and NEVER divorced except in accordance with what the scriptures allow.
  • She has to be known as a woman of good works.
  • Has she If she has helped to rear children unto the Lord (either her own, or adopted or other people’s children in whom she invested her time and godly training.)
  • Has she lodged strangers (this one is odd to us but it would be the same as taking in KNOWN traveling Christians who needed somewhere to stay while in town. It was something which happened quite a bit in the early church and in Jewish communities but is far less prevalent now. The heart of the requirement is loving, Christian service and provision.
  • Has she washed the saints feet – again also points to the former in that it was a humble service towards others – and was typically done for those who visit your home for a meal.
  • Has she relieved the afflicted – meaning has she made other’s burdens lighter – seeking to be a blessing rather than always being the object of other’s pity.
  • Has she ordered the entire scope of her life with works which represent her Lord and serve His kingdom?

The spirit of these questions speak to her heart as a servant of God. Does she love and value the saints, does she serve rather than looking to be served, does she minister to young women instructing them in Godly womanhood and modeling the same? If not, then she is not even to be considered for financial aid from the church.

Now, that these needed to be her tendencies and personal character qualities SINCE she came to Christ is obvious. For even Paul would not have qualified prior to his conversion.

Also, the fact that if she has believing relatives who could take care of her – shows that the “heart” of the command is to not needlessly burden the church with her maintenance and upkeep if other means are at her disposal.

Also, in Paul’s day he confronted many different cultures with different social rules. In some cases women had no public standing whatsoever and so could not earn money for themselves – other than to prostitute themselves. In these cases, if their family did not support them – they would starve. In such cases the provisions for widows might be extended to young women who have not been able to yet mary. Other societies, allowed women to own and manage their own businesses, so the scope of the possibilities being addressed are many. As such, a litany of secondary issues need to be considered in today’s world…

  1. If they are under 60, it is desirable and advisable to remarry.
    1. Reasons for this are given in 1 Tim. 5:9-15. In this statement by Paul to widows, it is my assumption (based upon his stated concerns) that he is reasoning that if they ever married, they must be of the sort that desire and maybe even require the kind of physical companionship scriptural marriage provides – as such it would be unwise to tempt temptation…seek to remarry!
  2. Do you have ANY income at all (social security, pension, retirement, 401K…etc.)? If so, do  you have a budget you live by? Is there anything you can do to limit your expenses?
  3. Are you living beyond your means? (You won’t know if you do not map out your REAL necessities against  your known income.) If you are, THIS is your first responsibility! Ask God for help and maybe even the counsel of a brother or sister or you elders to help you set up a reasonable budget and a plan to get yourself on track with it.
  4. Many times two or three women who are in a similar situation can come together and share the rent and living expenses so as to require no outside assistance. When such is possible, asking for help from the church is unwarranted.
  5. Are they healthy enough to seek employment of some sort?
  6. If their relatives are unwilling to provide for them, would they take you in…or could you offer to DO something to contribute to their home so that you might be allowed to live there?

IF all of these have been explored and she still needs aid and meets the requirements outlined in scripture then she needs to be given whatever aid her local assembly can offer. That may require someone to open their home if there isn’t sufficient funds to help her live on her own and in fact such would most certainly be preferable especially if it would provide a godly male covering.

By extension, these same rules “might” apply to young women who have no family or provided male covering (as Jesus did for Mary by calling upon John to watch out for her as his own mother). However, even as Paul advised the younger widows to marry, such young women should seek the same.

These are the links to the two videos from Revive our Hearts, a ministry of Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth, whose ministry about, for and to women everywhere is a testament to Biblical womanhood and an honor to her Lord. We very much appreciate her and those in her ministry for their service in the Lord as well as these two beautiful sisters in Christ whose love and dedication to Jesus prove His Lordship in their lives!

  1. The Ripple Effect of True Womanhood – Testimony of Cindy Cabrera de Fuentes
  2. Sacrificing a Dream to Answer God’s Call – Testimony of Sydel Perez

 

This service had content that is NOT written out here, so I would encourage you to listen to it WHILE you read…Blessings! 

 

I hope this teaching will challenge you and encourage you to place your trust in the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord.

You have a special place in God’s family & kingdom. If you do not know Him, please use our ‘Contact Us‘ page and reach out so we may have the privilege of introducing you to the Lord. Neither money nor attendance at our church will be mentioned.

If you have been spiritually fed by this ministry and wish to give, we truly appreciate that and you may do so here, but all outreaches of this ministry are FREE for you and anyone to enjoy at no cost.

Blessings!

 

Hi I am Pastor Mark...

I have been a pastor for nearly 30 years now (2018), though never quite like I am today. (more on that in a moment)

-
As to my home, I have been married since 1995 to my wonderful wife Terissa Woodson who is my best friend, greatest personal support and most valued aid.
-
As far as my education goes, I grew up in a Christian home, but questioned everything I was ever taught. I graduated from Bible college in 1990 and continued to question everything I was ever taught (I do not mention my college in order to avoid being labeled). Perhaps my greatest preparation for ministry has been life and ministry itself. To quote an author I have come to enjoy namely Fredrick Buechner in his writing entitled, Now and Then,

"If God speaks to us at all other than through such official channels as the Bible and the church, then I think that He speaks to us largely through what happens to us...if we keep our hearts open as well as our ears, if we listen with patience and hope, if we remember at all deeply and honestly, then I think we come to recognize beyond all doubt, that, however faintly we may hear Him, He is indeed speaking to us, and that, however little we may understand of it, His word to each of us is both recoverable and precious beyond telling."

~ Fredrick Buechner

-
By 2009 I’d been Pastoring for nearly 20 years. Earlier in 2009 the Lord revealed to me that the way we had structured our church was not in keeping with the New Testament. This was a shock to me and it is was a revelation that did not come all at once but over the course of a few weeks.

We were a traditional single pastor led congregation. It was a top-bottom model of ministry which is in part biblical, but not in the form of a monarchy.

The needed change did not come into focus until about 9 very intense months of study and discussions with those who were leaders in our church at the time.

We believe the Bible teaches co-leadership with equal authority in each local assembly and though we currently only have one Pastor/Elder, it is our desire that God, in His faithfulness and timing, may bring us more as we grow in maturity and even in numbers. Having multiple shepherds with God's heart and equal authority protects both Shepherds and sheep. Equal accountability keep authority and doctrine in check. Multiple shepherds also provides teaching with various styles and giftings with leadership skills which are both different and complementary.

Well that is about all there is of interest to tell you about me. I hope our ministry here is a blessing to you and your family. I also hope that it is only a supplement to a local church where you are committed to other believers in a community of grace.

~God Bless!