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Old 07-19-2017, 05:05 PM   #1
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Default Women's Role

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Evangelical. Thank you for your input. There are couple things I wanted to talk about but how about we start with one.

What is your understanding on sexism? I'm also in Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies and by no means the "common definition of sexism today" has ever revolved around "females are not allowed to use the male toilets and vice versa". Sexism is, and has always been about "the prejudice, stereotyping, or discrimination based on a person's sex or gender." Note here that by definition, sexism can affect either gender.

And I apologize if I haven't made it clearer. When I talked about sexism exhibited in the LC, I was referring to misogyny, which stands for dislike of, contempt for, or ingrained prejudice against women. From my experience, there certainly is prejudice against women in LC. I'm taking your comment "there's no dress code" at face value; Sure, different localities might have different practices. I'll just ask you one thing: Who do you see, in the leadership circle of LC, is a woman? And whom among those women that you considered leaders in the LC community, is not some elder/male leader's wife, sister, daughter? I'm genuinely curious if you know any sister that is in leadership position because of and only because of her spirituality.

That's the thing. Sexism to me is all about power dynamics. Men hold positions of power in the LC system. Men have all the representation in leadership. There are at least the same number of women, if not more, in the LC system. Why aren't women represented in positions of power and be involved in high level decision making? There are and always have been spiritual giants that are women. When voices from one gender are not heard but rather ignored, whatever the situation is, there is a problem.

I appreciate you bringing up the historical viewpoint. If you think people then got things right and you would rather live according to those standards, well, I'm fairly certain that I know much more about you as a person and a believer than how much info you revealed about yourself on this forum.

Thank you for your input. Looking forward to seeing your reply.
Hi QOSTA,

If the meaning of sexism meant misogyny then I have no problem with that. The topic however usually reverts to "women can't be leaders" but the two matters are different issues. I note that your post started off talking about misogyny but then reverted to matters of women in church leadership. If "women can't be leaders" is the same as misogyny then Jesus was sexist for choosing only 12 male church leaders and in not allowing Mary, a woman, to touch Him after His resurrection, but allowing Thomas, a male disciple, to touch Him.

Therefore in the first church, the group of 12 disciples, the voices of women were not heard and no woman was involved in the decision making of the church. The Last Supper, Jesus shared only with his closest 12, and the women close to Jesus did not participate nor were they invited.

One would think that if Jesus was truly a social reformer, intending to bring in equality between the sexes, he would have included at least one woman on his team and would not be shy about doing so. He had no problem being persecuted for meeting with tax collectors and prostitutes, yet he never reversed hundreds of years of Jewish tradition. Still, there were many women close to Jesus and loved by Jesus, Mary, Martha, etc. The thing is, they did not have to be included in high level decision making, and furthermore, they were happy about that and did not complain about it. That kind of woman that God prefers is described in 1 Peter 3:4 You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God.

Submission, not trying to achieve leadership positions, is how holy women have always behaved according to Peter:

1 Peter 3:5 For this is the way the holy women of the past who put their hope in God used to adorn themselves. They submitted themselves to their own husbands,

verse 6:

Sarah obeyed her husband, Abraham, and called him her master.


Sarah did not seek an equal leadership position alongside her husband Abraham nor seek to be Abraham's master/leader. Yet Sarah was still truly a great woman. Sarah is an example of a great, holy woman.

In my experience, 1 Peter 3:4 does not describe most women I know involved in feminism movements. God is not impressed at women trying to achieve high positions of authority in the church with their boldness and loudness. He is rather, impressed by women who can suppress their ambitions, if any, and become a gentle and quiet spirit, in support of leaders.

Just because a female may be very spiritual, even more spiritual then men, it does not qualify them for a leadership position over men. Sarah for example may have been far more spiritual than Abraham, yet she was still obliged to call him her master.

You have said that sexism to you is about power dynamics.

To me, it is about God's creation and how male and female were created differently. There is something in most men, in their God-given DNA that does not want nor require women to be their leaders.
There is also something ingrained in most women I know, that causes them to not desire to be leaders. The situation of male leaders and female supporters mirrors the life of Abraham and Sarah, and the intended purpose for women to be helpers for men. God created Eve intending her to be a helper for Adam, not his leader.

Remember, God did not create women first. They were not originally in God's plan for mankind, until God saw that the animals alone were not enough for Adam. Paul's reason for not allowing women in positions of authority was simply because Adam was created first:
1 Tim 2:13 For Adam was formed first, then Eve.

On the matter of what the bible says, I bring up two great articles by a well respected theologian and Greek NT expert that you may be interested to read given your studies.

https://bible.org/series/women-leadership

The historical and I believe true interpretation of the bible, in the original Greek, does not support the modern day concepts of females in church leadership. One cannot support female leaders in the church without compromising some aspect of the bible or their spirituality.

The bible's message that salvation is for both male and female has been compromised by twisting it around to mean that male and female are equal, when int he life of Sarah/Abraham, Adam/Eve, Jesus and the disciples, Peter, Paul, this is clearly not the case. Galatians 3:28, does not abolish all sexual differences so that men and women may function in identical capacities.
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Old 07-19-2017, 05:31 PM   #2
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Default Re: LC turned me into a leftist

QOSTA,

This is classic Evangelical. He constructed his own scenario, asked a question and answered it instead of responding to the one thing you wanted to know.

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I'll just ask you one thing: Who do you see, in the leadership circle of LC, is a woman? And whom among those women that you considered leaders in the LC community, is not some elder/male leader's wife, sister, daughter? I'm genuinely curious if you know any sister that is in leadership position because of and only because of her spirituality.
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Old 07-19-2017, 05:33 PM   #3
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Default Re: LC turned me into a leftist

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The historical and I believe true interpretation of the bible, in the original Greek, does not support the modern day concepts of females in church leadership.
Then why does the N.T. record Phoebe a deaconess (Rm 16.1), Prisca a female worker (Rm 16.3), and Junia a female apostle (Rm 16.7)?
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Old 07-19-2017, 05:38 PM   #4
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QOSTA,

This is classic Evangelical. He constructed his own question and answered it instead of responding to the one thing you wanted to know.



Nell
The answer to that question is no, I have not seen any female in a leadership position on the basis of her own spirituality and leading men outside of the covering of a husband.

Rather, I have seen husbands and wives serving God together, in a way that mirrors the example of Abraham and Sarah. Two people, male and female, serving God together as God intended. The female, submitting to her husband, and not trying to rule over him or others, in the church. But likely, having the freedom to rule the roost at home. Male leaders at church, female leaders at home, is often how I have observed things to be in the LC. When I first joined the LC and attending home meetings, it was the women of the house telling people what to do and when to do it. Yet not in an overbearing way. So women get to rule the home 24/7 , 7 days a week, and they complain about not being in leadership for 2 hours on a Sunday? That's how I see the matter anyway.

And one must be naive to think that men in church leadership positions do not have discussions at home with their wives where their wives can provide input and influence their decision making. A strong male leader and a sweet yet crafty wife is the stereotypical power couple I believe. Abraham and Sarah were possibly like that because Sarah devised the plan to have Ishmael. The bible contains examples of women married to powerful men influencing or trying to influence their decision making at home, such as the beheading of John the baptist, and warning Pilate to have nothing to do with Jesus.
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Old 07-19-2017, 05:44 PM   #5
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Then why does the N.T. record Phoebe a deaconess (Rm 16.1), Prisca a female worker (Rm 16.3), and Junia a female apostle (Rm 16.7)?

This is thoroughly addressed by a Greek NT expert:

https://bible.org/article/may-women-...elude-dialogue

It is lengthy and deserving of a full read, but I just submit two of the 5 arguments as a taste:

in 1 Tim 4:6 Paul calls Timothy a DIAKONOS—and Timothy was associated with the church in Ephesus. But he obviously was not a deacon. So, why then should we call Phoebe a ‘deacon’? The term is thus rather flexible and it seems gratuitous to call Phoebe a deacon in Rom 16:7.

In response are five arguments: (1) If women deacons are in view in v. 11, it seems rather strange that they should be discussed right in the middle of the qualifications for male deacons, rather than by themselves; (2) Paul indeed seems to go out of his way to indicate that women are NOT deacons in the very next verse, for he says “Deacons must be husbands of one wife”
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Old 07-19-2017, 07:13 PM   #6
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Default Re: LC turned me into a leftist

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This is thoroughly addressed by a Greek NT expert:
I'm tired of your "experts." Have not we in the LC's heard enough of "experts" telling us that the plain words of scripture do not really mean what they say?

You promote Witness Lee, the expert minister of the age, who spent hours convincing us that I Cor 6 about suing other Christians does not apply to the dozens of lawsuits initiated by LSM.

Read Romans 16.1 again. "Our sister Phoebe is a deaconess of the church in Cenchrea." What part of that simple statement by Apostle Paul is too difficult for you to understand? Is Paul speaking in parables here?
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Old 07-19-2017, 08:53 PM   #7
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I'm tired of your "experts." Have not we in the LC's heard enough of "experts" telling us that the plain words of scripture do not really mean what they say?
So you don't consider Wallace to be an expert in Greek NT. If the "plain words of scripture" were sufficient we would hardly need theologians, scholars, teachers, would we? My first question is, which bible version do you want to take as a "plain scripture"?

You have claimed that Romans 16:1 says

" "Our sister Phoebe is a deaconess of the church in Cenchrea."



From
http://biblehub.com/romans/16-1.htm

I count only in 4 of the 24 bible versions is the word translated as deacon or deaconess.


Wallace says this:

In Rom 16:1, Phoebe is called a “servant of the church of Cenchrea.” This word, ‘servant,’ is what is occasionally translated as ‘minister,’ or less often as ‘deacon.’

If I read this plainly as a "servant of the church" and not a deacon, as most of the translations say, then you cannot say this conclusively proves that Phoebe had some official authority in the church as a deacon. If I put my "KJV only" hat on, then in the KJV and also in the revised KJV it says servant and not deacon. It is noteworthy that the translators of the revised KJV did not think it necessary to revise the word servant to deacon.


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You promote Witness Lee, the expert minister of the age, who spent hours convincing us that I Cor 6 about suing other Christians does not apply to the dozens of lawsuits initiated by LSM.
It seems not to matter whether I quote Lee who people say "was not a theologian" or Wallace who is a theologian. You seem to have made your mind up about the matter.


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Read Romans 16.1 again. "Our sister Phoebe is a deaconess of the church in Cenchrea." What part of that simple statement by Apostle Paul is too difficult for you to understand? Is Paul speaking in parables here?

When does a word not mean what it plainly says? When that word has gone through countless revisions and translations and when it is interpreted 2000 years later by a modern American mind. That's why we need experts like Wallace who can interpret the original Greek. Apparently the word for deaconess is not meant in an official capacity, it is used in a general way. A single word can have two different meanings. Greek NT experts are able to decipher and determine the most likely context and meaning of the words.

I thought you understood this, as you seemed to support the notion of there being "lemon translations" of the bible in other threads concerning the role of women in the church.

Unfortunately the idea of "lemon translations" of the original Greek can be a double edged sword. We cannot claim there are inaccurate translations on some parts of the bible and ignore inaccurate translations in others.
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Old 07-19-2017, 10:21 PM   #8
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Default Re: LC turned me into a leftist

.

Gen. 21:12 But God said to Abraham, “Be not displeased because of the lad and because of your slave woman; whatever Sarah says to you, do as she tells you, for through Isaac shall your descendants be named.

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Old 07-19-2017, 10:57 PM   #9
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.

Gen. 21:12 But God said to Abraham, “Be not displeased because of the lad and because of your slave woman; whatever Sarah says to you, do as she tells you, for through Isaac shall your descendants be named.

.
Another example of the wife being given instruction by God to tell the husband. This clearly shows the role of women in a relationship where there is male leadership. This is an example of Sarah the prophetess, speaking God's Word to her master Abraham. In church leadership, an elder may be the leader but his wife supports by providing godly counsel at home.
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Old 07-20-2017, 06:29 AM   #10
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Another example of the wife being given instruction by God to tell the husband. This clearly shows the role of women in a relationship where there is male leadership. This is an example of Sarah the prophetess, speaking God's Word to her master Abraham. In church leadership, an elder may be the leader but his wife supports by providing godly counsel at home.
The verse speaks for itself. We can read...plain English. We don't need your male gender bias twisting to fit your own personal narrative.

God told Abraham to do WHATEVER his wife tells him.

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Old 07-20-2017, 07:53 AM   #11
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Hi QOSTA,
...
Remember, God did not create women first. They were not originally in God's plan for mankind, until God saw that the animals alone were not enough for Adam.
Wait. What? Women were Plan B?

Which one of your "experts" told you this? Or did you think it up all by yourself? So let's get this straight: God made a mistake when he forgot that the animals were not enough for Adam so he---quick like a bunny---had to rework his plan and make a woman? Maybe God figured out that Adam couldn't make babies all by himself? Oops!

Genesis 1:27 kinda' sounds like women were part of the plan from the beginning.

Gen. 1:27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
28 And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it:

You've been a forum member for less than a year, yet you have posted a whopping 2,139 times. Maybe you need to take a break.

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Old 07-20-2017, 09:02 AM   #12
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Hi QOSTA,

Remember, God did not create women first. They were not originally in God's plan for mankind, until God saw that the animals alone were not enough for Adam. Paul's reason for not allowing women in positions of authority was simply because Adam was created first:
1 Tim 2:13 For Adam was formed first, then Eve.
Brother Evangelical!
Women were an afterthought??? Really? We were not originally in God's plan for mankind??? until God saw that the animals alone were not enough for Adam??

So... the Bride of Christ was an afterthought? And God did not really know us and choose us women before the foundation of the world?

No one is arguing God created Adam first.
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Old 07-20-2017, 10:20 AM   #13
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Brother Evangelical!
Women were an afterthought??? Really? We were not originally in God's plan for mankind??? until God saw that the animals alone were not enough for Adam??

So... the Bride of Christ was an afterthought? And God did not really know us and choose us women before the foundation of the world?

No one is arguing God created Adam first.
If I read too many more of EvanJelly's posts, I might even become a "Leftist!"
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Old 07-20-2017, 10:47 AM   #14
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You have claimed that Romans 16:1 says

" "Our sister Phoebe is a deaconess of the church in Cenchrea."


Wallace says this:

In Rom 16:1, Phoebe is called a “servant of the church of Cenchrea.” This word, ‘servant,’ is what is occasionally translated as ‘minister,’ or less often as ‘deacon.’
Your argument backfires on you when we consider the ramifications.

If the Greek work "DIAKONOS" refers to Timothy a "good minister of Jesus Christ" (I Tim 4.6) as you say, then lets also call Phoebe a "good minister of Jesus Christ."

How about that Evangelical? A sister ministering to the church in Cenchrea, now recommended by Paul to the saints in Rome. Wow!
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Old 07-20-2017, 11:15 AM   #15
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EV

If there is something to learn from the brief period that Adam was recorded as existing without the woman, it is that he figured out pretty quick that it was not going to be a good life without someone to be with him. Sort of like knowing that woman was to be created, but let the man find out that he is alone. Find out how insufficient he is. That he needs help.

Then continue with Plan A.
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Old 07-20-2017, 02:16 PM   #16
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The verse speaks for itself. We can read...plain English. We don't need your male gender bias twisting to fit your own personal narrative.

God told Abraham to do WHATEVER his wife tells him.

Nell
Does this mean Sarah became Abraham's master?
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Old 07-20-2017, 02:21 PM   #17
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Does this mean Sarah became Abraham's master?
No. It doesn't.
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Old 07-20-2017, 02:25 PM   #18
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Brother Evangelical!
Women were an afterthought??? Really? We were not originally in God's plan for mankind??? until God saw that the animals alone were not enough for Adam??

So... the Bride of Christ was an afterthought? And God did not really know us and choose us women before the foundation of the world?

No one is arguing God created Adam first.
In eternity past of course women were part of God's plan.

However in time, in the creation account of Genesis, God created the man, God created the animals, and then God realized man needed a helper so He created woman. The classical Sunday school account usually mentions how lonely Adam was and how he couldn't find a suitable helper in the animals.
It all sounds very much like an afterthought from our perspective. Of course God being all-knowing , had a plan all along.

The one argument that destroys the feminist ideas is that Paul states that woman was not created for woman's sake but woman for man's sake:

“man was not created for woman’s sake, but woman for the man’s sake” (1 Cor. 11:9).

God created women to be companions for man, not to be man's leaders.
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Old 07-20-2017, 02:32 PM   #19
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Your argument backfires on you when we consider the ramifications.

If the Greek work "DIAKONOS" refers to Timothy a "good minister of Jesus Christ" (I Tim 4.6) as you say, then lets also call Phoebe a "good minister of Jesus Christ."

How about that Evangelical? A sister ministering to the church in Cenchrea, now recommended by Paul to the saints in Rome. Wow!
Not really, because the term minister does not always imply an official position in the church. We are all ministers of Christ aren't we, women included. Ministering includes the practical things such as preparing meals. We are not all leaders, however.

The only word we could use to support the idea of the sister being in an official leadership position is the word Deacon because that was an official position in the church. The word minister however carries no sense of church leadership.
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Old 07-20-2017, 02:36 PM   #20
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EV

If there is something to learn from the brief period that Adam was recorded as existing without the woman, it is that he figured out pretty quick that it was not going to be a good life without someone to be with him. Sort of like knowing that woman was to be created, but let the man find out that he is alone. Find out how insufficient he is. That he needs help.

Then continue with Plan A.
Yes, I believe God did that for Adam's benefit to show that he needed a wife.
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Old 07-20-2017, 02:38 PM   #21
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No. It doesn't.
Sarah was acting as a prophetess not as Abraham's leader. I'm not against men listening to women or doing what women says. Every man has a mother, sisters, daughters, and most of the time we do what they say. Even church leaders will likely be listening to their wives at home. Let's not forget that in some cases it is the women encouraging or pushing men into positions of leadership in the church.
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Old 07-20-2017, 03:56 PM   #22
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. . . and then God realized man needed a helper so He created woman. . . .
Did you actually mean to write that? God got all the way through creation to the forming of Adam, then "realized man needed a helper so He created woman"? Are you out of your mind?

Your version is much less plausible than the Sunday School version. And much less in sync with the scripture. At least the Sunday School version acknowledges an all-knowing God who allowed Adam to see his lack rather than just push it on him. Your version makes God into a half-baked buffoon who has to quickly take action to cover up his mistake.

Maybe that is the reason your sect is always so busy interpreting from scripture what actually isn't there. You are convinced that the "God-breathed" version is missing something, so Nee and Lee (and now maybe you) have been needed to bolster the scripture into something more fitting the God of your making.

As someone once said, God made man in His image, and man has been returning the favor ever since.
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Old 07-20-2017, 04:17 PM   #23
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In eternity past of course women were part of God's plan.

However in time, in the creation account of Genesis, God created the man, God created the animals, and then God realized man needed a helper so He created woman.
God realized?
I believe God knew all along in the garden. It was Adam who sensed something was missing. After all, When God created the animals, He created male and female so they could reproduce. He probably wondered why the male animals had female companions but not him.

He was a spirit with a living soul filled with emotions and a will. After the fall, the spirit of man went dormant and the first man Adam, became a living soul we read in 1 Cor 15:45. So when The Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him.” He saw that Adam realized the male animals had female counterparts. That's why I believe He said it is not good for the man to be alone.

Quote:
It all sounds very much like an afterthought from our perspective. Of course God being all-knowing , had a plan all along.
But that's not how it came across in your comment. Glad you clarified.

Quote:
The one argument that destroys the feminist ideas is that Paul states that woman was not created for woman's sake but woman for man's sake:

“man was not created for woman’s sake, but woman for the man’s sake” (1 Cor. 11:9).
Paul also said "I say to the unmarried and to widows that it is good for them if they remain even as I."

Quote:
God created women to be companions for man, not to be man's leaders.
Well. That makes Adam a very poor 'leader' doesn't it?
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Old 07-20-2017, 05:02 PM   #24
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OK guys. Let's not belabor these points anymore in this thread. Let's let QOTSA have her thread back.
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Old 07-20-2017, 08:59 PM   #25
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Rules about female/male interaction are not uncommon in my view in Christianity. I was once involved in an inter-denominational evangelical organization that believed men and women could not hold hands because the tension between them will lead to a 30 second flurry of activity and produce unwanted offspring. They warned us about holding hands in other words. The LC do not go to such extremes, but I think it works - the out of wedlock pregnancy rate would be lower in the LC than say the Baptist church and Pentecostal churches, applying the biblical principle of marrying rather than burning. This is because in the LC marriage is encouraged rather than so-called "Christian dating".
From my experiences and observations in LC's, denominational, and non-denominational church, each you would not likely to see a brother and sister holding hands unless they're married.
In my adult experiences since moving to Washington state, children being born out of wedlock is rare.
As far as female/male interaction goes, there's a bit normal human conversations in denominational and non-denominational churches whereas in the LC, it's not that easy. There is a social dysfunction resulting from concepts young people in the local churches have. Single sisters are apprehensive being spoken to by single brothers and single brothers may have their unique concepts. "Do I need to check with the brothers before speaking to sister ____". Responsible brothers may have their concepts too. If a single sister is responding in conversation to a single brother, she's being flirty. When in fact she's just being nice and cordial. Responsible brothers may think single brothers need to check for their approval before interacting with a single sister with a courtship in mind. Each locality is different. I have had my experiences and ones in other localities has had theirs.
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Old 07-21-2017, 09:23 AM   #26
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Remember, God did not create women first. They were not originally in God's plan for mankind, until God saw that the animals alone were not enough for Adam.
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In eternity past of course women were part of God's plan.
OK. I'll bite. What's the difference between "originally" and "eternity past"? I'm sure you will come up some wordy song-and-dance with an "expert" or two thrown in. Your male bias has reared its ugly head once again. I will join OBW in asking "Have you lost your mind?"
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Due to inaccurate translations of a few verses in the Bible, women have been hindered in their walk with the Lord and their roles in the church, having been relegated to a subservience which God never intended.

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Old 07-21-2017, 10:29 AM   #27
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Actually Nell, I broke these number of posts off into a new thread and entitled it "Women's Role". Anybody is more than welcome to suggest a better title. I was getting concerned that our new friend QOTSA was having her thread hijacked, especially by Mr. Wonderful

In my opinion, the root of the problems we saw in the Local Church go all the way back to Watchman Nee. God provided him with a number of older, mature and wise women in his early life. He got big taste of what God can do through learned and mature women. He was also a careful reader of the Bible and had to notice this dynamic all through the Scriptures. Yet he seemed to abandon what God clearly showed him in regards to women's importance and value in the Body of Christ. Instead, it is apparent that he fell back on the ancient cultural norms and traditions of the Chinese culture. Additionally, if only a fraction of what Dr. Lily Hsu wrote in her memoir was true and accurate, it would seem that Nee actually fell into the worst disrespect and mistreatment that any man can perpetrate upon a woman.
See this thread about Lily Hsu's memoir

Obviously, Witness Lee continued, and in some sense intensified, this dynamic within the Local Church movement, and it continues on to this very day. I think it is possible that this "spirit of abuse" towards women reared it's ugly head in the life and times of Witness Lee's sons, most notably his son Phillip. It is my understanding that Timothy was not far behind his brother in his morality towards women.
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Old 07-21-2017, 11:03 AM   #28
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Thanks Unto. I thought that might be the case. I edited just before you posted.

The problem, IMHO, with the "Evangelical perspective" is that he seems to go far beyond what Lee, Nee and even the Blendeds practice...the current ludicrous example being that woman was not part of God's plan. There is no question about the "non-role" of women in the LSM/LC but this guy is beyond the pale.

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Old 07-21-2017, 03:49 PM   #29
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I have already explained my use of the term "original plan" that I spoke from our perspective in time, and clarified my statement here:


It all sounds very much like an afterthought from our perspective. Of course God being all-knowing , had a plan all along.


I did not mean the term "original" to mean from the start of eternity.

This seems to have been understood by countmeworthy.

There are other matters in which we may say were not in God's original plan but of course were in His plan all along. For example eating animals and sin were not in God's original plan.

Some took issue with my statement that "God realized" man needed a woman.

This idea of "God realizing" is found in popular Christian literature.

In the book "Party of Two: Lessons for Staying in Step in Dating, Marriage, and Family Life By Beverly LaHaye, Tim LaHaye, page 75" it says:

"Soon after this great creative miracle, God realized "it was not good for man to be alone" "

The Creation account of Genesis does not sound like a God who had it all figured out beforehand.

These are really matters touching God's sovereignty and foreknowledge.

There are related questions around sin and the fall of man, whether this was planned all along for mankind to sin, or whether God expected mankind to resist Satan's temptation in the Garden.

Another Creation fact that points to God's "afterthought" concerning woman is that woman was not created from dust originally as a new species like Adam and the animals but was created as a version of man, being taken out of Adam's side.
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Old 07-21-2017, 03:58 PM   #30
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Default God realizing is biblical, Adam realizing is not

OBW has said that "God allowed Adam to see his lack":

Your version is much less plausible than the Sunday School version. And much less in sync with the scripture. At least the Sunday School version acknowledges an all-knowing God who allowed Adam to see his lack rather than just push it on him. Your version makes God into a half-baked buffoon who has to quickly take action to cover up his mistake.

But does the bible say that? No. The Bible in Genesis 2:18 says that it was God who realized Adam needed a wife. It says nothing about "God allowing Adam to realize".

Genesis 2:18 And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.

In Genesis 1:31 God said "God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. "

Yet in Genesis 2:18 God said "it is not good that..."

This indicates that in the creation story, God realized something was missing from His creation plan. God, not Adam. .

I would not claim that "God is a half-baked buffoon", but simply accept what the Bible says.

It was God who saw Adam's need. The bible mentions nothing about God making Adam realize his need, or Adam asking God for a wife.

Matt 6:8 your Father knows what you need before you ask him."
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Old 07-21-2017, 04:06 PM   #31
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[COLOR="Navy"]Actually Nell, I broke these number of posts off into a new thread and entitled it "Women's Role". Anybody is more than welcome to suggest a better title. I was getting concerned that our new friend QOTSA was having her thread hijacked, especially by Mr. Wonderful
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Excuse me, but how can it be called "thread hijacking" when I was replying to QOSTA as QOSTA invited me to?

You will note, that the first post in this thread is addressed to QOSTA in response to their post to me in which they said
"Thank you for your input. Looking forward to seeing your reply."

How can I hijack a thread with the OP when they are the ones I am discussing with?

I believe the hijacking started when Ohio wanted to discuss the meaning of the word Deacon.

Anyway, a separate topic is a good idea as it was becoming theological in nature rather than introductory.
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Old 07-21-2017, 04:36 PM   #32
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Excuse me, but how can it be called "thread hijacking" when I was replying to QOSTA as QOSTA invited me to?

You will note, that the first post in this thread is addressed to QOSTA in response to their post to me in which they said
"Thank you for your input. Looking forward to seeing your reply."

How can I hijack a thread with the OP when they are the ones I am discussing with?

I believe the hijacking started when Ohio wanted to discuss the meaning of the word Deacon.

Anyway, a separate topic is a good idea as it was becoming theological in nature rather than introductory.
Evy, you're such a whiner.

And it was you who launched that "deacon" tangent.
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Old 07-21-2017, 04:40 PM   #33
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Evy, you're such a whiner.

And it was you who launched that "deacon" tangent.

Really? I was replying to QOSTA. You picked up on one statement in my post to them and then posed the question:

" why does the N.T. record Phoebe a deaconess "

Then I explained to you how Greek words mean differently to English words in whatever one of only four of 20 bible versions you were using that use the word deacon and not servant.

If you think the bible plainly says deacon in that verse, it means you are using one of these versions of the bible:

NIV, NLT, or ISV.

In fact, the Greek expert I quoted to you is involved with the NIV, and going by his article does not consider the word deacon, though it be written there, to mean an official Deacon.

This is why it's important to consider the experts and each word in Greek, not just cling to one of the few bible versions that supports your view.
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Old 07-21-2017, 04:47 PM   #34
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Really? I was replying to QOSTA. You picked up on one statement in my post to them and then posed the question:

" why does the N.T. record Phoebe a deaconess "


Care to try again?
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Old 07-21-2017, 04:53 PM   #35
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Some took issue with my statement that "God realized" man needed a woman.

This idea of "God realizing" is found in popular Christian literature.

In the book "Party of Two: Lessons for Staying in Step in Dating, Marriage, and Family Life By Beverly LaHaye, Tim LaHaye, page 75" it says:
"Soon after this great creative miracle, God realized "it was not good for man to be alone"
I really gave this some thought and wonder if what God was saying was more like He realized ADAM was lonely and that Adam felt he was missing a counterpart. After all, the animals were both male and female to my knowledge. I seriously doubt they were all male! He saw the companionship of the male elephant with the female elephant, the male giraffe with the female giraffe.. and thus could it be he realized he did not have a counterpart like they did? So the realization from God was that Adam recognized and realized he did not have a mate. Just saying...

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The Creation account of Genesis does not sound like a God who had it all figured out beforehand.
In my recent studies on God the Father, I discovered and 'realized' God the Father comes up with the ideas. I explain this and more in my blog.

So you could possibly be correct here Mr E.

Shocking to the readers eh? LOL

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There are related questions around sin and the fall of man, whether this was planned all along for mankind to sin, or whether God expected mankind to resist Satan's temptation in the Garden.
I have also done on in depth study on this subject matter. Maybe at some point I will write a blog on my findings. Not going to do so unless I am led by the Spirit though.

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Another Creation fact that points to God's "afterthought" concerning woman is that woman was not created from dust originally as a new species like Adam and the animals but was created as a version of man, being taken out of Adam's side.
Now this I disagree with. God, I truly believe knew exactly when the woman was going to be taken out of the man and why He did it that way. I don't think He has revealed it to us but He knew He was going to take the woman out of the side of the man.

PEACE OUT EVERYONE! Sooner or later, He is going to gather all His saints together unto Himself. This and this is going to turn into and
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Old 07-21-2017, 04:53 PM   #36
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Rule No. 1: The Moderator is always right.

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Old 07-21-2017, 05:00 PM   #37
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Sorry Batman, I forgot.
As they say in Taiwan -- mayo wenti.
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Old 07-21-2017, 06:41 PM   #38
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Now this I disagree with. God, I truly believe knew exactly when the woman was going to be taken out of the man and why He did it that way. I don't think He has revealed it to us but He knew He was going to take the woman out of the side of the man.

PEACE OUT EVERYONE! Sooner or later, He is going to gather all His saints together unto Himself. This and this is going to turn into and
I agree. I don't know why the sentence I wrote came out like that, but I meant "afterthought" in quotations indicating it was not an afterthought but in God's plan.
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Old 07-21-2017, 06:43 PM   #39
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In my recent studies on God the Father, I discovered and 'realized' God the Father comes up with the ideas. I explain this and more in my blog.
He is the reason for our existence and purpose for everything. "God is the source".
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Old 07-22-2017, 03:59 AM   #40
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“To the degree that a woman’s influence over a man, guidance of a man, leadership of a man, is personal and a directive, it will generally offend a man’s good, God-given sense of responsibility and leadership, and thus controvert God’s created order. To an extent, a woman’s leadership or influence may be personal and non-directive or directive and non-personal, but I don’t think we should push the limits. I don’t think those would necessarily push the limits of what is appropriate. That is my general paradigm of guidance.” ~ John Piper


https://www.gotquestions.org/women-elders.html

The passages that describe the qualifications and duties of elders/overseers do not open the door for women to serve as elders. In fact, the consistent use of male pronouns and terminology argue strongly for the office of elder/overseer being restricted to men only. As with other issues in this debate, the question of women serving as elders is not a matter of chauvinism. In no sense is this a matter of men being superior to women. Rather, God restricts the office of elder to men only because that is how He has structured the church to function. Godly men are to serve as leadership, with women serving in the crucially important supporting roles.


https://www.gotquestions.org/complem...tarianism.html

What is truly the crux of this argument, and what many egalitarians fail to understand, is that a difference in role does not equate to a difference in quality, importance, or value. Men and women are equally valued in God's sight and plan. Women are not inferior to men. Rather, God assigns different roles to men and women in the church and the home because that is how He designed us to function. The truth of differentiation and equality can be seen in the functional hierarchy within the Trinity (cf. 1 Corinthians 11:3). The Son submits to the Father, and the Holy Spirit submits to the Father and the Son. This functional submission does not imply an equivalent inferiority of essence; all three Persons are equally God, but they differ in their function. Likewise, men and women are equally human beings and equally share the image of God, but they have God-ordained roles and functions that mirror the functional hierarchy within the Trinity.
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Old 07-22-2017, 09:12 AM   #41
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I have already explained my use of the term "original plan" that I spoke from our perspective in time, and clarified my statement here:

It all sounds very much like an afterthought from our perspective. Of course God being all-knowing , had a plan all along.
"Our perspective?" I don't think so. This is all YOU. It may sound like an afterthought from YOUR misogynistic perspective. YOUR perspective includes your epic male gender bias and your misogynist bent, which cannot be ignored. Nothing you say regarding women has credibility.

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Remember, God did not create women first. They were not originally in God's plan for mankind, until God saw that the animals alone were not enough for Adam.
Quote:
In eternity past of course women were part of God's plan.
There is no context where these two statements can be attributed to a sober minded man. There is no context where woman was not part of God's plan either in time or eternity. I know. Here's where you break out your "experts".
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Old 07-22-2017, 04:23 PM   #42
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"Our perspective?" I don't think so. This is all YOU. It may sound like an afterthought from YOUR misogynistic perspective. YOUR perspective includes your epic male gender bias and your misogynist bent, which cannot be ignored. Nothing you say regarding women has credibility.


There is no context where these two statements can be attributed to a sober minded man. There is no context where woman was not part of God's plan either in time or eternity. I know. Here's where you break out your "experts".
You are not quoting my full statement. I said it sounds like an afterthought but God had a plan all along. By saying it "sounds like an afterthought" I am obviously denying that it was. I never introduced the term afterthought into this discussion. It would be to deny God's plan in creation and also what male and female represent in the new testament. But from Adams perspective he might have felt that God didnt plan a companion for him while he saw the animals had one.

The first company God made for Adam was animals, not women. That's the fact. Hence in the original creation order, or the original plan, it was Adam, then animals, and then wait a minute, Adam is lonely, let's use one of his ribs (not the dust) to create the woman.

You have some biases of your own, namely, the extra-biblical opinions of Bushnell regarding what actually happened in the Garden.
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Old 07-22-2017, 05:23 PM   #43
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Default No female rulers in Gods Kingdom

Scripture is fairly clear that women will not occupy ruling positions in Gods kingdom. This is another reason why women are not to rule the church.

In Matthew 19.28 Jesus promised his all male disciples to rule over the 12 tribes. No women invited.

In Matthew 20.20.. the mother of James and John asked for them to sit at Christs right and left.

Today, christian feminists would have us believe that the mother herself should occupy such a position.

People like Ohio are happy to quote the plain words of scripture when it suits them.

I wonder what they can do with plain reading of a verse like this:

Isaiah 3.12 as for my people, children are their oppressors, and women rule over them. O my people, they which lead thee cause thee to err, and destroy the way of thy paths.

What makes this verse hard to ignore is that it is out of Gods mouth via the prophet. It is God himself saying that female or feminine-like male rulers over His people is a problem.

The only way I see out of this conundrum is to believe that God changed His mind and now accepts female rulers.

A few examples of female rulers does not make female rulers the norm. Just as God using a donkey to speak his word does not mean God wants all donkeys to be prophets.

God designed men for leadership but this does not mean he does not give authority to women as He pleases.
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Old 07-22-2017, 05:51 PM   #44
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Default The masculinist and the feminist

Women have been disparaged since God put enmity between the woman and the serpent in the garden. The woman was deceived by the serpent and she admitted/confessed her state to God. What God did next was an honor to the woman he formed; the woman who was deceived; the woman who admitted her state to God. Maybe not his specific intent, but God honored her with the first prophecy in the Bible. That being, the offspring of this formerly disceived woman would bring about the END of the one who deceived her. This prophesy was fulfilled with the death of Jesus Christ on the cross. While God forgave the woman and blessed her, not everyone has followed suit.

The final end of the deceiver has not been executed yet. While he still has time, the deceiver is out to exact revenge on the woman who he blames for his end. He sees his final destination--the lake of fire--and it's all her fault. So the next time you hear "the woman is to blame" remember who blamed her first. This vengeance by the serpent-deceiver has been, and still is, carried out around the world to this very day. This vengeance has been seen in male dominated cultures around the globe, ad infinitum.

I believe today, through the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit, many Christian men have been blessed with a different mindset. From what the men post here, it seems that most of the men on this forum are of this different mindset to one degree or another. That is, there is a movement underway today to practice the truth of God's word toward all members of the Lord's Body, half of which are women.

Regardless of all the verses that support women as functioning members of the Body of Christ, I believe the powerful, overriding verse is Eph. 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places." We wrestle against the serpent-deceiver...not the woman. This speaks to the enmity that has existed since the times of the garden in Gen. 3:15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.

Christian women are not the enemy. Christian men are not the enemy. Women have never been the enemy. Yet to save his sorry hide, the sinister, subtle, lying enemy lies to men (and women) as follows: because the woman was deceived in the garden, women deserve to be beaten down to "keep them in their place."

As for the man in the garden who apparently was not deceived, this should not be worn as a badge of honor. It could only mean one thing. Man's sin was willful. He knew what he was doing, and did it anyway.

Western Women in the 20th century finally openly reacted to this serpent-deceiver inspired mistreatment, and the "feminist movement" was born. Soon men and women both went off the rails. The "masculine movement" had been off the rails ad infinitum. Then women finally said "enough", and here we are...and the rails are way over there somewhere.

In summary, secular men and women, as well as Christian men and Christian women are fighting the wrong battle--the wrong enemy. They/we are fighting one another instead of the serpent-deceiver; the fight is waged against the flesh and blood of men and women instead of against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

As CMW said, the Bride of Christ is a woman. The Bride of Christ consists of Christian men and Christian women. Today's Christian misogynists appear to be a shortsighted lot who could do worse than learning something from a woman.

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Old 07-22-2017, 06:34 PM   #45
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Scripture is fairly clear that women will not occupy ruling positions in Gods kingdom.
WHAT??!!! So Revelation 1:6 and 5:10 does not pertain to women??
He has made us to be a kingdom, priests to His God and Father—to Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen. (NASB)

“You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God; and they will reign upon the earth.” (NASB)

Here is the AKJ version:
and hath made us kings and priests unto God and His Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

and hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.

Furthermore, I suppose in your eyes or the LSM's eyes, QUEEN Esther was a fluke and should not have been included in the Scriptures??

C'mon Mr E,
I am really trying to be 'fair and balanced'. But when you make comments like this, your true colors come out! Sorry to do this but here you go. This one is for you --->
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Old 07-23-2017, 05:25 AM   #46
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But does the bible say that? No. The Bible in Genesis 2:18 says that it was God who realized Adam needed a wife. It says nothing about "God allowing Adam to realize".
And if every word was designed to be a historical account (as we view history) of the creation, using only accurate descriptions of the events as they occurred, then you could come to all kinds of conclusions about the creation.

But if it was designed to provide a Cliff Notes overview of a lengthy and protracted process, heavily relying on metaphor, it is possible that the details are not very meaningful in a 21st century history, but very meaningful in covering a process that is not detailed.

In other words, the more you try to make detailed findings in the account v understand the overarching principles in the metaphors, the more you will wander off into a field with the cows.
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Old 07-23-2017, 09:46 AM   #47
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People like Ohio are happy to quote the plain words of scripture.
Thank you!

May we all be so happy!
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Old 07-23-2017, 01:59 PM   #48
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Default Re: No female rulers in Gods Kingdom

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Thank you!

May we all be so happy!
If only you were as plain about 1 Tim 2.12 and Isaiah 3.12 as you are about the verse on deacons. You cannot take a plain and literal interpretation on all these verses and still maintain a cohesive argument. You must take a nonliteral stance on at least one.

I would take a guess and say you would interpret the Timothy verse as applying only to the Corinthians and for the Isaiah verse somehow explain how the woman does not mean woman.
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Old 07-23-2017, 02:01 PM   #49
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Default Re: God realizing is biblical, Adam realizing is not

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And if every word was designed to be a historical account (as we view history) of the creation, using only accurate descriptions of the events as they occurred, then you could come to all kinds of conclusions about the creation.

But if it was designed to provide a Cliff Notes overview of a lengthy and protracted process, heavily relying on metaphor, it is possible that the details are not very meaningful in a 21st century history, but very meaningful in covering a process that is not detailed.

In other words, the more you try to make detailed findings in the account v understand the overarching principles in the metaphors, the more you will wander off into a field with the cows.
Thats why I stick to the facts regarding the order of creation. Men first..women second. As Paul said. The fact he appeals to the creation order for his limitations on women tells us that this reading of Genesis is right. Men are preferred to women in leadership because Adam was created first and Adam was not deceived.
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Old 07-23-2017, 02:05 PM   #50
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WHAT??!!! So Revelation 1:6 and 5:10 does not pertain to women??
He has made us to be a kingdom, priests to His God and Father—to Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen. (NASB)

“You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God; and they will reign upon the earth.” (NASB)

Here is the AKJ version:
and hath made us kings and priests unto God and His Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

and hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.

Furthermore, I suppose in your eyes or the LSM's eyes, QUEEN Esther was a fluke and should not have been included in the Scriptures??

C'mon Mr E,
I am really trying to be 'fair and balanced'. But when you make comments like this, your true colors come out! Sorry to do this but here you go. This one is for you --->
I was speaking of the 12 tribes of lsrael. Women obviously are kings and priests as well yet their gender disappears as there is no male or female in the future kingdom.
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Old 07-23-2017, 02:17 PM   #51
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I was speaking of the 12 tribes of lsrael. Women obviously are kings and priests as well yet their gender disappears as there is no male or female in the future kingdom.
Did you mention the 12 tribes of Israel anywhere and I missed it?
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Old 07-23-2017, 02:25 PM   #52
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Did you mention the 12 tribes of Israel anywhere and I missed it?
My second paragraph to the post of mine you quoted
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Old 07-23-2017, 03:38 PM   #53
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Default Deception versus Willful sin.

In 1 Timothy 2:13-14 Paul gives two reasons why women are not to lead.
The first, is that Adam was created before Eve, thus in God's arrangement and order of things man was to occupy the first place. The second, is that Eve disqualified herself from leadership by being deceived, whereas had the devil tried to tempt Adam he would not have succeeded.

Eve was deceived and Adam willfully sinned. Yet even though willful sin is apparently worse than deception, in church leadership deception is worse than willful sin.

It is better to know when one sins and recognize the deception of the devil than to not know when one sins and not be able to recognize the deception or put up a fight. This is why Adam was preferred for leadership than Eve.

Barne's notes on the bible says:

It is, that in the most important situation in which she was ever placed she had shown that she was not qualified to take the lead.

She had evinced a readiness to yield to temptation; a feebleness of resistance; a pliancy of character, which showed that she was not adapted to the situation of headship, and which made it proper that she should ever afterward occupy a subordinate situation. It is not meant here that Adam did not sin, nor even that he was not deceived by the tempter, but that the woman opposed a feebler resistance to the temptation than he would have done, and that the temptation as actually applied to her would have been ineffectual on him. To tempt and seduce him to fall, there were needed all the soft persuasions, the entreaties, and example of his wife.


The sin of Eve was to be deceived by the devil. The sin of Adam was to be persuaded by his wife and knowingly eat the fruit. He was gullible. Had the devil tried to tempt Adam it would not have worked, yet had Eve not persuaded Adam then Adam would not have sinned. Adam was neither deceived by the devil nor by his wife.

John Piper, seems to gives a good overview here, and I've basically been paraphrasing it:

http://www.desiringgod.org/interview...ders-affirm-it
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Old 07-23-2017, 04:29 PM   #54
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Default Re: Deception versus Willful sin.

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In 1 Timothy 2:13-14 Paul gives two reasons why women are not to lead.
The first, is that Adam was created before Eve, thus in God's arrangement and order of things man was to occupy the first place. The second, is that Eve disqualified herself from leadership by being deceived, whereas had the devil tried to tempt Adam he would not have succeeded.

Eve was deceived and Adam willfully sinned. Yet even though willful sin is apparently worse than deception, in church leadership deception is worse than willful sin.

It is better to know when one sins and recognize the deception of the devil than to not know when one sins and not be able to recognize the deception or put up a fight. This is why Adam was preferred for leadership than Eve.
It is so comforting to have witnessed how this fundamental "truth" has save the male-dominated Recovery from serious error and helped them to realize their sins.

============================================

I have mentioned this on several occasions. But it was a sister, apparently not so spiritual either, who spoke up during the pre-Whistler-quarantine battles between Anaheim and Cleveland and said that the whole think was "simply a war between two ministries and it should not affect the churches." What a word of wisdom from the Holy Spirit (I Cor. 12.7-8) to profit the body of Christ.

But what male leader was willing to accept it? Evangelical, let me ask you who was deceived, and who willfully sinned?

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Old 07-23-2017, 04:39 PM   #55
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Default Re: Deception versus Willful sin.

I don't see what this has to do with what the bible says about the role of women. If I was you I would focus on the conundrum you have by the fact that Isaiah 3.12 says women ruling God's people is a negative thing and that is the plain and literal interpretation of this passage. You may quote Bushnell if you like, I don't mind. You may need to use one of my experts to solve this one, even Albert Barnes.
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Old 07-23-2017, 05:12 PM   #56
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Default Re: God realizing is biblical, Adam realizing is not

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Thats why I stick to the facts regarding the order of creation. Men first..women second. As Paul said. The fact he appeals to the creation order for his limitations on women tells us that this reading of Genesis is right. Men are preferred to women in leadership because Adam was created first and Adam was not deceived.
Adam was not deceived...that means he sinned willfully. He knew what he was doing was sin and did it anyway.
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Old 07-23-2017, 07:06 PM   #57
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Default Re: Deception versus Willful sin.

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I don't see what this has to do with what the bible says about the role of women. If I was you I would focus on the conundrum you have by the fact that Isaiah 3.12 says women ruling God's people is a negative thing and that is the plain and literal interpretation of this passage.
I know you don't.

But you continuously defend LSM's actions, and then tell us that, "It is better to know when one sins and recognize the deception of the devil than to not know when one sins and not be able to recognize the deception or put up a fight," as if this convicts women of all time, and somehow justifies the male-dominated leadership of LSM.

So according to your conclusions ...

1. Male dominated LSM should "know one's sins and recognize the deception of the devil." But years of LC history shows us that is not true. WL covered up the continual pattern of abuse and molesting by his sons before and during the time of the "New Way."

2. Women should be banned from leadership because they are "not able to recognize the deception or put up a fight," to which I responded that one little sister had more wisdom than all the male fighting leaders in Anaheim and Cleveland before and during the GLA quarantines.

Evangelly, why would God allow female Judges like Deborah, if it was so bad?

Do you know the difference between "banning all women from having any input" and having "all women leaders?" Are you so accustomed to LC extremism, that that is all you know?
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Old 07-24-2017, 03:06 AM   #58
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Default Re: Deception versus Willful sin.

I think it's funny how everyone is arguing for a prescriptive reading of the bible when we discuss the matter of the church in the city, but on the matter of females in the church all of the descriptive examples come out.

The verse about Deborah is descriptive and it is unclear whether that Old Testament example can be overlayed onto the New Testament church. I say not, because Paul's commands regarding women are prescriptive commands, and using the prescriptive versus descriptive rules that people on this forum seem to like, Paul's New Testament commands take precedence over any descriptive examples you could come up with from the Old Testament.
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Old 07-24-2017, 05:14 AM   #59
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Default Re: Deception versus Willful sin.

The example of Deborah shows us that when male-dominated leadership fails, then God can use a female to lead His people.

Didn't Lee say the same thing?

Time for the Blendeds to learn something good from him, don't you think?
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Old 07-24-2017, 05:49 AM   #60
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Default Re: Deception versus Willful sin.

First, John Piper is not necessarily the end-all of writers on many matters.
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Yet even though willful sin is apparently worse than deception, in church leadership deception is worse than willful sin.
On what do you base this interesting conclusion? Did Paul make any statement about sin being a lesser sin?
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Old 07-24-2017, 05:57 AM   #61
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Default Re: Deception versus Willful sin.

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I think it's funny how everyone is arguing for a prescriptive reading of the bible when we discuss the matter of the church in the city, but on the matter of females in the church all of the descriptive examples come out.

The verse about Deborah is descriptive and it is unclear whether that Old Testament example can be overlayed onto the New Testament church. I say not, because Paul's commands regarding women are prescriptive commands, and using the prescriptive versus descriptive rules that people on this forum seem to like, Paul's New Testament commands take precedence over any descriptive examples you could come up with from the Old Testament.
The reason is that when you look at this one example, you find reasons for restraint on women leading. A culture of domination by women apparently infiltrating the church.

Paul's goal was not domination by men, but the end of domination. Yet in that environment, leadership by women lead to domination by women.

But in other places it was not so. So the examples stand unhindered by the declaration to Timothy. The examples make it clear that there is not a simple prescriptive position. Rather there was a prescription provided for a location that was sick because of a problem that needed help.

Even with prescriptions, they are not always required by everyone. Only the sick. But no matter whether the prescription is universal (more like a vaccine) or case-specific, it is prescribed. But what is never prescribed cannot be turned into a universally-required prescription. Therefore your complaint about dismissing the claim of a city-church rule is pointless since you cannot find such a prescription. That means no basis to claim bias no matter what you think about how to treat this other apparent prescription.
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Old 07-24-2017, 11:07 AM   #62
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Default Re: Deception versus Willful sin.

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1. Male dominated LSM should "know one's sins and recognize the deception of the devil." But years of LC history shows us that is not true. WL covered up the continual pattern of abuse and molesting by his sons before and during the time of the "New Way."

2. Women should be banned from leadership because they are "not able to recognize the deception or put up a fight," to which I responded that one little sister had more wisdom than all the male fighting leaders in Anaheim and Cleveland before and during the GLA quarantines.
My opinion brothers are too political in nature whereas sisters are not. If one wants to know the true condition of a locality, speak to the sisters. Brothers concern is solely for the ministry.
In general sisters see through the deception; the façade...games grown men play. How many have reached the point where the local church is no longer concerned about "Christ and the Church" than it is for the ministry?
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Old 07-24-2017, 12:11 PM   #63
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Default Re: Deception versus Willful sin.

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My opinion brothers are too political in nature whereas sisters are not. If one wants to know the true condition of a locality, speak to the sisters. Brothers concern is solely for the ministry.
In general sisters see through the deception; the façade...games grown men play. How many have reached the point where the local church is no longer concerned about "Christ and the Church" than it is for the ministry?
Somewhere in 1978, I thought to myself 'This is no longer Christ and the church. It is LEE and the church. At best, the CHURCH and Christ'. I was in my mid 20s.

Not tooting my horn here... I am sure Nell and many, many sisters had similar intuitive senses. I think women as a whole are more discerning and more intuitive than men.. Not all. But a LOT.

Men are thinking and figuring out how to 'build' stuff.. military, businesses, plant churches, sell products etc...
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Old 07-24-2017, 08:38 PM   #64
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First, John Piper is not necessarily the end-all of writers on many matters.
On what do you base this interesting conclusion? Did Paul make any statement about sin being a lesser sin?
Agree, I don't agree with Piper on some other matters. Perhaps John Piper has not been enlightened by the Spirit and blessed with a different mindset on this matter.

The interesting conclusion is based upon what the biblehub commentaries say on 1 Timothy 2:14. It is not to say that Adam's sin was less than Eve's. Both sinned, but Eve was the one deceived primarily, not Adam.

Ellicott:

Priority in creation was the ground alleged by St. Paul as the reason why the woman was never to exercise authority over man, the eldest born of God. “Adam was not deceived;” the Apostle now refers to the general basis of his direction respecting the exclusion of women from all public praying and teaching contained in 1Timothy 2:9-12. The argument here is a singular one—Adam and Eve both sinned, but Adam was not deceived. He sinned, quite aware all the while of the magnitude of the sin he was voluntarily committing. Eve, on the other hand, was completely, thoroughly deceived (the preposition with which the Greek verb is compounded here conveying the idea of thoroughness)—she succumbed to the serpent’s deceit. Both were involved in the sin, but only one (Eve) allowed herself to be deluded.

Barnes:

It is not meant here that Adam did not sin, nor even that he was not deceived by the tempter, but that the woman opposed a feebler resistance to the temptation than he would have done, and that the temptation as actually applied to her would have been ineffectual on him. To tempt and seduce him to fall, there were needed all the soft persuasions, the entreaties, and example of his wife.

When it is said that "Adam was not deceived," it is not meant that when he partook actually of the fruit he was under no deception, but that he was not deceived by the serpent; he was not first deceived, or first in the transgression. The woman should remember that sin began with her, and she should therefore be willing to occupy an humble and subordinate situation.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown
But in Ge 3:13, Eve says, "The serpent beguiled me." Being more easily deceived, she more easily deceives [Bengel], (2Co 11:3)


Even though both Adam and Eve sinned, the likelihood and consequence of Eve being tempted and being deceived and tempting others (Adam) is worse than Adam voluntarily succumbing to the persuasion of his wife.
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Old 07-24-2017, 09:13 PM   #65
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Default Re: Deception versus Willful sin.

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The reason is that when you look at this one example, you find reasons for restraint on women leading. A culture of domination by women apparently infiltrating the church.

Paul's goal was not domination by men, but the end of domination. Yet in that environment, leadership by women lead to domination by women.

But in other places it was not so. So the examples stand unhindered by the declaration to Timothy. The examples make it clear that there is not a simple prescriptive position. Rather there was a prescription provided for a location that was sick because of a problem that needed help.

Even with prescriptions, they are not always required by everyone. Only the sick. But no matter whether the prescription is universal (more like a vaccine) or case-specific, it is prescribed. But what is never prescribed cannot be turned into a universally-required prescription. Therefore your complaint about dismissing the claim of a city-church rule is pointless since you cannot find such a prescription. That means no basis to claim bias no matter what you think about how to treat this other apparent prescription.
This approach of descriptive vs prescriptive falls short when we consider that there are numerous descriptive passages which are considered good and praiseworthy to follow. There are Old Testament commands which were prescriptive to the Old Testament people but which are treated in a descriptive way by Christians, taking hold of their spiritual intent. There are role models in the old and new testament who we treat as examples for us to follow.

When we see how things were done and we include Christ's prayer for oneness and see his intention, then what is described can be considered prescriptive. The bible is not a book of rules but a narrative and simply paying attention only to the prescriptive parts will mean we follow only a part of God's will and desires.

We are inspired by and attempt to follow the descriptive examples of leaders in the faith such as Abraham, Noah etc. No one would say it is wrong to follow in the example of Abraham, yet there is no prescriptive passage that says we must.

Similarly, we look to the way the New Testament church was arranged, as a good example for us to follow. We consider the descriptive aspects with Christ's prayer for oneness. Whatever Christ prayed becomes almost prescriptive for us.
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Old 07-25-2017, 03:57 AM   #66
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Default Re: Men's Role

I must admit that I find volume after volume after volume of "Evangelical wisdom" (including his peeps) quite annoying, and that's all I have to say about that.

Here's a question: Do you understand that the indisputable male domination of church "leadership" has single handedly led the church into the mess it's in today? The church is fractured endlessly under male leadership. The church embraces sin of all kinds under male leadership. But don't you nasty ol' deceived women dare to presume that you can come in and take our leadership role away from us. That's OUR job. We can run this thing into the ground all by ourselves, thank you very much.

Then there's this little "Evangelical jewel": "Yet even though willful sin is apparently worse than deception, in church leadership deception is worse than willful sin." I feel better already.

This forum is full of Evangelical tirades about the mess that male church leadership has produced and this "Women's Role" topic is the kicker.

Whose church is it anyway? He is the head, we are his body, the church. Maybe the male dominant leaders should resign and let the Head, Jesus Christ, take over.

Romans 12:5 So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.
1 Corinthians 12:12 For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ.
1 Corinthians 12:27 Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.
1 Corinthians 12:18 But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him.


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Old 07-25-2017, 04:28 AM   #67
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Most arguments for female leadership are pragmatic rather than exegetical. I've presented the exegetical side. The pragmatic side is worth discussing.
If you can present any evidence that women could have or would have done a better job at church leadership than men, then please present it.
I can imagine that female leadership would be better in a number of ways besides not being as political as men. One thought, is that pedophilia would be reduced in the Catholic church if they allowed female leadership. However a percentage of Catholic nuns perpetrated or were complicit in sexual crimes committed by men.
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Old 07-25-2017, 05:32 AM   #68
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I guess you missed the part where I said:
"Whose church is it anyway? He is the head, we are his body, the church. Maybe the male dominant leaders should resign and let the Head, Jesus Christ, take over. "
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Old 07-25-2017, 11:18 AM   #69
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Here's a question: Do you understand that the indisputable male domination of church "leadership" has single handedly led the church into the mess it's in today? The church is fractured endlessly under male leadership. The church embraces sin of all kinds under male leadership. But don't you nasty ol' deceived women dare to presume that you can come in and take our leadership role away from us. That's OUR job. We can run this thing into the ground all by ourselves, thank you very much.
Many good questions. But I'll stick to this one for now.

I cannot say that the leadership is not responsible for the current situation. But there is nothing that makes the situation what it is because the leadership was male. That is a presumption that you cannot establish because there is nothing to support it other than a desire to change things up and see what happens.

And it could work.

But it could be little more than correlation. People do what people do. They do not always see the best way to do things. Do we have any evidence that it would be different if the whole thing had been reversed and it was the women who had lead to where were would be today under their leadership. I would agree that the current state might be different in specific outcome, but are you sure that it would be different in overall outcome? Different problems but overall similar?

There is no doubt that the arguments for strictly subservient roles for women has been detrimental to both the women and society in general. Just as arguing for other positions, like slavery, has resulted in much trouble over the centuries and is still with us today.

But is it simply a "male" thing? Will including women in leadership fix the problems? Could be. And it could be that the nature of the problems just changes. Problem is that women are human too. we all have a propensity for sin.

But beyond that, you are correct. We are all the church, the body of Christ. And that church is affected by the people who are part of it. Both male and female.

Surely there are some women who should not lead. Just as there as some men that should not lead. For the men, a problem is that the ones that really want to lead are too often the ones that should not. And while the outcomes could be very different with women, it could be that the same thing applies there as well. But for both, there are hopefully some who are willing to lead if called to it.
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Old 07-25-2017, 11:42 AM   #70
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Default Re: Deception versus Willful sin.

From one of Evangelical's posts above is the following from the commentator names Barnes:
Quote:
It is not meant here that Adam did not sin, nor even that he was not deceived by the tempter, but that the woman opposed a feebler resistance to the temptation than he would have done, and that the temptation as actually applied to her would have been ineffectual on him. To tempt and seduce him to fall, there were needed all the soft persuasions, the entreaties, and example of his wife.

When it is said that "Adam was not deceived," it is not meant that when he partook actually of the fruit he was under no deception, but that he was not deceived by the serpent; he was not first deceived, or first in the transgression.
What I think was missed here by EV was that Barnes did not say that Adam did not sin, nor that he was not deceived. It is true that the account shows the deception as starting with the woman. And Barnes indicates that this was because the woman was likely less resistance. An easier prey. But this is not stated as true. Just presumed. And even if it was true, does that mean that it is a universal truth that all women are easier prey for con men? Or was it simply true for this one woman (and surely some others but not necessarily all)?

Not stated.

But if the account must be universally true, then I guess it would be true to say that it doesn't take much to make a man do whatever a woman suggests. I have to believe that he heard the serpent even though the discussion was not directed at him. If he was going to be that much stronger an opponent, then why did he just partake when given the fruit? He knew what it was. Eve wasn't already spouting a bunch of extra knowledge she had received from the "elevation" of her mind. She gave him something that he knew all about. All too well. And ate.

When Barnes gets into diminishing Adam's sin because he was second, I am sort of floored. If there was a difference in knowledge and understanding concerning the forbidden fruit (whether the "fruit" was literal or metaphorical), his was the greater. And he partook without even saying a word. Without voicing his objections. He didn't even try to rehearse the reasons that he should not. Eve had at least done a little of that. So I am unable to find any actual difference in the sin that occurred. More like the use of the common story to make a point that was not actually present in the original.

Sort of like there being a prophecy about Christ in the near-term prophesy that a young woman would bear a son before certain events happened there in the OT. The original prophecy and what it pointed to in Christ were not identical. One was not a virgin as we know it while the other was. One simply bore a child while the other bore the Messiah, the Son of God. So if the original must be exactly as used as example in the later use, then even Matthew failed in his gospel. And probably Paul did too.

That is why so much of modern Christianity is somewhat a mess. Because they are unable to read the literature that is the Bible and understand the difference between the unimportant details in the story and the truth that is being told. The story of the fall was not to establish a hierarchy of man v women. It was to provide a brief story in which mankind through its two existing members (per the account) disobeyed the one strict order given.
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Old 07-25-2017, 02:20 PM   #71
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Many good questions. But I'll stick to this one for now.

I cannot say that the leadership is not responsible for the current situation. But there is nothing that makes the situation what it is because the leadership was male. That is a presumption that you cannot establish because there is nothing to support it other than a desire to change things up and see what happens.

And it could work.

But it could be little more than correlation. People do what people do. They do not always see the best way to do things. Do we have any evidence that it would be different if the whole thing had been reversed and it was the women who had lead to where were would be today under their leadership. I would agree that the current state might be different in specific outcome, but are you sure that it would be different in overall outcome? Different problems but overall similar?

There is no doubt that the arguments for strictly subservient roles for women has been detrimental to both the women and society in general. Just as arguing for other positions, like slavery, has resulted in much trouble over the centuries and is still with us today.

But is it simply a "male" thing? Will including women in leadership fix the problems? And it could be that the nature of the problems just changes. Problem is that women are human too. we all have a propensity for sin.

But beyond that, you are correct. We are all the church, the body of Christ. And that church is affected by the people who are part of it. Both male and female.

Surely there are some women who should not lead. Just as there as some men that should not lead. For the men, a problem is that the ones that really want to lead are too often the ones that should not. And while the outcomes could be very different with women, it could be that the same thing applies there as well. But for both, there are hopefully some who are willing to lead if called to it.
OBW,

I don't disagree with any of your points. Are the problems in today's church because the leaders are male? I doubt it's a "male thing" per se.

Again, I just don't think a misogynist has the moral high ground to point his long crooked finger at women as not qualified for church leadership when males haven't done themselves proud in a leadership role. Can women do better? Over time, probably not. I don't think the real problem is "who's in charge, male or female."

To me, the real problem is both a male AND female problem. That is, the church is divided. It's divided not only by denominations, but within denominations the church is divided by male and female factions. Neither men nor women will "do better" until this division is dealt with.

Is Christ divided? NO. Division is sin. Nothing seems to be as destructive as division. If men and women cared less about "whose in charge" and more about the headship of Christ, the church would have fewer spots and wrinkles. This is the change that I desire.

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Old 07-25-2017, 05:42 PM   #72
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From one of Evangelical's posts above is the following from the commentator names Barnes:
What I think was missed here by EV was that Barnes did not say that Adam did not sin, nor that he was not deceived. It is true that the account shows the deception as starting with the woman. And Barnes indicates that this was because the woman was likely less resistance. An easier prey. But this is not stated as true. Just presumed. And even if it was true, does that mean that it is a universal truth that all women are easier prey for con men? Or was it simply true for this one woman (and surely some others but not necessarily all)?

Not stated.

Actually I stated that Adam sinned, and willfully, in my earlier post.

The plain and literal reading of 1 Timothy 2:14 is that Adam was not deceived, and the woman was.

But in an argument against a plain and literal interpretation of the scripture, I think most commentators believe that this does not mean that Adam was not deceived.

As to the meaning of "not deceived", the commentators have a range of opinions including:

Adam was not deceived (at all), and whose only sin was to be persuaded by his wife. Ellicott: "He sinned, quite aware all the while of the magnitude of the sin he was voluntarily committing. Eve, on the other hand, was completely, thoroughly deceived"

Adam was not deceived first (but was deceived later by his wife, or by the serpent via his wife)

Barnes "When it is said that "Adam was not deceived," it is not meant that when he partook actually of the fruit he was under no deception, but that he was not deceived by the serpent; he was not first deceived, or first in the transgression."


Adam was not deceived by the serpent (but was deceived by his wife's enticement and persuasion)

Barnes " it is not meant that when he partook actually of the fruit he was under no deception, but that he was not deceived by the serpent;"

To whatever degree Adam was deceived or not, Paul makes a distinction between the genders on the basis of the deception. For this reason we cannot conclude that man and woman were equally deceived and for this reason either gender is qualified for church leadership.

Most commentators attribute the reason for this on the basis of the woman's weakness.

"There is a greater danger of self-deception in the weaker sex" ~ Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

A plausible reason why woman is not allowed to lead is not because woman's sin was greater than Adam's, but because of her weakness.

OR, because the woman was responsible for being deceived herself and deceiving Adam. (Geneva Study Bible)

There are convincing arguments for this being a universal principle.

Ellicott quoting Prof Reynolds

If there be this distinction between the sexes, that distinction still furnishes the basis of an argument and a reason for the advice here rendered. The catastrophe of Eden is the beacon for all generations when the sexes repeat the folly of Eve and Adam, and exchange their distinctive position and functions.”
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Old 07-26-2017, 09:01 PM   #73
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In 1 Timothy 2:13-14 Paul gives two reasons why women are not to lead.
The first, is that Adam was created before Eve, thus in God's arrangement and order of things man was to occupy the first place.
Matt. 20:16 So the last shall be first, and the first shall be last:
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Old 07-27-2017, 03:01 PM   #74
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Matt. 20:16 So the last shall be first, and the first shall be last:
Why would anyone want to be a leader then?
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Old 07-27-2017, 03:12 PM   #75
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Why would anyone want to be a leader then?
A leader of what? Ambiguity aside, I can only speculate that you mean "be a leader" in the church. Not everyone desires to be a church leader anyway.

Christ is the head. We are the body. Why not let him lead his church as he sees fit?
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Old 07-27-2017, 04:37 PM   #76
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Why would anyone want to be a leader then?
To be a servant to serve others.

A point long lost in LSM circles.
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Old 07-27-2017, 09:12 PM   #77
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A leader of what? Ambiguity aside, I can only speculate that you mean "be a leader" in the church. Not everyone desires to be a church leader anyway.

Christ is the head. We are the body. Why not let him lead his church as he sees fit?
It sounds good. And spiritual. But how he leads is generally through people. Therefore human leaders are and will be. The problem is not leaders. It is those who take the position that should not.
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Old 07-28-2017, 03:12 AM   #78
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It sounds good. And spiritual. But how he leads is generally through people. Therefore human leaders are and will be. The problem is not leaders. It is those who take the position that should not.
i.e. those who usurp his headship. And I believe it is a spiritual problem...a spiritual battle. There are 2 "churches": what man calls "church" and what God calls "church".

I just can't see that the church for which he died has a whole lot to do with the current situation. Of course, to the extent that the members are true believers, yes. To the organization, structure, and leadership in a group dynamic, I see men in charge.

The pattern in the Word is that of a family, with our Heavenly Father and our brother. We are members one of another; all men know that you are my disciples...love one for another.

The converse is a staff of pastors and a board of directors who establish guidelines which often give lip service to obedience to God's Word. This goes far beyond those who shouldn't be in a position of leadership. Expectations in most churches today is that the members would attend a service and everything will be done for them, with no expectation of personal responsibility. This pattern is perpetuated and enabled in the man-made church where politics, membership and finanacial contributions are in the forefront.
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Old 07-28-2017, 09:38 AM   #79
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i.e. those who usurp his headship. And I believe it is a spiritual problem...a spiritual battle. There are 2 "churches": what man calls "church" and what God calls "church".
And yet, the Bible is full of references to things within what is labeled as the church that are not entirely what would be if it was all just wonderfully lead directly by Christ.

It is a spiritual battle. And at times the battle, while not with flesh and blood, will include issues with flesh and blood. And it happens within the church.

What you point to in your "2 churches" comment is the fact that the word is used to label two sets (in the mathematical sense) that have significant overlap. And since they are both referred in the Bible as "church," then it is hard to declare that God only calls one of them "church." He is the inspiration behind it all. Not just the parts that talk about the universal church, the body of Christ.

First, there is the church, the body of Christ. No matter how poor we are individually with respect to each other, that is the true, spiritual church.

But second, there is the meeting which will only be nice and neat if we exclude unbelievers and those of different opinions from joining in. And if we exclude unbelievers from meeting, then we take away at least part of the process by which they might come to believe. In the more modern Baptist sense, you can't have an altar call if you have excluded the unsaved from your meeting.

And even if those who have different opinions meet separately, they are each "church" in the sense that they are assemblies of believers (or primarily so, taking the previous discussion into account). But the view from the throne is of one church, the body of Christ, that is meeting in two places. And meeting in two places is not a problem in itself. We will, in the area in which I live, meet in a significant number of places no matter how much we agree or disagree concerning all those side issues.

And if side issues are not the definer of salvation and of "church," then it is all church.
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Old 07-28-2017, 07:10 PM   #80
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A leader of what? Ambiguity aside, I can only speculate that you mean "be a leader" in the church. Not everyone desires to be a church leader anyway.

Christ is the head. We are the body. Why not let him lead his church as he sees fit?
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I agree. Lets let Christ lead and appoint anyone He chooses to oversee.
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Old 07-30-2017, 07:16 AM   #81
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The converse is a staff of pastors and a board of directors who establish guidelines which often give lip service to obedience to God's Word.
I prolly shouldn't butt in here but I should point out that God's Word is 66 books, all written by men ; Jewish men at that, that were highly patriarchal ; that depict God as a male, that attribute the fall out of paradise as the woman's' fault (I Tim 2:14, said to be written by a never married male) -, and even only has male angels -- get that ... no female angels in the Bible ... why's that?

So sticking to God's Word would likely result in the suppression of females.

In churches I've been in, 'where women are to remain silent,' they just ignore the verse that says "in Christ there's no male or female."
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Old 07-31-2017, 07:59 AM   #82
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And yet, the Bible is full of references to things within what is labeled as the church that are not entirely what would be if it was all just wonderfully lead directly by Christ.

It is a spiritual battle. And at times the battle, while not with flesh and blood, will include issues with flesh and blood. And it happens within the church.

What you point to in your "2 churches" comment is the fact that the word is used to label two sets (in the mathematical sense) that have significant overlap. And since they are both referred in the Bible as "church," then it is hard to declare that God only calls one of them "church." He is the inspiration behind it all. Not just the parts that talk about the universal church, the body of Christ.

First, there is the church, the body of Christ. No matter how poor we are individually with respect to each other, that is the true, spiritual church.

But second, there is the meeting which will only be nice and neat if we exclude unbelievers and those of different opinions from joining in. And if we exclude unbelievers from meeting, then we take away at least part of the process by which they might come to believe. In the more modern Baptist sense, you can't have an altar call if you have excluded the unsaved from your meeting.

And even if those who have different opinions meet separately, they are each "church" in the sense that they are assemblies of believers (or primarily so, taking the previous discussion into account). But the view from the throne is of one church, the body of Christ, that is meeting in two places. And meeting in two places is not a problem in itself. We will, in the area in which I live, meet in a significant number of places no matter how much we agree or disagree concerning all those side issues.

And if side issues are not the definer of salvation and of "church," then it is all church.
Point taken. Differing opinions will always be a factor, so it depends on which opinions and how extreme.

The "board of trustees," for example, amends the church bylaws to deny future membership to unmarried couples living together. However, any unmarried couple living together who are already members retain their membership as being "grandfathered in". This is a real life example. To make matters worse, said bylaws were amended behind closed doors without publishing the changes to the church. If you didn't read the bylaws after every trustee meeting, you would never know about such changes.

Many such blatant examples can be sited where the "bylaws" take precedence over the Bible.

One person who DID confront the "untrustees" were told to basically "sit down and shut up." That has a familiar ring, doesn't it?

So where does this leave the unbelievers who come to hear the gospel being preached? Is this the gospel of Jesus Christ who came to save his people from their sins, or another gospel?

The next stage is "Oh well. Nobody's perfect. We just do what we can to work around the spots and wrinkles." It seems that this is the compromised condition of the church (composit 2 churches) today. In today's political climate there would be war against Christians who stand as the church for the truth of the Bible. This war would be worse than it already is today.

How do you dig out of this mess? Leave? Stay, stand and speak the truth? The Bible hasn't changed. You have to start somewhere. Who is going to start? The leadership has failed the members and try to hide their failures. The leaders failed to obey God's word. Members who stand up and speak are shut down. Doesn't say much for Christian leaders does it? But we knew that.

Nell
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Old 07-31-2017, 02:54 PM   #83
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Point taken. Differing opinions will always be a factor, so it depends on which opinions and how extreme.

The "board of trustees," for example, amends the church bylaws to deny future membership to unmarried couples living together. However, any unmarried couple living together who are already members retain their membership as being "grandfathered in". This is a real life example. To make matters worse, said bylaws were amended behind closed doors without publishing the changes to the church. If you didn't read the bylaws after every trustee meeting, you would never know about such changes.

Many such blatant examples can be sited where the "bylaws" take precedence over the Bible.

One person who DID confront the "untrustees" were told to basically "sit down and shut up." That has a familiar ring, doesn't it?

So where does this leave the unbelievers who come to hear the gospel being preached? Is this the gospel of Jesus Christ who came to save his people from their sins, or another gospel?

The next stage is "Oh well. Nobody's perfect. We just do what we can to work around the spots and wrinkles." It seems that this is the compromised condition of the church (composit 2 churches) today. In today's political climate there would be war against Christians who stand as the church for the truth of the Bible. This war would be worse than it already is today.

How do you dig out of this mess? Leave? Stay, stand and speak the truth? The Bible hasn't changed. You have to start somewhere. Who is going to start? The leadership has failed the members and try to hide their failures. The leaders failed to obey God's word. Members who stand up and speak are shut down. Doesn't say much for Christian leaders does it? But we knew that.

Nell
I understand your frustration with how churches (assemblies) carry out their function as the body of Christ.

You example of an unmarried couple living together is a classic example. And one that is probably never simply allowed (at least "grandfathered" as you mention) but is not as simple as "just exclude." For example, if we are talking about a couple that is openly living together but wanting to be fully accepted into the fellowship, my understanding would be that there is a sound basis for some kind of action like Paul did with respect to the man in 1 Corinthians. Yet at the same time, it was noted in that case that his sin was not only contrary to the norms of the correct spiritual understanding of God's righteousness, but also even not acceptable among pagan or heathen culture.

That adds some mud to the analysis. Does that mean that it is the fact that even the heathen consider it not acceptable, therefore the outward testimony of the church is damaged, whereas, other than among church members or different assemblies, they might disagree, but the average unbeliever in the city would think it quite OK. Does that make a difference?

I am not trying to say one way or another. I am just pointing out the questions that an assembly must answer for itself since it is not simply answered for them in black and white.

And there will be assemblies that are more on the side of accepting believers in more cases despite "certain" sins than other assemblies. I mean, we know who it is that tears out of the church parking lot each week at 2 times the speed limit, yet ignore that it is a sin against the laws of the land, and therefore problematic with respect to God's righteousness. But we don't excommunicate him/her. Or take them aside to give them a stern talking to. Or . . . . But we are quick to take the couple living together aside. Or excommunicate them. Or . . . . Where is the line between accepting that we are none of us free of sin. Even sin that we know we have before we commit it again. Where is the line for exclusion?

Please note that I am attending, and happily so, an assembly that would not accept an unmarried couple living together as a member, or would probably take action if it was simply open knowledge with no signs of acting to stop. But not all will take that approach.

I know of a conservative local assembly that does some couples counseling for those seeking to be married at that church. They insist that the couples not be living together, though they do not take any effort to prove to themselves that they are not. If I understand their stance correctly, they would not perform the ceremony or allow it to occur in their church if they are living together. On one hand I somewhat applaud them for having some standards. But on the other hand, I would think that helping them take steps to be married if they are actually living together is also a spiritually positive position that they do not take.

In other words, the whole question of how to include or exclude is not as simple as defining a line on the sin bar. (sort of like the "line on the color bar" in the song "That's Just the Way it Is")

And so the question seems to be what is the purpose of the church? If it is just for the attendance and worship activities of the redeemed who are currently abiding by all the rules that we can lay down with some certainty from the Bible, then it is easy. If the idea is to be a place for the advancement from barely saved to fully sanctified, then there has to be some level of acceptance of sin in the people as long as it is not sin in the church. (And just because they are in the church is not "sin in the church" as I am intending it. More like a full acceptance of something that is fully unacceptable. Like some of the poorly-defined things that that woman, Jezebel, had brought into one of the churches in Revelation.)

So your question about when to leave is probably answered (by me or in my opinion) when the sin is not just failing to live up to God's righteousness, but when the sin is either what society also would abhor, or is against God — like true idolatry or blasphemy. Now I probably actually stand closer to "just failing to live up to God's righteousness" than the other as a position on this, but I think I see reason to be less critical of those who allow for more as long as they do not arrive at acts orchestrated by a Jezebel.

And you need to live according to what you believe Christ is requiring of you. If you feel compelled to worship where there is less likelihood of certain kinds of sins being present among the congregation, then you probably should take steps in that direction.

This may be at least partly like Paul's discussion about those with stronger or weaker faith. His point there was not so much to encourage everyone to be stronger in faith, but rather to allow for those whose faith is not the same as ours in particular things, whether we think of ourselves as the stronger or weaker in the circumstances.

And while I talk a good talk for those that would argue to have "stronger faith," I am not sure that I am there. Just able to allow for them better than I used to be.
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Old 07-31-2017, 03:09 PM   #84
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The "board of trustees," for example, amends the church bylaws . . . . To make matters worse, said bylaws were amended behind closed doors without publishing the changes to the church. If you didn't read the bylaws after every trustee meeting, you would never know about such changes.

. . . .

One person who DID confront the "untrustees" were told to basically "sit down and shut up." That has a familiar ring, doesn't it?

. . . .

How do you dig out of this mess? Leave? Stay, stand and speak the truth? The Bible hasn't changed. You have to start somewhere. Who is going to start? The leadership has failed the members and try to hide their failures. The leaders failed to obey God's word. Members who stand up and speak are shut down. Doesn't say much for Christian leaders does it? But we knew that.
I separate this from the other because it would be entirely too long with it (as if it wasn't anyway).

I think that this still falls within the mud that is the assembly as opposed to the spiritual pure "body of Christ."

It is probably poor that the decisions were in closed session. I can agree with it being a mostly closed discussion to a point. But it eventually needs to be aired before it arrives at the spiritual equivalent of "it seems good to the Holy Spirit and to us . . ." and is codified. That does not mean that everyone will be on board if it is done right. But just because everyone is not on board is not proof that the decision is wrong. And if someone wants to make a stink about it, Paul was firm in a few cases to simply tell someone to get with the program (Peter, for one). Alternately they are free to attend somewhere else. It is part of the elders' job to maintain peace in the assembly. Someone who wants to make a stink is not making peace. If they will not cease, then the alternative is not to coddle them.

Of course, it is impossible to layer what I just said over the example you just gave. Insufficient details. And I would admit that the front end was probably a little too secretive. But that does not mean their conclusion and position was simply wrong or to be argued about . . . or told off about it.

Complicated. And that is the reason that the church is not simply one big happy assembly. And it could be that God is very happy for the ability that the weak/strong in faith have to meet regularly where they are not distracted by problems that the other side would make for them.

Sure it would be best if there was a perfect way to define acceptable v unacceptable, meat v no meat; etc., but it is not there. And it would be ideal if we could all agree enough to meet together in one assembly no matter what we think about any of it. But as it is obvious that there are people who think differently about it, then if we are forced to have only one version, then what do we do about those who think so differently that they feel as if they don't belong. That feel like they have a need to leave and meet elsewhere? Then we have defined the LRC-equivalent of "nowhere else to go on with the Lord."
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Old 07-31-2017, 03:59 PM   #85
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You example of an unmarried couple living together is a classic example.

For example, if we are talking about a couple that is openly living together but wanting to be fully accepted into the fellowship.

And there will be assemblies that are more on the side of accepting believers in more cases despite "certain" sins than other assemblies.

Where is the line for exclusion?
In my LC's, we attempted to practice both inclusion and exclusion.

We would allow most anyone to meet with us if they desired. That would include behaving drunks and gays.

If there was some open sin, like living together without the marriage commitment, we would ask them not to partake the bread and wine at the Lord's Supper. We would also fellowship with them the importance of marriage.

Occasionally, we had some unruly ones, and they were "marked out" by the elders asking them not to speak in the meetings.
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Old 08-01-2017, 02:05 PM   #86
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I separate this from the other because it would be entirely too long with it (as if it wasn't anyway).

I think that this still falls within the mud that is the assembly as opposed to the spiritual pure "body of Christ."

It is probably poor that the decisions were in closed session. I can agree with it being a mostly closed discussion to a point. But it eventually needs to be aired before it arrives at the spiritual equivalent of "it seems good to the Holy Spirit and to us . . ." and is codified. That does not mean that everyone will be on board if it is done right. But just because everyone is not on board is not proof that the decision is wrong. And if someone wants to make a stink about it, Paul was firm in a few cases to simply tell someone to get with the program (Peter, for one). Alternately they are free to attend somewhere else. It is part of the elders' job to maintain peace in the assembly. Someone who wants to make a stink is not making peace. If they will not cease, then the alternative is not to coddle them.
There was a challenge, but it was private meet with the "trustees", a request for information, and an attempt to communicate their concerns. No demands have been made. The meet was followed up in writing with scriptural support and concerns for the consequences of disobedience to God's word. Nothing public. The trustees reacted poorly to the one who told them the truth, so the stink is on them. Today, maybe 95% of the members have no idea what the trustees did. And it's not like the unmarried couple/s, living together are hiding. It's open, common knowledge... unmarried couple/s sitting together on the front row, taking communion. All in all, it seems that it's being handled in a more dignified manner by the membership than by the leadership.

Leaving the assembly is always an option, and they know this. No one is asking to be coddled. Several who meet there, not as members, are hesitant to join themselves to such a church. So at this point, things are outwardly pretty quiet. However, "quiet" is not the standard.
Quote:

Of course, it is impossible to layer what I just said over the example you just gave. Insufficient details. And I would admit that the front end was probably a little too secretive. But that does not mean their conclusion and position was simply wrong or to be argued about . . . or told off about it.

Complicated. And that is the reason that the church is not simply one big happy assembly. And it could be that God is very happy for the ability that the weak/strong in faith have to meet regularly where they are not distracted by problems that the other side would make for them.

Sure it would be best if there was a perfect way to define acceptable v unacceptable, meat v no meat; etc., but it is not there. And it would be ideal if we could all agree enough to meet together in one assembly no matter what we think about any of it. But as it is obvious that there are people who think differently about it, then if we are forced to have only one version, then what do we do about those who think so differently that they feel as if they don't belong. That feel like they have a need to leave and meet elsewhere? Then we have defined the LRC-equivalent of "nowhere else to go on with the Lord."
Some things are defined. It's not a matter of what we think, but what God thinks and has written in his Word. We're not talking about the eating of meat. Rather, sin in the camp.

Today's "church" is full of sin. Whereas, God is Holy. God is clean. God is righteous. The church leadership isn't preaching God's Holiness, His Righteousness. The gospel of salvation, yes...maybe. But Jesus came to save his people from their sins and on this, the church is virtually silent. Today's church leaders are more concerned about numbers, financial contributions, and staying off the front page of the newspaper.

If the church was preaching what I'll call the "full gospel" it would be different. Regardless of all the good works, good sermons, etc., ultimately what good is it?

The more important question to me is "How do we get from today's church to the Bride of Christ, who is without spot or wrinkle or any such thing...the church to which Jesus will return and claim as his Bride?" How? I just don't see it. What would have to happen? Has today's church gone so far down this path that...what...how does this work?

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Old 08-02-2017, 05:10 AM   #87
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Nell,

If the person who "spoke up," even in private, laid out their scriptures, complete with scriptural warnings (according to their understanding) and consider it to be "the truth," as it appears that you do, then there does not appear to be a desire to discover truth, but to force their understanding upon others whose understanding is different.

Not a whole lot different than simply declaring that two or three descriptions concerning the segment of the universal church being named by the city in which it is found to be a rule concerning the name and nature of separate assemblies, or the fact that words have been translated in a certain way to be proof that women should or should not be second-class "citizens" of the church.

And you know exactly how a church should respond with respect to the particular issue why? Because you have more theological training than those that concluded differently?

What was the position towards an unmarried, cohabitating couple in general? Can't attend? Or just can't become official members. From a group of people who too often think of "official" membership as being a man-made construct.

Besides, what did Paul say about individual purity for singles? He wasn't mamby-pamby, but he didn't lay down a law like what he did concerning that one in Corinth. It was a more pastoral discussion. Just said they should marry. Didn't state it as three options: 1) avoid each other like the plague, 2) marry, or 3) get tossed from the church.

My point is not that the leaders of that church were clearly right. Rather that they are in a territory full of apparently contradictory positions. That the path forward is not simply remain with the dogmas of the past because they have been held for centuries. That is how we ended up with the patriarchal positions that are claimed to be so "right" because they have been held for centuries.

And when you come to the leadership with a well- rehearsed statement of position that is wrapped in allegedly biblical edicts about what will happen to you if you do not capitulate, then you have not attempted to seek truth or understand how they came to the opposite position. You are demanding retraction. It is an attempt at a coup.

Asking them to either cease that kind of discussion or go elsewhere is probably the right thing for the elders to do.
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Old 08-02-2017, 07:15 AM   #88
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Nell,

If the person who "spoke up," even in private, laid out their scriptures, complete with scriptural warnings (according to their understanding) and consider it to be "the truth," as it appears that you do, then there does not appear to be a desire to discover truth, but to force their understanding upon others whose understanding is different.

Not a whole lot different than simply declaring that two or three descriptions concerning the segment of the universal church being named by the city in which it is found to be a rule concerning the name and nature of separate assemblies, or the fact that words have been translated in a certain way to be proof that women should or should not be second-class "citizens" of the church.

And you know exactly how a church should respond with respect to the particular issue why? Because you have more theological training than those that concluded differently?

What was the position towards an unmarried, cohabitating couple in general? Can't attend? Or just can't become official members. From a group of people who too often think of "official" membership as being a man-made construct.

Besides, what did Paul say about individual purity for singles? He wasn't mamby-pamby, but he didn't lay down a law like what he did concerning that one in Corinth. It was a more pastoral discussion. Just said they should marry. Didn't state it as three options: 1) avoid each other like the plague, 2) marry, or 3) get tossed from the church.

My point is not that the leaders of that church were clearly right. Rather that they are in a territory full of apparently contradictory positions. That the path forward is not simply remain with the dogmas of the past because they have been held for centuries. That is how we ended up with the patriarchal positions that are claimed to be so "right" because they have been held for centuries.

And when you come to the leadership with a well- rehearsed statement of position that is wrapped in allegedly biblical edicts about what will happen to you if you do not capitulate, then you have not attempted to seek truth or understand how they came to the opposite position. You are demanding retraction. It is an attempt at a coup.

Asking them to either cease that kind of discussion or go elsewhere is probably the right thing for the elders to do.
"IF" that's what happened...it didn't. As I said, no demands, no hostility, no coup, no "biblical edicts", no demands for capitulation ON EITHER SIDE. As I said, it was an attempt to communicate. The worst case scenario you described leaves no way for communication to occur between leadership and membership, short of hostility. I don't know how to solve every problem, but I do know where to start. Communication. God's Word, and a desire by all concerned to "hear" one another. Documentation is for the purpose of establishing every word as to accuracy because memories fade. The world revolves around documentation to clarify what was said. Is that a problem?

What you describe may have happened somewhere, but not in my example.

My point is: When Christians meet as the church the words of the Bible should mean something. Members of the Body of Christ should know that standard by hearing from a preacher and/or their own personal study. There is a biblical standard for resolving conflicts in the church. This should be followed but rarely is.

Quoting the Bible is like a lawyer citing case law or statutory law. The words aren't those of the lawyer, but the law. Don't shoot the lawyer.

And don't shoot the Christian who quotes the Bible.

This discussion has gone off topic.

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Old 08-02-2017, 10:42 AM   #89
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Sorry if it misunderstood. But when it comes to determining what the Bible says and what it means, it should be obvious that it is not always a simple thing. "In the day you eat thereof" they did not surely die. We had to think about that for a while and understand that instead the process of dying began. Or it was spiritually that we died.

And are we sure that it was a correct assumption that Adam and Eve would otherwise live forever, or just a vey long time?

You get the point. When you make statements like "The trustees reacted poorly to the one who told them the truth" it appears that the interpretation of the ones making the case is presumed correct. But is it really the truth? Are we sure? Just because we have read it that way for years, even centuries?

For example, who is Paul taking about when he comments on someone building with gold, sliver, precious stones, wood, hay, and stubble?

I had more, but I will leave it at that for now. I may have misunderstood what you meant, but you must admit that it was not entirely ridiculous to presume otherwise.

I would suggest that the church was much more tolerant in the beginning that it became over the centuries. That does not mean that the apparent softening in this day is consistent with where the church was at the beginning. But should we simply stick with the addendums of rules that we have added over the years? Should we be in the business of punishing and scolding, or in the business of beckoning and encouraging? Should we be busy trying to get it all right and forcing it on everyone else, or busy trying to live righteously. Both in personal righteousness and in the "love one another" acts of justice.
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Old 08-02-2017, 12:20 PM   #90
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Sorry if it misunderstood. But when it comes to determining what the Bible says and what it means, it should be obvious that it is not always a simple thing. "In the day you eat thereof" they did not surely die. We had to think about that for a while and understand that instead the process of dying began. Or it was spiritually that we died.

And are we sure that it was a correct assumption that Adam and Eve would otherwise live forever, or just a vey long time?

You get the point. When you make statements like "The trustees reacted poorly to the one who told them the truth" it appears that the interpretation of the ones making the case is presumed correct. But is it really the truth? Are we sure? Just because we have read it that way for years, even centuries?

For example, who is Paul taking about when he comments on someone building with gold, sliver, precious stones, wood, hay, and stubble?

I had more, but I will leave it at that for now. I may have misunderstood what you meant, but you must admit that it was not entirely ridiculous to presume otherwise.
These examples are valid for discussion, but not a matter of sin. They are not a matter I would take to the church leadership.

Quote:
I would suggest that the church was much more tolerant in the beginning that it became over the centuries. That does not mean that the apparent softening in this day is consistent with where the church was at the beginning. But should we simply stick with the addendums of rules that we have added over the years? Should we be in the business of punishing and scolding, or in the business of beckoning and encouraging? Should we be busy trying to get it all right and forcing it on everyone else, or busy trying to live righteously. Both in personal righteousness and in the "love one another" acts of justice.
The organized church has never been the standard. The Bible was written to be the standard for the church, not the other way around. Christians are exhorted to obey the commands in the Bible. Whatever today's organized church is, or isn't, can't be the determining factor for what God has called the church.

Should we be busy trying to get it all right? Is that a bad idea?
and forcing it on everyone else? No.
Should we be in the business of punishing and scolding? No.
or in the business of beckoning and encouraging? Of course. Yes.
Live righteously? Certainly.

These are extremes (on the negative end), and not the only options for living as a Christian who cares for the truth as well as members of the Body of Christ. No Christian I know aspires to force, punishment and scolding as a way to communicate with other Christians.

You live your life, before the Lord, walking in His light, living righteously as best you can. When you fail, when you sin, confess and repent. With others, you love them, speak the truth in love, fellowship the Word, help them to walk in the light of the Word. Receive mutually from one another.

When the church leadership acts secretly about matters of concern to the Body, you say something to them...if the Lord leads.

Forcing, punishing, scolding...of course not. Yet, should we turn a blind eye to sin in the camp? Sometimes you need to tell someone something they don't want to hear. You can beckon and encourage them with something they don't want to hear. You can love them enough to tell them the truth (see the 10 Commandments).

Speak the truth in love, and here is the truth to which I refer:
1. You shall have no other gods before Me.
2. You shall not make idols.
3. You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain.
4. Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. (Old testament)
5. Honor your father and your mother.
6. You shall not murder.
7. You shall not commit adultery.
8. You shall not steal.
9. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
10.You shall not covet (your neighbor's wife)

Some of these are preached: murder, stealing, lying. People need to hear them all.

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Old 08-03-2017, 03:34 PM   #91
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These examples are valid for discussion, but not a matter of sin. They are not a matter I would take to the church leadership.
Similar to a recent comment to Evangelical, you are looking at the details of the thing provided to find a comparative level of sin when I am pointing to the very purpose of various passages of scripture to which we point for particular direction. Are the passages that we point to intended to purge people from the assembly for their violations, or to challenge the persons within the assembly. Even where Paul lists some pretty significant moral failings to be later followed by positives (sometimes referred to as fruits of the Spirit), he does not (that I can recall) declare that those that may still have issues with any particular one of them should be cast from the assembly.

It is true that there are many things that are specifically mentioned in drawing bright lines between righteousness and unrighteousness. Yet we all still find ourselves on the unrighteous side of things in some things at least on occasion. Do we really believe that the fact of failing at something, even being able to legitimately call it a "besetting sin," means that we should be excluded from the assembly? Always and without fail (in other words we just do it without consideration)? And if we think that we should, do we simply presume that if they are specifically listed then we must do something about them, and if they are not, they are "OK"? Then how do you deal with gluttony or drunkenness. They are on at least some of the lists. Every fat person should be tossed. Anyone who is ever drunk should be tossed.

The only example in the NT was of someone who was engaged in sexual sin that was not even tolerated by the heathen/pagans. That means that allowing such a sin in the open was a diminished testimony to the outsiders with respect to the church. While there is something to be said for having a better testimony than the world on things, remember that it is effectively lost on them to the extent that they don't think it is something of importance. They note the cheats in the marketplace. They notice the cons and swindlers. They notice the violent predators (murders and others). But they don't care if it is not on their list. Having a more stringent list is not important to them.

Don't think that I am saying that the Christian standard should not be higher, or allowing the world's standards to be ours. But in terms of getting us from darkness to light, then to sanctification, it is not a flash in the pan. It takes time.

Therefore with respect to the assembly (not the fully-grown body of Christ that is ready to rule and reign in the New J) if we do not allow for sinners, we simply rely on cutting everyone off for them to grow. To find the answers in the Bible on their own. That is what tossing them does. Note that in all of the NT, there is only one case of someone being tossed. It was for a very specific sin that was recognized as such by the entire world. And when the sin ceased, he was allowed back in. That was for the testimony in front of the world as much as anything else.

But once you don't have that particular stigma (sin in the world's eyes) how do you draw the line? If I think your should understand it as sin and just stop, then that's it.

We are not talking about the nature of the body of Christ. Or the true universal church. We are talking about who is allowed to come an worship and learn.

Getting too picky about who should be allowed makes for an interesting altar call. We'll assume that you allow any kind of heathen in the door. At least for a while. But when they finally respond to that Baptist-like altar call and pray that prayer and declare their belief in Jesus, before they get away from the altar, we should then hand them a list of no-nos. Point out that we know that they are already violating two or three of them. Then let them know that now that they are in, they can only keep coming in if they just stop those right now. If we find out they are not obeying, they are out.

Funny that for all the grotesque things described related to certain churches as contained in those letters in Revelation, they had some pretty severe problems going on there. And no one was excommunicated. And no lampstands were removed.

Say your wayward couple gets married. Then 5 years later, they divorce. Are we excluding them from the assembly after the divorce? If not, other than a temporary legal status, how do you differentiate between them and another couple that lives together faithfully for 10 years then splits? I understand the arguments for the claim of a more complete commitment if it is legally binding. But if it is about having a wedding ceremony, that does not always happen anyway.

I am not advocating for the practice. But when it comes to how we view the people and treat them, what is the sin? Is it part of the 10 commandments? Actually, I do not believe it is. Is it the more generic "fornication"? It might be. But that is a sin with somewhat vague definition.

What is their status before God? One verse declares that a man who simply has one encounter with a prostitute is "one flesh with her." If this couple is consistently together like a husband and wife would be, are we sure that they are not married in God's eyes even if the law allows them split more easily than a "legally" married couple?

Again, I am not trying to just allow everything. But there is a difference between what we hold to for our own purposes, and what we insist upon for others within the context of a group of sinners (we all are sinners) that are on a pathway to sanctification, not a magical transformation into sanctification.

So, are we sure that in the context of the assembly, there is a clear in/out with respect to the sin that has started this particular bit of exchange.

I agree that the elders have a responsibility to make a decision as to how they feel to act on the situation. And we may not agree with the decision that they came to. I actually think that they should have probably made a more uniform decision one way or the other. One decision with a "grandfathering" contrary to it is really pretty poor. But when you are sure that you have the "truth" about what they should have done, I suggest that the "truth" is not so simple. It is not just that something that is sin and is named on a list should be excluded. The one stated example of exclusion was for something much more severe. And some pretty sever sins that are actually on some lists did not get a stated exclusion.

So I would suggest that an Acts 15 council is not unreasonable. And while we might like to say that everyone should have a say, or get to help make the decision, there is no evidence that just anyone was able to speak at that meeting, or that more than the leadership stepped aside to pray and consider how to rule.

Did this particular assembly do that? Maybe. Even if done privately it could qualify. I did not say "does qualify." I really can't say. And neither can you. But at the same time, if you feel that they should have ruled differently and don't think you can meet under those circumstances, then it is upon you to separate and meet elsewhere. And do so without spreading rumors and hearsay about how poorly they decided. (Not saying anything about you personally.)

Where I meet/attend is just a few blocks from a UMC assembly that has specifically been intentional about allowing gays. Now I do not know everything about the UMC's official position, or this particular assemblies following of it or altering of it, so I cannot comment in detail. But if we presume that our position toward people who have an attraction toward the same sex rather than for the opposite should simply be to exclude them, then how do you expect to ever hope to gain their faith in Christ and possibly their rejection of sin? And even though they may live an entire life with that attraction, is that sufficient to exclude them? Or does it require actual homosexual acts? Does living under the same roof without those acts qualify as something to exclude? Does admitting that you have the attraction result in exclusion? Do we presume that living all of life with the attraction cannot be someone's "thorn in the flesh"?

And do we consider an occasional lapse to be grounds for exclusion?

I do not have the answers. And I do not attend that assembly. But they are church. They are not just a country club that has tax-deductible dues. Do I think that everything they teach is entirely correct? Probably not. Even on other things. (For one, they are of Arminian theology, and while I do not think that it is entirely incorrect, as taught it seems beyond the scope of what I read in the Bible.) And the RCC that I pass about a mile before I get to the assembly I attend is also church. As are the Baptists, the Presbyterians, Pentecostals (even those of oneness theology), Anglicans, Lutherans, etc.

When you speak of the church from God's perspective, you are ignoring that it is also the assembly of the broken and the curious. Those are not the same use of the word. They are two sets with significant overlap. But not complete overlap. It is difficult to achieve the mission of the church here on earth if we are so forcefully pure that we mess-up the mission trying to appear perfect.

Preach about what is sin. Help even the really good among us realize where they still fall short. The parts of a sermon that get people to thinking about repentance should not just be aimed at the unbelievers and seriously backslidden. We all need to have those little questions put to us that make us realize that we are still not there. Not perfect. Still in need of that part of the prayer where we say "Forgive us our trespasses . . . ."
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Old 08-05-2017, 06:41 AM   #92
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Preach about what is sin. Help even the really good among us realize where they still fall short. The parts of a sermon that get people to thinking about repentance should not just be aimed at the unbelievers and seriously backslidden. We all need to have those little questions put to us that make us realize that we are still not there. Not perfect. Still in need of that part of the prayer where we say "Forgive us our trespasses . . . ."
I believe I said that already.

Your waaaaaaa tooooo loooooooong post seems to take the same position in more of the same words than I have time to address. I will confess that I did not spend a lot of time with what has turned into a mini-series. I apologize that I cannot continue a discussion that appears to be at a stalemate. We are not that far apart.

Sorry. I know you spent a lot of time with your post and I apologize for being unable to give it due consideration. My mind is made up and so is yours so we should leave it there. Thank you for the dialogue. (We're off topic to boot.)

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Old 08-07-2017, 09:21 AM   #93
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My mind is made up and so is yours so we should leave it there. Thank you for the dialogue. (We're off topic to boot.)
And that is why I kept at it. My mind is only made up to be open when it comes to the earthly working of the church (assembly) and how we interact with people of all kinds, both Christian and non-Christian. Having your mind made up (closed) is how an Acts 15 council will never again happen. We're smarter than they were and do not need to think about it.

But I agree. If your mind is closed, then we are done.
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Old 08-08-2017, 07:55 AM   #94
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And that is why I kept at it. My mind is only made up to be open when it comes to the earthly working of the church (assembly) and how we interact with people of all kinds, both Christian and non-Christian. Having your mind made up (closed) is how an Acts 15 council will never again happen. We're smarter than they were and do not need to think about it.

But I agree. If your mind is closed, then we are done.
I never said my mind was "closed" and I cannot leave your final word as accurate. "Closed" is your word...not mine. That is a misrepresentation. I have made up my mind and have no reason to change my mind based on our conversation. I believe the earthly working/s of today's church have created a mess to the extent that in some cases scripture is relegated to a place less than authoritative and more akin to a "good idea." I'm not attributing this position to you but it is what I can see going on today.

Luke 17:3 Watch yourselves! If your brother sins, rebuke him. If he repents, forgive him.

Leviticus 19:17 Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thine heart: thou shalt in any wise rebuke thy neighbour, and not suffer sin upon him.

Luke 17:3 and Leviticus 19:17 seem as clear as "thou shalt not commit adultery." This truth should be spoken to the people. I don't mean to beat people over the head with it, which you again seem to misinterpret my position. According to Leviticus 17, rebuking a brother in sin is to love him. (Parents rebuke their children because they love them.)

So, as to "how we interact with people of all kinds, both Christian and non-Christian" the Word is clear about this too, as you have presented and I have agreed. John 15:13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

In fact, the example assembly I cited, the pastor spoke very recently from I Cor. presenting what the Word says on sexual sin in the church. I believe this is the best approach. Present what the Bible says, and then you have a choice to make. You make up your own mind by the enlightenment and conviction of the Holy Spirit. He didn't give an ultimatum. To me it's not about what the church is going to do, but what are YOU, the sinning brother/couple going to do? This service ended with the taking of communion.

The Word applies to all. Me included.

Nell
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Old 08-08-2017, 03:56 PM   #95
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It seems a bit of semantics, but I will take your word for it.

As for you comment on adultery, I do not understand that as being the sin undertaken by an unmarried couple. Not saying it should simply be ignored, especially if it is openly stated as potentially temporary and transitory — as opposed to effectively permanent despite the lack of government certification or church ceremony.

I do not disagree that there are places where the church has some responsibility to call its own with respect to sin. The question is which sin. And in an environment in which the whole of the participants are not necessarily Christian, it becomes even more interesting. I understand that you don't just let sin remain. But in the era of the writing of the law on the hearts and the understanding that sin does not simply cease (as a whole), it is not as simple as telling everyone who does something you think is a sin (even if you know it is a sin) to stop it because it is sin or get out. Or writing bylaws to define every sin that everyone thinks is "one of those sins."

But we disagree, so that can be that.
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Old 08-09-2017, 01:02 PM   #96
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It seems that the current discussion on this thread has run its course, so I’d like to return to the first post and subject it to a more thorough and critical look. My critique is quite lengthy, but its length is necessary to adequately cover the excerpt I’ve chosen:

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If the meaning of sexism meant misogyny then I have no problem with that. The topic however usually reverts to "women can't be leaders" but the two matters are different issues. I note that your post started off talking about misogyny but then reverted to matters of women in church leadership. If "women can't be leaders" is the same as misogyny then Jesus was sexist for choosing only 12 male church leaders and in not allowing Mary, a woman, to touch Him after His resurrection, but allowing Thomas, a male disciple, to touch Him.

Therefore in the first church, the group of 12 disciples, the voices of women were not heard and no woman was involved in the decision making of the church. The Last Supper, Jesus shared only with his closest 12, and the women close to Jesus did not participate nor were they invited.

One would think that if Jesus was truly a social reformer, intending to bring in equality between the sexes, he would have included at least one woman on his team and would not be shy about doing so. He had no problem being persecuted for meeting with tax collectors and prostitutes, yet he never reversed hundreds of years of Jewish tradition. Still, there were many women close to Jesus and loved by Jesus, Mary, Martha, etc. The thing is, they did not have to be included in high level decision making, and furthermore, they were happy about that and did not complain about it. That kind of woman that God prefers is described in 1 Peter 3:4 You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God.
These are the things that I found problematic in these first three paragraphs:
  1. A better translation of Jesus’ words to Mary, I think, would be those in the New American Standard Bible (“Stop clinging to Me”). As to Thomas, Jesus requested that he do more than simply touch Him, according to the meanings of the Greek words. My understanding, then, is that Jesus did not want Mary to keep clinging to Him, not that He didn’t want her to touch Him at all. As to Thomas, Jesus requested that he do much more than simply touch Him, but even to go so far as to insert or thrust his hand into His side.

  2. Trying to support some kind of male favoritism on Jesus’ part by comparing His interactions with Mary and Thomas as regards touching is, to me, a strange argument, especially when the definitions of the words are taken into account: Mary, a woman who loved Jesus intensely, was clinging to Him Who had returned from death, and Jesus was ready for her (a woman) to take the news of the gospel to the disciples (as the first one Jesus chose to carry the good news—even to men). As to Thomas, he is often known today as “doubting Thomas,” because he wouldn’t believe the gospel even though others were telling him that Jesus had actually appeared to them. As a side note, I don’t think that the Bible records that Thomas actually touched Jesus in any kind of way. After all, he wouldn’t need to when Jesus was standing right in front of him with the wounds.

  3. I found the parts about Jesus and the church very difficult to follow. It’s not at all clear what was meant by the church, especially with regard to its inception. My understanding of church is that it had not begun by the time that Jesus chose the twelve. If so, then Jesus did not choose twelve church leaders, male or female. Also, all of the twelve He chose were not church leaders, I believe, then or later. I don’t think that many of them were leaders in a church, even though we don’t know all that much about them. Even if the church in general was meant, what about Judas?

  4. The fact is that women as well as men spoke to Jesus (their voices were heard), and He spoke to them. The assertion that the voices of women were not heard is, to me, absurd in the extreme. In addition to women conversing with Jesus, women were heard in the church as well, regardless of when it started. Even if what was meant about the church is that it began as late as Pentecost, the voices of women were heard there—prophesying, right along with the men. I simply cannot go too far with this point, since I cannot imagine anyone actually believing this assertion—even the one who wrote it.

  5. The second paragraph begins with “Therefore.” It is unclear to what this word connects and what sense it makes in the presentation. When I try to make sense of the argument, here is what I come up with: “If women can’t be leaders is the same as misogyny” (false), “then Jesus was sexist for choosing only 12 male church leaders” (false) and in not allowing Mary, a woman, to touch Him after His resurrection (false), but allowing Thomas, a male disciple, to touch Him (false). (The part about Thomas could be true, except that Jesus didn’t allow him to touch; He commanded him to see and to put into. Plus, we don’t know if he did or not. I might be niggling too much here, so I will just concede that this last one could be deemed true.) In my reading, then, since all (or almost all) of the statements made are false, then the “therefore” introduces what cannot be; thereby undermining the whole argument.

  6. To put the twelve disciples in apposition to the first church, as if only they are the first church, is false on two counts: the church was not yet (in my opinion), and the church was larger than just the twelve. One can read the sentence this way: “Therefore, in the first church, the one consisting of only the twelve disciples, the voices of women were not heard ….” I’ll just state that it is difficult for me to take seriously what was written when presented in such a fashion.

  7. If the church was not yet in existence with Jesus and the first twelve disciples (as many or most believe), then there were no affairs of the church to discuss or decide—for males or females. If the church was in existence, how can anyone know who was in which meetings or what was discussed, including whether or not it was high level?

  8. Regarding the Last Supper being mentioned, seemingly as a supportive example of male favoritism on the part of Jesus, it occurred before the crucifixion, not to mention before the resurrection. In other words, I believe that this was pre-church; if anyone believes otherwise, then they can ignore my comments about church timing.

  9. The statement that “the women close to Jesus did not participate” in the Last Supper is not something that is knowable and certainly not something that the Bible supports so as to be stated emphatically. I realize that the Bible does not mention any women being at the Last Supper; by the same token, it does not state that women were not there. (Does the presentation acknowledge this by leaving the door open for women to be there who were not “close to Jesus”?) Many realize that the Bible does not mention every detail about an event and that the gospels themselves present different perspectives of the same events with different details. My understanding of Jewish tradition causes me to think that women might have been there in at least a serving capacity, even if they were not mentioned. If so, then, they would have been participating, contrary to what was stated. In addition, my understanding is that the Jewish Passover was for the whole family as a remembrance and continues so to this day as the Seder. Surely the suggestion is not being made that the Lord’s Table communion, in remembrance of Jesus, should just be done by Christian men.

  10. The presentation suggests that the male disciples were involved with high-level decision-making with Jesus, making the males sound really important somehow. Although definitions of “high level” probably differ, I cannot recall an instance of anyone, male or female, being involved in what I would label high-level decision-making with Jesus. Maybe there was, and I just cannot think of one. My main point is that the Son of God did not really need anyone to be involved in such. I do recall Peter making a few runs at being involved in decision-making with Jesus, and it didn’t turn out well for Him—except, of course, he probably learned some valuable lessons from trying.

  11. Here’s what I believe about the statement, “One would think that if Jesus was truly a social reformer, intending to bring in equality between the sexes, he would have included at least one woman on his team …”: First, Jesus was much more than a mere social reformer. Second, His mission cannot be boiled down to bringing in equality between the sexes. Third, He did include women “on his team.” Therefore, for me, these phrases are flawed and carelessly presented. To bring Jesus down to the level of a mere man and to bring down His mission to just bringing in equality between the sexes, as this writing did for me, is inadvisable, even when couched in such a hypothetical as was used.

  12. Next, we have this statement: “He had no problem being persecuted for meeting with tax collectors and prostitutes, yet he never reversed hundreds of years of Jewish tradition.” (The statement seems to argue against itself.) The very fact that He met with such persons was a reversal. I am not well schooled in Jewish traditions of that day; but, from what I’ve read and heard, many rabbis during the intertestamental period (hundreds of years) were extremely chauvinistic, which would have carried over into the time of Jesus. I think that Jewish women were treated basically like property and were supposed to be, more or less, seen and not heard. After reading what was written, the first thing I thought about was Jesus speaking privately to the Samaritan woman at the well. This was so radical that, when His disciples returned, they marveled that He was speaking to a woman! In addition, during His dialog with her, He revealed that He was the Messiah, and I think that this was the first time the Bible records Him doing so with anyone—male or female. This brought salvation to a town filled with people with whom Jews were to have no dealings. He was definitely operating outside the bounds of traditional Jewish culture, and I imagine that just this one episode would have, at a minimum, reversed the attitudes of the disciples and the townspeople. If you think about how this kind of news travels, I imagine that just this one discussion with a sinful Samaritan woman reversed many people’s traditional views.

  13. The following sentence also has a problem: “Still, there were many women close to Jesus and loved by Jesus, Mary, Martha, etc.” In my reading of this, there were many unnamed women who were close to Jesus, and these women were loved by Jesus, Mary, Martha, etc. Who were these unnamed women who were close to Jesus? Mary, Martha, and their like are, apparently, ruled out. It is, therefore, impossible to know who these many women were, since the ones who might normally be thought of as being close to Him have been taken out of consideration, along with others like them (with an “etc.”). In this conundrum that has been created, maybe the only way out would be for Mary, Martha, etc. to have loved themselves.

  14. According to the presentation, females of that day were happy with their lot, implying, I think, that today’s Christian females should be happy with theirs. Without getting into how anyone might claim to know the thoughts and feelings of females living over two thousand years ago, I might point out what can be known and was not mentioned: There is evidence that not all the males who lived back then were happy with their situations. The Bible shows us at least two males who were involved in jockeying to improve their positions in Jesus’ kingdom, and Christ was not positively impressed. He ended up His talk about it this way:
    Calling them to Himself, Jesus said to them, “You know that those who are recognized as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them; and their great men exercise authority over them. But it is not this way among you, but whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant; and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.” (Mark 10:42–45, NASB)
    The next example that comes to mind is this: After the resurrection and after Jesus’ appearances to His disciples, Peter (even after having gone through the boasting before, and the bitterness after, his denial of Jesus) still had the effrontery to question Jesus with, “What shall this man do?” with regard to John. Apparently, this level of involvement in decision-making was “above his pay grade,” because Jesus told him to more or less mind his own business and focus on following Him. Wouldn’t we all, both males and females, be better off taking this advice (which was actually a command)?

I have done my best to try to resolve the ambiguities in the quoted portion of the first post. I probably misunderstood some of it, as it was a struggle to try and follow the logic (or absence thereof). It’s as if Jesus, the twelve, some women, and the church were put in a pot and stirred together with some of the activities mentioned in the Bible, resulting in a stew that was not palatable. I hope that these abbreviated comments will prove helpful in some way to those who read them and that I haven’t inadvertently fallen into error myself or been unclear in my own writing.
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Old 08-09-2017, 01:25 PM   #97
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John,

Welcome back. Very good analysis. Or at least attempt at analyzing something as unclear as what you had to work with.

As I was reading I was struck by your 5th point.
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The second paragraph begins with “Therefore.”
in my studies of things Nee and Lee (from whom our Evangelical friend has learned), I have seen this kind of thing all to often.

All it seems to take is a few sentences strung together and there is now the basis for a "therefore." By saying that, the groundwork is declared to be complete and accurate. Irrelevant that it is hardly on topic or ignores the clear meaning of any scripture (if any) that has been used.

Might as well have said "Therefore, according to the inerrant word of God . . . ." since that is a stronger-sounding claim of certainty, even if hollow and meaningless.
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Old 08-09-2017, 05:55 PM   #98
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[*]I found the parts about Jesus and the church very difficult to follow. It’s not at all clear what was meant by the church, especially with regard to its inception. My understanding of church is that it had not begun by the time that Jesus chose the twelve. If so, then Jesus did not choose twelve church leaders, male or female. Also, all of the twelve He chose were not church leaders, I believe, then or later. I don’t think that many of them were leaders in a church, even though we don’t know all that much about them. Even if the church in general was meant, what about Judas?
I understand that how we define "church" matters here. To me, if a church is a gathering of believers, then the 12 disciples were a church. Judas would be a tare sowed by Satan.

But whatever we call this group of 12 disciples, e.g. a "pre-church leadership team", the fact remains that it did not include any women.

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[*]The fact is that women as well as men spoke to Jesus (their voices were heard), and He spoke to them. The assertion that the voices of women were not heard is, to me, absurd in the extreme. In addition to women conversing with Jesus, women were heard in the church as well, regardless of when it started. Even if what was meant about the church is that it began as late as Pentecost, the voices of women were heard there—prophesying, right along with the men. I simply cannot go too far with this point, since I cannot imagine anyone actually believing this assertion—even the one who wrote it.
[*]The statement that “the women close to Jesus did not participate” in the Last Supper is not something that is knowable and certainly not something that the Bible supports so as to be stated emphatically. I realize that the Bible does not mention any women being at the Last Supper; by the same token, it does not state that women were not there. (Does the presentation acknowledge this by leaving the door open for women to be there who were not “close to Jesus”?) Many realize that the Bible does not mention every detail about an event and that the gospels themselves present different perspectives of the same events with different details. My understanding of Jewish tradition causes me to think that women might have been there in at least a serving capacity, even if they were not mentioned. If so, then, they would have been participating, contrary to what was stated. In addition, my understanding is that the Jewish Passover was for the whole family as a remembrance and continues so to this day as the Seder. Surely the suggestion is not being made that the Lord’s Table communion, in remembrance of Jesus, should just be done by Christian men.
The Last Supper was likely held at Mary the mother of John-Mark's house (Acts 12:12). Yet at the last Supper, no women are mentioned so there were no women at the Last Supper, not even Mary at whose house it was held it would seem. At least, none sitting around the table with Christ. Probably the women were serving. If there were, this would have been a breach of protocol at the time and the bible would record it. Whenever a woman broke protocol, the bible records it.

It is because women did not participate in the Last Supper that women have been traditionally forbidden from "holy orders". In Christianity, women traditionally have not been allowed to serve bread and wine.


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[*]The presentation suggests that the male disciples were involved with high-level decision-making with Jesus, making the males sound really important somehow. Although definitions of “high level” probably differ, I cannot recall an instance of anyone, male or female, being involved in what I would label high-level decision-making with Jesus. Maybe there was, and I just cannot think of one. My main point is that the Son of God did not really need anyone to be involved in such. I do recall Peter making a few runs at being involved in decision-making with Jesus, and it didn’t turn out well for Him—except, of course, he probably learned some valuable lessons from trying.
Jesus told his disciples they would sit on 12 thrones and rule the 12 tribes of Israel (Matt 19:28). So no woman would be sitting on thrones it would seem.

This is an argument against a view that God changed His mind in the last days. If God intended in the last days to change His mind about female leadership, then Jesus might have reserved a place for a woman on his leadership team, or reserve a throne for Mary or Martha, for example.


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[*]Here’s what I believe about the statement, “One would think that if Jesus was truly a social reformer, intending to bring in equality between the sexes, he would have included at least one woman on his team …”: First, Jesus was much more than a mere social reformer. Second, His mission cannot be boiled down to bringing in equality between the sexes. Third, He did include women “on his team.” Therefore, for me, these phrases are flawed and carelessly presented. To bring Jesus down to the level of a mere man and to bring down His mission to just bringing in equality between the sexes, as this writing did for me, is inadvisable, even when couched in such a hypothetical as was used.
By team I meant leadership team. The 12 disciples were to rule over the 12 tribes of Israel and also had prominent leadership roles in the early church. There were no women on Jesus's leadership team. At the apostle Paul's conversion he did not consult with any female disciples of Christ. He went to see Peter etc.


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[*]Next, we have this statement: “He had no problem being persecuted for meeting with tax collectors and prostitutes, yet he never reversed hundreds of years of Jewish tradition.” (The statement seems to argue against itself.) The very fact that He met with such persons was a reversal. I am not well schooled in Jewish traditions of that day; but, from what I’ve read and heard, many rabbis during the intertestamental period (hundreds of years) were extremely chauvinistic, which would have carried over into the time of Jesus. I think that Jewish women were treated basically like property and were supposed to be, more or less, seen and not heard. After reading what was written, the first thing I thought about was Jesus speaking privately to the Samaritan woman at the well. This was so radical that, when His disciples returned, they marveled that He was speaking to a woman! In addition, during His dialog with her, He revealed that He was the Messiah, and I think that this was the first time the Bible records Him doing so with anyone—male or female. This brought salvation to a town filled with people with whom Jews were to have no dealings. He was definitely operating outside the bounds of traditional Jewish culture, and I imagine that just this one episode would have, at a minimum, reversed the attitudes of the disciples and the townspeople. If you think about how this kind of news travels, I imagine that just this one discussion with a sinful Samaritan woman reversed many people’s traditional views.
This is not about that, but about female leadership. It is a mistake to think that just because Jesus spoke to a Samaritan woman that he wants women to be church leaders. Everyone knows that Christianity was an improvement from the state of Judaism in regards to breaking Jewish traditions. However this does not mean that Jesus intended women to function equally to men in all roles such as leadership. I believe God's view of gender equality is when both genders are functioning according to:

1 Cor 11:3 The head of every man is Christ, the head of woman is man, and the head of Christ is God

Man's view of gender equality is something like this:

"The head of every man and woman is Christ and man is not the head of the woman"

Jesus could have easily chosen 6 males and 6 females, as he had broken tradition many times before. The fact that he did not means he had a good reason for only men to be his future leaders in the church.


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[*]The following sentence also has a problem: “Still, there were many women close to Jesus and loved by Jesus, Mary, Martha, etc.” In my reading of this, there were many unnamed women who were close to Jesus, and these women were loved by Jesus, Mary, Martha, etc. Who were these unnamed women who were close to Jesus? Mary, Martha, and their like are, apparently, ruled out. It is, therefore, impossible to know who these many women were, since the ones who might normally be thought of as being close to Him have been taken out of consideration, along with others like them (with an “etc.”). In this conundrum that has been created, maybe the only way out would be for Mary, Martha, etc. to have loved themselves.
Jesus would explain his parables to the disciples. Mark 4:34.

When Jesus explained his parables to his disciples privately, were the women present, asking Jesus questions and having Jesus explain to them?

Probably not. This is in accordance with Paul's words that women were to be in silence and learn from their husbands at home.

If Christ had broken protocol by explaining the parables to the women, then this would have been recorded.

We have examples of Christ speaking to women such as the Samaritan woman, but there are no examples of Christ explaining parables or having theological discourse with his female disciples.

"The church did not start as all male and then later become both male and female. Christ's followers were both male and female from the beginning," and yet women were not chosen as leaders. Second, unlike the all-Jewish leadership, "male leadership was perpetuated by those whom Christ initially taught, trained, and to whom He committed the future leadership of His church."[42]

~ James Allen Borland, evangelical professor of biblical studies and theology at Liberty University and former president of the Evangelical Theological Society.
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Old 08-10-2017, 04:54 AM   #99
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The Last Supper was likely held at Mary the mother of John-Mark's house (Acts 12:12).
What does Acts 12:12 have to do with the location of the Last Supper?

The record in the gospels is clear, this was a "large upper room" that the disciples were previously unaware of. Obviously not the house of Mary, the mother of John-Mark.
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Old 08-10-2017, 04:56 AM   #100
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It is because women did not participate in the Last Supper that women have been traditionally forbidden from "holy orders". In Christianity, women traditionally have not been allowed to serve bread and wine.
So then you agree that this is not the fellowship of the Apostles but rather a religious tradition similar to those Jesus condemned.
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Old 08-10-2017, 04:59 AM   #101
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Jesus told his disciples they would sit on 12 thrones and rule the 12 tribes of Israel (Matt 19:28). So no woman would be sitting on thrones it would seem.
Seriously? Would you like to rethink that? Jesus said more about who would and would not be sitting on thrones and why. Making a doctrine based on an inference from a single verse while ignoring many other relevant verses is fatally flawed approach.
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Old 08-10-2017, 05:04 AM   #102
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This is not about that, but about female leadership. It is a mistake to think that just because Jesus spoke to a Samaritan woman that he wants women to be church leaders. Everyone knows that Christianity was an improvement from the state of Judaism in regards to breaking Jewish traditions. However this does not mean that Jesus intended women to function equally to men in all roles such as leadership.
Perhaps the mistake is thinking that God wants any leadership other than Jesus, male or female.

A shepherd is a servant of the owner of the sheep. The NT is very clear that both men and women can serve the Lord. There is no limit to what you can do as a servant -- "move mountains", "greater works than these", etc.
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Old 08-10-2017, 05:10 AM   #103
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"The church did not start as all male and then later become both male and female. Christ's followers were both male and female from the beginning," and yet women were not chosen as leaders. Second, unlike the all-Jewish leadership, "male leadership was perpetuated by those whom Christ initially taught, trained, and to whom He committed the future leadership of His church."[42]

~ James Allen Borland, evangelical professor of biblical studies and theology at Liberty University and former president of the Evangelical Theological Society.
This is a factual observation from which he infers a doctrine. But there are other equally plausible theories that can be inferred.

For example, the church is a hospital based on the parable of the good samaritan. Many damaged believers will be saved with the need of being restored. One primary focus of this damage is on the family. Hence the NT sets up elders as examples to the flock. This is why it is crucial that an elder be the husband of one wife who has led his family well, and it is crucial that the wife of the elder be able to teach and shepherd the sisters.

There is no such requirement to be an evangelist, or prophet, or apostle, or any other gifted member.

But the church is a family of God and as such God wants certain ones to be set forth as a good example to help the rest of the saints.

Instead of viewing elders as "leaders" which is insulting to Jesus, why not just view them as examples to the flock who are able to teach others. There is no "theological discourse" requirement to be an elder, but there is the requirement to be the husband of one wife, to lead your family well, to be of good reputation in the community.
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Old 08-10-2017, 04:56 PM   #104
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So then you agree that this is not the fellowship of the Apostles but rather a religious tradition similar to those Jesus condemned.
The religious traditions in Christianity stemmed from the fellowship of the apostles.

Then it is most likely that the absence of female leadership in those traditions also came from the fellowship of the apostles.

In other words, the religious traditions did not ban female leadership after it was permitted during the time of the apostles.

It simply was not permitted at all during the time of the apostles.

Neither the fellowship of the apostles nor the religious traditions which stemmed from the fellowship of the apostles accepted female leadership.
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Old 08-10-2017, 05:02 PM   #105
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This is a factual observation from which he infers a doctrine. But there are other equally plausible theories that can be inferred.

For example, the church is a hospital based on the parable of the good samaritan. Many damaged believers will be saved with the need of being restored. One primary focus of this damage is on the family. Hence the NT sets up elders as examples to the flock. This is why it is crucial that an elder be the husband of one wife who has led his family well, and it is crucial that the wife of the elder be able to teach and shepherd the sisters.

There is no such requirement to be an evangelist, or prophet, or apostle, or any other gifted member.

But the church is a family of God and as such God wants certain ones to be set forth as a good example to help the rest of the saints.

Instead of viewing elders as "leaders" which is insulting to Jesus, why not just view them as examples to the flock who are able to teach others. There is no "theological discourse" requirement to be an elder, but there is the requirement to be the husband of one wife, to lead your family well, to be of good reputation in the community.
If there are no leaders then the discussion of female leadership is moot.
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Old 08-12-2017, 03:24 PM   #106
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I understand that how we define "church" matters here. To me, if a church is a gathering of believers, then the 12 disciples were a church. Judas would be a tare sowed by Satan.
I was planning to address all or most of Evangelical’s comments, but then my eyes fell on this by him, which warrants special attention:
Judas would be a tare sowed by Satan.
Evangelical initially included Judas as a church leader. Now he has stated that Judas was sown by Satan into the group of twelve disciples (which he called the church). Here is what the Bible states:
Jesus answered them, "Did I Myself not choose you, the twelve, and yet one of you is a devil?" (John 6:70, NASB)
The Bible does not tell us that Jesus chose only eleven disciples and Satan picked the twelfth. It tells us that Jesus chose all twelve disciples—including Judas. His choosing was according to God’s plan. To state that Satan sowed Judas as a tare is to state a blatant falsehood.

Actually, what Evangelical has written is libel against God—or what’s known as blasphemy. He is basically calling God a liar by stating that Satan, not God, put Judas into the group of twelve disciples. For his own sake before God, he should retract this statement and repent for making it.
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Old 08-12-2017, 05:05 PM   #107
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If there are no leaders then the discussion of female leadership is moot.
Who were Watchman Nee's "Leaders" for the earliest part of his Christian life? Not a trick question, my friend. The answer is well documented.
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Old 08-13-2017, 04:43 AM   #108
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Who were Watchman Nee's "Leaders" for the earliest part of his Christian life? Not a trick question, my friend. The answer is well documented.
-
Were these women functioning as elders in the church, above, or equal to men? Not a trick question, either.

Their influence is well acknowledged by LSM and by Lee as well. I wonder where that leaves this false idea floating around that the Recovery is somehow against women.

The Recovery to my knowledge is not against women in ministry like those who helped Nee. This is about women being appointed elders in a local church, and to my knowledge none of the women influencing Nee's life were in such a position.
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Old 08-13-2017, 05:07 AM   #109
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I was planning to address all or most of Evangelical’s comments, but then my eyes fell on this by him, which warrants special attention:
Judas would be a tare sowed by Satan.
Evangelical initially included Judas as a church leader. Now he has stated that Judas was sown by Satan into the group of twelve disciples (which he called the church). Here is what the Bible states:
Jesus answered them, "Did I Myself not choose you, the twelve, and yet one of you is a devil?" (John 6:70, NASB)
The Bible does not tell us that Jesus chose only eleven disciples and Satan picked the twelfth. It tells us that Jesus chose all twelve disciples—including Judas. His choosing was according to God’s plan. To state that Satan sowed Judas as a tare is to state a blatant falsehood.
Jesus knew that Judas was a tare, and chose him knowing that Judas was betray him. The meaning of John 6:70 is that Jesus chose a devil as one of his disciples. He did not tell the others, however. He was like a tare growing among the wheat.

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Actually, what Evangelical has written is libel against God—or what’s known as blasphemy. He is basically calling God a liar by stating that Satan, not God, put Judas into the group of twelve disciples. For his own sake before God, he should retract this statement and repent for making it.
God allowed Satan to use Judas.
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Old 08-13-2017, 07:00 AM   #110
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"Actually, what Evangelical has written is libel against God—or what’s known as blasphemy. He is basically calling God a liar by stating that Satan, not God, put Judas into the group of twelve disciples. For his own sake before God, he should retract this statement and repent for making it."

We could test it by seeing if he sinks or floats..... but probably a little water boarding is all that is needed.
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Old 08-13-2017, 07:52 AM   #111
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Jesus knew that Judas was a tare, and chose him knowing that Judas was betray him. The meaning of John 6:70 is that Jesus chose a devil as one of his disciples. He did not tell the others, however. He was like a tare growing among the wheat.
God allowed Satan to use Judas.
If you wish to gather all data on Judas you should read The Gospel of Judas :
http://www.nationalgeographic.com/lo...pelofJudas.pdf
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Old 08-13-2017, 10:41 AM   #112
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The "gospel of Judas" is not a Gospel at all, but a fictional fantasy dreamed up by some heretical Gnostics, which is why it was never seriously considered as being worthy to be in the canon of the New Testament. Maybe interesting reading for some, but not worth the time of day for the serious student of the Scriptures or church history.
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Old 08-13-2017, 11:22 AM   #113
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Were these women functioning as elders in the church, above, or equal to men? Not a trick question, either.
They were functioning in a capacity far exceeding that of an elder in many respects. They were functioning as shepherds of Nee's soul. It's impossible to be someone's shepherd unless you are, in a very real sense, their leader. The founder of your sect/movement was lead by women. Sorry if this hurts your male ego or antiquated sensibilities.

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Their influence is well acknowledged by LSM and by Lee as well. I wonder where that leaves this false idea floating around that the Recovery is somehow against women.
Witness Lee hardly mentioned these women for the last 20-25 years of his so-called ministry. I heard Lee speak for hundreds of messages in person and can't actually recall him mentioning these sisters more than a couple of times..and that only in passing. I know that he mentioned them in his biography of Nee. The treatment of sisters/women in the Local Church is well-documented in this forum, and much of the mistreatment has been perpetrated by leaders who picked up their despicable attitude directly from the words and actions of their dear Brother Lee.
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The Recovery to my knowledge is not against women in ministry like those who helped Nee.
Dude, what planet do you live on? Seriously, I wonder sometimes if you live in some Local Church parallel universe in which everything is opposite of what is taught and practiced in the actual Local Church of Witness Lee.
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Old 08-13-2017, 05:05 PM   #114
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The "gospel of Judas" is not a Gospel at all, but a fictional fantasy dreamed up by some heretical Gnostics, which is why it was never seriously considered as being worthy to be in the canon of the New Testament. Maybe interesting reading for some, but not worth the time of day for the serious student of the Scriptures or church history.
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I agree. But it does represent stories of Judas in the 2nd c. And didn't Judas, more than all the other disciples, bring about the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross. Isn't that important to us today?

But it's off topic. So enough of Judas already. Thanks for your comment Untohim.

Now back to the LC denigrating women leadership.
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Old 08-13-2017, 05:28 PM   #115
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They were functioning in a capacity far exceeding that of an elder in many respects. They were functioning as shepherds of Nee's soul. It's impossible to be someone's shepherd unless you are, in a very real sense, their leader. The founder of your sect/movement was lead by women. Sorry if this hurts your male ego or antiquated sensibilities.
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Well, we could say that his mother was even more important than those women, and was in a "very real sense" his "leader".

Does this mean his mother is qualified to lead a church? No.

The answer to my simple question was "no, they were not functioning as elders in a corporate gathering, or the local assembly".

And why did Nee not appoint female elders, if he thought those women were qualified?

The fact that Nee himself did not appoint female elders in "his church" proves that he would not agree with your position. I wonder if he passed on those instructions to Lee.

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Witness Lee hardly mentioned these women for the last 20-25 years of his so-called ministry. I heard Lee speak for hundreds of messages in person and can't actually recall him mentioning these sisters more than a couple of times..and that only in passing. I know that he mentioned them in his biography of Nee. The treatment of sisters/women in the Local Church is well-documented in this forum, and much of the mistreatment has been perpetrated by leaders who picked up their despicable attitude directly from the words and actions of their dear Brother Lee.
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Just like the bible then, which mentions sisters only a couple of times, and that only in passing.

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Dude, what planet do you live on? Seriously, I wonder sometimes if you live in some Local Church parallel universe in which everything is opposite of what is taught and practiced in the actual Local Church of Witness Lee.
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There are no female elders but women can fulfill their ministry in the local churches, no one is stopping them.
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Old 08-13-2017, 06:03 PM   #116
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"Actually, what Evangelical has written is libel against God—or what’s known as blasphemy. He is basically calling God a liar by stating that Satan, not God, put Judas into the group of twelve disciples. For his own sake before God, he should retract this statement and repent for making it."

We could test it by seeing if he sinks or floats..... but probably a little water boarding is all that is needed.
I would get hearty amen's all around in my local church for saying Judas was a tare hehehe. But I don't know about yours....
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Old 08-14-2017, 03:23 AM   #117
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women can fulfill their ministry in the local churches, no one is stopping them.
Do you really believe that Ruth Lee or Peace Wang could fulfill their ministry in the LSM-affiliated local churches today? Or that "famous spiritual author" Mary McDonough could write the book God's Plan of Redemption, cited by Lee? (see e.g., Four great pillars in the Lord's Recovery [2002], p.73)?

None of them would last a fortnight if they tried to fulfill their ministries today.
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Old 08-14-2017, 05:57 AM   #118
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The religious traditions in Christianity stemmed from the fellowship of the apostles.

Then it is most likely that the absence of female leadership in those traditions also came from the fellowship of the apostles.
Oh, great! Then why not point us to the verses concerning the Apostle's fellowship on this point and lets just cut out the "middle man" of Christian tradition. I think it is well documented that Witness Lee did not respect Christian tradition, and I think it is also well documented that those on this forum do respect the fellowship of the Apostles written down for us in the NT.
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Old 08-14-2017, 06:04 AM   #119
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If there are no leaders then the discussion of female leadership is moot.
Oh, guess you missed my point.

If a key mission of the church is a "hospital" where damaged sinners can recuperate (based on the parable of the Good Samaritan) and if one of the key ways in which people in the world are damaged are the various sins that kill families (fornication, addictions -- alcohol, gambling, drugs, pursuit of getting rich, etc.) then it stands to reason that part of the "treatment" to restore saints would be to help them have a healthy marriage life.

This hypothesis, that the church is concerned with healthy marriages, is supported by the fact that elders must exemplify a healthy marriage (husband of one wife, not a drunkard, good reputation, raise family well).

If the selection of elders with this goal in mind (setting up a healthy example of marriage to the flock as well as providing people who can counsel others) then it becomes obvious that the selection of an elder includes the selection of the elder's wife who must be able to teach the younger women.

My point is not that there is no leadership, but rather those chosen as examples to the flock are chosen as an example of a healthy marriage, hence male and female.

Since Paul requires these elder women to teach the younger it is perfectly reasonable to say that this includes the use of books, videos, TV, radio, blogs, etc. Hence there is no reason a sister could not have a prevailing ministry while having her head fully covered by the fellowship of the apostles.

Also, since women outnumber men in the church (2:1 or more) then it stands to reason that a ministry that ministers to sisters could be twice as impactful as that to men. Perhaps the reason that the NT requires men to fill certain roles is that if we didn't we might become completely insignificant in the church. Or as Paul said "23 And those members of the body, which we think to be less honourable, upon these we bestow more abundant honour; and our uncomely parts have more abundant comeliness."
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Old 08-14-2017, 06:29 AM   #120
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Oh, great! Then why not point us to the verses concerning the Apostle's fellowship on this point and lets just cut out the "middle man" of Christian tradition. I think it is well documented that Witness Lee did not respect Christian tradition, and I think it is also well documented that those on this forum do respect the fellowship of the Apostles written down for us in the NT.
Everyone has the "fellowship of the Apostles" if they read the bible don't they?

This tradition of forbidding female leadership was not reversed by Luther or Calvin. Did they not have the fellowship of the Apostles also?

John Calvin's commentary on 1 Tim 2:12

If any one bring forward, by way of objection, Deborah and others of the same class, of whom we read that they were at one time appointed by the command of God to govern the people, the answer is easy. Extraordinary acts done by God do not overturn the ordinary rules of government, by which he intended that we should be bound. Accordingly, if women at one time held the office of prophets and teachers, and that too when they were supernaturally called to it by the Spirit of God, He who is above all law might do this; but, being a peculiar case, “Because it is a peculiar and extraordinary case.” this is not opposed to the constant and ordinary system of government.

If we truly care about the fellowship of the Apostles, we would seek out the original Greek meaning of what the Apostles wrote, as I have, by consulting experts such as Wallace.

In addition, we have the serious scholars as I think you called them once before, such as Matthew Henry:


According to St. Paul, women are not allowed to be public teachers in the church; for teaching is an office of authority. But good women may and ought to teach their children at home the principles of true religion.


What makes you think that only you have the "fellowship of the Apostles" and Wallace, Henry, Calvin etc and others do not?

Lee did reference the early church fathers at times, appealing to the early church views and traditions.

I could also quote early church fathers, forbidding female leadership if you like - people who lived closer to the time of the apostles. Or a few good books on Christian history.

During the apostles time, there were no female church leaders. The early church carried on these traditions and still carried on today by Catholic and Orthodox denominations.
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Old 08-14-2017, 06:56 AM   #121
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I could also quote early church fathers, forbidding female leadership if you like - people who lived closer to the time of the apostles. Or a few good books on Christian history.

During the apostles time, there were no female church leaders. The early church carried on these traditions and still carried on today by Catholic and Orthodox denominations.
The "Lord's Recovery" is the only Christian group I know of that is adamant about no female leadership, yet simultaneously extols females as early church leaders in its own history. Yet none of them could function as they once did, in the current leadership/organizational structure.

Evidently the "dispensation" of female function passed. They were useful for the accretion of temporal, earthly power, then they were cast aside. Now they can be conveniently waved as props, and the next moment put in the drawer. Mesmerised, anyone? (Gal 3:1) How can the flock so passively & uncritically accept such blatant hypocrisy?
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Old 08-14-2017, 08:18 AM   #122
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The "Lord's Recovery" is the only Christian group I know of that is adamant about no female leadership, yet simultaneously extols females as early church leaders in its own history. Yet none of them could function as they once did, in the current leadership/organizational structure.

Evidently the "dispensation" of female function passed. They were useful for the accretion of temporal, earthly power, then they were cast aside. Now they can be conveniently waved as props, and the next moment put in the drawer. Mesmerised, anyone? (Gal 3:1) How can the flock so passively & uncritically accept such blatant hypocrisy?
Most non-Catholics and denominations extol Luther as a leader in the history of the church but do not promote or recognize the institution of the monastery, its monks, or their way of life. Luther could not function as he once did in most of the current denominations and it is doubtful he would make it past the front doors for Sunday services even in those places named after him.

How can the flock so passively and uncritically accept such blatant hypocrisy?

The local churches, in the Lords Recovery, are some of the few places that Luther could walk into, sit on the front row, robes and all, and stand up to speak and function. (Admittedly, nailing stuff to the front door of the meeting hall would be frowned upon.)

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Old 08-14-2017, 08:21 AM   #123
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The "Lord's Recovery" is the only Christian group I know of that is adamant about no female leadership, yet simultaneously extols females as early church leaders in its own history.
But weren't those founding women of Nee's movement rebels?
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Old 08-14-2017, 09:05 AM   #124
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In addition, we have the serious scholars as I think you called them once before, such as Matthew Henry:


According to St. Paul, women are not allowed to be public teachers in the church; for teaching is an office of authority. But good women may and ought to teach their children at home the principles of true religion.
How do you reconcile this with Paul's word in Titus?

3 The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things;

4 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,

5 To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.


Once again, I don't dispute Paul's word that elders need to be "husbands of one wife" not Male, or Men. A single man is not eligible to be an elder, nor is a divorced man, a remarried man, etc. If we are going to be "absolute" for the word, and get rid of the hypocrisy, then do it. Stop making excuses for your own practice while condemning everyone else. This rule by Paul was not about condemning others (including himself) but rather about setting forth a good example to the flock, even as the Apostles state clearly and plainly.

The reality is you can have a ministry even if you are divorced, remarried, single, or (God forbid) a sister. What you can't be if you are any of those is "the husband of one wife". Elders were set forth as an example of the flock. You don't have to be an elder to teach or have a ministry. However, the elders that were able to teach as well were "worthy of double honor".

2nd, if you are the "husband of one wife" when you are selected to be an elder then they are obviously selecting you and your wife. Based on Titus the wife needs to teach the sisters.

Why is this so hard for you to understand and acknowledge?
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Old 08-14-2017, 09:25 AM   #125
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Most non-Catholics and denominations extol Luther as a leader in the history of the church but do not promote or recognize the institution of the monastery, its monks, or their way of life. Luther could not function as he once did in most of the current denominations and it is doubtful he would make it past the front doors for Sunday services even in those places named after him.

How can the flock so passively and uncritically accept such blatant hypocrisy?

The local churches, in the Lords Recovery, are some of the few places that Luther could walk into, sit on the front row, robes and all, and stand up to speak and function. (Admittedly, nailing stuff to the front door of the meeting hall would be frowned upon.)

Drake
Interesting. You create a contrived scenario (monasteries and monks) and say Luther of 1523 wouldn't fit into the Lutheran church today. This hypocrisy, so-called, justifies the hypocrisy of "Local Churches" basing their teachings on women's ministries while no longer allowing them the same? Does this make the church pure and spotless in your eyes? And how much do you think God thinks like this? Really?

Look at the website of a pro- "Lord's Recovery" apologetic. Trying to justify the "recovery" of the "three parts of man" idea.

http://www.tripartiteman.org/historical/mcdonough.html

The Website bar reads: "Murray/Pember/Fausset/Larkin/Penn-Lewis/McDonough/Paxson/Nee/Lee"

Believe me, I heard this kind of stuff all the time. Women were put right in with the men if they could justify the ideas of Nee & Lee. Suddenly they were spiritual giants, visionaries, able to recover centuries-hidden 'truths'. But they'd better not try to give a message today! No, their time had passed. The truths were all opened, so we were told, and now only men could guide the ship of state.

They were expendable. They were used and discarded. Luther could walk in today and teach, so you say, but no woman could. Even though once they did, crucially even. The dispensation of the functioning woman has passed. It came, it was useful, now it is over. It is now the age of small potatoes, genuflecting upon the Great Man's words.

Well in that case I guess there is no hypocrisy. Nobody can function in the "Lord's Recovery". Equal-opportunity oppression. Everyone is "restricted". Well, thank God for Nee and Lee, otherwise we'd all just sit around all day, wondering what to do.
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Old 08-14-2017, 09:31 AM   #126
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Based on Titus the wife needs to teach the sisters.
From my memory "teach" meant "to define doctrine" or define what constituted "truth" in the church. So elder women teaching younger or inexperienced sisters in Titus (for example) would probably be understood in the "Lord's Recovery" as the same as teaching nursery school. Useful but auxiliary.

Yet their apologetics base the revelations of Nee on the teachings of various women. They were even widely regarded as his closest confidants ("co-workers"). Until he no longer needed them. Then they were tossed (Ruth Lee et al).

But their tombs remain, and the "Lord's Recovery" faithfully maintain them. Because at present they give a patina of legitimacy to the ideas of Nee. Yet how can women (who can't teach) be used to give the veneer of legitimacy to Nee's ministry? Why the gross dis-connect?
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Old 08-14-2017, 10:08 AM   #127
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John Calvin's commentary on 1 Tim 2:12

If any one bring forward, by way of objection, Deborah and others of the same class, of whom we read that they were at one time appointed by the command of God to govern the people, the answer is easy. Extraordinary acts done by God do not overturn the ordinary rules of government, by which he intended that we should be bound. Accordingly, if women at one time held the office of prophets and teachers, and that too when they were supernaturally called to it by the Spirit of God, He who is above all law might do this; but, being a peculiar case, “Because it is a peculiar and extraordinary case.” this is not opposed to the constant and ordinary system of government.
So, according to John Calvin, who determines when supernatural, peculiar, and extraordinary acts of God are deemed necessary?

Is this something determined by the all-male board of Blendeds?

When men of God from around the world spoke up as prophets for God during every so-called "storm" in TLR, none of its leaders recognized this as a supernatural, peculiar, and extraordinary act of God.

I doubt if the current Blendeds could recognize a supernatural act of God if it hit them between the eyes.
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Old 08-14-2017, 10:10 AM   #128
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The "Lord's Recovery" is the only Christian group I know of that is adamant about no female leadership, yet simultaneously extols females as early church leaders in its own history. Yet none of them could function as they once did, in the current leadership/organizational structure.

Evidently the "dispensation" of female function passed.
They were useful for the accretion of temporal, earthly power, then they were cast aside. Now they can be conveniently waved as props, and the next moment put in the drawer. Mesmerised, anyone? (Gal 3:1) How can the flock so passively & uncritically accept such blatant hypocrisy?
The age of female function has passed with the age of spiritual giants.
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Old 08-14-2017, 10:13 AM   #129
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Most non-Catholics and denominations extol Luther as a leader in the history of the church but do not promote or recognize the institution of the monastery, its monks, or their way of life. Luther could not function as he once did in most of the current denominations and it is doubtful he would make it past the front doors for Sunday services even in those places named after him.

How can the flock so passively and uncritically accept such blatant hypocrisy?

The local churches, in the Lords Recovery, are some of the few places that Luther could walk into, sit on the front row, robes and all, and stand up to speak and function. (Admittedly, nailing stuff to the front door of the meeting hall would be frowned upon.)

Drake
Are you serious?

He would set afire every one of those HWFMR's.
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Old 08-14-2017, 10:19 AM   #130
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How do you reconcile this with Paul's word in Titus?

3 The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things;

4 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,

5 To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.
Sounds to me like Joyce Meyer.
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Old 08-14-2017, 11:27 AM   #131
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Aron "Interesting. You create a contrived scenario (monasteries and monks) and say Luther of 1523 wouldn't fit into the Lutheran church today. This hypocrisy, so-called, justifies the hypocrisy of "Local Churches" basing their teachings on women's ministries while no longer allowing them the same? Does this make the church pure and spotless in your eyes? And how much do you think God thinks like this? Really?"

If the Luther example is contrived so is your women's argument. That is the point.

First, you cannot possibly know if the function of Ruth Lee, Peace Wang, Dora Yu, ME Barber, etc. would be accepted today.They were then and they could now. It is God who selects the gifts, gives them to men according to his place and time. What is contrived is your crafting a static model as if what worked once should work anytime and any place as if God follows your schedule and rules. He doesn't. Luther had his moment, those sisters had theirs, and made a big contribution. Give God the glory. It's history.

Second, you are conflating Gods government and universal order with functioning of gifts. Sisters who submit to Gods governmental order bring strength to the churches and to the functioning of the Body. I have witnessed very talented sisters who functioned in the fellowship of the Body, including from the podium, who brought refreshing and insight to the churches. I have also witnessed equally talented sisters, thankfully only a few, who functioned independently and not in submission to Gods governmental arrangement and brought chaos and disruption to the churches. Equally talented and gifted, but two very different results.

You cannot convince me that your theories would have made a difference in practice because your theories are in a completely different realm from the divine revelation. But don't misunderstand, I am not suggesting that this is relevant everywhere in the world but I am saying that in the administration of God government it is crucial. For any properly functioning body its members know their function and operate within the limits of their God endowed capacity.

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Old 08-14-2017, 01:05 PM   #132
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you cannot possibly know if the function of Ruth Lee, Peace Wang, Dora Yu, ME Barber, etc. would be accepted today.They were then and they could now.
I "know" if I can possibly know anything; if I know water is wet, or corn is (usually) yellow. These women couldn't function today. Because no women can function today. So how could they function? By repeating the message of the Oracle? Is that what they did?

By pray-reading bullet points? Because that is what they did? By speaking 2 minutes on Sunday morning of what they 'enjoyed' from HWFMR?

How could they function today? How could they do anything like what they did?

Now, suppose by way of comparison, any other functional saint of yore would fall into the same issue. Wesley couldn't function today in the Methodist Church, or Luther in the Lutheran Church, or Edwards in the Congregational Church (the last one I do believe!). Does that make the "Lord's Recovery" hypocrisy any less glaring? Even if it were so? Where's the pure and spotless bride? Claiming everyone else is as sullied as she? Ignoring and hoping you not think about how she's built, at least in part, on the revelations and teachings and spiritual visions of those who today couldn't even share 5 minutes from the lectern?

And remember, it's not like the "Lord's Recovery" used these women and then pretended they didn't exist. No, they're loudly and repeatedly trumpeted as lionesses, pillars of the early "Recovery" church's vision. And not one could even give a Sunday message in a "Lord's Recovery" local church. Simply because they're women. Not one pamphlet from any of them. Not a page. Not a word.

I'm trying to think of a hypocrisy that could possibly be more glaring, either real or hypothetical. No dice - this one is the high peak, the consummation, the crystallisation. (of course I'm subjectively biased, I admit; emotionally invested in my argument. But still it's got to be somewhere near the top).
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Old 08-14-2017, 01:16 PM   #133
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And remember, it's not like the "Lord's Recovery" used these women and then pretended they didn't exist. No, they're loudly and repeatedly trumpeted as lionesses, pillars of the early "Recovery" vision. And not one could even give a Lord's Day morning message in a "Lord's Recovery" local church. Simply because they are women. Not one pamphlet from any of them. Not a page.

I'm trying to think of a hypocrisy that could possibly be more glaring, either real or hypothetical. No dice - this one is at the high peak, the consummation, the crystallisation. (of course I'm subjectively biased, I admit; emotionally invested in my argument. But still it's got to be somewhere near the top).
At least these dear sisters have not had their names expunged from Lee's Book of Life-studies, as did John Ingalls and others who were also recovery pioneers.
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Old 08-14-2017, 02:34 PM   #134
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I have never heard , on this forum or elsewhere, how Lee could cite McDonough as an authoritative source, if women can't teach in the church.
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Old 08-14-2017, 02:36 PM   #135
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The age of female function has passed with the age of spiritual giants.
Right. Women could be spiritual giants but they can't teach in the church: dispensationism at its finest. When we do it, it's valid, but then the age passes and then no one can. Because remember, Paul said so; it's in the Bible. God's immutable word. Women can't teach.

But fortunately, because of the pressing need, women could teach between 1830 and 1940. It was a supernatural thing.
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Old 08-14-2017, 03:14 PM   #136
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Right. Women could be spiritual giants but they can't teach in the church: dispensationism at its finest. When we do it, it's valid, but then the age passes and then no one can. Because remember, Paul said so; it's in the Bible. God's immutable word. Women can't teach.

But fortunately, because of the pressing need, women could teach between 1830 and 1940. It was a supernatural thing.
Did Paul intend his statement in I Tim 2 to be added to the 613 laws in the Old Testament? Do we live under the law of Paul?
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Old 08-14-2017, 03:28 PM   #137
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Did Paul intend his statement in I Tim 2 to be added to the 613 laws in the Old Testament? Do we live under the law of Paul?
I've seen that agued both sides, yea and nay. And I've weighed in, myself. But the answers are irrelevant to the fact that Nee & Lee freely used women's techings if it gave their ideas a patina of legitimacy. And once legitimacy was apparently established - "pouf" - women can't teach in the church. Because the Bible says so.

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Old 08-14-2017, 03:41 PM   #138
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I've seen that agued both sides, yea and nay. And I've weighed in, myself. But the answers are irrelevant to the fact that Nee & Lee freely used women's techings if it gave their ideas a patina of legitimacy. And once legitimacy was apparently established - "pouf" - women can't teach in the church. Because the Bible says so.

Crass.
aron, In your zeal to condemn others you zoom past a potentially valuable point that awareness poses.

the answers are irrelevant? I don't think so. What does the Bible teach about this according to the verses awareness cites?

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Old 08-14-2017, 03:54 PM   #139
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From my memory "teach" meant "to define doctrine" or define what constituted "truth" in the church. So elder women teaching younger or inexperienced sisters in Titus (for example) would probably be understood in the "Lord's Recovery" as the same as teaching nursery school. Useful but auxiliary.
This was Witness Lee's explanation for why one verse by Paul charges sister's to teach and another prohibits them from teaching. He inferred that one portion was defining doctrine. But I cannot find any way to discern that distinction from the Greek or from the many different translations.

Instead I would argue that the apostles defined doctrine. No elder has the authority to override the Apostle's fellowship, nor do they have any authority to add or take away from the Apostle's fellowship. So I consider Witness Lee's explanation to be lacking and unsatisfactory.

Instead I would return to my understanding that the elders were chosen to "be an example to the flock". An example of what? Of those who are a husband of one wife, who have led a life of good repute, who have raised a family well. Teaching is not a requirement, those who teach well are worthy of double honor, it is a bonus if the elder can teach, not a requirement.

So then, following the idea that the church is set up as God's family and a healthy example for recovering sinners, then in this family the sister's don't have authority over the men. In a family, and in the church, based on my experience the sisters / wives make 90% of the decisions. Most of these decisions are of little concern to the husband / elders. However, there are times when the husband / elder will be concerned and step in, and in those cases the husband / elder has the veto power.

I was stunned by your considering the verse in Titus as being roughly equivalent to teaching nursery school. Pretty insulting to the "young wives" to be likened to nursery school kids. It seems very arrogant to think that what the brothers are teaching is so critical and what the sister's are teaching is for nursery school. Since 2/3 of the saints are sisters and the sister's have been given the clear authority to teach the sisters I see no reason why this wouldn't potentially be the more impactful ministry.

Successful marriage that results in raising a family well is the key factor in the church growing and multiplying over the last 2,000 years. It is the key factor in the gospel -- a living testimony to those living in an evil and adulterous age. This is how you remove the generational curse.

I have been stunned at how overrated "teaching" is. People are chosen to lead a church based on their ability to teach even though that is not a requirement for elders, (a willingness to teach is a requirement, not the same). However, the very clear requirements are explained away, ignored, and overlooked.

The issue in the NT is not to be a hearer of the word only, but rather a doer of the word. Nothing will prove this more than being the husband of one wife, being of good repute, not being given to drink and raising a family well.

We have often been deceived by "teachers" of the word, like Witness Lee. But had we looked at these requirements for both WL and WN we wouldn't have been deceived. We would have given the proper weight to TL and PL (WL's sons) and to WN's mistress. There have been many other charlatans that were stumbled by one of these four criteria. Why is it that very few give the weight to these matters that Paul gave?
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Old 08-14-2017, 04:06 PM   #140
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aron> "Where's the pure and spotless bride? Claiming everyone else is as sullied as she?"

Brother, it is the Lord who is building His church, His bride. It is He who is cleansing her, perfecting her and will present her to Himself spotless and without wrinkle. She is not sullied. Don't even imply it.

He made all the arrangements in the past, present, and future. He will complete His work. Don't go too far in your criticisms less a loose word become a stumbling to you or someone else.

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Old 08-14-2017, 04:18 PM   #141
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aron, In your zeal to condemn others you zoom past a potentially valuable point that awareness poses.

the answers are irrelevant? I don't think so. What does the Bible teach about this according to the verses awareness cites?

Drake
LSM says, Women can't teach. Right? So why then did Lee cite womens' teachings? Either they can teach or they can't.

On the other hand, if one argues against literal application of Paul here in the present age, then we can accept Penn-Lewis and Mcdonough as legitimate and independent sources of doctrinal light. But how can one simultaneously argue for the letter of Paul, and in practice ignore its counsel?
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Old 08-14-2017, 04:23 PM   #142
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aron> "Where's the pure and spotless bride? Claiming everyone else is as sullied as she?"

Brother, it is the Lord who is building His church, His bride. It is He who is cleansing her, perfecting her and will present her to Himself spotless and without wrinkle. She is not sullied. Don't even imply it.

He made all the arrangements in the past, present, and future. He will complete His work. Don't go too far in your criticisms less a loose word become a stumbling to you or someone else.

Drake
So why continually sully "Christianity" if you are in the same exact state? When i point out the hypocrisy of LSM's position, you scramble to find hypocrisy elsewhere, as if that will cause God to overlook yours. Don't go too far in your criticisms of the body of Christ (ready, now? "... fallen, degraded, deformed, darkened, satanic &c") lest you find that you're weighed in the same balance.
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Old 08-14-2017, 04:24 PM   #143
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I've seen that agued both sides, yea and nay. And I've weighed in, myself. But the answers are irrelevant to the fact that Nee & Lee freely used women's techings if it gave their ideas a patina of legitimacy. And once legitimacy was apparently established - "pouf" - women can't teach in the church. Because the Bible says so.

Crass.
You can't simply take these verses at face value because in other places Paul charges women to teach, or says that they shouldn't speak unless their head is covered. Therefore it is very obvious that Paul is giving a nuanced teaching.

Look at the context of 1tim 2 -- it is about being submissive to the King and the authority that we can live a peaceful life. I liken this chapter to "speaking to the press". I work for the city and we are told very clearly we are not to speak to the press, if the press tries to talk to us we are told who to direct them to. I see this charge about the sister's not usurping authority over a man to be equivalent to being told not to talk to the press.

But regardless of whether you have considered this carefully or not, at the very least you need to realize that this cannot be viewed as a blanket prohibition to speak when there are other places when Paul tells sister's that when they speak they need to do it in a certain way, and then still other places they are charged to teach.
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Old 08-14-2017, 04:38 PM   #144
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How do you reconcile this with Paul's word in Titus?

3 The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things;

4 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,

5 To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.


Once again, I don't dispute Paul's word that elders need to be "husbands of one wife" not Male, or Men. A single man is not eligible to be an elder, nor is a divorced man, a remarried man, etc. If we are going to be "absolute" for the word, and get rid of the hypocrisy, then do it. Stop making excuses for your own practice while condemning everyone else. This rule by Paul was not about condemning others (including himself) but rather about setting forth a good example to the flock, even as the Apostles state clearly and plainly.

The reality is you can have a ministry even if you are divorced, remarried, single, or (God forbid) a sister. What you can't be if you are any of those is "the husband of one wife". Elders were set forth as an example of the flock. You don't have to be an elder to teach or have a ministry. However, the elders that were able to teach as well were "worthy of double honor".

2nd, if you are the "husband of one wife" when you are selected to be an elder then they are obviously selecting you and your wife. Based on Titus the wife needs to teach the sisters.

Why is this so hard for you to understand and acknowledge?
I think Calvin is not restricting women teaching women or children.

The topic of the matter is women teaching men in the public assembly.

The big issue I see for you and others is that you fail to admit any restrictions on women whatsoever, despite these restrictions being believed in Christianity for hundreds of years and also followed by the reformers.

So why don't I turn this around and ask, what do you think women can women do and what can't they do?
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Old 08-14-2017, 04:40 PM   #145
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So why continually sully "Christianity" if you are in the same exact state? When i point out the hypocrisy of LSM's position, you scramble to find hypocrisy elsewhere, as if that will cause God to overlook yours. Don't go too far in your criticisms of the body of Christ (ready, now? "... fallen, degraded, deformed, darkened, satanic &c") lest you find that you're weighed in the same balance.
Brother, I was very specific in my exhortation... I felt you were flirting with crossing a line about something He is doing..... I was concerned.... just consider it.
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Old 08-14-2017, 04:44 PM   #146
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Aron "Interesting. You create a contrived scenario (monasteries and monks) and say Luther of 1523 wouldn't fit into the Lutheran church today. This hypocrisy, so-called, justifies the hypocrisy of "Local Churches" basing their teachings on women's ministries while no longer allowing them the same? Does this make the church pure and spotless in your eyes? And how much do you think God thinks like this? Really?"

If the Luther example is contrived so is your women's argument. That is the point.

First, you cannot possibly know if the function of Ruth Lee, Peace Wang, Dora Yu, ME Barber, etc. would be accepted today.They were then and they could now. It is God who selects the gifts, gives them to men according to his place and time. What is contrived is your crafting a static model as if what worked once should work anytime and any place as if God follows your schedule and rules. He doesn't. Luther had his moment, those sisters had theirs, and made a big contribution. Give God the glory. It's history.

Second, you are conflating Gods government and universal order with functioning of gifts. Sisters who submit to Gods governmental order bring strength to the churches and to the functioning of the Body. I have witnessed very talented sisters who functioned in the fellowship of the Body, including from the podium, who brought refreshing and insight to the churches. I have also witnessed equally talented sisters, thankfully only a few, who functioned independently and not in submission to Gods governmental arrangement and brought chaos and disruption to the churches. Equally talented and gifted, but two very different results.

You cannot convince me that your theories would have made a difference in practice because your theories are in a completely different realm from the divine revelation. But don't misunderstand, I am not suggesting that this is relevant everywhere in the world but I am saying that in the administration of God government it is crucial. For any properly functioning body its members know their function and operate within the limits of their God endowed capacity.

Drake

If Luther or Calvin joined the forum today UntoHim would call them antiquitated and misogynist.
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Old 08-14-2017, 04:45 PM   #147
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I think Calvin is not restricting women teaching women or children.

The topic of the matter is women teaching men in the public assembly.

The big issue I see for you and others is that you fail to admit any restrictions on women whatsoever, despite these restrictions being believed in Christianity for hundreds of years and also followed by the reformers.

So why don't I turn this around and ask, what do you think women can women do and what can't they do?
Really, how do I fail to admit any restrictions? I admit every single restriction that Paul has given.

If you are referring to 1Tim 2, then you can't ignore the other verses of Paul in the books to Timothy and Titus. Nor should you ignore Paul's word in 1Corinthians.

In Post # 143 I explain 1Tim 2 in a way that does not contradict everything else Paul taught. However, if you read it as a blanket prohibition on women teaching then you are contradicting many other verses by Paul and others. That is a fatally flawed approach.
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Old 08-14-2017, 04:57 PM   #148
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So why don't I turn this around and ask, what do you think women can women do and what can't they do?
That is a great question, worthy of its own thread, and perhaps not suitable for this forum (alt views perhaps) since we will be leaving Witness Lee's little frog pond.

What do I think Women can do?

Let me change this question to "What do you think the New Testament says Women can do?"

I think Jesus word about moving mountains by faith applies equally to women and men.

I think Paul's word charging the aged women to teach the younger women how to have a good marriage is not some superficial nursery school teaching but a critical and essential ministry for the church.

I think that women have very clearly been given the authority to teach the women, who represent 2/3 of the church and are therefore a very, very significant group in the church.

I think that women (and men) need to have their head covered when they teach. A woman should wear a head covering as a good example to the other sister's, whereas a man shouldn't wear a head covering but all the same needs to practice having his head covered. For example, what I think is insignificant, what the Apostle's taught is significant. That is the reality of head covering.

I think Paul's word in 1Tim 2 is about dealing with the local authority, and talking about women "being in quietness" refers to not getting all agitated and provoking an outcry. In this context, when the church deals with the local government, the newspaper, the press or any other public discourse, in that situation only the elders should speak and everyone else does not have the right to say anything other than point to the elders to speak.

I think that Paul's word clearly states that when you choose "an elder" you are choosing a couple -- a man and a wife, and that has been ignored and overlooked by too many. I see this similar to Genesis 5 -- and He called their name Adam. Therefore it is either incredibly ignorant or else willfully blind to say that an elder is a brother. An elder is "the husband of one wife", hence the term elder includes two people, a husband and wife.

What does the NT teach that women can't do?

They can't do anything of themselves. Apart from Jesus they can do nothing.

If they want to move mountains and have a prevailing ministry they need to be joined to Jesus.

For example, Jesus gave an example of powerful, prevailing prayer -- and the person he used to illustrate this power was a widow. Her head was properly covered, she didn't step outside the lines, but even unrighteous judges had to bow before her prevailing prayer. In my experience just the threat of this is enough to cause fire to fall from the heavens.

Let me share a little experience I had. I worked with my church in a ministry for the persecuted Christians around the world. We chose those in Sudan, we had a picture of a child who was killed, we used a small child's coffin and we had a rally across the street from the UN when they opened their session in the beginning of September. We filled the park. One man that came was involved in a ministry in Sudan (they made a movie about him, you might have seen the movie). The rally made international news and a number of ambassadors said that this was when they first took the issue in Sudan seriously. Our message was if you don't care about your brother when you can do something, no one will care about you when it comes here.

The following year we planned to repeat this rally, only this time we were going to have the front row of our march to be aged women. Each woman would carry the picture of some atrocity taking place. If they couldn't walk that far all the better, we would put them in wheel chairs being pushed by young men. The rally was planned for September 13th, but it was cancelled after the attack on September 11th.

How about you, do you agree? Disagree? Please respond to each point specifically. Thanks.
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Old 08-14-2017, 05:02 PM   #149
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aron>"LSM says, Women can't teach. Right?"

With authority..... RCV on 1 Tim 2:12

But I do not permit a awoman to 1teach or to assert authority over a man, but to be in 2quietness.

121 To teach here means to teach with authority, to define and decide the meaning of doctrines concerning divine truth. For a woman to teach in this way or to exercise authority over a man is to leave her position. In God's creation man was ordained to be the head, and woman to be in subjection to man (1 Cor. 11:3). In the church this ordination should be kept.



aron, do you see the difference between a sister who teaches other sisters, or children, or ministers to others, or prophesying in the meetings.... all those vs the definition above? Is that distinction not clear whether you agree with it or not?

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Old 08-14-2017, 05:09 PM   #150
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aron>"LSM says, Women can't teach. Right?"

With authority..... RCV on 1 Tim 2:12

But I do not permit a awoman to 1teach or to assert authority over a man, but to be in 2quietness.

121 To teach here means to teach with authority, to define and decide the meaning of doctrines concerning divine truth. For a woman to teach in this way or to exercise authority over a man is to leave her position. In God's creation man was ordained to be the head, and woman to be in subjection to man (1 Cor. 11:3). In the church this ordination should be kept.



aron, do you see the difference between a sister who teaches other sisters, or children, or ministers to others, or prophesying in the meetings.... all those vs the definition above? Is that distinction not clear whether you agree with it or not?

Drake
Is there a basis in the Greek to say that the word teach in this chapter is somehow different from the other chapters?

Also, apart from the Apostles who gets to "define doctrine"? Wasn't the NT doctrine defined in the New Testament?

Also what does "to be in quietness" mean? How is it distinct from "following dumb idols"?
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Old 08-14-2017, 05:32 PM   #151
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ZNP"Is there a basis in the Greek to say that the word teach in this chapter is somehow different from the other chapters?"

I don't know about the Greek part... but in general it appears Paul's concern here and in 1 Cor 11, 14.. and the special case in Rev 2, is about authority in God's government.

ZNP" Also, apart from the Apostles who gets to "define doctrine"? Wasn't the NT doctrine defined in the New Testament?"

True. But when these letters were written the saints did not have the NT. And even though we have had the NT for sometime that did not prevent heresies from Mary Baker Eddy and Ellen White from cropping up and others.

ZNP "Also what does "to be in quietness" mean? How is it distinct from "following dumb idols"?"

Paul knew the difference and all may prophesy so in quietness must be related to his primary concern... in the first point above.

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Old 08-14-2017, 08:03 PM   #152
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Really, how do I fail to admit any restrictions? I admit every single restriction that Paul has given.

If you are referring to 1Tim 2, then you can't ignore the other verses of Paul in the books to Timothy and Titus. Nor should you ignore Paul's word in 1Corinthians.

In Post # 143 I explain 1Tim 2 in a way that does not contradict everything else Paul taught. However, if you read it as a blanket prohibition on women teaching then you are contradicting many other verses by Paul and others. That is a fatally flawed approach.
I have never put forward a blanket prohibition of women teaching.

My OP was in response to someone who had a question about women in leadership positions, i.e. in the "circle of elders":

They asked:

I'll just ask you one thing: Who do you see, in the leadership circle of LC, is a woman?


I'm genuinely curious if you know any sister that is in leadership position because of and only because of her spirituality.


It is about women teaching doctrine to men without the covering of the brothers in the assembly. I presumed that this was of her own accord and not by virtue of being the wife of an elder.

Women in leadership positions and particularly unmarried women without the covering of her husband, has been a universally accepted prohibition in Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant/Reform churches for centuries.
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Old 08-15-2017, 12:40 AM   #153
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aron, do you see the difference between a sister who teaches other sisters, or children, or ministers to others, or prophesying in the meetings.... all those vs the definition above? Is that distinction not clear whether you agree with it or not?
Yes, the distinction is clear. Then why does LSM cite womens' teachings as if they had authority?

See below:

“When I started working in the United States in 1961, I led the saints to exercise their spirit from the very beginning. During those years, traveling from coast to coast, I visited many places. After hearing my messages, many older Christians who were well-acquainted with the Bible and had even gone through theological training came to me and said that they hand never known that man had a spirit. Christians in general are very vague about this matter. The Chinese metaphysics were also quite ignorant of man’s spirit. They divided man into two parts, one part being invisible, which is man’s soul which they referred to as man’s higher form, and the other part being visible, which is man’s body which they referred to as man’s lower form. As last as the turn of this century, there was still a major turbulence aroused when Mrs. Penn-Lewis spoke on the tripartite man, especially in the distinction between the spirit and the soul.” Witness Lee, Messages in Preparation for the Spread of the Gospel p.30

“The fallen mind is corrupt and causes men to resist the truth (1 Tim 6:5; 2 Tim 3:8). According to Titus 1:15, the natural mind is also defiled. As Jessie Penn-Lewis says, “We therefore clearly see how, in the natural man, the mind is ‘darkened’, ‘puffed up’ by the flesh, empty and vain in its thoughts, carnal because governed by the flesh, and in all its activities – whether apparently ‘good’ or visibly ‘bad’ – at enmity with God” Ron Kangas, Mind bending or mind renewing? (a 1977 booklet in reply to Jack Sparks)

http://contendingforthefaith.org/en/...mind-renewing/

“Some people say that no one ever told the American Christians that man has a spirit. This saying is in fact not accurate because in the last one hundred years in America a few famous spiritual authors have mentioned the human spirit in their writings. For example, the diagram of the three circles is taken from the book God’s Pan of Redemption, written by an American sister, Mary E. McDonough. When you open this book, you will see the diagram of the three circles. . . “ Witness Lee, Truth, Life, the Church and the Gospel – The Four Great Pillars in the Lord’s Recovery p 73

I'm sure that we could find dozens of citations like these if we kept looking. My question is, Why does LSM cite women as though having authority, independently presenting "crucial matters" and "great pillars" of doctrinal truth? Do they think their readership is so dull, or insipid, as to miss the glaring discrepancy?

If you go to the LSM website, and look at online publications by title, under 'G', there are only three authors listed: Watchman Nee, Witness Lee, and Mary E. McDonough.
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Old 08-15-2017, 03:53 AM   #154
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Yes, the distinction is clear. Then why does LSM cite womens' teachings as if they had authority?

See below:

“When I started working in the United States in 1961, I led the saints to exercise their spirit from the very beginning. During those years, traveling from coast to coast, I visited many places. After hearing my messages, many older Christians who were well-acquainted with the Bible and had even gone through theological training came to me and said that they hand never known that man had a spirit. Christians in general are very vague about this matter. The Chinese metaphysics were also quite ignorant of man’s spirit. They divided man into two parts, one part being invisible, which is man’s soul which they referred to as man’s higher form, and the other part being visible, which is man’s body which they referred to as man’s lower form. As last as the turn of this century, there was still a major turbulence aroused when Mrs. Penn-Lewis spoke on the tripartite man, especially in the distinction between the spirit and the soul.” Witness Lee, Messages in Preparation for the Spread of the Gospel p.30

“The fallen mind is corrupt and causes men to resist the truth (1 Tim 6:5; 2 Tim 3:8). According to Titus 1:15, the natural mind is also defiled. As Jessie Penn-Lewis says, “We therefore clearly see how, in the natural man, the mind is ‘darkened’, ‘puffed up’ by the flesh, empty and vain in its thoughts, carnal because governed by the flesh, and in all its activities – whether apparently ‘good’ or visibly ‘bad’ – at enmity with God” Ron Kangas, Mind bending or mind renewing? (a 1977 booklet in reply to Jack Sparks)

http://contendingforthefaith.org/en/...mind-renewing/

“Some people say that no one ever told the American Christians that man has a spirit. This saying is in fact not accurate because in the last one hundred years in America a few famous spiritual authors have mentioned the human spirit in their writings. For example, the diagram of the three circles is taken from the book God’s Pan of Redemption, written by an American sister, Mary E. McDonough. When you open this book, you will see the diagram of the three circles. . . “ Witness Lee, Truth, Life, the Church and the Gospel – The Four Great Pillars in the Lord’s Recovery p 73

I'm sure that we could find dozens of citations like these if we kept looking. My question is, Why does LSM cite women as though having authority, independently presenting "crucial matters" and "great pillars" of doctrinal truth? Do they think their readership is so dull, or insipid, as to miss the glaring discrepancy?

If you go to the LSM website, and look at online publications by title, under 'G', there are only three authors listed: Watchman Nee, Witness Lee, and Mary E. McDonough.
Strong points aron. Methinks Lee failed to tell us that he and Nee were infected with Penn-Lewis's devilish Spirit-quenching Jezebel side. She killed the Welsh revival, and beguiled Evan Roberts' mind. She also believed born again Christian's could be demon possessed. Maybe she was right on that one, like she was with the tripartite man. Seems she knew Christian's could be demon possessed. Cuz she was. Yet Nee and Lee revered her.

Lee made me love her. I read her books. It took leaving the LC for me to discover the truth about her. Lee can't be trusted to tell the truth ... about her or Nee ... or about God.
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Old 08-15-2017, 05:11 AM   #155
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ZNP"Is there a basis in the Greek to say that the word teach in this chapter is somehow different from the other chapters?"

I don't know about the Greek part... but in general it appears Paul's concern here and in 1 Cor 11, 14.. and the special case in Rev 2, is about authority in God's government.

ZNP" Also, apart from the Apostles who gets to "define doctrine"? Wasn't the NT doctrine defined in the New Testament?"

True. But when these letters were written the saints did not have the NT. And even though we have had the NT for sometime that did not prevent heresies from Mary Baker Eddy and Ellen White from cropping up and others.

ZNP "Also what does "to be in quietness" mean? How is it distinct from "following dumb idols"?"

Paul knew the difference and all may prophesy so in quietness must be related to his primary concern... in the first point above.

Drake
This is also how I read it. The context of the portions that "forbid a woman to speak" are related to "authority in God's government" -- though I would just say decisions made by the church, especially related to the community of unbelievers and the God ordained authority that the church is to submit to. Quietness is clearly distinct from "following dumb idols" but in the context of the relation with local community suggests not provoking outrage, disturbances and other things that would prevent the church from existing in peace.

What has disturbed me the most about the general debate concerning women's role (not this thread in particular) is the total lack of context as people throw out the quotes. Every single company forbids their employees to speak to the press and and any inquiries by the press are to be directed to the proper authority. No one sees that as sexist but rather practical and prudent. It smacks of hypocrisy to me.
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Old 08-15-2017, 05:13 AM   #156
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I have never put forward a blanket prohibition of women teaching.

My OP was in response to someone who had a question about women in leadership positions, i.e. in the "circle of elders":

They asked:

I'll just ask you one thing: Who do you see, in the leadership circle of LC, is a woman?


I'm genuinely curious if you know any sister that is in leadership position because of and only because of her spirituality.


It is about women teaching doctrine to men without the covering of the brothers in the assembly. I presumed that this was of her own accord and not by virtue of being the wife of an elder.

Women in leadership positions and particularly unmarried women without the covering of her husband, has been a universally accepted prohibition in Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant/Reform churches for centuries.
How can women not be "in the circle of elders". Every single elder is to be "the husband of one wife" hence every single elder has a wife. How are these women not in the circle? Genesis 5 -- "male and female created He them and called their name Adam".

Yes, I knew many women in leadership positions in the LC, they were the wives of the elders. The elders will tell you and told you in their messages that 90% of the decisions regarding the church were influenced by the sisters. Their job was to merely say ok.

When I was in Taipei in the FTTT the office at Hall 3 for the training was run with an Iron fist by a sister, a wife of one of the leading elders.
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Old 08-15-2017, 06:36 AM   #157
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How can women not be "in the circle of elders". Every single elder is to be "the husband of one wife" hence every single elder has a wife. How are these women not in the circle? Genesis 5 -- "male and female created He them and called their name Adam".

Yes, I knew many women in leadership positions in the LC, they were the wives of the elders. The elders will tell you and told you in their messages that 90% of the decisions regarding the church were influenced by the sisters. Their job was to merely say ok.

When I was in Taipei in the FTTT the office at Hall 3 for the training was run with an Iron fist by a sister, a wife of one of the leading elders.
I don't really disagree with you, but might lower the 90% a little (really depends on the elder, and their wife). I said something along these lines in my earlier posts, such as #4. But the wives leading the church under the covering of their husbands is not deemed sufficient for many on this forum it would seem. It did not seem so for the person QOSTA raising the issues, who wanted to know if any women got to a leadership "position" on the basis of their own spirituality (not her husband's, presumably).
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Old 08-15-2017, 06:51 AM   #158
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I don't really disagree with you, but might lower the 90% a little (really depends on the elder, and their wife). I said something along these lines in my earlier posts, such as #4. But the wives leading the church under the covering of their husbands is not deemed sufficient for many on this forum it would seem. It did not seem so for the person QOSTA raising the issues, who wanted to know if any women got to a leadership "position" on the basis of their own spirituality (not her husband's, presumably).
That is why IMO Paul says what he does. 2/3 of the church is women, if you allow women to take leadership positions without men you marginalize men to the point that the church becomes 90% women with a few passive men who don't care. I have seen this played out in various churches with female leaders.

Also this does nothing to set a positive example for families.

As for the question about "did any women get a leadership position based on their own spirituality (not her husband's)" this I feel is the error. How exactly do we know what the woman's spirituality is? If her family is a mess, her husband is a mess, her children are a mess, but she is "spiritual"? You can have a ministry without being an elder. You can publish books, teach, evangelize, etc. Go for it. No one needs to "give you" a leadership position. But if you are truly "spiritual", taking care of widows and orphans, teaching the younger sisters, leading by example then who cares if someone "gives you" a leadership position.
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Old 08-17-2017, 02:47 AM   #159
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. . wives leading the church under the covering of their husbands is not deemed sufficient for many on this forum it would seem..
Of course there would be difference of opinion [interpretation] and even practice. I've met with believers where the women wouldn't even say, "Amen" after the men spoke because Paul said that they should be silent in church. If they had anything to say, they could say it to their husband at home. Paul wrote it, it's in the canon of scripture, case closed.

On the other hand, I've met with groups where the women could stand at the lectern and give a message on Sunday morning. Times have changed, societal roles have evolved, and to some extent the church meetings reflect this.

And I never felt led to argue with members of either group. Let each one(s) be led of the Lord as they see fit. We don't receive each other to argue or pass judgments. What I object to is the two-faced hypocrisy of saying one thing, and expecting universal conformity, and yet in one's own practice so blatantly disregarding it. Evoking Dora Yu or Peace Wang, as if their ministries could exist for five minutes with you.

Or saying, "Women can't teach in the church", and then waving citations of Penn-Lewis and McDonald et al as if they were independent arbiters of revealed truth; are you really that desperate for the veneer of credibility for your teachings? And is your audience truly that dull, unperceptive, and/or stupefied? Or, cowed and intimidated? It's hard to fathom that in the year 2017 such "ministry" could have much traction with the public.

But, I was there, once. Amen, Lord, amen; even so, come Lord Jesus.
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Old 08-17-2017, 07:40 AM   #160
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Aron>"Yes, the distinction is clear. Then why does LSM cite womens' teachings as if they had authority?"

But, is it? You say it is but then you say things as if it were not.

Aron, please clarify this. Do you agree or not agree with Paul's charge in I Timothy 2:12? Is it applicable today or was it for another place and time, outdated?

If you agree with it then how is it to be practiced? If you don't agree with it then why not and on what basis do you disregard it?

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Old 08-17-2017, 08:00 AM   #161
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Aron>"Yes, the distinction is clear. Then why does LSM cite womens' teachings as if they had authority?"

But, is it? You say it is but then you say things as if it were not.

Aron, please clarify this. Do you agree or not agree with Paul's charge in I Timothy 2:12? Is it applicable today or was it for another place and time, outdated?

If you agree with it then how is it to be practiced? If you don't agree with it then why not and on what basis do you disregard it?

Drake
I'm conservative, actually. But I don't force the issue. Others are obviously much more progressive, and I respect their convictions, and their passion. This is an issue where perhaps Paul put it best, "Let each be persuaded in his/her own mind."

Or, do you think we should divide the church in the name of [false] unanimity, here - especially when, as I've repeatedly said, the "Lord's Recovery" doesn't even practice what they preach? What gospel are you preaching, then - a 'Witness Lee is always right; even when he (and his Blended Minions) contradict themselves, or follow it selectively (why no head coverings), and ignore their own supposedly iron-clad directives' gospel?

Again, why did Lee cite women as authoritative sources? And why pretend that a Dora Yu or Peace Wang would get the 'right hand of fellowship' for their ministry, even for 5 minutes, like Paul and his ministry to the gentiles, coming alongside the twelve in Jerusalem? Why the glaring contradictions, and why such pretense? Because to end the pretense would end the fantasy? And to end the fantasy would end the ministry? And to end the ministry would end the church? Are you really built upon such sand?
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Old 08-17-2017, 09:26 AM   #162
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-1

Based on what you said is appears you do not agree with the Apostle Paul's charge in 1Tim 2:12 else you would not embrace those who disagree with it. Your take it or leave it view of the charge confirms it.

I understand your mission is to find some point of accusation against Witness Lee and the leading brothers as you have a history there and still a festering personal issue. If it were not so you would just as enthusiastically allow them to be persuaded in their own mind. But you don't.

Be that as it may...

Is Paul a hypocrite too? Does the charge in 1Tim 2:12 apply to Priscilla in regards to Apollos? Or is that an exception to the charge? Or is their something else in play?

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Old 08-17-2017, 10:10 AM   #163
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"Festering personal issue"? Really, Drake? Is that all ya got? So that is your well-thought out retort and display of advanced Local Church apologetic?

Don't be like Witness Lee and take genuine constructive criticism so personal. Maybe take a step back and actually read what people post before you fire off the "personal issue" blast. aron has been posting for many years on these forums and has never shown a propensity to make this about a personal offense or issue. As a matter of fact, I see very little of that around the place. I might be the worst offender you could dig up....so sue me....on second thought....
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Old 08-17-2017, 11:30 AM   #164
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Drake,

I "embrace those who disagree with my views", yes. Do you? What level of conformity do you demand before fellowship is allowed? It seems the "Lord's Recovery" programme demands total compliance on all points. The statement, "We receive everyone" is just a ruse to get them in, and locked into the Apostle. Then, "No differerences whatsoever" according to the Apostle. . . "absolutely identical". If you want that in writing, look at the footnotes in Revelations 2 & 3 RecV.

And the Programme Enforcers, like Ray Graver, Mel Porter, and Paul Hon would make sure that you got the message. No spiritual veneer from them; no "divine and mystical" euphemisms. No - "We do as we are told", per RG.

I have met, and continue to meet, with churches whose conservatism puts the "Lord's Recovery" to shame. All women wear head-coverings, not just those who want to. Women are literally silent in church. And you know what? They have maybe a 70 to 80% retention rate of the next generation. The LC "locality" that I met with maybe had a 10 to 20% retention rate. And that's being generous. You know why? Because the disconnect in the LC was so obvious. What was said vs what was actually done.

And the conservative group that I've met with never gave me a grilling on the "role of women in the church", or asked if I met with and received churches or groups who had women in authority. And I also met with a church started by a woman (Aimee Semple McPherson) and they never grilled me on my opinion of women in church. Live and let live. (But McPherson's group was much more unstable and with higher 'churn rate' than the conservative group).

Yet for you it's an issue. Fine. But my counsel is, be consistent in your application. Otherwise your retention rate will remain in the teens; because the stench of hypocrisy will be so strong as to drive away all but the most deluded naifs.
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Old 08-17-2017, 04:17 PM   #165
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I have met, and continue to meet, with churches whose conservatism puts the "Lord's Recovery" to shame. All women wear head-coverings, not just those who want to. Women are literally silent in church. And you know what? They have maybe a 70 to 80% retention rate of the next generation. The LC "locality" that I met with maybe had a 10 to 20% retention rate. And that's being generous. You know why? Because the disconnect in the LC was so obvious. What was said vs what was actually done.

It is true that more women in the Recovery should wear head coverings but the fact it is not rigidly enforced proves that we have the freedom of choice. We are not religious about it.
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Old 08-17-2017, 04:28 PM   #166
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It is true that more women in the Recovery should wear head coverings but the fact it is not rigidly enforced proves that we have the freedom of choice. We are not religious about it.
Why not?

There is far more scriptural mandate for women's head covering in the Bible than there is for "locality," your local ground of false distorted oneness.

Why are you so religious about that?
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Old 08-17-2017, 04:31 PM   #167
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Why not?

There is far more scriptural mandate for women's head covering in the Bible than there is for "locality," your local ground of false distorted oneness.

Why are you so religious about that?
Head coverings is a minor issue that's why.
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Old 08-17-2017, 04:54 PM   #168
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Head coverings is a minor issue that's why.
Minor?

Read I Corinthians 11 again. This matter is crucial! Read your footnotes again. The Apostle Paul placed this matter in the midst of his fellowship on the Lord's Table and the Lord's supper, highlighting His headship.

Listen to this: "I want you to know that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is the man, and the head of Christ is God." (11.2)

How can this be a minor issue? On the night Jesus died, He established this table.

The ground of locality is minor, but head covering is crucial.
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Old 08-17-2017, 05:00 PM   #169
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Minor?

Read I Corinthians 11 again. This matter is crucial! Read your footnotes again. The Apostle Paul placed this matter in the midst of his fellowship on the Lord's Table and the Lord's supper, highlighting His headship.

Listen to this: "I want you to know that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is the man, and the head of Christ is God." (11.2)

How can this be a minor issue? On the night Jesus died, He established this table.

The ground of locality is minor, but head covering is crucial.
Compared to the ground of locality which is about oneness, the symbol of the head covering would be minor.
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Old 08-17-2017, 05:17 PM   #170
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Drake,

I "embrace those who disagree with my views", yes. Do you? What level of conformity do you demand before fellowship is allowed? It seems the "Lord's Recovery" programme demands total compliance on all points. The statement, "We receive everyone" is just a ruse to get them in, and locked into the Apostle. Then, "No differerences whatsoever" according to the Apostle. . . "absolutely identical". If you want that in writing, look at the footnotes in Revelations 2 & 3 RecV.

And the Programme Enforcers, like Ray Graver, Mel Porter, and Paul Hon would make sure that you got the message. No spiritual veneer from them; no "divine and mystical" euphemisms. No - "We do as we are told", per RG.

I have met, and continue to meet, with churches whose conservatism puts the "Lord's Recovery" to shame. All women wear head-coverings, not just those who want to. Women are literally silent in church. And you know what? They have maybe a 70 to 80% retention rate of the next generation. The LC "locality" that I met with maybe had a 10 to 20% retention rate. And that's being generous. You know why? Because the disconnect in the LC was so obvious. What was said vs what was actually done.

And the conservative group that I've met with never gave me a grilling on the "role of women in the church", or asked if I met with and received churches or groups who had women in authority. And I also met with a church started by a woman (Aimee Semple McPherson) and they never grilled me on my opinion of women in church. Live and let live. (But McPherson's group was much more unstable and with higher 'churn rate' than the conservative group).

Yet for you it's an issue. Fine. But my counsel is, be consistent in your application. Otherwise your retention rate will remain in the teens; because the stench of hypocrisy will be so strong as to drive away all but the most deluded naifs.
Okay Aron. Thanks for the advice. Sorry I distracted us from the discussion we were having.

Is Paul a hypocrite too? Does the charge Paul made in 1 Tim 2:12 apply to Priscilla in regard to Apollos? Is that an exception to the charge? Or is something else in play?

Drake
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Old 08-18-2017, 12:20 AM   #171
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