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To Boldly Go Where No One Has Gone Before (2)

March 20, 2013

Recently my stance on the full inclusion of women in the Body of Christ as elders and such has been called into question.  In response I am re-posting one of my very first blogs concerning this important topic.


I have always loved the ideology behind all things Star Trek.  Since the shows inception in the 1960′s it has always preached and presented a universe based on inclusion and equality of all life forms.  Along the way Trek has even corrected itself to be even more inclusive.  When the original series began the mantra was, “To Boldly Go Where No Man Has Gone Before.”  Not exactly inclusive of females, but when The Next Generation premiered in the late 1980′s they humbly corrected that phrase to be the more inclusive and accurate, “To Boldly Go Where No One Has Gone Before.”

The equality of all races, genders, social classes, and ages is a noble and lofty goal.  A goal that some seem to be still threatened by.  Even the Church has had difficulty living up to such high ideals.  Paul, an apostle, addressed this important topic in his letter to the Galatians where he wrote, “In Christ’s family there can be no division into Jew and non-Jew, slave and free, male and female.  Among us you are all equal.  That is, we are all in a common relationship with Jesus Christ.”  (The Message)

In this post I am just going to focus on the need, no the Biblical command, to fully include women in all aspects of BEing the Church.  Because there are still many churches out there that do not allow for the full participation of women in ministry or any sort of leadership.  All this does is cripple the church by not allowing 50% of its members to fully participate in the mission of the church.  That is like going into battle with both arms tied behind your back or both legs non-functional.  It just does not make good sense.

Jesus NEVER marginalized women during HIS time here on planet earth.  Some point to the fact that none of the original apostles were women, but that could be for any number of reasons and not male exclusivity.  The fact is that in the book of  Romans, Junias, a female, was called, “Outstanding among the apostles.”

In my relational Church experience over the last 35 years we have always valued women as full equals in life and ministry.  Because of this we have been totally blessed with the fullness that only manifests itself when the WHOLE body is allowed to function as it was designed when we come together.  For those of you who still struggle with the concept of every member, every gender, every age ministry….”I appeal to you brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another so that there may be no divisions among you and that you may be perfectly united in mind and thought.” (1 Corinthians 1:10)  And to me, “NO DIVISIONS”, means “NO DIVISIONS” period.

Love and……

Kirk Out !


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  1. "BK" permalink

    Hi, Chris. I mentioned in my last comment (and then read this so thought I’d comment before going back to making tents) that the Lord told me to accept being a pastor in order that I could make the step of coming out and stepping down from the title and position of such. As a woman, that was what He had to walk me through…..have spent most of my formative spiritual years in a group who did not recognize women in positions of ‘five fold ministry’ or ‘pulpit ministry’. I was one who accepted that and it really didn’t matter to me because I freely did & spoke what I felt He led me to. I think this is a subject worth discussing and would love to hear the thoughts of those here on both sides. Thanks, “BK”

    • "BK" permalink

      Oops! This should read “HAD spent……”. Sorry about that! “BK”

  2. Seeing that BK has opened the discussion, I’d like to chime in. Like many of Chris’ posts, this one is excellent for discussion. I especially appreciate BK’s attitude and willingness to hear about both sides of this issue. That is a welcome attitude and appropriate for those claiming the name of Christ.

    I want to review some former research I’ve done in relation to this post and pray about what I want to present before I comment here. Therefore I will only say today that I wholeheartedly disagree that women can or ever should become elders in any capacity among the saints and that women being excluded from certain roles among the saints has absolutely nothing to do with equality.

    Men and woman are equal in Christ. That issue very few if any Christians debate. The issue revolves around whether women should take upon themselves roles that have traditionally, and from my vantage point been scripturally reserved for men. That is the real issue.

    I’d also like to point out one more thing here. This issue of whether doctrine or relationship should be primary in a believer’s life is very important and has a bearing upon EVERY ONE of these issues we discuss. I personally am going to make this a major study in one of my own posts this year as I find it that important in these trying times. Unless your blind or simply not paying attention, almost every major section or movement of professing “Christiandom” has, or is in the process of jettisoning the emphasis upon Scripture for a more “mystical” faith that experiences Jesus. This is an obvious trend found in the Purpose Driven Movement, Emergent Church, New Apostolic Reformation and Word Faith segments of what is being called Christian. The combined numbers of those affiliated with these groups above numbers in the tens of millions and doesn’t include the Catholic Church which has always promoted a “mystical faith.” It is also widely known that many if not all of those who “lead” various groups affiliated with these movements above claim to “hear from God” despite almost all of them being obviously apostate. That is not in any way meant to retract from my own belief that we can hear God through the Spirit and that He does indeed direct our lives. It is meant to be a serious warning to anyone who would minimize the Scriptures to their own harm and to the detriment of others. Maybe someday we can return to Tims question he posed to Chris a while back: “Do you actually expect me to accept that you hear from God because you say so” (a major paraphrase to be sure, sorry Tim) Actually despite Tim being kinda an outsider from the general consensus among many of us “out of the box types,” he had many excellent questions recently- none of which were adequately addressed by any of us. That’s not anyone’s fault as only so much can be said under these limited circumstances. The present topic could easily span a week of daily non stop interaction had we each had the time.

    One last note. Let’s take a little initiative to take people at their word for now and separate our doctrinal distinctives from the tendency to attack one another’s characters. The more each of us shares the more vunerable we make ourselves one to another. That should never be used as an opportunity to attack anyone else or prove ourselves “right.” Intimacy comes with a price and we each do well to remember that.

    Personally I have nothing new to offer, though God may lead me to share some things you may or may not have previously considered about this topic. My comments will have nothing to do with fear or an attempt to limit or minimize the blessed contribution of women everywhere in the Spirit. That said, the more important issue is not to slight or minimize what is clearly, although not legally expressed in the Scriptures as to the roles men and women are to assume in life and in the service of their King.

    More to come…..

  3. Support you 100%!

    For one thing, take a look at the magnificent women who surrounded Jesus and ministered to him during his earthly ministry, at the cross and at the empty tomb. So also with the apostle Paul. Check out the Gospel narratives, the Acts, the Epistles. Get the broad sweep, the whole picture (in apprecation of a masterpiece, we could easily focus on irrelevant details to the extent that we never get to appreciate the larger canvas and gasp ‘Wow!!’)

    Secondly, I’ve had the joy of travelling quite widely. I well recall a single woman missionary (in her thirties) in Central China, with whom I had the privilege of working in snow conditions for a few days, open toilet (you didn’t need paper, the icy breeze did it for you – well almost!), etc. Tell you what, she would put many Christian men to shame in terms of cross-cultural acumen, wisdom, ecclesiology, devotion to Jesus, humility and honour, perseverance and sheer hard (including manual) work!

    My wife and I have also witnessed the wonderful role of women, especially in the organic churches we are currently involved in – no clergy-laity divide, no male-female divide, etc. We DID experience some women who manipulated men (and women) in leadership in the last institutional church we pastored (7 years ago). But that’s another story.

    Truth has to embrace reality – let’s get real.

    Love to all…

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