New Testament Church Proliferation Digest


Spreading the Gospel via House Churches



NT Church Proliferation Digest Wednesday, August 21 2002 Volume 02 : Number 145
RE: [NTCP] What are apostles?
[NTCP] Re: NT Church Proliferation Digest V2 #144
RE: [NTCP] Re: NT Church Proliferation Digest V2 #144
Re: [NTCP] What are apostles?
Re: [NTCP] What are apostles?
RE: [NTCP] What are apostles?
[NTCP] Women Elders: 2 John - Reply to Dick and Keith
Re: [NTCP] What are apostles? - women in leadership
Re: [NTCP] What are apostles? - female bishops
RE: [NTCP] What are apostles? - authority of women
Re: [NTCP] What are apostles?
Re: [NTCP] What are apostles? - female bishops
Re: [NTCP] What are apostles?

Date: Tue, 20 Aug 2002 22:28:01 +0200
From: "Keith Smith" <castillofuerte * airtel>
Subject: RE: [NTCP] What are apostles?

Is it too simple to differentiate between "elder" = an older person and
"elder"= one appointed to an office in the local church. I can find no
scripture that indicates, to me at least, that all older people had
authority to lead the local church nor that all held office in the local
church.

Getting older every day,
Keith


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Date: Tue, 20 Aug 2002 17:17:40 EDT
From: JoelBRJr * aol
Subject: [NTCP] Re: NT Church Proliferation Digest V2 #144
I realize that I am new to NT:CPD, however, did I miss the part where Paul
told Priscilla to not speak and only allow Aquilla to do the correcting and
teaching Apollos?

Also in the post which read:
where i do stop short is women elders. These do not appear in >
> the bible and therefore I think that we have to be carefull here.

I respectfully point out that musical instruments are also not mentioned in
the NT. Should we remove instruments as some denominations have?

In Joel 2:28 (repeated in Acts 2:17), is not part of prophesying proclaiming?
Is it not to edify the church? Then if women who are given the gift by God
cannot proclaim it in the church, how does their prophecy edify the church?
And if God gives the gift, and it is to be proclaimed, whose authority is
being usurped if anyone stops the woman from proclaiming it in obedience to
God?

Respectfully asked,
Joel


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Date: Tue, 20 Aug 2002 16:43:31 -0500
From: "Tony Dale" <tdale * thekarisgroup>
Subject: RE: [NTCP] Re: NT Church Proliferation Digest V2 #144
Great comments, Joel. You are sounding like your Biblical counterpart!
Tony Dale

Thanks,
Tony= tdale * thekarisgroup=20
www.house2house


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Date: Tue, 20 Aug 2002 23:59:26 -0400
From: jferris <jferris154 * mac>
Subject: Re: [NTCP] What are apostles?

Keith Smith wrote:

>Is it too simple to differentiate between "elder" = an older person and
>"elder"= one appointed to an office in the local church.
>
Dear Keith,

It gets kind of complicated when we substitute our male dominated
presuppositions, not to say traditions, for the obvious quality of
wisdom and insight which accompany gender neutral maturity.

> I can find no scripture that indicates, to me at least, that all older people had
>authority to lead the local church nor that all held office in the local
>church.
>
Neither can I. It takes more than age, but whatever the other
qualifications might be they don't appear to me to be gender limited. If
Phebe could be a deacon, Romans 16:9, then Priscilla can be an elder.

Yours in Christ,

Jay


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Date: Wed, 21 Aug 2002 07:01:38 -0400
From: "Linkh * bigfoot" <Linkh * worldnet.att>
Subject: Re: [NTCP] What are apostles?

I'm not sure about Greek, but I wouldn't be surprised if it functioned like
Spanish-- a masculine plural can refer to either all males or males and
females in Spanish. 'Elders' using Spanish rules could be all male or male
and female.

The issue, here, is that Paul said that the bishop should be a man-- a 'one
woman man' i.e., the husband of one wife.

If bishops are to be women, why did Paul say that they should be men?

Link Hudson


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Date: Wed, 21 Aug 2002 07:16:01 -0400
From: "Richard Wright" <wright47 * sc.rr>
Subject: RE: [NTCP] What are apostles?

Jay,

I understand the logic of your inferences, but I believe it does not
hold in this application.

The order of authority, God/husband/wife/children, is clear in
scripture, and so is God's intention that women not rule over men. Keep
in mind the heavy burden of responsibility that goes with this, and
domination becomes a non-issue. It's a matter of order and service.

This does not limit a woman's ability to minister, even to men; it
simply sets God's order of authority/responsibility.

Blessings,

Dick
Phil.3:12-14


------- <><><> -------


Date: Wed, 21 Aug 2002 07:44:04 -0400
From: "Samuel Buick" <aom_canada * hotmail>
Subject: [NTCP] Women Elders: 2 John - Reply to Dick and Keith

Hi again!

Just a question. In Second John we read of the righteous lady. My study
shows the following:

2 John1:1 The elder unto the elect <1588> lady <2959> and her children ,
whom I love in the truth and not I only, but also all they that have known
the truth

1588 eklektov eklektos ek-lek-tos' from 1586; TDNT-4:181,505; adj AV-elect
16, chosen 7; 23 1) picked out, chosen
1a) chosen by God,
1a3) choice, select, i.e. the best of its kind or class,
excellence preeminent: applied to certain individual
Christians

2959 Kuria Kuria koo-ree'-ah
from 2962; TDNT-3:1095,486; n f AV-lady 2; 2 1) a Christian woman to whom
the second Epistle of John is addressed

translators haven't had the guts to translate this word which is the
feminine form of KURIOS

2962 kuriov kurios koo'-ree-os
from kuros (supremacy); TDNT-3:1039,486; n m AV-Lord 667, lord 54, master
11, sir 6, Sir 6, misc 4; 748 1) he to whom a person or thing belongs, about
which he has
power of deciding; master, lord
1a) the possessor and disposer of a thing
1a1) the owner; one who has control of the person, the master
1a2) in the state: the sovereign, prince, chief, the Roman emperor
1b) is a title of honour expressive of respect and reverence,
with which servants greet their master
1c) this title is given to: God, the Messiah

John addresses her as the chosen lord, or leader and it is obvious further
on that she is in charge of a church that meets in her house. He assigns her
responsiblity for keeping the false apostle/prophets/teachers out of her
house church. Now if she isn't the elder/pastor/leader of the church, what
is she?

I believe historical bias against women in oversight is at issue clearly
from the grammatical historical context of this passage. So why not have
women as elders?

Sam

>From: ScogginsTravel * ccmail.lfa
>Reply-To: ntcp * homechurch
>To: ntcp * homechurch
>Subject: Re[2]: [NTCP] What are apostles?
>Date: Mon, 19 Aug 2002 15:15:00 +0000
>
> Dear Keith,
> This is exactly my postion. I have found few who agree. Great to
>hear!
> Thanks for your encouragement. We actually have more women deacons
> than men.
> Dick
>
>
>______________________________ Reply Separator
>_________________________________
>Subject: RE: [NTCP] What are apostles?
>Author: ntcp * homechurch at lfa-internet
>Date: 8/17/2002 3:37 PM
>
>
>Personally I have no problem at all with women fulfilling any of the 5 fold
>ministries, where i do stop short is women elders. These do not appear in
>the bible and therefore I think that we have to be carefull here. I do
>admit
>women deacons and have one in the church here.
>
>Blessings
>Keith
>
~ ~ ~ ntcp info page: http://world-missions/planting ~ ~ ~

info page: http://world-missions.org/planting <><><>


Date: Wed, 21 Aug 2002 08:05:48 -0400
From: "Samuel Buick" <aom_canada * hotmail>
Subject: Re: [NTCP] What are apostles? - women in leadership

Hi All:

1. There is not one Scripture in the Bible that forbids women from
preaching, but on the contrary, there are many verses that encourage both
men and women to preach the Gospel.

2. The Bible teaches that God is not a respecter of persons, and He will use
any and all who will yield to Him, regardless of race, age, or sex.

Galatians 3:28 - "...neither male nor female...for ye are all one in Christ
Jesus."

Acts 10:34 - "...God is no respecter of persons...."

Moses said in Numbers 11:29, "Would God that all the Lord's people were
prophets, and that the Lord would put His spirit upon them!"

The crying need of the hour is for more laborers. It is a trick of the enemy
to try to down rate thousands of our faithful laborers just because they
were born females.

3. The Great Commission, Mark 16:15, "Preach the Gospel," is to ALL
believers, and to all the church of Jesus Christ. The command to "preach the
Gospel" is to both male and female.

4. It is an undeniable fact that God has called and anointed thousands of
women to preach the Gospel. The Full Gospel organizations have hundreds of
licensed and ordained women who are preaching, teaching, evangelizing,
pastoring, and doing mission work with the signs following their ministry.
God is using them for the salvation of the lost, deliverance from sin, gifts
of the Spirit, and infilling of the Holy Spirit.

The Bible says, "Touch not mine anointed and do my prophets no harm." And
may we be reminded of the Scripture in Acts 5:39, "If it be of God, ye
cannot overthrow it; lest haply ye be found even to fight against God."

When someone says, "God does not call women to preach," it is like saying
that God does not baptize with the Holy Spirit today. We know better,
because we have witnessed and experienced it with our own ears and eyes.

I would be afraid to condemn women preachers, lest I would be found to be
fighting against God, and to be committing the vile sin of attributing the
works of the Holy Spirit to the devil.

5. Women preachers are a fulfillment of Bible Prophecy and another sign of
Christ's soon return to earth (Joel 2:28; Acts 2:17-18).

6. The Bible declares that women will prophesy: 1 Cor. 11:5, "For every
woman that prayeth or prophesieth...."

Both the Hebrew (Nebrah), and Greek (Proph) used for prophetess means
(female preacher). (See Young's Concordance, Pg. 780.)

The word "Prophet" means a public expounder.

The word "Prophesy" means to speak forth, or flow forth. The Bible says in 1
Cor. 14:3, "But he that prophesieth speaketh unto MEN to edification, and
exhortation and comfort."

The dictionary says, prophesy is "to speak under divine inspiration...to
preach."

Therefore we learn from the original translation, from the Bible
interpretation, and from the dictionary, that to prophesy means more than to
tell the future, but it is to speak publicly about the past, present, or
future. It is to preach under the anointing of the Holy Spirit.

The Old and New Testament prophets and prophetesses were preachers of God's
Word.

Even if the words prophet and preacher could be separated, how could anyone
prophesy to bring exhortation, comfort and edification to the church, if she
were forbidden to speak in church and was to keep silent?

Would God inspire and anoint someone to do something that was wrong and
sinful???

* (There is a difference between a prophet, and the gift of prophecy.)

7. God called and used women preachers in the Old Testament.

a. DEBORAH - Judges 4:4-5. Deborah was a Judge for both civil and criminal
cases. The children of Israel came to her for judgment. She was the chief
ruler of Israel for 40 years, giving orders to the Generals and all the
army. She did the work of an evangelist, prophetess, Judge, and a preacher.
God gave her authority over the mighty (Judges 5:13).

b. MIRIAM - Exodus 15:20; Numbers 12:1; Micah 6:4. She was a Prophetess and
a Song Leader in Israel.

c. HULDAH - 2 Kings 22:14. Five men went to Sister Huldah and communed with
her. She spoke to a congregation of men concerning the book of the Law. A
female preached to a man's congregation, and her message was taken to the
nation and produced a revival.

d. MAHER-SHALAL-HASH-BAZ'S MOTHER - Isaiah 8:3. She was a prophetess.

8. God called and used women preachers in the New Testament.

a. The first message of the Resurrection of Christ was spoken by women to a
group of men.

b. Anna - Luke 2:36-38. She must have prophesied in church, because she did
not depart from the temple.

c. Phillip had 4 daughters who prophesied. Acts 21:9.

d. Priscilla assisted Paul in his revival meeting and even taught Apollos in
the way of the Lord more perfectly.

e. Phebe - Romans 16:1-2. Paul commended Phebe to the Church at Rome and
requested that they assist her in her business. She was one of Paul's
assistants in the work of the Lord and delivered the Book of Romans to the
people from the hand of Paul.

9. There is no sound reason why a woman or man should not preach the Gospel.
There is a desperate need in the church for more workers. Laborers are few,
and God will use any and all who will go for Him. Some say God will not use
a woman to preach, because "The woman was deceived," but remember Romans
5:12: "Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world." It seems to
indicate that Adam was just as guilty as Eve in the fall of man. If anyone
should be kept from preaching because of sin, it would be Adam. But God does
not forbid anyone from preaching, because of Adam's or Eve's sin.

10. 1 Cor. 14: 34-35 does not say anything about women preachers. If Paul
intended this verse as a general rule to bar all women from speaking in
church, then they cannot teach Sunday School, testify, pray, prophesy, sing,
or even get saved, and this would contradict the rest of the Bible (Acts
2:4; Acts 2:16-18).

Paul was rather dealing with a particular problem in the church. Women were
not educated as were the men in that day; therefore the women would talk
back and forth to their husbands in church and ask questions concerning the
sermon. Paul said, "If they will learn anything, let them ask their husbands
at home; for it is a shame for women to speak in the church." If they want
to talk things over let them wait until they get home. This rule is still
good for the church today, where people are talking and causing confusion in
the church service. They should not speak in church. (Not in the back of the
church either before or after services.)

If a woman cannot speak in church, then she cannot speak in prayer meeting,
young people's service, etc., for who can deny that Sunday School and Prayer
meeting, and Youth work are parts of church? Christ's Church is not a
building, but rather it is found where two or three are gathered together in
His name, whether at a street meeting, in a tent, a home, church, classroom
or anywhere else.

11. 1 Timothy 2:12 is not a blanket rule for all women of all churches. If
it were, then the women could not speak at all, for the same verse that
tells them not to teach also tells them to be silent.

If all women had to keep silent in church, then that would be promoting
disobedience to God, for they could not prophesy, pray, testify, sing,
exhort, do personal work, or even get saved.

Whenever an interpretation to a verse contradicts the rest of the teaching
of the Bible, we know this interpretation is incorrect, for the Holy Spirit
will never contradict His own Word.

This is the chief verse that is used to oppose women preaching and yet it
says nothing about preaching, nor does it say anything about a public
worship or church service. But, on the contrary, this verse is giving
instructions to wives as to how they were to conduct themselves in regard to
their husband. Paul says in 1 Cor. 14:35, "And if they will LEARN anything,
let them ask their husbands at home." Now he states in 1 Tim. 2:12 that the
woman should learn in silence, and should not usurp authority over the man.
Paul is dealing with more of a home problem than a church problem.

This verse still applies to us today. It is wrong for a woman to usurp
authority over her husband (in church, home, or any place else) as was the
case in Paul's day. She should not try to teach him or speak words that
would cause discord and confusion, but should rather be silent and in
subjection to her husband.

It is also to be understood that if anyone, whether man or woman, is
usurping authority over the God-given leadership of the church, she or he is
to be silent, and not to teach, or act in such a way that would create
discord in the assembly.

12. Some have used Titus 1:6-7, "If any be blameless, the husband of one
wife, having faithful children...", but there is a difference between a
preacher and a bishop. For I was an Evangelist and now am a Pastor, but I am
not a Bishop (Overseer), and most Pastors are not.

If God called a single man with no children to be a Bishop, as Paul was,
surely this verse is not opposed to it, nor would this scripture oppose a
woman Bishop if she was called of God for the work, as was Deborah.

What this verse does teach is that a person who is to be a Bishop must not
have two living companions, either husbands or wives.

The Bible often speaks of "man" when it refers to both men and and women
inclusively. The word "mankind" also includes both men and women. For an
example of this word usage see 1 Cor. 13:1 - "Though I speak with the
tongues of MEN and angels...." This word "MEN" includes women as well, for
we do not have one language for men and another for women.

13. To condemn women preachers and women church workers is a serious
offense, because God has stamped His approval on them by His Spirit over and
over again, and who is man to fight against the Spirit of God?

To condemn women preachers and women church workers is in a sense to claim
they are doing wrong and committing sin...and all those who support them and
listen to them are having a part in that sin.

For anyone to do this, he must condemn approximately 99% of all the
Spirit-filled believers and the vast majority of all of Christianity.

"Of a truth, I perceive that God is no respecter of persons..." (Acts
10:34).


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Date: Wed, 21 Aug 2002 08:14:26 -0400
From: "Samuel Buick" <aom_canada * hotmail>
Subject: Re: [NTCP] What are apostles? - female bishops

Dear Link:

Paul may have said that the bishop should be a man, but let us never forget
the historical context of the passage. The culture determined to a great
degree whom was appointed as far as the gender is concerned. Would he not
have said the bishop could have been a woman, if the culture of the day was
predominantly matriarchal than patriarchal in nature? I think he would
have. Gender has little to do with it. The culture of the day has great
influence in defining the form and structure of the wineskin, and that
includes the kind and type of servant leadership of it as well.
Sam


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Date: Wed, 21 Aug 2002 08:21:59 -0400
From: "Samuel Buick" <aom_canada * hotmail>
Subject: RE: [NTCP] What are apostles? - authority of women

Dick:

What do we then say or do about all the female "elders" "apostles" and such
in the far east and middle east that are planting and overseeing countless
thousands of house churches and networks? Are they false leaders? Are they
in opposition to God's authority? I think not. I still say our culture, and
in this case the culture of the NT has more influence in determining the
leadership of women in the church. A woman's authority is not political in
nature, and neither should it be in the church, which is why I find it a
comfort to read of the lady in 2 John. She definitely was an elder who had
authority in the church that met in her home. I don't understand all the
difficulty people are having with this.

In fact the argument can and should be made that women should exercise MORE
authority than men in the home and those who gather in the home, for in the
OT and the NT culture of the day, both Hebraic and Greco-Roman, they did
RULE the home and govern over the entire household, while the men took care
of politics, work outside the home, the social life outside the home, etc..
The case can be made for women having a whole lot more authority in their
day than in our own.

Sam


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Date: Wed, 21 Aug 2002 08:36:02 -0400
From: jferris <jferris154 * mac>
Subject: Re: [NTCP] What are apostles?

Link wrote:

I'm not sure about Greek, but I wouldn't be surprised if it functioned like
Spanish-- a masculine plural can refer to either all males or males and
females in Spanish. 'Elders' using Spanish rules could be all male or male
and female.

The issue, here, is that Paul said that the bishop should be a man-- a 'one
woman man' i.e., the husband of one wife.

If bishops are to be women, why did Paul say that they should be men?

Dear Link,

Here's the problem, and this is the reason that I mentioned Phebe. Phebe is not identified by a female form of the word "Deacon", but the same gender, same word "Deacon" as it is applied to men, where it is written that "Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well." 1 Timothy 3:12. Should I therefore conclude that Phebe had a wife?

Where ruling the home well is concerned, it may be more difficult to find a "Proverbs 31" husband than it is the find a "Proverbs 31" wife.

Richard Wright wrote:

>Jay,
>
>I understand the logic of your inferences, but I believe it does not
>hold in this application.
>
>The order of authority, God/husband/wife/children, is clear in
>scripture, and so is God's intention that women not rule over men. Keep
>in mind the heavy burden of responsibility that goes with this, and
>domination becomes a non-issue. It's a matter of order and service.
>
>This does not limit a woman's ability to minister, even to men; it
>simply sets God's order of authority/responsibility.
>
Dear Dick,

Actually, it "... sets God's order" of dying, of laying down lives.
Perhaps if we spent more time focusing on that aspect of Kingdom
authority, The Lord might give us greater clarity on the kind at which
we've been failing so miserably for lo these many years.

I think for too long, our focus has been on authority in the Gentile
sense, and not enough on reigning in the servant or Kingdom of God
sense. The fact is, In the Kingdom of God, position does not determine
service, rather service determines position. We've had a lot of years
now where the pattern has been that males go off to school in order to
get a position out of which they can "serve", but that's not the way
Jesus taught or did it. If I understand Him correctly, we are supposed
to serve, out of which comes position. This has the added benefit of our
knowing what we are doing by the time the position is bestowed. No
amount of schooling can do that.

The servant of all is the greatest of all. We are not going to see the
Kingdom of God until we get our eyes off of positions and titles, and
begin to see substance, and maturity. The Passover Lamb must be cooked,
it must not be eaten raw, where servanthood is concerned, it looks to me
like, in every culture I have ever seen, the women are more cooked then
the men. Her husband may take his seat in the city gate, but I hope
there is a good reason for him to be there, and not just a lot of
ecclesiastical fru fru.

In any case, "It's either all grace or its no grace at all." It is the
grace of God to serve, the grace of God to rule, and the grace of God to
be in submission. Keep in mind that "headship" has more to do with
"source", than it does with domination. Were talking about overseeing
the show, not running it.

As a practical matter on those occasions when I've seen it come closest
to working right, a wife will lean over to her husband, nudge him,
wisper in his ear, and then he will say or do what is required. Now,
that is a beautiful witness of parts functioning as when, provided the
attitudes are right, but I don't think it has to stop working when there
is no husband, or he has stepped out of the room.

I believe, that the strongest case for male government is to be made
from the Old Testament pattern of male elders seated in the city gate,
but there are two cautions that I would have about leaning too hard on
that pattern. The first is that it was Old Testament, and the second is
that, it was a city, not an institution.

A city has geographical integrity, an institution, typically does not.

Yours in Christ,

Jay


------- <><><> -------


Date: Wed, 21 Aug 2002 10:06:07 EDT
From: TheologusCrucis * cs
Subject: Re: [NTCP] What are apostles? - female bishops
Sam,

You wrote:
> Paul may have said that the bishop should be a man, but let us never forget
> the historical context of the passage. The culture determined to a great
> degree whom was appointed as far as the gender is concerned. Would he not
> have said the bishop could have been a woman, if the culture of the day was
> predominantly matriarchal than patriarchal in nature? I think he would
> have. Gender has little to do with it. The culture of the day has great
> influence in defining the form and structure of the wineskin, and that
> .

"And I do not permit a woman to teach or have authority over a man, but to be
in silence. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived,
but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression. Nevertheless she will
be saved in childbearing if they continue in faith, love, and holiness, with
self-control (NKJV 1 Tim. 2:12-15)."

Gender had everything to do with it, Sam, as I don't know any males that
could be saved in childbearing!. Not only was Paul's teaching to Timothy
cultural, his gender roles were based on the order of creation as well. It
can't be explained away as cultural that easily.

But what does this controversy matter, anyway? Most house church that I have been to
don't believe in anyone having authority over anybody -- it would break the
harmony of the commune ;o)

TC


------- <><><> -------


Date: 21 Aug 2002 10:52:12 -0400
From: Mike Sangrey <msangrey * BlueFeltHat>
Subject: Re: [NTCP] What are apostles?

On Wed, 2002-08-21 at 07:01, Linkh * bigfoot wrote:
> I'm not sure about Greek, but I wouldn't be surprised if it functioned like
> Spanish-- a masculine plural can refer to either all males or males and
> females in Spanish. 'Elders' using Spanish rules could be all male or male
> and female.
>
> The issue, here, is that Paul said that the bishop should be a man-- a 'one
> woman man' i.e., the husband of one wife.
>
> If bishops are to be women, why did Paul say that they should be men?
>

I've asked this rather obvious question, too. And, by `obvious' I mean
to say that the question sort of jumps off the page and needs to be
appropriately answered or the implication needs to be simply believed.

The answer given to me, and I'm not convinced yet, is that the "one
wifed man" (MIAS GUNAIKOS ANDRA) was their way of saying `monogamous'.
That is, it was an idiom which when taken as a unit had a certain
meaning not necessarily divisible into its parts. Expressions like
"it's raining cats and dogs" or "go take a flying leap" are similar.

What I've needed, and haven't really gotten my hands on yet, are
citations which support this. However, on the other hand, placing the
genitive before the noun to which it modifies adds emphasis to the "one
wifeness" (if you will). Why did Paul do that? There's explanations of
why this is so, but they seem somewhat strained given the context of
"not being a drunkard, not getting into fist fights, and not greedy."
Gosh, even I have those qualifications. The point is that the expression
does, to my ear, sound like an idiom.

I still think the major issue of women being elders has more to do with
a misunderstanding of what elders/bishops actually do. We seem to
always define the function in terms of power. And that's not the
role--not for women, and not for men.

Paul, in Phil. 3 addresses the "mature" (KJV has "perfect") in vs 15.
In the context Paul tells these mature people to follow his example.
And what was that example? It's 3:7-11. "Fellowship of His
sufferings": interesting expression. That is the `how' of standing
firm (cf 3:17, 4:1, 9).

Mike Sangrey
msangrey * BlueFeltHat
Landisburg, Pa.
"The first one last wins."
"A net of highly cohesive details reveals the truth."


End of New Testament Church Proliferation Digest V2 #145

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