So Then, How Should Men Lead? -- By: Howard L. Bixby

Journal: Journal of Ministry and Theology
Volume: JMAT 12:1 (Spring 2008)
Article: So Then, How Should Men Lead?
Author: Howard L. Bixby


So Then,
How Should Men Lead?

Howard L. Bixby

Vice President for Seminary Academics
Seminary Dean
Professor of Church Leadership and Growth
Baptist Bible Seminary, Clarks Summit, Pennsylvania

If one consistently utilizes a literal, grammatical, historical, contextual hermeneutic, the biblical evidence seems to overwhelmingly teach that the pastoral office of the New Testament church is to be filled by males. The previous studies in this series have demonstrated this fact through examining the numerous biblical texts that give insight on the subject. This has been the historic position of the Bible-believing church.

In spite of the teaching of the text, there has been a strong movement during the last thirty years to establish women pastors as the norm. Recent Protestant seminary enrollments indicate that when combining all seminaries in the U.S., the female enrollment is approaching fifty percent. Some seminaries will obviously have majorities who are women.

The general secular media of America has picked up the issue of women as pastors and frequently asserts the seeming injustice of not calling and ordaining women to be pastors, in spite of what the Bible says:

The secular world is ready to confer upon women the loftiest mantles of leadership. Will God’s own people stand in the way? When church leaders quote texts written in the first century to people living in the 21st century, do we not sound like my Southern forebears who tried to stop the abolitionist movement (and later the civil rights movement) by quoting the Bible?

The irony here is palpable. An institution that prides itself on being the conscience of society has become a barrier to half of its members reaching their full potential.1

The political correctness of our day, the feminist movement, and some well-intentioned religious people have created an environment in which it can be difficult to say, “Thus saith the Lord….” on a topic like “Women Pastors and The Word of God.”

Not all women who live godly lives and influence through their pen and person agree with the political correctness of the current secular and religious advocates of female pastors. Elisabeth Elliot has a different view:

There has been an attempt to impute guilt to the Church for denying to women equal status with men: why must the Church be so irrelevant, so obscurantist, so implacable? The Church, in painful self-doubt, is asking whether the time may have come to jettison certain principles and practices that have become highly distasteful to the modern pala...

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