Reasons Women Should Lead -- By: Matt Messner

Journal: Priscilla Papers
Volume: PP 14:2 (Spring 2000)
Article: Reasons Women Should Lead
Author: Matt Messner

Reasons Women Should Lead

Should Women Be Allowed To Teach, Preach And Be Ordained In The Church? A Pastor Shares His Personal Study Of This Question.

Matt Messner

Matt Messner is assistant pastor at Eastside Foursquare Church (, Bothell, WA, where he serves with his wife, Heidi, who also is an ordained minister. He is completing his M.A. at Fuller Theological Seminary. On May 7 he will compete in the Men’s Olympic Trials Marathon.

I was in our church lobby between services when a man approached me, shaking his head and staring at our church bulletin. “You mean that you have women pastors here?”

“Yes,” I replied. Our senior pastor’s wife is in fact the copastor of the church.

“See, I told you,” interjected the man’s wife.

“We like this church a lot,” continued the man, “but I had no idea you had women pastors.”

I tried to assure him that this could be explained biblically. Still, I was unclear then about the textual and cultural explanations that I had been taught.

That conversation was similar to others I have had throughout my ministry; this has been especially true because I am married to a woman who is ordained and has a strong sense of calling to pastoral leadership and teaching. These are among the factors that motivated me to study the issue for myself and to write this article. In it I will examine the subject of women being involved in Christian leadership and the degree of leadership in which it is appropriate for them to be involved.

I will examine the different views regarding this issue and give a brief summary of the New Testament account of women in leadership. I will give particular attention to those passages of Scripture that have been the primary cause of disagreement over this issue. And I also will relate this subject to the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel (ICFG), the denomination of which I am a part.

Foursquare History And Position

My denomination was founded by a woman. During the 1920s into the early 1940s, Aimee Semple McPherson preached to huge crowds across the United States and in Canada. The revivals she led were characterized by salvations, dramatic healings, and the manifestations of the gifts of the Spirit. She ended up founding and pastoring Angel-us Temple, the church she started in Los Angeles, which ministered to well over 10,000 people each week and where she regularly preached 21 times each week. The ministry included a Bible college and one of the earliest Christian radio stations. Sister McPherson (as she was called) was unconventional and very popular. Besides being a woman, sh...

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