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Theological Forum discuss Women leading a devotional time in the Theology forums; Just had a discussion with a co-worker about a proposed devotion time we have at my workplace. In my department there are 4 men and ...

  1. #1
    daveb is offline. Inactive User
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    Women leading a devotional time

    Just had a discussion with a co-worker about a proposed devotion time we have at my workplace. In my department there are 4 men and 2 women. Our supervisor has suggested that we start a weekly devotional where we rotate and take turns sharing something (testimony, scripture, what God has been teaching us, etc). My co-worker isn't comfortable with this idea since she feels that she should not be teaching over men. I don't know if what will happen in the devotion time will be teaching per se, but there is that possibility.

    What do you guys think? Would this "sharing" time be ok?

  2. #2
    daveb is offline. Inactive User
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    Perhaps I'll add a bit more substance to my post so you can see what I'm thinking.

    In particular 1 Tim 2:12 is in mind: "I do not permit a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man; rather, she is to remain quiet."

    I believe the context of this verse to have the Christian community in mind, which fits my situation. I understand [i:86a794701b]didaskein[/i:86a794701b] here to mean teaching Bible doctrine (in the church, schools, etc) and this may include things such as Bible studies. Sharing things like testimonies/what God is doing in my life/etc would not fall under this. I'm not as sure about the "exercise authority over a man" part. This is hard for me to understand in a devotional setting like the one I'm describing. I don't know how they would be exercising authority over men if they were just sharing something, but if they were teaching I would say that they would be.

    Any ideas?

  3. #3
    Scot's Avatar
    Scot is offline. Puritanboard Sophomore
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    I'm not 100% sure on this either. Would this lady be "sharing a testimony, scripture", etc. so that you may learn from it? If so, then she's teaching. I have no problem with a woman leading a "devotion time" if she's witnessing to unbelievers. Since there's christain men present, I'd feel on safer ground if one of them led the devotion.
    Dan
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    FrozenChosen is offline. Inactive User
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    It depends. A senior girl last year [i:320fa70d22]facilitated[/i:320fa70d22] a Bible study, and didn't exactly [i:320fa70d22]lead[/i:320fa70d22] it. I did some thinking about it before I joined, and I didn't really have much of a problem. Unfortunately the Bible Study wasn't very good either.
    Daniel Pope
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    daveb is offline. Inactive User
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    [quote:658edc68a8="Scot"]Would this lady be "sharing a testimony, scripture", etc. so that you may learn from it? If so, then she's teaching.[/quote:658edc68a8]

    Thanks for the response Dan. I think this would happen. That seems to be the goal of the devotional time. The person (man/woman) would lead the devotion and prayer time for that day.

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    VirginiaHuguenot is offline. Puritanboard Librarian
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    David,

    I think your co-worker is wise to be concerned about her role in this devotional group. Although it is a wonderful thing for Christians in the workplace to encourage one another in the faith, I am skeptical of groups that try to organize themselves outside of the oversight of the Church. The reason why Church oversight of organized groups of Christians is important is because it is too easy for such groups to slip into female teaching and heresy. I don't condemn all gatherings of Christians outside of Church, but I would urge caution for those who may find more harm than good from groups outside of Church oversight.
    Andrew

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    andreas is offline. Inactive User
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    In all of these passages, the apostles include no restrictions on women
    Hebrews10:25
    1 Thes.4:18
    Ephe.5:19
    1 Thes.5:11
    Consequently i see nothing wrong in applying these to your meetings in order to build the church.We are to comfort one another,edify one another,be filled with the spirit,and exhort one another.
    andreas.
    andreas; By the grace of God,a Christian .

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    Psalm 23:4

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    daveb is offline. Inactive User
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    [quote:1c97d0fc6e="andreas"]In all of these passages, the apostles include no restrictions on women
    Hebrews10:25
    1 Thes.4:18
    Ephe.5:19
    1 Thes.5:11
    Consequently i see nothing wrong in applying these to your meetings in order to build the church.We are to comfort one another,edify one another,be filled with the spirit,and exhort one another.
    andreas. [/quote:1c97d0fc6e]


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    VirginiaHuguenot is offline. Puritanboard Librarian
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    I have to say that I do not see any relevancy between the verses cited above and the original question or the points that I made earlier. A group of Christians gathering together for teaching and worship outside of the oversight of the Church is not in the purview of the verses cited and therefore the fact that the role of women is not specifically referenced in these particular verses has no bearing on the matter at hand. Hebrews 10:25, in particular, relates to the visible Church, not to some informal workplace gathering of Christians where teaching is conducted outside of the Church. The principle that women should not teach is related to the creation of man and woman and certainly applies to mixed sex gatherings of any kind. The only exception to that rule that I can think of is when a mother teaches her male children spiritual matters (ideally under the oversight of her husband and session). The Bible is very clear on this rule. I do not want to discourage Christians from praying together and encouraging one another in the Lord, but that is completely different from an organized gathering of believers outside of the Church's oversight where women are teaching men about spiritual matters, which has no Scriptural warrant.
    Andrew

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    daveb is offline. Inactive User
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    [quote:3ad24e4bd3="VirginiaHuguenot"]I have to say that I do not see any relevancy between the verses cited above and the original question or the points that I made earlier.[/quote:3ad24e4bd3]

    These verses do not relate to the original question.

    I took andreas' post as meaning that we should follow the biblical roles God ordained when it comes to teaching but we can still all pray for each other and encourage one another as fellow believers.

  11. #11
    VirginiaHuguenot is offline. Puritanboard Librarian
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    [quote:794066b452="andreas"]In all of these passages, the apostles include no restrictions on women
    Hebrews10:25
    1 Thes.4:18
    Ephe.5:19
    1 Thes.5:11
    Consequently i see nothing wrong in applying these to your meetings in order to build the church.We are to comfort one another,edify one another,be filled with the spirit,and exhort one another.
    andreas. [/quote:794066b452]

    Andreas seems to think these verses do apply to your original question. I dispute that. My position remains that this type of organized gathering of Christians apart from the oversight of the Church which includes leadership by women does not have Biblical warrant.
    Andrew

  12. #12
    daveb is offline. Inactive User
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    [quote:c875bbd38b="VirginiaHuguenot"]
    Andreas seems to think these verses do apply to your original question. I dispute that. My position remains that this type of organized gathering of Christians apart from the oversight of the Church which includes leadership by women does not have Biblical warrant.[/quote:c875bbd38b]

    Perhaps I misunderstood him. I read those verses and couldn't figure out any connection to my post so I assumed he was using them in a general sense. If he didn't then I'd disagree as well.

    I had a talk with my supervisor concerning this issue and he decided that the women in the group would not be leading the devotional time. It's moving away from any sort of teaching time to more of a prayer time. The women in the group were happy to hear this.

  13. #13
    VirginiaHuguenot is offline. Puritanboard Librarian
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    Sounds good!
    Andrew

  14. #14
    andreas is offline. Inactive User
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    I felt that the whole idea of coming together was to encourage each other,help each other,edify each other.Nothing about leadership or preaching.Matt.18:20
    The word is clear about the issue of women preachers,and there is no argument against that.What was the point of the devotional group then?
    andreas.
    andreas; By the grace of God,a Christian .

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    Psalm 23:4

  15. #15
    VirginiaHuguenot is offline. Puritanboard Librarian
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    [quote:8b29412940="andreas"]I felt that the whole idea of coming together was to encourage each other,help each other,edify each other.Nothing about leadership or preaching.Matt.18:20
    The word is clear about the issue of women preachers,and there is no argument against that.What was the point of the devotional group then?
    andreas. [/quote:8b29412940]

    Andreas,

    You may have missed the earlier point that was made that in some situations in this particular organized gathering of Christians that women would be teaching men. This was one of my chief objections and one of Dave's chief concerns or interests as well. The verses you cited earlier didn't address that issue at all (one, I believe, relates to Church assemblies, the others relate in general to Christians encouraging or praying for one another). To address the issue of women leadership (note the heading of this thread) one must look at verses that forbid women to teach men, cf. 1 Tim. 2.11-12). If one were to argue that the 1 Timothy reference does not relate to an informal gathering of Christians for worship, then that begs another question which I have also already spoken to (see below). It seems that the group is dealing with that problem by not permitting women to lead and teach after all, which I think is wise.

    However, I still feel that organized regular worship meetings outside of Church have no warrant in Scripture. That is the heart of my concern about what is going on in this instance. Yes, I do believe that Christians can pray for each other and encourage one another outside of formal Church worship services, but to set up an organized regular worship routine outside of Church is to set up something akin to a new Church, but apart from Scriptural principles of Church government, discipline and worship.

    What I think is ideal is to encourage believers to go to Church, and to encourage one another and pray for one another in their lives outside of Church. It is not necessary to set up an organized but unScriptural worship gathering outside of Church.
    Andrew

  16. #16
    daveb is offline. Inactive User
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    [quote:51bb1e29fc="andreas"]I felt that the whole idea of coming together was to encourage each other,help each other,edify each other.Nothing about leadership or preaching.Matt.18:20[/quote:51bb1e29fc]

    The devotional time includes those things but there is also the opportunity to share from the Scriptures, like a mini-Bible study. This is what the women felt uncomfortable with because they thought it would be teaching. That was my concern as well. They would be leading some teaching-time.

    [quote:51bb1e29fc]The word is clear about the issue of women preachers,and there is no argument against that.What was the point of the devotional group then?
    andreas. [/quote:51bb1e29fc]

    What's the point of the devotional group? To get to know each other better, share what God is doing in your life, lead some "study" time and prayer.

  17. #17
    andreas is offline. Inactive User
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    ***What's the point of the devotional group? To get to know each other better, share what God is doing in your life, lead some "study" time and prayer.***

    That is why i did not see anything wrong with it.

    ***Consequently i see nothing wrong in applying these to your meetings in order to build the church.We are to comfort one another,edify one another,be filled with the spirit,and exhort one another.***
    andreas.
    andreas; By the grace of God,a Christian .

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    Psalm 23:4

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    daveb is offline. Inactive User
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    [quote:037fc2bad8="andreas"]
    That is why i did not see anything wrong with it.
    [/quote:037fc2bad8]

    You don't see anything wrong with women leading a short study time from the Bible? Would you think that it's ok in any situation for women to lead Bible studies?

  19. #19
    andreas is offline. Inactive User
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    ***You don't see anything wrong with women leading a short study time from the Bible? Would you think that it's ok in any situation for women to lead Bible studies?***

    I said nothing about leadership,or PREACHING.All i said was,

    ****Consequently i see nothing wrong in applying these to your meetings in order to build the church.We are to comfort one another,edify one another,be filled with the spirit,and exhort one another***
    I still see nothing wrong with that.
    andreas.
    andreas; By the grace of God,a Christian .

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    ean gar kai poreuqw en mesw skias qanatou ou fobhqhsomai kaka oti su met¢ emou ei h rabdos sou kai h bakthria sou autai me parekalesan [/font]
    Psalm 23:4

  20. #20
    daveb is offline. Inactive User
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    Sorry andreas, I misunderstood you. My apologies.

  21. #21
    VirginiaHuguenot is offline. Puritanboard Librarian
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    Dave,

    I'm glad you understand what Andreas is saying because frankly I have no idea.
    Andrew

  22. #22
    andreas is offline. Inactive User
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    ***I'm glad you understand what Andreas is saying because frankly I have no idea.***


    What i am saying is that the unsearchable riches of Christ are to be preached ONLY BY MEN, according to the gift of grace given unto them.I find nothing wrong if a sister in Christ reads to me from the bible if i am unable to do so myself.I find nothing wrong if i am either comforted ,encouraged or exhorted by a sister in Christ,as after all "there is neither Greek nor Jew,there is neither bond nor free,there is neither male nor female:for ye are all one in Christ Jesus".Galatians 3:26-29
    andreas.
    andreas; By the grace of God,a Christian .

    [font=symbol]
    ean gar kai poreuqw en mesw skias qanatou ou fobhqhsomai kaka oti su met¢ emou ei h rabdos sou kai h bakthria sou autai me parekalesan [/font]
    Psalm 23:4

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