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The Female Factor
SERIES: “Questions and Answers”
TITLE: The Female Factor
A.) There is an important need in our day and time to discuss the role of women in the church.
1. The denominational world has thrown off the limitation of biblical authority and have gone head-long into error concerning the proper role of women.
2. Thus it is very critical for us to understand what the Bible teaches concerning a woman’s role in the church.
B.) I want to acknowledge at the outset of this study that a woman’s role in the church is significant:
1. Women ministered to the Lord of their substance - Luke 8:3
2. Dorcas - Acts 9:36
3. Aquila and Priscilla - Acts 18:26
4. Phoebe - Romans 16:1-2
C.) If it were not for worthy women, God’s church could not properly function in this generation or any generation.
I. A FAITHFUL WOMAN IS ONE WHO SUBMITS TO THE DIVINE DECREE
A.) Ephesians 5:22-24 "Wives, be in subjection unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, and Christ also is the head of the church, being himself the saviour of the body.But as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives also be to their husbands in everything."
1. By Divine decree, man is to be the “head” of the woman in the church and in the home.
2. This headship rests upon two things:
a.) The original constitution of the sexes as created
b.) The woman’s role in the fall of man
B.) Concerning the original constitution of the sexes, notice what the Bible teaches:
1. 1 Corinthians 11:6-9 For if a woman is not veiled, let her also be shorn: but if it is a shame to a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her be veiled. For a man indeed ought not to have his head veiled, forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man.For the man is not of the woman; but the woman of the man: for neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man:
2. The controversy over head-coverings:
a.). The International Bible Encyclopedia says, “In NT times, however, among both Greeks and Romans, reputable women wore a veil in public and to appear without it was an act of exasperation"
b.) To appear without the veil would bring shame upon the woman’s authority to man.
c.) Paul states the principles of God’s authority structure as applied to the customs of that day.
C.) Concerning the woman’s role in the Fall - Genesis 3:13
1. 2 Corinthians 11:3 But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve in his craftiness, your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity and the purity that is toward Christ.
2. Adam labored under no such deception - 1 Timothy 2:14; Genesis 3:12
3. Accordingly, woman’s subjection was increased after her Fall – Genesis 3:16
D.) These facts do not suggest that women are inferior to men, but it does mean that they are to be submissive in rank to man.
II. A FAITHFUL WOMAN IS ONE WHO OBEYS THE TRUTH CONCERNING HER ROLE IN THE CHURCH
A.) 1 Timothy 2:8-15
1. Many try to limit this context to public worship, but the scope is much broader than that.
2. Certainly the instructions about modesty (v. 9) and childbearing (v. 15) are related to the woman’s perspective on her total responsibility to the Lord.
3. Likewise, the comments about her relationship to male members of the body of Christ apply more than just to the worship assembly.
B.) Man and woman’s relationship in prayer - 1 Timothy 2:8-10
1. “Men” comes from the Greek word that specifically refers to “males” only.
2. Men are to “pray in every place”
3. This priestly function is reserved exclusively for males when they are present with women.
C.) Women are not to be placed in a leadership role over a man - 1 Timothy 2:11-12
1. Definition: “Usurp authority” - “have authority over, to govern one, or to exercise dominion over one”
2. Rather she is to “learn in silence with all subjection … to be in silence.”
a.) The word translated “silence” has reference not so much to one’s speech as to a total manner of life – NOT total silence or they could not sing in worship
b.) It enjoins not the total absence of speech but a quiet life and a peaceful demeanor in which one fulfills his or her proper role.
3. Thus women, by command of God, are not allowed to have a role that puts her authority over man.
D.) Paul shows that this command is not cultural in nature … 1 Timothy 2:13-14
1. This principle applies to all times and places and not just to the time in which it was written
2. Paul wrote, "as in all the churches of the saints," - 1 Corinthians 14:33c.
A.) This in no way degrades the woman any more than Christ is in His subjection to the Father.
B.) Women have an important place in the church, but it must be in subjection to the man.
C.) In this position she will glorify God.