New blog conference on women in eldership

New blog conference on women in eldership

I have been invited by Pastor Dave Woolcott to participate in a new blog conference on women’s eldership in the church put on by the Ryde Presbyterian Church in Ryde, Sidney, Australia.   The blog address for the conference set for September 1 – 15, 2009 is The blog is on line now and active and I invite you to participate by commenting on Dave’s blog.

There is a thought-provoking article on “Should a Pastor Rule Over You?”  It is very appropriate to the issue of women in ministry and what the real issues are.

I think that the blog conference idea is a wonderful way to draw many of us together to talk about this important issue in the church today.  I want to personally thank Pastor Dave for believing that my writing style and my arguments are worthy of being considered in the PCA especially since it is important to show that egalitarians are not automatically liberals.

Regarding the conference Pastor Dave writes:

The thoughts here arise out of a church where we seek to understand and then apply our understanding of what it is to do and be church. As a result we hope to discuss openly and honestly a variety of different topics, and we hope that others in the blogosphere might be challenged by our thoughts and in return challenge us.

Coming up in September (1st-15th) is our first Blog Conference in which we hope to discuss the issue of women eldership in the church. We have invited a number of guest posters to start discussion for us. The aim is to try and discover Biblical truth in a way that builds unity. Gender topics within the church context often result in the straining of relationships, but we feel this is often the result of a lack of understanding. Through generating greater understanding we hope to also generate greater unity. After all, we are all brothers and sisters in Christ!

Also stay tuned as my debate with Mike Seaver will continue on August 17th with the next installment of my questions and Mike’s answers.

6 thoughts on “New blog conference on women in eldership

  1. Hi everyone,
    Just thinking a bit more about 1 Tim 3:11 and how it relates to the chapter as a whole.
    Also about how deacons may relate to overseers. Could “deacon” be a more general term and an “overseer” be one type of deacon?
    So could the chapter read
    1-7 Overseers must be….
    8-10 Likewise, anyone who wants to be a godly servant in any leadership task in the church, not just overseers must be……
    11 Just in case you didn’t think women could be involved in these sort of tasks, they definitely can be, and likewise must be……
    12,13 All servants in the church must be…..
    As an illustration, I believe there have been times in past history when it was deemed inappropriate for women to play sport.
    v1-7 If anyone wants to play tennis, he must be…
    v8-10 Likewise if anyone wants to play any sport, he must be….
    v11 Just in case you thought I wasn’t including women, and that women shouldn’t play sport, they definitely can, and to do so they likewise must be…..
    v12,13 Continuing on, anyone who plays sport must be…..
    Any thoughts? Thanks.

  2. Craig — just loved your last comment. Your explanation is just so reasonable. It’s so plain to see. And I think you’re just the greatest for caring enough about this issue to pursue honest understanding. It’s so touching.

  3. Hi Elastigirl,
    Thanks so much for your enthusiastic and encouraging reply! I feel as though I have gained much more from everyone here than I have given. It is encouraging to hear that some of my ramblings and questioning is also a help to others. 🙂
    I would like to think that my explanation @#1 is a reasonable alternative/possibility for what Paul could be saying. I am glad you can see what I am suggesting. I know there are other ways of reading the passage. I would like to know if any others see any “holes” in it or good things about it before I suggest this with my comp friends. Thanks.

  4. Craig,

    To continue on: I tend to see passages like this one as simply acknowledging the fact that groups of people automatically organize themselves into leaders and followers. This happens when a groups of friends goes out to eat or see a movie, at family reunions, even on Thanksgiving Day — it’s just how human beings are. Paul is simply giving good advice for the successful organizing of people who are about God’s business.

    I think it’s kind of silly to diagram it all out as a specific patterned requirement for how to do church (“let’s see, we have overseers & their requirements, we have deacons & their requirements, and then of course women have their own set of reqirements & Paul lists each group separately so apparently each group is distinct…”). If one takes Paul’s every word as literal & binding on how we do everything, then logically only deacons have to be careful about their alcohol consumption. It’s therefore not so much of a big deal if overseers and presumably women are “given to much wine”.

  5. To continue on even MORE:

    if Paul, in the non-earthly realm of existence where he is now, is somehow aware of how things have been panning out on earth, I’m quite sure he’s rolling his eyes & saying,

    “Guys, guys…. chill out. Why are you so obsessed with me and those letters I wrote? Yeah, some parts were pretty good — like the 1st part of my letter to the people in Ephesus — I think I really hit the nail on the head there. But not everything was really that good — I mean, you can stop hanging on my every word. It’s sweet, but, come on. Listen — I am NOT the star of the show. You want to focus on what really matters? Then read, think, and talk about what Jesus did and said. That’s the heart of the matter right there.”

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