Though leaders enthusiastically cite the biblical account of Deborah the Prophetess (Judges 4-5), who was the first and only female judge mentioned in the Bible, many Christian denominations are not yet comfortable with elevating women to the office of the Bishop or even the pastorate. But Bishop Charles H. Ellis III, who presides over Pentecostal Assemblies of the World (PAW), is questioning the fairness of the exclusion of women from such leadership roles, namely, the Bishopric.
According to the Christian Post, Ellis says that PAW will continue its work to give women an equal opportunity to join the ranks of the denomination’s leadership.
Though PAW voted to allow women to become ordained bishops just a few years ago, this has not been wholly embraced by the entire body. Ellis asked, “Will we offer access and opportunities in jest? Or will we actually offer real hope and opportunities of individuals being elevated, especially when they’re putting in the work and they’re being used by God in a mighty way, just as many of the men and the brothers are?”
Those questions remain unanswered and the odds are against women in this context, the open-minded Bishop feels.
But it is not just Pentecostal Assemblies of the World that struggles to engraft women into certain positions of leadership. As recently as 2008, Gospel Today Magazine was pulled off the shelves of more than 100 Lifeway Christian Bookstores across the country, including six in metro Atlanta, because the Southern Baptist Convention does not believe the Bible supports women pastors according to its interpretation of the New Testament.
So is banning women from being pastors and bishops discriminatory or biblical?
Some like to invoke Joel 2:28 as a support for women being allowed to minister and impart what God has said. The scripture reads, “And afterward, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions.”
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article courtesy of EEWMagazine.com