I am of the persuasion that there is nothing in scripture that applies to only one situation. I strongly believe that there are principles modeled in the Bible that are relevant to many different parts of our life here on earth.
If men are to love their wives as Christ loved the Church, what does this say about a woman's role within the Church? Are we equal in our roles with men? If a woman has the same spiritual gift as a man, does this mean that they will both perform within the same roles in the Church? If the same-role ideal isn't modeled in marriage, why would it be carried out within the Church?
Now, with all questions asked (maybe), let's look at the role of women in marriage. Even from the very beginning, Eve was created to be Adam's helpmate. Paul instructs that men are the head of the home, as Christ is the head of the Church, and women are commanded to submit to their husbands as the Church does to Christ. While this is not directly addressing the role of women within the Church, I do believe it applies.
Men and Women are created for specific natural roles, regardless of their spiritual gifting. If we are created to be nurturers and helpmates, it is unlikely that we are intended to use our giftings in the same way. This is simple for those who are gifted with Mercy or Serving, but it gets a little harder when you run into a Prophetic female voice, or even an Apostolic one. What then? What does the Apostolic woman do when the issue of submission arises in Church leadership?
I would certainly not suggest that it is impossible for a woman to be gifted in such a way. If that is so, then it would also be impossible for men to be gifted with the less confrontational gifts. We are not gifted based on gender, but I do believe that our gifts work differently according to our gender. I also believe that as women of a prophetic or apostolic gifting, we are called to more than loose submission to a vague male spiritual authority. We are called to be the support system and helpmate for the men in authority over us. We are called to be the mentors of the younger women around us, and we are called to work by the Spirit within our own giftings regardless of the social pressure to do otherwise. Is this a dichotomy?
So... I THOUGHT I had asked all the questions.... :)
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