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Re: More Sticky Issues of Women in the Church #19342
Tue Nov 23, 2004 6:29 PM
Tue Nov 23, 2004 6:29 PM

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averagefellar,

I disagree. The bishop, as steward of God, is responsible for everything that is said or sung in his church. Titus 1:7. He leads the congregation in the recitation of the Creeds and the singing of hymns. Women are not teaching, usurping authority, or speaking in the church. They are merely adding their voice to the voice of their bishop.

Re: More Sticky Issues of Women in the Church #19343
Tue Nov 23, 2004 6:39 PM
Tue Nov 23, 2004 6:39 PM

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So where is that passage that says they cannot sing a solo? Equivocating singing to teaching requires women to remain silent even during singing. You cannot have it both ways.


God bless,

william

Last edited by averagefellar; Tue Nov 23, 2004 6:40 PM.
Re: More Sticky Issues of Women in the Church #19344
Tue Nov 23, 2004 8:50 PM
Tue Nov 23, 2004 8:50 PM
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speratus said:

Wes,

The actual author is irrelevant. Whether penned by a woman, a heretic, or a pagan, the pastor is responsible for every word of every song sung by his congregation. If non-biblical songs are used, their sole purpose is to hold "fast the faithful word." Titus 1: 9. Women may not speak independently of the pastor as in a solo but may join in congregational singing lead by the pastor. 1 Tim. 2:11, 12


It appears that you are saying the author is irrelevant and the pastor has the right to approve songs written by women, heretics and pagans. That sounds a bit troubling. Also I'm a little troubled by your statement about non-biblical songs. I'm wondering how "non-biblical" songs hold fast the faithful word. Furthermore the passages you've sighted do not support your conclusion.

Titus 1:9 has nothing at all to do with women singing solos in the church. This passage deals with the topic of qualifications for elders in the church. Singing is not teaching or having a position of authority.

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I Titus 1:5-9

Qualified Elders
5 For this reason I left you in Crete, that you should set in order the things that are lacking, and appoint elders in every city as I commanded you-- 6if a man is blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of dissipation or insubordination. 7For a bishop must be blameless, as a steward of God, not self-willed, not quick-tempered, not given to wine, not violent, not greedy for money, 8but hospitable, a lover of what is good, sober-minded, just, holy, self-controlled, 9holding fast the faithful word as he has been taught, that he may be able, by sound doctrine, both to exhort and convict those who contradict.



Once again in I Timothy 2:11,12 Paul does not forbid all vocal participation by women in the worship service. Rather, Paul enjoins silence of a particular sort - a silence that respects the authoritive teaching and governing role assigned to the teachers of the church.


Wes


When I survey the wondrous cross on which the Prince of Glory died, my richest gain I count but loss and pour contempt on all my pride. - Isaac Watts
Re: More Sticky Issues of Women in the Church [Re: Wes] #19345
Tue Nov 23, 2004 9:42 PM
Tue Nov 23, 2004 9:42 PM

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Wes,

I have read and appreciate the regulatory principle concerning non-biblical singing which many Reformed congregations seem to have abandoned. I would very much like to visit a church that holds to that teaching but there are none in the area.

But, to me, if a pastor can preach a sermon that is not verbatim from the bible, he can also select hymns that he or others have written that are not in the bible. The key is "Do the sermon and hymns hold fast the faithful word?" I believe singing is always teaching and an exercise of authority: "he may be able, by sound doctrine, both to exhort and convince the gainsayers."

Re: More Sticky Issues of Women in the Church #19346
Tue Nov 23, 2004 10:04 PM
Tue Nov 23, 2004 10:04 PM
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speratus said:
I believe singing is always teaching and an exercise of authority:

speratus,

Methinks that THIS is what needs to be challenged and support offered from Scripture to show that this statement is indeed true. I have never heard anyone make this claim. Of course, I don't get out much so there may be many people/churches that hold to this view or a derivative of it. But from what I have always read and heard, singing is mainly a form of praise expressed by believers. It is true, that good hymns contain sound biblical doctrine. But that doesn't necessitate that the singing of songs is "always teaching and an exercise of authority".

Secondly, if it is an "exercise of authority", then when there is congregational singing, what are single women to do? remain silent? Further, if singing, as you have said, is always an exercise of authority, then when the entire congregation sings, to whom is the singing, aka: expression of authority, addressed? According to Paul, if two or three have a message to bring, then each one must keep silent and only one speak, and that in turn so as to maintain proper order in the church.

Can you address my question(s) and concerns, please?

In His Grace,


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Re: More Sticky Issues of Women in the Church [Re: Pilgrim] #19347
Tue Nov 23, 2004 10:54 PM
Tue Nov 23, 2004 10:54 PM

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pilgrim,

The purpose of hymns is to teach and admonish. This includes hymns of praise. Col 3:16. When the flock is assembled for corporate worship, the authority to teach and admonish is given to ministers. 1 Cor. 4:1; Acts 20:28; Heb. 13:17.

As I said, single women may add their voice to the voice of the pastor. But, when single women teach and admonish on their own, they are usurping the authority of men.

Re: More Sticky Issues of Women in the Church #19348
Tue Nov 23, 2004 11:44 PM
Tue Nov 23, 2004 11:44 PM

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Sorry, but proof texting is akin to grasping at straws. None of those passages, NONE, say singing is equal to teaching.


God bless,

william

Re: More Sticky Issues of Women in the Church [Re: Pilgrim] #19349
Wed Nov 24, 2004 12:07 AM
Wed Nov 24, 2004 12:07 AM
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Pilgrim,

I apologize for the confusion. I had actually included the two examples of sharing a testimony in a church service, or sharing some thoughts from a scripture passage, as things I had expected you or others here would consider out of place biblically. Not to say I believe this myself- I'm studying these issues right now myself, and haven't drawn many firm conclusions at all.

The problem is, many strong, conservative, godly men have done their exegesis and studied these passages long and hard, and have come to differing conclusions. For example, men like Ligon Duncan and John Piper, in their work with the CBMW, would subscribe to the following:
Quote
When Paul says in 1 Timothy 2:12, "I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent," we do not understand him to mean an absolute prohibition of all teaching by women. Paul instructs the older women to "teach what is good. Then they can train the younger women" (Titus 2:3-4), and he commends the teaching that Eunice and Lois gave to their son and grandson Timothy (2 Timothy 1:5; 3:14). Proverbs praises the ideal wife because "She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue" (Proverbs 31:26). Paul endorses women prophesying in church (1 Corinthians 11:5) and says that men "learn" by such prophesying (1 Corinthians 14:31) and that the members (presumably men and women) should "teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs" (Colossians 3:16). Then, of course, there is Priscilla at Aquila's side correcting Apollos (Acts 18:26).

It is arbitrary to think that Paul had every form of teaching in mind in 1 Timothy 2:12. Teaching and learning are such broad terms that it is impossible that women not teach men and men not learn from women in some sense. There is a way that nature teaches (1 Corinthians 11:14) and a fig tree teaches (Matthew 24:32) and suffering teaches (Hebrews 5:8) and human behavior teaches (1 Corinthians 4:6; 1 Peter 3:1).

If Paul did not have every conceivable form of teaching and learning in mind, what did he mean? Along with the fact that the setting here is the church assembled for prayer and teaching (1 Timothy 2:8-10; 3:15), the best clue is the coupling of "teaching" with "having authority over men." We would say that the teaching inappropriate for a woman is the teaching of men in settings or ways that dishonor the calling of men to bear the primary responsibility for teaching and leadership. This primary responsibility is to be carried by the pastors or elders. Therefore we think it is God's will that only men bear the responsibility for this office.

You can find more on this here.

But then, for example, reading John MacArthur's notes in his study Bible, you'd get the idea he would disallow any public participation in a church service by a woman. This comes from what seems to be a no-questions-asked interpretations of "silence," per 2 Tim. 2:11-12. And, carried to its logical conclusion, this would bar women from sharing publicly in song, i.e. a solo or whatever (or perhaps this is a non-sequiter on my part; hence this thread). But even MacArthur seems to avoid laying down too many hard and fast rules: http://www.biblebb.com/files/MAC/54-16.HTM or http://www.biblebb.com/files/MAC/sg54-17.htm. (As a side note, if I remember correctly from my two-week trial of the Shepherd's Fellowship, I got the impression that Grace Church has women sing solos or whatever in their services. I could be wrong here.)

So, needless to say, I'm a little confused. Perhaps there's more perspicuity in these issues them I'm seeing. What is your take, and why? You mention leading worship. How would you see this as different from the aforementioned activities of singing, sharing a testimony, etc? I'm curious what you believe. Others, feel free to jump in.

Last edited by Henry; Wed Nov 24, 2004 12:20 AM.
Re: More Sticky Issues of Women in the Church [Re: Henry] #19350
Wed Nov 24, 2004 12:21 AM
Wed Nov 24, 2004 12:21 AM

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Offering a testimony and singing, solo or as a congregation, are participating in worship. Leading, which implies being a leader, is more of a position of authority. That's my understanding.


God bless,

william

Re: More Sticky Issues of Women in the Church [Re: Henry] #19351
Wed Nov 24, 2004 1:25 AM
Wed Nov 24, 2004 1:25 AM
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You mention leading worship. How would you see this as different from the aforementioned activities of singing, sharing a testimony, etc?

I think Ligon Duncan, &co., has a much more amiable interpretation of Paul's teaching to me. I too think the "key" is the context in which we read that passage, i.e., the corporate/public worship of the saints. Thus, the FULL responsibility of worship, teaching, and discipline rests solely upon the ordained men of the church, which offices can only be occupied by men.

Now, I mentioned, "leading in worship" because in many modern churches there is a "minister of worship or music" position created. Because music is to be complimentary to the preaching of the Word, it is essential that the Pastor/Elders be the one(s) who is responsible for ALL aspects of it. Thus, if the Elders decide to delegate some responsibility in the area of singing, the individual appointed must be 1) a man, 2) work in close conjunction with the preaching/teaching Elder(s), and 3) be qualified, e.g., doctrinally/theologically knowledgeable and sound.

What I was opposing was a situation where a woman would come before the congregation and "lead" the congregation in song during formal worship, thus, IMHO, usurping the authority given to those who are ordained to do this. And, I believe that the Elders do not have any authority to delegate their authority to anyone who cannot qualify, i.e., a woman, who the Scripture says must remain "silent" in such circumstances.

I hope this clarifies my position. <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />

In His Grace,

Last edited by Pilgrim; Wed Nov 24, 2004 12:40 PM.

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Re: More Sticky Issues of Women in the Church #19352
Wed Nov 24, 2004 1:36 AM
Wed Nov 24, 2004 1:36 AM
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Quote
speratus said:
The purpose of hymns is to teach and admonish. This includes hymns of praise. Col 3:16. When the flock is assembled for corporate worship, the authority to teach and admonish is given to ministers. 1 Cor. 4:1; Acts 20:28; Heb. 13:17.

Well, I do understand what you are saying. I simply have to disagree due to the fact that I believe a careful exegesis of the Col 3:16 passage as well as Eph 5:19 will not support the idea that Paul is referring to how believers are to conduct themselves in corporate/public worship, but rather he is instructing them as to how they should relate to one another in everyday life.

Therefore, the onus is upon you to present your exegesis of that/those passage(s) to show that the context is that of corporate worship. Will you do that please?

In His Grace,


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Re: More Sticky Issues of Women in the Church [Re: Pilgrim] #19353
Wed Nov 24, 2004 7:59 AM
Wed Nov 24, 2004 7:59 AM
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Pilgrim said:
What I was opposing was a situation where a woman would come before the congregation and "lead" the congregation in song during formal worship, thus, IMHO, usurping the authority given to those who are ordained to do this. And, I believe that the Elders have any authority to delegate their authority to anyone who cannot qualify, i.e., a woman, who the Scripture says must remain "silent" in such circumstances.


Pilgrim,

I'm still a little confused about your position. Are you saying that Elders do or do not have the authority to delegate their authority to someone who cannot qualify? The last sentence implies they do, but the previous sentence implies they don't (if I'm reading it right).

How would you respond to women helping to collect the offering? The church I attend allows that. Collecting the offering doesn't seem to be a role which has any sort of authority (I'm not sure on this point actually), but before I came to Japan, I never attended a church where that was allowed.

John

Re: More Sticky Issues of Women in the Church [Re: Pilgrim] #19354
Wed Nov 24, 2004 8:09 AM
Wed Nov 24, 2004 8:09 AM

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pilgrim,

I agree that Col 3:16 and Eph. 5:19 have applicability beyond corporate worship just as 1 Tim. 2:12 does. In all three cases, a discussion of authority in the order of creation follows the text.

The onus is on those who believe that women teaching and admonishing in the church (singing a solo) does not usurp the authority of men.

Re: More Sticky Issues of Women in the Church #19355
Wed Nov 24, 2004 8:28 AM
Wed Nov 24, 2004 8:28 AM

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No, the onus is upon you to show how those passages mean singing. You can't.


God bless,

william

Re: More Sticky Issues of Women in the Church #19356
Wed Nov 24, 2004 9:31 AM
Wed Nov 24, 2004 9:31 AM
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Henry Offline OP
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William,

Allow me to play "devil's advocate" here for a second. Let's take hymns for an example. Is not the inherently didactic nature of hymns one of the reasons they are loved (at least by those with a concern for true biblical worship in the church)? If so, then why is singing one, in a church service, not considered instuction?


(Latin phrase goes here.)
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