Wonder never cease in the raucus household of faith. Mark Driscoll’s recent post on mainline denomination
“In summary, here are ten easy steps to destroying a denomination:
Have a low view of Scripture and, consequently, the deity of Jesus.
Deny that we were made male and female by God, equal but with distinct roles in the home and church.
Ordain liberal women in the name of tolerance and diversity.
Have those liberal women help to ordain gay men in the name of greater tolerance and diversity.
Accept the worship of other religions and their gods in the name of still greater tolerance and diversity.
Become so tolerant that you, in effect, become intolerant of people who love Jesus and read their Bible without scoffing and snickering.
End up with only a handful of people who are all the same kind of intolerant liberals in the name of tolerance and diversity.
Watch the Holy Spirit depart from your churches and take people who love Jesus with Him.
Fail to repent but become more committed than ever to your sinful agenda.
See Jesus pull rank, judge you, and send some of your pastors to hell to be tormented by Him forever because He will no longer tolerate your diversity.”
Um, Mark—eeeeeeeeasy, brother. While I sympathize with Mark’s general concern with the slippery slide into heresy and apostasy, I completely disagree with some of his underlying obsessions. Is it just me or do you get the feeling that women are a big lot of the problem for him.
Before I even touch the issue of women (which appears to be a touchy subject for Mark), it is certainly true that certain denominations have indeed given in to the radical feminism that has sought to deny the Fatherhood of God and the Sonship of the Son. In addition, the low view of Scripture (which I am grateful Mark noted first) is a tremendous problem and closely related to what I believe is the biggest problem with some denominations today: they have abandoned the exclusivity of Christ and are shipwrecking the faith of many.
Now back to Mark’s woman thang. I am at least grateful that he used the phrase “liberal women.” Mark, I’m sorry that so many of these women have gotten things wrong and put political over the power of knowing Christ. I am even sorrier that some of these women are pushing other abberant and downright heretical perspectives on the lordship of Christ, the sanctity and holiness of marriage and divine and mysterious splendor that comes when men and women embrace how they were fashioned by the Almighty.
Nevertheless, do I as a woman minister need to repent for what I do? I am committed to the Great Mission, the inspiration of Scripture, the sufficiency of the Christ’s substitionary atonement for humanity’s sin, and the belief that Christ ALONE is the only way to the Father. Are these not enough for some complementarians who parrot the opinions of their spiritual fathers (some of whom I adore) or is my faith in Jesus Christ reduced to a litmus test faith where my opinion on marriage and women in ministry is the baseline by which my relationship with Jesus is judged.
I feel sorry for the whole families that gave their lives to Jesus Christ when I preached (not talked) at a friend’s church last year. I know that there are some people who would honestly attempt to disqualify these people’s salvation simply because God chose (remember, He is sovereign) to send His Word through a woman. How sad. Thank God that Jesus Christ, whose precious blood purchased all His saints, has the final word on who is His and who is not.
And I am grateful to God that He has, for over 2,000 years, “tolerated” the differences on the issue of women in ministry and not cursed leaders—godly, Christ-loving leaders—who happen to differ on this issue. So is God too liberal for some complementarians? I am not trying to be a smart *** on this one but I am asking a question.
For now, as a minister and future pastor, I am committed not to preaching the gospel of women’s right to preach but the glorious gospel of the Cross and the resurrection life available to those who receive Jesus. I am committed to building the kingdom of God by using the gifts He chose for me (I wanted to be an accountant, not a preacher like my pastor father). There is not a man or denomination alive who can remove the hand of God from a man or woman upon which it rests—no matter how much we blogicize about the tenability of such a thing.
Jesus made a profound statement that often gets overlooked in the “how do we bring people to Jesus” ruminitions: “And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to Myself” (John 12:32 NASB). That is exactly what I and others concerned about fulfilling the Great Commission and being the Missional Church are about. That will have to be enough. My prayer is not necessarily that you change your tune about women ministers but that you continue to advance the kingdom of God.
I intend to without apology to anyone. 🙂