Southern Baptists and their Gender Double-Standard

Now that Southern Baptist leaders are embracing the idea of a woman leading this nation, will they rethink their rejection … Continued

Now that Southern Baptist leaders are embracing the idea of a woman leading this nation, will they rethink their rejection of the idea of a woman leading their congregations?

Probably not.

In an online interview with Christianity Today’s Sarah Pulliam, the SBC’s Richard Land — who said he is “ecstatic” about the selection of Sarah Palin as Republican candidate for vice president — threw holy water on any notion that a woman he considers qualified to lead the free world can lead him in prayer and worship.

“The only restrictions we find in Scripture are, that for whatever reason women are not to be in charge of a marriage and women are not to be in charge of a church,” explained Land, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission. “That has nothing to do with governor, or senator or the House of Representatives, or president, or vice president.”

It has a lot to do with the men who took control of the Southern Baptist Convention in the 1980s. Previous Southern Baptist faith statements set no gender limits on the office of pastor. In fact, it wasn’t until 2000 that the Southern Baptist Convention voted to amend its Baptist Faith & Message to include this line: “While both men and women are gifted for service in the church, the office of pastor is limited to men as qualified by Scripture.”

“The Bible is clear in presenting the office of pastor as restricted to men. There is no Biblical precedent for a woman in the pastorate, and the Bible teaches that women should not teach in authority over men,” Dr. Paige Patterson, a former SBC and seminary president, explained in 2000.

Of course, there are countless Christians (men and women) who believe these biblical ‘restrictions’ have been misinterpreted, and are no more applicable than biblical ‘restrictions’ on eating pork, selling your daughter into slavery or resisting evil.

The SBC’s current gender restriction was based on short verses from I Corinthians and Timothy, including this line in I Cor. 14:34: “The women should keep silence in the churches.”

In his analysis of the 2000 Baptist F&M, former Baptist seminary president Dr. Russell Dilday said this and other verses are open to interpretation: “The word ‘silence’ used here means ‘be silent in this one instance.’ In verse 30, the same word is used for men who are to keep silent when another is speaking. Some conservative believe the passage means wives are not to correct their husbands publicly in church. This is Paul’s way of preserving the marriage relationship.”

The new Baptist F&M has plenty to say about marriage, too. Another year 2000 amendment: “A wife is to submit herself graciously to the servant leadership of her husband even as the church willingly submits to the headship of Christ. She, being in the image of God as is her husband and thus equal to him, has the God-given responsibility to respect her husband and to serve as his helper in managing the household and nurturing the next generation.”

What’s a governor and married mother of five to do?

It always has amused me that there seems to be only one fundamental on which the male leaders of conservative Roman Catholic, evangelical and pentecostal Protestant, Mormon, Orthodox Jewish and Muslim denominations all agree: A woman cannot lead their congregations or denominations.

Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, yes. The Right Rev. Margaret Thatcher, no. President Mary Robinson, yes. Rev. Mary Robinson, no. Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, yes. Imam Benazir Bhutto, no. Prime Minister Prime Minister Golda Meir, yes. Rabbi Golda Meir, no. President or Vice President Sarah Palin, yes. Pastor Sarah Palin, never.

How do these guys keep a straight face? How do they explain this to their American daughters: “Honey, in America you can grow up to be anything you want, except the pastor of our church.”

After Palin’s selection, it will be interesting to see how they explain this double-standard to American voters.

About

  • northzax

    wait, if a woman can’t be in charge of a marriage and has to be obediant to her husband, how can she be a political leader? Who is she listening to, the people who elected her, or the man she is married to? are we really considering Todd Palin for VP?

  • george thomas

    it must not be the correct agenda for the liberals to roll out the seperation of church and state—

  • vp

    this is why I think so little of Richard Land and his co-horts.

  • Tonio

    These leaders base their political stances solely on what they believe to be the wishes of their god. They claim that their beliefs don’t allow them to treat public policy as separate from personal faith. Yet their support of Palin shows that they are perfectly capable of that compartmentalization. The “straight face” paragraph in this article is excellent.

  • Wolfstan

    Some of the best pastors I’ve known are women. I regret that the Southern Baptists have denied themselves the opportunity to experience this. I hope that someday they will reconsider.

  • Tigere

    Apparently the liberals commenting here don’t understand the distinction between spiritual and temporal authority, between church and civil government, between the home and the state. If these spheres are distinct, then it makes perfect sense to say that a woman can be a President (or Vice President, or corporate CEO, etc., etc.) but not a husband or a pastor.I thought liberals believed in the “separation of church and state.” Now in response to Sarah Palin they are, in effect, arguing for fusion instead of separation.

  • VICTORIA

    TIGRE- As in all the congregations of the saints, 34women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the Law says. 35If they want to inquire about something, THEY SHOULD ASK HEIR HUSBANDS AT HOME; for it is DISGRACEFUL for a woman to speak in the church. 11A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. she must be silent. 13For Adam was formed first, then Eve. 14And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner. 15But women[a] will be saved[b] through childbearing—if they continue in faith, love and holiness with propriety. Where is the distinction there? How can a woman be VP if she cannot have any authority over man- cannot teach man- and has to ask her husband at home any question?

  • Draesop

    President Carter tried his best with them. That organization (Southern Baptists) also remains a bastion of racism.

  • linda Cannon

    Actually the commandment was given to ADAM by God, and then Eve was created. When she was deceived, he was standing right next to her, and it was Adam who disobeyed God and sinned, not Eve. Adam, therefore, is the Father of all of us, and so we all have the Sin nature.

  • Mariano Patalinjug

    Yonkers, New YorkIt is a generally accepted proposition that it is the victors who write history.There is no quarrel about the Bible having been written by men, at a time when generally women were assigned the status of household slaves or cattle.No wonder that the Bible contains provisions which are in reality susceptible to more than one interpretation, but which macho men misinterpret anyway as prohibiting women from leading their husbands in marriage and from acting as pastors in churches.Those biblical provisions, as interpreted by macho men, are anachronistic in the 21st century, a time when women are considered the equal of men in secular affairs.It is time that these should be reinterpreted to allow women to be absolutely and completely the equal of men–whether in marriage, or in churches.Mariano Patalinjug

  • ReluctantCalvinist

    Like it or not, some day you will have to face up to the question: “What if there really is a God and he gave us a set of inspired writings which contain immutable truth?”God giving the office of “Pastor” to (selected) Men is no more insulting than him giving “Mother” to Women. As a man I do not feel demeaned by not being a pastor or a mother.If you believe that God is insufficiently powerful to express himself in text you need some prayer.

  • Jim Roberts, Jr.

    Certainly not. Read 1 Corinthians 11 a few times. Women cannot and should not be leaders, spiritual or political. It’s unbiblical. Any church with lady “pastors” is not a church of God. God gave men and women separate roles; it’s man(kind) that is trying to muddy them into one thing. This is one of the goals of feminism.Looks like the Republican party is going the way of the DemocRAT party and abandoning God for the world.I’m disgusted but hardly surprised at John McCain for this. John McCain has shown contempt for God’s people in the past, but this is inexcusable. I’ll have to write in my Fred Thompson/Duncan Hunter ticket this election.

  • erika van heusen

    Certainly NOT. But that is good for the human race because it will finally bring upon the total destruction of the repugnant American Taliban structure, the Evangelical Christian churches, total elimination that is so much needed if the human being wants to have any possibility to progress.

  • Tonio

    “Apparently the liberals commenting here don’t understand the distinction between spiritual and temporal authority, between church and civil government, between the home and the state.”It’s the fundamentalists who don’t understand the distinction, when they seek to use scripture as the basis for secular law. The mission statement of Regent University explicitly advocates theocracy. And Mike Huckabee’s “God’s standards” comment was theocratic.”If these spheres are distinct, then it makes perfect sense to say that a woman can be a President (or Vice President, or corporate CEO, etc., etc.) but not a husband or a pastor.”The larger point isn’t about spheres. The point is that it’s wrong to place such limits in people in any sphere simply because of gender. The SBC’s position is indefensible and immoral.

  • sofo

    This is good. Not only have they nominated a hypocrite to be VP, her very existence on the ticket will force them to face their own hypocrisy in these matters.Have you seen the republican talking heads on the tv shows these days? They’re dancing as fast as they can, it’s a joy to watch them suffer over this.Though I certainly don’t want her to be elected, it would nevertheless be a joy watching the evangelicals try to slime dance their way out of this one.It’s still funny to see them quoting their bible in these threads, like it means something to them.

  • cbonnin

    There is no such thing as Jew and Greek, slave and freeman, male and female; for you are all one person in Christ Jesus. Galatians 3.28 (REB)

  • VICTORIA

    Fabrisse- I shortened it- you know what you wrote- At that time, widows were kicked out of their lifelong homes. It really happened.

  • Aaron

    “There are “countless Christians” who believe that “resisting evil” is not a valid restriction on contemporary Christians?Can you name one?”Yeah, all the war hawks including a considerable portion of the so-called conservative electorate, many of whom like to talk about how they’re supposedly followers of Jesus, but when the choice comes, decides that rather than to be “as wise as serpents but as harmless as doves”, rather than to return good for evil as Jesus taught in his central message to “resist not evil” and love others, impatiently drove the nation into war, quagmire, torture, and a chokehold of massive debt for future generations of Americans. All in a quixotic campaign to rid the world of “evil-doers”, as if guns and bombers could accomplish that.

  • Alex

    fr Jim Roberts jr:>…Women cannot and should not be leaders, spiritual or political. It’s unbiblical. Any church with lady “pastors” is not a church of God. …No, it is NOT “unbiblical”. Think for a minute on world history, there were women prophetesses, such as Deborah, Rebecca, Esther, and countless others.Also, your remark about “lady pastors” is demeaning to the United Methodist Church, the Episcopal Church, United Church of Christ, ELCA, and many others. I’m proud to be a member of the United Methodist Church, as it has a rich history of ordaining WOMEN, and it IS a church of God!

  • lombardi

    Are all these people out of their minds? How can a person establish the role of any human being, women for instance, based on senseless statements written thousands of years ago by unknown people, who thought it proper to treat females as if they were animals and had a primitive and tribal moral code. How, in the name of the same god who these people name to justify their bigotry, can anybody debate such meaningless issue, using this kind of argument and still call themselves intelligent? For how long will mankind be a silent victim of a bunch ( not to say a gang) of smart managers of our superstition? One of the writers above goes to the extreme of calling such examples of intolerance THE LAW!!!

  • VICTORIA

    Alex- I don’t question the validity of the strong women of faith in the bible such as Deborah, Esther, and Rebecca- but none of them were prophetesses. The job description is in the title- SS- I am 100% in support of and applaud your calling. Besides reasonings circling around anecdotes- can you provide us with any scripture that state firmly the equality of women? I’m not tryng to embarrass or discredit you- but genuinely curious.

  • Fabrisse

    @ VictoriaI’m aware that there were places in the US where women were not allowed to own property well into the twentieth century.My point was that the early church permitted women to hold ranks below bishop and to provide space for their fellow congregants. In other words, if the Southern Baptist Convention is basing itself on the words of the New Testament, they have a hole in their reasoning.

  • A Real Baptist

    It’s not about the Bible, it’s all about them. Richard Land and those like him are simply trying to compensate for their male insecurities and possibly their sexual orientations.

  • Wick W

    If Palin isnt considered good enough to lead by her own church…why the heck should I even consider her good enough to lead a country?

  • Thomas Baum

    SANCTIFYINGSARAHYou wrote, “I feel called by God to serve as a pastor, proclaim the Word and offer Sacraments, in doing these things I hope you will see and feel the fruits of the spirit through me.”.Good for you.Since you feel called by God, then you must have been. We, as humans, seem all too quickly to try and force God into the box that we wish for Him to fit in.I was taught in second grade that God is Love and that we are all equal in God’s Eyes.When God the Father came into my heart, I stopped believing that God is Love because I then knew that it is a literal statement, now I know it.Isn’t it something that we, as humans, are quick to talk about people, somewhat less quick to talk to people and even less quick to talk with people.Does it seem that there are more and more double monologues going on in this world and less in the way of dialogues?Isn’t it something that God loved and continues to love US so much that He became One of us and died for ALL of us and asked us to follow Him and in the process asked permission of a Lady to become One of us and we seem to get so caught up in bickering like a bunch of childish, spoiled brats that we turn a deaf ear to what He said, “Love one another as I have loved you”.I am thankful that God has a Plan and has had His Plan since before creation and that His Plan will come to Fruition in God’s Time. God’s Plan is for ALL OF HUMANITY to be with Him in His Kingdom, the new heavens and the new earth.We seem to be more interested in telling other people what they can do and what they can’t do rather than actually trying to accept His invitation to: “Come follow Me”.Have you ever heard the question, “When the son of man comes, will he find Faith?”Maybe, he’ll find spirituality or religion or a bunch of rules and regulations but will he find Faith? I think that it is a pretty good question considering what some people seem to think “Christianity” is all about.Just a few comments to think about and please hang in there, He hung in there for us, ALL OF US.Take care, be ready.Sincerely, Thomas Paul Moses Baum.

  • VICTORIA

    Fabrisse- thanks for responding- Not ‘place’ ALL places ALL over- “My point was that the early church permitted women to hold ranks below bishop and to provide space for their fellow congregants” Culiminating in 1900 years later, where NO owmen could own ANY property in America? Nobody was a bishop at that time- they didn’t show up for 300 some years. ANON- I see you’ve backtracked on your contention- Denorah was a judge- there is no “position” of prophetess. THe Queen of Sheba also was an advisor to a king- but also- not a prophetess.

  • T Boyer

    Let alone pastoring, in the typical Evangelical church, women can’t even lead a Sunday School class if men are present — the rationale being something like God’s word channels through men into women but not the other way around. Women are allowed to transmit God’s word to children, fortunately, which gets the Evangelical men out of diaper-changing nursery duty.Taken to its logical extension, there is a contradiction here. Many Evangelicals, just like fundamentalist Muslims, ultimately wish to overturn the First Amendment and make Christianity/Islam a compulsory state religion — in fact Sarah Palin is pretty close to this view.That would make the President a spiritual as well as secular leader. So ultimately as the church and state are merged, I suspect the Baptists’ ban on women pastors would have to be extended to political office. All this is based on incredibly flimsy theology. It amounts to job security for sanctimonious male bigots, and why educated women in Evangelical and Catholic congregations put up with it is a mystery to me.

  • Haven

    All I know is that Jesus NEVER put women down or treated them as second class. Paul did. He was human and not divine. I follow Jesus, not Paul. I was raised a Southern Baptist and there are many things I like about that church. But when they started in with Paul’s misogynist mantra, I left.BTW I consider myself a conservative Christian & I have no desire to see a “national religion.” I also don’t think you’ll find a more vehement feminist — but that doesn’t mean I support abortion, which I consider to be nothing less than murder.

  • Anonymous

    > ReluctantCalvinist wrote:Mr. R.C., you have to pass through three degrees of belief, each of them more tenuous than the one before, to reach the conclusions that Evangelicals reach. 1) God made the Bible. 2) God dictated the Bible to scribes, so every word is literally what God meant. 3) The words themselves are complex, so understanding the literal meaning requires your neighborhood expert (male) Evangelical pastor to tell you the meaning of this literal truth and steer you away from the literally true passages that aren’t quite literally true.I began to have difficulty with #3 when I sat through a Sunday School class where the (male) leader was struggling to explain the not-quite-literal truth of Luke 18:25 (rich man/eye of needle). If you want to see a wealthy suburban Evangelical squirm, ask them about that one. Of course it was literally true, he said, but then he started parsing different meanings of “needle” and “camel” and “rich man” and I could see the whole business was a whole lot more creative than Evangelicals would have you believe.In fact the typical Evangelical congregation today is hardly even Protestant by the enlightenment definition. People don’t really read the Bible for themselves — they are taught what to read and what it means, with miniscule room for independent interpretation and debate. These churches are really quite like the Catholic Church — their theology dominated by all-powerful clergy who explain the “literal” meaning of the Bible to their flock.

  • Confused

    Can someone please tell me how the SBC explains the scripture below that clearly names a woman in a ministerial position:Luke 2:36 God is an advocate of women and men in authority as long as it is not abused!

  • rlong

    If a man changes his gender, can she become a pastor with the SBC?

  • Earl C

    As a long-time Southern Baptist, I am not really surprised at the espoused answer to this article. Other Baptist congregations in the United States do have women pastors. In fact, there are women “miniters” in ministries within the church below that of senior pastor. In due time, Southern Baptists may adjust to the realities of the scriptures.The almost fundamentalist element of Southern Baptists has really put a strain on those of us waiting for a swing in the pendulum.

  • RALPH

    When the stories, which later became the bible, were written, women were not allowed to learn to read or write. Men wrote these stories and even thought that God surely must be male. The women were not allowed to disobey their husbands and certainly had no voice in matters of what became religion. Men have run all religions and are not about to turn over any authority, in any religion, to women. It is strange that God aways talked to one man, never a group, never to a woman, and that man was always by himself, with nobody to verify the conversation. God did not create man in his (?) image….it appears that man created God in man’s image! O’well, some progress has been made. Women finally got the right to vote, ‘way back in 1915. If the world lasts, we might even expect a female Pope in a thousand years or so.

  • Susie

    In the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament), a prophet is technically anyone to whom a god speaks. Deborah is usually called a judge, but Judg 4:4 states: “At that time Deborah wife of Lappidoth, a prophetess, was judge in Israel.” Similarly, when Josiah is confronted with the scroll of the law that was found in the Temple renovations (scholars suspect it was written during those Temple restorations), he consulted Huldah, a prophetess (2 Kings 22:8-20).Granted, Christians believe that the New Testament superseded the Old, and therefore Pseudo-Paul’s anti-women rhetoric is more authoritative for them. None of this is to say that Sarah Palin is a good choice for VP, but at least if you’re going to use biblical arguments, please get them right!

  • Susie

    Ralph, have you got any citations on that? Women were not formally educated in schools, but Roman women often learned to read at home if the families were wealthy. And some of the Roman religious cults, such as those of Cybele and Anahita, were dominated by women. There’s a lot of scholarship on women’s religions in ancient Israel, and there’s also some inscriptional evidence for women having been leaders in Roman era synagogues. Yes, the Bible does seem to have been written by and for men, but this level of male domination does not apply to all religions and all times

  • Rise Up Women of America

    It is time for all women to rise up and address the gender bias, sexism, and discrimmination in America. They need to take this message to their family, their employer, their community, their church, and their media.Vote against tyranny, domination, and degradation – make a vote that counts for all women no matter what their party or their background or their beliefs – vote for Sarah Palin in 08!

  • shirley

    this just proves to me that the republicans chose palin, for purely political reason and not because they thought she was qualified. religious fanatic have ruined this country . since there are so many religionthe world over how can anyone say that theirs is the only right one. I hope that left wing wormen aren’t hoodwinked and bamboozled into voting for her as a vote against obama for not selecting hillary. these are the same people who would have been villifiying hillary if she were the vp choice. we are the laughing stock of the civilized world for allowing religion to intrude into our politics. these nuts will outlaw abortion for any reason. why is it right for them to push their way of thinking down our throats. dems believe in live and let live. republicans are pure evil incarnate. they have ruined this country. they sit around idolizing once of the worst presidents in history for poor and black folks reagan. he was as bad an actor as he was president.

  • Saddened

    I am really saddened that so many of these comments are so conflicted about a woman as VP vs. a woman as a pastor.It seems there’s a whole mess of confusion over separation of church and state and whether the Word of God is really the inerrant Word of God. The point of God’s word, is that He sent his Son, Jesus to save us all. If we truly believe that, then we can get past the petty titles, positions, etc. and realize that Satan is having a field day watching us all so called “christians” argue over something he knows is true. But we’ve rendered ourselves ineffective b/c we’re bickering amongst ourselves.We must pray for our country and our leaders and do what’s right or we will all be in a heap of trouble. If you think we have problems now… just watch our country if we fall any further from God.

  • Andrea

    If God said it, we as believers have to know that God knows best. He created marriage, worship and government and I think He knows more than we do about it and how the ideal model works. He created us, He knows us and we need so stop second guessing God’s word.

  • Anonymous

    Judges 4:14 “God is an advocate of women and men in authority as long as it is not abused!” Isn’t abuse of power the charge that Palin is under investigation for right now?

  • SARAH PALIN FOR POPE!

    People of the United States of America! It is time to show unity. All, Republicans, Democrats, Independents, Right of Life nuts, Anarchists, united behind Sarah Palin and demand that is she is immediately elected Pope (following the immediate resignation of the current half-Pope).

  • VICTORIA

    Suzie- You make some interesting connections, but it still doesn’t answer where in the old and new testaments there are any scripture that relegates equality to women. Recorded anecdotal incidences point to the rarity of women having any position- not the normalcy of it.

  • I ALSO GREW UP A BAPTIST

    I also grew up a Baptist but it was in Amsterdam, in Holland. And I managed to own at one time some 37 stalls in the Red Light District!

  • Joe

    Is there any better proof that scripture was written by men than the prohibition against women? The Bible was inspired by God, but written by men. Holy men, yes, but sinful as are all men and women.No Christian takes the Bible literally, even though they may profess to. They pick and choose verses to reinforce their own beliefs.For example, Jesus said more about wealth and greed than anything, but Americans in general ignore that it is easier for a camel to fit through the eye of heaven than for a rich person to enter heaven. Another example is how scripture was used to justify slavery. The Methodist church was torn in half during the civil war, with the northern faction claiming that their interpretation of scripture showed that no human being should own another, while the southern faction stood on literality and the words of Paul. The Bible is not God. It is not the literal inerrant word of God (to make it so is idolatry). It is a sacred book inspired by God that can prayerfully be used to discern the right way to live. The Word became Flesh, and Jesus is alive today, not crammed into a book. God is too big to fit into a book.

  • spiderman2

    “Honey, in America you can grow up to be anything you want, except the pastor of our church.”RIGHT. Just look at how churches turn into when they allow women to be pastors. They become churches fighting for abortion and gay marriage rights.It’s hard to tell why the Bible prohibits women from preaching but you can tell why when you see them handle churches. They easily become the devil’s churches.

  • ZZim

    Umm, don’t we have separation of church and state? Why yes, yes we do! Therefore, there is no possible linkage between a woman’s role in the church and a woman’s role in government.I think that should put an end to this discussion.

  • speed123

    What don’t you understand, Waters?Christ – the Word made flesh – was incarnated into a MALE.You cannot undo this this fact just like you cannot call your Father “mother.”You desire for equality in all things is a form of pride and arrogance…typical for a leftist.

  • Tonio

    “I think that should put an end to this discussion.”No, because the core issue isn’t about the contrast between the SBC and government. The issue is that mandating roles for people according to gender in ANY realm goes against the principles of human dignity and human freedom.

  • Ross Anderson

    Sarah Palin, as per Bible, people are supposed to adhere to abstinence. And churches of all denominations agree to this teaching from bible. Who would know it better than you yourselves that this bible teaching is too restrictive and kills all the fun.Sarah Palin, can you help a reform so that it will be acceptable to allow a teen/unmarried to bear child, and at the same time continue the hypocrisy to preach abstinence?

  • L.Kurt Engelhart

    “What is it … that attracts such haters of religion?”First, it’s not religion, fundamentally, that some people despise. It is churches. Particularly churches that proselytize in our communities and government. The refusal of churches to evolve with the rest of society, at least democratic ones, should disqualify them from any influential participation. However, they continue to try to dictate their obsolete views to others, and they attempt to monopolize power in order to accomplish this. This makes those of us who would never belong to these churches, or believe what they promote, resent the interference they impose on what otherwise could be a rational and valuable discussion.

  • Kwaayesnama

    In my bible the fifth commandment reads simply and clearly: “THOU SHALT NOT KILL”. What is your view of a nation invading a country under false pretenses and killing and maiming thousands if not millions of people? Is that MURDER?

  • L.Kurt Engelhart

    nerakami: If God were to participate in these discussions, what would His words look like? How would He be recognized by Jews? Christians? Muslims? Hindus? Would we not in fact see Him as just another crazy keyboarder? Be aware that God is here, and he is laughing.

  • Tonio

    “First, it’s not religion, fundamentally, that some people despise. It is churches. Particularly churches that proselytize in our communities and government.”I would go further and say the real issue is absolutism and binarism, whether these involve religious doctrine and belief or secular ideology. There are Christian denominations that ordain women. I notice that Richard Mouw on this site describes himself as a evangelical advocate for the ordination of women.

  • NBY

    When you think of Southern Baptist, Pentecostal (one group of which is Assembly of God, where Sarah Palin grew up), or other of the fundamentalist churches, do the Puritans come to mind? They tried to seize control of their own little fifedoms; and they used the stocks, shunning, and ostracism (even in snow-covered New England winters) quite effectively.

  • speed123

    Leftists like Waters like things centralized and flattened (equalized).No differences, no truth, no tradition, no gender, no beauty, no spontaneity.Big government that enforces a leveling “equality” on all under it’s control is the objective of Democrats (and many Republicans).Thank God for the Catholic Church – a bulwark of truth and beauty and DIFFERENCE in the face of this flat, monolithic culture of death, materialism and false “equality.”

  • speed123

    PS – when all of the population has been flattened and atomized by attacks on “unequal” traditional groups and associations, the people are much easier to control by via centralized, bureaucratic govt…who can possibly resist?Welcome to our Brave New World.

  • Hypocrites

    I sincerely hope that all the religious women in the world revolt, and start their own religion, or just give up on religion. How hypocritical to support a female VP, but state that women are not good enough to lead in prayer. What a bunch of crap. Good thing for men that women are the ones that give birth, otherwise, the human race would have vanished eons ago.To all women – do yourself a favor, leave the church and start a new one.

  • speed123

    There is nothing hypocritical about differences in gender as related to theology.Differentiation does NOT equal discrimination.True religion calls for unity through complementarity as NOT via the false unity of identity (equality).Are all liberals so dense? So blind?

  • beatrix

    Hmm . . . I think an even more riveting question at the moment might be: Will the Democrats let women lead?

  • A. P. Davis

    I have to question your assumption here that the Traditional, Conservative, Evangelical base is supporting the idea of Sarah Palin as keeping with their religious views of the roles of women. Here in the South, its not playing nearly as well as the campaign is bragging it is. There is this thing among “Traditional Southern Evangelical Conservative” women that a woman chooses her “full time career” when she gets married and has children. And, among that crowd, they are having a major problem with Gov. Palin making her “full-time” career as a politician and her “part-time” committment with her “husband and children”. There is a real grumbling in the churches down here about the “role” of the traditional woman vs. Sarah Palin. The main grumblers are the “women” who have been put under that thumb for hundreds of years and have put off having a career of their own based on this “traditional” view. So, we’ll see if the Republican base, the traditional women will show up at the voting booth in the droves that the McCain campaign is presenting to the media or if the campaign is just trying to convince them that they should be. I support Obama and don’t have a problem with either Gov. Palin being on the ticket or with women leading a church. That, it seems to me, is up to those who are the following of the particular groups.

  • Anonymous

    Funny how the liberals are now advocating the keeping of women barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen:”This woman can’t be vice president – look at all of those kids!” “Will she squirt breast milk on visiting dignitaries?”Ha! Talk about hypocrites! (and scared ones, at that)

  • Thomas Baum

    SPEED 123You wrote, “Christ – the Word made flesh – was incarnated into a MALE.”And wasn’t it a woman named Mary, that God asked permission from and Mary, using her free will, said YES.You also wrote, “You cannot undo this this fact just like you cannot call your Father “mother.”In the bible, God refers to Himself as like a mother hen that gathers her young chicks under her wings for protection, does it not?Yes, God-Incarnate is a Male but that does not mean that women are inferior in any way.By the way, God is not a male, a female or an it but is a Being of Pure Love even tho God-Incarnate was a Male.I am a Catholic and I cherish my Catholic Faith and I was taught more about God by the Nuns than I was by the Priests.Just as I was taught in second grade, “We are all equal in God’s Eyes”.God forces Himself on no one and neither should we, it is that simple. Take care, be ready.Sincerely, Thomas Paul Moses Baum.

  • speed123

    “And wasn’t it a woman named Mary, that God asked permission from and Mary, using her free will, said YES.”Thanks for the note, Thomas.No one is taking away the honor of Mary in this revelation; however, Christ was male and our theology is based upon this fact.Like I said, unity through complementarity not through forced identity. We all have a part to play in the whole (exp. when pride does not create stumbling blocks – i.e. we are not all called to the same part)

  • Thomas Baum

    FOOD FOR THOUGHTYou wrote, ” You see Paul points out that man was disobedient, however, Eve was decieved.”That is an interesting statement considering that the word obedient, from what I have heard, comes from the same root as the word listen.It seems that lots of people, men and women both, seem to have a problem in the listening department, does it not?Have you ever noticed that sometimes there seems to be plenty of double monologues going on rather than a dialogue?Did you ever notice that it says Eve was deceived and it seemed to have taken some to deceive her but when she gave it to Adam, seems like he just said sure why not?Did you ever think that maybe satan, who happens to be very intelligent by the way even tho he is a liar and a thief and a loser, sore loser at that, might have figured that it might take more to convince Eve than Adam. I am not saying that this is true or not but what I am saying is that it is something to think about, food for thought you might say.I am thankful that God has a Plan and His Plan will come to Fruition in due time, God’s Time.Take care, be ready.Sincerely, Thomas Paul Moses Baum.

  • zqll

    David Waters writes:”It always has amused me that there seems to be only one fundamental on which the male leaders of conservative Roman Catholic, evangelical and pentecostal Protestant, Mormon, Orthodox Jewish and Muslim denominations all agree: A woman cannot lead their congregations or denominations.”What amuses me is how a clown like Waters can pretend to write in the ON FAITH forum of the WAPO and not understand the workings of other people’s faith and beliefs.Is Water’s that obtuse or is he just really so dismissive of how other people practice their religious faith?

  • Andrew

    Just to correct some of the most obvious the errors in this article:Well that’s enough for now, but I wish the author had maybe talked to a Baptist or read something before stating personal conjecture as fact.

  • Thomas Baum

    SPEED 123You wrote, “We all have a part to play in the whole”, yes, this is true and it is up to God, who He chooses for whatever He chooses them for.If a woman has something to say, then we should not be so arrogant as to say that God would never choose a woman to speak.We can sometimes be so quick to try and put God into the box of our own preconceptions that we can sometimes turn a deaf ear to God.We should let God be God, as God says, “I am the Potter, you are the clay”, we should listen to everyone since God can speak thru whomever He wishes and He does sometimes unbeknownst to the speaker.Take care, Be ready.Sincerely, Thomas Paul Moses Baum.

  • Stantheman

    Spidey! You’ve surpassed yourself! This is a new level of lunacy even for you:”RIGHT. Just look at how churches turn into when they allow women to be pastors. They become churches fighting for abortion and gay marriage rights.It’s hard to tell why the Bible prohibits women from preaching but you can tell why when you see them handle churches. They easily become the devil’s churches.”

  • speed123

    “If a woman has something to say, then we should not be so arrogant as to say that God would never choose a woman to speak.”Are there no female saints or mystics in the history of the Church, Thomas? (Or CEOs of Catholic Charities, for that matter)I think that you are placing the role of God more in “a box” than those that defend orthodoxy…

  • Annoy A Liberal Work Hard Be Happy

    I guess we couldn’t ask the question, “Will Democrats Let Women Lead?”, since we now know that twice they have attacked women candidates. Some change.

  • GoodTimes

    Great human comments in this forum. God hears you even before you enter “Post”… And She is not always pleased, but the exercise of thought in humans must be very pleasing for her to observe.

  • Creighton Burrell

    Every discussion of religion must begin with the irrefutable fact that there is zero plausible evidence for the existence of supernatural beings.

  • spiderman2

    “And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.” (Matthew 24:1)Ain’t that a supernatural prophecy? Name another person in history who’ve said that his words will be preached around the world and it happened?

  • Creighton Burrell

    Every discussion of religion must begin with the irrefutable fact that there is zero plausible evidence for the existence of supernatural beings.

  • Hillman

    Funny how Christianists can overlook Scripture saying women must be subservient, when it suits their purposes, but they dang sure feel compelled to use Scripture to do all they can to make life difficult for gay Americans.Seriously. Would Jesus be out there leading the fight to deny healthcare to ANYONE? Would Jesus be using countless millions of dollars and untold political capital to deny gay people health care and survivorship benefits, instead of using all that to combat AIDS in Africa?

  • Tonio

    Andrew,To be fair, the Christians I’ve encountered who advocate theocratic ideas seem to come from independent fundamentalist churches and not Southern Baptist ones. By “theocratic measures” I mean mandatory prayer in public schools, creationism taught as science in public schools, and Ten Commandments postings and monuments in courthouses. I also mean measures that could be argued on secular grounds, such as bans on abortion or gay marriage, but where the fundamentalist Christians in question present arguments based solely in scripture or doctrine.Now, if Southern Baptists who participate in political discourse present secular arguments against gay marriage and abortion, and if they argue for leaving the public schools alone, then your point about a huge distinction between the church and world would be valid. But if they advocate the measures I outlined above, then I would call your point into question.Having said that, the real issue with the SBC stance on women’s roles in the church is about the principle of individual human rights. When talking about such rights, there is no distinction in principle between the church and the world. Any secular organization that openly proclaimed that only men could be in its leadership roles would be rightly condemned as sexist and misogynistic. There is no reason to excuse this in a religious organization.And using scripture for the basis for the stance is highly questionable at best. Not only does that ignore the fact that Judaism and other Christian denominations do not interpret scripture that way, it also makes huge assumptions about scripture’s authorship. What kind of judgment would one make about the pattern you describe in scripture if one didn’t make those assumptions, or if the text came from another religion?

  • spiderman2

    Atheism is a FOOL’S doctrine. Where in the world can you see a creature who believes he/she is a very complex system and yet also believes that same system just existed by itself? Ain’t that the pinnacle of stupidity?Don’t you realize that even a simple straight line CANNOT be achieved without intelligence? How much more a very complex system. Idiot.Where is the proof of God? Look at yourself and examine if you have a brain. Surely there is a God, unless you guys have no brain to examine.

  • nerakami

    The relationship between man & the Creator is (or supposed to be) such a personal thing. I just wish these people would stop trying to shove their interpretation and nations of God down other people’s throats. Live your life the way you feel is right and just for you… but do NOT try to tell me what my relationship with the Divine ought to look like and ought to be. After all you are not God…Therein lies the problem….

  • snapplecat07

    your really comparing apples to oranges. A women or anyone can lead whatever if people choose to follow. If a women is elected, then she has the position, but if any group chooses not to follow, you cant force them, end of story. What your saying is out of context and a really dishonest analogy.

  • Hal Itozis

    Prejudice wrapped in religious cloth is the most pernicious type of bigotry, as it falsely carries an air of legitimacy. Just as the men-only edict on priesthood post-dated Christ by nearly 2000 years (from the southern baptists), so too did the nonsense about deeming homosexuality a sin (first appearing in the Bible nearly 4 centuries after Christ). This blatant and illogical prejudice is why so many of us have left the traditional church and found less bigoted alternatives. When we are all treated equally both within and outside the church, the world will be a better place.

  • Thomas Baum

    Isn’t it something that God asked permission from a woman to become One of us and we still persist in trying to cram down people’s throats that God thinks more highly of men than women.God is not a male, a female or an it, even tho God-Incarnate was a male but if Mary would not have given her “YES”, then there would have never been God-Incarnate, Jesus.I was taught in second grade that we are all equal in God’s Eyes maybe some of you that think you are superior because of your sex should go back to second grade and also some of you that think you are inferior because of your sex should go back to second grade.If not then maybe you should at least entertain the thought, “that we are all equal in God’s Eyes”.As it says, “God created man [mankind] in His Own Image [LOVE], male and female He created them”, doesn’t sound to me that He thinks one sex is superior, of course not, but they are different, just like every human being is different from every other human being that has been, is or will be.God looks at the person as whomever he or she is, not as we do.Take care, be ready.Sincerely, Thomas Paul Moses Baum.

  • Paul B.

    “Of course, there are countless Christians (men and women) who believe these biblical ‘restrictions’ have been misinterpreted, and are no more applicable than biblical ‘restrictions’ on eating pork, selling your daughter into slavery or resisting evil.”Quite bluntly, this is an amazingly absurd and stupid statement. The author shows no ability to differentiate between a dietary regulation which was specifically negated in the New Testament and something the NT specifically afirms, the resisting of evil. I won’t even bother to get into selling one’s daughter into slavery.I started out enjoying this Faith section of the WP, but lately it is becoming a wearisome addled-brained liberal playground.

  • Anonymous

    Just watched the speech by Palin.

  • MarkF

    “I started out enjoying this Faith section of the WP, but lately it is becoming a wearisome addled-brained liberal playground.”So true, so true…Take a look at most any other web site, even other MSM outlets. What is it about the WaPo that attracts such haters of religion?I get down on my knees every day to give thanks to the Father, Son and Holy Spirit for loving and healing an old sinner like me. You lose nothing but your sin when you know Jesus. True freedom comes in loving God and serving your fellow man.

  • Anonymous

    Sarah Palin has her pants down. Bin Laden and Putin are quivering, you know! shush!What is Robert Mule upto now-a-days?

  • Food for Thought

    As I read these comments, one of the continuing themes is that God made women to be something less than men. I believe it is because of the position/roles that men and women have been given by God. Unfortunatly most people (men and women) equate submission to authority, as having a lower position. However, the scriptures tells us that even Christ was under the “Father’s authority” The question is also asked ‘why’. Well, ask yourself this question first, If God intended for men and women to have the same roles, why did he create them differently? Why didn’t he create both of them from the dust of the earth? I believe Paul addresses this question, when he recounts the fall of man. You see Paul points out that man was disobedient, however, Eve was decieved. Women are still being deceived by Satan into believing that when God inspired Paul to write Ephesians 5 which says Wive ‘submit yourselves to your own husband, that there is something sinister involved. They failed to read Eph 5;23 which reads “Husband love your wives as Christ love the Church”. How did Christ love the Church, He died on the cross for ‘us’ the church. So aught men to love their wives…Die to self. In other words it is a husband’s responsibility to care for his wife’s spiritual, physical and mental growth unto his own death. Paul was addressing a problem in the body of Christ, when he proclaimed a “woman should be silent”. There can be only one Head in the home and that is Christ. Question, If Christ didn’t make women head of their own home, why would he made them head of His house of worship? Caring for it, loving it, is what Christ does for his church ‘who is his bride’. No Christian will argue against being taken care of by Christ (the Husband of the Church). Why then do we argue against His will? Eve displayed a desire to be first and was deceived by Satan, as a result God said her punishment was that “your desire would be for her husband, and he shall rule over you.”Most don’t understand the desire is to be “Head” first (for her husband – in his position) but God said “He shall rule over you”. Here is the punishment for both men and women for because Adam had allowed his wife to fall victim to the serpent, man would be forever questioned in his authority and position over woman. For the women’s part she would constantly strive for her Husband’s position, however He would always rule over her. The consequence of sin…no peace in the home.

  • AS

    Alas, something that religion does not teach is logic.

  • Kate

    It’s interesting…that the more religionists argue for their brand of religion in the public sphere, the more likely I am to question (my and others’) faith itself. Faith, in my limited view, does not require control of the government, or a stamp of approval from the government. But I wonder why so many religious want to control it all? It can’t be done. You cannot change hearts and minds by demanding it. Read the history of the Soviet Union.

  • Vicki

    I grew up Baptist in Louisiana and never thought that there was anything but good about baptists. However, I see so many radical policies and backward thinking. When so many baptist churches decided that they were republican that was wrong. Republicans in the south I have come to learn are very racist and are wrong in so many ways. No church has the right to tell their members how to vote or how to be politically. This is what is wrong in my opinion. Women are not second class people and should not allow anyone to treat them like they are.

  • Thomas Baum

    PAUL COOPERYou mentioned 1 Timothy, isn’t there also something in there about it being God’s Will that ALL BE SAVED.Take care, be ready.Sincerely, Thomas Paul Moses Baum.

  • David

    Why do women even set foot in churches that don’t have any use for them? It’s really too bad that they are so willing to be treated as second-class citizens in their churches when they have so many other choices. As long as they let themselves be treated as such, they have themselves to blame as much as the oppressive, foolish men who run the organizations.

  • Tonio

    “As long as they let themselves be treated as such, they have themselves to blame as much as the oppressive, foolish men who run the organizations.”You have a valid point about adult females. But how about the young girls in the families who belong to such organizations?

  • lepidopteryx

    It’s been my observation that there are only two things a man can do that a woman cannot – produce sperm and urinate standing up – and in a pinch, a woman can manage the latter – perhaps not neatly, but she can get the job done, so to speak. There are only three things a woman can do that a man cannot – ovulate, get pregnant, and lactate.None of those things are necessary skills for leadership, whether of a church or a nation. So, in my never-to-be-confused-with-anything-even-remotely-resembling-humble opinion, women and men are equally capable of leading either congregations or countries.

  • Arminius

    Hi, Lep,Could not have said it better myself. Thanks for the chuckle.Apparently you survived the hurricane very well. Hope you had enough Guinness on hand!

  • Al

    I think reason and faith are completely compatible, or at least should be. And church leadership and political leadership should be open completely to women and men.But I pick versus from scriptures of any faith that make sense and feel intuitively right to me.Other’s don’t operate that way, and that is fine.I would add that all of us who are not drawn to organized religion can have at least a measure of sympathy and respect for the many religious people who sincerely believe they are doing, or trying to do the right thing.I think the key invitation for all of us is to actually live what we profess to believe in, and live it consistently. That is the challenge.We may agree with the principle of “treat others as we wish to be treated”. But then make many exceptions every day.This I think is where we all fall down, and daily retrospection if sincere may help us improve the application of our principles in everyday life.

  • Thomas Baum

    SPEED 123You wrote, “I think that you are placing the role of God more in “a box” than those that defend orthodoxy…”First off, what does “the role of God” mean?Second, it is not about “orthodoxy”, it is about God.Third, I am just a messenger, it is God’s Plan, it should be “What is our role in God’s Plan?”, don’t you think?Take care, be ready.Sincerely, Thomas Paul Moses Baum.

  • A proud supporter of women and family values

    Wow, I can see that there aren’t many original thoughts among the forum “On Faith”. David Waters and Sally Quinn are really digging deep to find out whether there is hypocrisy from those Southern Baptists. Ms. Quinn had a dig about the same F&M the other day. Just keep repeating those talking points.

  • Paul Cooper

    The Southern Baptist Convention doesn’t believe ill of women – they simply believes the Bible. The Bible teaches women are equal to men and can do any roll in the church except senior pastor. That is clearly taught in 1 Timothy. You try to brush it off by using examples of Old Testament laws and a different New Testament passage than the clear one in 1 Timothy. That is poor journalism and bad biblical exposition. You don’t have a problem with Southern Baptists – you have a problem with the Bible. That’s your choice- but don’t misplace your blame. And the Bible no where says a woman can’t be a political leader. What I hope you and others understand is that we just want to obey God on roles in church government. It has nothing to do with having a lower view of women. That is why evangelicals are supporting Palin. And that is why it is shocking to see so many “liberals” tear her down. Makes you wonder if liberals are really pro-women or just pro-power.

  • David

    You are a hypocrite. Do not equate the two. You have a problem with someone who is not from the left or right course and did not attend an ivy league. Therefore does not share the same views as you.The greatest equalizer is nature. I can guarantee you that she can handle a bear, or moose a lot better than you and I can. I bet she is a better articulator of ideas then you and I

  • Mike D.

    Any number of fundamentalist denominations will tell you Baptists are in error. They say the same thing about Methodists (let’s see, any famous Methodists out there?) and, of course, Catholics.That is, unless it’s politically expedient to hold hands with any of these apostasies in public.How do you know a loudly public Christian is lying? You can see his…well, you know the rest.

  • Thomas Baum

    An observation.Some people on some of these posts have said that since Jesus was a male…Correct me if I am wrong, but wasn’t Jesus a human being.Aren’t we all human beings first and foremost and then we start using all of the different categories to say someone is “different” not in the fact that they are unique but that they are “different”.Page One, “Let Us make man [mankind] in Our Image and Likeness and God created man, male and female He created them”. Does it ever occur to some people that cite the bible to exclude others that there is more in the bible than what they cite.Isn’t it something that when Jesus walked this earth in His earthly Life, during His public ministry, it was, according to the bible, the women that financially and otherwise helped Him along, something to think about.Take care, be ready.Sincerely, Thomas Paul Moses Baum.

  • Thomas Baum

    Something else.Jesus not only talked to women, He also listened to them. In other words, He didn’t just talk to women, He talked with them.Take care, be ready.Sincerely, Thomas Paul Moses Baum.

  • Charles Lumpkin

    This is the clearest indication to those of us who are Baptist, but no longer can stand as Southern Baptists, that where power is concerned in the SBC, there is always going to be double standards. Interesting is the fact that Baptists began early having “she preachers.” The founder of one of the earliest branches of baptists, John Smyth, acknowledged in his writings that the position of deacon was open to both men and women. The Baptist denomination that defined Baptist in the South was the Separate Baptists, who had as one of its early founders the preacher, Martha Stearns Marshall. The Southern Baptist Convention is descendant of this denomination.What happened to these stands was not as much theological, as it was political. Beginning in the 1970s. the leaders of the SBC sought increased power and exposure by being Republican spokesmen. They were anti-women in ministry and anti-women in any church position. The Faith and Message statement of 2000 was explained to the Southern Baptist Churches and taught in their seminaries as meaning women could not teach men and boys in Sunday School, speak in business meetings or have any sway over church polity. The SBC leaders figured that the Democratic Party was the only political party that would consider a woman for the Presidency. They saw in the GOP something that was perhaps not really there, a shared anti-woman as leader bias.Now their open party affiliation forces them sully out to support their party’s candidate, even when their current anti-women in general stands are inconsistent with the party politics. Their support seems to be in hopes of maintaining earthly influence, at the cost of their prior stated theological positions.In the position of full disclosure, my wife and I are ordained Baptist ministers. My wife has served as deacon, associate pastor, pastor and seminary professor teaching preaching and worship. It is our experience that God has blessed our work.As must know the English word “hypocrite” comes from the Greek word for actor, a person of two faces – the true face hiding behind a fake or false face. I leave it to the reader to discern who among us the title applies to.

  • Bud

    “Differentiation does NOT equal discrimination.”Hmmm, is this the same as “Separate but Equal?”I thought we handled that in Brown v. Board of Education.

  • Bud

    “What I hope you and others understand is that we just want to obey God on roles in church government.”So to obey God and the Bible should trump all? Should we also stone those to death who are gay or committ adultery? It says that in the bible too.

  • Chaotician

    America is a hopeless case; even if the Luddites pretending to be Christians lose! Never mind that Palin is a female…that’s great, but her messanic complex…that’s a whole different story and apparently one embraced by hordes of Americans! That makes America a lot more like Nazi Germany than the nation our founders envisioned; our government already is a textbook example of Fascism and getting more so every day; our MSM is now essentially owned by corporate bosses and is focused purely on selling the rube American consumer everything from ginzo knives to Presidents…not to mention a war or 2! Our operational tactics (Home and abroad)resemble those of Stalin…and who wants to see what happens when some domestic “event” occurs?? Gulags anyone?? America has a Military force larger than the rest of the world combined…and we are willing to use it for any whim our “choosen” leaders have…McCain and Palin and probably even Obama are enthused about using our toys to destroy Iran, a paper tiger invented by the MSM for its corporate ratings in collusion with our captive “Leaders”…can we expect the next WW to be America against everyone else except our puppet allies, GB and Israel?? Will the smoldering ruins save us from global extinction from our industrial exploitation?

  • dbl06

    Face it. There as many contradictions in the bible as there were in Palin’s VP nomination acceptance speech.

  • Porter

    Tom,

  • Thomas Baum

    PORTERYou wrote, “He is not unisex, as you tried to make Him out to be.”, I did nothing of the kind, what I said was that God does not have a sex, He is a Being of Pure Love.What I wrote was, “God is not a male, a female or an it even tho God-Incarnate was a male, is this not what I wrote? It does not say anything about unisex.In the bible God also refers to Himself as like that of a mother hen but that does not mean that He is a female either does it?GOD IS PURE LOVE, it is that simple.Don’t you think that we should be praying for God’s Will rather than our own, whether you know it or not God has a Plan and His Plan is much better, to put it mildly, than people’s greatest imaginings.In the bible, it is referred to as the Mysterious Plan of God and It will come to Fruition.God is the Father of ALL and God is the Brother of ALL and God is the Knitting Buddy of ALL, as you may believe, God is a Trinity, I have met the Trinity.Take care, be ready.Sincerely, Thomas Paul Moses Baum.

  • Thomas Baum

    PORTERYou stated, “The question that needs to be asked, is society better off since women were given the right to vote, and is the family unit more stable?”.To imply, which this question surely does, that the problems of society are all because at least some people, at least in some ways, seem it appropriate that women should be considered human beings is, to say the least, rather sad.A couple of other questions to ponder:Is society better off since men have been given the right to vote?Is the “free will” that is given to us by God better off since in theory, we have freedom to choose without human coersion, whether it be poltical or religious, in a secular society where we, at least in theory, can officially believe what we actually believe?A statement: God gave “free will” to mankind not just to man.Another statement: God is not a male, a female or an it but is a Being of Pure Love, even tho God-Incarnate was a man.Another statement: Did you ever notice that Jesus treated women as human beings and worthy of not only talking with but listening to, even tho some of His apostles seem to disaprove and the same seem to apply to children, which Jesus made a comment to the effect, “Suffer the little ones to come unto Me for of such is the Kingdom”.We are all created in the Image and Likeness of God, not just the ones that some humans approve of. Page One, even tho some have torn it out, God hasn’t.Take care, be ready. Sincerely, Thomas Paul Moses Baum.

  • Porter

    “This [is] a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work. A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach; Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous; One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?) Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil. Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil. Likewise [must] the deacons [be] grave, not doubletongued, not given to much wine, not greedy of filthy lucre; Holding the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience. And let these also first be proved; then let them use the office of a deacon, being [found] blameless. Even so [must their] wives [be] grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things. Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well. For they that have used the office of a deacon well purchase to themselves a good degree, and great boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus.” 1 Tim 3:1-13

  • Thomas Baum

    PORTERThank you for your comments and I wish you well also. I was told in a dream that I know was from God that only I could say it, so I am trying to do what I have been chosen for and it is up to God to see me thru.Remember Jesus’s baptism by John?As it says; God works in mysterious ways and He chooses Whomever He chooses, sometimes we, as humans, want to put God in a box and if He does something that does not conform to the box that we have constructed for Him, we, sometimes, refuse to even consider that it can be so.However you believe that God is leading you then you should follow, remember Jesus extended to invitation to: “Come follow Me” not His teachings, not His Church, not the Bible. The Bible can help lead people to God but it also seems to lead others, other places, Jesus did say that He would send us the Holy Spirit to guide us into ALL TRUTH and we definitely need the Holy Spirit’s Guidance.Take care, be ready.Sincerely, Thomas Paul Moses Baum.

  • Porter

    Tom,

  • Curiouser and curiouser

    Does anyone else find it striking that so many profess, “Absolute power corrupts absolutely” and then can turn around and categorically state that “Wives must submit to their husbands” without seeing any troubling issues.

  • Jay Pea Dubya

    For forty years the looney left has been telling us that women can do it all, and do it better than men. When a woman who seems to fit that mold happens to be a conservative Republican, she and her supporters are pilloried in every way possible, the facts be damned. This piece is just another example. Southern Baptists, who’s “Convention” only exists 4 days a year, vote on advisory policies for member churches who are free to agree with the majority’s interpretation of scrpiture or not. If there is any hypocicy going on, it’s massive over-arching hypocicy and hate of the left, on full display since Sarah Palin’s nomination.

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Dear Evangelicals, Please Reconsider Your Fight Against Gay Rights

A journalist and longtime observer of American religious culture offers some advice to his evangelical friends.