This is part eleven in a series on what the Bible says in regards to the ordination of women in the church. Again, instead of rewriting what I believe has already been well laid out, I am sharing Dr. Jim Feeney’s writings on the subject for your edification. You may disagree, and that is your right, but please be able to point to the Bible for your reasons and not the culture.
Argument #11: “Priscilla, the wife of Aquila, seems to have been teaching the Bible to a man.”
A Biblical Response: The text alluded to in this argument is Acts 18:26 "[Apollos] began to speak boldly in the synagogue. When Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they invited him to their home and explained to him the way of God more adequately." Several obvious thoughts come to mind that do not permit the erroneous conclusion that Priscilla was a teacher of men.
•• This was not a formal teaching situation. It was a situation where the preacher Apollos had been invited to Aquila’s and Priscilla’s home (vs. 26).
•• They “explained to him the way of God more perfectly.” The scenario seems to have been an informal discussion with Apollos in his hosts’ home.
•• There is no indication that Priscilla took the lead in any of this. In fact, her name occurs seven times in the NIV New Testament, never by herself, but in all seven cases in association with her husband.
Argument #12: “If we women don’t have some leadership roles in the church, how will our voices be heard when we have important input?”
A Biblical Response: I don’t personally know of any church leaders consistently closing their ears to women’s input. And this input can be had without ordaining the women and/or putting them into leadership and pulpit roles to men. I was a local-church pastor for 22 years and a Bible college teacher for twelve years. Throughout that time my wife never functioned as an ordained minister, nor did she ever lead or teach men. However, the input and wisdom that she shared with me profoundly influenced the churches in which I have ministered. For example:
•• On a number of occasions my wife offered suggestions to me which I then brought to my fellow elders. Some of those suggestions were well received by the church’s governing elders and were incorporated appropriately into the church’s life and ministry.
•• Time and again, having heard the Lord’s voice in her own devotional times, my wife has shared biblical insights with me that I have then incorporated into sermons I have preached.