Author Topic: The Ordination of Women  (Read 28717 times)

Harvey_Mozolak

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Re: The Ordination of Women
« Reply #210 on: December 16, 2010, 02:43:33 PM »
Peter, No, (not really knowing most of you personally but assuming the best) I do not picture you thus but Christianity at the average level (and here I do not mean to say that you people or I because we are clergy or more committed lay people are better) is heard differently than it is at a more examined theological level (or something like that).  For example, I would dare say that most Luth clergy (let's leave lay people out and set up a prejudicial dichotomy for the moment) know better than to assert racism as a part of the Christian teaching and lifestyle ... they know how to keep their act clean in this regard (not all of em but most)...  but get into many average parishes and raise some racial issue for discussion and wow you will be taken back by what good, average, every Sunday attending, active members might say about black people, Jews and the enemy de jour, Moslems--  that is certainly not modeled biblically.  I think the same is true when one speaks about obedience, submission and probably sacrifice in marriage.  That is a reality.  Harvey Mozolak

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Harvey, do you really picture those of us putting forward this view (Scott, Will, myself, et al) ordering our wives around all day? Commanding the person to do something against their will is among the last things that a person called to self-sacrifice for that person would ever do. And deliberately going against the husband's will is among the last things a Christian wife would ever do, and even then only in obedience to the higher authority of God.
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mariemeyer

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Re: The Ordination of Women
« Reply #211 on: December 16, 2010, 02:45:23 PM »
Well, Paul is clear there, too: "as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her that he might sanctify her."

If you disapprove of the analogy as you say, your quarrel is not with me.  It is with Paul.


In practical terms help me to understand what Paul means for a husband to "give himself up for her that he might sanctify her."   Within the context of our marriage, I think it would be accurate to say that God worked through Bill and through me as each of us grew in Christian discipleship and holy living.  This happened as a result of what each of us received as the One Body of Christ nurtured in and through Word and Sacrament.

 I understand  "mutual consolution" to apply in marriage just as it does to all Christians within the Church. I understand you to conclude that in the horizontal marriage relationship Paul states that the husband plays a different part in the sanctificatin of his wife than she does in his. Certainly marriage is where"sanctification" and Christian living are most likly to take place or to fumble. Is this the shared responsibility of husband and wife, or is it primarily that of the husband?  

By extension, do men in the church play a different role in the horizontal relationship of men and women than do the women? IOW, what does mutual consolation mean in the church?  I ask this because as the years progressed in our marriage mutually and reciprocity took on a greater meaning.

mariemeyer

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Re: The Ordination of Women
« Reply #212 on: December 16, 2010, 02:56:03 PM »
And Christian bridegrooms have authority over Christian brides with no confusion as to whether bridegrooms, too, are the bride of Christ.

Peter:

I am not trying to be an irritant, but where is this written? What does this mean?  What is the authority that a Christian bridegroom has over a Christian bride? 

The authority as to which house to buy? The authority to forgive? The authority as to when to have sex?  The authority of having the last word in an argument?  I honestly do not know what it meant by saying the Christian husband has authority over the Christian wife.  What about non-Christian marriages? Who has authority there?

Timotheus Verinus

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Re: The Ordination of Women
« Reply #213 on: December 16, 2010, 03:13:13 PM »
...
False dichotomy. ....
Again, the stumbling-block seems to be with sexual distinction. If marriage were presented as an arrangement of sacrifice and submission in which the couple decided for themselves which spouse would fulfill which role, I doubt anyone would see any conflict at all. It is having the role assigned based on gender that grates.

Certainly in today's world we have difficulty in sexual distinction, that is self evident on many levels. But I'm not sure I would be presenting this in a dichotomy form. Maybe this is a bad analogy, but perhaps the point will be taken. My navigator from long ago, did not have 20/20 vision. He wore glasses. It was a part of his identity. He may have wanted (indeed did) to be a pilot, but tangentially more than casually he was brought into the crew as a navigator, not as a man who wore glasses, but as path to his place on the crew. Marriage is established by God as a man and woman that takes the identity he created (not an accident of vision) and makes of it "a crew," something new. 31 “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.”

I would ask us to consider here whether there is a new identity. When a woman becomes a wife, her identity is in the marriage just as the man's is when he becomes a husband. They are part of one flesh. The two become. Now Paul speaks to the wife and then the husband as to this relationship. But to attach a dichotomy back to identity as in my navigator, at least to this text I think, is to reach back "out of the airplane' if you will, to bring something into the identity of the crew, that is at best tangential.

I ask then if the distinction Paul makes is not connected to the couple in the unit of marriage, how they behave vocationally in crew, and it is the crew, the wedded couple, that Paul connects to Christ. "29 After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— 30 for we are members of his body." ... "Wives, ... as you do to the Lord." ... "Husbands, .. just as Christ" Distinctions that connect ought not be made to divide. Sexual distinction connects the two as God intended, and identity is changed.- One flesh.

It is more than this, as to how this happens. In submitting to Christ, the wife finds herself also subject to the arrangement with her husband. In Christ's love the husband loves his own body, which also is his wife. The imperative remains, "be filled." and I would at least consider that is the fuller "Look carefully ... do not be fooled, .. be filled." If we are not careful here we end up imagining the wife "cannot sacrificially love," and the husband cannot "subject himself to the marriage." The body is differentiated to the point of dividing what is made one. Verse 21, submit to one another out of reverence for Christ has meaning. Love one another also has meaning.

Or by rule of faith - Christ loved also by getting on his knees, and washing feet as a servant. (John 13) .. and in connection especially 13:38 ... Peter subjected himself also by loving. (John 21) "I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you." After this he said "Follow me."

I ask whether we cannot distinguish to the point of dividing.

TV
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Harvey_Mozolak

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Re: The Ordination of Women
« Reply #214 on: December 16, 2010, 03:36:56 PM »
Marie, my point precisely... how does all of this work out with some degree of specificity... I can understand someone saying yes, a woman can read the lessons or no they cannot but when you start talking about authority in the marriage without any hints as to what it might mean in the kitchen, bedroom, chapel...  headship as I teach it in premarital counseling also has something to do with which head is the best... when the man is an MD and the woman not medically schooled it seems to me that headship in medical stuff leans more toward him, if the woman is a very pious Christian and the husband is very nominal, seems to me the headship leans toward her in spiritual matters.... Harvey Mozolak


Peter:

I am not trying to be an irritant, but where is this written? What does this mean?  What is the authority that a Christian bridegroom has over a Christian bride? 

The authority as to which house to buy? The authority to forgive? The authority as to when to have sex?  The authority of having the last word in an argument?  I honestly do not know what it meant by saying the Christian husband has authority over the Christian wife.  What about non-Christian marriages? Who has authority there?
Harvey S. Mozolak
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kls

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Re: The Ordination of Women
« Reply #215 on: December 16, 2010, 03:46:29 PM »
Marie, my point precisely... how does all of this work out with some degree of specificity... I can understand someone saying yes, a woman can read the lessons or no they cannot but when you start talking about authority in the marriage without any hints as to what it might mean in the kitchen, bedroom, chapel...  headship as I teach it in premarital counseling also has something to do with which head is the best... when the man is an MD and the woman not medically schooled it seems to me that headship in medical stuff leans more toward him, if the woman is a very pious Christian and the husband is very nominal, seems to me the headship leans toward her in spiritual matters.... Harvey Mozolak


Peter:

I am not trying to be an irritant, but where is this written? What does this mean?  What is the authority that a Christian bridegroom has over a Christian bride?  

The authority as to which house to buy? The authority to forgive? The authority as to when to have sex?  The authority of having the last word in an argument?  I honestly do not know what it meant by saying the Christian husband has authority over the Christian wife.  What about non-Christian marriages? Who has authority there?

Hey, how about we start a new thread on how Biblical submission in marriage plays out in day-to-day living?  To discuss it in the practical terms rather than just theological terms may shed a good deal of light on the gift that God has given us through this practice (and of course it will include the husband's responsibility to love his bride).  I'm willing to bet we'll gain a little better understanding of each other by so doing that discussing these hypotheticals simply do not allow for.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2010, 03:54:57 PM by Kim Schave »

Timotheus Verinus

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Re: The Ordination of Women
« Reply #216 on: December 16, 2010, 03:53:00 PM »

Hey, how about we start a new thread on how Biblical submission in marriage plays out in day-to-day living?  ...

Actually my thoughts were this is another thread, and to refocus on the question of ordination, but folks wanted to use Eph 5, so we've tried to answer. Scott what did you want to bring to the ordination question in Ephesians 5? (notice I didn't try to read any ulterior motive here  ;D )

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John Theiss

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Re: The Ordination of Women
« Reply #217 on: December 16, 2010, 05:23:56 PM »
I will once again invite all participants to read "What Paul Really Said About Women" by John Temple Bristow, Harper Collins, 1988.  While you may disagree with his conclusions he does present arguments based on grammatical, exegetical and historical items which require one to deal with the original text rather then with translations.

ptmccain

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Re: The Ordination of Women
« Reply #218 on: December 16, 2010, 05:28:49 PM »
This would be the book written by a man with no credentials? Advancing a "conspiracy theory" about the entire history of the Church? In only 129 pages?

Ah, no thanks.


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Re: The Ordination of Women
« Reply #219 on: December 17, 2010, 11:08:46 AM »
In practical terms help me to understand what Paul means for a husband to "give himself up for her that he might sanctify her."

It may be as simple as deciding to spend more time with the family and not with his friends, refraining from getting angry in response to his wife's anger or challenging his wife to dig deeper into her understanding of the Christian faith.

I understand  "mutual consolution" to apply in marriage just as it does to all Christians within the Church. I understand you to conclude that in the horizontal marriage relationship Paul states that the husband plays a different part in the sanctificatin of his wife than she does in his. Certainly marriage is where"sanctification" and Christian living are most likly to take place or to fumble. Is this the shared responsibility of husband and wife, or is it primarily that of the husband?  

Paul speaks of dual responsibilities of submission and sacrifice, so it is the responsibility of both, though the part each plays differs.

By extension, do men in the church play a different role in the horizontal relationship of men and women than do the women? IOW, what does mutual consolation mean in the church?  I ask this because as the years progressed in our marriage mutually and reciprocity took on a greater meaning.

Paul here is speaking of marriage, though yes, men and women do relate to each other differently even in church.

Scott6

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Re: The Ordination of Women
« Reply #220 on: December 17, 2010, 11:16:23 AM »

Hey, how about we start a new thread on how Biblical submission in marriage plays out in day-to-day living?  ...

Actually my thoughts were this is another thread, and to refocus on the question of ordination, but folks wanted to use Eph 5, so we've tried to answer. Scott what did you want to bring to the ordination question in Ephesians 5? (notice I didn't try to read any ulterior motive here  ;D )

TV

I brought Eph. 5 up to deal with Marie's initial claim:

Today, I question whether the LCMS misuses Scripture to falsely bind consciences to the idea that unity and order in the Church requires that men and women acknowledge that their God and Father assigns them non-interchangeable headship/subordination positions and functions.  Note, I do not dismiss anything St. Paul writes about Christ as Head of the Church or the husband as head of his wife. I submit what Paul says is about the organic unity of the head and body, not the head as being in authority over the body.

Eph. 5 clearly makes a distinction between men and women in the context of marriage such that their roles are not interchangeable.  Further, while it is based upon an organic unity, it is an ordered unity just like a body is an ordered thing as well.  That is, Paul distinguishes between men and women in Eph. 5 such that what we have is not a bland uniformity but actual diversity.

This is relevant to the discussion of women's ordination because it helps to put claims based solely upon Gal. 3:28 into perspective.  Paul is capable of speaking of absolute equality before God, but he is also capable of speaking of diversity of roles in horizontal relations.

This provides the necessary warrant for claims that Paul does make distinctions between the sexes -- he does so in the home, so there's no a priori reason based on Gal. 3:28 that he might not do so in the church.

mariemeyer

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Re: The Ordination of Women
« Reply #221 on: December 17, 2010, 12:42:26 PM »
Paul is capable of speaking of absolute equality before God, but he is also capable of speaking of diversity of roles in horizontal relations.

This provides the necessary warrant for claims that Paul does make distinctions between the sexes -- he does so in the home, so there's no a priori reason based on Gal. 3:28 that he might not do so in the church.


Scott:  What you have written above is an accurate summary of what the CTCR refers to as the four Scriptural principles upon which the conclusion is based that the critical distinction between the sexes  necessary for a procreative heterosexual marriage is also a spiritual distinction applicable to men and women in the Church.  This spiritual distinction is the basis for different male/female roles in the Church.

I still do not fully understand what God reveals is the basis for a spiritual distinction that leads to different roles in the Church.  There is a missng link there that I honestly do not get.  If Christ, in his person as the Son of God who became incarnate as a human male, exemplifies what sacrifical love and submissive love is all about,  how do sacrifice and submission become male and female functions?  Ephesians 5 refers to the sacrificial love of Christ and that of husband for wife.  In this text the love of a wife is in terms of submission.  Are there no texts where submissive love belongs to all who are recreated in the image of Christ.  Is sacrificial love a male love and not a female love? 





Brian Stoffregen

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Re: The Ordination of Women
« Reply #222 on: December 17, 2010, 12:48:03 PM »
This would be the book written by a man with no credentials? Advancing a "conspiracy theory" about the entire history of the Church? In only 129 pages?

So there's no objective truth that can be found by anyone through the study of the grammar and words and historical items of the original text; that one's "credentials" pre-determine the truth that one finds in the text.
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

swbohler

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Re: The Ordination of Women
« Reply #223 on: December 17, 2010, 01:01:15 PM »
"The catechism answers the question of what motivated Christ by pointing to "His great love for His Father and for me." God is Love and Jesus is God, but His love for His Father took the form of submission and His love for me took the form of sacrifice, both of which meet on the cross. Both are godly, Christ-like forms of love, and we are called to both when we follow Jesus. All of us are called to both in different situations. All of us submit out of reverence for Christ. All of us give ourselves up out of reverence for Christ. There is no controversy merely with that. Christian parents have authority over Christian children with no confusion as to whether the parents, too, are children of God. And Christian bridegrooms have authority over Christian brides with no confusion as to whether bridegrooms, too, are the bride of Christ."


Rev. Speckhard, you are brilliant!  Your ability to cut through the layers and make pithy, understandable points is a great gift. 

Timotheus Verinus

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Re: The Ordination of Women
« Reply #224 on: December 17, 2010, 01:42:08 PM »


I brought Eph. 5 up to deal with Marie's initial claim:

Today, I question whether the LCMS misuses Scripture to falsely bind consciences to the idea that unity and order in the Church requires that men and women acknowledge that their God and Father assigns them non-interchangeable headship/subordination positions and functions.  Note, I do not dismiss anything St. Paul writes about Christ as Head of the Church or the husband as head of his wife. I submit what Paul says is about the organic unity of the head and body, not the head as being in authority over the body.

Eph. 5 clearly makes a distinction between men and women in the context of marriage such that their roles are not interchangeable.  ... it is an ordered unity just like a body is an ordered thing as well.  That is, Paul distinguishes between men and women in Eph. 5 such that what we have is not a bland uniformity but actual diversity.

This is relevant to the discussion of women's ordination because it helps to put claims based solely upon Gal. 3:28 into perspective.  ...This provides the necessary warrant for claims that Paul does make distinctions between the sexes -- he does so in the home, so there's no a priori reason based on Gal. 3:28 that he might not do so in the church.

Thank you.  I'm sure we will look at other scripture, so that gives me some idea as to how you see this. I'll not really argue the conclusions you bring, but will bring some thoughts and questions on those conclusions.

Clearly there is distinction, and diversity in an ontological sense. I know of no confessional Lutheran that does not affirm this. How this is applied takes many different forms throughout scripture. The question I raise is one of accidental or causal. (by accidental I do not reject that God intended the distinction or that it is within the purpose of His will.) How we see "such that their roles" bears some consideration. That is why I say vocation becomes important. (Luther's Table of Duties etc.) I would propose that we are not seeing here, that the accidental being put into vocation, can of necessity, reverse the distinction back into the source identity in different circumstance.

My previous examples are note worthy.
Christ loved also by getting on his knees, and washing feet as a servant. (John 13) .. and in connection especially 13:38 ... Peter subjected himself also by sacrificial loving. (John 21) "I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you." After this he said "Follow me." (in sacrifice?)

It is a case, among other things, of bringing the specific to the general, in a tangential way. There is a path to your logic here. Take the specific in accident to a general, and inserting it back into a different accident. I think we have to look at what we can say from the text with assurance.

1. It is rooted in verse 21, and I would say also in verses 15-18.
2. God created this distinction and diversity to a purpose "... just as Christ does the church, 30because we are members of his body. 31 "Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.  ... I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church. " (male and female).

We end up with two things.
?Interchangeability? The relationship of head and body is focused on and seen in the unity. (verse 21) Christ did not deny His distinction as Master, by going to His knees, to serve. (John 13) Peter did not deny His subjection by asserting his sacrificial love. (John 21 especially verse 19(This he said to show by what kind of death he was to glorify God.) Each of these still showed the relationship of the one body.

The practical expression of these things, can be as diverse as the descriptive we see in these examples. I'm not sure I can reject the command of my Lord, "15For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you." even kneeling before the woman who is accidentally my wife. Nor can I dismiss His appeal to Peter, "... do you love (agapE) me?" as the church subject to her head, as not encouraging my wife to the same sacrificial love, to one who is accidentally her husband. This "mystery" is not lightly dismissed as "roles" that blend in the unity of the body. What are we talking about when we speak of interchanging responses of role? The answer it seems to me, has to be vocationally focused (Christ is still the head, the church still subject) and not causally attached to the description of role.

Secondly, to the issue of God's intent to create them man and woman, we have some scripture in addition to this, and that includes Galations. To this text, there is certainly some indication that the mystery of Christ and the Church is a part of this, and that the unity of one body is a part. "there's no a priori reason .. that he might not do so in the church." does sort of beg the question.  This is what I ask, when I say, "Can we take the specific to the general, and then push that back into a different specific?" What concerns me is that given the vocational anchor, that we do that against a different vocation, ie. not wife but women in the church.

I confess that we only ordain "some" men, to the pastoral office on vocational scripture. (1 Tim Titus etc.) I am not guided directly as to what my relationship with your wife ought to be in either this text, nor in the vocational descriptions in those texts. As a Lutheran, when faced with the question "Is there a reason?" I do not a priori set aside that the tension itself may be the doctrine. (bread and body, saint and sinner etc.) I simply keep reading for the things scripture says plainly.

At least at this point, I do not see in the Ephesians text, clear guidance as to my relationship with your wife or Marie, beyond the texts that do speak of all of us as Christian brothers and sisters in Christ. I wonder about its applicability to those questions on the basis of accidental identity. I have to look elsewhere? I am called clearly to a relationship with your wife. That is the question, not the one I have with my wife. Might I color it with your relationship with her ... maybe, but how is that done, and what of the single mother, estranged from her family, father and brothers in my congregation? Do I assign an Elder and deal through him?

Do these questions make no sense?

TV

« Last Edit: December 17, 2010, 01:52:15 PM by TVerinus »
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