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I'm glad we're having this discussion, brother Jack has a great question, first, we must forget that there are people that the SDA Church hires to lead churches that we have given the title of "pastor ", more than likely they are men with degrees and ordained, forget that for a minute..


The Spiritual Gift of being a pastor, as brother Ian (Elijah) says lies somewhere between prophet and teacher,  does this Spiritual Gift of "Pastor " apply to men and women equally? 


this is what we have been saying: one doesn't need the title of ''pastor" to pastor the flock of God. 


Jason wrote: "this is what we have been saying: one doesn't need the title of ''pastor" to pastor the flock of God"

I get that, but I'm not talking the title of pastor by the means of degrees and ordination by the Church... I'm talking about a pastor by means of the work a person does, in that since have the title of pastor. So whether it's a man or woman, we can look and say they are a pastor for GOD.

 In other words, if a duck didn't have a degree and wasn't ordained, if it walks and quacks like a duck, then it's a duck.  If a woman is doing things that shows that she has the Spiritual Gift of being a pastor, then she is a pastor, without degrees and ordination. Do you agree? 



1 Co 12:11 says “But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.”  After describing a list of some of the Spiritual Gifts.  

It doesn’t say that we get the gift we want.  It doesn’t say what the criteria the Spirit uses to distribute those gifts other than to say that it is as “He wills”.  And EVERY OTHER gift we accept the idea that He May give it to either women or men.  We seem to only have a problem with the gift of Pastor.  Primarily because we are, in my opinion, too enamored with titles.  We expect from someone we call “Pastor” actions that include administration, intercession, preaching, evangelism, and at other times, parts of several other gifts.  That is silly.  Because later in the chapter, Paul describes the Body in terms of parts, and clearly states that nobody has everything, that the Body is made up of cooperating parts.  

The guy we call “Pastor” may not even have the Gift of “Pastor”, which is about equipping other people for service.  Very often he has Teaching, or Administration.  If he is a good preacher, he may have Evangelism.  

There is a difference between our saying that “a woman cannot be a Pastor (meaning an ordained person being paid for doing the job of being in charge of a church), and saying “a woman cannot have the Spiritual Gift of Pastor”.  The first statement is an organizational decision, informed by what we think the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy says on the subject.  The second statement is not up to us, because the Spirit gives that gift to WHOEVER He wills.  I believe that a woman can have the Spiritual Gift of Pastor completely and fully.  And that is a totally separate issue from whether or not they are ordained, because, in fact, in the Church, I think MOST of the people with the gift of Pastor are not ordained.  And yet they are busily equipping people for ministry.  And the church leaders are not particularly effective in seeking those who have this particular Gift, as evidenced by how few ordained leaders in the church are actually recipients of the actual ”Pastor” Spiritual Gift.


Brother Jack, Well said, I agree with you. I believe if these clear lines can be agreed on then I think we can solve this issue in the Church.

I know those for WO and woman who wants to be an ordained pastor are going to chase the degrees and title of ordained pastor, but if she's a pastor by the Spiritual Gift of GOD, I would think that is sufficient enough. It's by their fruits we will know them and what position GOD has put them in, whether pastor, physician, singer, musician, etc.. 

 Thank you! Blessings! 

Reasoning wrote: The Spiritual Gift of being a pastor, as brother Ian (Elijah) says lies somewhere between prophet and teacher,  does this Spiritual Gift of "Pastor " apply to men and women equally? 

Well, Reasoning this is where the problem is as far as I know the Bible does not say directly if a woman can be a Pastor we can only go on what has gone before where we see no woman was ever ordained to be priest or apostle. And if ever a woman was qualified to be an apostle it would have been Mary of Magdala. She understood Jesus mission while none of the Apostles did.  

Also concerning the vote for WO 2015 EGW wrote this 

I have been shown that no man’s judgment should be surrendered to the judgment of any one man. But when the judgment of the General Conference, which is the highest authority that God has upon the earth, is exercised, private independence and private judgment must not be maintained, but be surrendered.-Testimonies, Vol. 3, p. 492. (First published in 1875.) {GRC 52.1}

Never should the mind of one man or the minds of a few men be regarded as sufficient in wisdom and power to control the work and to say what plans shall be followed. But when, in a General Conference, the judgment of the brethren assembled from all parts of the field is exercised, private independence and private judgment must not be stubbornly maintained, but surrendered. Never should a laborer regard as a virtue the persistent maintenance of his position of independence, contrary to the decision of the general body. {GRC 52.3}

At times, when a small group of men entrusted with the general management of the work have, in the name of the General Conference, sought to carry out unwise plans and to restrict God’s work, I have said that I could no longer regard the voice of the General Conference, represented by these few men, as the voice of God. But this is not saying that the decisions of a General Conference composed of an assembly of duly appointed, representative men from all parts of the field should not be respected. God has ordained that the representatives of His church from all parts of the earth, when assembled in a General Conference, shall have authority. The error that some are in danger of committing is in giving to the mind and judgment of one man, or of a small group of men, the full measure of authority and influence that God has vested in His church in the judgment and voice of the General Conference assembled to plan for the prosperity and advancement of His work. {GRC 52.4}


We really don't know how Mary Magdalene functioned in the church, and so we don't know whether or not she received the spiritual gift of "pastor".  We do know that she wasn't counted, traditionally, in the list of "Apostles" (which happens to be a separate spiritual gift).  That doesn't mean that she was or wasn't busily equipping members for ministry (which would be happening if she received the Spiritual Gift of "pastor", and was functioning with it).  Being the leader of a church body in the world of that time, especially with the early church so closely associated with Judaism and the majority of its early advocates and leaders being Jews themselves, would have been difficult for a woman.  We don't know what happened later, as more Gentiles came in.  We do know that there were some women who were singled out for their ministry, some of whom seemed to have hosted the church in their own homes.  I don't think that we need to argue from silence in the Word. 

By the way, I am not sure that the text that is referenced that seems to be ranking the Spiritual Gifts was actually doing that.  But that is up to interpretation. 

I am not too sure where you are going with this Jack? How do you see the Christian church today different from the early church of the Apostles? Do you think that 2000 years makes a difference to what women can do in a Church? 

1Co 12:28  And God set some in the church, firstly, apostles; secondly, prophets; thirdly, teachers, then works of power, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, kinds of languages. MKJV

Now pastor is not on this list but I guess it would lie somewhere between Prophet and teacher 



 re: “Do you think 2000 years makes a difference..”

Well, if there are eternal principles involved, obviously not.  If it involves cultural acceptability and being careful about those so as not to bring disrepute to the church, maybe so.  The Adventist Church of today is different in many ways from the Acts 2 church.  First, that church was less highly structured.  Second, it was a “home church”.  Third, it was led by people who had spent years with Jesus.  Fourth, some doctrines had not been developed as such.  Yes, there were quite a few differences from us.  Are all those differences, differences in eternal principles?

where I am going with this is that in your point on Mary Magdalene, you conflate “Apostle” (which so far as we know, Mary was not) with ‘Pastor”, which is not the same thing, and is a different role and gift.  If you wish to suggest that we should be more like the early church, you would get no argument from me.  Home churches - I am all for.  Fewer titles - very good.  People functioning in their gifts - excellent!  Churches with sprinklings of all kinds of spiritual gifts operating throughout the “laity” - ideal.  But that would also mean that the leadership doesn’t get to be the sole identifier of who has what gift - that would be up to the Spirit (really, that is how it is supposed to be anyway, right?).  And there is not any indication that, in the early church, people with the gift of “pastor” operated in the same way as those people we call “Pastor” operate in the church today.  

The main biblical texts that develop the requirements of leaders are: 1 Timothy 3:1-132 Timothy 2:1-13Titus 1:5-9Acts 6:1-6, and Exodus 18:21-22

I hope you know that the requirements of an ordained minister is taken from the Bible ...

Why do you speak of ordination in this context?  The giving of Spiritual Gifts, of which the gift of “Pastor” is one, is separate from ordination and job title.  


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