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To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them." 
Isaiah 8:20
 
Women’s ordination today is as popular as liberal social issues are in American Christianity and politics. The Seventh-day Adventist Church, particularly some Conferences and Unions in the NAD have been pushing hard for women ordination in disregard to the General Conference's authority and overwhelming vote in the opposite direction. But ultimately what is at stake here are not votes, by-laws, policies or actions by this or other Conference. No one would question that 11 Divisions voted against women ordination and only 2 voted in favor two GCs ago. But that vast majority IS the body of Christ deciding the role of women with "full ecclesiastical authority" (ordination according to the Spirit of Prophecy). However that started by slow escalation of authority from ordination of female elders and  deaconesses, so now leaders use that as justification for equal ordination of women to the pastoral ministry. Little by little we gave away the beauty and simplicity of the Scriptures for complexities and fluidity of policies.
 
What is at stake here is the integrity of the Seventh-day Adventist Church core of solid, Biblical unshakable set of fundamental beliefs. #1: The Holy Scriptures are the infallible revelation of His will. They are the standard of character, the test of experience, the authoritative revealer of doctrines, and the trustworthy record of God's acts in history. However the part wants to command the body and they are doing it because they can…unfortunately. By pushing, twisting and turning every piece of rule to accommodate their intent these leaders of some Conferences and Unions will vote after vote, meeting after meeting continue until their goal is accomplished. How many times do we need to vote "No" to women's ordination? The answer is simple: We'll continue to bring it up for vote until it becomes a "Yes", starting with female elders, deaconesses and then pastors. Brothers and Sisters, this will deeply divide the Church, not bring unity, because the vast majority of the body of Christ (the vast population of 11 Divisions) does not believe is this unbiblical, un-Adventist and unseemly fallacy.

This is a sign of something deeper and more pervasive. At the heart of the issue is that truth is no longer absolute. The Scriptures are no longer the infallible revelation of His will. Not according to some leaders. The discernment between truth and lie is no longer a bright line but a wide gray zone that is getting wider by the day. So wide that people do not see any difference in the sanctity of priesthood well written and articulated in the Bible from another form based on human wicked thinking. Just because someone is or was a great leader, male or female, that does not give him/her the right to officiate in the temple. Remember when that unfortunate man tried to catch the ark falling off the cart? He actually died on the spot. Why? Simple: God told them not to touch the ark. Period! 
Clear truth is no longer acceptable. That is too radical nowadays as the church has "evolved" and the firmness of pillars of principles are no longer that firm. After all, we need to be flexible with our cultural diversity. As if the Bible was written with versions for social adaptation...We now have human rationalization use of scriptures in lieu exegesis. Now society commands and demands truth to adapt and we say: Amen! Even at the cost of changing the real meaning of words such as "discrimination" which somehow became an ugly word although is expressed in the Bible abundantly. There is the saved and the lost. There is sheep and the goat. There is the holy and unholy. There are those that love Him and keep His commandments and those that want to do away with His commandments. There are those that do the will of God and there are those that follow their own will. God throughout the Bible makes clear distinction between those who follow Him and those who follow their own ways.   
 
This push for women ordination is based on popular social forces other than the Bible and Spirit of Prophecy. The misconception is that although man and women are the same before God they have different and distinct roles, therefore they are not equal in the latter sense. We have become a church that embraces social issues ("not mission…") that plagues popular Christianity rather than the solid, strong Biblical truth centered church with a focus on the three angel’s message.  

What has made some leaders in church wonder off our basics? Think about the quality and formation of our leaders these days. Look honestly at our progress in America in terms of baptisms, church growth and expansion that has been nothing short of a disappointing and utterly failure. Mathematically we are not able to even keep our own children in the church, so it is understandable why some are desperate. We all should be! Now, in spite of an anemic baptismal record (Hispanics aside) the two Divisions that are performing terribly compared to the rest of the world (US and Europe) coincidentally are the ones pushing hard for ordination of women. That off course is in disregard for the vast majority of the body that has this terrible habit of insisting on sticking with the Bible and requiring nothing less than a "thou sayest the Lord" or "it is written"! It just happens that these areas are the ones growing by leaps and bounds!  That ought to tell something to Pastors that use little or no Bible and Spirit of Prophecy in their sermons, but rather make Internet their center of thoughtless sermon preparation.  

Having a popular false idea muddying our truth is nothing new. One single popular idea concerning Daniel 8:14 that the earth was the sanctuary was enough for the great deception of the Millerite movement. One little mistake can sour the entire truth. But if the Church leadership can use a set of poorly articulated, social pleaser, unfounded arguments with pseudo theological grounds, then we can prepare ourselves for the wave of arguments that will come against Sanctuary and primarily against the Sabbath, because enemies of truth have been using the same reasoning and rationale for several decades. The fact that there are no women ordained to priesthood in the Bible is the same reason why there is no Sunday as a day of keeping: It is just not there! In the end, if you can ordain a woman without solid Biblical reason to have "full ecclesiastical authority" and in vain worship Him, then you can keep Sunday on the same grounds.

This fear of discrimination based on gender and what others will say about us is an open door for lawlessness. The next question then is: What types of gender are we referring to? In my opinion, this is setting the path to apostasy and heresy. Forget what we think, or what policies say. The social and popular Christianity will dictate some of our leader’s next steps again in a near future - God help us! They already found the way. 
 
 

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@John

I couldn't agree more. That was very well stated. :0)

Ray, what you mean is why don't I agree with you "assessment" of what you think Scripture speaks about equality in ministry.  I respect your "opinions", as the thread states in the title, but that is where it ends.  

We don't agree...and no--you are not a prophet, nor are you God.  You are welcome to continue to rant and rave--gather the emotional sentiment of a few people who may also seek to be what God has not called them to be--a prophet.  Waiting for the good fruit born...

@Sarah

You said "and no--you are not a prophet, nor are you God.  You are welcome to continue to rant and rave--gather the emotional sentiment of a few people who may also seek to be what God has not called them to be--a prophet."

Firstly not one single person here has said, or implied such feelings of them selves what so ever...

Secondly, that was pretty insulting to every single person here, and I think you owe everyone an apology..

Thirdly, if you keep making slanderous remarks about people on this thread, I suspect you may hear from the site administrator again real soon..

@Teresa

"LOL It is funny to hear the same RC/fallen churches chant, "you are rebelling against God" leveled at those who don't fall hook, line and sinker.."

What's funnier is that you have obviously forgotten that you have often said the same thing about other people your self.. Bur when you say it, then it's ok right?

Matthew 7:3 "And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?"

Kristina, when Ray refers to himself as "messenger", he is calling himself a prophet.  =)

While I don't have a problem with modern day prophets, he is not one....or a "messenger". 

As far as an apology, you all owe everyone an apology who does agree with your retoric or the spirit behind it--which the Admin's have repeatedly spoken to about those who believe they champion for the right.  The spirit speaks for itself....and it is neither Godly or Christian.  You were one of those who sat and begged for the site to remain open, pledging the change that would be--and yet it remains.  

You profess to know Jesus, but insist that people must agree with your version of scripture; you do not know how to discuss without targeting or seeking to be hurtful and wonder why your ministries are doing nothing and the Gospel still goes on around you.  You wonder why your churches are dying and why for some of you, you can only "discuss" with people who already agree with your positions.  And this is considered waiting for Jesus to return.  I beg to differ.

I wonder if it would be possible to stop the personal attacks?

Making ad hominem replies is bad enough (and against the rules as was pointed out in this thread very recently) but the rank hypocrisy of some respondents is quite shocking. That haughtiness and pride is quickly turned to venom and hate has been demonstrated very clearly.

Is your disagreement with another member's sincerely held belief a reason not to treat another with Christian courtesy and respect?

Is there no sympathy, as a fellow-sinner, and no tolerance?

If you object to personal attacks against yourself and find them painful and/or insulting do you have an excuse to want to cause others the same feeling?

Personal attacks and the "cheerleading" that goes with them do not just break the rules but they clearly demonstrate that you have no counter-argument other than to attack the person.

It is a sure sign of a lack of Christ-like love and a lack of understanding.

Please stop.

@Sarah

"Kristina, when Ray refers to himself as "messenger", he is calling himself a prophet.  =)

While I don't have a problem with modern day prophets, he is not one....or a "messenger".

We are all messengers, preaching the word of God, regardless of our deference in opinion.. So what is the problem with someone calling them selves a messenger?

"You profess to know Jesus, but insist that people must agree with your version of scripture"

No I just expect a Christian to disagree without being disagreeable.. I never once implied that you are not entitled to your own opinion, and to make such a claim about me, is entirely inaccurate.

"You wonder why your churches are dying and why for some of you, you can only "discuss" with people who already agree with your positions."

If there was any trying in that statement than why am I sitting here talking to you instead of Ray, John B, Alexander..etc..?

Staying in Eden...

"And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.  And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:  But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die. 

And the LORD God said, [It is] not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.  And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought [them] unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that [was] the name thereof. And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him

And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man. 

And Adam said, This [is] now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man." (Gen.2:15-23)

"The angels cautioned Eve not to separate from her husband in her employment, for she might be brought in contact with this fallen foe. If separated from each other they would be in greater danger than if both were together. The angels charged them to closely follow the instructions God had given them in reference to the tree of knowledge, for in perfect obedience they were safe, and this fallen foe could then have no power to deceive them. God would not permit Satan to follow the holy pair with continual temptations. He could have access to them only at the tree of knowledge of good and evil." (The Story of Redemption p.31)

"Eve, unconsciously at first, separated from her husband in her employment. When she became aware of the fact she felt that there might be danger, but again she thought herself secure, even if she did not remain close by the side of her husband. She had wisdom and strength to know if evil came, and to meet it. This the angels had cautioned her not to do." (ibid., p.32)

"Eve was beguiled, flattered, infatuated. Had she met a commanding personage, possessing a form like the angels and resembling them, she would have been upon her guard. But that strange voice should have driven her to her husband's side to inquire of him why another should thus freely address her. But she entered into a controversy with the serpent." (ibid., p.33)

"She then plucked for herself of the fruit and ate, and imagined she felt the quickening power of a new and elevated existence as the result of the exhilarating influence of the forbidden fruit. She was in a strange and unnatural excitement as she sought her husband with her hands filled with the forbidden fruit. She related to him the wise discourse of the serpent and wished to conduct him at once to the tree of knowledge. She told him she had eaten of the fruit, and instead of her feeling any sense of death, she realized a pleasing, exhilarating influence. As soon as Eve had disobeyed she became a powerful medium through which to occasion the fall of her husband. {SR 35.1} 

"I saw a sadness come over the countenance of Adam. He appeared afraid and astonished. A struggle appeared to be going on in his mind. He told Eve he was quite certain that this was the foe that they had been warned against, and if so, that she must die. She assured him she felt no ill effects but rather a very pleasant influence, and entreated him to eat.  
Adam quite well understood that his companion had transgressed the only prohibition laid upon them as a test of their fidelity and love. Eve reasoned that the serpent said they should not surely die, and his words must be true, for she felt no signs of God's displeasure, but a pleasant influence, as she imagined the angels felt.
Adam regretted that Eve had left his side, but now the deed was done. He must be separated from her whose society he had loved so well. How could he have it thus? His love for Eve was strong. And in utter discouragement he resolved to share her fate. He reasoned that Eve was a part of himself, and if she must die, he would die with her, for he could not bear the thought of separation from her. He lacked faith in his merciful and benevolent Creator. He did not think that God, who had formed him out of the dust of the ground into a living, beautiful form, and had created Eve to be his companion, could supply her place." (ibid., p.35/6)

"The sin of this age is disregard of God's express commands. The power of influence in a wrong direction is very great. Eve had all that her wants required. There was nothing lacking to make her happy, but intemperate appetite desired the fruit of the only tree that God had withheld. She had no need of the fruit of the tree of knowledge, but she permitted her appetite and curiosity to control her reason. She was perfectly happy in her Eden home by her husband's side; but, like restless modern Eves, she was flattered that there was a higher sphere than that which God had assigned her. But in attempting to climb higher than her original position, she fell far below it. This will most assuredly be the result with the Eves of the present generation if they neglect to cheerfully take up their daily life duties in accordance with God's plan.  
There is a work for women that is even more important and elevating than the duties of the king upon his throne. They may mold the minds of their children and shape their characters so that they may be useful in this world and that they may become sons and daughters of God. Their time should be considered too valuable to be passed in the ballroom or in needless labor. There is enough necessary and important labor in this world of need and suffering without wasting precious moments for ornamentation or display. Daughters of the heavenly King, members of the royal family, will feel a burden of responsibility to attain to a higher life, that they may be brought into close connection with heaven and work in unison with the Redeemer of the world. Those who are engaged in this work will not be satisfied with the fashions and follies which absorb the mind and affections of women in these last days. If they are indeed the daughters of God they will be partakers of the divine nature. They will be stirred with deepest pity, as was their divine Redeemer, as they see the corrupting influences in society. They will be in sympathy with Christ, and in their sphere, as they have ability and opportunity, will work to save perishing souls as Christ worked in His exalted sphere for the benefit of man.
A neglect on the part of woman to follow God's plan in her creation, an effort to reach for important positions which He has not qualified her to fill, leaves vacant the position that she could fill to acceptance. In getting out of her sphere, she loses true womanly dignity and nobility. When God created Eve, He designed that she should possess neither inferiority nor superiority to the man, but that in all things she should be his equal. The holy pair were to have no interest independent of each other; and yet each had an individuality in thinking and acting. But after Eve's sin, as she was first in the transgression, the Lord told her that Adam should rule over her. She was to be in subjection to her husband, and this was a part of the curse. In many cases the curse has made the lot of woman very grievous and her life a burden. The superiority which God has given man he has abused in many respects by exercising arbitrary power. Infinite wisdom devised the plan of redemption, which places the race on a second probation by giving them another trial." (Testimonies For The Church Vol.3, p.483/4)

Wow.  Thank you for this post.  Ellen White can make so many things plain.

I have a question for those that support women's ordination.  What is Ellen White referring to when she talks about reaching for "important positions which He has not qualified her to fill"?

What other position in Gods plan could this be other than an ordained pastor or elder?

Vincenzo, it's speculation....And there are two things the Christian should never build a doctrine or fixed belief around:

1.  Anything that is not 100% clear in Scripture (including your Hebrew and Greek)

2.  Speculation...which the Bible calls presumption and has much to say about.

Scriptures are available on request.

To answer your EGW question, the could not be otherwise she would not have endorsed the female pastors, evangelists, and elders of her time.  

Ellen White never endorsed the ordination of women Pastors.

Sarah

 

You posted:

"Vincenzo, it's speculation....And there are two things the Christian should never build a doctrine or fixed belief around:

1.  Anything that is not 100% clear in Scripture (including your Hebrew and Greek)

2.  Speculation...which the Bible calls presumption and has much to say about."

In regard to #1.

There is nothing more clear in the entire Bible then that women should not be ordained.  Your continued support of that position is pure speculation and an expression of your opinions, nothing more..  Which is what you wrote  about in #2.

# 2 The idea that women should be ordained is pure speculation, which you labeled as presumption,which is true.

It seems like what you advise, you yourself fall far short of.

 

Maranatha :)
Ray

 

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