Archive for November, 2011

WOMEN & CHURCH LEADERSHIP

Posted: November 2, 2011 in Uncategorized

This is a topic of debate from days of old till now and most times people prefer to ignore it but i feel i have an individual responsibility to respond to it according to what the bible says. There are various views concerning this and women who feel they are called in the leadership capacity most of the times find that they struggle to accept the truth or worse still don’t even know the truth. SO i will use the bible as my basis and where am wrong i stand to be corrected, biblically so.

Lets begin with 1 Timothy 3.

This chapter talks about the requirements of the elders and deacons. God did not leave us without a definite church structure. The new testament church was led by the elders and deacons and as we read through the bible we find that that is the recommended system of leadership, yes, i know its not what we are used to.

SO here are the requirements of church elders and deacons as required by GOd:

1. HE must be above reproach

2.Husband of but one wife

3.Temperate and self controlled

4.Respectable, hospitable, able to teach and not given to drunkenness

5. HE must not be violent, quarrelsome nor a lover of money

6. HE must manage his family well and see that his children obey him with proper respect.

7. HE must not be a recent convert

8. HE must be of good reputation

9. HE must keep hold of the deep truths of the faith.

10.HE must first be tested before being approved

Do our current leaders meet these requirements and are they males? Maybe, you may argue that those were days of old and the term ‘He’ was unisex but God in his wisdom made sure he had that covered because if you continue in 1 Timothy 3:11 it says,

‘IN the same way, their wives are to be women worthy of respect, not malicious talkers but temperate and trustworthy in everything.’

Therefore, we see that the position of leadership was meant for the man. SO the woman might ask, what am i to do then? Titus 2:3-5 shows us just what:

‘Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderous or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind and to be subject to their husbands so that no one will malign the word of GOD.’

Therefore, as women, we see that we have been given a duty towards other women and not being an authority over men.

1 Timothy 2:11-13 says: ‘a woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man, she must be silent. For Adam was formed first then Eve.

You might argue that that was then and the Jewish customs were biased against women and those were just Paul’s opinions. But aren’t we told that all scripture is God breathed and fully inspired by God. SO if i take your train of thought and agree that it was Paul’s opinion still he was being inspired by God and as such its still God’s command. The bible also tells us God is the same yesterday, today and forever his word never changes.

And finally, Paul, in 1 Corinthians 14:26-37 HE is talking about orderly worship. I will quote from verse 33- 37 which says:

‘AS IN ALL THE CONGREGATION OF THE SAINTS(meaning the church in its entirety, the past, present and future), women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak but must be in submission as the law says. If they want to inquire about something, they should ask their husbands at home for it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church. Did the word of God originate with you? OR are you the only people it has reached? IF anybody thinks he is a prophet or spiritually gifted, let him acknowledge that what i am writing to you is the Lord’s command. IF he ignores this, he himself will be ignored.’

And that, people is the word of God. IF really the word of God is your final authority and you take it to be all sufficient you will accept it as the Lord’s command and if its hard for you ask him to help you accept and understand it if not, your are just fighting against God himself.

This is not to say that women cannot hold ministries but it has to be strictly women’s ministry you should not be exercising continuous authority over men. Men can also once in awhile listen to a woman minister but don’t let her be your shepherd. As Pastor John Piper said, when a woman begins continually overtime to assume an authoritative teaching role in a man’s life, the manhood of man and the womanhood of a woman is highly compromised.

So as i conclude, all church leadership should be by men who are all equals not one being superior than the others but all doing the work of equipping the saints. GRace and peace be to you all.

With love.

I have observed with great sadness, among the Christian circles (especially in social media and other forms of broadcast media), that Christian liberty or freedom has been grossly misinterpreted and misapplied. Nobody, I included, seems to care about the weaker brother anymore. Nobody seems to have the time to slow down and wait for those who are slow in understanding. We now regard weaker brothers as stumbling blocks, forgetting that it is the stronger brother who is referred to as the stumbling block by God (Romans 14:13). We now regard the weaker brother as a nuisance that should be ignored in our attempts to flex our spiritual muscles and exercise our freedoms. The weaker brother is treated like the slow student in classroom who is slowing everyone down and should be ignored for class to continue.

This I have observed both in my own interactions with those I would consider weaker brothers, along with those I would consider stronger brothers.

First of all, let me explain what I mean by a weaker or a stronger brother. A stronger brother, according to Romans 14, is (allegorically) the person who understands that it is inconsequential whether you go to church on Sunday or Saturday. A weaker brother in this case is one who thinks that people should only go to Church on Sunday (or only on Saturday) and that anyone going to church on any other day is blaspheming against God. I hope you get the drift. The difference between a stronger and a weaker brother in this note is a LIBERTY one, not a TRUTH vs HERESY one.

I have interacted with several stronger brothers and disagreed with them on various issues. For instance, a stronger brother might think that it is ok to play secular music in church. He believes that all music, just like food, belongs to God. But I, as the weaker brother, am not comfortable with this. I still think that some music is a form of sacrifice to the devil. I still think that playing that music (even after refining the lyrics) in church is still blasphemous and offensive to God. I believe that doing such a thing is a sin and offering a sacrifice to the devil. So, how is the stronger brother supposed to address me? The Bible provides a rather straight-forward answer:

“If your brother or sister is distressed because of what you eat, you are no longer acting in love. Do not by your eating destroy someone for whom Christ died.” Romans 14:15

The Bible clearly states that the stronger brother should stop doing what he is doing because it is distressing his weaker brother. God gives priority to the weaker brother, not because the weaker brother is right, but because he is weak, and God wants to strengthen his faith rather than shatter the little faith he has. But this isn’t always what happens in the church today. This isn’t what happened to me. The stronger brother in this case told me that I should “stop listening to the music” if I know it will stumble me. That’s not right. The Bible says the opposite! You stop playing the music because it will stumble me! If a weaker brother believes that listening to secular music is a sin, you, the stronger brother should stop listening to secular music for his sake.

“No one should seek their own good, but the good of others.” (1 Cor 10:24)

Apart from the aforementioned example, I have also interacted with brothers that I may consider weaker than me. One example is the fact that this weaker brother believes that it is not OK to have cross-gendered mentor-ships. i.e. A man cannot be a woman’s mentor or “Spiritual father” and vice versa, and yet the two are not married. However, I believe that this is possible, and I have even gone ahead and tried to convince this weaker brother why I believe that cross-gendered mentor-ships are possible. I even give examples from my own life and experiences whereby such mentor-ships have been successful. But the weaker brother does not understand. He is not convinced. He still believes that mentor-ship or “Spiritual Fatherhood” should be restricted to same-gender relationships. I view this weak brother as weak because of his conservative nature. He does not understand the liberty I have in choosing to have cross-gendered mentor-ship. So I dismiss him as foolish and carry on with my cross-gendered mentor-ship agendas. I tell him that he needs to read the Bible and understand that there is nowhere the Bible explicitly condemns this.

But this is wrong. I am creating a stumbling block for my brother. He now thinks and believes that in exercising my liberty (due to some higher knowledge that he doesn’t have), I am sinning before God. He thinks that I am no longer acting in love or as a Christian because I am doing something that is blasphemous. But I dismiss him as young and foolish. Yet God demands the opposite. He demands that, for the sake of this weaker brother, I should stop having cross-gendered mentor-ships or “spiritual fatherhoods”. So, how am I supposed to address this weaker brother? The Bible provides a rather straight-forward answer:

“If your brother or sister is distressed because of what you eat, you are no longer acting in love. Do not by your eating destroy someone for whom Christ died.” Romans 14:15

The Bible clearly states that the stronger brother should stop doing what he is doing because it is distressing his weaker brother. God gives priority to the weaker brother, not because the weaker brother is right, but because he is weak, and God wants to strengthen his faith rather than shatter the little faith he has. But this isn’t always what happens in the church today. This isn’t what happened to my weaker brother. I told the weaker brother that he should “leave me and my cross-gendered mentor-ships alone” if he knows I am stumbling him. That’s not right. The Bible says the opposite! I should stop my cross-gendered mentor-ships because I know it will stumble him! If a weaker brother believes that cross-gendered mentor-ships are wrong, I, the stronger brother should stop cross-gendered mentor-ships for his sake.

“No one should seek their own good, but the good of others.” (1 Cor 10:24)

Until we realize this, we will always be ineffective and unloving Christians. The issue is not whether playing secular music in church is wrong or right (who knows for sure?). The issue is not whether cross-gendered mentor-ships are right or wrong (who knows for sure?). The issue is that;

“The kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.” (Romans 14:17)

You will realize, after reading this note, that it doesn’t matter what the correct interpretation of the Bible is, regarding the issues of Christian liberty specifically mentioned in this note, what matters is whether or not love takes precedence over this knowledge.

“Knowledge puffs up, but loves builds up.” (1 Corinthians 8:1)

Without love, our PERFECT knowledge and ACCURATE revelations are just Clanging cymbals. MAKARATASI.

The right answer coming from the wrong heart is still a wrong answer.

“Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification.” Romans 14:19

Grace & Peace

Verse 1:

Rain/ the flood/ 8 in the ark/ a remnant chosen by God/ true love/

Surviving in the ark/ but feeling the pain/ of losing family & friends in the rain/ grateful/ but feeling undeserving/ why me God? / I didn’t earn this/ though You call me righteous/ i don’t deserve it/ then he hears the screams of people drowning/ I was a sinner like them/ unclean like them/ & though I repented/ I still did it again/ & right then/ he remembers many things/ that he did to deserve the flood & not the ark/ then Noah weeps/ overwhelmed by Grace/ broken/ he sees God in a new way/ & as the waters rise/ & more people die/ many years later/ we understand grace.

Chorus:

Nothing in my hand I bring/ simply to Thy cross I cling/

Nothing in my hand I bring/ nothing/ nothing/

You loved me when I was incomplete/

Embraced me/ when I didn’t deserve it/

I will never understand/ why me?

Verse 2:

Why me Lord? / I didn’t deserve it/ we were both sinners/ but you let me live/ when I should have died/ Lord You put Your hand on me/ then You showed me grace/ do receive my praise/ coz/ none of us deserve the ark/ we all deserve judgment/ to die in the flood/ yet You see us in our sin/ & You run to us/ with compassion/ You kiss & embrace us/ & like the sinful woman/; I will bow & weep/ pouring the oil of my life/ at Your feet/ give You best of me/ & the rest of me/ loving much/ because I’ve been forgiven much/ from the ark/ to the cross/ the purpose is shown/ a depiction of grace/ & a call to the lost/ the true picture of grace/ God’s riches/ at Christ’s expense.

Chorus:

Nothing in my hand I bring/ simply to Thy cross I cling/

Nothing in my hand I bring/ nothing/ nothing/

You loved me when I was incomplete/

Embraced me/ when I didn’t deserve it/

I will never understand/ why me?

Verse 3:

God loves you/ & He’s calling you/ from the pit of sin/ that you have been living in/ to set your soul free/ to make your eyes see/ that He’s everything your heart has been longing for/ turn your eyes/ look to Him/ He’s the only hope/ give your heart/ give your life/ give your everything/ if you’re looking for the answer/ it’s the cross/ where the blood still flows/ for the lost/ He loves you/ He died for you/ hold onto His grace/ & turn back to Him.

Chorus:

Nothing in my hand I bring/ simply to Thy cross I cling/

Nothing in my hand I bring/ nothing/ nothing/

You loved me when I was incomplete/

Embraced me/ when I didn’t deserve it/

I will never understand/ why me?

Credits:

Written & Rapped By: Victor ‘100%’ Muthoka.

Produced, Recorded, Mixed & Mastered By: Charles ‘Kash’ Ndung’u for Sura Nne Records.

Recorded At: Sura Nne Records.

Chorus Vocals By: Molline (of Mission Driven).

Additional Vocals By: Molline (of Mission Driven), Abijah & Elizabeth ‘GodsChild’ Wanjiru.

Chorus Lyrics Sampled In Part From: The ‘Rock of Ages’ hymn (Augustus M. Toplady, 1740-1778).

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Posted: November 2, 2011 in Uncategorized

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