WOMEN IN MINISTRY
Supernatural manifestations and gifts of the Holy Spirit have played a distinctive role from the origin, development and growth of the Church. From the beginning of creation until now, Spiritual gifting has been evident in the ministries of many outstanding women. Divine enablement has been seen in the spiritual leadership of women in the body of Christ. The true body of Christ-the Church believes that the outpouring of the Spirit is a true fulfillment of scriptural prediction, “Your daughters shall prophecy…and upon your handmaids in those days will I pour out my Spirit” (Joel 2:28, 29).
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God created, invited and commanded Adam and Eve to be God’s image on earth through their life in relationship, their tilling and planting, their fruitful and faithful caring for one another and their children, their delight in the birds of the air, their protection of the beasts of the fields, their careful use of the following waters, and their obedient consumption of the abundant fruits of God’s earth.
Human beings, male and female, were created by God for a life of service in “unity, solidarity, mutuality, and equality”. But they thought equality with God a thing to be grasped, and in grasping, lost sight of the equality and unity in which they were created to serve. In their isolation from God and one another, their differences as male and female were on longer perceived to be complementary, together reflecting the richness of the One who made them. Instead, they became opposite whose cooperative service for God in the world would be undermined by their opposition and separation.
As the author of creation, God authorized human beings, created in God’s image, to exercise a derived authority in the universe which is God’s domain. The authority which Adam and Eve received was authority to serve in God’s domain-they were given
Paradigm of God’s liberating activity in the world. Pharaoh let the daughter of Israel live because he believed they were powerless, a non-threat to his own power. What Pharaoh didn’t realize is that in God’s scheme, both women and men can be agents of liberation. Remember Mariam, she was a prophet and one of the triumvirates of leaders God sent to Israel during the Exodus period (Exodus 15:20).
The case of widow of Zarephath to offer lodging and food to the prophet Elijah (1 Kings 17:7-16) was God using and showing that the role women are as important in ministry as that of men. Her ministry of hospitality came at a critical time Elijah, and this poor widow placed herself and her child at risk by offering her only food to the prophet. Through her acts of service to Elijah, the widow of Zarephath advanced God’s work in the world and brought about manifestation of God’s purpose and plans for the nation of Israel and mankind in general. Lets us not forget Huldah, (2 Kings 22; 2 Chron. 34) a prophetess and spoke person for God who revealed the divine will concerning Israel.
Deborah was both a prophet and judge in Israel, dispensing God’s justice in the hill country of Ephraim. She also directed Barak in a battle against the Canaanites. All of these daughters of Israel were called by God to serve in surprising ways, in roles which were usually filled by men
When Christ was here on earth in person, He came as God though born of a woman to show to all that women are no lesser being than their male counterpart. In Jesus, God’s intent for the human race was reasserted and finally sealed. Jesus came to serve and to call women and men to God’s service.
At a time when the...