John MacArthur clarifies views on Beth Moore, women preachers

“I do not like to give short answers. I don’t like to get put in a position to do that, because I feel like that just escalates confusion, so I want to take the opportunity to address the issue of women preachers this morning and to give you a more thorough answer from the Word of God on this very, very important subject.” - Christian Post

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TylerR's picture

Editor

The article paints such a dark picture of JMac's comments that I'll listen to the sermon for myself before commenting further on what (or, perhaps, might NOT) be JMac's views. However, one issue is interesting - must the Bible's male headship structure for the family be exported to a secular culture? That is, are we really "in trouble" if women are in management in business or politics, at any level? Or, are these Biblical commands more about the family and the church? 

At my agency, I report directly to a female Deputy Commissioner, and the agency's Chief Deputy Commissioner is also a female. They're both highly competent and formidable individuals. Within the next few weeks, I will be meeting with the local counsel for a national company which my unit is investigating. She is female. She is known to be a worthy adversary and I expect we will have great fun discussing her client's alleged sins! Is God's created order somehow upended because He gifted all these women with great minds, and has providentially placed them into careers where they can use them - even though they don't appear to believe in Him for salvation? I am skeptical about that!

Tyler is a pastor in Olympia, WA and an Investigations Manager with a Washington State agency. He's the author of the book What's It Mean to Be a Baptist?

Bert Perry's picture

If people are in trouble if women are in positions of authority, Lydia, Deborah, and a few others come to mind from the Bible.  It strikes me that if the quotes are representative of the sermon, MacArthur seems to be giving a bit of short shrift to the Titus 2 prescription for older women to teach the younger ones.  

I guess we can legitimately question how broad this permission might be, but it strikes me at the same time that I would have trouble telling a woman that she can't teach, say, female prisoners, and I'd have to agree with women who would tell me that there are simply times when a woman can get through to a woman in a way that a man can not.

Edit:  One thing MacArthur gets right is the hazards of a glib answer to a complicated question.  Hopefully when the furor over his previous statements (and I'm guessing these ones, too) subsides, he'll consider his tactics and what forii he's willing to participate in.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Don Johnson's picture

TylerR wrote:

At my agency, I report directly to a female Deputy Commissioner, and the agency's Chief Deputy Commissioner is also a female. They're both highly competent and formidable individuals. Within the next few weeks, I will be meeting with the local counsel for a national company which my unit is investigating. She is female. She is known to be a worthy adversary and I expect we will have great fun discussing her client's alleged sins! Is God's created order somehow upended because He gifted all these women with great minds, and has providentially placed them into careers where they can use them - even though they don't appear to believe in Him for salvation? I am skeptical about that!

I haven't yet read the article, but thought I'd chime in on your question here. "Is God's created order somehow upended...?"

On balance, I'd say yes, as we survey the Scriptures. God's created order and subsequent Biblical applications post Fall indicate that the state of affairs in our culture doesn't reflect God's intentions. The world we live in is fallen. Every relationship struggles with reflecting the image of God as originally created/intended and as twisted by the fall.

As far as the Christian mandate, however, the places where we are called to return to creation order are the home and the church. We aren't responsible for the world, we just have to live in the world as best we can.

There's a lot more reasoning behind that, but that's a short answer. I would recommend the study of CBMW resources here. They aren't infallible, but they have done a lot of thinking on this subject.

Maranatha!
Don Johnson
Jer 33.3

TylerR's picture

Editor

Listened to the sermon. Standard and non-controversial conservative, complementarian viewpoint. JMac sounded indignant and angry. It would have been a better sermon if he were not angry.

Tyler is a pastor in Olympia, WA and an Investigations Manager with a Washington State agency. He's the author of the book What's It Mean to Be a Baptist?