In the January 2014 meeting of the Theology of Ordination Study Commottee (TOSC), several papers were presented. Among these was this short paper prepared by 10 members of the committee. This paper is a concise evaluation of several of the arguments favoring women’s ordination. The ten authors writing this response are Gerhard Pfandl with Daniel Bediako, Steven Bohr, Laurel and Gerard Damsteegt, Jerry Moon, Paul Ratsara, Ed Reynolds, Ingo Sorke, and Clinton Wahlen.
Among other things, this paper addresses the following pro-woman’s ordination arguments advanced by those holding that position:
- In Genesis 1 there is full equality in function between man and woman.
- Adam and Eve were priests in the pre-fall Eden sanctuary.
- Male headship did not exist in the Garden; it is a result of the fall and applies only to the marriage relationship and not to the church.
- The qualification lists in 1 Timothy 3 and Titus 1:1-11 are gender neutral.
- Junia in Romans 16 was a female apostle.
- Galatians 3:26-29 applies not only to salvation, but it also abolishes the subordination of “females to males.”
- 1 Timothy 2:12-14 applies only to a specific situation in Ephesus and does not refer to the relationship that should universally exist between men and women.
- The priesthood of all believers permits women to be ordained as elders/ministers.
- Ministry in the New Testament Church was non-hierarchical.
- “Head” in 1 Corinthians 11:2-16 has the meaning of source rather than spiritual authority.