Can Reformed Women be Ordained Deacons? | Show Notes
Are ordained Deaconesses compatible with historic Christian orthodoxy? Complementarians insist not, egalitarians insist, yes! A recently published book, by Medieval Historian and Baptist egalitarian, Beth Allison Barr claims that women were most definitely ordained as deacons and that patriarchalist church leaders today are unjustly barring women from being ordained.
Join me, Kerry Baldwin, with Deaconess Melissa DeGroot, as we dare to think about the ordination of Women Deacons.
|00:00||Can Reformed Women be Ordained Deacons? Introduction|
|02:29||Melissa DeGroot, Deaconess in the LCMS (certified and consecrated)|
|04:15||Common ground and distinctions between a Reformed and Lutheran view of Deaconesses|
|07:05||Definitions: Complementarianism and Egalitarianism|
|08:24||What is ordination? (What does it mean to be consecrated?) What is vocation?|
|12:51||Baptists on ordination – Council of Biblical Manhood and Womanhood, John Piper “New Calvinism,” Al Mohler – no doctrine of ordination|
|17:16||What does a Deaconess do in the LCMS? Myth busting|
|19:30||The history of deaconesses (Sorry, Beth Allison Barr is confused on her history)|
|26:00||If everyone is a minister, why can’t women be pastors?|
|30:03||The language of biblical headship, and male and female relationships|
Ordination – Can Reformed Women be Ordained Deacons?
Lutheran & Presbyterian
Augsburg Confession and Westminster Confession, Compared (Relevant Sections)
VII. Of the Church | XXV. Of the Church
VIII. What the Church is | XXVI. Of the Communion of Saints
XIV. Of Ecclesiastical Order | I. Of Holy Scripture
XV. Of Ecclesiastical Usages | XXX. Of Church Censures
XXI: Worship of the Saints | XXI. Of Religious Worship
Baptist Faith & Practice – On the Church
“The biblical teaching about women in ministry is not about ordination because Southern Baptists do not believe in ordination or a clerical class. There is an argument that says, “A woman can do everything a non-ordained man can do.” The problem with that is that we are Baptists and have no theology of ordination whatsoever. For that reason, we have to understand that the pastoral office and pastoral function are the same thing.” – Al Mohler, 10 Points of Complementarianism
Three strains of Reformed and Presbyterian Confessions
- The Dutch Reformed hold the “Three Forms of Unity” (3FU) which encompass the Belgic Confession (1561), The Heidelberg Catechism (1563), and the Canons of Dort (1619).
- The Swiss Reformed have the Second Helvetic Confession (1566).
- The Scottish Presbyterians hold to the Westminster Confessions – WCF (1647) and Shorter (1647) and Larger (1648) Catechisms.
The Westminster Confession also has a revised American version (1788) which denounced Establishmentarianism (the idea that the church should run the civil government).
Later, in 1689, came the London Baptist Confession, which is essentially a Baptist version of the Westminster.
NOTE: There is/was a “new” strain of “Reformed” theology that became popular through John Piper, John MacArthur, and others. Piper later dubbed this “New Calvinism.” I and many other Calvinist/Presbyterians reject this “New Calvinism” as not being Reformed. So we distinguish ourselves as “Old School” Presbyterians. Another term that shouldn’t be confused with “New Calvinism” is “neocalvinism” which was a historical resurgence of the Dutch Reformed tradition through Abraham Kuyper.
John Piper is responsible for both “New Calvinism” (2014) and the Danver’s Statement (1987) and the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood (1988). His “12 Points of New Calvinism” has “Complementarianism” as a cornerstone tenant, among other tenants I find questionable.
Luther on Vocation by Gustaf Wingren
God at Work by Gene Edward Veith
The Reformation on Vocation by D. G. Hart
Resources on Deaconesses in Church History
Deaconesses: An Historical Study by Aime Georges Martimort
Deacons and Deaconesses Through the Centuries by Jeannine E. Olson
A Historical and Biblical Examination of Women Deacons by Brian Schwertly
OPC Report of the Committee on Women in Church Office
Phoebe Was a Deaconess, but She Was Not Ordained by Gregory E. Reynolds
Additional Resources of Interest
Numbers 27:1-11, Sermon by OPC Pastor, Matthew Cotta
Images of the Spirit by Meredith Kline
Women in the Church – A Redemptive Historical Approach by Pastor Todd Bordow
What is Feminism in Simple Terms? | Dare to Think
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Full (uncut) Interview with Deaconess Melissa DeGroot (56 minutes)
In the uncut version, we also discuss hierarchy, authoritarianism in the church, and a woman’s Christian liberty. To listen to the whole interview, you must be one of my monthly members. If you’re already a member, just login to view this content.