Swimming against the tide

One argument for the egalitarian position on women in ministry is to posit that one reason why there weren’t women pastor/elders in the New Testament is because to have done so would have made the new faith disreputable to the surrounding culture. Doug Wilson (not surprisingly) disagrees:

“It is very easy for objectors to say that the reason Christian women were not allowed to become religious ministers back in the ‘olden time’ was because the position of women in society back then would have made the Christian faith disreputable to outsiders if women were allowed to function in this way . . . The problem with this argument is that it is actually the reverse of the truth. The Christian church did not have to exclude women in order to fit right in. Excluding women from the ministry was the odd thing to do. The ancient world was crawling with priestesses, and if Christians had admitted women into their ministry, no one would have raised an eyebrow. The church took the counter-cultural route and did something that made her stand out — which is, incidentally, what we are being called to do” (Why Ministers Must be Men, pp. 10-11). HT: Doug Wilson