On the heels of my previous post about calling men to seeing and living a vision of biblical masculinity, I offer this post from The Council for Biblical Manhood & Womanhood. It’s a summary of a talk given by Susan Hunt (pastor’s wife, author, and speaker) at the recent True Woman conference. Here she presents a biblical vision for women’s ministry. It is thoughtful, practical, and about all, biblical.
Although I am re-posting the article below, I encourage you to go to the CBMW site and take advantage of the many resources it offers. Pastors, consider this as you think (or rethink) about your church’s women’s ministry. Sisters, consider whether your ministry matches up with this biblical vision for women’s ministry.
Susan Hunt Casts Vision for Women’s Ministry
November 18, 2008Summary: Susan Hunt is a Pastor’s wife, speaker, author, consultant to Presbyterian Church in America’s Women in the Church Ministry. Mrs. Hunt also serves on the Council of Biblical Manhood and Womanhood and makes her home in Marietta, Georgia.
“Women’s ministry is not about women’s rights or about women’s feats, it’s about expressing our love for Jesus and His church – his body.” With this compelling quote, Mrs. Susan Hunt begins her pre-conference seminar just prior to the recent True Woman conference which took place in Schaumburg, Illinois.
A pastor’s wife of 45 years, Susan Hunt, ministers out of the joy of being adopted through Christ into God’s family. She warns against forming a list of tasks that often degenerate into a legalistic approach to women’s ministry. Rather she calls for the equipping of godly, mature women who can pass on to the next generation a love for the gospel ands its life-giving impact.
She begins with a biblical foundation for women’s ministry from Luke 8:1-3. Hunt shows how women supported the ministry of Jesus with their own means. Bound by the common experience of grace in Christ Jesus, these women truly complemented the work of Christ.
Also, from Mark 16:1, Mrs. Hunt shows how women loved the body of Jesus by anointing it with spices honorably and practically. Yet, the stone needed to be rolled away. She urged the women present to go and tell of Christ, despite the stones of sin that threaten to hinder the message ofChrist. Trust God – He will remove the stones.
Her story forms the basis of her encouragement to the women present to seek to establish and carryout gospel-oriented women’s ministries. She tells of her meditation on five key passages from Paul that frame an apologetic for women’s ministry in the local church.
- From 1 Timothy 2:11, 12 – First is the principle of ecclesiastical submission. She calls women to establish their ministry under the oversight and protection of the leadership of the local church – its elders, pastor or deacons.
- From 1 Timothy 3:8-15 she shows the principle of compassion. Womenare to take the initiative in mercy ministries in the local church. From Luke 2 she shows that women must take the lead in serving women whose soul has been pierced by the sword of sin or hardship.
- From 1 Timothy 5:9-10 she draws the principle of community. Small acts of godliness, often unsung by the culture, make the life of the local church beautiful.
- From Titus 2 Mrs. Hunt draws out the principle of gender-specific discipleship. Understanding, wisdom, compassion, integrity and honor all depend on helping men serve men, and women serve women.
- From 2 Timothy 3:1-7 suggests the principle of maturity. She upholds the goal of becoming women able to refute error with sound doctrine from the Scriptures and able to articulate the gospel to the next generation.
Mrs. Hunt articulates a spiritually powerful and biblically careful vision for women’s ministry in the local church. The above five texts give rise to the five principles that form her vision. From this vision come women’s ministries that fulfill God’s creative design, focuses on the gospel of Jesus Christ and thus strengthens the women involved and blesses the entire local church.