1 Timothy 2:12–13, “But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet. 13 For it was Adam who was first created, and then Eve.”
The position of pastor has long been under fire from progressives, especially in America. Many argue that any women can hold the position as pastor and have authority over men. This topic tends to get heated as liberal Christians advocate for change within the church, from allowing female pastors, to allowing gays to marry, or in some churches, having a gay pastor. The view of complementarianism is one traditionally held by conservative Christians, where men and women are created equal in God’s eye, but have different but complementary roles in the family, church and elsewhere. The church has been the biggest point of attack, along with family roles by liberals; even from those outside the faith have been chiming in.
Paul establishes the roles of family in his letter to the Ephesians, but we’ll be looking at the church structure and requirements that Paul gives us. In a different article, The Weight of the Pulpit, I detailed the requirements of becoming a pastor, the struggles, and obstacles that men face. As Paul lays out the requirements, he is specifically addressing men in these passages found in 1 Timothy and Titus. This alone would disqualify any women from preaching, because of how detailed Paul is of establishing the roles of the elder and husband. We see as we journey through 1 Timothy that he continues to establish the role in the church. By examining some context in this letter, we see that in the first chapter verses 3-11 Paul gives fair warning to Timothy about teachers with strange doctrines. He then transitions gears until revisiting the structure of the church in verses 9-15 in Chapter 2. It is in these verses that Paul sets forth that women are not to hold authority over man, which would include the office of pastor. There are many arguments that people try to present here, from indicating this is referring to a single woman, or that this is in fact talking about headship in the home, yet by just understanding context of what Paul is talking about and knowing the requirements of the office of pastor, we know that men are to lead the church. Women still play important roles with youth or women’s ministry, but the pulpit should be managed by man. Women have in my honest opinion one of the most important roles in the family and that is looking after the children, and same goes for ministry. But we have been given roles by God, and we must honor and uphold these roles.
Paul lays it out clear in his letters, even if in today’s culture it is unpopular. We must not bend to the will of the world, but stand firm the creation of God, and the design He has set forth for us. There is a very well written article on https://carm.org that details Paul’s command. Matt Slick does a fantastic job breaking down arguments and providing an in depth look at scripture.