Women in Ministry: Dan Doriani

Discussion in 'Ecclesiology' started by Romans922, Mar 22, 2017.

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  1. Romans922

    Romans922 Puritan Board Professor

    Would someone summarize Dan Doriani's view of women in ministry? I have no time to read his book. Thanks.
     
  2. Romans922

    Romans922 Puritan Board Professor

    Nobody?
     
  3. Edward

    Edward Puritan Board Doctor

    I guess no one else did, either.
     
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  4. Romans922

    Romans922 Puritan Board Professor

    Well, I've heard this is the view the Study Committee on Women for the PCA will take. And from what I have vaguely gathered from others is that this means women deaconnesses, but only male elders. But I wanted confirmation.
     
  5. Edward

    Edward Puritan Board Doctor

    That's been my understanding of the planned result since they started. Their goals - For now.
     
  6. Romans922

    Romans922 Puritan Board Professor

    Well of course it is. Has been since 2008 (*cough 1983). But sometimes you get 'hope' when men like Ligon Duncan and Harry Reeder are on the committee. Then again, there have been lots of times of 'hope' in the passed only to see it dashed to pieces. It only affirms over and over to stop trusting in men (who confess one thing, and yet don't stand up for what is confessed when the time comes to defend it).
     
  7. NaphtaliPress

    NaphtaliPress Administrator Staff Member

    Anything other than retaining male officers only gives the liberal rot a victory. What is the status of the kill the committee overtures?
     
  8. Romans922

    Romans922 Puritan Board Professor

    It will be answered in the negative as it was referred to the Study Committee itself... "Hey, uh, I move to dismiss the committee." *Refer motion to dismiss the committee, to that committee...* "Committee loves itself too much and since the General Assembly made us, we really can't dismiss ourselves when only one Presbytery made the motion to dismiss us." ****Conflict of Interest****

    But such are our 'Rules'. If you wanted to dismiss an entire permanent committee of the General Assembly, the overture would go to that permanent committee for recommendation.
     
  9. NaphtaliPress

    NaphtaliPress Administrator Staff Member

    Well, hopefully they read it. What about a motion from the floor of GA?
     
  10. Romans922

    Romans922 Puritan Board Professor

    Unneeded when the Overture will come from a recommendation from the Study Committee itself. Someone would just have to make a substitute motion when it is taken up.
     
  11. NaphtaliPress

    NaphtaliPress Administrator Staff Member

    Well, hopefully folks at least make the right motions.
     
  12. earl40

    earl40 Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    Now that is discouraging.
     
  13. Romans922

    Romans922 Puritan Board Professor

    There is an overture to change that rule this year. :)
     
  14. NaphtaliPress

    NaphtaliPress Administrator Staff Member

    Permanent status of being in the PCA. But as Andrew indicated the PCA has been on this Titanic trajectory for a long time.
     
  15. earl40

    earl40 Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    I see this clearly even as a layman.
     
  16. BG

    BG Puritan Board Junior

    The PCA will have women deacons soon, this is just a stepping stone to the real goal of women Elders. If you survey/search PCA web sites you will see that women already hold STAFF/paid positions and are already doing the work that only elders should do. The downgrade began long ago, may God send revival soon.
     
  17. Romans922

    Romans922 Puritan Board Professor

    There are already churches that have women deacons contrary to the government of the church. So far, no amendment to the government of the church has passed General Assembly. There have only been attempts to study the issue. Because then upon studying the issue, it is recommended to change the government of the church. However, up until this past year, such attempts at study committees like this have failed.

    The big hurdle currently is: 1) approve the study committee report if it does include positive affirmations of women as deacons; 2) proposing a BCO (church government) change [which could only come about next year, unless the study committee recommends a BCO change]; 3) General Assembly approving that change; and 4) THE BIGGEST HURDLE - 2/3 of the Presbyteries agreeing with the BCO change [and if then approved by Presbyteries, a majority of the General Assembly again].
     
  18. NaphtaliPress

    NaphtaliPress Administrator Staff Member

    i.e. since we are liars and vow breakers any way, change the constitution to what we want.
     
  19. arapahoepark

    arapahoepark Puritan Board Graduate

    If I may ask where do most PCA pastors come from seminary wise? Does anyone know? I would think that has a lot to do with it and its now broad evangelicalism.
     
  20. Pete Williamson

    Pete Williamson Puritan Board Freshman

    As a newcomer to both the PCA and the PB, I recognize that I don't know everything about either, but even so I felt compelled to respond to this thread as not only disheartening for its pessimism, but in danger of drifting into slander/bearing false witness. I share the concern about the possible direction this discussion could take, but as far as I can tell no one actually knows what's going to happen - we just seem to be making assumptions about people and books that we haven't read. Moreover, I'm concerned that the pessimism of this thread is leading to resignation rather than action. Let's first of all pray for this committee, esp. that God would humble and guide the members in all truth so that they present a document that faithfully represents the teaching of God's Word. Secondly, I think we should pray for boldness for all of us in the face of challenges such as this, that we would stand strong against those who would misuse Scriptures out of fear of what men might think.

    May God give strength and courage to His church!
     
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  21. Edward

    Edward Puritan Board Doctor

    I don't have any hard numbers, but the Reformeds should lead (Jackson, Orlando, Charlotte, fill in the blank). Covenant may be second, with the Westminsters third. Shrinking pool from the PCUS/PCUSA seminaries; probably as many from Dispensational and Baptist seminaries as from conservative presbyterian ones.
     
  22. Edward

    Edward Puritan Board Doctor

    It may be a new show for you, but it is a re-run for those of us who have been around long enough to have seen the PCUS in the 1960s.
     
  23. Pete Williamson

    Pete Williamson Puritan Board Freshman

    I can appreciate that; I'm familiar enough with the history of the presbyterian church to know that this isn't the first time this issue has been faced. My concern is that the discussion on this thread seems to be heading toward a foregone conclusion before we (a) know the facts or (b) have done what we can to stand against it.

    One of the big reasons why I have pursued entry into the PCA is that - as far as I understand it - there are structures in place that can be used to prevent the sort of "Titanic trajectory" from coming to fruition. I understand that the GA has suffered from low attendance in recent years - maybe this is the wake-up call we need to show up so that we can state our case, cast our vote, and turn this trend around. The talk on this thread comes across as though progressivism/liberalism has already won, but from what I am able to tell we're not even into the second half of the game yet. If we care at all about the PCA, then now's the time for us to enter into the fray, not bemoan its demise.

    For the sake of clarity, I just want to restate that I say all this as a newcomer with all due respect for you all as well as an understanding that I may be horribly naive in what I've said. I mean in no way any disrespect to any of you. I love what the PCA has to offer and I'm not willing to accept the narrative that I'm boarding a ship that's already sunk. Of course it's possible that you all might be right, but I believe that there's still the possibility of a different outcome. History also tells that story as well.
     
  24. NaphtaliPress

    NaphtaliPress Administrator Staff Member

    Well, since you quoted my phrasing let me opine that I think, yes, you are naive. That's not necessarily a bad place to be starting out somewhere new but it depends on just how late in the game it is. Sadly, we're way past half time. The main game is over which was settled in 2003 with good faith subscription passing. Things have continued on their expected course since that was forced through over the sizeable minority's objections. I won't quote with attribution as I don't have permission but one TE told me "The liberals are in charge in the PCA. The PCA has already sent a clear message to itself that church discipline has gone the way of the dodo bird. No one will be disciplined for anything," and he affirmed that "it doesn't matter if the issue [women's ordination] is buried technically with a sound report [from this committee] because it actually won't be." I am firmly convinced that the PCA will continue to slide toward the iceberg until it (and only until) it recovers basic godliness, with the first priority, the purity of God's worship and the due sanctification of the Lord's Day. This was warned at the PCA's beginning which quote I cited at the end of my bit on the PCA and the Sabbath that appeared in the 2016 issue of The Confessional Presbyterian. I have no wish to be right; but I've never seen anything dramatic enough to tell me that I'm wrong.

    “The Pattern of Success.
    The Continuing Church appears now to be well under way. However, we ought to keep uppermost in our planning the kind of organization we intend to build. Are we to be content with simply a proper theology, Church aims that conform to the Great Commission, and right attitudes toward morals? These things are essential, and we must have them. However, it is necessary ever to keep in mind that what we are striving for is quality and not quantity—not number of churches, number of members, number of dollars, but discipline. We must have a return to the old Presbyterian emphasis on character building, on Sabbath observance, family worship, Bible study, catechism, and plain common honesty and truthfulness. And of course all this must be suffused with the love of God and the compassion and tenderness of Christ. There wasn’t much the matter with our Church from 1861 to 1920. But then we relaxed and began to slip along all these lines. In 1921 there were over four thousand recitations of the catechisms, and numerous family altars were reported. Today such things have almost vanished. From the very infancy of the new Church we must turn over a brand new leaf and make a completed fresh start. Every minister, every session, every Sunday school teacher should be dedicated to the supreme task of building character, and be satisfied with nothing less. Any other course will bring us fifty years hence to another division. But only as long as the new Church is solid in its faith and moral character will it be permanent in fact as we all so earnestly pray."
    “Dropping the Subject, Again? The Decline of Sabbatarianism in the Old Southern Presbyterian Church and in the Presbyterian Church in America,” The Confessional Presbyterian 12 (2016), 99.

    I'm sure folks roll their eyes because I place such importance in this issue, but the Sabbath issue is the canary in the coal mine and it is the reason the above referenced journal was fully themed on that one subject (we're usually are not that tightly themed). But here are three witnesses spaced roughly 50 years from each other avouching just how important an issue it is.

    1. "No Sabbath, no religion, is a maxim which you may safely apply, both to individuals and to communities." (Ashbel Green, Lectures on the Shorter Catechism, 1841).

    2. [The creation ordinances of marriage and the sabbath] are so wrought into our being that marriage lies at the root of our earthly welfare, and the Sabbath at the root of our spiritual and eternal welfare.

    This is so true, that if marriage, which the enemies of mankind want to destroy, and the Sabbath, which the enemies of God want to destroy, were got rid of, all order would be upset and the world be turned into a pandemonium. So true is this, that always wherever the law of marriage and the law of Sabbath have been most faithfully observed the nations have been most mighty and prosperous. You see, then, that in the nature of the case, the Sabbath was designed to be a permanent and universal institution. If, like marriage, it is fixed in man’s nature, and woven into the constitution and order of things, even God himself could not do away with it without making our nature all over again.

    W. F. V. Bartlett, “The Sabbath-Day,” in Southern Presbyterian Pulpit: A Collection of Sermons (Richmond, VA: The Presbyterian Committee of Publication, 1896), 389–390.

    3. “Let us beware brethren: As goes the Sabbath, so goes the church, as goes the church, so goes the nation. Any people who neglect the duties and privileges of the Sabbath day soon lose the knowledge of true religion and become pagan. If men refuse to retain God in their knowledge; God declares that He will give them over to a reprobate mind. Both history and experience confirm this truth.” Minutes of the Sixty-First General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in the United States, A. D. 1948 (Richmond, Va.: Presbyterian Committee of Publication, 1948), 183.


     
  25. Romans922

    Romans922 Puritan Board Professor

    Without any doubt, Covenant Seminary is putting more men into the PCA every year as ministers than any other seminary. I may even be tempted to say CTS vs all others combined.
     
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  26. earl40

    earl40 Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    I am afraid to ask...almost. ;) Is this good or bad so far as this thread is concerned?
     
  27. Romans922

    Romans922 Puritan Board Professor

    No comment :) was just aiding in answering that question.
     
  28. Edward

    Edward Puritan Board Doctor

    I should have asked for a clarification to the original question. I was thinking the total corpus of pastors rather than the current influx.

    I will say that one area where the PCUSA far surpasses the other Presbyterian denominations is in the area of statistics. PCA statistics tend to be good enough to use to make educated guesses.
     
  29. Reepicheep

    Reepicheep Puritan Board Freshman

    I'm guessing the PCA will probably pass some kind kind of overture that will allow congregations to decide if they have women deacons. Basically they'll make legal what apparently quite a few PCA congregations already do. I think the PCA Churches that list deaconesses are able to skirt the constitutional question by not ordaining them as deaconesses with the usual PCA BCO protocol. I'm not sure. I find such a practice at very least disrespectful of our clear standards.

    As to what seminary is placing the most graduates in the PCA, It must still be Covenant. But it should be noted there is a pretty noticeable difference between graduates depending on when they attended/graduated. There has been a huge turn over of professors in the last ten years. I am forever grateful for my time at Covenant (1995-98) and especially for my professors (almost all of whom are retired or in glory), so I won't use a forum like this to critique the seminary currently. I do confess intrigue about how persona non grata certain pre 2011ish alumni apparently are... :)

    Denominations seem to have effective shelf-lives. The PCA is no different. Eventually there will be the need for a new denomination.

    The PCA adopted a "good faith subscription" approach to the WCF something like ten or fifteen years ago. This makes connectional ministry frustrating for those who still want her to be more strictly confessional. It doesn't necessarily impact presbyteries as much and there is quite a bit of autonomy for local congregations. The PCA is not as loose and broadly evangelical as the EPC, but it's not as tight and Reformed as the OPC/URCNA/RPCNA/RCUS. It occupies some kind of middle Reformed quasi confessional place.

    I predict women deacons will get passed in some form within the next 3-5 years.
     
  30. Edward

    Edward Puritan Board Doctor

    That's a pretty safe prediction. The bigger questions for round one are:

    Will the women be ordained or non- ordained?
    If non-ordained, will ordained men be required?

    I expect it to be voluntary at the congregational level in the first round, that may last up to 10 years.
     
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