The Seventh-day Adventist Church is poised to debate and to vote Wednesday on whether or not it is acceptable for divisions to make provision for the ordination of women within their territories. While the vote carries significant symbolic weight, the question as it is phrased has very little practical significance.
In this video produced by the Southeastern California Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, Chris Oberg, senior pastor of La Sierra University church, interviews Sandra Roberts, president of Southeastern California Conference, on her views of the 60th General Conference Session in San Antonio, Texas. As the video reveals, President Roberts will be one of the delegates on the floor of the Session as ordination is up for discussion. Roberts has voice and vote.
I hear again and again how well Sandra Roberts serves the Southeastern California Conference. This interview underscores, to someone from another place, why this is so; it is a welcome blast of hope for the future. As Roberts says, we not only can, but we WILL, affirm the values of the Jesus story even as we celebrate the amazing diversity and global reach of Adventism. Chuck
Several year’s ago, I was privileged to work with Sandi over several months on a project at my local church (prior to her being voted in as President). I found her to have great discernment, be incredibly tough and strong when she needed to be, but always emanating love and caring for people. A shining light for what Christian leadership can be.
Being President of a conference like SECC is a tremendously demanding job. Over a hundred churches with thousands of members (and millions of opinions) comprising most of the language and ethnicities from around the world. There is probably not a more diverse conference in all the world. I can’t think of a better person for the job. It’s people like Sandi that are the reason I continue to remain part of corporate Seventh-day Adventism, rather than just keeping the principles of the faith and leaving the structure (and divisions) of the denomination.
sandi mentions that nad is now only 7% of the world church, and chris points out that that 7% are not in step with each other as a group…i think i’ve always heard that the global south is growing exponentially, but when sandi brought up the challenges of doing business together when basic culture is so disparate, one can see and feel the difficulties associated with being such a minority…
the best solution, of course, would be for the global north to grow at a rate that can match the growth rate in the global south…but until that happens, i think sandi’s solution of being a model for the rest of the world is the challenge wo advocates will have to accept…and no doubt that won’t be easy…the very first person who came to a mike, after the ordination question was read from the floor of the alamodome - from south america, if i recall what i saw through spectrum’s periscope feed - asked what we’re going to do with those unions that have gone ahead with women’s ordination against the will of the world church…i thought i detected a desire for vengeance and punishment, like a stoning or something…if this feeling is representative of a broader feeling in the global south, it may be fortuitous that nad has moved out of gc headquarters…we started adventism with no-one’s help, and we may have to finish it with no-one’s help…i agree completely with sandi that we can’t compromise on our value of gender equality…
or perhaps we get the church we don’t suspect…the global north has invested untold millions in evangelizing the global south…these converts, as delegates, are now coming to general conferences, at the church’s expense, and completely ignoring the concerns of those who did so much to bring them the gospel in the first place…it’s an ugly time for our church, that’s for sure…
i agree with sandy roberts that leaders in the global north are going to have to come to terms with the new reality that the global south, through sheer numbers, may be setting our agenda now…
I strongly recommend prayerfully reading Numbers 16 and the corresponding chapter in Patriarch and Prophets, as it is an almost exact typology of this WO issue today. There were 250 who wanted to be ordained priests, who were not of the order of Aaron. Led into rebellion by Korah, these dear folks perished in a purging fire from God, but not after He swallowed up the families Korah, Nadab and Abihu, the leaders of the rebellion. There arguments are almost word-for-word what we are hearing today.
Jeremiah, may I kindly remind you that all of our pastors are not of the order of Aaron…therefore this story has nothing to do with Wo. In our case, the Holy Spirit has clearly shown that God has gifted and called these women, who are we, not to recognize that?
The order of priest changed to pastor as the Gospel went to the world instead of just the Israelites. Your argument is empty, as the order of being ordained is clearly given in Timothy ant Titus, as well as EGW.
To attribute to the Holy Spirit what is actually inspired by satan(Excessive. - webEd) is blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit does not call women against the Word of God. The Bible clearly tells us that if the spirit does not agree with the Word, it is not the Holy Spirit. Be careful.
"15 But some of them said, He casteth out devils through Beelzebub the chief of the devils.
16 And others, tempting him, sought of him a sign from heaven.
17 But he, knowing their thoughts, said unto them, Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and a house divided against a house falleth.
18 If Satan also be divided against himself, how shall his kingdom stand? because ye say that I cast out devils through Beelzebub.
19 And if I by Beelzebub cast out devils, by whom do your sons cast them out? therefore shall they be your judges.
20 But if I with the finger of God cast out devils, no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you.
21 When a strong man armed keepeth his palace, his goods are in peace:
22 But when a stronger than he shall come upon him, and overcome him, he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils.
23 He that is not with me is against me: and he that gathereth not with me scattereth.
Attributing to the devil what is clearly the work of God is serious…
God has clearly called EGW as he has called the chinese women pastors…do you insist that this is the work of satan? I will try to pray for you!
Then how do we explain the women who God called to lead Israel in the OT? How do we explain Ellen White? Are we to say that God is inconsistent on who He calls, and if so then how are we to determine which women are and aren’t being called by God? The Word must never be used as a weapon of oppression against others, but rather the freedom in Christ that it is known for.
You’re buying into incorrect propaganda. What women were leaders? Miriam? She led the women in singing, other other similar tasks. Deborah? She merely served as a judge of civil affairs as no man wanted the job. When it came to waging and leading war, Barak was the one who did it.
As for EGW, she clearly never was ordained, and when her statements referring to the subject are viewed in entirety, she clearly spoke of women having a shepherding role and men a role in becoming pastors.
It takes much twisting (or just ignorance) of scriptures to come to other conclusions.