The theology is the idea and gracious allowance of Christian freedom to follow ones conscience, and to pursue effective mission within ones culture… especially concerning an issue such as this. Whether one sees WO one way or another.
We can debate the theology of WO all we want. Our scholars couldn’t pin it down biblically one way or another. It does seem more culturally conditioned as a result. But freedom within a unified diversity of practice on such issues is not just cultural… it is woven into the Christian ethos. It’s there in the NT. It’s there in the Jerusalem council. It’s there in Romans 14-15. It seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to them.
Somehow it doesn’t to TW, and the other authoritarian regional leadership of this church. The theological question is, where is the Spirit in such imposed uniformity?
Patrik, ordaining women is directly related to the Protestant foundational doctrine of The Priesthood of ALL Believers.
With the Resurrection of Christ, the Holy Spirit was sent to equip Christ’s followers, first at Pentecost. With a larger cadre of workers, the mission of getting the Gospel to every end of the earth is expedited, supplemented, speeded up, advanced. The mission is directly affected.
This essay is an opinion piece by one who does not like or respect the president. We all have a right to an opinion, but this harsh criticism is over the top, the writer is too biased.
Was that not tired for a year without success before the vote? Paulson, the righteous one, did or would not do it. Ted tried with the TOSC, but now gets dinged because he did not do it after the vote. To exactly a fair criticism.
Their position is a mis-interpretation of scripture. There is no command for this! Where does morality come in? Is the rest of the church immoral because it does not agree? Now that is hubris.
This shows the bias of the author. Better to say, “those who do not support WO.” The author seems to believe that TW is the one sole individual whom all others follow. The vote showed that something like 60% did not favor allowing the West to do WO. That is not Ted, but the majority of the church. But the author will accept no other ideas than that TW is solely responsible for the failure of the church to vote his view. That is a misinterpretation of the issue.
It seems, if what is said here is so, that TW overstepped. The Unions are just as much to blame, for they, too, have overstepped. They have not respected the will of the church as a whole. They have refused to take counsel. To just blame TW, who seems to be trying to keep issues such as this from dividing the church, is slanted to say the least. The Unions have some blame to take. The author paints them as if they are thoroughly righteous. That is not so.
I don’t mind being shaken out of the current confusion and Babylon and Great controversy currently raging in the Adventist Church.
Very sadly, the laity cannot look up for inspiration or direction but look down in shame and discouragement.
Sing the following words to the very Adventist song called “We have this hope” (SDA Hymn 214):
“We have this hopeless situation now, it is called Women’s ordination…”
It’s time for Adventist Reformation in the 500th year of Reformation in 2017. Before we tell others what to do, we need to tell ourselves what we should be doing about the mission at hand rather than who should have what position.
I highly recommend viewing the Loma Linda University Church vespers of October 14 on this topic. Jon Paulien provided some very gracious comments about Elder Wilson based on his personal relationship with him. It remains that the methods Elder Wilson has implemented through this entire process have failed to bring unity and raises the question about who among his associates does he rely on for counsel and advice? (It is assumed that both sides study the Bible, pray and draw counsel from the SOP.) Does he sincerely seek input from those who oppose his position? I remember his words before the GC2015 vote in what appeared to be a direct attempt to sway the outcome at the time. No matter how one tries to interpret his motives and methods, coercion, secrecy and overreach as presented in this article are never God’s way to win our trust and guide a spiritually mature people. To quote a friend, “You can’t win battles for God using Satan’s methods.” I appreciate the discussion here, the words of Jon Paulien and I agree with Elder Jan Paulsen’s assessment - I did not see God’s hand in this attempt to pass the 14-page document. A different approach is needed…or if not likely to occur, new leadership at the GC.
Yes. This is a weird irony in which the fallible ‘voters’ are flip-flopped by the fallible winner of an election into both the high position of speaking for God, and at the same time becoming vulnerable to punishment from the elected leader as if they were the lowest of devils.
Adolph Hitler won ‘the vote’. Richard Nixon won ‘the vote’. Ted Wilson won ‘the vote’ . . . .
However, ultimately, ‘truth’ and ‘right’ are not the product of ‘the vote’ – which can only look hopefully, but blindly, into the future. They are the eternal standard by which leadership is judged in ‘hindsight’. And this ‘hindsight’ record – this ‘legacy’ – consist’s of the vote winner’s personal choices, not the choices of the voters who chose to trust them. In the end all leaders must answer for the actions of their own wills, or ironically, they invalidate ‘the vote’ that they ‘won’ – ‘the will of the people’ – in order to take action.
So, if ‘truth’ and ‘right’ are desired, voters must learn not to surrender their wills to fallible human leaders who have not surrendered their own wills to the eternal principles of ‘truth’ and ‘right’ in the first place, as that Chosen One has, in Whom:
“Mercy and truth are met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other.” Psalm 85:10
Next time, ‘Vote Christ’, alone.
"O Israel, thou hast destroyed thyself; but in me is thine help.
I will be thy king: where is any other that may save thee in all thy cities?
and thy judges of whom thou saidst, Give me a king and princes?"
“unintended consequences” . . . For instance:
Is the ‘Council of Adventist Pastors’ – ‘CAP’ – compliant, or non-compliant with church policy ?
At what point does ‘strong male leadership’ become ‘rogue leadership’ ?
If GC-voted authority is truly sufficient, then why do these strong men seek to supplement it ?
. . . as if ‘the ark’ of God’s own presence and promises, in fact, needed Uzzah’s (Hebrew name meaning ‘strength’) strong human hand to steady it.
Will the Pacific Union/SCC meet the same fate as Catalonia? The parallel’s are eerily similar. Change the names. Same playbook. Go for it. In the case of the GC, it is a nuclear option. Mutually assured destruction.
During a recent visit in Africa, I asked the SDA workers – all males – about their position on WO. The chorus: „No way! It is against our African culture“. Then the women passed by, and I asked them the same question. Without any hesitation, they replied: „Of course women should we ordained!“.
Suddenly I understood the whole problem around WO. It is about power; and as long as a majority of delegates are mainly males who want to have the say in the church – and very probably at home --, the spirit of domination (and oppression) will prevail at all levels. The whole discussion on WO is symptomatic for the clash between the striving for domination and the spirit of Jesus (Phil.2:6-8). Not less and not more.
This is the crux of the matter: is it a theological or cultural issue? Not everybody agrees as for the nature of the question. This is one of the reasons why people are not on the same wavelength.
Haarpa, the notion of priesthood of ALL Believers is not a Protestant doctrine as it is already found in the Old Testament. And in the Old Testament, this doctrine didn’t mean that women could be priestesses. So, to say that, today, it means that women can now be ordained doesn’t hold water.
I wonder if these Bible verses should be regarded as the command of God or is it just a recording of what the church did, in a historical sense. We should remember that all of Rome and Greece communities were overwhelmingly male dominated societies.
Unchangeable doctrine should spring first from Jesus–when after his resurrection he appeared first to women and more important commanded them to go tell the male disciples he had risen. Jesus first employed and entrusted women, thus recognizing their equality (or superiority). The Holy Spirit included women in the Upper Room experience. What more proof do we want to show us the way.
Allen Shepard: “He certainly could have made use of that ready resource. But he did not he sent only men.”
I don’t know how you could say he send “only men” when the HS included women in the upper room experience. For what purpose, to be witnesses.
I look at the first appearance of Jesus to women as a planned event. A message from Jesus that women have an equal ability and calling to spread the gospel. Jesus made it plain that women had greater faith and devotion than men. What greater qualification could you have. Furthermore when Jesus was taken up into heaven there were men and women present.
Anyway Jesus could not have had a women among the 12. History would have created endless stories of sortedness.
I have a theory. The OT ref is in Ex 19. Is it possible that God WANTED to make them a kingdom of priests but had to scrap that idea due to the ensuing idolatry at Sinai? Is it possible that God keeps bringing us around to this. Could this be why Jesus told them not to call each other by special titles but that they were all to be brothers? Could this be what finally happens in the end, that God’s people can love each other and not not usurp authority over each other like the world does.[quote=“GeorgeTichy, post:43, topic:14607”]
does not listen to reason or to reasonable people
George, is it possible that he CAN’T see other people’s point of view? You know, we are all damaged goods. Is it possible that his brain never added abstract thinking to his concrete operations? Maybe he’s stuck in concrete. For this reason the second year of grace that has been forced upon him is probably stygianly painful for him… If this is true we need to adjust how we try to reason with him.
Don’t try to force our ways of Bible study on him. It is possible to present our points even with the limitations of ultra literalism. Dont talk about diversity, talk about how what we are promoting will bring unity. Talk about what he thinks ordination means and extrapolate from there. He believes the subordination of women reflects (Jesus forgive me for typing this) the subordination of Jesus to the Father. OK, let us proof text how the Father has given Jesus all His power, all His honor, all His titles of diety, all His authority.
Maybe we are wasting our time and energy with such as have this focus on the wrong battles. We need to have pity on one another and turn our efforts on ways that have a chance of getting thru, of working. Way I see it, those of us who get it have a responsibility to gently consider and respond to those who don’t.
BTW the TOSC is a very useful way of showing that the 1990 vote was uninformed. Then we insist on reviewing the results of TOSC. This will not work for those in concrete but it does wonders for those many who have merely been lacking in information. And a text i never hear used tho I have found it most helpful is Phil 1;18. Let us say for the sake of discussion that the women pastors are preaching from false motives, preaching is still happening, so they can rejoice.
It appears that long ago TW decided to wear blinders, so his visual field is limited to what he decides is truth - for himself and for others as well. This is the foundation of his theological and psychological landscape. Since he is irreducible, does not listen to reason or to reasonable people, and has a very high consideration of himself as being 2nd only to God - and actually representing God on Earth…, he is totally predictable!
Whys is he predictable? Because people with those traits do not change, do not want to change, and despise those who dare to disagree with them. Has he changed in any way since the beginning of his career as the GC Prez? NO! Therefore, he is totally predictable.
Right now he is taking a 2nd Year of Grace, to work on some new, more efficient tactics that will work better than what he just attempted a few days ago. I only wonder if he will keep the FAKE Unity Committee meeting regularly to give the impression, again, that it’s their work that will be presented to the plenary for voting next year at the AC18.
The FAKE TOSC cost over $1mi only to have it’s results tossed at the last minute and be replaced by a simple in-famous question generated during some secret meeting at TW’s office. Then the FAKE Unity Committee worked for another year only to get 14 sheets of paper “pre-approved…” by Ted Wilson. How much did that cost? And, had the Fake Unity Committee actually any report to present?..
And now, after 184-114, there comes the FAKE Unity Committee Phase II. Hope people keep pitching in to pay for this one too…
Sam, upon reading your post I must say that I don’t see ANY possibility of such apology being EVER issued by people who be,ieve in discrimination.
Based on my long-term experience in dealing clinically with people I am confident to state that discrimination appears to be a process that reinforces the addiction process in the brain, therefore it is addictive. I am sure that our fantastically gifted resident Psychiatrist, @elmer_cupino, has lots to teach us about this process - though unfortunately in this OneGagSite we cannot have a real open conversation on any issue - which is a tremendous damage to any progress on the understanding of the issues addressed. Why don’t you post (copy) your comment also on Adventist Today, thus we could have a healthy discussion of the theme, open to the worldwide readers.
I agree George and I see the parallel between FAKE Unity Committee Phase II and waste of time, money and effort that all these “antics” are causing. n behalf of the SDA Church,pain and turmoil that this woman’s ordination debate has caused in our church. We need to heal. We need to apologize to each other and in particular to the women in our church for the mistreatment and inequity they have endured. A genuine apology needs to include three important elements.
Taking responsibility is important, but it’s also helpful for the other person to know that you feel bad about hurting them, and wish you hadn’t. We have in numerous ways treated women unfairly at all levels. That’s it. They already feel bad, and they’d like to know that you feel bad about them feeling bad. “I wish I had been more thoughtful.” “I wish I’d thought of your feelings as well.” “I wish I could take it back.” These are all expressions of regret that add to the sincerity of your apology, and let the other person know we all care.
2… Make Amends
Take immediate steps to amend the situation, do it. It’s important to know how to apologize with sincerity, and part of the sincerity of an apology is a willingness to put some action into it. If you broke trust, see what you can do to rebuild it. Whatever you can do to make things better, do it. (And if you’re not sure what would help, ask the women you work and live with what you can do to help them to feel better.)
Respect and Reaffirm Boundaries
One of the most important parts of an apology – one of the best reasons to apologize – is to reaffirm boundaries. Discussing what type of rules you both will adhere to in the future will rebuild trust, and positive feelings, and provides a natural segue out of the conflict, and into a happier future in the relationship.
I fear that this idea of apologizing to the women of the church is more like a utopian dream that will never happen. Five hundred years ago Martin Luther appealed to the church:
“…all Christians, and they alone, even women, are priests, without tonsure and episcopal character. For in baptizing we proffer the life-giving Word of God, which renews souls and redeems from death and sins…so when women baptize, they exercise the function of priesthood legitimately, and do not as a private act, but as a part of the public ministry of the church which belongs only to the priesthood” (AE 40:23).
“…we hold that this function, too, like the priesthood, belongs to all, and this we assert, not on our own authority, but that of Christ who at the Last Supper said, ‘do this in remembrance of Me’” (AE 40:24); .
It seems that many who are discussing here don’t understand the real issue. It seems there is a lack of understanding of how decisions are made in our worldwide church. It is about democracy, and more so, it is also about parlamentarism. In a majority of the democratic countries democracy is based on parlamentarism, and we have good reasons to be thankful for that. Parliamentarism basically means that the government cannot pass laws until they are approved by the parliament, the representatives of the people. Actually, it would be a real threat to democracy if a government would ignore the parliament. In the same way, ignoring the parliament of our church, the delegates at a General Conference session, would also be a threat to our democracy. The officers at the General conference office (our “government”) have no other mandate than to apply the decisions made by the delegates at a GC session (our “parliament”.) It’s not fair to say they are acting like Adolf Hitler or any other famous dictator. If we don’t agree with the decisions of the delegates, we can still spread our ideas as much as we can, till the next session. One day we may win, even if it will take some sessions.
I hope that those who have the power to do so will take steps to discipline Elder Wilson for his abuse of power, to wit: withholding the document from those who were to vote on it, accepting proxy votes to get the result he wanted when the document didn’t pass the committee the first time, and abusing his role as chair to influence the outcome. He shouldn’t be allowed to get away with such a flagrant abuse of power. If we do not take steps to reign in “kingly power” it will only increase. I’m sure he is sincere in his desire for the welfare of the church but he is sincerely wrong.
I am in agreement with Ted Wilson on the WO issue. It is an issue of headship not equality. Equality is usually a secular issue and most secular persons don’t understand or accept headship in the church. Keep up the good work Ted. You do have a lot of supporters who hold to the current / traditional view.