Ladies, Don’t Beat Your Pastors with the Rod of Titus 2

Ladies, Don’t Beat Your Pastors with the Rod of Titus 2

Pastors are not perfect….But they are not unaccountable. God is holding them to the charge of shepherding His flock, guarding them against unsound doctrine, and teaching them sound doctrine, so when you submit to your elders and pastors, you are submitting to the Lord.

There is a growing trend among women’s ministries in the church. It’s not new. Actually, it’s older than the flood. But it tends to re-circulate every now and then in different seasons with different costumes. At its worst, some might call it “Christian feminism.” At best, you’ll typically hear it as “only women should be leading women.” Its symptoms are a critical spirit, adverseness to pastoral guidance, insistence on the prominence of women, and inaccurate usage of Titus 2. All of this ends up creating disunity and demeaning the value and purpose Christ has for women in ministry. Sadly, Titus 2, which is full of wisdom and guidance, is being used as a weapon to chase pastors out of women’s ministry when in fact, Paul’s aim was the exact opposite.

What Was Paul Trying to Do?

When Paul wrote his letter to Titus, he states his purpose immediately: “This is why I left you in Crete, so that you might put what remained into order, and appoint elders in every town as I directed you” (1:5). What is Titus supposed to do in Crete? Make sure every local church has elders. Paul spends a lengthy chunk of Chapter 1 detailing the qualifications for elders (vv. 6-9), but then he specifically warns Titus of one of the main challenges and callings of an elder: teach the church sound doctrine and protect them from unsound doctrine.

Paul charges Titus that elders must guard the church. There is a vehemence and protectiveness in Paul’s instructions here—he is not messing around. This job is of utmost importance: “There are many who are insubordinate, empty talkers and deceivers…They must be silenced…” (Titus 1:10-11). Why the Godfather-esque language? Because these empty talkers and deceivers are leading people away from the gospel! And to make matters worse, they’re doing it as professing believers: “They profess to know God, but they deny him by their works. They are detestable, disobedient, unfit for any good work” (Titus 1:15-16). Paul is taking this seriously, and so also ought we. The role of the pastors and elders in your church is to protect your local body from false and unsound doctrine, which leads to turning away from God. Everything is at stake here, so do not grumble against your leaders as they strive to lead the church in sound doctrine.

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