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‘ve ainstay oF women in the church it « hotly debated topic in many circles today Unfortunately, the eectveness ofthe church thoughout history has been diminished because the ministry of women has been 50 limited. The intansigent 1d somtimes chauvinistic position of some in the church sa result of ong held steretypes about women, dysfunctional male-female relationships, and a tun ‘ated view fear chureh history uy purpore here is nether to put forth 3 comprehensive theological framework fox women in minisy nor to altempt an exegesis of the New Testament tes tht rolte othe ol oF women inthe church [My purpose iso cte some examples from church history and how women fan: ‘om in prophetic ministry atthe IHOP Missions Base, “The church in the End Times wl foursh ae both men and women receive pow ef dren and visions thet bring others to deeprltionshipa wth Jesus. In Acts 12718, we en plainly se that God intends to pour out Hie Spr on Hie sone and daughters, and they shall prophesy We wil ever be Fly eectivw if onehalf of God's amy is kept out ofthe bate against Satan's onslaught We need men and women beth to take their place boldly before Gods throne and function together with confidence and security inthe body of Christ. Together we can expevience the ptssionate love of God for ut and then use cur auth in onus to plunder the ingdom of datos incur gorration WOMEN THROUGHOUT CHURCH HISTORY ‘The signifcant vehement of women inthe inisty of Jesus is well documented Women were witnesses of Hi cucfion and resurrection when males were com spicuouly absent Luke declares that the women who had flloned Jesus fom alee stil followed along as Christ was carried to the tomb (Luke 2527-31), Mathew tl hw they kep watch over the seplche after the men had fed (Matt 276), John records that the group ef people immediately beneath the ross con sisted of three women and one man John 1925-27) Though it broke all kinds of socal and religious tations, Jesus made a point to include women in Mis Its lite wonder thatthe prominence of women continued inthe development ofthe erly church A numberof women served as leader in the house churches that were a part ofthe ager church nthe cy of Rome, Some of thoee mentioned se Priscila, Chloe, lydia, Appia, Nymphs the mother of John Mark and poss ‘the “lec lady" of ohn’ second epitle Paul mentions Phoebe and refers to her as a servant literal desconest' ofthe chutch in Cenchrea” (Rom. 96). Paul also talks about jnia, refering to her as being “outstanding among the apostes"(« 7. ma). Some have debated the erat meaning ofthis verse. Until the Midale Ages, the identty of Juia asa female apostle was unquestioned. Later teansloorsatempted to change the gender by changing the name to Junas.° Women functioned as prophetic ministers. Philip, who was as one ofthe seven men appointed othe administration of feding the poor (Acs 6), was head ofthe church in Caesarea. He had four virgin daughters who were recognized 35 ropheteses in the church (Acts 218-3). Some believe that these prophetesses ‘became the standard and model fer prophetic ministers inthe eal church When Pope Mitades prodaimed that two female followers of Montanus were hertcs, he contrasted them with Philip's daughter. Mitiades explained that their problem was not that they were women prophets (or this is what Philips dau ters were), but rather that they were false prophets, Eusebius mentions one ‘Quadratus, a man famous inthe second century. who "shared with the daughters of Philip the distinction of prophetic gf"? The church quicy spread fom its bihplce in Jerusalem into areas where the predominant culture wan pagan, Greco-Roman, or both n tse settings, women ‘commonly held high potions and influeee in oc, polis, and religious i es. The ida of women having 2 leading influence inthe church was therefore not thought of in negative terms. ‘About 4.0. 12, the Roman governor Pliny the Younger wrote about his efforts to deal withthe Christians in Bthynis, He Found #t necessary to interrogate the lead ofthe church two slave women clled mitra, of desconessee? “There ae countless examples of women who served the church with complete and teless devotion or whe, without inching, endured terible tortures and mar- ‘ardor. A significant step inthe process of Cvstinity’s gaining political and so- al dominance in Rome was the large number of female converts among the uppet as, Men were ls lialy to become Christians because doing 0 would cause them to lose ther status in society. The inordinate numberof upper class women is per haps the reason that Celestas, bishop of Rome in ao. 220, attempted to give women ofthe senatorial class an ecclesiastical sanction to marry slaves of feed “These highorn women seized the epprtuity to become students of the Word (One of there war 2 fouth-century woman named Marcll, The great scholar Jerome, who translated the Bible into Latin (known 25 the Vulgate. did not hesitate to refer church leaders to Marella for help in sohing their hermeneutic problems. ‘Women enjyed great feedom of expression inthe eaves days of the church However because various kinds of problems arose, the rial iedom and ib- ‘ery afforded them inthe church's ministry were replaced by 2 more precisely de fined code of conduc that was reactionary in ature, With each new and more de ‘tiled explanation of what wes and was not acceptable, the rol of women wa tte and diminished Nevertheless, even though the Middle Ages thre were women who wee ou standing eamples of spituslity and dedication The Waldersans, a group begin: ring in the twelfth century that could be described as Protestants four hundred years before the Reformation, were charged wit, among ther things, allowing ‘women to preach, Catherine of Sena (1347-880) was resale servant tothe oot a doctor ofthe church, anda lover of God whove theology and pity were revered even bythe Reformers ‘One summer when Joan of Are was about thiten, she suddenly saw a bight lah and heard voices while wrking inthe elds. The voles, which oan thought ‘were ether angels or saints, continued after that day, rode over thvee hundred mile acres enemy trary total the dauphin Charles of her plans ‘when Joan entered the large hal the dauphin had degused himel’ ae one of ‘thos inthe rod, oan walle ight upto hie and cessed br, “Lam not the dauphin” Chas replied Joan rexponded, "in God's name, gentle se, you ae” ‘Then she proceeded to reveal te him his pate thoughts. The nineteen year-old fH led the French forces and saved France, and Charles was restored to the ‘throne, Mark Twain studied the Ife of oan of rc for twelve years and concluded ‘that er fe wae “the most noble life that was ever born into the world save ony Ones ‘Thought is impossible dicer betwen legend, facts and spiritual anointing, Jam's prophatic experiences seem someuihat similar to other | know who have been called tothe prophet miity. Women have also played a significant role In the spread and development of Protertantism, patel inthe ares of foreign missions. nthe twentieth century ‘women began to emerge in ministy and leadership oles, fst inthe holiness churches and then sith the Pantcostals. The examples are numerous, the tHe most notable being Ammer Semple McPherson, the funder ofthe Intemational ‘Church of the Foursquare Gospel, ad Kany Kuhlman, David Yong Cho has rlsed women nto ministry and eederthip postions in ‘the Yodo Full oxpel Church n Seoul, South Kore, and with thei help has but ‘the words anges church wth more than thee quarters ofa millon members. WOMEN'S MINISTRY ATTHEIHOP MISSIONS BASE ‘We have had a numberof women in our mide iho have mde profound, sec tat, and eaifing contribution to our prophetic mini. While much ofthis has bean behind thescenes sevice to our leadership tea, we ate enthusiastic about ‘women moving inthe prophetic aren, The limits and extent of « woman's function ‘om the prophetic team ar the same as those ofa man. We do nat gh prophet people a prominent publ platform-—men or women. We have 2 growing number of women who are anointed to speak the Word