For some reason, the Southern Baptist Convention has a pastor who directs his church to hire female pastors for his support staff, and he hasn’t been disfellowshipped yet. One would think the SBC “credentials committee” would look into that. But after his recent attempt at defending female pastors from the Bible, the committee might want to consider disfellowshipping Wade Burleson on grounds of Biblical illiteracy alone.
Seth Dunn wrote about Wade Burleson – an outspoken feminist and liberal activist within the SBC – yesterday, asking why he was allowed to be in the Southern Baptist Convention when he is in clear opposition to the Baptist Faith and Message.
Burleson doubled and tripled down on his anti-Baptist claims regarding female clergy with a jaw-dropping theological #fail.
Burleson said, “We define Pastor as ‘Servant.’ If I defined Pastor as you seem to define it – “One with authority over others” – then we would not have men or women pastors. That’s an unbiblical definition of pastor. Bring…it…on! :)”
And all God’s people said…what is he talking about?
Burleson confuses the two offices of the church according to the Bible (and according to the Baptist Faith and Message, Article VI). To quote the Baptist faith statement…
Its scriptural officers are pastors and deacons. While both men and women are gifted for service in the church, the office of pastor is limited to men as qualified by Scripture.
The Bible defines a deacon as a servant. The word is
διάκονος, which is listed in the Strong’s Concordance as StrongsG1249 and means “servant.”
However, the office of elder or ἐπίσκοπο – often called “pastor” in Baptist tradition but used synonymously with bishop, overseer, steward, presbyter, or shepherd – means “ruler.” It’s StrongsG1985 in the concordance.
The Scripture is abundantly clear that pastors have ruling authority.
Speaking of pastors, in Hebrews 13:7 the author writes…
“Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account.”
How does a Southern Baptist pastor not know this? Is he serious?
There is simply no rational, Biblical, or coherent argument to be made for the inclusion of female pastors. When people attempt to defend the practice from Scripture, they end up making embarrassing blunders like this.
This is why ultimately – each and every single time – churches that embrace female clergy eventually deny the inerrancy of Scripture. Without a Scriptural defense for the practice, they end up denying the truthfulness of Scripture altogether.