There are many Christians that will say that women should not be leaders in the church. It seems that there is a wide range of what the local bodies of believers will allow women to do in the church.
In many cases, various scriptures are quoted such as 2 Ti. 2:11-15 and women can do nothing in the church. In others, 1 Co. 14:34 & 35 is quoted and the women are not even allowed to speak. Some local bodies quote Romans 16:1 & 2 and use that scripture to allow women to serve (be a deaconess). In many cases, these same congregations limit the women to certain areas of service.
A closer look at scripture might shed some light on this subject. If we look in Paul’s letter to the Galatians (3:25-28), we see him explaining that we are no longer under the law. Paul explains that, in Christ, we find salvation and that salvation is the same for all. He further explains that, through that salvation, we are all sons of God. If we can agree that all of us receive the same salvation, then we can proceed to look at what that means.
In Acts 2:38 and elsewhere in scripture, we are told that, if we are children of God then we will be given the gift of the Holy Spirit. In 1 Corinthians 12:13, we are told that there is one Spirit and that we are of one body. In Galatians 5:22 & 23, we are given a list of “fruit of the Spirit” so that we are able to tell if someone has that Spirit.
All of this leads to one question and that question, to any congregation, is “who is leading the church?” If you say that God is leading the church, more than likely, you will probably say that God leads the church through the Holy Spirit. If you agree with that, then maybe you will see that, since we already saw how there is only one Spirit and it is given to both male and female, women should be able to have a leadership role in the church. If you do not agree with the statement that God is leading the local church, through the Holy Spirit, then that leads back to our original question. In that case you must admit that it is men leading the church. If that is the case, you must also realize that men can make mistakes but God does not. Usually, when men are in control, that leads to a bunch of rules and those rules can vary and change as needed.
A final thought takes us back to the Old Testament and the book of Judges. In Judges Chapter 4, we see that Deborah was leading Israel. (Some versions use the word judging in place of leading.) It even goes on to say that she held court to settle disputes among the people. We must admit that the Israelites were the chosen people of God. We also see from this scripture that Deborah not only led the people but she did so through a very difficult time. We see that she proclaimed the word of God (in verses 6 & 7) and that she led the people to victory. We further see, at the end of Chapter 5, that under Deborah’s leadership, the land had peace for forty years.
Therefore, if a woman could lead Israel, how is it that some can say that women cannot even lead a local congregation of God’s people?
Another example of where God used women to lead His people can be found in Acts 21:9 where we see that there were four women prophets in the city of Caesarea. Since God had made them prophets, should we judge whether He will use women in other roles in His church.