On: February 9, 2015 | By: admin | Under: Blog | Comments: Comments are off
After this, Jesus travelled about from one town and village to another, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom of God. The Twelve were with him, and also some women who had been cured of evil spirits and diseases: Mary (called Magdalene) from whom seven demons had come out; Joanna the wife of Chuza, the manager of Herod’s household; Susanna; and many others. These women were helping to support them out of their own means. Luke 8:1-3
In the 21st Century West, we lose much of the radicalness of Jesus’ frequent interaction with women. If memory serves me correct, not only were women very much second class citizens, they didn’t get a look in with the religious establishment. A glance around many contemporary world cultures indicates that the inclusiveness Jesus adopted has not been taken up universally.
Our story has twelve men carrying out the role of apostles and a group of women supporting them financially (and, I imagine, through prayer and other everyday provision such as food and clothing). Equally essential in enabling God’s work to be executed, but different.
This is no place to consider the role of women in today’s church, but it does bring into focus the fact that God’s people are bestowed with many different gifts, all of which are important. The apostle Paul: “there should be no division in the body … its parts should have equal concern for each other.” (1 Corinthians 12:25) I wonder if the gender arguments that swirl around in the church and elsewhere would become so entrenched if the issue at stake was suitability for role rather than its importance?
Are the eyes more important than the feet? … is a bishop more important than a Sunday school teacher … or a coffee server … ?
Father God, expose my prejudices and reveal to me how You see things, that I might act and, if necessary, change accordingly. Amen