Question:

I recently worshiped at a congregation where they allowed women to assist in serving the communion. The women stood alongside the men in front of the congregation while one man read Scriptures and prayed, then the women helped to serve communion with the men. Is this in violation of I Timothy 2:12 or any other teachings about the role of women in worship?


Answer:

The two main passages generally cited are "A woman must quietly receive instruction with entire submissiveness. But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet" (I Timothy 2:11-12) and "Let your women keep silent in the churches, for they are not permitted to speak; but they are to be submissive, as the law also says. And if they want to learn something, let them ask their own husbands at home; for it is shameful for women to speak in church" (I Corinthians 14:34-35).

In many congregations those serving on the Lord's table also give a short talk and lead prayers. It is for this reason that men are used to serve the Lord's Supper. In this particular case the women did not speak or acted in any way that showed them to have authority over men. Therefore, what was done was not in violation of the Scriptures.

We must be careful not to add rules where God did not.

Thank you!