For sometime now I’ve been rethinking this whole business of women preachers, you know, women in ministry. After reading Rod of Alexandria’s latest piece on Julia Foote, whose contribution some would consider “proto- black feminist or proto- womanist theology,” I was compelled to revisit the matter.
She was excommunicated from her church for claiming that the Triune God had called a mere woman to be a preacher. On the position of women preaching in the church, Julia looks to Joel 2:28 & 29, and she understands Paul in 1st Corinthians as recognizing women who prophesy [11:5]. She is what I would call an continuationist, that the work of the Holy Spirit is continually at work at all time, and has never ceased. This begins with the Breathe of YHWH concept in the Hebrew bible and in the continuing story of God’s redeeming of creation, the Holy Spirit anoints women and men to share the Gospel, God’s Victory Speech that God’s Son overcame sin. Foote did not need ordination credentials from an institution (like the one headed by Richard Allen– the African Methodist Episcopal church) since God had chosen her. Remember, it’s is God who elects, and who can accuse God’s elect (Romans 8)? read more…, bold added
As I said in a recent post, reflecting on 1 Corinthians 11:5, a passage that Rod has alluded to in the above quote, the breath of God has also blown on women. Paul understood this. The early church understood this. That differences still remained in the early church is evident from the New Testament.
But this is the New Creation we’re talking about. Something has taken place. The Holy Spirit has indeed been poured out.
Or we can simply conclude that Julia Foote was beside herself to claim that the Triune God had called her to be a preacher.