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I want to become a minister and want to go to college for this. What type of school should i enroll in and what path do I need to take. I have no idea where to begin. What type of education does it take and what should I expect. I have tried to find out how to go about this with no luck so far. - Mindy

According to scripture, women can minister in various ways. There is an example of women who supported the ministry of Jesus (Luke 8:2-3). There is the example of Tabitha in acts (Luke 9:36). There is the example of Priscilla who worked alongside her husband as a husband and wife team (Acts 18; Rom 16:3). There is the example of widows who were supported financially by the church if they had demonstrated godliness and kindness in a history of ministry (1 Tim 5:10). There is the example of women involved in prayer ministry (1 Cor 11:3). As for prophecy, it is a miraculous gift that has passed away, so the role of prophetess no longer applies (1 Cor 13:9-10). Miraculous gifts ceased after the first generation of Christians died.

The role of pastoring/elders is reserved for men who are the husband of one wife (1 Tim 3:2). Women can preach and teach to other women. See 1 Timothy 2:11-12 and Titus 2:4 for instructions on this.

The role of public preaching and teaching men is reserved for men. The principle behind this can be found in 1 Cor 11:3-16. God has distinct roles for both men and women. The difference is by God's design, and can even be seen in items of clothing they wear or do not wear, which symbolizes their place in God's design. Even when the role of prophetess was still active in the church, the prophetess had to wear a "symbol of authority" on her head, and obviously did not prophesy and preach publicly in the assemblies (1 Cor 14:34; 1 Tim 2:11-12). This is why there is no instruction or example of women being preachers or elders.

Within these guidelines set down by God in his word, you can minister. There are some good training programs specifically for women. I would recommend the Bible major program at Harding University in Searcy, Arkansas. Some women have become children's ministers. Others have gone through the nursing program along with a ministry training program and have gone into foreign medical missions as part of a missionary team. Some have become leaders of various types of women's ministries.

As you can see, I can only answer from what I believe to be the Biblical perspective, and not from a Methodist, Presbyterian, Pentecostal, etc. perspective. I would urge you to consider this from the Biblical perspective and not from a denominational tradition because God does not recognize denominationalism as it is a creation of man (1 Cor 1:10-13).

John Telgren
P.O. Box 452
Leavenworth, KS 66048
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