As found in the Roman Catholic Church, Southern Baptist Convention, and many other denominations women are still treated as second-class citizens. There are churches in America and abroad in which women aren't allowed to speak out loud unless they get permission from a man first. There are several churches in which women aren't permitted to preach from the pulpit.
A recently written book, "Resignation of Eve" by evangelical minister Jim Henderson argues that unless the male leaders of conservative Christian churches do some serious soul-searching-pronto, the women who have always sustained those churches with their times, sweat and cash will leave. In droves. And they won't come back. This is because women of faith are increasingly breadwinners, single moms and head of households and their children, traditionally brought to church by them, will thus join the growing number of Americans who call themselves "un-churched."
There is a natural, and deliberate movement by women of the church to challenge the system of sexism and collectively demand that their gifts not be ignored any longer. Women are proclaiming that God has called brave dames like Deborah as recorded by the book of Judges to be bold and relevant leaders for such a time as this. Deborah was nobody's victim, she makes Xena the Warrior Princess look like Lady Gaga. Although, she lived more than 3,000 years ago, Deborah was the quintessential modern woman. She was a wife, a judge (one of 12 in Israel) and "a prophetess." Against 900 iron chariots and a powerful general named Sisera, she took action. At Barak's request, Deborah went to Mount Tabor with the troops and with God's help, they defeated the Canaanites.
The woman had backbone. She was nobody's trophy. In fact, she picked up the trophy for God in her celebration and praise of victory amid adversity. Women like Deborah, it is time to resign the position of being Eve in that all biblical women spent their time turning men on to sin? Using their feminine wiles to trick ditsy male relatives? Being silenced, humiliated, traded and man handled? God is looking for a few brave dames, like Deborah. Their judgment inspires. Their wisdom springs from a tight relationship with the Holy. And at the end of the day, they sing full-throated victory anthems, not about roaring human complacency, but about thundering Holiness.
Follow Reverend William E. Flippin, Jr. on Twitter: www.twitter.com/pastorbilljr