Sunday, May 25, 2008

Holy Bible Window

Today is Sunday......I don't know what its traditional label is......perhaps, The Sunday After Trinity. Anyway, here's a stained-glass window from my church in honor of today, whatever today may be:

It simply, or profoundly, depicts the Bible, that which Christians view as God's Word.

How to read and use God's Word varies amongst Christian denominations, I think. Some, such as my confessional Lutheran church, place very high importance on the Word of God from the Bible, when SPOKEN by an ordained minister, who must be a male.

A few years ago, at a Ladies Aid meeting, our pastor's wife was giving a presentation to our group of ladies. Her husband, the pastor, was there, also, in the audience. Near the end of her talk, she mentioned a Psalm which was her favorite, and said she was going to read it to us. She opened her Bible and started to read, but then looked up and said, "Oh, I'd better let Pastor read this to you."

It was an interesting, enlightening little moment for me. The true orthodox Lutheran belief would be that a woman should not be reading aloud from God's Word if a man is present. I Timothy 2:12 is the scripture passage used to support this. (I always wish the pastors would read on and explain I Timothy 2:15, but they never do!)

Right then, I had to fight and defeat a rebellious urge to stand up and say to her, "No.......this is your go right ahead and read this Bible passage to us."


Pat - Arkansas said...

In our also liturgical denomination, today is the Second Sunday after Pentecost. Thanks for sharing another beautiful stained glass window.

Anonymous said...

So often your posts articulate issues that have been churning in my brain. This is one to be sure.
Now here's one to make you feel very superior to us: last night I told my husband I wasn't sure where Iowa was in relation to Minnesota. And then, my nicely educated, businessman husband said, "Well, doesn't it border Utah?" Needless to say, we're looking at a map today!

Jeannelle said...


Thank you for the info on this Sunday's designation! Yes, the windows are lovely, and the colors photograph well.



That is hilarious! Funny how we're all rather ignorant of areas outside of our own.

As for the women-speaking-in-church issue: I really think the pastor's wife in the post should have went ahead and read the Bible passage, since she was speaking to a ladies' group. I do know that her husband, although a very nice guy, was very orthodox in his doctrinal views, so maybe she knew he wouldn't approve of her reading it with him present.

Some of the LCMS pastors are like that, and some are not. Oddly enough, its the younger pastors nowadays who are more orthodox, because that's what's being promoted at the seminary. Some of them don't even approve of women being allowed to vote in the local church assembly. I think that goes a bit far. Not all the LCMS churches are like that, though.

rhymeswithplague said...

Hi, Jeannelle! I think you mean I Timothy chapter 2, not chapter 1.

I had a relative who often acted in crude, unloving, and downright wicked ways who believed that because she was the mother of four children her eternal destiny was secure, that she would go to heaven when she died. I do not think for a minute think that is what St. Paul meant in I Tim. 2:15. One pastor taught us that each woman from Eve forward could possibly have been the mother of the Messiah, who was going to be the fulfillment of God's promise to Eve about the "seed of the woman" in Genesis 3, and this would prompt her to trust God and live in a godly fashion. I don't know if that's what St. Paul meant, either. But it is interesting to contemplate.

Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

Jeanelle, my mouth just dropped open. I didn't know people still took it that far. I should add that I do not hold that view at all and, in fact, attend a church whose priests are a wife and a husband. And the wife is generally recognized as being the superior teacher.

I actually hate that passage in Timothy because the way many people interpret it implies that women are so damaged by Eve's sin that they are beyond God's power to redeem them completely and make them worthy of full participation in the church. That is not my view at all. Actually, I think Paul was making a concession to the patriarchal Roman culture of the time.

As for the childbearing verse, I think I've heard that it was a promise that even if a woman dies in childbirth, that isn't a sign that she was cursed by God or lost her salvation. (Remember how superstitious people were then.) But I could be remembering that wrong.

Jeannelle said...


Thank you for pointing that should be chapter 2!! I'm going to edit it.


Thank you for your comment. I'm with you.

Anonymous said...

That is such a gorgeous stained glass window. Isn't there something so moving and special about stained glass windows?

Jeannelle said...


Yes, I love stained glass, and these windows photograph so nicely.