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1/04/2009

EARLY WOMEN IN MINISTRY

Exodus 38:8 (KJV)
"And he made lavers of brass, and the foot of it brass of the lookingglasses of the women assembled at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation." Other translations clarify this to read "mirrors of the women who served at the entrance to the tent of meeting." (New Interpreter's Study Bible, Abingdon, 2003). From what we know from the evidence of Miriam's entry into the "tabernacle of the congregation"(*) with the Lord and Huldah's presence in and around the temple, these too may have been prophets to whom the people went for instruction or a "word from the Lord".


(*) Numbers 12.4-5. Note that although Miriam and Aaron complain because of the marriage of Moses to another woman. God called out to Moses, Miriam, and Aaron..."Come out ye three unto the tabernacle of the congregation. And they three came out. And the Lord came down in the pillar of the cloud, and stood in the door of the taberncale....." God then affirms that it is God who calls the prophet and gives the prophet their directions, often through, through visions and dreams. This section is not about condemning Miriam - for being a prophet as some suggest -but in a disciplinary action so that the difference between the intimate relationship being modeled between God and Moses could be fully realized. The formation of the Priesthood and the Laws would be the means of instructing the people and the prophets would be there to instruct and call to repentence. For Christians this is a foreshadow of the relationship made possible through Jesus Christ. In Galatians 3:21-25 this is made clear by the Apostle Paul: " Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, ...righteousness should have been by the law....But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed.Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith." (KJV).

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