Saturday, June 30, 2012


Dr. Couch, did the early church have deaconesses?

ANSWER: The earliest of the churches followed the NT which does not call for deaconesses. The word diaconnas means servant. So there were women who did things for carrying out the ministry of the church but there were no deaconesses officially in the congregation. However around the third century some churches began to form deaconess boards, but in the west, in the Latin churches this ended around AD 441. In the Greek orthodox churches it ended around the 12th century.

The churches began to have problems with the women who wanted to lead the men. This is happening today with the liberal churches. Women are not to lead men. However in some conservative seminaries today (with some in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area) they are supposedly training women “to be leaders.”

In the church Council of Orange around the fifth century they banned women from being officially deaconesses. It was not biblical nor was it working! Women who want to be elders/pastors are foolish and are stepping out of their key roles as wives and mothers. Yes, women can help around the church to help serve or clean up the church but this is not an official position. It is women who think they are “men.”And they are not! Can you believe what is happening in our military! Some women are taking our military to court because they won't let the women go into combat. Can you imagine the men who think it is ok to place women into harms way! It is now acceptable to allow the women to defend the men! It is ok to kill wives and mothers on the front lines. Women are 50% less physically capable of doing what men do. They have only 50% upper body strength and have only 50% stamina that men have. So it is a social agenda and a social argument that wishes to place them where only men are supposed to go!

Some women who are very ignorant try to use Romans 16: 1-2 to argue that there were women deaconesses in the early church are just plain wrong. The passage says that the church was to receive Phoebe “who was a servant (deaconess) of the church at Cenchrea.” But then it says she was to be received “in the Lord in a manner worthy of the saints, and that you help her in whatever matter she may have need of you; for she herself has also been a helper of many, and of myself as well.”

She was to be accepted as an ordinary “saint” or church member, not as one in a special role of a formal deaconess. She certainly did have a ministry, and she must have traveled about doing special spiritual work but this does not mean she was formally a deacon of an assembly.

Think carefully when you read a passage of Scripture! Don't read into it what is not there. Some women have a hidden ambition to rule over men and to take their positions.

Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch (6/11)

Friday, June 29, 2012

The Location of the Real Tabernacle

Dr. Couch, is the real tabernacle in heaven?

ANSWER: The most used word for tabernacle (or tent) is skeenee. It is used eleven times in the book of Hebrews. There it is called the “true,” the “first” in importance, “the holiest of all,” the “perfect.” In 8:2 we read “the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched and not man.” Verse 1 reads “the main point in what has been said is this: we have such a high priest [now], who has taken His seat at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens.” “At the right hand of the throne” is quoting Psalm 110:1-2. This is where Christ is now!

Is this tabernacle real? When we get to heaven will we have a “real” body? Yes, but it is not of this same physical we now possess. It will be real but it will also be eternal. The heavenly tabernacle is real but it is not of the same material that the wooden tabernacle was made of. The tabernacle in the wilderness was limited. It was patterned after the heavenly. But it was a place where the offerings were made representing Christ. The tabernacle in heaven represents Christ and His offering for sin, though He will be there in glory. The heavenly tabernacle but represents that great work He performed when here on earth. It is where God meets with man that brings about a redemption for believers.

Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch (6/12)

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

“To be IN Christ”

Dr. Couch, what does it mean “To be IN Christ?”

ANSWER: The Greek preposition IN (en, “to be in [en] Christ”) is used in Paul's letters 164 times. And the same expression is used by John in the Upper Room Discourse 12 times. This expression is real but it is also a mystical expression that may be difficult to fully describe. The great Greek scholar Deissmann says this of the preposition en and the expression “To be in Christ”:

There cannot be any doubt that “Christ in me” means the exalted Christ living in Paul … and Paul in Christ. Christ, the exalted Christ is Spirit. Therefore, He can live in Paul and Paul in Him.” A. T. Robertson adds: “This mystic relation is likened to the air that is in us and yet we are in it.”

Thanks for asking.
 -- Dr. Mal Couch (6/12)