Women Serving God: A Study Guide

Does God invite women to fully participate in the assemblies of God?

My new book, Women Serving God, addresses this question. It is now available on Amazon in both Kindle ebook ($9.99) and print ($14.95).

In addition, I have produced a teaching/discussion study guide for the book designed for small groups or Bible classes.

Among churches of Christ, the voices of women are typically silent and excluded from visible leadership in assemblies gathered for prayer and praise. In this book, I tell the story of my own journey to understand how women have served God throughout the unfolding drama of Scripture. I describe my movement from the exclusion of the voices of women and their leadership in the assembly to a limited inclusion, and finally to the full inclusion of those voices and their leadership. Along the way, I describe some of the history of churches of Christ as well as my own history but ultimately focus on the meaning of biblical texts and how they support the full participation of women in the assemblies of God.

Three women, Claire Davidson Frederick, Jantrice Johnson, and Lauren Smelser White, respond to and extend John Mark’s thoughts.

John Mark is detailed, fair, and vulnerable about his own journey and our collective journey in Churches of Christ. I recommend John Mark as a trustworthy guide. Dr. Sara G. Barton, University Chaplain, Pepperdine University, Malibu, CA

Do we believe that the Holy Spirit equally equips both women and men to carry out Jesus’s message of reconciliation? Dr. Hicks is a trusted guide in navigating the depth of scripture and the complexity of our cultural moment. Drink deeply from this well! Dr. Joshua Graves, Otter Creek Church, Brentwood, Tennessee.

With characteristic depth, rigor, and generosity, Hicks offers his own journey toward embracing the inclusion of women’s voices in the assembly. Hicks writes with a familiarity of Restoration Movement history that few can boast, with an accompanying dedication to searching the scriptures. Amy McLaughlin-Sheasby, Instructor in the Department of Bible, Missions, and Ministry, Abilene Christian University.

This book is a gift to twenty-first century Churches of Christ. Part autobiography, part history, part exegesis, and part biblical theology, Hicks’s exploration of the Bible’s teachings on the role of women in congregational gatherings offers several invaluable components. Dr. James L. Gorman, Associate Professor of History, Johnson University

JOHN MARK HICKS is Professor of Theology at Lipscomb University in Nashville, TN. He has taught for thirty-nine years in schools associated with the churches of Christ. He has authored or co-authored eighteen books, lectured in twenty-two countries and forty states, and is married to Jennifer. They share five living children and six grandchildren.

10 Responses to “Women Serving God: A Study Guide”

  1.   Robert Says:

    Hello John Mark,

    I’m excited about your book. I really would like to know how you interpret Paul’s writings in light of the way of Judaism. I’m afraid that was then, this is now is not strong enough to turn me away from the way it was then. We do live in a different world that has elevated women to great status in secular society, however the lack of male headship (leadership) in the home vs. the rise in women’s headship (leadership) of the home is backwards and doesn’t work as well for the family unit. Show me a Christian family where this works and I will begin to open up to the words in your book. My thesis is this, there is no right or wrong here, only better & best. I currently believe the healthiest homes for man, woman & children are in a home with both parents believers, wife in submission to husband & husband being willing to give his life for his wife. This is the best way. I’m afraid your book will only help propagate a generation of girls who need a hammer to prove that their way is better.

    •   John Mark Hicks Says:

      Thanks for you comment. I don’t deal with the context of the home except only in tangential ways. I would suggest mutual submission myself, but that is another book.

      My interest is focused on the assembly and whether full participation in the assembly is open to them due to God’s giftedness. I affirm their full participation as I think Paul does as well. One would have to read the book to get the details, however. 🙂

      Peace, John Mark

    •   Bruce Morton Says:

      John Mark,
      I remain surprised that you do not see the foundational teaching of God’s Fatherhood in Paul’s teaching about both homes and churches. The patriarchal message certainly does not fit the U.S. in 2020, but neither did it fit the mixed religious leadership found in Greco-Roman religion — and specifically the mystery religions. It remains ironic to me that some churches are determined to become more and more like the very religious egalitarianism that the Spirit was guiding first century churches away from!

  2.   Darlene Gruwell Says:

    John Mark, I’m on my way to Amazon.com right now! I can’t wait to read this new book.

  3.   Terrell Lee Says:

    Glad to learn about this. I ordered a copy yesterday. Thanks.

  4.   Terrell Lee Says:

    I just completed pages 119-129 and found them to be extremely helpful. You incorporate so many thoughts in ways that brought fresh and exciting insights into the Genesis narrative about the male/female relationship. I suspect I’ll frequently find myself reading that section alone for quite some time. Thank you.

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