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Cultural Expression or Scriptural Truth



Date: Sun, 14 Sep 1997
From: "Julio B. Scaramastro" <>
To: F.B.

Dear F. B.,

Allow me to apologize for taking so long to get around to examining the two letters that you asked me to look at. First, the letter sent to "Dr. H."
I agree with the point that it is wrong to ordain "women as pastors and church leaders." In addition, I do not believe in ordaining anyone to anything. The current concept of a separate class of people known as the clergy is unscriptural. The word clergy comes from the Greek word KLEROS and is used of those who belong to God in general. Consider its use in the following passages:
"To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and INHERITANCE among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me." (Acts 26:18, KJV).

Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the INHERITANCE of the saints in light:" (Colossians 1: 12, KJV).

Vs 2: "Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;
Verse 3: Neither as being lords over God's HERITAGE, but being ensamples to the flock." (I Peter 5:2-3, KJV).

Much more can be said on this subject, but this tiny sample will suffice for now.

Dr. H. has a major problem when he permits current "cultural expression" to set aside "the Holy Scriptures." Scriptural truth is an absolute and is not subject to change for any reason. God says in Mal. 3:6:
"For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed." (Malachi 3:6, KJV).

Again in James 1: 17:
"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning." (James 1: 17, KJV).

Again in Psalms 89:34:
"My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips." (Psalms 89:34, KJV).

Again in Psalms 102:26-27:
26: They shall perish, but thou shalt endure: yea, all of them shall wax old like a garment; as a vesture shalt thou change them, and they shall be changed:
27: But thou art the same, and thy years shall have no end."
(Psalms 102:26-27, KJV).

The same is true of the Lord Jesus Christ and we are clearly told this in Heb. 13:8:
"Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever." (Hebrews 13:8, KJV).

Furthermore, in Prov. 24:2 1, we are told not to meddle with those who change:
"My son, fear thou the LORD and the king: and meddle not with them that are given to change:" (Proverbs 24:21, KJV).

Of course, last but not least, in Heb. 1: 12:
"And as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed: but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail." (Hebrews 1: 12, KJV).

Approaching this statement from another angle the Scriptures teach:
"Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you." (Deuteronomy 4:2, KJV).

18 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:
19 And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.
(Revelation 22:18-19, KJV).

With the above warnings against altering God's Word in any way, we are given the following positive statement about what it, and it alone, can do for us in 2 Timothy 3:15-17:
15 And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.
16 ALL scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
17 That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works. (2 Timothy 3:15-17, KJV).

Hence, from all the above, we can see that as we can put confidence in Yahweh, since He is not fickle and changing, we can put confidence in His Word because it does not change. Absolute Truth from an Absolute Being is always true absolutely. It is because people do not understand this that we have so many varieties of religious beliefs. Unfortunately for them, the above passages teach that they are wrong if they think they are going to reap the rewards offered freely in the Scriptures.

I believe that you have a correct explanation of 1 Cor. 11: 10 in the item that you found on our website. Paul's presentation is based on the opening record in Genesis. Therefore, any explanation should be firmly founded on this record. Explanations should not be founded on "could very well be's" or "may imply's." Such reasoning is called guesswork which may or may not be sound. It is not felt that your reasoning here is sound. Let us look at this reasoning briefly.
Eph. 6:12 is simply stating that Paul and the brethren were not in physical combat trying to preach the gospel message but mental combat with the civil and religious powers that be of the political heavens. We see him actively involved in this process in the book of Acts. Now, note what Paul says in 2 Cor. 10:2-6:

2 But I beseech you, that I may not be bold when I am present with that confidence, wherewith I think to be bold against some, which think of us as if we walked according to the flesh.

3 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh:

4 (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)

5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;

6 And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.

(2 Corinthians 10:2-6, KJV)-
In the Scriptures there are only good angels. There is never a presentation of God's angels gone bad. This theory is a pagan concept completely foreign to the Scriptures. Trying to simplify my argument here consider the following passages and thoughts:
34 And Jesus answering said unto them, The children of this world marry, and are given in marriage: 35 But they which shall be accounted worthy to obtain that world, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry, nor are given in marriage: 36 Neither can they die any more: for they are equal unto the angels; and are the children of God, being the children of the resurrection. (Luke 20:34-36, KJV).

23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. (Romans 6:23, KJV)

From these two passages it is obvious that the angels can not sin for if they were sinning they would have to die which it clearly indicates they can not do. More can be said but this is sufficient to establish our point.

Now while I agree with your explanation that women's heads should be covered when praying or prophesying, your use of Isa. 6:2 and Ezek. 1: 11,23 is incorrect. Both of these passages have nothing to do with angels. They are symbolical passages that need to be explained in harmony with all the Scriptures that literally explain each part of the symbols. Briefly, without going into details, they are representations of glorified saints in conjunction with the Lord Jesus Christ in a future role after His return and in conjunction with the establishment of the Kingdom on this earth. If you want to pursue this further, then we can do this on another occasion.

In general, I found your letter very interesting and well set out. Your position with respect to women is very sound. It is also accurate with respect to the immoral perversion of homosexuality. It is interesting to notice that when error is introduced in one area it leads to the introduction of error in other areas. This observation is always true! A prime example of this can be found in the departure from the teachings of the Apostles that led to the development of the Catholic Church.

Now on to your letter to "T." It is a very well done letter. However, I would like to point out a few things to you.

Firstly, your point No. 3 is not provable from the Scriptures. The citing of I Tim. 2:14 only proves that she was the first to fail, not that she was more vulnerable.
Secondly, you are way too generous when you say to her, "You were also right in questioning if 'my' church had the right to interpret scripture." The Scriptures teach that it is our responsibility to, "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth." (2 Timothy 2:15, KJV).

15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: 16 Having a good conscience; that, whereas they speak evil of you, as of evildoers, they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good conversation in Christ. (I Peter 3:15-16, KJV).

3 Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand. (Revelation 1:3, KJV).

The Bereans were commended for carrying out the above:
11 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.

12 Therefore many of them believed; also of honourable women which were Greeks, and of men, not a few. (Acts 17:11-12, KJV).

Again, passages can be accumulated to show the wrongness of her position and a basic misunderstanding of the fact that we are all expected to study God's Words to find out what He has to say to us. After all, it is the only book in which He is specifically speaking to us. Any other book is the words of men which may or may not represent God's truths. It is quite clear that no one has a monopoly on the reading, studying and interpreting of the Scriptures. Historically, when men believed this they tortured and killed anyone who disagreed with them. Thank God this is not likely to happen anywhere in the English speaking countries of the world.

This letter has gotten longer than it was ever intended to be inspite of a great effort to keep it brief. Therefore, we will call it quites for now, recognizing that more can be presented if you so desire in the future.
Julio B. Scaramastro