Manly man and open-air evangelist Tony Miano, shares words of wisdom to women on blogging, speaking, preaching, and teaching.
— Tony Miano (@TonyMiano) November 7, 2013
Open-air street evangelist, Tony Miano, has been the recipient of correspondence from Christian women after his book, Should She Preach, was published. In a recent blog post, he stated that some women asked in a “sincere and thoughtful way,” while others asked with “venom in their words, ready for a fight.”
He then conceded that sometimes Christians can behave as badly as unbelievers in their online communications and readily admits that he has been guilty as charged, too.
He seems to be very concerned about women and how they conduct themselves verbally and otherwise. (I’ve split up the excerpt for easier reading.)
As a result of my book, I’ve found myself on the receiving end of some very nasty comments by Christian women on blogs, Facebook, Twitter, and via email. In each instance, the professing Christian woman acts and talks as if she were asking me to “step outside.”
In each instance, the woman acted and talked like an angry man–asserting authority she does not have, boisterously making demands and proclamations and, with no sense of biblical propriety and in mixed online company, throwing her weight around as a teacher–weight the Lord has not given her.
And just so there is not mistake; just so there is no ambiguity seen in my position; I believe such behavior among Christian women is masculine, unbiblical, sinful, and embarrassing. Such behavior is untoward, unattractive, unflattering, and ungodly.
Such behavior violates God’s created order and design for women, violates a woman’s role in the Body of Christ, and flies in the face of the gentle and quiet spirit God has intended for all women–certainly His redeemed, born-again, adopted daughters.
Miano then shared that he had received an e-mail from a college student who “ascribes to what the Bible teaches regarding the limitations placed upon women in the areas of preaching/teaching and exercising authority over men.” The gist of the e-mail is the young lady wanted to have a clearer understanding of what was biblically acceptable for her to say on her blog with regard to conversations with men who had commented.
A few times, men have commented on the journals (usually atheists) and I have gotten into long debates with them on the subjects. I don’t seek out these conversations, they simply post on the journal and I reply.
My question is, do these journal postings and/or subsequent one-on-one conversations qualify as teaching/preaching? If so, should I delete my previous journals, or should I simply stop making them? Finally, if this is preaching/teaching, do you know of any other ways I can evangelize online while staying in the will of God?
Here is part of Miano’s reply:
Thank you for contacting me. I hope your studies are going well.
You ask a very good question. And I’m very glad to hear you hold to a biblical understanding of a woman’s role in the Body of Christ regarding teaching and the exercise of authority over men.
I do not believe that writing a public journal, in which you express your Christian beliefs and your theological thoughts about the same rises to the level of teaching and/or exercising authority over men.
Now, with that said, writing about the truths of Scripture certainly is teaching Scripture. There’s no way around that. When we communicate biblical truth, we are teaching biblical truth. However, the onus for the teaching, in the case of written material, is upon the recipient and not the writer. What I mean by that is it is the responsibility of men to avoid sitting under your teaching. It is the responsibility of Christian men not to put themselves under the authority of your teaching.
Hey now – – – wait just one cotton-pickin’ minute. Do you remember this: Question for Tony Miano: Did Joni Preach? It sure looks like he didn’t heed his own words when he heard Joni Eareckson Tada “teach” scripture at the Strange Fire conference. He even wrote a whole post trying to convince everyone she wasn’t preaching/teaching:
Did I listen to Joni speak? Yes, I drank in every word as if they were sips from a cool glass of water. I am blessed every time I listen to Joni speak. She is a wonderful example of biblical womanhood and a true encouragement. I listened to Joni speak during the Strange Fire conference without so much as a twinge of discomfort, apprehension, compromise, or hypocrisy. (Source)
Whatever, Tony, we see how it works. If whatever she is teaching lines up with your beliefs, then you’ll listen to a woman teaching, but if it’s someone like Joyce Meyer, then look at the insulting words he uses:
“She carries herself like a man, sounds like a man, and preaches like a man.”
Going back to Miano’s correspondence with the young lady:
While it is not unbiblical for you to engage men in evangelistic conversations, you will have to decide if, in doing so, you are sacrificing any of your femininity in the process. In other words, you will have to determine if you are sounding like a man in your correspondence. One of the three reasons women should not open-air preach, teach men, or exercise authority over men, which I explain in my book, is that a woman cannot help but to sound and act like a man in the process, thus sacrificing some of her beautiful, God-given femininity.
This is the best part. Miano then gives words of advice to Christian women bloggers:
It might be wise for Christian women bloggers to give some written indication on their blog that their primary audience, if their blog is directed toward the Christian community, is Christian women. This might help fend off unwanted, unbelieving men from posting comments, and it might help in rightly discouraging Christian men from placing themselves under the teaching of a Christian woman.
Uh-oh, I have not done this. I hope I have not caused any of my men readers to stumble.
Just so there is no confusion or misinterpretation of my words, I will close with this. I am not suggesting all Christian women should abandon their blogs. I am not suggesting all Christian women should flee from social media. Christian women, like Christian men, have much to say. And I’m all for Christian women saying it–so long as they communicate in a biblical manner. So, to my blogging sisters in Christ, keep blogging. Keep blogging, so long as you do so while maintaining God’s intended order, your role in the Bride of Christ, and your God-designed, God-intended, beautiful femininity. (Source)