Question 651

By: Robert Serreyn

Question: Is Acts 21:9 suggesting that women can be preachers since the word prophesy in the greek means “Preach”?

(Act 21:8,9)  And the next day we that were of Paul’s company departed, and came unto Caesarea: and we entered into the house of Philip the evangelist, which was one of the seven; and abode with him. (9)  And the same man had four daughters, virgins, which did prophesy.

Answer: You are correct, the word Prophesy does mean “Preach”, but Acts 21:9 IS NOT advocating “Women Preachers”.

God is not the author of confusion, In 1 Corinthians 14:33 scripture states… For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints. 

He would not declare something thing in one verse than say some thing different in another.

The word “PREACH” can be rendered in two different ways.

In 1 Peter 5:2 pastor’ws are told to “Feed the Flock” with the Word of God…

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;

In 2 Timothy 4:2 pastors’s are told to “Preach the Word”

Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.

In this case the word PREACH means exactly that… To Preach.

In another example, in Mark 16:20, the word PREACH here means to Witness or Share the Gospel

And they went forth, and preached(to witness or share the gospel) every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen.

Therefore the understanding is to Witness or Share the Gospel.

It is very important to compare verse with other verses that relate to the verse in question which so happens to be 1 Timothy 3:1-5 for Acts 21:9 in this case.

This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work.  (2)  A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach; (3)  Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous; (4)  One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; (5)  (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?).

As we see from these verses a pastor,preacher (Bishop) must be a man NOT a woman. Take note what verses 1 through 5 says.

– If a man.

– The husband of one wife (it’s hard to be a husband of one wife if your a woman).

– Ruleth well his house.

– How shall he take care of the church.

Verses 1 through 5 plainly state that A MAN can be a pastor, preacher NOT the woman, so we must come to the conclusion that the word prophesy in Acts 21:9 must mean to share or witness to the lost since their father Philip was a evangelist.


Preachers that are not careful to compare scripture with scripture WILL FALL into the sand trap of teachig a false doctrine that is contrary to scripture.

Many churches, and large religious organizations that promote, endorse, and have women as preachers use this verse and claim a woman can be a pastor/preacher, but as we see from 1 Timothy 3:1-5 this not so.

The MOST IMPORTANT thing to know IS Jesus Christ as YOUR savior, just simply believe that Jesus Christ went to the cross and DIED and shed his blood, was BURIED and three days later RESURRECTED from the dead to pay for your sins – See 1 Cor. 15:1-4.

Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved – Acts 16:31

The moment that you do, YOU HAVE (at that second and forever) Everlasting Life which WILL NEVER be taken away no matter what.

John 10:28-29 And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. (29) My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand.

-Christ DIED for you – Romans 5:8

-Christ PAID your sins in full – 2 Corinthians 5:21,1 Peter 2:24

BELIEVE (Trust In Completely) in Christ ALONE as the complete payment of sin for salvation – John 3:16, Acts 16:31, Ephesians 2:8,9

“For the wages(payment) of sin is death (eternal torment in hell); but the GIFT(salvation) of God is eternal life THROUGH Jesus Christ our Lord”. Romans 6:23