It's clear that all [men and women] are given gifts to be used for the good of the Body of Christ. It is also apparent that some women did this exceptionally well in the New Testament. [See Romans 16:1-2 as only one example of many Paul gives.]
I've also come to appreciate the emphasis on the "laying on of hands" [Hebrews 6:2] which seems to have indicated the blessings of a fellowship on a person and their ministry. It may well be that this is the ONLY kind/form of ordination that you will find in the scriptures. Be that as it may, I don't believe you will find the system of ordination that we have put together in Holy Writ, especially the idea of licensing prior to ordination so that you wind of with many having a license to preach but no evidence of a call that qualifies them for ordination. I know and sympathize with the need for a church to say something that allows a potential pastor/preacher student a reduction of cost when entering a Baptist school but I wonder if something other than a license would not be better. Remember the Government recognizes the license to be equal with an ordination for tax purposes, in fact, all purposes.
I'm not saying what we're doing is evil. In fact, it could be argued that it is needed. Ordination/licensing is demanded by government officials for those who marry the living and bury the dead.[Certainly if this is done with regularity or in the name of a church.] At the very least, one or the other, it doesn't matter which, ordination or license, is necessary when you start talking tax exemptions.
So...I was faced, as were our seven Elders, at my last pastorate, ten years ago, with how to recognize women in ministry and fit it into the "laying on of hands" and the "ordination" required by the government. Do we "ordain" them to the gospel ministry? [That would make them pastors in the eyes of the government.] Do we make the "laying on of hands" a meaningless gesture? What do we do?
We devised a system. Notice I call it "frail" in the title so I readily admit it's fallibility. We dropped licensing and designed two tiers [yes, tiers] of ordination. One tier was for the ordination of Pastors and Deacons. [Tier one] The other was for all other ministers [men and women] such as youth, children, counseling, and the myriad of ministeries that are legitimate and needed in the Body of Christ. The first tier was specifically for Pastors. [We saw this including Elders/Bishops since we view all three terms refering to the same person.] That tier was also for Deacons as mentioned.
The second tier was specifically for a ministry named, such as counseling or youth, and did not go beyond that specified call/ministry. We laid hands on them and appropriately gave to them a certificate of ordination [tier two] that reflected their being set aside for that work of ministry.
The first tier was reserved for men though I'm not saying I personally totally agreed with that then or now. But it was a major step in the right direction for our local felloship. [By this I mean I don't reserve the ministry of deacon to men. But I was one of seven Elders and we were seven of a whole congregation and it seemed best by almost all at the time. I embraced that position and lived by it while a part of that group, while at the same time having a bit of a different opinion personally.]
It worked well and there are people [men and women] working under that ordination method [one couple on the east coast in a counseling ministry where both are ordained] and are able to operate in ministry with the blessings of both their local fellowship and their government.
This was an attempt to handle a local congregation's desire to create an effective way of recognizing women as a legitimate part of the Body of Christ and for them to be qualified to minister in the eyes of our culture. Perfect? Absolutely not. In violation of scripture? Show me where. A tool for working effectively in our culture. I think so. The final answer on the complex issue of ordination and need for rethinking it? Hardly. One church's effort to meet a need? Yes.