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Women as Pastors Pt2: What Does Paul Teach in 1 Timothy 2:12 ?

The question we must ask should be does God chose women to lead? We see that the answer is proven through the bible. Paul accepted this. So we must ask if there were certain groups of women whom were causing trouble in the bible? Before you read this, keep one thing in mind. Is there any biblical reference to support the theory that a Greek word means one thing for a woman, and a different for a man. Second, remember whom Paul is writing to, and what problem he is addressing.

Before you answer, take time to read the verses listed her and confirm through Strongs that I’ve translated the Greek properly. There are two or three things that follow through bible translation:

1. If something is important it is repeated multiple times in the bible.
2. The whole scripture is one letter from God. Taking things out of context or translating them to fit your ideals is a sin.

1 Timothy 2:12

It is very possible that Paul saw that the powerful women of Ephesus did not have a humble heart for God. They wanted to retain the power gained in their worship of Artemis, and the money. Paul stated at the beginning of 1 Timothy that his purpose for writing the letter was to stop certain ones from teaching false doctrines. The Greek word here does not mean men, it means ‘people’ or ‘ones.’

It is important to note that in 1 Timothy 2:11-15 Paul was speaking to the church in Ephesus. There is also some debate among theologians whether the first few words ‘Let women’ means that, or it means ‘Let That Woman’ or ‘Let Her’. The problem comes from the fact that Paul distinctly uses the singular word ‘a woman’ or ‘the woman’ or ‘that woman’ – not the plural as we are often taught.

It is also noted in verse 11 that Paul is talking about women who are still learning – not those who are ready for authority. No matter whether she was a powerful women in the community of Ephesus, Paul wanted her to know that her power did not extend into God’s Kingdom.

It should also be noted that the word ‘submission’ doesn’t really mean second-rate, servant, or subjected to. The word is the opposite of rebellion. Paul wanted the women of Ephesus to stop rebelling against God’s teaching.

The third problem comes from the word ‘authentein’. This does not mean authority. Authentein is most definitely not the Greek word for authority (Greek: exousia) which is a common in the New Testament. Authentein is means to be “arrogant” and “self-willed”. Paul used this word in Titus 1: 7 where he writes that overseers must not be arrogant (authades). In Greek literature this word is used to reference violent crimes including murder, child sacrifice, but most often in the connotation of sexual immorality or promiscuity. This word is not used, ever, in conjunction to a Godly woman.

Women must be silent. Again, the Greek word hesuchia means calmness and quietness, as in ‘keeping one’s seat’ or ‘remaining in order’, a word which is translated differently in the 1 Timothy 2:2, and 11. The very same chapter!

The second last part comes from verses 13 to 15. Many use this to say that women must not be in leadership because Adam was made first, and he was not deceived. There was no ‘order’ in the Garden of Eden. Man and women were one, in perfect unison. They lived in harmony and unity. They had dominion together.

This must be read with verse 15 – women will be preserved through bearing children. Verses 13 – 15 refer to the fact that the Ephesian women looked to Artemis for help during child birth. Paul was saying that Artemis couldn’t help them, only God. He may also be addressing moral purity here.

Paul wants the women to live in harmony with men in the church, not retain their rebellious and arrogant allegiance with Artemis. There is nothing in 1 Tmothy 2 that suggests this is a universal teaching. As most of Paul’s teaching it is ‘occasional’ – meaning that it refers to the people who he is writing the letter to. Another way to understand this is to apply it to your own conversations. When you are talking to a friend, or writing a letter, you do not talk and make sure you reference everything to everyone in your community. No, you write to that person, about things that matter to you and that person.

Does that verse mean that it doesn’t apply today? Certainly not. There are many Gnostic women who still follow these same practices. There are many rebellious and arrogant women in the church. And, there is a growing number of Christians who believe that God winks at sexual immorality. This verse is as relevant today as it ever was, to the people who believe the same things as the church in Ephesus.

The second thing that we must take into consideration is that neither the Hebrew Talmud, or the Bible, dictates that a woman cannot be in authority – except one verse – a verse that is in direct conflict of what Paul practiced and taught the churches to practice. If a teaching is important then God repeats it many times.

Women as Pastors PT1: Women Paul Praised

Women As Pastors Pt2:What Does Paul Teach in 1 Timothy 2:12

Women as Pastors PT3: Does Paul Exclude Women as Pastors? 1 Timothy

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