Husband as the Priest of the home?

Husband as the Priest of the home?

With the push towards defining biblical manhood and womanhood, often men are pressured into a leadership role where they feel overwhelmed by their responsibilities. Probably none more stressful than the title given to them as “Priest of the home”. But is this position biblical?

Nowhere in scripture is there to be a designated “priest of the hom”. In Judges chapters 17 & 18 Micah, an idol worshipper, consecrated his son as a priest in his home (Judges 17:5) and he also persuaded a Levite to be his personal priest (Judges 17:7-13). This “priest of the home” was involved with idol worship (Judges 18:4, 14-20) and he was not set up as a “priest in the home” by God.

A priest is one who represents the people to God and offers sacrifices to God. Our High Priest is Jesus himself and he is both a mediator between mankind and God and the one who offered the ultimate blood sacrifice for our sins. Since we have Jesus as our High Priest, is there any need for a single priest in the home representing the family to God? Let’s see what scripture says. 1 Peter 2:5, 9 says that we are all to be priests to God in order to offer up spiritual sacrifices.

1 Peter 2:5 you also, as living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house for a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

1 Peter 2:9 But you are A CHOSEN RACE, A royal PRIESTHOOD, A HOLY NATION, A PEOPLE FOR God’s OWN POSSESSION, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;

By removing the wife from a joint priesthood with her husband and making only the husband responsible for seeking God’s will in all family decisions, those who espouse the unbiblical position of the man as the sole priest in the home, relegate the wife’s participation to a secondary and subordinate position in the home. This dismantles the woman’s equality as joint-heir with her husband and threatens to limit her spiritual growth.

The ultimate goal of every believer is to be conformed to the image of Christ and to grow into a mature “son” of God. All believers are called “sons” of God because all believers are fellow heirs with Christ. Because we are fellow heirs with Christ, all believers are expected to grow to maturity by learning how to make spiritual decisions that conform to biblical principles. Paul said that in the next life we (men and women in the body of Christ) will judge angels (1 Corinthians 6:3) so it is so important that we all learn how to make mature spiritual decisions in this life.

By believing in the faulty doctrine that men are the sole priest in the home, many women have been taught that their husband is spiritually responsible for them. They think that if they love God and follow their husband’s spiritual lead that they will have no responsibility in the decisions made by their husbands. However in two of the best known examples of a husband not making wise spiritual decisions, Adam and Ananias (Acts 5:1), the wife was judged for her actions equally with the husband. There is no example of a husband called to account for his wife’s actions or a wife freed from spiritual responsibility because her husband made the original decision as in the case of Ananias. God did not ask Adam what Eve had done even though Adam was there with Eve during her temptation (Genesis 3:6) and Sapphira was held equally responsible for her acceptance of her husband’s plan to deceive the Holy Spirit (Acts 5:9).

As joint-heirs of Christ and partners in the holy, royal priesthood, husband and wife have equal responsibility to seek God’s will for the family and equal responsibility to work together to preform God’s will in the home.

210 thoughts on “Husband as the Priest of the home?

  1. Cheryl, I just found your comment on my blog (my spammer had nabbed it–more than one link and it nabs comments automatically). Anwyays, great to see your blog over here!

    You are so right on with this post. One of the HUGEST things we have to grapple with is the fact that setting up the Husband As Priest means we are setting up a mediatorship. Men don’t need one, but women do. Patriarchists/complimentarians are essentially saying that women need a mediator between them and God–first, daughters under their fathers and then wives under their husbands.

    But this idea that a mediator is required is completely unsupported when we look at the Gospel…therefore is something we really need to stop and consider before we teach it.

  2. Welcome Molly!

    I agree with your summary and I also think that we need to do more to expose the ungodly pressures that have been placed on men who have been taught that they are to be a priest over their wives. I remember as a child hearing the teaching that the husband will answer to God for whatever his wife does or doesn’t do. No wonder so many men think they need to dominate their wives. After all if they are solely responsible for their wive’s actions, shouldn’t the men rule over their wives and force them to obey? It’s sad that this attitude is still prevalent today.

    I have been mulling over the idea of doing another video series, this time on the subject of marriage and headship/submission. It would deal with different perversions of God’s arrangement for marriage such as the false teaching about the husband being the priest over the wife. I haven’t seen anything in a video format that deals with exposing these false doctrines. If the Lord continues to lead me in this direction, this is something I would like to work on.

  3. Hey, Cheryl, one thing I would appreciate you guys maybe doing a little more research on is the emerging church movement. I noticed in the pamphlet that came with the dvd’s that you guys are presently “anti” it, yet have the same arguments that most folks do who completely misunderstand the movement (such as Slice of Laeodicea, etc).

    An excellent “primer” (an accurate primer, too)… Scot McKnight over at JesusCreed.org just wrote an excellent pdf about it… Let me see if I can find a link. It’s worth printing off and reading carefully, because it explains many of the misunderstandings that some have about what emerging actually is.
    http://www.jesuscreed.org/?p=1624
    (link to the pdf provided in that post).

    Warmly,
    Molly

  4. Yes, it is worth putting the effort into more research. There is actually a difference between the Emergent Church (with a capital ‘E’) and the emerging church movement. Much in the emerging movement is just fine and geared towards younger people who have a different mindset. The Emergent Church is quite another thing with a lukewarm approach to sin and righteousness and some of the major Christian doctrines. Bob DeWaay has a debate with one of the leaders of the Emergent church that I would like to purchase. I think it is important to hear it for myself as it is my understanding that the Emergent church leader wouldn’t commit to any doctrine as truth. It is important that we hold tight to sound doctrine and test everything by the Word of God.

    Thanks for your suggestion, I will look into it further.

  5. Yes, there is that unfortunate element, but there are many others who are not like that. It’s one of those things where the movement is so diverse that it’s difficult to say you love it or you hate it–lol–(maybe a both/and is in order). 🙂

    But, anyways, I recall the pamphlet I’d recieved saying something to the effect of the emerging movement being dangerous, though maybe I read it wrong or something… Anyways, I just wanted to take the opportunity to encourage you to explore it further, because there are *many* voices within it, many of whom hold tightly to orthodox doctrine (Apostles Creed, etc) but simply feel called to reach a postmodern culture as opposed to a modern and are seeking God on what that might look like. Again, they NOT leaving doctrinal foundations, but simply wondering what the church might look like in a postmodern culture.

    http://www.friendofmissional.org/ This is a great example of what I’m talking about.

    Warmly,
    Molly by Golly

  6. Hey there Molly by Golly 🙂

    I am not sure what pamphlet was sent with the DVD as I am not involved with the shipping. I do know that our ministry stands firmly for testing everything and holding fast to that which is good. If any emerging type of church holds firmly to the foundational doctrines of scripture and holds to scripture as God-breathed, then we can fellowship with a clear conscience with these brothers and sisters in Christ. The only thing that could be of concern is that “doing church” is not relegated to a seeker centered service where the gospel is not clearly preached because it might offend the non-Christian. Although we are to be seeker sensitive, the church is the place where we grow in our knowledge of God and our place to serve our Lord and each other. If it becomes too focused on the felt needs of the non-Christian and stops growing and equipping the Christian, we need to be concerned. Our son right now is in a seeker centered church. He has been diligently working on the Pastor and the Elders trying to convince them to preach the word of God in a clear way for the edification of the whole church. He has been told that the full gospel will be understood eventually by the non-Christian but for the time being they choose to not offend by preaching about sin and righteousness and a coming judgment and the blood atonement. In fact they are so against his preaching the full gospel to the lost that they have forbidden him to teach in the church for fear that he will teach the gospel to the unbeliever. He is also not allowed to play in the church band or even teach the children. It is so sad that the seeker centered movement is so unwilling to preach the word that they are more willing to cater to the felt need of unbelievers than the truth of scripture.

  7. I would love to see a DVD teaching on different false doctrines concerning marriage 🙂

    Oh and if you make it, please put at least one more language on the DVD, Spanish for example 🙂

  8. Hi Martin,

    Well the DVD on marriage is in the works in the research stage. It may be a few years for production. I certainly will consider putting another language on the DVD. That would involve needing translation help but it is feasible.

  9. Hi Cheryl. Thanks so much for the work you have done on the issues with women in ministry and marriage. This is my first time here at “strive to enter” and it has been a great help to me, for I have experienced the hindrances and opposition toward me for encouraging others to walk in the ways of the Lord simply because I am a woman. The Lord has strengthened me throughout the years and given me grace to respond in love, knowing that His sons and daughters will prophesy. The prejudice still hurts at times, but He gives His balm and joy. I have a question though. Have you ever thought about doing an article on the comment that Paul makes about the “man being the glory of God, but the woman is the glory of man”? From my understanding of creation Adam is not the glory of the dust, but he is the glory of his Creator; Eve is not the glory of a rib, but the glory of her Creator. Thanks again

  10. Hi Diane,

    I have so glad that this blog has been a help to you. I did a 45 minute teaching on 1 Corinthians 11 on the glory issue regarding man and woman on my DVD, but I can also do an blog article on the issue as well. It may have to be in a few parts so that it isn’t so long.

    Right now I am still on a 3 week long ministry trip so I don’t have time right now to do the article right now until we arrive home. Keep watch for a new post, and thanks for the suggestion.

  11. Hey Cheryl.

    Interesting that the pivotal scripture in relation to authority structure in the marriage has not been discussed, I bring it to light in this post and invite commentary

    ***Ephesians 5:22 Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord, 5:23 because the husband is the head of the wife as also Christ is the head of the church – he himself being the savior of the body***

    You have rightfully said that it is not mentioned anywhere in the bible that the Husband is specifically “Priest of the Home” and that “All” in the body of Christ (both men and women) are called to be priests. True but on an examination of the relationship of Christ and the church , you must admit that Christ is the “High” Priest of the church and the point I’m trying to make is that He remains the “High” and the “only High” priest even when His entire body of believers are priests themselves.

    Granted the husband is not designated the “title” priest of the home but would it also be correct to say that he is the High priest of His wife in replication of Christ’s leading of the church.

    ***5:24 But as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything***

    If wives are called to submit to the husband in “everything”, shouldnt the husband be responsible if not solely at least to the greater extent of his calling in the spiritual direction his wife and children are taking. And if that be the case would’nt “The priest of the Home” be an appropriate title to describe his calling.

    You are right in saying that it is a responsibility which men sometimes feel a tendency to find burdensome but that would not be the case if the couple were “equally yoked” and the Husband realizes that his burden is light and his yoke is easy. All he needs to do is trust and obey the leading of the mighty Holy spirit and keep his home surrounded with the love of God.

  12. Tarun,

    I am glad that you popped by.

    You said:

    True but on an examination of the relationship of Christ and the church , you must admit that Christ is the “High” Priest of the church…

    There are many things that Jesus is to the Church that the husband is not. Although Jesus is “head” of the church and the husband is “head” of the wife, Jesus is also Savior of the church and Lord of the church and God of the church. The husband is none of these things. We cannot just input everything that Jesus is to the husband unless the scripture tells us so.

    Jesus is the only High Priest and the husband is not a secondary high priest of the wife. Jesus is unique in this aspect.

    You said:

    Granted the husband is not designated the “title” priest of the home but would it also be correct to say that he is the High priest of His wife in replication of Christ’s leading of the church.

    No it would not be correct. If the husband was the high priest of his wife then the husband would have to offer the sacrifice for his wife and would be responsible for her salvation. Are you prepared to go that far? I am not nor does scripture say a word about the husband as functioning as any kind of high priest responsible for the spirituality of his wife or for her salvation.

    You also asked:

    If wives are called to submit to the husband in “everything”, shouldnt the husband be responsible if not solely at least to the greater extent of his calling in the spiritual direction his wife and children are taking. And if that be the case would’nt “The priest of the Home” be an appropriate title to describe his calling.

    This is simply not scriptural. If it were we would find places where the husband is responsible for his wife’s spiritual direction. Adam was never held responsible for Eve’s choice and neither was Sapphira exonerated because she followed her husband’s suggestion that they both lie about the piece of property that they sold. Unfortunately many women have been influenced to believe that they are not responsible for their actions as long as their husband oversees them and guides them. God says this is not true when he judges women separately from their husbands. God never gives us any indication that husbands will be held responsible for their wives or that wives are “home free” by following their husbands. All of us are required to be mature Christians and to follow the Lord individually. Also no where does God ever give the man the mandate of a priest who makes the spiritual decisions for his wife.

    The issue of submission is a big one and one that we will explore further in this blog after we are done with the spiritual gifts of men and women.

    Lastly you said:

    You are right in saying that it is a responsibility which men sometimes feel a tendency to find burdensome but that would not be the case if the couple were “equally yoked” and the Husband realizes that his burden is light and his yoke is easy. All he needs to do is trust and obey the leading of the mighty Holy spirit and keep his home surrounded with the love of God.

    Women too need to trust and obey the leading of the Holy Spirit and keep their homes surrounded with the love of God. Nowhere are women exempt from finding out the Holy Spirit’s will for them by trusting in the husband’s “hearing from God”. Women too are to have an intimate relationship with God and they too are to hear from God. To make women’s responsibility with God any less is to deny that men and women are equal before God and equally can have an intimate relationship with God.

    I hope that helps 🙂

  13. Cheryl,

    I’m glad I popped by too 🙂 and lets use your
    style of response to clarify my stance,

    (C)There are many things that Jesus is to the Church that the husband is not.
    (T) I agree.

    (C)Although Jesus is “head” of the church and the husband is “head” of the wife, Jesus is also Savior of the church and Lord of the church and God of the church. The husband is none of these things.
    (T)I was not trying to imply that the Husband “is” the Saviour/Lord and God of his wife.That is a role that only Christ can fulfill. However even though he “is not” what Christ is in full, his wife is expected to have an attitude toward him “as if he were”.

    (C)We cannot just input everything that Jesus is to the husband unless the scripture tells us so.
    (T) We are not inputing everything that Jesus is to the Husband, what we are doing is defining the attitude a wife should have towards her Husband and scripture does tell us so.
    ***Ephesians 5:22 Wives, submit to your husbands “as” to the Lord ***

    The key word in this verse being “as”

    (C) Jesus is the only High Priest and the husband is not a secondary high priest of the wife. Jesus is unique in this aspect.
    (T)In no way did I intend to mean that the husband is a secondary high priest. There is only one High priest and that is Jesus but the point I was trying to make was that even though both men and women are designated priests we still look up as a church to Jesus who is a priest too but his office is of “The” High priest and in the same way that the body of Christ looks up to Jesus as the High priest (being priests themselves)so also should a wife look up to her Husband as her head not considering him to be “the” High priest but definitely a priest who has the calling to lead and she as a priest with a calling to follow.

    ***Ephesians 5:23 because the husband is the head of the wife as also Christ is the head of the church – he himself being the savior of the body***

    I did use “high priest of the wife” to illustrate that he was called to be the spiritual leader of the couple in an aspect similar to the differences in office between Christ who is a leader of the church of priests.

    (C)If the husband was the high priest of his wife then the husband would have to offer the sacrifice for his wife and would be responsible for her salvation. Are you prepared to go that far?

    (T)If I came across as meaning “the” High priest to the wife let me make it clear that it was not the meaning I intended. Of course Jesus is the only mediator in respect to salvation.
    and to answer your question, Yes I am called to give myself for her and I will or atleast die trying. I do not mean a sacrifice which leads to salvation for my wife as I know it will not, but sacrifice in as much as is required even unto death putting her before myself which by the way is a given when you are talking about the love Jesus had for the church and incidentally is also a parallel calling for the Christian, Revelation 12:11c “and they loved not their lives unto the death.”

    (C)I am not, nor does scripture say a word about the husband as functioning as any kind of high priest responsible for the spirituality of his wife or for her salvation.
    (T)Refer you to my last response for the salvation bit but in terms of the spirituality of his wife I would say that scripture does not say that he is responsible but that he is called to (there is a difference)lead her spiritual walk upwards, refer below

    Ephesians 5:27 so that he may present the church to himself as glorious – not having a stain or wrinkle, or any such blemish, but holy and blameless.36 5:28 In the same way husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies

    Please note the very clear “In the same way”

    (C)If it were we would find places where the husband is responsible for his wife’s spiritual direction. Adam was never held responsible for Eve’s choice and neither was Sapphira exonerated because she followed her husband’s suggestion that they both lie about the piece of property that they sold. Unfortunately many women have been influenced to believe that they are not responsible for their actions as long as their husband oversees them and guides them. God says this is not true when he judges women separately from their husbands. God never gives us any indication that husbands will be held responsible for their wives or that wives are “home free” by following their husbands. All of us are required to be mature Christians and to follow the Lord individually.

    (T)The husband is not held responsible for his wifes decisions, neither are wives allowed to be irresponsble in following the lead of their Husband. It is a question of who leads and who follows if its quite obvious the Husband is guiding the wife the wrong way then she is expected to adhere to the Word of God as a priest in her own right and follow the leading of the Spirit.

    However if it is for e.g something like choosing a church when both have different preferences and both churches seem good I believe that the Husband’s prayerful choice should prevail.

    (C) All of us are required to be mature Christians and to follow the Lord individually
    (T) Let me put it this way – when you are “married” we are required to be mature Christians and follow the Lord “together”

    (C)Also no where does God ever give the man the mandate of a priest who makes the spiritual decisions for his wife.
    (T) Yes, he does not give him the mandate of a priest who makes the spiritual decisions for his wife in those words exactly but what he does say is ***Eph5:24 But as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.***

    We all have a free will and Jesus does not make our spiritual decisions for us, however He does let us know what His opinion is and I think that we would be wise to follow – would’nt you ?

    Please note that I am not saying the Husband’s decisions are always right but that if a couple grow closer and closer in their walk with the Lord as they should then the Husband making spiritual decisions in areas which are day-day would be expected and desired, the wife would be rightly expected to follow after deferring to the Word as the final authority.

    In that context take into account the following factors,
    (a)if men and women are priests
    (b)all Christians are called to a life of ministry
    (c)the home is socio-setup within which the husband and wife fulfill a part of their their priestly calling
    (d)The husband is expected to provide leadership in their spiritual walk together

    I think it would be safe to say that in the context of the home the Husband is the priest.
    Please note that I am not taking away the wife’s calling as a priest but when we use the term “Husband is the priest of the home” what we are implying is that he is the spiritual head in the context of his household.

    Look at the other 2 ways of putting it across.
    a) The wife is the priest of the home implies the wife leads , Husband follows
    b) Both are priests of the Home implies both can move in opposite directions even when in accordance with the word based on personal opinion and past experience and anything else which might cause them to take different paths

    (C)The issue of submission is a big one and one that we will explore further in this blog after we are done with the spiritual gifts of men and women.
    (T)I look forward to it.

    (C)Women too need to trust and obey the leading of the Holy Spirit and keep their homes surrounded with the love of God.
    (T)True

    (C)Nowhere are women exempt from finding out the Holy Spirit’s will for them by trusting in the husband’s “hearing from God”
    (T)This is the way it works. Since there is only One Holy Spirit. He will lead both the Husband and the Wife down the same road. However when both have heard differently (problem of the flesh)the Word is looked into, and who-soever’s leading aligns with the Word of God goes. Lets say both Husband and Wife have heard from God differently(Problem of the flesh)and both inspirations align with the word then the Husband who is the Head should be obeyed otherwise there is not really much point in the Word of God calling him the head is there ?

    (C)Women too are to have an intimate relationship with God and they too are to hear from God.
    (T)Yes and Amen.

    (C)To make women’s responsibility with God any less is to deny that men and women are equal before God
    (T)Their responsibilities are not lesser or greater. They are different and Yes, Men and Women are equal but unique.

    (C)and equally can have an intimate relationship with God.
    (T)Yes and Amen.

    (C)I hope that helps
    (T)I do too.

    May God bless.
    T

  14. Tarun,

    Again, welcome and thanks for posting.

    You said: I was not trying to imply that the Husband “is” the Saviour/Lord and God of his wife.That is a role that only Christ can fulfill. However even though he “is not” what Christ is in full, his wife is expected to have an attitude toward him “as if he were”.

    Actually that is pure and simple idolatry. Wives are not to look on their husbands as Lord and God. Can you imagine if we take this explanation and use it for a carved idol? We could then say that the idol is not God nor is the idol Lord, but we can have an attitude towards the idol “as if it were Lord and God”. Do you see how idolatrous this is? No, my friend, Jesus is our God and there is to be no other Lord or God besides him.

    You said: We are not inputing everything that Jesus is to the Husband, what we are doing is defining the attitude a wife should have towards her Husband and scripture does tell us so.
    ***Ephesians 5:22 Wives, submit to your husbands “as” to the Lord ***

    Scripture is not saying here that wives are to submit to their husbands as if they are their Lord and God. Scripture rather defines it’s own terminology:

    Col 3:23 Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men,
    Col 3:24 knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance. It is the Lord Christ whom you serve.

    The Amplified Bible says:

    Col. 3:23, 24 Whatever may be your task, work at it heartily (from the soul), as [something done] for the Lord and not for men, Knowing [with all certainty] that it is from the Lord [and not from men] that you will receive the inheritance which is your [real] reward. [The One Whom] you are actually serving [is] the Lord Christ (the Messiah).

    The husband is not the replacement for God, but honoring the husband is something that a wife does that is actually done for Christ’s sake and will rewarded by Christ.

    You said: “in the same way that the body of Christ looks up to Jesus as the High priest (being priests themselves)so also should a wife look up to her Husband as her head not considering him to be “the” High priest but definitely a priest who has the calling to lead and she as a priest with a calling to follow.”

    My point is that this isn’t scriptural. Nowhere is this view found in scripture. One can only get the idea of the husband to be considered a higher priest than the wife nor can we get the teaching that the husband is called to lead and she is called to follow. I know that this is tradition, but it is a tradition that has no foundation in scripture. Give me just one verse that says that a man is to “lead” his wife. It just isn’t there. When women follow this teaching they are prone to stay back and not take any responsibility for their own spiritual growth. It is too easy to rely on someone else when scripture says that we are all to grow up and be mature Christians trained to make wise decisions.

    You said: Yes I am called to give myself for her and I will or atleast die trying. I do not mean a sacrifice which leads to salvation for my wife as I know it will not, but sacrifice in as much as is required even unto death putting her before myself which by the way is a given when you are talking about the love Jesus had for the church and incidentally is also a parallel calling for the Christian, Revelation 12:11c “and they loved not their lives unto the death.”

    I think it is a wonderful thing to sacrifice yourself for your wife. Many godly men do that as an act of love. However what many men mean by this is that they sacrifice of themselves to make all the decisions for their wives. They are to lead her and make her decisions for her and this leads the woman to remaining childlike and dependent. When the man is willing to lead in love and sacrifice himself so that he allows her to make decisions too, then that is a true and godly sacrifice. Somehow I am not sure that is what you are saying.

    You said: “I would say that scripture does not say that he is responsible but that he is called to (there is a difference)lead her spiritual walk upwards, refer below

    Ephesians 5:27 so that he may present the church to himself as glorious – not having a stain or wrinkle, or any such blemish, but holy and blameless.36 5:28 In the same way husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies”

    Please note the very clear “In the same way”

    We understand scripture by reading the entire text and not isolating one scripture. Look again at the verse and the one following.

    Eph 5:28 So husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself;
    Eph 5:29 for no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ also does the church,

    Scripture is talking about nourishing and cherishing the physical. It is talking about loving their wives “as their own bodies” and is not talking about presenting their wives to God spiritually. While Christ cherishes and looks after our spiritual welfare so the husband is to cherish and look after the wife’s physical (and emotional) welfare. If this scripture meant that the husband is responsible to present their wives to God pure spiritually, then we have a big problem. Every doctrine in scripture is repeated so that it is verified. Where does scripture ever repeat the thought that a man is responsible for his wife’s spirituality? Also every example that we have regarding a husband and wife brought before the Lord for judgment, the husband and wife are judged individually and no husband is ever said to be responsible for the wife’s actions. If this is the only scripture that you can pull out to verify that husbands are responsible for their wives, then you are left with an unverified witness of this “doctrine”. No other doctrine is every left without a second witness.

    You said: “The husband is not held responsible for his wifes decisions, neither are wives allowed to be irresponsble in following the lead of their Husband. It is a question of who leads and who follows if its quite obvious the Husband is guiding the wife the wrong way then she is expected to adhere to the Word of God as a priest in her own right and follow the leading of the Spirit.”

    I do understand that this is what you believe but the problem is that you don’t have any verses to prove that this is what the scripture teaches. No where is the husband ever told to guide the wife, or take authority over her. Each of us are required to hear from and follow the Holy Spirit for ourselves. If the woman only hears from the Holy Spirit when her husband is going in a wrong direction, then she is inferior in the body of Christ. No, my friend, the woman is expected to grow up and mature in her own faith and her own ability to hear from God.

    You said: “However if it is for e.g something like choosing a church when both have different preferences and both churches seem good I believe that the Husband’s prayerful choice should prevail.”

    The wife certainly can submit to her husband’s decision here or the husband can sacrifice his preference for the wife’s preference 🙂 That is sacrifice in action!

    You said: Let me put it this way – when you are “married” we are required to be mature Christians and follow the Lord “together”

    Togetherness is wonderful and this is the goal. However this doesn’t mean that the wife isn’t to hear from God equally with her husband. If both of them are equally submitted to God, he should be speaking to both of them so their decisions will be much easier.

    You said: Yes, he does not give him the mandate of a priest who makes the spiritual decisions for his wife in those words exactly but what he does say is ***Eph5:24 But as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.***

    However what does this submission look like? The wife submits by honoring her husband and the husband sacrifices by giving up his own personal choices to sacrifice for her. This is submission and sacrifice in action. Anything else is taking authority over another person’s will when there should be sacrifice instead. When they both work together in equal honor, it is an easy thing to work things out.

    You said: “We all have a free will and Jesus does not make our spiritual decisions for us, however He does let us know what His opinion is and I think that we would be wise to follow – would’nt you ?”

    What I have found from scripture and personal experience is that Jesus does not always give us any more of his opinion than what is given in scripture. He gives guidelines and then he expects us to “work out our salvation” by taking the guidelines that he has set and deciding for ourselves how best to honor him with our mature decisions. After all in the next life we will be required to judge the world and the angels so we need to all learn how to make our own decisions here in this life. In the next life, there will be no relationship of husband and wife so the wife will be on her own to judge angels and will the men also be on their own. Maturity is the mandate and wise decisions by all is the growing experience.

    You said: “(d)The husband is expected to provide leadership in their spiritual walk together

    I think it would be safe to say that in the context of the home the Husband is the priest.
    Please note that I am not taking away the wife’s calling as a priest but when we use the term “Husband is the priest of the home” what we are implying is that he is the spiritual head in the context of his household.”

    No it is not scriptural to say that the Husband is the priest of the home. This is a cultural understanding, but it does not come from scripture. In scripture, the wife is also referred to as manager of the home. 1 Timothy 5:14 says in the Amplified Bible:

    So I would have younger [widows] marry, bear children, guide the household, [and] not give opponents of the faith occasion for slander or reproach.

    The Greek word for “guide” is oikodespoteo and it means (in Strong’s) to be the “head” of the family and the WordStudy Dictionary adds:

    “the master of the house To be master of a house exercising authority, with the emphasis on absolute rule, as of a despot”

    No, my friend, there is no one “head” of the family and no one priest of the family. This is just not scriptural.

    We will be exploring this further at a later time as I will be posting on marriage and the women’s issue.

    Blessings!

  15. That’s quite a bit I need to write now 🙂 but before I go into breaking that up I’d like to bring to the forefront a few scriptures which will put what I believe is the pivotal scripture in this discussion (Eph 5) in context and rightly divide the Word.

    So If this is the scripture which the Lord has provided to show that the Husband is called to lead
    i.e
    5:22 Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord, 5:23 because the husband is the head of the wife as also Christ is the head of the church – he himself being the savior of the body. 5:24 But as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.

    then a reiteration of similar obedience to God’s authority structure that he set up in His soverign Wisdom (Spend a minute on the scripture below)

    Romans 13:1 Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except by God’s appointment, and the authorities that exist have been instituted by God. 13:2 So the person who resists such authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will incur judgment

    When Romans 13:1 says “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities” Would’nt it be right to say that the “Governing authority” plays the lead role. I’d like you to make the difference between obeying the law of the land that has been set up by the leader of the land and saying that to follow the law of the land in totality is idolatory. It is an authority structure set up by God for our benefit.

    Now I may have my own opinion about the law of the land I live in and may actually feel that it is downright dumb but I am still expected to follow it unless it contradicts the Word of God.

    In the situation immediately above who would you say is the leader – me as a Godfearing citizen or the Head of State who is creating the rules I follow ? Sure I can vote, Sure I can petition, Sure I can try and influence the leader every leagal way I can but the final decision lies very clearly with the ruler doesnt it. That establishes leadership and I am sure you can draw the line between that and Idolatory which can be defined as a situation that Shadrach and gang had to face.

    Now apply the same principle to Ephesians 5:22- 24

    Can you still say that this scripture “5:22 Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord, 5:23 because the husband is the head of the wife as also Christ is the head of the church – he himself being the savior of the body.” does not give the Husband the mantle of leadership and the final word(which the Husband is accountable to God for)
    Sure the Wife can petition, influence and call in support but at the end of the day if she is unable to persuade him to change his mind “she is to follow his direction unless it contradicts the Word” Of course he is going to be wrong many a time and is she called to go her own way then ?

    No,Not if you take 1 Peter 3 1-6 into consideration ***In the same way, wives, be subject to your own husbands. Then, even if some are disobedient to the word, they will be won over without a word by the way you live, 3:2 when they see your pure and reverent conduct.3:3 Let your beauty not be external – the braiding of hair and wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes – 3:4 but the inner person of the heart, the lasting beauty of a gentle and tranquil spirit, which is precious in God’s sight. 3:5 For in the same way the holy women who hoped in God long ago adorned themselves by being subject to their husbands, 3:6 like Sarah who obeyed Abraham, calling him lord. You become her children when you do what is good and have no fear in doing so.****

    Ok Cheryl, I’m sure you will have something to say about this . I cant wait : )
    The rain has stopped and I got to ride off..

  16. Brother Tarun,

    You said:

    When Romans 13:1 says “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities” Would’nt it be right to say that the “Governing authority” plays the lead role. I’d like you to make the difference between obeying the law of the land that has been set up by the leader of the land and saying that to follow the law of the land in totality is idolatory. It is an authority structure set up by God for our benefit.

    Actually I wouldn’t say anything of the sort. Obeying the law over us that has been set up by God is not idolatry. Idolatry is when we set something up as God and give devotion to a thing or person as God (or god).

    You asked:

    In the situation immediately above who would you say is the leader – me as a Godfearing citizen or the Head of State who is creating the rules I follow ?

    The law of the land is our governing authority plain and simple. We cannot just make up our own rules. We are to obey unless the human law overrides God’s law and then we are required to disobey human law makers.

    You said:

    Now apply the same principle to Ephesians 5:22- 24

    My friend, you cannot take two unrelated passages and make an application between the two. Ephesians is not talking about a law or governing authority. That would be completely reading into the text.

    You said:

    Can you still say that this scripture “5:22 Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord, 5:23 because the husband is the head of the wife as also Christ is the head of the church – he himself being the savior of the body.” does not give the Husband the mantle of leadership and the final word(which the Husband is accountable to God for)

    This scripture says nothing about the husband being the leader nor is God telling the husband to take authority over his wife. Neither does it say that the husband is accountable to God for the final word. Each of us are accountable in exactly the same way. If that is not true, then please show me from scripture where it is not true.

    Lastly you quoted:

    1 Peter 3:5 For in the same way the holy women who hoped in God long ago adorned themselves by being subject to their husbands, 3:6 like Sarah who obeyed Abraham, calling him lord. You become her children when you do what is good and have no fear in doing so.****

    My dear brother, this is not telling us that Sarah called Abraham her God or that she treated him as such. The term “lord” has several meanings, but the one which would be applicable here can be found in Strong’s concordance. It says it means:

    by implication Mr. (as a respectful title)

    So Sarah was calling Abraham what in that day was a respectful title. I often call my husband “sir” and I do it out of respect for him. That may be odd in this day and age, but I do like honoring him in every way that I can. Wives are told to give their husbands respect and Sarah did just that. Today “lord” is not commonly said as a way of showing respect. But Sarah absolutely and in no way committed idolatry by treating Abraham as her God.

    The problem that you have to come face to face with is that scripture never even once tells the husband to take any kind of authority over the wife. Scripture also does not tell the husband that he can command the wife nor does it give him the right to act as a governing authority commanding her to obey his law. Instead scripture commands him to love her and to give up his own desires for her. When he puts her first, he is showing love. When she puts him first, she is showing respect.

    The ESV shows this so clearly when it says in Romans 12:19:

    Rom 12:10 Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor.

    Honor and respect is to be given to both and putting each other first is God’s way.

  17. Cheryl,

    (C)My friend, you cannot take two unrelated passages and make an application between the two. Ephesians is not talking about a law or governing authority. That would be completely reading into the text.

    (T)Here are the 2 scriptures in brief again :
    (a)Ephesians talks about “Wives submitting to Husbands as to the Lord” and
    (b)Romans goes “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except by God’s appointment, and the authorities that exist have been instituted by God.”

    The application I am making is that as total obedience to a Governing authority is not Idolatory as accepted by you and me. In the same way complete obedience of a wife to her husband “as” to the Lord is not Idolatory and this is only “one” of the aspects that would constitute a wife’s overall attitude to the husband “without” being idolatorous.

    Now going by earlier posts I am quite sure you will say that nowhere in Ephesians does it say that a wife has to “totally obey” her Husband which is exactly what it means and this can be proven here.

    1 Peter 3 1-6 “In the same way, wives, be subject to your own husbands. Then, even if some are disobedient to the word, they will be won over without a word by the way you live, 3:2 when they see your pure and reverent conduct.3:3 Let your beauty not be external – the braiding of hair and wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes – 3:4 but the inner person of the heart, the lasting beauty of a gentle and tranquil spirit, which is precious in God’s sight. 3:5 For in the same way the holy women who hoped in God long ago adorned themselves by being subject to their husbands, 3:6 like Sarah who obeyed Abraham, calling him lord. You become her children when you do what is good and have no fear in doing so”

    Lets look at this exaltation to the wife point by point.

    Point 1. Be Subject to your own husband
    Point 2. Even if Husbands are disobedient to the Word they will be won over without a word (from the wife)by the way the wife lives.
    How much clearer can Scripture be, Even if the man is ungodly the Godly wife is expected to win him over by “the way she lives” and “without a word”
    I would like to emphasise the “without a word” bit and please note that this is for a man disobedient to the word of God.
    How much more should she remain “without a word” to a Godly husband who is following the leading of the Lord the best he knows how.
    – Now what I am saying here is that the “without a word” is an attitude of the heart. It is not mute obedience with rebellion in the heart but a total surrender of her will to the husband in heart (check Vs 4) This obviously follows through in action even if she thinks differently.(Please dont go into the idolatory bit here, we’ve already dealt with the difference)
    She can do this confidently, believing God to work out the situation for her and her husbands best ineterest knowing that she is in line with God’s word. It’s actually a question of the Wife’s faith in God and trusting him with childlike trust to reward her for her faith as opposed to her relying on her own wisdom and strategies which may be superior to her Husband’s in the natural and is exactly why she is put in that position so she may be proven of God in obeying the Husband given to her by God even if she knows differently and possibly better in the natural and thereby exhibiting trust in God and not her own strategies.

    ****Whew****

    Point 3. Again (in Vs 5)being subject to your Husbands (note how it is mentioned twice in this very same passage)

    Point 4. Lets discuss Sarah calling Abraham lord – Of course its tradition, she is not replacing Abraham for God what she is doing is exalting him as high as she knows to do.
    Jesus said, “Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks” (Matthew 12:34).
    Now would’nt you say that all Sarah would have been giving him is Lip service when she calls him lord and doesn’t obey him when he states his particular view on a subject and expects her to follow him.
    The fact is that the verse 3:6 actually goes “like Sarah who obeyed Abraham, calling him lord.

    So what Peter is trying to say here is that
    (a)Sarah obeyed
    (b)the obedience was done with a heart attitude which was so reverent that out of the mouth came “lord”

    Here again let me very clearly say that the word lord is not the point , a wife can call her husband anything she wants and that they are comfortable with but when push comes to shove God and the husband know that the wife will surrender her will to his. If she doesnt, its disobedience and we just established that obedience is a must.

    Now I ask you –
    (a)If there are 2 priests in the home and the wife priest is expected to obey the husband priest “absolutely” wouldn’nt the husband priest be the leader ? I’d say that’s kind of common sense

    (b)and if the Husband priest is the “leader” of the wife priest and hence the household.
    He becomes by God given right the “Priest of the home”

    Trust that clarifies.

    Later. . . .

  18. Tarun,

    Two equal partners listening to and preferring one another – that’s marriage.

    God commanded Abraham to obey Sarah and if God’s command to obey is something that makes one the follower and the one obeyed makes them the leader, then we see that other side of the coin in Genesis.

    Gen 21:12 ESV But God said to Abraham, “Be not displeased because of the boy and because of your slave woman. Whatever Sarah says to you, do as she tells you, for through Isaac shall your offspring be named.

    The word translated “do” in “Whatever Sarah says to you, do as she tells you” is the Hebrew word shama and it means to obey. God told Abraham to obey Sarah.

    There is much more to be said, but I don’t think this is the post to do it on since most people don’t read the comments on an older post. I have a post or two left to do on the issue of spiritual gifts, maybe a post on the debate with Matt Slick that I will be doing next week on the issue of women teaching the bible to men and then I want to move on to the issue of marriage and how that affects the ability for women to minister. If you can be patient, I think it would be better to answer these questions when everyone gets to read them and can participate in the discussion. That would be most helpful to all.

    I do not know how quick I will get to the issue of marriage but it will be the next big issue on this blog so if you could copy your comments here and post them on that blog topic, I am certain it will be a lively discussion.

    Blessings!
    Cheryl

  19. Cheryl,

    Sure, I’ll be happy to copy into the marriage post when it comes up but I’d just like to reply to your last post and I’ll leave it at that – Thanks.

    (c)Gen 21:12 ESV But God said to Abraham, “Be not displeased because of the boy and because of your slave woman. Whatever Sarah says to you, do as she tells you, for through Isaac shall your offspring be named.

    The word translated “do” in “Whatever Sarah says to you, do as she tells you” is the Hebrew word shama and it means to obey. God told Abraham to obey Sarah.

    (T) That’s absolutely right , now look at the following in terms of Sarah’s attitude in approaching this matter I’ll pull in one verse before this one.

    21:10 So she said to Abraham, “Banish that slave woman and her son, for the son of that slave woman will not be an heir along with my son Isaac!”

    21:11 Sarah’s demand displeased Abraham greatly because Ishmael was his son.19 21:12 But God said to Abraham, “Do not be upset about the boy or your slave wife. Do all that Sarah is telling you because through Isaac your descendants will be counted.

    Look at the pattern set up here.

    (1)Sarah “needs” Abraham’s consent to Banish the slave woman which is why she asks him to do so and doesnt do so herself regardless of his consent.
    (2)Sarah’s demand displeased Abraham.
    (3)Lets stop here for a minute and ponder what would have happenned had God not intervened. Hagar would not have been asked to leave because Abraham’s consent was not going to be given considering Sarah’s demand displeased him and that would have been that. Hagar would not have gone anywhere and Sarah would have to live with her in obedience to Abraham’s lack of consent and she would have to do it with a willing heart.

    (4)This is exactly my point, if the wife is obedient to the Husband as we know Sarah was (refer 1 Peter) she will receive the reward for her faith in following the Word to obey her husband and in this case God himself intervened and expressly instructs Abraham to do what Sarah told him to do because Abraham was clearly in the wrong and Sarah was right (in accordance with the Lords will)
    (5)That’s how the system is set up to work. obedience to the Husband is a faith proposition and the “Just shall walk by faith”
    (6)In other words the Wife is subject to the Husband as to the Lord and the Husband is subject to the Lord “not to the wife” but when the wife is obedient in faith to the husband then she receives the reward for her obedience to the husband from the Lord who intervenes and brings justice as always and especially when the Husband is misusing his God given position as was clearly the case here . .

    I’m over and out. This was fun and I hope it was helpful at some point. U take care.

  20. There’s a website called Christians for Biblical Equality. I’m not affiliated with them. I mention it because they have outstanding scholarly articles about the passages used in the debate regarding women, ministry, marriage, submission, and biblical doctrine.

    I wanted to post a reply to some of what’s been said here and I found myself at their website looking for particulars.

    Its a great resource for anyone interested in further study and in developing a strong position based on what the bible actually says.

  21. Tarun,

    As I said most of this can be discussed in the marriage post, so I won’t answer in this post. A couple of quick comments regarding what you said and we shall both leave this for the next set:

    You said: (1)Sarah “needs” Abraham’s consent to Banish the slave woman which is why she asks him to do so and doesnt do so herself regardless of his consent.

    Sarah doesn’t “need” Abraham’s consent at all. Hagar was Sarah’s maid so Sarah can do what she wants with her own maid. However while Hagar was Sarah’s maid, she was also Abraham’s concubine and because Sarah had herself “given” Hagar to Abraham, she now belonged to him.

    Secondly you said:

    (5)That’s how the system is set up to work. obedience to the Husband is a faith proposition and the “Just shall walk by faith”

    Scripture doesn’t say obedience is what a wife is to offer. She is to submit as he is to sacrifice. Yet a wife can obey her husband if she asks her to do something just as a husband can obey his wife as she asks him to do something. This is biblical and to disregard Abraham’s obedience is to disregard Abraham putting his wife and God first in his life over his concubine and his son.

    See you on the other marriage posts when they come up. I hope you don’t leave and not come back because it will be a lively discussion, I am sure!

  22. ” If it becomes too focused on the felt needs of the non-Christian and stops growing and equipping the Christian, we need to be concerned.”

    Cheryl, This is so important and one reason I even started to look at your teaching. You make clear in all of your teaching that sound doctrine is all important. When I first found your site, I kept waiting for the ‘liberal’ or felt needs doctrine to make its appearance. After quite a while, it has not. I purchased your DVD set, studied scripture in context along with it and it is right on. The introduction on that series is excellent.

    I came out of a seeker church. Ironically, they won’t preach the full Gospel, but they were very strict complementarians! Go figure.

  23. Lin,

    Thank you for your very kind words! You are right – I make a big deal about the importance of sound doctrine. There is a cost to pay for this, but to me it is worth it. My DVD set has been given to several liberal “scholars” who are very much in favor of women in ministry. They should love the DVDs because they present the egalitarian message in a very visual way and the message is not combative but gentle. However these “scholars” do not appear to like the way I handled the issue. I have made a strong stand that the bible is completely inspired and we cannot ignore scripture just because we don’t like what it says. This apparently is offensive to some.

    I worked very hard to understand the hard passages of scripture but I did not waver from keeping my understanding in tune with the inspired context as well as the inspired words and the inspired grammar. My understanding has come because I read the scriptures to truly understand what they are saying so that they can speak without contradiction. I do not come to the scriptures with a preconceived conclusion that I want to force on the texts themselves. Along the way I rejected many egalitarian arguments because they did not fit the context or they ignored some of the inspired words that didn’t fit their theory. It was my sincere belief (and it still is) that one can know they have the correct interpretation when there is nothing in the passage or in the rest of scripture that contradicts your interpretation. Yet even with this strong view of scripture I am still being told that I am inserting political correctness into the text. This is a shut-down statement and when I ask them to show me how I am doing this, there is no answer.

    But the message is getting through and I give God the glory! Recently I received an email from a Pastor who said that he had never before heard an interpretation that didn’t have contradictions until he viewed the DVDs. He bought another 6 DVD sets as gifts for 6 of his fellow Pastors because he appreciated them so much. He also is giving credit to the Holy Spirit for bringing these passages to light and I am so happy to hear that. That is exactly where the praise should go and is the fruit that I am looking for.

    I also know what you mean about the seeker churches that go overboard to please the sinner. When one caters to one who is unregenerate and who wants to have his/her ears tickled, the meat of the word will never be preached. The gospel will also not be preached in a way that will make it fruitful. My son was asked to leave a church where the gospel was not being preached because it was considered offensive. For over a year he worked with the Pastor to try to get him to preach the gospel and not just invite people to pray a prayer to have a “party in their heart”. The mature ones are asked to leave the church if they do not support a watered-down gospel. It is very sad.

  24. Hi Cheryl,

    I strongly disagree with your interpretation of scripture. You are correct that, Nowhere in scripture is there to be a designated “priest of the home”. Then again there is nowhere in scripture is there mention of the trinity either. Why have you bypass when God created man and formed from the rib of the man. She was designated as “Help Meet”, but today we have changed it to say “Help Me”. God didn’t go to Eve because of the sin, but to Adam was given the responsibility for the union. You also bypassed the curse for the sin committed, Is this curse still in effect? We serve a God of order; God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit; Husband, wife, and Children; Jesus the head of man and man the head of woman. There is no two heads in the Body of Christ. Also, if the bible is to be our manual, where is your example in the New Testament church of women in leadership over men in the church?

  25. Ramon,

    The word “Trinity” doesn’t need to be given in scripture because the concept of three persons all called God but only one God is in scripture.  There is absolutely no such concept of “priest in the home” given for the man.  I have a whole section on Genesis and Adam and Eve.  Do a search at the top right hand side of the page in the box called search for “Adam” or “Eve” and you will find what I have written on that subject.

    You said that God didn’t go to Eve regarding her sin.  This is false.  God did speak to Eve about her sin.  God did not speak to Adam and Eve’s sin.  God only spoke to Adam about his own sin.

    There was no “curse” given for the sin except for what God said about death.  The only “curse” was given to the animals and the earth.  Again, read up on what I have written in this blog about these subjects.

    As far as “order” in the Trinity, read on what I have written about the Trinity and the false teaching about Jesus’ eternal subordination.

    As far as “leadership” in the NT, I assume you mean “authority” of one person over another.  I do not believe that the NT gives anyone another over another person.  Instead the leaders are to be “servants” not ones who have “authority over” the flock.  There is a lot on this blog about that topic too.

    I hope this helps.
    Cheryl

  26. Hi Cheryl
    Could you please tell me whether it is the husband or the wife’s responsibility to gather the family for prayer? I have found that some men are just not interested or too “weak” to lead their families in prayer, or perhaps they don’t know how to!! Of course if they have an intimate relationship with the Lord you should think that they would do it automatically. However, that is not the case. Can the wife then step up and gather the family (including her husband) for family prayer? I have done this for years, but then stopped as I felt that my husband is supposed to be the “priest” in the home, and that it was his responsibility. Well to say the least, family prayer time deteriorated to nothing, because he just never gathered us for prayer time. Everyone just carried on praying on their own, but this has harmed our family and left me frustrated and with a lot of anger against my husband. It doesn’t help talking to him as he would do it perhaps for a week and then just fall back again. So, I have decided to step up and take the lead again for family prayer time. Please give me your comments on this!

  27. Marion,
    Welcome! Thanks for asking this question.

    I was raised as a complementarian so I too believed that it was my husband’s responsibility to gather the family for bible reading and prayer. I felt guilty taking his “role”, but whenever I stopped, nothing happened or we would have a few times of bible reading and prayer and then nothing. Nagging helped but not much. Later I read something that said that if I just stopped “usurping” his role, he would eventually see the need and the family would have its proper leadership back. So I stopped. I never took the lead back. Now my kids are grow and have kids of their own. When I finally stopped we lost that family devotion time and we never got it back.

    Since that time I have learned that there is nothing in the bible that talks about the husband as priest of the home. It is not the responsibility of just one person to bring the Lord into the daily life of the home. I feel bad that I too tried to get my husband to do something that was my responsibility as well and we all could have benefited as a godly example for my grandchildren if I would not have listened to those who told me that what I was doing is unscriptural.

    What I have learned since I was a young mom is that my husband does best in speaking about spiritual matters when I take the lead and he can participate. He is very good at participating. His family never had family devotions. My family always had family devotions and so it was something I dearly missed when I stayed on the side lines.

    The way I look at it now is that God gave one of us the strong desire for family bible reading and prayer. That one person was me. I then had a greater responsibility to fulfill my mandate or at least an equal responsibility. What I should have done is just kept up the family devotion time and let my husband participate. This is where he felt comfortable and the children saw him as a role model by his participation. He didn’t need to lead. I was capable of that. When we all work out our own gifts, the body is encouraged and we all grow. I no longer think that things are someone else’s responsibility. If I am the one who has the desire, I take responsibility. This is the biblical way and it doesn’t put my husband down because he has not been gifted the way I have.

    I hope this helps a little!
    Cheryl

  28. Hi Cheryl
    Thanks a lot for your input! Your reply has really helped me seeing things in a different light. I have been struggling with this for years, and have begun to wonder if it was the sole responsibility of a man to be the priest of the home, thus my question. What really spoke to me is what you’ve said about us having different gifts complementing each other! My husband are for instance much stronger in other things than what I am, and so brings balance in those areas where I am weaker! Thank you again, and may God bless you in your ministry!!

  29. Genesis 5:2 “male and female created he them, and blessed them, and called their name Adam, in the day when they were created. ”

    This is the clue. He created Adam and she was inside Adam but God called the unit before He separated them into two bodies, Adam.

  30. The role of women in the church is often referenced to in the Old Testament, by those advocating such. In Romans 15:4 says that the Old Testament is for our learning! The church was not established until Acts 2 and the church is to be governed according to what was written. There is no example of a woman in leadership over men or preaching in the church. If Noah had not followed God’s instructions in the building the ark, it would not be the ark and it would not be recognized by God. Likewise, if we deviate from the instructions given in the New Testament for the church, God does not recognize it, also!

  31. Ramon,
    Welcome!
    It is certainly important to follow God’s instructions and that is why those who fail to follow God’s instructions are following man’s rules and not God’s rules. Those who stop women from serving the body of Christ when God’s instructions are that all are to use their gifts for the common good, find themselves following man’s rules. God has never forbidden women to follow him in whatever gifts He gives them, nor has he instructed the church to silence women’s gifts.

  32. You are correct in the gifts that a woman may possess, but the qualifications are very clear in the work of an elder and deacon. Paul instructed the older women to teach the younger women and children. Today, if this was being done how different our society would be. Cheryl , can you give me the scripture that permits the woman to occupy those roles?

  33. Ramon,
    Well if as you say that the “qualifications” that exclude people are very clear, then surely you must agree that no single man may do the work of an elder and no married man who does not have children may do the work of an elder, correct?

    In the Christian faith, as all of us are “sons” of God, there is no restriction to any unless the restriction is clearly stated. If there is a sin that lists a woman being an elder, then surely it can be shown to me. If it is a sin that a single man is an elder, then show that to me. If not, then we should not restrict what God has not forbidden.

  34. A single man cannot be an elder either nor a husband that does not have any children. How else would he demonstrate that he rules his household well? However, you are correct about sons of God, but that does not pertain to this subject. In fact the term “sons of God” is mention 6 times in the New Testament, but not once in Timothy and Titus. Now, can a woman assume the title of the husband? If so, where is that in the bible? If Christ is the head of the church and the husband the head of the wife, then they would be interchangeable according to your interpretation. This is a reminder that you are responsible for your interpretation, but God is responsible for His word.

  35. Ramon,
    Then of course we must also exclude any men whose wives have died. They too are unqualified because they are no longer husbands. I am sure that you tell all of the pastors who are not fathers and unmarried or widowed men that they are sinning against God’s rules, right? Even Paul wasn’t qualified to be an elder was he?

    The issue of “husband of one wife” is the issue of marital faithfulness (if one is married) and a married man is to have his household in order (if he has children). Surely Paul was able to demonstrate that he was able to shepherd the sheep without having children, wasn’t he?

    I have no idea what you are talking about when you say “they would be interchangeable according to your interpretation”. If you mean that husbands and wives are interchangeable, I didn’t say anything like that. IF that is not what you mean, I am totally lost.

    We are all responsible to study to show ourselves approved unto God a workman who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. Scripture interprets scripture and a prohibition is different than moral qualifications.

    God is responsible for His laws and His rules and He has never yet condemned one of his female “sons” for using their God-given gifts for the benefit of the body of Christ.

  36. Ladies I think we made have missed the point a little. Please forgive me for putting in my two cents as well. Understand first that I do not dominate my wife nor is she subject to me. However, Paul says that it is better for a man not to be married so that he may follow Christ without the distractions of being married. He also says that if a man has no self control (that is over his sexual desires) it would be better for him to marry. Furthermore he also says that “But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.” (1 Corinthians 11:3)

    I do not take this to mean that women have no place in the priesthood just that the man is the head of the family priesthood. As head, men are in a unique prayer position. They, and only they, can offer prayer protection and covering to their wives and children. Nobody else is in the unique position to offer that protection. Yes women may and should pray for their own protection, but I as a man am not in the position to pray over another man’s wife and children, only my own. This is my personal chore as the husband to my wife and father to my children. Very few times has God been witnessed speaking to women directly and He does to men rather often.

    Thank you for reading and I hope I haven’t stirred up muddied the water too bad.

  37. Cheryl,
    Let me get right into it. The qualifications for elder are quite clear and leave no room for what ifs. Furthermore, there is to be a plurality of elders in each church. (1 Tim 5:17 and Titus 1:5) Paul never identified himself that he was an elder, but he was a minister, who could be single. So if you follow the bible it would exclude the groups that you have identified. I am not the one to point out another man’s sin, the sin is against God and not me.
    Again, where are you getting the ifs?
    Cheryl:
    “The issue of “husband of one wife” is the issue of marital faithfulness (if one is married) and a married man is to have his household in order (if he has children).”
    Response:
    Where does the bible say that if he has a wife or children? When was Paul pastoring or shepherding? While he was in chains? Please send me a scriptural reference of Paul’s pastoring?

    Cheryl:
    I have no idea what you are talking about when you say “they would be interchangeable according to your interpretation”. If you mean that husbands and wives are interchangeable, I didn’t say anything like that. IF that is not what you mean, I am totally lost.
    Response:
    If women could assume the role of pastor or elder, then they should be able to assume the role of husband, right? Interchangeable

    Cheryl:
    God is responsible for His laws and His rules and He has never yet condemned one of his female “sons” for using their God-given gifts for the benefit of the body of Christ.
    Response:
    You and I will be judged for what is written in the scriptures. His commandments are not grievous and they are very clear. How do you know he has not condemned those women? Judgment Day must have come and gone and both of us missed it. I will close with this scripture:

    Matthew 7
    13. Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:
    14. Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.
    I have to take the narrow way and to be in the few!
    Also, Brad was on point!

  38. I personally believe that the man is the head of the of the woman and Christ is the head of the man as the bible states but a lot of church men clearly misunderstand what the term Priest and priest of house means, I do find this more prevalent however among black men, who think that women are there foot stool, and should be talked to any and any way and should shut up, have not voice. are
    disrespected and is in the pulpit on a Sunday morning behaving as if they are little Gods over these women because they are the only one God talks to. It’s time to put a stopping to this kind of behaviour and read with understanding not with what we want to interpret it to be. At lot of men are miss interpreting the Bible to suit there own selfish need and this is wrong.

  39. @Ramon (just in case you come back to this article and its comments)

    The qualifications for elders and deacons in the Greek New testament are by no means for men only. In fact they are completely gender neutral.

    (If you are interested in this, click on my name which will take you to my site where there is an article about Paul’s qualifications for church leader.)

  40. Marg,

    It would be unneccesary for me to read anything other than the scriptures. If you are saying it is gender neutral it would be clearly stated in the scriptures. Paul was very specific when he gave Titus and Timothy these instructions. How could it be gender neutral when you must be the HUSBAND OF ONE WIFE? The Greek word for man in 1 Tim 3 does not allow for gender neutral. Again, where is your example in the scriptures for you position?

  41. Ramon,

    Your interpretation would exclude widowed men from being church leaders. On the contrary, Paul says that being single enables some believers to serve God better (1 Corinthians 7:32-35).

    “I commend to you our sister Phoebe, a deacon of the church at Cenchreae, so that you may welcome her in the Lord as is fitting for the saints, and help her in whatever she may require from you, for she has been a benefactor of many and of myself as well” (Rom. 16:1-2).

    Paul highly commended and respected Phoebe. He called her a “sister,” “deacon,” and “benefactor” to the church at Cenchreae as well as a sister and benefactor to Paul.
    The notable thing about diakonos or “deacon” being used to describe Phoebe is that it is the masculine form of the word used to describe a woman. It is the SAME word Paul uses when he calls Timothy and Titus “servants” or “deacons” of their respective churches. Another thing that makes this phrase stand out is that Phoebe is called the “deacon of the church of Cenchreae.” This is the ONLY place in the New Testament where ‘diakonos’ is followed by the name of a specific congregation. This is the only place linking a specific person’s ministry with a specific church.

    At the beginning of 1 Timothy 5:1-2 “presbutiro” is used as an adjective for BOTH men and women.

  42. @Ramon The only time that the word “man” is used in 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:6-9 is in the phrase “a one woman man”. This is often translated into English as “the husband of one wife”.

    While this may sound like a cop out, “a one woman man” really was a common Greek idiom.

    If someone said that they were “so hungry they could eat a horse”, most English speaking people would know not to take this idiom literally.

    This phrase, “a one woman man”, is an idiom found on numerous sepulchral [gravesite] inscriptions celebrating the virtue of a surviving spouse that had not remarried. By noting that he or she was married only once, it suggests the virtue of extraordinary fidelity. (A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, 3rd Edition, Walter Bauer, revised & edited by F.W. Danker, University of Chicago Press, 2000, p292.) Paul uses the phrase “a one man woman” in this context when writing about widows in 1 Timothy 5:9. These women had been married only once, their husband had died, and they were now single and celibate. The New Revised Standard Version somewhat captures this meaning in their translation of this phrase as “married only once” in 1 Timothy 3:2 and 5:9. However the idiom, “a one women man”, has a broader context than that. The real implication being marital fidelity.

    The phrase, “a one woman man”, may actually be generically applied to a group of both men and women as can be seen from its use, for example, in 1 Timothy 3:12. 1 Timothy 3:8-10 is about men ministers; 3:11 is about women ministers; and 3:12-13 is about both men and women ministers. Chrysostom wrote that the phrase a one woman man in 1 Timothy 3: 12 ”. . . must be understood therefore to relate to Deaconesses [women ministers]. For that order is necessary and useful and honourable in the Church”. (Chrysostom, Homilies on 1 Timothy, Homily XI)

    I fully respect and acknowledge the authority and inspiration of the Scriptures, however the Scriptures were written during times that were very different from ours, to cultures that were very different to ours, and using languages that are different from ours. It is dangerous (and unwise) to ignore good scholarship that sheds light on culture, history and language that can help us to understand the meaning and intent of the Bible authors.

    Moreover, several women are mentioned by name in the New Testament who were house church leaders: Chloe, Nympha, Priscilla (with her husband Aquila) etc. Other female ministers include Phoebe, Junia, Euodia and Syntyche, etc. Paul had no problem with women being ministers.
    http://newlife.id.au/equality-and-gender-issues/new-testament-women-church-leaders/

  43. Marg,

    God’s word transcend time and culture. Just because women roles have changed in the world does not mean they change in the Body of Christ. It is apparent that the church has been influenced by the world, because of this debate. We have come to a point where we agree to disagree. I think that those who believe the scripture in this content is gender neutral is misguided. Your gender neutral would apply to every aspect of life. Such as the women being the head of the family unit or the woman the findth a man finds a good thing. Think about this the blood line always lie with the male child. In addition, the term one woman man does not mean gender neutral, since the English is Husband of one wife. Can a woman be a husband? Can the man be the wife? Many twist the scriptures to suit themselves, as I believe is happening here.

  44. @Ramon I agree that God’s word transcends time and culture. As I’ve mentioned there were women ministers in the New Testament church. This is not something new. In fact women were later prevented from being allowed to be ministers because of male-dominated culture, not because of plain Biblical teaching. How can you account for Bible women such as Priscilla, Nympha, Phoebe or Chloe, etc?

    Also, just because the passages I have mentioned are gender neutral in the Greek, it does not mean that other passages that mention men and women are gender neutral. I am actually not twisting the scriptures at all. The phrase “a one woman man” really is an idiomatic expression, but I can fully understand that that may be difficult to accept.

    Also, almost all statements about the infallability of scripture specify that scipture is infallible only in its original languages. English translations, simply because they are translations, do not always convey the Greek meaning with complete accuracy.

    Jesus received his humanity from a woman, he was part of the line of King David through Mary.

    The Bible never says that the husband is the head of the family. It says that the husband is the head of the wife. To say that the husband is the head of the family is adding to scripture, or twisting scripture, or making assumptions that cannot be backed up by scripture.

    Anyway, I’ve said all I want to on this subject.
    Warmest regards, Ramon.

  45. “God’s word transcend time and culture. Just because women roles have changed in the world does not mean they change in the Body of Christ. It is apparent that the church has been influenced by the world, because of this debate.”
    Ramon,
    It appears you may have fallen for the myth of the stay-at-home-mother/father as sole bread winner as being the original Biblical model.
    From the history I’ve read, the notion that women stay at home with their main purpose being to raise children and tend to them for all their physical needs until they were on their own, came about only after the Industrial Revolution when men started going off to work somewhere other than on the family farm or in their own cottage industry. Prior to that fathers had a major role in raising children, especially sons, who had reached an age where they were capable of helping him in his work. In the same way the daughters would help their mother in her work. Because for both sexes, that would be the work they could expect to be doing for the rest of their lives. These sorts of divisions of labor are cultural and economic responses related to the need to survive. Cultural practices change for various reasons -note the Prov. 31 woman was also a business woman who considered a field and bought it on her own, and planted a vineyard with her own earnings. She could bring home the bacon AND fry it (or have her servants cook it) and they still called her blessed. The industrious woman of Proverbs 31 was a manager, business owner, and real estate agent.
    Cheryl, nor others commenting here argue for a genderless society.
    Of course there are gender differences designed by God – only women can bear/nurse children and only men can impregnate women. But how does any of this apply to leadership in church or home? Both genders have advantages and disadvantages over the other, a mutual effort offers the best of both, including access to insights the other may not have. It was not good that the “adam” should be alone. That was the only aspect of creation that was not good. The woman’s ‘help’ was to allay the aloneness of the human and to be his equal. She was the “ezer kenegdo” meaning “strong help that would stand facing him.” Adam’s “bone of my bones, flesh of my flesh” affirms “mutuality” evident in the way that humanity functions. As long as one depends on someone else for the actualization of one’s totality, that dependence creates equality of purpose that transcends status.

  46. Paul calls Pheobe a “deacon.” Paul also says a deacon must be “husband of one wife.” So– either “husband of one wife” is gender-inclusive, or Pheobe was a man.
    Simple logic.

  47. Don’t be too narrow on the definitions of greek words. Paul may have called Pheobe a deacon OR he may have called her a ‘servant’. Both are legitimate translations seen throughout the NT. Likewise, 1 Tim 3:11 could legitimately be ‘wives’ or ‘women deaconesses’. There are pro’s and con’s in both arguments.

    What is clear, is that women were never overseers nor were permitted to teach publically to the Churches.

    Priscilla along with her husband taught Apollos, but it was privately. The text is explicit that ‘they took him away’.

    As for any other examples Egals want to throw out there, they are pure conjecture and historical revisioning. We have no evidence that the ‘deacons’ were responsible for the sheparding of the Church or the teaching of the scriptures, so even if Pheobe was a deacon, her position/work does not contradict the traditional view of 1 Tim 2:9-15, since NT deacons were not responsible in that area.

    Kostenberger has written a good article on all the texts where famale names are mentioned in ‘The Gospel to the Nations’. Anyone serious in studying the scriptures should read this…from both sides. The arguments for women leaders in the NT beyond perhaps Pheobe as a deacon is stepping beyond what the scriptures teach.

  48. Marg,

    The family is the union between the husband and wife. They shall become one flesh. What is your biblical definition of family? If the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, this supports the headship of the husband. And there could only be one head.

    Yes, I am done with this subject as well.

  49. @Mark
    While the Greek word diakonos literally means “servant”, Paul only ever used diakonos in his letters in the context of a minister. It is blatant bias to change the translation from “minister” or “deacon” to “servant” just because it applies to a woman – Phoebe.

    It is not clear at all, either from New Testament scripture or early church history, that women were never permitted to be overseers or to teach publicly. As well as Priscilla, other women are mentioned by name who obviously were leaders of house churches. Women such as Chloe (1 Cor 1:11) and Nympha (Col 4:15). If they were not the leader, why did Paul mention these women, and not the men?

    Other women such as Junia (Rom 16:7), Euodia and Syntyche (Php 4:2-3) obviously had significant ministries too. As did several other women mentioned in Romans chapter 16.

    [I have provided a link to my article on New Testament Women Church Leaders at the end of comment 48.]

    What is the difference between a women teaching publicly or privately? Do you think it is permissible for a woman to teach men privately? As a church leader, along with her husband, Priscilla would have had many opportunities to teach; whether that was privately or publicly, formally or informally. It may well have been that Priscilla’s ministry was more prominent than her husband’s. (Acts 18:18-19, 26; Rom 16:3-4; 1 Cor 16:19; 2 Tim 4:19)

    My article about Priscilla is here: http://newlife.id.au/equality-and-gender-issues/did-priscilla-teach-apollos/

    @Ramon All I am saying is that you seem to think I am twisting scriptures. I am just pointing out that if you think the scriptures say that the husband is the head of the family then you are twisting scripture. (Or adding to it, or interpreting it, etc.) The scriptures only teach that the husband is the head of the wife.

    Some people interpret that to mean that the husband has spiritual authority over his wife. However the scriptures NEVER actually say that either. There are more than a few examples where God bypassed husbands and male guardians to speak directly to women. I have written an article about these women here: http://newlife.id.au/equality-and-gender-issues/bible-women-with-spiritual-authority/

  50. @Ramon I didn’t answer your question.

    Marriage is the union between the husband and wife. I wouldn’t say that “family is the union between the husband and wife”.

    A family can include many more people than just a husband and wife. It can include children and other relatives and dependents. In New Testament times, a household could also include slaves.

  51. Mark,
    The point is that he used the exact same word for a group that he also said had to be “husband of one wife.” The Greek masculine form was gender inclusive as a rule. A group of women with even one man in it could be referred to as “men.” So “husband of one wife” is inclusive of “wife of one husband.” If it weren’t, Phoebe could not be in that group.

  52. Mark,
    Yes, and as with any word that has multiple meanings, people typically assume one of the possible meanings which supports their current understanding, and resist any possible meaning that counters it.
    I encourage you to take your own advice – “Don’t be too narrow on the definitions of greek words.”

    Do you believe 1 Peter 2:5, 9 applies to only male believers?

  53. Thanks Marg,

    But as for your claim that Paul ONLY ever uses diakonos to mean ‘minister’ or ‘deacon’, what do you base that on? PLease provide your claim with the textual proof and show why every instance of it’s use must be as you claim?

    Kristen,
    Can you likewise back up your overt claims? What evidence is there that things must translate and thus mean what you claim?

    Kay,
    I agreed that diakonos can mean ‘deacon’ in certain contextual circumstances and i likewise agreed that 1 Tim 3:11 could be refering to women deacons. BUT THAT IS NOT THE ONLY POSSIBILITY so to say it is or at least assume and promote it is, is misleading, that’s all.

  54. Mark, it seems to me that it’s encumbant on you to explain why “diakonos” doesn’t mean the same thing when it refers to Phoebe as it does when it refers to a “diakonos” having to be husband of one wife. The words are the same in the original text. It’s up to you to show why they don’t refer to the same thing.

  55. “I agreed that diakonos can mean ‘deacon’ in certain contextual circumstances and i likewise agreed that 1 Tim 3:11 could be refering to women deacons. BUT THAT IS NOT THE ONLY POSSIBILITY so to say it is or at least assume and promote it is, is misleading, that’s all.”

    Mark,
    I’m glad you acknowledge that in your view, both comps and egals have viable possibilities in interpretations.

    I’m not trying to mislead anyone by sharing the other options. What is the problem with getting all the information out for consideration?

  56. Speak where the bible speaks and where the bible is silent then so should we.

    Ramon,
    I agree as in God gave them rule over the earth and as in God did not give Adam rule over Eve.
    But where do you say the bible speaks and where do you say it is silent?

  57. Ramon,

    The bible is completely silent on the husband being the sole head of the family, but yet you say that we should be silent where the bible does not speak and at the same time tell us that the husband is the final rule of the home?? Please explain.

  58. I agreed that diakonos can mean ‘deacon’ in certain contextual circumstances and i likewise agreed that 1 Tim 3:11 could be refering to women deacons. BUT THAT IS NOT THE ONLY POSSIBILITY so to say it is or at least assume and promote it is, is misleading, that’s all.

    Well, both interpretations cannot be right. One must be wrong and so the one who holds the wrong interpretation is misleading knowingly or not. What absolute exclusion can be made, again? Someone please infrom.

  59. @Mark
    Here is EVERY instance where Paul uses the word diakonos (sg) or diakonoi (pl) in all the grammatical cases that are used in his New Testament letters:

    Romans 13:4 twice (civil ministers/leaders/authorities); Romans 15:8 (Jesus); Romans 16:1 (Phoebe);
    1 Corinthians 3:5 (Apollos, Paul);
    2 Corinthians 3:6 and 6:4 (Paul, etc); 2 Corinthians 11:15 twice (Satan’s ministers/servants);
    Galatians 2:17 (Jesus Christ);
    Ephesians 3:7 (Paul); Ephesians 6:21 (Tychicus);
    Philippians 1:1 (traditionally translated as deacons);
    Colossians 1:7 (Epaphras); Colossians 1:23 and 25 (Paul); Colossians 4:7 (Tychicus);
    1 Timothy 3:8 and 12 (traditionally translated as deacon); 1 Timothy 4:6 (Timothy).

    Perhaps this will show you just how unjustified it is to think that Phoebe was not a genuine minister (in the fullest sense of the word). All the other occasions of the word in Paul’s letters are in the context of ministers, even ministry leaders – even of Jesus Christ.

    Phoebe was a minister (diakonos) of the church at Cenchrea, and also a leader/patroness (prostatis) of many (Romans 16:1-2). Prostatis literally means “stands before”. To translate this word as “helper” or “assistant” is another injustice.

  60. @Ramon

    “Speak where the Bible speaks and where the Bible is silent then so should we.”

    If you follow this precept then how is it that you believe that the husband is the head of the family. I do not know of any scripture that teaches this. (I expect that we have a different understanding of the meaning of “head” also.)

    God gave families a father and a mother to lead together and share the responsibilites and chores of family life. (It is very hard and lonely to lead a family on your own. Just ask any single parent.) I sincerely hope that Cheryl doesn’t mind if I post another link. http://newlife.id.au/equality-and-gender-issues/leading-together-in-the-home/

  61. Thanks Marg,

    But i’m still missing your point. Are you trying to say that Pheobe fulfilled the same function as Paul, Timothy and even Jesus?

    I could hardly think so. Jesus became a ‘servant’ to the circumcised. Timothy and Paul were both servants of Christ. It is unjustified to think that the office of ‘deacon’ is the same as simply being called a servant. But that is what i am understanding you saying. Is this correct?

    Now in regards to Pheobe i can grant that she was a servant of the church (like most of the other NT uses of the word). I can even possibly grant that she was a deacon (based on 1 Tim 3:11 where it may refer to women deacons) but i cannot grant that all NT uses of diakonos in each of the context mean the same thing. The contextual evidence does not lead this way. In some circumstances, deacon is acceptable, in others it is not and servant is much more contextually appropriate. Pheobe could go either way without much disruption to my theology.

    As i understand the NT, the office of ‘deacon’ were never responsible for the overseeing/shepharding of the church (as were the elders). The Book of Acts confirms this. Thus the elders are the responsible ones for the public teaching of the scriptures from which women are restricted.

    I am interested in how you understand the office of deacon? In what way does it differ to elders? This may be where the confusion lies.

    Considering the various translatable options, each context shows us which way to translate re: servant or deacon. You seem to be confusing or combining the two.

  62. Pinklight,

    Hi! The whole argument regarding deacons i think is generally irrelevant to the comp/egal debate. Pheobe could easily have been a deacon without disrupting the teaching of Paul in 1 Tim 2 (understood the traditional way).

    So as much as egals may use Pheobe as a proof text, it is simply irrelevant in arguing against a comp since even if she was a deacon, that church office as shown in the NT was not responsible for public scriptual teaching.

    Therefore if i understand Pheobe to be a deacon, by necessity and to be consistent i must understand 1 Tim 3:11 to be referring to women not simply wives of male deacons. However if i understanding Pheobe to be a ‘servant’ as per other NT references to people, then i can contextually and grammatically argue that 1 Tim 3:11 refers to wives and not women deacons. I don’t think we can conclusively know just from the grammar itself.

    But like i said, it is irrelevant for the discussion unless one distorts the NT teaching of the function of a ‘deacon’ and gives it a public teaching function and spiritual oversight (which it never has).

    Hope that clarifies my position! This is why appealing to Priscilla is irrelevant also, since her ‘teaching’ was again private with her husband, not the pastoral oversight and biblical teaching discussed in 1 Tim 2:9-15. Similar to the fact that we are to teach each other with ‘psalms, music and spiritual songs’. Again women and men both do this without contradicting 1 Tim. Prophesy is another same example.

    Paul’s restriction in 1 Tim 2 is for the elders of the church who have the spiritual resposibility of preaching. Egalitarians confuse the comp position by combining all the different ‘teaching’ elements in the NT as if they are the same thing. Perhaps if comps weren’t so misunderstood (or deliberately mis-handled) egals might not think we are so patriarchal and suppressive 🙂

  63. Mark,

    If you allow that Phoebe “may” have been a deacon, and that 1 Tim 3 “may” refer to women deacons, then it follows that “husband of one wife” “may” be gender inclusive. And if it is, then it is gender inclusive when used of overseers just as it is when used of deacons.
    It seems to me that you’ve either got to deny any possibility that Paul considered Phoebe a deacon or that he was talking about women deacons, or you’ve got to admit that Paul does not explicitly gender-restrict overseers by the use of the term “husband of one wife.”
    I don’t think there is any basis on which anyone can authoritatively state that Paul intended deacons to be only male, even though he used the term “husband of one wife.” There is clear documentation that the early church did, in fact, utilize female deacons.
    What I’m saying is that using the phrase “husband of one wife” as a way to categorically deny that women can be overseers, simply is not a very good argument given the use of the same phrase for deacons.

  64. If you allow that Phoebe “may” have been a deacon, and that 1 Tim 3 “may” refer to women deacons, then it follows that “husband of one wife” “may” be gender inclusive. And if it is, then it is gender inclusive when used of overseers just as it is when used of deacons.

    This is great!
    I’m not all here yet…still tired, but I see that Kristen is awake!
    More coffee…
    😛

  65. “Paul’s restriction in 1 Tim 2 is for the elders of the church who have the spiritual resposibility of preaching. Egalitarians confuse the comp position by combining all the different ‘teaching’ elements in the NT as if they are the same thing. Perhaps if comps weren’t so misunderstood (or deliberately mis-handled) egals might not think we are so patriarchal and suppressive”

    Mark,
    This verse is about “teaching” – where do you see “preaching” in these verses?
    How does any “plain reading” manufacture an “office” out of 1 Tim. 2:11-14?
    How is it that the Greek adjective presbuteros, (“older” or “elderly”) mysteriously became a noun, represented in the English text by an official sounding title, i.e., elder? What can be more misleading than the deliberate translation of a word to justify a practice; thus changing the Bible to suit a human system, rather than changing such a system to suit the Bible.

    “Rebuke not an elder, (presbuteros) but intreat him as a father; and the younger men as brothers; The elder (presbuteros) women as mothers; the younger as sisters, with all purity.” (1Tm:5:1-2)
    The context of this scripture is completely relational, not institutional.

    “I urge the elders: like shepherds, tend the flock of God among you. Watch over it. Don’t shepherd because you must, but do it voluntarily for God. Don’t shepherd by ruling over those entrusted to your care, but become examples to the flock.” (1Peter 5:2-3)
    When the power of example is gone, all you have left is the tyranny of demanded conformity.

    We have Timothy being instructed to relate to the elderly with respect. In an ecclesiastical, hierarchical context, where authority is positional rather than relational, the issue of age is irrelevant – it all depends upon who has the “title” and position. In today’s institutional churches it is perceived as a compromise of a pastor’s authority to relate to any untitled individual as his senior.

    “But I’m writing these things to you so that if I’m delayed, you’ll know how you should behave in God’s household. It is the church of the living God and the backbone and support of the truth.” (1Tim.3:14-15)
    Scripture lists two places where they taught, out in public and in homes. In the NT there is not one mention of anyone teaching or preaching in a church building. We’ve been over this before.

  66. Hello Mark @72
    I don’t know…unless I’m forgetting something (which I’m great at doing) looks to me like this is what it comes down to:

    It seems to me that you’ve either got to deny any possibility that Paul considered Phoebe a deacon or that he was talking about women deacons, or you’ve got to admit that Paul does not explicitly gender-restrict overseers by the use of the term “husband of one wife.”

    And thanks for the reminder Kristen!! A long time ago when I was studying for myself on Phoebe and 1 Tim 3 on deacons, I had come to the same realization. And I felt like I was alone and lost in my studies while thinking things through at the time lol as in “what planet am I on” lol because I couldn’t understand why CBMW “hadn’t figured that one out.” (Or had they…..?) lol

    I’m still tired… I’m outte!

  67. It was nice to get to exchange a few words with you Mark, but I cannot see one point you’ve made in @72 that doesn’t fall to the ground based on @73. So untell you can answer @73, I just don’t know what to say.
    Good to see you here! 🙂

  68. Hi pinklight,
    It’s true @73 nails the logical fallacy. But it’s very difficult to step out of the institutionalized church box. Many people get mired in cognitive dissonance.

  69. Hi all,

    Re 73,
    It’s easy on two accounts. I can legitimately claim that verse 11 refers to wives and Pheobe simply a servant. That is issue number one and is a fair and legitimate interpretation.

    Number 2: Even if one allows verse 11 to be referring to ‘women deacons’ it can not be denied that verse 12 is also referring to the opposite (back to men). In fact, most commentators with any sense realise this. Either way, within the discussion of deacons, only one verse talks of women, be that wives or female deacons.

    Therefore, no, ‘husband of one wife’ is not ‘gender inclusive’ which is an outlandish claim Kristen has made un-supported. Within the discussion of deacons verses 8-10, 12-13 refer to males and verse 11 refers to wives or deaconesses.

    Unless Kristen can show why it should be understood as gender inclusive this discussion will become irrelevant. Since when does ‘husband’= husband and wife and wife=wife and husband. It’s almost ridiculous trying to even consider that. Where’s the proof Kristen?

  70. Kay,

    You need to understand ‘elder’ in conjunction with ‘bishop’ (see for example Titus 1) to see that ‘elder’ and ‘bishop’ were synonymous for the same function/office within the Church.

    1Tim 3 is also very clear on the offices of elders and deacons. Considering the context to 1 Tim 2:9-15 the connection is easily made.

    I understand your point though, since ‘elder’ in some contexts simply means ‘older people’ or ‘elderly’ as in 1 Tim 5 or Titus 2. It’s the context again that determines the correct interpretation (similar to deacon/servant). You can’t just say all uses only mean ‘older people’, nor can you say all mean ‘elder’ as in the office of!

    By the way, no, i understand the priesthood of believers to include all believers, male/female, young/old in line with the reformation giants of Luther and Calvin.

  71. What happened to my comment? I clicked “submit comment” but it disappeared!

    Hi Kay 🙂
    Yeah and that’s a depressing thought.

    t h i n k o u t s i d e t h e b o x

    lol

    Therefore, no, ‘husband of one wife’ is not ‘gender inclusive’ which is an outlandish claim Kristen has made un-supported.

    Mark,
    Can you point out to me where Kristen even made that claim? 😉

    It’s easy on two accounts. I can legitimately claim that verse 11 refers to wives and Pheobe simply a servant. That is issue number one and is a fair and legitimate interpretation.

    Okay, so for you it is or is not possible that Phoebe was a Deacon? You had said, “Pheobe could easily have been a deacon…”

  72. Third time’s a charm!

    Kay,
    You’re right and those are depressing thoughts.

    Mark,
    1) When did Kristen even make this claim? “Therefore, no, ‘husband of one wife’ is not ‘gender inclusive’ which is an outlandish claim Kristen has made un-supported.”
    2) Is it possible or not that Phoebe was a deacon? You had said, “Pheobe could easily have been a deacon”

  73. Mark,

    You’re drew a conclusion that Kristen was making a claim when she did not. And what does that say to me about the conclusions you draw in regards to your comp position?

  74. Actually, Pinklight, I did make a claim that the phrase translated “husband of one wife” in most English translations is indeed gender-inclusive in the original Greek. The actual phrase is a Greek idiom, literally rendered “one-woman man.” The thing is that the masculine gender in the Greek language is inclusive, just as the masculine gender in the English language used to be. Even today in English, we still understand the word “men” in some contexts to mean “humans” — “men and women” — particularly if we’re reading an old book (including most translations of the Bible).
    It is my understanding that the only time you can use the feminine gender in the Greek language is if you’re talking about a group that is all women; hence, the use of the term “wife of one husband” (literally, “one-man woman”) to describe qualified widows (females only) later in the same letter to Timothy. But if you have a group of both women and men, and you are going to talk about them as a group, you would call them “men,” and if you were going to talk about them being faithful to their spouses, you would call them “one-woman men.”
    Here is a link to Philip Payne, Greek scholar, explaining this (and quoting certain complementarian Greek scholars who admit that “one-woman man,” in and of itself, does not exclude women from the group.
    http://www.pbpayne.com/?p=426

  75. I am not convinced of the traditional understanding of the “office of deacon”. I believe that this office was a later church development. The men in Acts 6 were never referred to as “deacons” (diakonoi) in the Bible. Also, the understanding of the role of “deacon” varies between denominations. Because of these factors, I avoid using the English word “deacon” in my writings. I also avoid translating diakonos as “servant” when commenting on Paul, because Paul clearly only used diakonos in the context of ministers.

    The New Testament tells us that episkopoi (bishops/overseers) and presbuteroi (elders) were people who had oversight responsibilities over a congregation – they were senior ministers. Paul and Timothy obviously had leadership and oversight over congregations, however they were also referred to as diakonoi. Paul frequently described himself as both an apostolos and a diakonos. Diakonos is really just a generic term for minister. This means that bishops/overseers, elders, and even apostles, were also diakonoi, that is, ministers.

    Many diakonoi-ministers did not have oversight ministries. However, the Didache 15:1 tells us that both episkopoi and diakonoi functioned as prophets and teachers in early church times.

    I can see no reason to assume that Phoebe’s ministry was any less significant than the ministries of Epaphras or Tychicus. Certainly the ministry of Paul, and in particular the ministry of our Lord Jesus Christ, were exceptional!

    Mark, I am surprised by your suggestion that I may be comparing Phoebe with Paul or Jesus. I simply provided an impartial list of scriptures that used the word diakonos or diakonoi. I did not leave anything out; I did not include anything I shouldn’t have. You have made your own observations (perhaps based on your own views of the word “deacon”.)

    The fact that Paul mentions Phoebe, and other women, personally, by name in his letters, indicates that these women had significant “real” ministries. Paul is hardly going to bother with mentioning the names of men and women in his letters who were involved in minor ministries, or who were not well known to the church.

    Mark, you say, “Now in regards to Phoebe I can grant that she was a servant of the church . . . “ “Minister” and “servant” is the same word – diakonos! And we can see by Paul’s use of the word in the list (comment 69), that when he specifically names a person as being a diakonos, he always and only uses it in the context of a person with a real, significant ministry. Why should Phoebe be the only exception?

    *Moreover, Phoebe simply cannot have been both a servant, in the common sense of the word, and a leader-patron-benefactor (prostatis) (Rom 16:1-2)!*

    Phoebe is undisputedly a diakonos. It was Paul’s choice of word to describe her. Paul also called her a prostatis which literally means “stand before”. This indicates that Phoebe was a leader (cf Young’s Literal Translation and the CEV). At the very least, prostatis can mean that Phoebe was “a patron-benefactor of many, including me [Paul]” (Rom 16:2.)

    As I’ve said, I see no reason at all to assume that Phoebe’s ministry was in any way less significant than the ministries of Tychicus or Epaphras. For anyone to single out Phoebe from the list of ministers (in comment 69), and suggest that her ministry was somehow not on par with some of the other ministers, seems to me to show unaccountable prejudice.

  76. @Kristen 86
    Thank you so much for your excellent link regarding “a one woman man” typically translated as “the husband of one wife”! I love it!

    Here is an excerpt:
    “Two of the most prominent complementarians acknowledge this phrase does not clearly exclude women. Douglas Moo acknowledges that this phrase need not exclude “unmarried men or females from the office … it would be going too far to argue that the phrase clearly excludes women….” Douglas J. Moo, “The Interpretation of 1 Timothy 2:11–15: A Rejoinder,” TJ 2 NS (1981): 198–222, 211. Thomas Schreiner acknowledges, “The requirements for elders in 1 Tim 3:1–7 and Titus 1:6–9, including the statement that they are to be one-woman men, does not necessarily in and of itself preclude women from serving as elders….” Thomas R. Schreiner’s “Philip Payne on Familiar Ground: A Review of Philip B. Payne, Man and Woman, One in Christ: An Exegetical and Theological Study of Paul’s Letters.” JBMW (Spring 2010): 33–46, 35.
    The closest English equivalent to “one-woman man” is “monogamous,” and it applies to both men and women.”

    May I reiterated what Danker has written on this idiomatic phrase also:

    “mias gunaikos aner, a husband married only once (numerous sepulchral [gravesite] inscriptions celebrate the virtue of a surviving spouse by noting that HE OR SHE was married only once, thereby suggesting the virtue of extraordinary fidelity.)” from A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, 3rd Edition, Walter Bauer, revised & edited by F.W. Danker, University of Chicago Press, 2000, p292. My emphasis.

  77. “You need to understand ‘elder’ in conjunction with ‘bishop’ (see for example Titus 1) to see that ‘elder’ and ‘bishop’ were synonymous for the same function/office within the Church.”
    Mark,
    I do understand that. Thing is – I do not approach the text with the presupposition that “women cannot hold certain offices.”

    I’m glad you see my point about diakonos & presbuteros. Of course, my further point is: there is precious little in the context to render the comp. view unless one approaches these words with the presupposition that “women cannot be elders or deacons.” Especially in light of the priesthood of all believers.

  78. Kristen,
    Thanks for clearing that up, Kristen. You did @52

    Paul calls Pheobe a “deacon.” Paul also says a deacon must be “husband of one wife.” So– either “husband of one wife” is gender-inclusive, or Pheobe was a man.
    Simple logic.

    Sorry Mark, my bad. I was refering to @73.

  79. Marg,

    I simply will have to disagree. I don’t think it is acceptable to translate all the uses of diakonos as ‘minister’. Like i said earlier the context needs to decide the translation. In most of the NT instances, ‘servant’ is a much more logical and better translation. I agree that women had significant ministries, that is not in question. What is in question is in what way discussing Pheobe impacts the discussion. As iv’e stated, it is irrelevant to the comp theology as understood by Paul’s prohibition in 1 Tim 2:9-15.

    Kay,

    Don’t confuse soteriology with ministry. This is the mistake that egals make with Gal 3:28 and as it appears you are making with 1 Peter. ‘Preisthood of all believers’ is discussing soteriology as seen by the context. That is, through the work of Christ the once for all sacrifice was done and all people in Christ can approach God without the need of levitical priests and the sacrificial system. This is true of men, women and children. Yet the NT is clear that there are still differences in roles sanf functions within the church and home.

    Kristen,

    Your position seems contradictory. You want ‘husband of one wife’ to be gender inclusive. Yet you also want ‘gyne’ in verse 11 to mean ‘women deacons’. If both of these were correct it makes Paul’s discussion nonsense. What is the need to talk about ‘women’ in verse 11 IF he has been gender inclusive the whole time? The context simply cannot do what you want it to do otherwise it makes Paul’s discussion irrelevant and stupid. The shift to ‘gyne’ in verse 11 is obvious that the previous discussion therefore has not been applied to them. This is simple logic!

    Note also your own acknowledge that ‘one woman man’ is different to ‘one man woman’ later in the epistle. You have to provide evidence why the context allows it to be gender inclusive. As iv’e said, the shift in verse 11 makes your claim unacceptable, aswell as the prohibition a few verses earlier. I am interested to know how you explain that away.

  80. Hi Mark,
    You said
    “The shift to ‘gyne’ in verse 11 is obvious that the previous discussion therefore has not been applied to them. This is simple logic!”
    I asked a related question a few weeks ago.
    ” But doesn’t the word “likewise” mean that he is now talking about women when he wasn’t before?

    Cheryl answered it this way.
    Craig,
    To answer the question we just need to see what Paul has already said in the epistle. Paul is not excluding people from his instructions when he starts dealing with another “group”. For example just because Paul says in 1 Timothy 2:8 that he wants “men” to pray without wrath and dissension doesn’t mean that he is exempting women. What Paul does in 1 Timothy is join the groups together with the term “likewise” while setting apart kinds of people that have particular issues yet still not exempting them from being a part of the “whole”.

    Why does Paul say “Deacons likewise” in verse 8 when deacons are also a part of 1 Timothy 3:1? It should be obvious that a deacon can desire to be an overseer as “anyone” may desire that work. Yet deacons are treated in a special way within the passage.

    1 Timothy 3:8 (NAS)
    8 Deacons likewise must be men of dignity, not double-tongued, or addicted to much wine or fond of sordid gain,

    If we treat the term “likewise” as if it excludes deacons as possible people who desire to be overseers, then we would come to a false conclusion. Paul isn’t excluding deacons in 3:1 nor is he excluding women in the previous verses either just because he says “likewise”. What he is doing is specifically addressing the concerns of women (a specific group) within the whole.

    So women can desire to be overseers, and Paul lists an additional qualification that specifically deals with an issue that plagues women when he says “likewise” and that added qualification is the issue of gossip. In Titus 2:3 Paul again links women (and specifically older women) with the bad habit of gossip.

    So I would ask if deacons are exempt from the ability to desire to be overseers because Paul lists them in the passage as “likewise”? If the term “likewise” cannot mean that they are excluded in the previous verses just because they have service as a deacon and the term “likewise” is used concerning that “group”, then logically it cannot mark out women as not included in 1 Timothy 3:1 either.

    So if you ask me why did Paul use the term “likewise” with women? I think it was because he was going to add a special qualification that is more apt to be needed to be said when advising women. It is not uncommon for Paul to use this term but it is not meant by him to exclude people from the “whole”.

  81. Thanks Craig,

    But Cheryl appears to be making more out of the ‘likewise’ than it has to mean. This is not un-common though when arguing her position as it needs to push for more from the simple conjunctions in the greek.

    I wouldn’t be happy to push the greek conjunction in this way. It is simply trying to manipulate the simplicity of the word.

    I agree that a ‘deacon’ may therefore become an elder or vice versa, but the two offices are clearly distinct.

    Anyway, my issue is not with the conjunction, that is a simple and moot point. My issue is if verse 1 and following are gender inclusive, why the need to switch to ‘gyne’ in verse 11. To simply say Paul needs to address “a group within the whole” is again making more out of the text than what is there. The natural progression in Paul’s argument is clearly seen i think, he beings with overseers, then deacons and then discusses women deacons or wives for 1 verse in 3:11. Paul gives no indication that he needs to address a group within the whole, this is an interpolation into the text.

  82. Mark, look at the passage again.
    Paul starts talking about deacons in 1 Tim 3:8. First he says deacons must be “reverent, not double-tongued, not given to much wine, not greedy for money.” Then he says in verse 11 that “women” must “likewise” be “reverent, not slanderers, temperate, faithful in all things.” So if “women” here means “women deacons,” then Paul has addressed first men deacons, and then women deacons. And now what does he do? According to your reading, he goes right back to talking about men deacons, and the words about women deacons are sandwiched into the middle of two passages about men deacons. It isn’t until verse 12 that he says, “let deacons be the husbands of one wife,” and so on.
    But it would actually make much more sense for Paul to speak of men deacons in verses 8-10, and then speak of women deacons in verse 11– and then in verse 12, speak of a all deacons as a whole group.
    Why should Paul talk about men, then women, then men again? Why not just say everything he has to say about men, and then go on to talk about women? Doesn’t it make more sense that he would talk about men, then women, and then conclude with remarks about both?
    (BTW, I agree with Craig’s statement that “likewise” means that general statements applied to men deacons do also apply to women– such as that they must “first be tested” before serving as deacons. But verses 8-10 and verse 11 are roughly parallel, with verse 11 basically saying in abbreviated fashion that women deacons must be like men deacons in the areas of reverence, control of their tongues, temperance with use of wine and money, and faithfulness. It is verse 12 that departs from this parallel structure with a statement about deacons’ relationships to their families. Therefore it makes much more sense to think verse 12 was intended for all deacons as a group.)

  83. PS. Did Paul really intend to omit the requirement for faithfulness in marriage for women deacons? Given the parallel nature of the verse directed specifically to women, with the verses to men just before it– then if verse 12 is just to men, Paul was apparently exempting women from any requirement to be faithful to their husbands.
    Does that even make sense?

  84. Kristen,

    Thanks for your imput. It is not uncommon for Paul to divert for a moment from his logical argument (as seen in verse 11) and then return to the original thought (verse 12). There is no exegetical reason i can see why verse 12 must mean ‘all deacons’.

    Re #95, you are really just reaching for straws there. Just because something is not discussed does not mean it isn’t appropriate. Scripture interprets scripture and we know that both men and women should be faithful in marriage. Of course this whole point you made stems from your certain belief that gyne refers to women deacons and not simply wives of male deacons which cannot be proven decisively.
    Waht intrigues me the most is that most mainstream egals argue that ‘one woman man’ is becasue men had more than one wife at that time (in fact iv’e seen Cheryl write that somewhere also), yet now you want to apply that phrase to women. Which way do you want it? When one argument fails another just seems to be advanced in its place. How much historic revisionism will egals continue to produce. I as a comp, find it very difficult to take seriously. Just to prove my point, how much of the Kroegers original work is now considered as true?…not much!

    Anyway Kristen we are butting heads here. I am still interested to know why you think ‘one woman man’ is generic (and thus includes female overseers) and yet why Paul needs to single out ‘gyne’ in verse 11 since in your own admission it is a restatement of verses 8-10. You seem to talk around in contradictions. I’ll leave it here for you to answer that one query of mine. If Paul is truly being generic (in verse 1-7) why do you state that Paul has instructions for men and then women (in verse 8-13)? That’s a contradiction as i see it! Especially since you lean heavily on the ‘likewise’ hypothesis. If verse 8 refers to ‘male’ deacons (as you say) and Paul says ‘likewise’ there, does that therefore not exclude women from verses 1-7 by your own argument.

  85. I am still thinking through Cheryl’s ideas stated above. I think she would find this illustration OK for what she is saying. So time for the bathroom illustration again! (Just slightly modified)
    I have some guests over to my house and I say
    (3:1-7) ” If anyone would like to use the games room he must a good sport, not violent when losing…..etc.”
    (3:8-10) ” If anyone would like to use the bathroom, be as quick and efficient as you can in consideration for anyone who may be waiting.”
    (3:11) ” Women, don’t take too long doing your hair and putting on your makeup.”
    (3:12) “Anyone who uses the bathroom please leave it tidy.”
    (apologies to the women- I am just trying to make the illustration work:) Any help in “tidying up” the illustration would be welcome)
    You could think that
    1. only v 11 applies to women because women are not allowed to play games, but they may use the bathroom.
    But it is also possible that
    2. both men and women can play games and use the bathroom, but women need a particular mention about a matter that was a particular concern.
    I used to read the passage as 1. but now I can see that 2. could also be a valid way of reading it. It depends on what we see the rest of the bible as teaching.
    Any thoughts?

  86. Mark, great to see you back. It is as if nothing has changed. No really, nothing has changed!

    You said, “We have no evidence that the ‘deacons’ were responsible for the sheparding of the Church or the teaching of the scriptures”

    You also said, “As i understand the NT, the office of ‘deacon’ were never responsible for the overseeing/shepharding of the church (as were the elders). The Book of Acts confirms this. Thus the elders are the responsible ones for the public teaching of the scriptures from which women are restricted.”

    Have you considered Stephen. He was a deacon who was obviously a bit slack with the washing up, because he died preaching. I am not sure why he put the tea towel down…just shows what can happen when you don’t understand the ‘office’ you are given. Some one gets hurt! 😉

  87. Craig,

    Illustrations fall down. Let me explain. Your illustration is one way to make a scenario. But consider this…

    I want all people will blonde hair to stand over to the left

    Likewise i want all people with dark hair standing over to the right.

    Likewise women you stand here at the front.

    Now the people with dark hair you should be …

    It is quite easily to manipulate one’s own illustration to prove a point. The question is how does ‘hosautos’ (likewise) function. As i said earlier, to stress it too far is not right unless you are trying to manipulate it to your agenda. Consider my example above. Clearly the likewise does not include every single person. It is simply a connective word, as seen in Paul’s epistle.

    Take another example, this time from Paul himself.

    Look at 1 Tim 2:9. The same word, hosautos is used there as in 1 Tim 3:8 and 11. But consider the context. 1 Tim 2:8 deals specifically with the men. Verse 9 then switches to deal specifically with the women. The two are joined by ‘likewise’. Now clearly Paul is not intending a generic understanding between the verse 8 and 9 since he specifically targets one verse to men and another to women. The ‘likewise’ simply acts as a connective. The context reveals this. The same is true in chapter 3.

    That’s all i want to say on this really. It’s a force of the meaning to push it any further. Just consider for a moment the way you would use the same word in a sentence.

  88. Hi Dave,

    Yes i have considered Stephen, but again like Pheobe it is irrelevant to the argument. Maybe i should have been a little clearly with the quotes you gave of me.

    As i understand 1 TIm 2:8-15, the teaching restricted is that linked with authority in the public congregational setting. That is, the preaching from the pulpit so to speak. This is the responsibility of the elders. ( I would have thought you knew comp theology well dave??)

    Now was Stephen involved in that specific action. NO! He was not the spiritual overseer of the sheep of the Church. He was ‘evangelising’ for simplicity sake, to unconverted Jews. Now, i have no issue with women evangelising. It is a great ministry for women to do aswell as men. But Stephen aswell as Pheobe (if she was a deacon) were neither doing what Paul prohibits. Deacons may teach in the sense of evangelising or even singing spirtual songs to each other (as should everybody else), but deacons again scripturally were never responsible nor did the authoritative teaching of God’s word in the Churches.

    But what you have done is try to confuse the issue. Again, to lump all ‘preaching’ or teaching together as one thing.

    Let me be more clear, the teaching restricted in Paul’s epistle is the authoritative teaching of God’s word to the Church in which he (the elder/pastor) has the spiritual oversight. Deacons did not have this responsibility as seen most clearly in 1 Tim 3 where elders are to have a qualification of being able to teach. Deacons do not need this qualification. Likewise Paul specifically notes in 1 Tim 5:17, that ELDERS who labor in preaching and teaching are worthy of double honour.

    So as i see it, my point still stands. No where in the NT do we see deacons given nor practicing that responsibility. Therefore Stephen, Pheobe, Priscilla are all irrelevant proof cases for the egalitarian. None of these people challenge the traditonal position. In fact, i agree with you all that these people had good ministries. What this shows is actually more evidence for the comp position since all three show that they were NOT doing what Paul prohibits them from doing.

  89. Craig,

    Final thought. You said

    “2. both men and women can play games and use the bathroom, but women need a particular mention about a matter that was a particular concern.”

    What was the particular concern in verse 11 that Paul states? Especially considering that ‘dignified’ the first qualification is EXACTLY the same word used as in verse 8. Therefore if verse 8 includes women why repeat himself?

  90. Sorry Mark, but you lost me with your illustration. You may need to explain it a bit more for it to make sense to me.
    You said

    “I want all people will blonde hair to stand over to the left
    Likewise i want all people with dark hair standing over to the right.
    ……………
    Now the people with dark hair you should be …”
    Are you saying these statements would be understood to only be referring to men?????

    Also, could you please explain what you mean by “to stress it too far” regarding the word “likewise”.

    You asked

    “What was the particular concern in verse 11 that Paul states? Especially considering that ‘dignified’ the first qualification is EXACTLY the same word used as in verse 8. Therefore if verse 8 includes women why repeat himself?”

    I’ll quote from Cheryl again.
    “Paul lists an additional qualification that specifically deals with an issue that plagues women when he says “likewise” and that added qualification is the issue of gossip. In Titus 2:3 Paul again links women (and specifically older women) with the bad habit of gossip.”

  91. Mark said:
    “Waht intrigues me the most is that most mainstream egals argue that ’one woman man’ is becasue men had more than one wife at that time (in fact iv’e seen Cheryl write that somewhere also), yet now you want to apply that phrase to women. Which way do you want it? When one argument fails another just seems to be advanced in its place. How much historic revisionism will egals continue to produce.”
    I personally have never said that “one woman man” is specifically in reference to polygamy. If Cheryl says so, fine. But must all egals agree with one another? Not all comps do! In fact, there is a large group of comps who would restrict a woman’s teaching not just to “authority in the public congregational setting” but to any woman teaching any man anything related to spiritual matters or theology. This is why the Southern Baptist Seminary fired its woman professors.
    As far as “historical revisionism,” that is simply unfair. History is just like any other discipline– as more research is done and new manuscripts are found, earlier ideas about what was actually meant by a particular text, may be replaced with newer understandings. That’s not “revisionist,” that’s just letting our knowledge of history develop.
    The newest historical data says that “one-woman man” was an idiomatic expression that meant “faithful spouse.” Since the masculine gender in the ancient Greek language was inclusive, “one-woman man” (unlike “one-man woman) can include both sexes. They did not have the gender-neutral word “spouse.” “One-woman man” was the only way they could express the thought “faithful spouse” to include both men and women.

  92. Mark, you said, “As i understand 1 TIm 2:8-15, the teaching restricted is that linked with authority in the public congregational setting. That is, the preaching from the pulpit so to speak. This is the responsibility of the elders.”

    I think your understanding is wrong. I agree with Cheryl. Last time you were here you tried to prove Cheryl’s exegesis as wrong but failed. Also, why do you persist in your understanding that is not backed up from the text?

    You said, “deacons again scripturally were never responsible nor did the authoritative teaching of God’s word in the Churches”.

    So Stephen could do this outside the church, but not in the church? Look at what Stephen said. He taught ‘authoritatively’ God’s word in the synagogue. Can you provide for scriptural evidence for this being ok for deacons to do outside the church, but not inside?

    You said, “But what you have done is try to confuse the issue. Again, to lump all ‘preaching’ or teaching together as one thing.”

    I think you had tried to confuse things before I got here. Also, neither the word ‘preaching’ or ‘teaching’ is used to describe what Stephen was doing in Acts. So why are you trying to confuse things? If you think the two are different then give some evidence from scripture.

    Look at what you are doing Mark. It is ok for a woman to TEACH in private, it is ok for a woman to PREACH in public, it is not ok for a woman to PREACH or TEACH in the church. You think I am confusing?

    You said, “Let me be more clear, the teaching restricted in Paul’s epistle is the authoritative teaching of God’s word to the Church in which he (the elder/pastor) has the spiritual oversight. Deacons did not have this responsibility as seen most clearly in 1 Tim 3 where elders are to have a qualification of being able to teach. Deacons do not need this qualification. Likewise Paul specifically notes in 1 Tim 5:17, that ELDERS who labor in preaching and teaching are worthy of double honour.”

    But I thought you said it was ok for a woman to teach in private. So a woman can be an elder if they teach in private? Legalism always produces more questions than answers.

    You said, “So as i see it, my point still stands. No where in the NT do we see deacons given nor practicing that responsibility. Therefore Stephen, Pheobe, Priscilla are all irrelevant proof cases for the egalitarian”.

    If you say so Mark! All I was doing was showing that Deacons can preach. If you look at what Stephen said, I believe it is fair enough to say he taught God’s word to the Jews. This is a problem for your claim.

  93. Mark said:
    “I am still interested to know why you think ’one woman man’ is generic (and thus includes female overseers) and yet why Paul needs to single out ’gyne’ in verse 11 since in your own admission it is a restatement of verses 8-10. You seem to talk around in contradictions. I’ll leave it here for you to answer that one query of mine. If Paul is truly being generic (in verse 1-7) why do you state that Paul has instructions for men and then women (in verse 8-13)?”

    You have to think about the way the original reader would think, and how the Greek worked. Now, I’m not a Greek scholar, but I do understand what inclusive male-gendered language is, because we used to do the same thing in English, and I am old enough to remember when it was very common.
    So looking at the passage again:
    Chapter 3 opens with “Whoever [the Greek word there is gender-inclusive] aspires to be an overseer desires a noble task.” Then it goes into the qualifications for an overseer, including “husband of one wife” (which is gender inclusive also. Now, even though Paul uses gender-inclusive language, he does not specifically mention women in the context of overseers. There, we are in agreement. But what Paul does by using gender-inclusive language is to allow for the possibility that women could aspire to this position. However, it is quite possible, since Paul doesn’t mention women specifically, that there were no women overseers at that time. However, he was not assuming that women could never be overseers, or forbid them from aspiring to the position. If he had been, he would not have used the gender-inclusive “whoever” at the beginning of this section.
    Then Paul moves on to deacons. He uses the “likewise” to say that the qualifications for deacons are of the same general nature as the qualifications for overseers. Then he speaks of the qualifications for deacons as I described earlier. Now Paul does go ahead and specifically mention women. The thing about saying he is referring to deacon’s wives, and not female deacons, is that it raises the question of why he did not say anything about overseers’ wives in verses 1-7. Overseers were allowed to be married. If Paul is saying that in order for a man to be a deacon, his wife must also rise to a certain level of character, why no such qualifications for overseers’ wives?
    It makes more sense that Paul is referring to female deacons. This does, as you said, raise the question of why, if the passage about deacons as a whole is considered gender-inclusive, does Paul specifically raise the issue of qualifications for female deacons? The answer, of course, lies in the mindset of the ancient Greek reader.
    When the masculine gender in the English language was considered to be gender inclusive (it still is, in some ways, but is getting less and less so), a person reading about “men” could only guess from the context whether the writer was referring to a group of males only, or a group of males and females. The context was everything. If a writer starts out by talking about “men,” and then later in the same context, mentions “women,” the reader can from that context understand that both women and men are being included in the word “men.”
    It would work this way with “deacons.” The word “deacon” could be construed as referring only to male deacons, or it could be construed as referring to male and female deacons both. The reader can only tell from the context. In this case, Paul starts out by talking about “deacons” in a sense in which it is not clear at all whether he means males and females, or males only. So by adding the section about “women,” and using the word “likewise,” he makes it clear that he intends to differentiate between male and female deacons, and yet to include both under the general word “deacon.” The qualifications for women deacons are, as I said, roughly parallel to the first set of qualifications– but also (as Craig said) slightly different, because women and men in that culture faced different sorts of temptations that deacons were expected to rise above.
    The last section includes words about deacons’ relationships with their families. It is interesting to note that the passage says nothing about deacons– presuming they were male– properly governing their wives– no, only a deacon’s “children” and “household” are mentioned as being the subjects of such government.
    Of course we know that both men and women should be faithful in marriage! But it would seem strange, since Paul took the trouble to set forth roughly parallel commands for men and women, if the commands about being a good spouse, parent and household manager only applied to men in this section. Later in 1 Timothy Chapter 5, verse 14, Paul specifically mentions that young married women (namely widows who have remarried), are to “rule their households (the word is “oikodespotes” — the noun form of this word was used by Jesus to refer to the “master of the house.”) Clearly household government was not restricted only to men. And surely Paul expected women to keep their children under control!
    This is why it makes sense for “one-woman man,” among the other phrases referring to deacons’ family relationships, to be gender inclusive.

  94. “Don’t confuse soteriology with ministry. This is the mistake that egals make with Gal 3:28 and as it”
    Mark,
    I’m going to ask you to take a better look at the context of Gal. 3:28. The Galatians were already Christians. Paul wasn’t answering “what is salvation” or “who can be saved?” He was addressing “How do we live together as children of God?” The issue at hand is ecclesiology: who constitutes the people of God and on what grounds are they constituted?” This is not a matter of soteriology. They have “clothed themselves with Christ,” Abraham’s true “seed” (Gal. 3:15-18), Paul points out the result: since all are now ‘children of God through faith’ and all who have been baptized are thus clothed with Christ, there is therefore ‘neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
    You are correct and I agree that the levitical priesthood was fulfilled in Christ and we are now all part of that new priesthood of believers. Peter 4:10–11 “ As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. Whoever speaks, is to do so as one who is speaking the utterances of God; whoever serves is to do so as one who is serving by the strength which God supplies; so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.”
    “As i understand 1 TIm 2:8-15, the teaching restricted is that linked with authority in the public congregational setting. That is, the preaching from the pulpit so to speak. This is the responsibility of the elders.”
    We’ve been over this before. There were no “pulpit so to speak” of’s to speak of and no “formal” cathedral style buildings to meet inside for “formal” services. No limitation of placement (outdoors or indoors) is put forth for teaching, preaching, evangelizing or worshiping. The burden of proof is on you to show that any of these are limited to only certain locations.

  95. Craig,

    Whats the evidence that women struggle more with that or at least did in Paul’s time?

    Why can it not just be what it says…simply a qualification that applies to women or wives?

    This is the historical revisionism that i was talking about.

    Concerning my illustration…yes they only apply to men…we know this by the specific instruction given to the women. Not also to miss the clear masculine connotations in Paul’s writing that my illustration has left off. The point is, a modern illustration is subjective to ones interpretation and intent in the illustration. Your’s for example was done to stress the possibility of Cheryl’s point. As i stated (and proved about hosautos) the likewise is being stretched in that scenario beyond what Paul himself shows us a few verses earlier.

    Kristen

    “Since the masculine gender in the ancient Greek language was inclusive”

    Not always. You need to show why it is inclusive within this context? The natural meaning is refering to men…the context must insist us to believe that it was inclusive. You haven’t done this. Plus again, the shift to gyne in verse 11 disproves the point you try to make.

    Dave,

    C’mon mate, let’s be realisitic. The scriptures are clear that Priscilla taught in private with her husband. The scriptures are clear that Stephen evangelised. The scriptures are likewise clear on Paul’s prohibition…so something must give! What is you believe comps teach? Sounds like you don’t understand and insist that we keep women quiet for all time at every time. Don’t distort what your ‘enemy’ actually teach. At least be fair to what they actually say! I do think it is ok for women to co lead for example a bible study with their husband in private. I do think it is ok for a woman to be involved in evangelism. I do not think it is ok for a woman to lead the church and have the spiritual oversight of it. Nor do i think it is ok for a woman to expound the scriptures to a mixed congregation of believers.

    The context of 1 Tim illustrates why this is related to public congregational setting. The scriptures also teach the responsibilty of the elders, that they are to be able to teach and that they did in fact teach. No where in scripture is it stated or shown that people outside of that sphere had the responsibility that elders had. Deacons did not, women did not. It was only for specific men to fulfill that role. This is plain scriptural fact, not legalism. As i said your proof cases actually prove my case and do nothing to challenge the comp interpretation of 1 Tim.

    I don’t need to try and prove Cheryl’s exegesis wrong…it is wrong. No serious evangelical scholar considers it likely. It is based on assumptions and historical revisionism foremost, ignores the evidence of authentein, ignores the syntax parallels, ignores the positive use of ‘teach’ used always in the NT (except once in Titus where the immediate context shows it is false teaching), ignores that the singular can be generic (seen in Titus 1 where Paul switches from plural to singular similar to verse 11), ignores that Paul twice uses a different verb for ‘false teaching’ in the same epistle yet not here, assumes such a person existed, assumes this person was married, assumes this passage refers to them…the list goes on.

    Let me ask just one question from you Dave. Have you read the book by Screiner and Kostenberger on 1 Tim 2:12, ‘Women in the Church’? At least good solid bible scholars like Gordon Fee, FF Bruce and even our own aussie Kevin GIles realise the text saids what it saids- they just dismiss it’s implications.

    Final point Dave, i agree with you about Stephen. He did evangelise the Jews…i said that. But you have failed to show how that effects my view of 1 Tim 2, or how it effects the NT teaching on eldership.

  96. Kristen,

    Thank you for answering my question- it is helpful. But your whole answer is like is said earlier…historical revisionism. You say we need to think the ways the greeks did and i agree. Yet why is it that the early church did not understand all this the way you claim?

    As for your ‘inclusive’ claims on certain words you must know that they are actually all masculine which means they are well…masculine. ‘Anyone’ is masculine, ‘bishop’ is masculine… In fact most of the whole structure is masculine with the exception of a few words like ‘ecclesia’ which is feminine. I agree some words can be gender inclusive but there needs to be proof to show this. You say ‘gyne’ is proof which is ironic really. I’m not sure any greek speaker would understand it the way you say, unless you can show me some evidence from the early writings?

    Anyway i appreciate your thoughts, but it confirmed what i thought. There is actually no exegetical evidence to show that this is gender inclusive and that the whole argument is a hypothesis. If you have links or sources to show this is the way a naural greek would understand the grammar and the shift to gyne i’d love to see it!

  97. Kay,

    We are never going to agree on Gal 3. The epistle is an extroadinary outline of the gospel and soteriology. Paul is addressing the galatian heresy so YES he was talking about how you are saved and what is salvation. For example Paul outlines justification by faith and not works. It is littered throughout the whole epistle.

    Paul is arguing against the Judaizers who had come to galatia making the gentiles be circumcised. THus Paul responds that there is no need for the old law in Christ. Regardless of who you are; male/female, slave/ free, jew/ gentile etc…we are all one in Christ. Salvation is for all who come to Him in faith.

    To argue for ecclesiology as the primary function just doesn’t fit the context, nor the content of the letter, nor the overall purpose of the letter.

  98. Mark, “masculine” words in Greek do not mean the word is masculine. That’s a common mistake Enlish speakers make. The gender of a noun is part of the language; it doesn’t mean a “masculine” word therefore means a male thing.
    This is plain to see if we look at modern French. The word for “table” is “la table.” This doesn’t mean the French think tables are feminine things. “La porte” means “door.” The French don’t think doors are feminine creatures. Oddly enough, in French a lot of words that refer to masculine articles of clothing are feminine, and a a lot of words that refer to femnine articles of clothing are masculine. This means nothing. Languages with gendered nouns don’t directly translate to masculine nouns being about male things, and feminine nouns being about female things.

    “Anybody” may be a masculine-gendered word in the Greek, but the meaning of the word is gender-neutral.

    As for Galatians 3:28, if you’ll read further on into Chapter 4, it becomes quite clear that Paul is talking about far more than salvation. He’s talking about the nature of the covenant community of believers in Christ, that they all have the same status as “adopted sons” — which was a term that referred to the full status of someone who had been adopted, as a freeborn male Roman citizen, with all the rights and privileges pertaining thereto. Paul says we are all adopted as sons– we all have the same “freeborn male citizen” status. The passage was not intended as a way to hand a sop to Gentiles, slaves or women and say, “There, you have salvation. Now be satisfied with that and let us freeborn male Jews have everything else.”
    There are no poor, low-status cousins in the Kingdom. We are ALL SONS.
    But you’re probably right to end the conversation– it’s getting nowhere. I explained my position on deacons, and you still see what I’m saying. I don’t see how we’re going to come to any agreement when we’re starting from such different foundations.

  99. Oops– that was meant to say, “I explained my position, and you still don’t see what I’m saying.”
    Which is probably what you’re also feeling about me. (grin)
    Be well.

  100. Mark,
    “At least be fair to what they actually say! I do think it is ok for women to co lead for example a bible study with their husband in private. I do think it is ok for a woman to be involved in evangelism. I do not think it is ok for a woman to lead the church and have the spiritual oversight of it. Nor do i think it is ok for a woman to expound the scriptures to a mixed congregation of believers. The context of 1 Tim illustrates why this is related to public congregational setting.”

    But you are missing Dave’s point. Please show us in scripture where “in private” is located? And the number of people allowed in attendance before it is considered “a mixed congregation”? 10? 15? 30?
    Brother, you know there are no rules like this in the Bible. Any rules and guidelines like that are made up by people who draw the lines where they wish. I’d really like to know the last time you were in a mixed congregation of ONLY believers? Tell me, how did you know with absolute certainty that everyone in that congregation was a believer? You read minds? Read hearts? You know Elders who do? C’mon now, Mark?

  101. Mark,
    “To argue for ecclesiology as the primary function just doesn’t fit the context, nor the content of the letter, nor the overall purpose of the letter.”
    I didn’t say it was the primary function of the letter – the letter has more than one function.
    Please re-read Gal. 2 – Paul’s words regarding his confrontation with Peter. Did it have anything to do with teaching that the Gentiles weren’t saved? Or that they needed to be circumcised? No, Peter’s problem was that “he was eating with the Gentiles” before certain men returned to Antioch; then, “fearing the circumcision party” Peter quit eating with the Gentile believers. It had nothing to do with salvation. Peter realized that God brought salvation to the Gentiles (Acts 15). Eating with Gentiles was a sign of acceptance into the body of Christ.
    One cannot simply deny these points being ecclesiology simply because some labeled this book as “soteriology. Period.”

  102. Kristin,
    Basically, it does always seem to boil down to the matter of presuppositions reading the text. Mark’s approach views “masculine” words in Greek mean that the word is masculine because according to him, quote: “It was only for specific men to fulfill that role. This is plain scriptural fact, not legalism.” Clearly, it’s part and parcel of the foundation of his faith – along with ‘formal’ church being conducted inside a ‘church’ building with a pulpit because that is the only setting in which ‘authoritative’ teaching or preaching can take place. In fact, that appears to be how he can tell the difference between ‘authoritative’ teaching and any other ‘ministry.’

  103. @ Dave Hi! 100 yay! 😀

    @ Mark 91 In New Testament parlance a servant (diakonos) IS a minister, and vice versa! So I agree with you on that. I only diasagree with your conclusions about Phoebe, and I am genuinely sad that you have singled her out from the rest of the diakonoi named by Paul simply because of her gender. 🙁

    NT authors used different words (other than diakonos) for “real” servants, such as Rhoda (Acts 12:13) and the woman in the courtyard (Mark 14:66). The numerous cognates of diakonos are used OVERWHELMINGLY in the context of Christian service-ministry throughout the NT. The only time cognates of diakonos are used for “real” servants are for the wedding attendents in John 2:5,9. And as I’ve said previously you can’t be a “real” servant and a prostatis (Rom 16:2). The two are at opposite ends of the social spectrum.

    In the plainest reading of Romans 16:1-2 in the Greek we can see that Phoebe was a minister of the congregation of Cenchrea and a leader (or possibly patron) of many, including Paul. Paul is emphasising Phoebe’s credentials. Paul commends Phoebe to the Roman church. He asks them to receive her in a manner worthy of the saints, and to assist her in whatever she may need. Phoebe sounds like a serious minister involved in significant ministry.

    Furthermore, there is little doubt that Phoebe did not travel to Rome alone. She would have had travelling companions for safety, etc. But only Phoebe is mentioned by Paul. To argue that Phoebe was not a leader in Christian service-ministry is to view Romans 16:1-2 with bias.

    BTW, here are some feminine Greek words:
    “exousia”: authority, power;
    “basileia” reign, kingdom;
    “hegemonia”: reign, rule;
    “oikonomia”: administration, management, etc.

    As for “a one woman man” not excluding women: people from both sides of the women in ministry debate (people with much more knowledge, and who have done much more research than myself) take this position. I have written about this also at http://newlife.id.au/equality-and-gender-issues/pauls-qualifications-for-church-leaders/

  104. Marg,

    You may have misunderstood me. I am not saying Pheobe was a ‘servant’ in the sense of master/servant, simply that ‘diakonos’ means ‘servant’ literally. Therefore is does not necessarily mean Pheobe was a ‘deacon’ in the official sense. She could have been simply a ‘servant’ in the same sense Paul uses it of himself, Timothy and others, as in the ‘service of God’. That is different to a deacon’s position aswell as the ‘real’ servant. Take for example Luke 10:40

    Martha is there ‘serving’ in the kitchen. This is the same root word. But it does not mean Martha is a deacon or a leader of a church. Nor does it mean she was a ‘real’ servant with a master. She is simply a ‘servant’! This is equally possible for Pheobe. She was simply a servant of the Church, she served the Church.

    As for your claim she was a leader, well i’m sure your aware that that word is again heavily disputed. Do you think Paul really intended to say she was a leader (patron) over him? Did she really have authority over Paul, the apostolic founder and missionary of the gentile Churches. Or is more likely that she has ‘helped’ him and therefore the Romans should ‘help’ her? Note also Paul immediately talks about Priscilla and Aquilla who were ‘fellow- workers’. It seems much more natural to me to say Pheobe was a servant of the church who had helped Paul in his ministry, similar to Priscilla and Aquilla in the following verse. But i realise we cannot be certain about that. We can not know simply exegetically.

    I have been quite up front that i don’t know what is the best way to interpret this verse: it could go either way without much difference. So i have to protest that my bias is interferring here. I would have thought the opposite may be true considering you are the one so certain she was a deacon/leader without acknowledging that there are other exegetical possibilities which appear to be more likely given the rest of NT teaching.

    Thanks Marg for the chat!

  105. @ Mark “As I understand 1 Tim 2:8-15, the teaching restricted is that linked with authority in the public congregational setting. That is, the preaching from the pulpit so to speak. This is the responsibility of the elders.”

    Firstly, there is nothing in 1 Timothy that hints that 1 Tim 2:8-15 is speaking about public teaching. And pulpits have nothing whatsoever to do with New Testament Christianity or early church-life!!!

    1 Timothy 3:14-15 about “how people ought to conduct themselves in God’s household” (which is sometimes used to argue your case) comes immediately after Paul’s instructions about how church leaders/elders and ministers/deacons should behave in God’s household – the Church. Paul could hardly have been saying that the moral behaviour he requires of church leaders and ministers is only applicable during church services or meetings. Church leaders, and (of course) all true believers and followers of Christ, are part of God’s household, the church, 24/7, even when it is not assembled for a meeting. I very much doubt that Paul’s prohibition to a woman not to teach a man in the Ephesian congregation was limited to a church meeting setting; especially as the false teaching was being spread “door to door”. (See 1 Tim 5:13 and15).

    Secondly, I agree that the NT states that a qualification of elders is that they must have teaching ability. This however does not mean that diakonoi did not teach or preach. The Didache 15:1 (as I mentioned previously) says that both episkopoi and didaskoi in the early church prophesied and taught. (Most modern church elders that I know seem to function as board members rather than true gospel ministers.)

    Stephen (who is never actually called a deacon-diakonos in NT scripture) has had his very public speech immortalised as scripture – scripture having, arguably, one of the highest levels of spiritual authority. There is no reason at all to assume that some diakonoi did not teach or preach.

    Lastly the Greek indefinite pronoun -tis – which can be translated as “somebody” or “anyone” or “a certain one”, is one of those rare Greek words that is identical in form in both masculine and feminine contexts. It is the exact same word used in 2 Corinthians 5:17, “If anyone is in Christ . . .”

    “. . . If anyone (masc or fem) aspires (no gender specified) to overseership (feminine noun), he/she/it desires (no gender specified) a noble/fine task (neuter adjective and noun).” A very literal translation of 1 Timothy 3:1b showing grammatical gender.

    Mark, with genuine respect, I sincerely do not believe that you have a case. The qualifications for elders and overseers do not exclude women. We know that women were church leaders: Nympha, Chloe, Priscilla, etc; women loved and valued by Paul. And Phoebe, as well as being a minister, was more than likely a church leader also. I cannot see how anyone can think otherwise from reading Romans 16:1-2 in the Greek, unless they allow other views to cloud their comprehension of these 2 verses.

  106. @ Mark 119
    I do not think that the apostle Paul, or anyone, should be above learning or being helped by another person. So I don’t have a problem with Paul’s comment that Phoebe had been a patroness to him or had ministered in a way that can be construed as leadership.

    King Josiah [and his delegation which included the High Priest (Hilkiah), the father of the future governor (Ahikam), the secretary of state (Shaphan) and the king’s officer (Asaiah)], had no problem with seeking Huldah for spiritually authoritative and important advice. Barak, (an army leader) had no problem with Deborah’s assistance and leadership, and in fact relied upon it (Judges 4:8). King David did not think he was above heeding good advice given by women; in Abigail’s case he was even very grateful for it. (e.g. 1 Sam 25:23-35.)

    Martha’s “serving” is actually one of the very few examples when a cognate of diakonew is not used in the context of Christian ministry. Perhaps the word is intentional to highlight Mary’s better choice of activity. As I’ve said, the cognates of diakonos (and diakonew) are overwhelmingly used in the context of service-ministry to God and in Christian service-ministry.

    Prisiclla and Aquila were Paul’s co-workers but they also led their own house church in Ephesus (acts 18:19) and later Rome (1 Cor 16:19).

    As I’ve said previously, I believe that the “order of deacon” evolved after the New Testament was written. However extra-Biblical evidence after 100AD clearly shows that women were deacons in an official capacity. There are catacomb drawings of female deacons ministering the sacraments, and there are intructions in extra-biblical writings to women deacons. Chrysostom, in writing about women deacons, said, “. . . for that order is necessary and useful and honourable in the Church”. (Chrysostom, Homilies on 1 Timothy, Homily XI)
    Pliny wrote that he tortured two women because of their Christian faith. He described these women as “two female slaves who were styled deaconesses [latin- ministrae]” Pliny, Letters 2:404.

    I don’t think that anyone is arguing that women can’t be deacons. I just don’t think that Phoebe was an official deacon, because there were no offical deacons yet. However Phoebe’s ministry may have pioneered the way for later female deacons.

    That’s it from me today . . .

  107. “I do not think that the apostle Paul, or anyone, should be above learning or being helped by another person.”
    Marg@121,

    You bring out a very important point. Not even the apostle Peter was above learning a lesson from Paul. Also, Apollos was not a novice and had a thorough knowledge of scripture – “Now a certain Jew named Apollos, born at Alexandria, an eloquent man and mighty in the Scriptures, came to Ephesus. This man had been instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in spirit, he spoke and taught accurately the things of the Lord, though he knew only the baptism of John. So he began to speak boldly in the synagogue. When Aquila and Priscilla heard him, they took him aside and explained to him the way of God more accurately.”

  108. Mark, “C’mon mate, let’s be realisitic” is not a valid argument…especially when I am realistic! Kay responded on my behalf with regards to you first point. Thanks Kay, Mark did miss the point.

    I should add that I do not see you as the ‘enemy’ Mark. You said, “I do think it is ok for women to co lead for example a bible study with their husband in private”.

    Where in scripture do you get this from? I have been in Bible Studies with as many as 15-20 regular people attending – sounds like a 1st century church.. Is that still ok? Also, is that really in private? How are you Biblically defining ‘private’? Are we just expected to accept this view of yours?

    You said, “The context of 1 Tim illustrates why this is related to public congregational setting. The scriptures also teach the responsibilty of the elders, that they are to be able to teach and that they did in fact teach. No where in scripture is it stated or shown that people outside of that sphere had the responsibility that elders had. Deacons did not, women did not. It was only for specific men to fulfill that role. This is plain scriptural fact, not legalism. As i said your proof cases actually prove my case and do nothing to challenge the comp interpretation of 1 Tim”.

    1 Tim makes no mention of only Elders teaching and having authority over anyone, men or women. There is no reason in the text to believe that the situation is more than something that was happening at the Church. If so, please show me. The Bible does not teach the responsibilities of Elders (if you are referring to 1 Tim 3), but rather what a person who aspires to being an Elder should already be able to do, or rather already be doing. An Elder should be someone who is already ‘apt to teach’ before they are an Elder. To say more is to read into the passage. Your plain scriptural fact is not what you claim…plain, scriptural or factual! My proof case does what I claim. Stephen was not an Elder and he preached. He exegeted the Word of God. Read Acts for yourself. He was not handing out “Two Ways To Live” leaflets. If preaching is only to Christians then I do not know if I have ever preached. Not sure how they do it in your church, do you test people before you preach and only the ones who can respond with correct answers to the shorter catechism stay and listen? Look at what you are suggesting Mark, it does not make logical sense.

    You said, “I don’t need to try and prove Cheryl’s exegesis wrong…it is wrong. No serious evangelical scholar considers it likely. It is based on assumptions and historical revisionism foremost, ignores the evidence of authentein, ignores the syntax parallels, ignores the positive use of ‘teach’ used always in the NT (except once in Titus where the immediate context shows it is false teaching), ignores that the singular can be generic (seen in Titus 1 where Paul switches from plural to singular similar to verse 11), ignores that Paul twice uses a different verb for ‘false teaching’ in the same epistle yet not here, assumes such a person existed, assumes this person was married, assumes this passage refers to them…the list goes on”.

    Why, if Cheryl’s exegesis is wrong, is it so hard for you to prove it. No serious evangelical scholar says “I do not need to prove it wrong because it is wrong”.Remember last time you were here? You had nothing, though you claimed to have everything. I am an evangelical scholar, and I believe I am serious most of the time and I consider it likely. Problem for you is that I have not heard an exegetical scholar, comical or otherwise who has proved it incorrect. I, and I assume Cheryl, would love more to try as we are seeking the truth.

    It appears as though you are ignoring some of the evidence of authentein, but Cheryl’s exegesis does not rest heavily on the meaning of this word anyway. What ‘syntax parallels are you referring to? Why do you discount the possible use of a negative use of teach when you can also cite an example of it? Correct, context is key, and Cheryl has shown how the context supports a negative use of ‘teach’. What verse in Titus 1 were you referring to?, you recognise that the context of the epistle has to do with false teaching (well done there!), Paul says such a person existed (it is not assumed), no one has assumed the person was married (the exegesis does not rest on this), yes, we are trying to understand the passage that is talking about two (or more) people…your list of ‘up the garden path leading’ claims goes on. Mark either deal with it properly or not at all. That reminds me, are you ready yet to offer your own understanding of this passage or does that continue to allude you!

    In answer to your question, I have not read all of that book.
    Finally, you said, “Final point Dave, i agree with you about Stephen. He did evangelise the Jews…i said that. But you have failed to show how that effects my view of 1 Tim 2, or how it effects the NT teaching on eldership”.

    Yes I have, it is just that you refuse to accept it and dismiss it without showing why.

  109. “Read Acts for yourself. He was not handing out “Two Ways To Live” leaflets. If preaching is only to Christians then I do not know if I have ever preached. Not sure how they do it in your church, do you test people before you preach and only the ones who can respond with correct answers to the shorter catechism stay and listen?”
    Dave, May I second that? 🙂

  110. Mark,
    I apologize if it seemed I was harsh toward you @115-117. I was rather frustrated that our discussions had once again circled back ’round to “private church”vs.”public church” and “in front of” or “behind a pulpit”…. 🙁

  111. Dave @123 said:

    “The Bible does not teach the responsibilities of Elders . . . (1 Tim 3), but rather what a person who aspires to being an Elder should already be able to do, or rather already be doing. An Elder should be someone who is already ‘apt to teach’ before they are an Elder.”

    This is a very nice point, Dave!

  112. Dave,

    We are always going to but heads. I recommend you read the scholarly work of comps such as that book i recommended before you continue to argue for Cheryl’s exegesis.
    s
    Kostenberger has conclusively shown that in that syntactical construction both teach and exercise authority must either be positive or negetive. Therefore we need to consider if it can be negetive. The immediate context does not allow for ‘teach falsely’ unless you stretch right back to 1:3. Also Paul twice in this same epistle uses a different verb for ‘teach falsely’ that he does not use here.
    All other uses of ‘teach’ in the NT bar one exception like i said where the immediate context (as in the verses surrounding the word) are positive. Therefore teach must be positive in 1 Tim 2.

    Also Baldwin has done extensive research on authentein and concludes that there are 5 possible meanings. The common donominator is that they all represent authority of some sort.

    Now considering ‘teach’ must be positive to be consistent with the rest of the NT, authentein must also be. This is the only possible syntactical possibility.

    Look at Titus 1:6 i think it is…i don’t have a Bible handy. Paul uses ‘bishops’ in the plural. Then in verse 10 or 11 (again check more closely cause i don’t have a bible here) Paul switches to the singular… ‘an overseer…’. Clearly though, Paul has all overseers in view in the qualifications not just one person. Therefore the singular acts as a generic singular as with 1 Tim 2:11ff.

    Final point i want to address and then i’m out…you said

    “There is no reason in the text to believe that the situation is more than something that was happening at the Church. ”

    Are you arguing for an ad hoc situation here similar to Fee? If so, that is a dangerous hermeneutic to apply and is exactly what the Liberals tend to do. For example Galatians was written to a specific context and for a specific reason. Do we therefore say that Paul’s outline of the gospel is only relevant for that Church? Is 1 Corinthians therefore no longer applicable? Where do we draw the line? Almost the whole Bible was written for a particular audience to address a particular context? Your above quote begins the slippery slope to a complete rejection of Biblical authority and that is worrying. This is the whole problem of egalitarianismm, it adopts a liberal hermeneutic…you need to at least address this and be honest about it and try to rectify it.

  113. Mark,
    When is the last time you “greeted the brethren with a holy kiss?”
    If not, then you must be headed down that “slippery slope” to a complete rejection of Biblical authority as well!

    1Thessalonians 5:26 — “Greet all the brethren with a holy kiss.”
    1 Peter 5:13-14 — “She who is in Babylon, chosen together with you, sends you greetings, and so does my son, Mark. Greet one another with a kiss of love. Peace be to you all who are in Christ.”
    The fact that the “holy kiss” is a command of two different apostles within the inspired New Testament Scriptures does not necessarily prescribe, however, that the expression or implementation of this command is forever frozen in a single form. In other words, what exactly is it that is really being commanded of disciples? Is it a literal placing of one’s lips upon the face or head of another disciple, or simply the visible, physical expression, in whatever form may be customary to one’s time and culture, of peace, affection, harmony and unity among brethren? The same question has been asked of the command by Jesus to wash the feet of others [John 13:14]. Must we literally wash the feet of our brothers and sisters in Christ, or was Jesus seeking to impress a deeper truth upon our hearts. The fact that many legalistic patternists seek to impose a literal fulfillment of certain commands and examples, but dismiss other commands and examples as “culturally irrelevant” to our modern times, smacks of “cherry picking” theology, and at best shows the inconsistency of that approach to biblical interpretation and application.

  114. Hi Mark,
    Just thinking aloud. A couple of questions come to mind that you may be able to help with Mark.
    1. Is there a reason you left out Rev 2:20 and the “teaching” rather than “false teaching” of Jezebel? Sorry if you mentioned this verse and I just missed it.
    2. In a situation like Jezebel, where a specific false teacher is known to both the writer and the recipient, is there a need to clarify that her “teaching” is “false teaching”? It seems that the answer is no. I can understand the need to use the word for “false teaching” where the recipient would not otherwise understand, but where the specific false teacher is well known, it may have not been necessary. Any thoughts?

  115. Mark @ 129 “Now considering ‘teach’ must be positive to be consistent with the rest of the NT, authentein must also be. This is the only possible syntactical possibility.”

    I am genuinely aghast that anyone can think that “authentein” is positive!!!

    As to “didaskein” being positive:
    There are at least 3 instances in the Pastoral letters alone where the cognates of didasko are used for evil and corrupt teaching: 1 Timothy 4:1; 2 Timothy 4:3; Titus 1:11; and I believe 1 Timothy 2:12.

    In fact false teaching was such a problem at Ephesus and Crete, that Paul often used adjectives such as “sound”, “fine”, “godly”, etc, to distinguish the good teaching he was encouraging in Timothy and Titus from the prevalent false teaching.

  116. Thanks Marg, Kay, Kristen and Dave for all your helpful comments in interacting with Mark. Thanks too Mark for challenging everyone. It all helps me to understand things better.

  117. Kay,

    I’m some what in agreement with you about interpretation. Thus a good proper solid exegesis is required.

    It is not simply good enough to say…’well that doesn’t apply ot us anymore’, nor is it exceptable to say that ‘everything literally applies’.

    The former is what Fee offers for 1 Tim 2 and seemingly what Dave suggested. This is a pure liberal hermeneutic. That is not rhetoric but fact.

    Thus something else must help us. Consider that ALL Paul’s teaching on these issues are grounded in creation. Therefore, there is something significant about it. A holy kiss on the other hand is never associated in the same way and linked to the OT in it’s command. Therefore again, we need to distinguish the two.

    To simply dismiss 1 Tim 2 ad hoc is a liberal hermeneutic and DOES open the way to BIblical rejection. We have seen this in the past, the most telling for egals was when CBE had to branch off from it’s sister organisation who went completely liberal.

    I’ll comment more later Craig and Marg

  118. Craig,

    Good question re Revelation. The best way to look at your question is to quote Kostenberger as its his work not mine. I will do that for you tomorrow, but for the mean time here is how i understadn what he saids.

    In 1 Tim 2 we have ‘to teach’ in what is described as an ‘absolute’ sense. That is, there is no mention within the verses of the ‘content’ of the teaching, thus we cannot know whether it is positive or negetive in that sense.

    Looking at Rev 2:20 we know the ‘content’ of the teaching. Therefore, Kostenbergers research looks into all the NT uses of ‘to teach’ in the absolute sense, as in all the cases where ‘to teach’ is used but no mention of the content of the teaching. His research shows that they are all positive except Titus 1 as i said.

    But more tomoz

  119. Hi Mark @135,
    You said, “Looking at Rev 2:20 we know the ‘content’ of the teaching.”
    This is similar to what i was suggesting. It makes sense that if the context shows that “false teaching” is involved (not just the “content” of it), and the writer and recipient know it is false teaching, then the normal word for “teaching” could be used and it would be understood as “false teaching”. This is the case with both Rev 2:20 and 1 Tim 2:12. The context of false teaching in the letter, the mention of deception in v14, and the fact that there is a question over her salvation, all point to the issue of false teaching in 1 Tim 2. So it is not “teaching” all by itself with no context to tell us what it is. It is not “absolute” in your definition of “absolute”. So my suggestion could still be quite valid.

  120. Mark, you said, “We are always going to but heads. I recommend you read the scholarly work of comps such as that book i recommended before you continue to argue for Cheryl’s exegesis”.

    Are be butting heads? Thats right, I forgot, you are the enemy. Thanks for the recommendation, but if you cannot express to me simply on a blog where I am wrong, then I do not think the issue is whether or not I should read a book you recommend. I would recommend you read Alice in Wonderland before you go discounting Cheryl’s exegesis!

    Now, in regards to the use of the word “teach” and “authentein”, how can it be positive in this context? Paul is saying he does not permit it. Nowhere has Paul suggested that it is ok for anyone to authentein anyone else. He has not had a problem with anyone else teaching anyone else, unless they are false teachers (if I am wrong please show me an example). You have admitted that ‘teach’ can be positive or negative. Show me from the text that Paul thinks what this singular woman (this is not assumed – show me in the grammar where there is more than one woman) is doing is positive. Pretty hard since he is asking her to stop. I am happy that both the authentein and teach are negative…so thanks Mr Kostenberger!

    Mark, you said, “Also Baldwin has done extensive research on authentein and concludes that there are 5 possible meanings. The common donominator is that they all represent authority of some sort. Now considering ‘teach’ must be positive to be consistent with the rest of the NT, authentein must also be. This is the only possible syntactical possibility.”

    This only works on your unproven theory that teach is positive in this context.

    Mark, I checked out Titus. Probably would be helpful if you told me exactly where you were in the text. Titus 1:7 speaks of a singular overseer, I assume a generic singular. In 6:10-11 it talks in the plural, but not about overseers, rather those who are unruly, eveil-doers etc (pretty sure they are NOT overseers). So Paul has not switched from using a generis singular to a plural for the same person, if that is what you are suggesting. Please note though that Cheryl’s exegesis accepts that there can be a singular generic, but that the context shows this to not be the case in 1 Tim 2.

    Mark you quoted me, “There is no reason in the text to believe that the situation is more than something that was happening at the Church. ”

    You then got all stressed out, “Are you arguing for an ad hoc situation here similar to Fee? If so, that is a dangerous hermeneutic to apply and is exactly what the Liberals tend to do. For example Galatians was written to a specific context and for a specific reason. Do we therefore say that Paul’s outline of the gospel is only relevant for that Church?”

    Mark, please do not take me where I have not gone. Do you believe that in every church there is an overseer who needs to drink a little wine each day for his stomaches sake? Do you believe that in every church today there are people who get drunk at communion? I assume the answer is no. In the same way I am simply stating that we have no reason FROM THE TEXT to believe that Paul is not dealing with a situation here that was specific to this church – that there was a woman who was deceived and was falsely teaching and authenteining a man. To take this passage and say that women should not teach men is to adopt a liberal method of understanding scripture.

    I thought this was all pretty clear, and I do not find any basis for you statement, “Your above quote begins the slippery slope to a complete rejection of Biblical authority and that is worrying. This is the whole problem of egalitarianismm, it adopts a liberal hermeneutic…you need to at least address this and be honest about it and try to rectify it.”

    At the moment Mark, because you do not even want to seriously look at this passage and deal with the grammar, as Cheryl has done, then it appears as though you are rejecting Biblical authority. You’re right, that is worrying. How about you be honest and instead of storming off to cook up some more half-baked attacks on Cheryl’s exegesis you deal with the passage and either show from the text where Cheryl is wrong or at the very least present your own missing exegesis of the passage.

  121. Craig,

    You can argue with Kostenberger over your issues, but your up against all the evidence. Here is what he saids…

    “These example set forth the NT evidence that ‘oude’ joins terms that denote activities that are either both viewed positively or negetively by the writer or speaker. The implication of this observation for 1 Tim 2:12 is that there are only two acceptable ways of rendering that passage: (1) “i do not permit a woman to teach (error) or to domineer over a man,” or (2) “i do not permit a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man””

    Thus the argument that Paul links the two terms to mean one idea is false. Thus, it cannot be translated, “i do not permit a woman to teach a man in a domineering way”. If one adopts this interpretation it goes against ALL the evidence.

    Continuing on with Kostenberger…

    “That this is indeed the case is strongly suggested by the use of the term ‘didaskein’, which is consistently viewed positively in the New Testament, including the pastorals, when used absolutely, that is, unaccompanied by contextual qualifiers such as those denoting the content of someone’s teaching”

    ” And when the Kroegers contend that ‘the verb here forbids women to teach a wrong doctrine, just as 1 Tim 1:3-4 and Titus 1:9-14 also forbid false teaching’ (also Cheryl’s view), it must be asserted that in 1 Tim 1:3-4 it is ‘eterodidaskalein’, not ‘didaskein’, which is used, while in Titus 1:9-14 there is ample contextual indication that false teaching is in view, a feature that is absent from the context of 1 Tim 2:12″

    “Since, therefore, the term ‘didaskein’ is used absolutely in the NT for an activity that is viewed positively in and of itself, and since ‘oude’ coordinates terms that are either both viewed positively or negetively, ‘authentein’ should be seen as denoting an activity that is veiwed positively in and of itself as well.”

    I could go on. Kostenberger then reseachers all the extra biblical literature coming to the same conclusion. The only way that Cheryl’s interpretation can continue to be considered is if it can be shown that ‘didaskein’ here is negetive, which would be the only NT instance of this happening like this.

  122. Dave,

    “Now, in regards to the use of the word “teach” and “authentein”, how can it be positive in this context? Paul is saying he does not permit it. Nowhere has Paul suggested that it is ok for anyone to authentein anyone else. He has not had a problem with anyone else teaching anyone else, unless they are false teachers (if I am wrong please show me an example). You have admitted that ‘teach’ can be positive or negative. Show me from the text that Paul thinks what this singular woman (this is not assumed – show me in the grammar where there is more than one woman) is doing is positive. Pretty hard since he is asking her to stop. I am happy that both the authentein and teach are negative…so thanks Mr Kostenberger!”

    Let me respond with Kostenberger

    “Before deciding on one of the two patterns for 1 Tim 2:12, a preliminary clarification needs to be made. A distinction should be drawn, especially in the first scenario, between the fact that two activities or concepts are viewed positively in and of themselves, and their prohibition due to circumstances. In the case of 1 Tim 2:12, the writers “I do not permit” has apparently at times been taken to mean that he views the two activities, themselves negetively…However, one should keep in mind that it is possible for the writer to evaluate negetively the exercise of activities he generally views positively, due to certain circumstances, without tainting the two terms themselves.”

    You said
    “Mark, I checked out Titus. Probably would be helpful if you told me exactly where you were in the text. Titus 1:7 speaks of a singular overseer, I assume a generic singular. In 6:10-11 it talks in the plural, but not about overseers, rather those who are unruly, eveil-doers etc (pretty sure they are NOT overseers). So Paul has not switched from using a generis singular to a plural for the same person, if that is what you are suggesting.”

    I did say i din’t have a Bible handy…please forgive me. But here you are. Titus 1:5 says…” and appoint ELDERS (plural) in every town as i directed you”. Then in verse 7, like you said, it switches to the singular… “for an overseer, as God’s steward, must be above reproach…”

    Chapter 6 is not even in view. Here we have the same switch from plural to generic singular as in 1 Tim 2:10-11. Therefore to rely heavily on the singular in the exegesis is a moot point. It is grammatically possible to have generic singulars.

    “Please note though that Cheryl’s exegesis accepts that there can be a singular generic, but that the context shows this to not be the case in 1 Tim 2.”

    Well that’s her assertion isn’t it. I would have thought a plural in verse 10 and then the singular in verse 11 is exactly the proof of a generic singular. Her assertion is simply that…an assertion.

    “I assume the answer is no. In the same way I am simply stating that we have no reason FROM THE TEXT to believe that Paul is not dealing with a situation here that was specific to this church ”

    This is simple false Dave. Paul’s appeal back to creation (13, 14) has always been understood as granting more than a specific situation that needs to be addressed. His prohibition is rooted in the creation order. You may disagree wtih that, but your above assertion is a little overstated. Can we therefore say that ‘a woman false teacher’ is now aloud to authentein a man in our generation? As Schreiner notes…

    “It would be a grave mistake to argue as follows:
    1. First Timothy was written to counteract a specific situation in the life of the Church.
    2. Nothing written to a specific situation is normative for the church today.
    3. Therefore, 1 Timothy contains no directives for the church today.”

    Dave, final point. I am interested to know that if you think there is nothing IN THE TEXT to show it is more than cultural and contextual to the time, what do you find IN THE TEXT’S that prohibits homosexuality as wrong today? Remember, FROM THE TEXT. Please apply your own theory to this practice. I want to see how consistent you are.

  123. Craig,

    If you accept that 1 Tim 2:12 is ‘false teaching’, can you tell me from the text what exactly was false. In other words what content of the teaching is ‘false’? Can you show me that from the text?

    To say it is just ‘false teaching’ is to miss what i have said. In Rev 2:20 there are qualifiers to tell us what is ‘false’ about it…e.g “to practice sexual immorality and eat food sacrificed to idols”.

    Where in 1 Tim 2:12 or indeed in the whole epistle does Paul outline the ‘content’ of this supposed singular false female teacher?

    Do you see what i am asking and distinguishing between? This is exactly Kostenbergers point, when teach is used in the absolute sense with no qualifiers. 1 Tim 2:12 falls into this category, Rev 2:20 does not

  124. Mark, in regards to your Hamburger quote, I agree with him. We cannot assume that Paul thinks teaching is positive or negative, and as we cannot (I assume) agree with authentein we have to see if there is something else in the passage to tell us whether or not Paul views teaching in THIS CONTEXT as negative. It is fair to say that under the circumstances Paul is addressing he sees it as negative, because he does not permit it.

    Now, for you Mark I assume you will say that he does not permit it because a woman should not teach a man. Please note that this is ASSUMED. What we do know is that every time that Paul views teaching as negative in other contexts it is false teaching.

    Your Titus example proves nothing. Yes, Paul uses a plural in 1:5 and switches to a singular in 1:7. We would do the same in English. Why? Because Paul has said he has left Titus to appoint Elders (plural). Then in 1:7 Paul outlines what is required for each one of these Elders.

    This is different to what is happening in the 1 Tim passage. (Please note that when I said, “ In 6:10-11” I made a typo. I was not talking about ch 6 either…Titus does not have a chap 6! I meant 1:10-11). I 1 Tim 2 if it is a generic sing then it does not make sense.

    Mark, you said, “Well that’s her assertion isn’t it. I would have thought a plural in verse 10 and then the singular in verse 11 is exactly the proof of a generic singular. Her assertion is simply that…an assertion.”

    Sorry, not following. I see no proof, you will have to be more specific.

    Mark, you said, “This is simple false Dave. Paul’s appeal back to creation (13, 14) has always been understood as granting more than a specific situation that needs to be addressed. His prohibition is rooted in the creation order. You may disagree wtih that, but your above assertion is a little overstated. Can we therefore say that ‘a woman false teacher’ is now aloud to authentein a man in our generation?”

    Once again you take me where I am not going Mark. I take eternal truths from the way I understand the passage. I take it as a continuing principle that if we are not to be deceived we should be taught. I also take it that when we are taught we should listen, and not be argumentative. Why would I say that a woman false teacher was ok today? Paul has said it was not ok then and I believe it is not ok now. All I am saying is that Paul is dealing with a situation in Ephesus, and so what he has written needs to be understood in that context. THEN we can determine how it applies today.

    So in regards to Schriener I believe that the passage tells us there was a specific situation that Paul was dealing with, but I believe that there are things in it that are normative for today, and therefore I believe it contains ‘directives’ for the church today.

    Mark, you said, “Dave, final point. I am interested to know that if you think there is nothing IN THE TEXT to show it is more than cultural and contextual to the time, what do you find IN THE TEXT’S that prohibits homosexuality as wrong today? Remember, FROM THE TEXT. Please apply your own theory to this practice. I want to see how consistent you are.”

    Speaking of moot points, this is one. I have not said that it is not relevant for today. Please make an attempt to understand me Mark. I gave you two examples, one of Timothy drinking wine and the Corinthians getting drunk on the Supper. I did that to highlight that we need to understand BOTH the local context of the passage AND then how it applies to us. I grow tired of having to defend myself against accusations regarding to things I have not said.

    Now where is your exegesis? You will find it difficult to move anywhere in this discussion until you do. For example you believe that Paul appeals to creation as to why a woman should not teach a man, and yet you need to show some exegesis to back this up. Cheryl’s exegesis deals with this and shows that Paul is simply using an example to explain that ignorance leads to deception.
    This actually fits in with the context!

  125. Mark,
    Just trying to be helpful. You continually use the word “saids”. I think the word you are after is “says”. The only thing I could find in the dictionary for “saids” is “simian acquired immune deficiency syndrome” and I don’t think that is what you mean.

  126. Mark @138,

    You said
    “Thus the argument that Paul links the two terms to mean one idea is false. Thus, it cannot be translated, “i do not permit a woman to teach a man in a domineering way”. If one adopts this interpretation it goes against ALL the evidence.”

    I don’t know why you said this. Sorry if you have misunderstood me. I am happy to accept Kostenberger’s alternative that it can mean
    “i do not permit a woman to teach (error) or to domineer over a man,” .
    As far as I can see, you and Kostenberger dismiss this alternative because you fail to see the ample contextual evidence for false teaching being in view. As I continue to weigh the evidence that Cheryl, Dave and others present concerning this passage verses what you and Kostenberger are saying, it is becoming more and more a slam dunk for Cheryl’s view in my opinion.

  127. Mark @138

    You quoted Kostenberger as saying: “. . . for 1 Tim 2:12 is . . . there are only two acceptable ways of rendering that passage: (1) “I do not permit a woman to teach (error) or to domineer over a man,” or (2) “I do not permit a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man. . . ”

    So why can’t it be (1)? This fits the context of 1 Timothy, where false teaching was a huge issue. You obviously believe that the correct rendering is (2); otherwise we would not be having this discussion.

    As for liberal hermenetics. Christians of all theological persuasions have been ignoring, avoiding or explaining away different bits of scripture from its earliest days.

    Mark, Do you raise your hands when you pray? Do the women in your church wear their hair up, or have their heads covered? Do you allow [or forbid] speaking in tongues in your church gatherings? Do you encourage your people to be zealous for the spiritual gifts, especially prophecy? Does you church baptise by full immersion?
    All of these practises are all Biblical. Which ones are cultural? Which ones are universal? Which ones are timeless commands? Which ones are optimum options? Which ones can be safely ignored?

    Some churches who see themselves as the opposite of liberal do NONE of the above!

  128. “I’m some what in agreement with you about interpretation. Thus a good proper solid exegesis is required. It is not simply good enough to say…’well that doesn’t apply ot us anymore’, nor is it exceptable to say that ‘everything literally applies’.”

    Mark,
    I think I understand what you are trying to say here…only it seems perhaps you used the word “exceptable” when you meant “acceptable.” Was that your intention?
    “Thus something else must help us. Consider that ALL Paul’s teaching on these issues are grounded in creation. Therefore, there is something significant about it.”

    I agree. Yes, and just what that significance IS, is the crux of the matter. Adam was formed first —but there is nothing in Genesis to say why it would give him (and males) exclusive authority in doctrine but not in civil government. Comps give no explanation why one applies but the other does not; in actuality they base their belief on 1 Tim. 2:12 rather than Genesis, and it is erroneous to say that Gen. 2 gives males authority specifically in matters of worship. Worship is never mentioned in Gen.2. What is your explanation for this?

    Egals/mutualists see Paul simply using it as an example to explain that ignorance leads to deception. Just as he did in 2Cor 11:3-4: “But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent’s cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ. For if someone comes to you and preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the Spirit you received, or a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it easily enough.”

    Clearly, women can and do have authority over men (civil government, business, or public ed). Therefore, the significance cannot be understood as a “blanket” hierarchy. Since the rationale that comps use to support male authority based on Genesis 2 is not valid for civil authority, this inconsistency suggests that the entire rationale itself may not be valid. Coupled with Paul’s use of “ignorant, deceived Eve” elsewhere, that is not “slippery” hermeneutics.

    The Comp claim that Paul’s restriction is permanently valid because he supports it from Genesis, also ignores the fact that women are in fact shown teaching scripture to men (Acts18:25), praying, prophesying and evangelizing. In all these ways we DO know that Paul is not making an absolute restriction on women teaching/authenteining. And as Dave pointed out if these were “postitive” things WHY would Paul be restricting them? As I’ve just stated above, women are clearly shown having authority and teaching positively. 🙂
    *The onus is on you to show anyone ever “authenteining” anyone else is positive.* Where is a believer ever given the command “to authentein” another person?

    You wrote: “Here is what he saids…“These example set forth the NT evidence that ‘oude’ joins terms that denote activities that are either both viewed positively or negetively by the writer or speaker. The implication of this observation for 1 Tim 2:12 is that there are only two acceptable ways of rendering that passage: (1) “i do not permit a woman to teach (error) or to domineer over a man,” or (2) “i do not permit a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man””
    Thus the argument that Paul links the two terms to mean one idea is false. Thus, it cannot be translated, “i do not permit a woman to teach a man in a domineering way”. If one adopts this interpretation it goes against ALL the evidence.”
    But, Mark, you already admit that it is positive and allowable for women to teach men at times and have authority at times. Therefore, by your own hermeneutics, then you, yourself, cannot choose number (2) which separates them.

  129. Mark,
    You quote Kostenberger: “Since, therefore, the term ‘didaskein’ is used absolutely in the NT for an activity that is viewed positively in and of itself, and since ‘oude’ coordinates terms that are either both viewed positively or negetively, ‘authentein’ should be seen as denoting an activity that is veiwed positively in and of itself as well.”

    You don’t see that this is simply an assertion?

    I believe that the passage tells us there was a certain situation that Paul was addressing and also that there are things in it normative for today. False teachers are not permitted, but they must be allowed to learn the truth. That in these passages Paul also says that “women will be saved through childbearing” and the universally acknowledged difficulty in interpreting these verses, again clearly reveals that we do not have complete understanding of the situation Paul is addressing. This is an obvious and undeniable indicator of an UNusual situation.

  130. Mark,
    Is this a universal church normative? Or is it possible that this text is the exceptional one?

    After all, if it was a universal rule of such great importance as comps assert, it certainly would be expected that Timothy would have been aware of this rule already.

    Paul does not say that it is a “command of the Lord” but rather “I do not allow.”

  131. Mark,
    I’ve been trying to find the Kostenberger quote where he gives two possible translations for 1 Tim 2:12. Could you please give me the reference?

    Thanks

  132. To all,

    I’ll have to leave it there for a bit as i have a lot of other stuff to do. At least we can agree on one thing, that 1 Tim 2:12 is either both positive or negetive. It’s good to end on a high. A few final points to wrap up.

    Kay,
    Yes that quote is an assertion of Kostenberger, but if you read it in context of his essay, you will see that it is based on facts. He researchers ALL similar constructions in the NT. He then also researchers all extra biblical constructions, which leads him to the above comment. The syntax of 1 Tim 2:12 as his extensive research shows has to be one or the other. Phil Payne did a similar research years back which Kostenberger uses as a beginning ground and expands upon. It is a helpful piece of research in understanding this text.

    Also, i’m not going to go over the same discussion i already had with Dave. The comp position on 1 Tim 2:12 is that this passage restricts women from a certain teaching and exercise of authority, NOT that women cannot teach in other circumstances e.g to other women. To adopt (2) is possible wihtout contradicting other NT texts.

    “After all, if it was a universal rule of such great importance as comps assert, it certainly would be expected that Timothy would have been aware of this rule already. ”

    Let me counter respond… After all, if this was about a false female teacher, it certainly would be expected that Timothy would have been aware of this rule already…

    Marg,
    The quote i gave was out of the printed book. I couldn’t see his essay anywhere on line, although it may be. The book is ‘Women in the Church, A fresh analysis of 1 Tim 2:9-15’ and the quote is on page 89. After doing research on extra biblical documents he gives the same conclusion on page 99. Please note: I quoted the first edition and there is a second edition out now which may change page numbers.

    Final issue about hermeneutics. We need to distinguish between principles and practice. For example, praying with lifted hands… the principle is that we should pray, the practice with lifted hands. Now the practice may change (sitting, standing, bowing etc), but the principle remains. Likewise, the prohibition is rooted in creation therefore the principle remains binding on all churches of all generations. To say this text is simply practice (like Fee) is based on his own presupposition and not the text.

    Anyway, i’m gone for a bit with other things i need to do. Thanks for the discussion

  133. Mark,
    I do wish that you would have had time to answer my question @148:
    Adam was formed first —but there is nothing in Genesis to say why it would give him (and males) exclusive authority in doctrine but not in civil government. Comps give no explanation why one applies but the other does not; in actuality they base their belief on 1 Tim. 2:12 rather than Genesis, and it is erroneous to say that Gen. 2 gives males authority specifically in matters of worship. Worship is never mentioned in Gen.2. What is your explanation for this?

    I do hope you’ll get to it when you next have time for dialog.

  134. Kay,

    Just for you…not all comps believe what you have said, that is too much of a generalisation. Some comps do see the somewhat inconsistency in saying a woman can be in civil leadership/authority and therefore apply the teaching to that spectrum aswell as the church.
    Other comps do not do that. They simply say that these instructions are for the church and therefore only apply in the Church, since the Church is God’s household.

    So i would not say that all comps apply this teaching the same way. Some stick simply to the context, where as others apply it more broadly to everyday life. Either way it is a matter of application that is the issue, not a matter of exegesis. Exegetically, they both believe the same thing about what this text is saying.

    Egals on the other hand have differing opinions on the exegesis (see for example the Fee, Bruce, Kroegers, Payne, Schatz etc) whereas the application is more consistently applied for obvious reasons.

    That’s the best i can offer at the moment on your question/query

    Anyway as i’m sure your aware, comps understand 1 Tim 2:13-14 as Paul drawing on an OT principle in creation to argue for his position on women’s teaching/oversight, NOT the reverse. He is not trying to show that Gen 2 is about worship, but that rather in the Christian Church there are male/female differences that have their root/principle in the creational order. Similarly in 1 Cor 11 he uses the creational order to highlight why he believes a women should cover her head and not disgrace her head. Same thing in Eph 5 about marriage. He is using the creation account as a basis for his principles regarding gender, not vice versa. This is common of Paul, who uses OT scripture to reinforce his argument in his letters.

  135. “Similarly in 1 Cor 11 he uses the creational order to highlight why he believes a women should cover her head and not disgrace her head. Same thing in Eph 5 about marriage. He is using the”

    Mark,
    Thanks for taking time to get back to me. How do you rectify the idea that Paul’s restriction in 2 Tim 2 is permanently valid because Paul supports it from Genesis with the fact that Paul used Genesis to argue for a cultural custom in 1 Cor. 11?
    I mean, you do agree that women no longer need to cover their heads to show propriety, right?

  136. Kay,

    We’ve been over this many times before so there is no point going over it again. Distinguish between principle and practice in your hermeneutics and you will see again that in 1 Cor 11 there is a principle that is rooted in creation (the husband/man is the head of the wife/woman shown through the creational order) and then there is a cultural practice to implement this teaching (head covering).

    So there is complete consistency in these texts. I’m sure you know this already, so why keep asking?

    Cheers

  137. Mark,
    Pardon the typo – not ‘2’ Tim, but 1 Tim.2.
    Traditional scholars say a) we can see a universal principle behind vv. 8-9, but v. 12 is a universal principle, and b) Paul supports v. 12 with evidence from Scripture, thereby indicating that it is a universal rule. However, 1 Cor. 11 shows that Paul can use Scripture even when arguing for a cultural custom, and he could have cited a scripture to support vv. 8-9, as well, without making them universal. The principle behind v. 12 may be a general one, just as it is for 5:9 or 6:1.

    In 1 Tim. 6:1-2, Paul tells slaves to submit to their masters for the sake of the gospel. Paul’s advice is not a permanent approval of slavery, and in the same way, his policy for women may be a temporary need, not a permanent approval of authority restricted to males. Paul did not directly command slavery, but his policy was that slaves should submit to their masters. By doing this, Paul taught something less than God’s ideal in order to advance the gospel—which means that he might have done something similar for women.
    After all, when Paul commands Christian slaves to serve their masters well, there is nothing in the text to indicate that Paul expects this situation to be a temporary one. Is there?

  138. “Distinguish between principle and practice in your hermeneutics and you will see again that in 1 Cor 11 there is a principle that is rooted in creation (the husband/man is the head of the wife/woman shown through the creational order) and then there is a cultural practice to implement this teaching (head covering).”

    Mark,
    Then how can the practice ever be UNimplemented since its very root is Creation? Has Creation changed? No? Then it must be permenantly valid.

  139. Mark,
    I hope that when you time again, you will answer in more detail (@160). It would be very helpful to me if you could explain, step by step, the process you follow that reveals a distinction between them due to some component of the Creation account?

    Because from where I’m standing, it appears that you are basing this doctrine on some un-named thing in the Creation account that allows you to see a difference between:
    a.) head covering rooted in the Creation
    and
    b.) teaching and authenteining rooted in the Creation

    – whereby one is rendered temporary and one is rendered permanent.

    What is *it* in the Creation account that you are basing this upon?

  140. Kay,

    It’s the principle that doesn’t change, not the practice. The practice will change from culture to culture. The priciple in both texts is one of male leadership whether that is in the marriage or in the church. Paul supports both arguments for this from the creation account. The practice at the time in 1 Cor 11 was a head covering for a woman. This practice will change from culture to culture.

    Thus why when i outlined the different practical issues facing comps earlier (some apply to church, some to government ect) this is a great example of trying to implement a practice in our own culture that remains loyal to the principle. We see this extended in seminaries also with the discussions of how much women should ‘teach’ or what they should ‘teach’ before it raises issues with the principle of 1 Tim 2 or 1 Cor 11, 14.

    The challenge for any generation is how to apply the scriptural principles we see in the Bible. This will extend to singing, praying, or whatever.

    The comp issue as i see it is rooted in application. The egal issue as i see it is still rooted in exegesis.

    So to clear things up, i am not saying the head covering is the principle, it is the practice of implementing the principle at the time. It seemed like you thought i was saying the head covering was the principle.

  141. Okay, believe it or not I have a bit of spare time today and I read Mark’s comment. I must answer.

    Mark,
    You are doing a switch and bait. You are talking about a principle and then redefining it so that it becomes completely foreign to the text. You said:

    The priciple in both texts is one of male leadership whether that is in the marriage or in the church.

    Not so. There is not even one text or hint of it that says a husband is to “lead” his wife or that men are to “lead” women. There is also no text or even a hint of it that commands women to be a “follower”. Submission is not “followership”.

    Paul supports both arguments for this from the creation account. The practice at the time in 1 Cor 11 was a head covering for a woman. This practice will change from culture to culture.

    The “practice” was a humanistic cultural one, not a “practice” of the church. Is Paul demanding that the church follow the culture of the day and bring it into the church? The context defies that understanding. For example the humanistic culture was that men were to wear a headcovering when they prayed or worshipped because humans were seen as being unworthy to come to God with their sinful natures thus they must cover up. Paul forbid this practice in men as the humanistic culture was unworthy of Christian consideration. We have been made worthy because of the blood of Christ. Instead of covering up, we to come boldly before the throne of grace and we are all are to have the privileged of reflecting the glory of Christ without veiling.

    2 Corinthians 3:18 (RSV)
    18 And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being changed into his likeness from one degree of glory to another; for this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.

    Hebrews 4:16 (NKJV)

    16 Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

    In fact the Christian woman is to be the glory of both her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ as well as her husband. Her unveiling is not to be a source of shame for those who are knowledgeable in the things of God. And there is such practice identified in the early church as Paul deemed those who would force the tradition of women to cover as being the contentious ones.

    1 Corinthians 11:16 (NKJV)
    16 But if anyone seems to be contentious, we have no such custom, nor do the churches of God.

    Paul allowed women to cover only for the sake of their marriages in a shame based culture that caused women to be put away in divorce for breaking humanistic cultural taboos.

    this is a great example of trying to implement a practice in our own culture that remains loyal to the principle.

    The clear principle throughout the Bible is uncovering of all Christians as we are being changed into His likeness from glory to glory. The other clear principle is that husbands are to serve their wives and lift them up so that their gifts are encouraged and grown and used. Husbands are never encouraged to push down their wive’s gifts or hold them back from service to the Church.

    We see this extended in seminaries also with the discussions of how much women should ‘teach’ or what they should ‘teach’ before it raises issues with the principle of 1 Tim 2 or 1 Cor 11, 14.

    These seminaries who hold back their women are going beyond what is written and taking arguments that Paul is refuting as if the humanistic culture is to be the standard in the body of Christ. That is a faulty standard never set up or practiced by the Church in Scripture.

    The challenge for any generation is how to apply the scriptural principles we see in the Bible. This will extend to singing, praying, or whatever.

    There is no Scriptural principle that holds back the female “sons” of God in their service to God and those who hold back women from singing, praying or using their gift for the benefit of other Christians are practicing the worldly standards found in many third world countries who have long held traditions that suppress women’s speech, their gifts and their worth.

    So to clear things up, i am not saying the head covering is the principle, it is the practice of implementing the principle at the time.

    There is no such principle that holds back women from expressing their God-given gifts. The principle stated rather clearly in Scripture is once again that all of us are to be transformed into His image and to be true image bearers without covering up what God is doing with in us. God’s gifts are required to be used and they are never to be buried by either ourselves or those who believe they are appointed as God’s gatekeepers to the use of His gifts.

    Mark, if I may phrase your principle this way, it would be that you are saying that “head covering” is not the principle it is the implementing of the principle. The implementing of the principle is the subdue of women’s expression and their God given gifts. Therefore it is man’s duty to hold back what God has given such that the self appointed gatekeeper decides the minute details of what a woman can and cannot do. Mark, you continue to flaunt the comp position here as if it is Scriptural and you do so by changing the very principles of Scripture that have been set up as a standard for all of us. You are going to be challenged again and again even though you just don’t get it for I believe you love the doctrine of male supremacy. It sure appears to me that you are not willing to lift a finger to stop the suppression of women’s gifts for the common good of the body of Christ for your rights come before the universal principles of the Word of God.

    By the way I give my reasons for my absence from this blog here http://strivetoenter.com/wim/2010/08/10/1-timothy-215-going-deeper/ on comment #189.

  142. Oh boy, did that feel good to be back even if only for one comment! It is an amazing thing that God is doing an amazing work within me as I have more peace and assurance that God is going to work all of this out for our good and His purposes. Thanks for all who have prayed for me and who have cared about their sister in Christ!

  143. Hi Cheryl,

    I have only one comment to give since i am very busy with other things. Your rhetoric and polemics does nothing but confuse the issues we have been discussing. As for the bait and switch…well here is a good example of it…

    “The “practice” was a humanistic cultural one, not a “practice” of the church. Is Paul demanding that the church follow the culture of the day and bring it into the church? The context defies that understanding. ”

    Your words not mine and words i never suggested or hinted at. Please spare me with polemical, un-helpful dialogue. I’m not going to waste my time. I’m more interested in serious dialogue.

  144. Ok two comments…

    Cheryl, do you/your church pray standing? Sitting? Eyes open? Eyes Shut? Bowing? Prostrating?

    Are you/ your church a product of your culture? Does your culture define some of your ‘practice’? What about a church in the middle east? Should it behave the same way as you in its practices?

    Are many of your practices Biblical or cultural? Do you sing facing a band? Sitting? Do you clap? Lift hands? Do you sing Psalms only? Do you dance?

    Like it or not, practices change from culture to culture. The issue is maintaining the principle in focus. A head covering in Corinth was an appropriate way to display the Biblical principle Paul lays down.

    Ok i’m out…

  145. Hi Mark, my friend (anti-spam word is friend this time!)

    You said:

    Your words not mine and words i never suggested or hinted at. Please spare me with polemical, un-helpful dialogue.

    I beg to differ as I believe the issue of head coverings is not an un-helpful dialog. Did God require men to wear head coverings when they prayed or prophesied? Or was this a humanistic cultural requirement? Did God require women to wear head coverings when they prayed or prophesied in the Jewish assembly or was this a humanistic cultural requirement of the Jews? If you believe that this was God’s idea and He required both men and women to cover then prove it to me from the Scriptures. Where is this law shown? When did the Jews receive this law?

  146. Hi Marg!

    Thanks for your kind words. Yes it does seem like my blog has been buzzing lately although I have not yet had time to read all the comments. I just read Mark’s latest and had a buzzing in my own heart to answer his challenge.

  147. Mark,
    You said:

    Your words not mine and words i never suggested or hinted at. Please spare me with polemical, un-helpful dialogue.

    I know that it isn’t what you said. You said that it is God’s principle and I challenged that and continue to challenge you to prove it. I say that the requirement for the wearing of the head covering during prayer and prophecy for a male was not from God but was from their own humanistic cultural way to cover over their shame and to bring a humbleness to their worship as they believed they were unworthy to come before God without a covering. You say that the head covering is God’s principle. I ask you to show me both the head covering during worship and prayer is God’s idea and He created a principle or law to make sure that His principle was followed.

    Go ahead, my friend and show us all your proof.

  148. Mark,
    You asked:

    Cheryl, do you/your church pray standing? Sitting? Eyes open? Eyes Shut? Bowing? Prostrating?

    What has that got to do with the price of rice in China?

    Are you/ your church a product of your culture? Does your culture define some of your ‘practice’?

    It is “cultural” to have Sunday School, but it follows God’s mandate for all to be allowed to teach one another and to speak in the assembly. Not all cultural things are wrong. But when God forbids them – then they are wrong indeed! What is your point? It is you, is it not, who is making the claim the God has set out a principle of head covering. I didn’t make that claim, you did.

    Like it or not, practices change from culture to culture. The issue is maintaining the principle in focus.

    This is a category error. A practice is not the same thing as a principle.

    A head covering in Corinth was an appropriate way to display the Biblical principle Paul lays down.

    If that was so, then why did Paul forbid men to wear the head covering? If the cultural practice was the correct practice that God ordained, then why is there not an acceptance of the practice rather than Paul stating that the practice shames Christ? If this practice shamed Christ, then can it be a good “principle”? Or is it a humanistic cultural tradition that was not to come into the church?

  149. Cheryl,

    “You say that the head covering is God’s principle.”

    It may be helpful for you to go back over the discussion before making comments which are obviously wrong. Here is what i said in #162, apparently the comment of mine you read and had to respond to…

    “So to clear things up, i am not saying the head covering is the principle”

    So please spare me from this conversation which you have founded on a mis-reading of me. I was quite clear in what i said and remarkably said the opposite to what you accuse me of. I’ll believe it was a mis-read on your part, fair enough! Your polemical nature mixed with mis-reading makes this whole conversation not worth while.

  150. Mark,
    The last thing you said was:

    Ok i’m out…

    I just don’t understand you Mark. Every time you are challenged to prove your point and you are challenged to answer the questions, you take off. Why is that? Were you thinking that you can just make a claim and not have to support it? That wouldn’t be a healthy assumption here. I think most of us are very interested in truth and supported truth claims. I for one don’t accept a claim that is unsupported and a claim that can’t take a challenge. I had hoped that you would come around to loving the challenge because it is the challenge that makes this a “serious dialog”.

  151. Mark,
    You said,

    It may be helpful for you to go back over the discussion before making comments which are obviously wrong. Here is what i said in #162, apparently the comment of mine you read and had to respond to…

    “So to clear things up, i am not saying the head covering is the principle”

    Pardon me. I did misstate that. I should have said that you are claiming that the head covering demonstrates the principle, not that it IS the principle.

    But since it demonstrates the principle, it is also a requirement so that the principle is applied. How does Paul do that with the head covering? How can something that isn’t of God show a principle of God?

  152. Cheryl,

    Again, go and read the comments. We have been having a healthy discussion in your absence. Prior to your arrival i stated that i was busy for a period so i was leaving for a while. I am not stopping because of your supposed ‘challenge’ which is actually a mis-reading of what i said. We probably actually agree that we need to distinguish between biblical priciples and cultural practices which implement the principle. Your sunday school example shows this.

    But you are more interested it appears in debating over non-issues that reading the comments properly. Especially when you come out blazing in a polemical attacking mode. Please read the thread before making any further comments which highlight your mistake.

    Thanks

  153. Mark,
    You said:

    We probably actually agree that we need to distinguish between biblical priciples and cultural practices which implement the principle.

    We can’t agree here at all because my point is that the “cultural practice” of the head covering is an ungodly practice and Paul states so by saying that it shames Christ. The practice of Sunday School is not ungodly nor does it shame Christ. A practice that shames Christ (an ungodly practice) cannot be implemented in the congregation to demonstrate the implementation of a godly principle.

    Especially when you come out blazing in a polemical attacking mode.

    You can call a challenge a “polemical attacking mode” if you want, but if you had the truth, it would seem like you would jump at the chance to prove that the head covering models a godly principle.

  154. Cheryl,

    “We can’t agree here at all because my point is that the “cultural practice” of the head covering is an ungodly practice and Paul states so by saying that it shames Christ.”

    Yes, for the male. Not so however for the female. The opposite is true…

    “but every wife who prays or prophesies with her head UNCOVERED dishonours her head” verse 5
    “for a man ought not to cover his head, since he is the image and glory of God, but woman is the glory of man.” verse 7

    Therefore the head covering of the woman is a cultural way of showing her respect for her husband.

    “A practice that shames Christ (an ungodly practice) cannot be implemented in the congregation to demonstrate the implementation of a godly principle.”

    I agree, but where does Paul say it is shameful for the WOMAN to cover her head? Where does he say that the WOMAN covering her head shames Christ? My point all along has been that the head covering of the woman is a culturally appropriate way (and indeed encouraged) of showing her respect to her head, her husband. This whole ‘practical’ concept is grounded on a theological OT principle in the creational order. This principle remains, where as the practice may change depending on the culture.

    Do you in your congregation now stop men from entering your church with a baseball cap on?

  155. Mark,

    “We can’t agree here at all because my point is that the “cultural practice” of the head covering is an ungodly practice and Paul states so by saying that it shames Christ.”

    Yes, for the male. Not so however for the female. The opposite is true…

    Not true at all. The meaning of the head covering was the same. It symbolized shame of sin and humility or modesty before God (with the addition of modesty before man for the woman). It was an equally ungodly humanistic cultural practice. It was never, ever mandated for women in the Jewish congregation through a command by God. That is where I challenged you to show that it was.

    “but every wife who prays or prophesies with her head UNCOVERED dishonours her head” verse 5
    “for a man ought not to cover his head, since he is the image and glory of God, but woman is the glory of man.” verse 7

    Therefore the head covering of the woman is a cultural way of showing her respect for her husband.

    You are forgetting something. The woman had two heads and each head is dishonored in a different way. Christ is dishonored when she covers because of shame and her husband is dishonored if she doesn’t cover. Paul never says that the woman has only one head. She has two heads that have opposing issues of shame if her one head is an unbeliever. When both were believers there shouldn’t be an issue. The Corinthian women were ones who showed their hair and showed their braids and they did not cover because they were freed from the cultural issue of shame. It was not an issue for most but just for some married women whose husbands were not enlightened to God’s freedom in Christ.

    I agree, but where does Paul say it is shameful for the WOMAN to cover her head?

    He doesn’t have to say that to them since they knew the culture. We are the ones who need to be enlightened as to the culture of that day. The Jewish writings of their traditions reveals their humanistic traditions.

    Where does he say that the WOMAN covering her head shames Christ?

    The covering of the head for the shame of sin shames Christ. This was the tradition that was being knocked down by Paul and Paul did not need to repeat the issue of the shame based head covering. The same issue that shames Christ with the man, is the exact same cause of shame for a woman. We are to come boldly before the throne, not cover up in shame as unworthy servants. Christ has made us worthy by His precious blood.

    My point all along has been that the head covering of the woman is a culturally appropriate way (and indeed encouraged) of showing her respect to her head, her husband.

    But her other head (Christ) deserves respect and her fleshly head needs to come to an understanding that humanistic traditions that are not based on God’s principles are fighting against the gospel that includes the one who took our sin and became our shame bearer. It is an ungodly principle to force a woman to place her fleshly head above her spiritual head by making her wear the sign of her shame.

    This whole ‘practical’ concept is grounded on a theological OT principle in the creational order.

    This is boldly stated by you but has no basis whatsoever in the creation account nor does wearing a head covering have anything to do with creation order. It is a shame based symbol, not a creation order based principle. There is not a single document that you can point to that makes a woman wearing a head covering as a sign that she was created second. It is shame based. Shame. Not honor.

    This principle remains, where as the practice may change depending on the culture.

    Women are told to honor their husbands but women are NEVER told in the Scriptures that they must show this honor by wearing a badge of shame. While they were not forbidden to wear the badge of shame because of the weakness of their husband’s ego, they were never, ever told that God requires them to wear this sign.

    Do you in your congregation now stop men from entering your church with a baseball cap on?

    Do you? Do you know if the baseball cap is the same thing as a shame based head covering?

  156. Ok Cheryl you win…

    I give up in this debate. You say Paul says it shameful…Paul says the opposite that a woman should wear it…

    If we cannot agree on the simple reading of the texts that i provided then we will never agree. Paul never saids that the head covering represents a shameful picture of sin, this is your hypothesis or historical revisionism of jewish texts. You are then applying this to a gentile city under Roman rule when Paul does no such thing. Again more of your argument(s) is based foremost on your own historical reconstruction.

    Paul says that a woman should cover her head when she prays/prophesies. To NOT do this would be shameful according to Paul, yet you wish to make us believe the opposite of what Paul states.

    I’ll sitck with the inspired scripture thanks.

    Speak soon

  157. One other thing, Mark. If you read through the Jewish historical literature on the issue of the woman’s head covering, you will find that her wearing the head covering is not an issue of honoring her husband. It is an issue of not dishonoring or shaming him by going without it. The head covering did not produce honor. It covered her shame. It was a fully shame based item and not in the category of honor.

    What is the Christian way of honoring the head? Honor comes by reflecting the glory of the head. The woman is the glory of the husband and she is free to shine forth that glory without a symbol of shame. In the same way the Christian woman is also the glory of God and she is to shine forth that glory. We are to shine forth, not cover up.

  158. Mark,
    You said:

    You say Paul says it shameful…Paul says the opposite that a woman should wear it…

    You better have another look at the inspired words, because Paul doesn’t say she “should” wear it. He says that if it is a shame, then “let her” wear it. The language is never demanding that she cover, but an allowance if there is an issue of shame involved to the wife or to the husband. Notice very carefully that Paul said “IF”… It is conditional and with an allowance.

    If we cannot agree on the simple reading of the texts that i provided then we will never agree.

    Then why can’t you just see the simple reading of the text instead of making Paul say that women “should” wear the veil? Why would you rush past the “if” conditional statement and change Paul’s allowance into an unconditional command for all women to veil? If you can’t see that you have missed some of the inspired text that changes the meaning when it is missed, then how will we ever have a serious debate?

    Paul never saids that the head covering represents a shameful picture of sin, this is your hypothesis or historical revisionism of jewish texts.

    Paul didn’t need to say it because they knew the reason for the requirement for the head covering in prayer and worship. We are the ones who need to search out the historical meaning for the head covering. How could I be guilty of revisionism of Jewish texts? The issue of the shame based meaning of the covering is not only clear in their tradition, but it is clear in Paul’s comments since he clearly states that the head covering shames Christ. He didn’t say that the head covering honors Christ. Now how are you going to explain how the head covering shames Christ? Where in the Jewish texts are you going to find a meaning for the head covering that shames Christ other than the historical one that I provided? Go ahead. I would love to see you do that.

    I find it quite interesting that you are willing to ignore the historical meaning of the head covering and accuse me of noodling with history when you have no historical evidence on your side at all. You make the head covering to be honored based when it is spoken of in Jewish historical sources as shame based. Where can you find the history of the head covering as honor based? What text will you take us to? The problem as I see it is that you wish it to be honor based because it fits your interpretation. But no where do we find that as a real fact.

    Think back to the garden of Eden. When Adam and Eve sinned what did they do when God came? They covered over their shame. It was God who truly covered their shame through the blood of the animal sacrifice shed on their behalf. If they took off the animal skin that God provided for them and threw it away and put back on their human effort sewn-together fig leafs would that have shamed the one who is the symbol of the lamb slain from the foundation of the world? Our human covering symbolizes shame. There is only one covering for our shame and that is Christ. Wearing any other covering because of the shame of our sin shames Him who IS our sin and shame bearer.

    I’ll sitck with the inspired scripture thanks.

    It would be better if you did. You have changed the symbol of shame into a symbol of honor when the Scriptures never make it a symbol of honor. Has not your own tradition of male supremacy been exchanged for the real truth of God’s Word? It sure appears that is has to me.

  159. Mark,
    I forgot to comment on this one:

    Paul says that a woman should cover her head when she prays/prophesies.

    Not true. Paul never says that she should. He allows her to stay covered under certain conditions.

    To NOT do this would be shameful according to Paul, yet you wish to make us believe the opposite of what Paul states.

    You have misread Paul again. Paul never said that it IS shameful for a woman to not be covered. He said IF. Do you not see the difference between the little word IF and read IS instead? It appears to me that you want us to believe the opposite of what Paul states. Also it is NEVER stated that a woman praying and prophesying without her head covering shames Christ. Never once does he say that. He said that IF it shames her husband…..but he never said that it DOES shame Christ for her to NOT wear the head covering. When you add this into the text you are twisting it. Why do you do that?

    Speak soon

    I am sure we will.

  160. I may need to let others pick this up because I am back to busyness again. I can’t believe that I took a day off today. That is completely unheard of for me. But it does show that I have been listening to a special set of friends who have emailed me and encouraged me to try not to push myself too hard. Thanks guys!

    Break done for now. Back to work tomorrow.

  161. Cheryl,

    I beg to differ on a few points.

    1. There are two direct imperatives in these 16 verses. One in verse 13 and one in verse 6, “Let her cover herself”. This is a command of Paul that the women SHOULD cover herself.

    2. NT scholar David Garland saids the following…”Paul is not imposing Palestinian customs on the Corinthians” (1 Corinthians BECNT, 520)

    I agree with this for the following reason. In Josephus, J.W. 2. 15. 1 Jospehus informs us that a shaved head for a woman was an acceptable practice as part of a vow service.
    Paul, however in these verses saids that a shaved head would be shameful for a woman. Clearly Paul does not have Palestinian Jewish customs in view.

    Also, there are no contextual markers in 1 Cor 11 to assume that Palestinian Jewsih customs are somehow involved in this Pagan gentile city under Roman rule. This is a biased assumption made on the text unwarranted. The text itself does not lead this way.

    Therefore, it seems apparent that you Cheryl are being selective in which ‘Jewish’ texts you select to lay your foundation. I have shown that this foundation is not right, therefore what are we to make of your exegesis? Questionable? Your historical selection is sketchy and selective to suit your own exegetical view.

    They are the only points i wanted to make on this subject

  162. Mark,
    I am continually amazed at how you refuse to engage the challenge and yet you come back as if you can find another source of accusation against me now charging me with being “selective” in the method of exegesis. Sorry my Australian cobber, but you are still shooting blanks as is your habit.

    So let’s see…you didn’t answer the challenge about how the head covering shames Christ. You also previously charged me with paying too much attention to the inspired words of Scripture. Let’s see how you model the way to follow the text. You said:

    1. There are two direct imperatives in these 16 verses. One in verse 13 and one in verse 6, “Let her cover herself”. This is a command of Paul that the women SHOULD cover herself.

    You not only misread the imperative but you completely bypassed a very important inspired word of Scripture. Let’s see what you missed.

    1 Corinthians 11:3 (NAS) But I want you to understand …

    In 1 Corinthians 11:3 who is the “you” that Paul is talking to? Let’s go back a bit further to find out.

    1 Corinthians 10:14, 15 (NAS) Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry. I speak as to wise men; you judge what I say.

    Paul is talking to the congregation that is expected will be able to apply Biblical practices and judgment to disputable matters. Then in verse 6 Paul says:

    1 Corinthians 11:6 (NAS) For if a woman does not cover her head…but if it is disgraceful for a woman…

    Notice the two occurences of “if”? Both are subordinating conditional conjunctions. It may be a very small word in Greek (ei) but it is a very important word because it makes the command conditional.

    Secondly who is the command made to? The woman who does not cover her head? No. It is made to the “you” that Paul is talking to. The woman is third person, the one who is going to receive something. The congregation is to pay attention to the command of Paul’s for they are not commanded to force the woman to obey their own freedom, but they are to allow her to make a decision.

    1 Corinthians 11:6 (NAS) For if a woman does not cover her head, let her also have her hair cut off; but if it is disgraceful for a woman to have her hair cut off or her head shaved, let her cover her head.

    Paul is giving a command to the congregation. When a woman is free from the cultural practice of covering her head, she should also be free to make a decision on whether she cuts her hair short or leave it long. Paul then repeats the command giving the congregation the command to free her to continue to wear the head covering if her conscience brings her disgrace. Paul says “but if” (note again the conditional subordinating conjunction), but if she is in a position of being disgraced by the freedom to cut her hair, then she should not be bugged by your freedom. Let her cover her head until her conscience is also freed. The principle goes back to chapter 10 where our freedom is not to be used to force someone to go against their conscience. She is to be free in Christ to reflect Christ’ glory just as the men are free, but for conscience sake (her’s or her husbands) she is to be allowed to make her decision regarding her own head by taking in to consideration her own conscience and the conscience of her husband.

    In 1 Cor 11:10 it literally says that she is to have authority to make her own decision, but Paul qualifies that with verse 11 that she is not independent of the man so that her actions are not to without the Christian obligation to consider one another with her decision to also consider her husband’s conscience.

    So the imperative is to the congregation to allow her to make her own decision whether to wear or not to wear the head covering. It is vital that we look at the inspired words and see that Paul is commanding the congregation, not the woman. We must also see that Paul makes the command conditional. It is not a command to women to cover up. We must be fair in rightly dividing the Word of Truth and not force fit our interpretation into the text. A conditional command to the congregation simply cannot be force fit to make it a command for women to cover up.

    You also said:

    2. NT scholar David Garland saids the following…”Paul is not imposing Palestinian customs on the Corinthians” (1 Corinthians BECNT, 520)

    I couldn’t agree more. Paul is not forcing the head covering on the Corinthians and to make the text say that requires a twisting of the Scripture.

    1 Jospehus informs us that a shaved head for a woman was an acceptable practice as part of a vow service.

    We don’t even need to go to Josephus for that because God had already set up a vow system where both men and women were allowed to pledge a vow to him and when the vow was complete both men and women were required by God to shave off their hair. Completing a vow is not a shameful act, but a joyful service to God.

    Paul, however in these verses saids that a shaved head would be shameful for a woman. Clearly Paul does not have Palestinian Jewish customs in view.

    This cannot be true. Paul is not saying that it is a shame for a woman to have a shaved head (verse 6). He is saying if if is a shame for her in this situation, then she is to be allowed to cover her head. If you continue to ignore the inspired words and don’t pay attention to them, you are certainly going to miss Paul’s point.

    Also, there are no contextual markers in 1 Cor 11 to assume that Palestinian Jewsih customs are somehow involved in this Pagan gentile city under Roman rule. This is a biased assumption made on the text unwarranted. The text itself does not lead this way.

    You accuse me of being biased, but your own bias appears to be coming through. Paul had just told the Corinthian congregation that thy are not to give any offense to the Jews…

    1 Corinthians 10:31, 32 (NAS) Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. Give no offense either to Jews or to Greeks or to the church of God;

    It is without a doubt that even in the pagan city of Corinth, there were Jews and since his practice was to go to the Jews first, there is no reason to believe that Jewish converts were not in the church at Corinth. Paul mentions that a woman may have her head shaved and she may be disgraced by her shaved head. The woman who would be disgraced by a shaved head and one who would need to cover her shaved head would surely be a Jewish woman who had taken a vow and then completed her vow. The disgrace of Christ by the symbol of the shame of our sin through the head covering and the shaving of the head by a woman for the purpose of a vow were related to the Jews. There is absolutely no doubt that there were Jews in this city and Paul makes mention of issues relating to the Jews. In chapter 14 Paul deals with the reference to the Jewish oral law that forbade women to speak in th assembly. With these references to the Jewish traditions, we can confidently say that Paul was having to deal with Jewish issues regarding traditions.

    Therefore, it seems apparent that you Cheryl are being selective in which ‘Jewish’ texts you select to lay your foundation. I have shown that this foundation is not right, therefore what are we to make of your exegesis?

    It isn’t the “Jewish texts” that are my foundation. The Scripture is my foundation. I have shown you time and time again that you disregard the inspired text and you skip over the inspired words that would contradict your view point. Why do you do that? Why do you accuse me of paying too much attention to the inspired words of Scripture and then skip over the inspired words so as to shoe horn in your own view? Once again you have been corrected.

    So are you going to even try to answer my challenge to show why the head covering shamed Christ? Or are you only here to stir the waters and not learn anything yourself? I would hope that you would realize the truth of the words of God through Paul:

    1 Corinthians 11:11 (NAS) However, in the Lord, neither is woman independent of man, nor is man independent of woman.

    Men also need women and you too need the gifts that God has given through even lowly women.

    They are the only points i wanted to make on this subject

    That does seem to be the case. You do not answer questions and you won’t allow yourself to be challenged to produce an interpretation on these hard passages of Scripture on which you know very little. Perhaps you will change your ways and actually try next time. I do hope so. It is a blessing to be challenged to give a reason for the hope that is within me. I am always willing to bow to the inspired Scriptures and will not allow any to accuse me of sin by charging me with paying too much attention to the inspired words. I think that it is a shame to even utter such an accusation.

    Till next time, Mark. I am sure we will meet here again.

  163. Hi Cheryl,

    “You do not answer questions and you won’t allow yourself to be challenged to produce an interpretation on these hard passages of Scripture on which you know very little. Perhaps you will change your ways and actually try next time.”

    So this isn’t rhetoric?

    “Has not your own tradition of male supremacy been exchanged for the real truth of God’s Word? It sure appears that is has to me.”

    This musn’t be either then? These are simply ‘challenges’ to use your words…yeah right!

    “So are you going to even try to answer my challenge to show why the head covering shamed Christ?”

    This is incredible Cheryl. I asked the same thing in #177. Here is what i said…
    “Where does he say that the WOMAN covering her head shames Christ?”

    Another misreading Cheryl, and another charge of me saying the opposite of what i actually said. Again i’ll simply assume it was another misreading of yours, but maybe not after a third time! You have one chance left 🙂

    Anyway, i’ve read through your attached links to this topic and your above comments and i’m still a little perplexed. Can you please give me a link to a commentator/paper/essay or whatever of someone who agrees in essence with your position to help me understand it better before i comment further. I need some other clarification. Thanks.

  164. Mark,
    You quoted me and then replied:

    “So are you going to even try to answer my challenge to show why the head covering shamed Christ?”

    This is incredible Cheryl. I asked the same thing in #177. Here is what i said…
    “Where does he say that the WOMAN covering her head shames Christ?”

    Still not answering the questions and challenges eh, Mark?

    The answer to your question is that it doesn’t directly say that the woman covering her head shames Christ. The answer I have already given (if you read my links) is that the woman is the only one with TWO heads and so while Paul forbids men from wearing the covering because it shames their head (and the woman has the same head!), he moves on to the dilemma of her head covering which also shames her husband who is also her head. Paul does not need to repeat the issue about shaming her spiritual head and those who received this letter understood why the head covering shamed Christ. It is us who needs to figure that one out.

    Once again, I asked you to provide the reason why the head covering shamed Christ. You seem to have a multitude of ways to avoid answering my questions. I can only assume it is because you do not want to admit that you have no answers at all.

    Another misreading Cheryl, and another charge of me saying the opposite of what i actually said. Again i’ll simply assume it was another misreading of yours, but maybe not after a third time! You have one chance left 🙂

    MY questions to you is a misreading of yours? That is quite novel, Mark. You should get a prize for novel ways to avoid answering my questions. Once again I ask you how the head covering shames the spiritual head (Christ). Paul said that a man who wears the head covering shame his head (Christ). Please provide your answer to why wearing a covering would possibly shame the Lord Jesus Christ.

    Anyway, i’ve read through your attached links to this topic and your above comments and i’m still a little perplexed. Can you please give me a link to a commentator/paper/essay or whatever of someone who agrees in essence with your position to help me understand it better before i comment further. I need some other clarification. Thanks.

    More novel ways of avoiding the questions. So now you demand to know who else agrees with my position before you will answer a Biblical challenge? Do you always avoid answering everyone in these novel ways?

    1 Peter 3:15 (NAS) but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence;

    Should we rewrite the Scripture so that there is no defense required unless the person asking you for your position can quote page number and scholars who agree with their opposing position? I have already on this blog given the names of those who support my view and it changes nothing for you. Until you can show me from the Scripture how such a challenge enables you to continue to refuse to answer questions, it would be a waste of my time.

    You just are not going to answer are you? You aren’t here to answer questions as it appears you are here to attack me personally and charge me with paying too much attention to the actual inspired words of the Scriptural text. How anyone can pay too much attention to God’s word really mystifies me. I only wish you were like me and we could have a solid debate without smoke and mirrors and novel reasons for refusing to answer.

    I really, really LOVE the people on my blog who have demonstrated that they love truth more than they love tradition. I encourage all to keep struggling through these difficult texts because truth is worthy of the work it takes to understand it.

    2 Timothy 2:15 (NAS)
    15 Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.

  165. Cheryl,

    You obviously misunderstood. Your asking me to answer or prove something i never claimed. I never claimed the head covering (of the woman) shames Christ. I showed this to you, since i asked you the same question you are now asking me (see #177) . I fail to see the challenge. You have simply misread me somewhere along the line.

    Also, i have not seen any links regarding 1 Cor 11 that show the commentators that agree with you. Please provide a link if you have one so i can have a look. Thanks

    Finally, your 1 Peter 3 text if you look in the context is telling Peter’s readers (who are being persecuted and suffering) to be ready to give an answer to their hope. That is, their hope during suffering may give an opportunity to express their hope- they should be prepared for that. Unless you think i am persecuted and suffering i fail to see why you quote that at me. That’s an aside anyway.

  166. Mark,
    You said:

    Your asking me to answer or prove something i never claimed. I never claimed the head covering (of the woman) shames Christ.

    I am not asking you to prove that the head covering (of the woman) shames Christ. I am asking you the reason why the head covering (of the man) shames Christ. Stop stalling and answer.

    I am the one that claims that the head covering of the woman shames Christ. And how do I know that? Because I have explained what the head covering means and the head covering for the woman in the area of spirituality and sin means the EXACT same thing as the meaning for the man. It is the shame of sin. Therefore what applies to the man and his shaming his spiritual head MUST also apply to the woman shaming her spiritual head by coming before God in prayer and before the people in prophesying (representing God) that keeps a symbol of our shame. Christ died to take away our shame and our keeping a symbol of that shame, shames our shame bearer.

    Now once again I ask that you provide the reason why the head covering shames Christ. Deal with the man for when we all see your reason we will know whether it also applies to the woman or not. Go ahead, my friend. Your stall tactics are so obvious that all can see. I answer questions. You do not. The question is why not? Is it because you know you have no answers and your position here is one of a mocker and not one of a truth lover? If you are a truth lover, then provide truth. Answer the question.

  167. Mark,

    Finally, your 1 Peter 3 text if you look in the context is telling Peter’s readers (who are being persecuted and suffering) to be ready to give an answer to their hope. That is, their hope during suffering may give an opportunity to express their hope- they should be prepared for that. Unless you think i am persecuted and suffering i fail to see why you quote that at me. That’s an aside anyway.

    So the moral of the 1 Peter 3 text is only give an answer to those who ask you when we are asked because of persecution and suffering? I think not. No answer is ever going to come from you is it? You run away from your obligation to provide answers for the hope that is within you to everyone (not just persecutors) who ask you for your reasons. You fail the test.

    And the thing that really makes me wonder is that you are studying to become a pastor or missionary aren’t you? Are you going to take this attitude into the congregation or mission field where you go? If so, you need to think about your inability to answer and to change your ways and follow the mandate of Scripture. Who are you really trying to please? Your own agenda or your precious Lord and Savior Jesus Christ?

  168. Cheryl,

    Thank you for clarifying your question. Now i can see what it is you are asking. And please stop with your rhetorical hogwash, you sound like you’ve just stepped out of the 16th Century.

    Now you claim ANY head covering shames Christ, correct? Male or female it shames Christ since you base this assumption on palestianian judaism correct?

    Well as i said earlier and as i quoted NT scholar David Garland, i do not think this is the case. Primarily because the text in question does not say so and it seems much more likely that given the context of Corinth, a greco-roman custom is in view.

    “Every man praying or prophesying, having anything down over his head shames his head. And every woman praying or prophesying with the head uncovered shames her head; for it is the same as being shaved”

    So Paul says a man will shame Christ by covering his head. However shall a woman uncover her head, she will shame her husband. You claim that a woman covering her head shames Christ, yet this puts Paul in a pickle since he affirms that not to cover shames her husband. So is Paul really saying to cover to honour the husband, but yet not cover to honour Christ? I could hardly think so, thus why i want you to show me other people who agree with you to help clarify your position. Your ‘if’ argument must not be isolated from the text before it. The assumption in verse 6, “if it is shameful” is that it is shameful since Paul a verse earlier says so.

    I would rather understand the head covering from the greco-roman viewpoint rather than the palestianian judaistic standpoint. The text makes much more sense from within it’s own historical context rather than asserting palestinian understandings.

    Now i know we disagree, but can you now provide me with some links for your exegetical position. Thanks

    P.S Don’t forget that Paul told us not to get involved in useless quarrels as well. I’d rather listen to that than misapply 1 Peter 3:15 in the way you have. If you wont/can’t show me some links to help me understand your position i’ll bail out of this one. Having been so involved in cultic ministry, i’m sure your aware of the individual, novel interpretations of scripture that they produce, and i simply want to see some other serious commentators believe the same exegesis as you..egal or comp.

  169. Hi Mark,

    Thank you for clarifying your question. Now i can see what it is you are asking.

    Well, I am glad that you are roundabout admitting that you were the one that was not understanding, but will you be answering my question?

    And please stop with your rhetorical hogwash, you sound like you’ve just stepped out of the 16th Century.

    This is another on the list for those who use a smoke screen to try to hide the fact that they don’t have any answers but refuse to admit it. It is called Ad Hominem or against the man. It generally involves name calling and personal attacks.

    Now you claim ANY head covering shames Christ, correct? Male or female it shames Christ since you base this assumption on palestianian judaism correct?

    My answer is for those reading these comments because I don’t think that Mark asked this question to actually learn my answer. The head covering that is required for religious purposes for coming before God in prayer or in prophesy has the meaning of the shame of sin, humility before God for the unworthiness because of our sin. The head covering for both the man and the woman means the same thing. The fact that Paul doesn’t mention that the woman’s head covering shames Christ doesn’t mean that it doesn’t. In fact Paul is listing the honor/shame situation between the man and Christ and between the wife and her husband, not to show that the woman is less than the man as if she couldn’t shame Christ in the same way that he does, but that the woman has an option for decision making that the man does not.

    The man only has one head and so removing the object of shame has no dire consequences for him. Christ comes first and since He is the Savior, the man must honor his spiritual head and thus must remove what shames Christ so that Christ gets the honor from the man’s unveiled face reflecting the glory of his spiritual head (Christ).

    The woman is also the glory of God because she too is human and she too has Christ as her spiritual head. These things are understood by Christians even though Paul does not mention that Christ is her head in this passage. Every member of the Body of Christ has Christ as his/her head.

    But the woman’s position is more complicated since the issue of shame pits one head (her spiritual head – Christ) against the other head (her one flesh union head – her husband). Each is shamed by the opposite thing. Christ is shamed if she wears a symbol of the shame of her sin since He died to take away that shame. But in the culture of that day if she removes her head covering, an unbelieving husband who is not understanding of the freedom that we have in Christ may divorce her for shaming him by exposing the hair of her head which was considered a shameful act.

    So Paul doesn’t tell a woman in this situation what to do. He gives her freedom to make her own decision for she must also consider her husband’s feelings so that he will not divorce her. Paul doesn’t demand she cover or uncover. He makes conditional statements saying “if”… I recommend a study on this issue for those who would like to learn more about the head coverings and the issue of Christ’s shame. The 4 volume work by John Lightfoot is quite helpful in understanding the culture of that day especially surrounding the cultural meaning of the head covering in spiritual worship and service. His work was originally published in 1859 and is called “Commentary on the New Testament From the Talmud and Hebraica”. It is still available today.

    Well as i said earlier and as i quoted NT scholar David Garland, i do not think this is the case. Primarily because the text in question does not say so and it seems much more likely that given the context of Corinth, a greco-roman custom is in view.

    This doesn’t answer the question at all about why the had covering shames Christ. Paul’s words in 1 Cor. 11 are clear. The man must not wear the head covering when he prays or prophesies because this shames Christ. Why did Paul say that? What is it about the head covering that shames Christ. Remember that in verse 3 Paul has listed Christ as the head of the man, then Paul talks about how a man can shame his head. Go ahead, Mark, please answer the question.

    Don’t forget, Mark, you were also asked to provide the historical material to prove your claim that the meaning of the woman’s head covering was one of honor rather than dishonor. I am still waiting.

    So Paul says a man will shame Christ by covering his head. However shall a woman uncover her head, she will shame her husband.

    Once again you are just repeating the question but not answering it. Why does Paul insist that if a man covers his head while he prays or prophecies that he will shame Christ? What is the meaning for the head covering that causes a shame to Christ? What is your answer?

    You claim that a woman covering her head shames Christ, yet this puts Paul in a pickle since he affirms that not to cover shames her husband.

    It doesn’t put Paul into a pickle at all. My claim is that the very same reason why Christ is shamed by the man wearing the head covering while praying or prophesying is the exact same reason why a woman wearing the head covering will shame Christ. I have given the meaning of the head covering and it is shame based. It is about our unworthiness before God and for the shame of our sin.

    Paul only lists the additional shame that a woman can bring to her husband through the cultural shame related to marriage. Paul lists the additional shame because only the woman has two heads. The man only has one so he has no cultural obligation that would harm him if he ditched the head covering.

    So is Paul really saying to cover to honour the husband, but yet not cover to honour Christ?

    No, Paul isn’t saying that at all. He tells the congregation that the woman should be allowed to cover if there is a shame based cultural reason for her to cover. But he gives the woman the right to make the decision since a woman with a marital head who would be shamed causes a problem for a woman who wants to be free in Christ to reflect the glory of the Lord. Paul said in 2 Cor. 3:18 that we all are to be with unveiled faces, reflecting the glory of the Lord as we are transformed into his image.

    2 Corinthians 3:18 (NAS)
    18 But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.

    But of course you already knew that didn’t you Mark if you read the links I gave. We have been down this road before and yet you still seem to feign ignorance on what I teach. Why is that Mark? Is it easier to attack and run rather than to give an answer for your own understanding of the shame issue involved with the head covering?

    I could hardly think so, thus why i want you to show me other people who agree with you to help clarify your position.

    My position doesn’t need to be clarified. I have gone over this many times with you and my DVDs are there to be examined for more information. In fact I put this portion up free of charge you youtube here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C33wUR9zcBg

    This is another smoke screen, Mark, and it is quite clear that you are never going to answer my questions are you? The answer that I have provided from the historical record and which is clearly seen in John Lightfoot’s work is that a symbol of the shame of our sin is what shames Christ. It is logical and well attested to in the historical record that lists no meaning of honor for the head covering.

    I would rather understand the head covering from the greco-roman viewpoint rather than the palestianian judaistic standpoint. The text makes much more sense from within it’s own historical context rather than asserting palestinian understandings.

    This adds nothing to the discussion since you provide no answer here at all. What is your answer?

    One can go to the current meaning of the head covering for Muslims and see the issue of modesty/shame still exists. It isn’t rocket science. Women are not to uncover their hair because the hair represents a shameful exposing of something that is private. It is still today shame based.

    Now i know we disagree, but can you now provide me with some links for your exegetical position. Thanks

    I am sure you will have lots of fun reading John Lightfoot’s classical work. But you still have not answered my questions. Lots of words but no answers at all.

    P.S Don’t forget that Paul told us not to get involved in useless quarrels as well. I’d rather listen to that than misapply 1 Peter 3:15 in the way you have.

    More excuses why you will not answer the questions. Quite interesting how you use the Scripture this way to try to cover up the fact that you can’t answer my questions. Also interesting how I have been the one giving the answers while you give out insults. I told my husband I am certain you will never even try to answer my questions and you are going to take off soon, likely with a parting shot, calling more names and insults as you leave. That is because unless you are going to be honest and actually discuss these issues by giving answers instead of insults, the only thing you have left to do is leave. It should be very obvious to all reading this dialog that you have no answers, but you would never accept a logical and historical answer from an egalitarian because learning from a woman, especially on this blog, appears to be beneath you.

    I do think that the “useless quarrels” issue is a good one to allow you to leave with some dignity. If you come back with more insults, I will just have to put you on moderation and then only I will get to read your rants and I don’t think that is what you want. I am convinced that your way of doing business with these texts is to hit with a personal attack and run and I am very concerned for this pattern that I see in you. If you are going to be any kind of a spiritual leader you will have to change your ways because Christ is not honored by insulting the flock.

  170. Mark,
    I have you on moderation for a reason. You may not continue attacking my language as 16th century, attack my view as pig wash, characterize my right to defend my viewpoint as rhetoric and polemics and you are not allowed to misrepresent what I have said about you not engaging an argument. The only thing you got right in the last post that is on moderation is that I have concluded after asking you multiple times to give your understanding of what shames Christ about the head covering, is that you must have no answer since you continue to refuse to give an answer. Until you actually answer my questions you are proving your own inability to answer by skirting the issue and deliberately failing to answer while mocking my own exegesis which is based on both the passage and historical evidence. If you have no idea why Paul spoke about shaming Christ and you are ignorant in this matter then you need to admit that.

    I also have no need to search for quotes from scholars who agree with me since the test for truth is not how many scholars are on one side or another. I am a very busy person and my time is valuable. I do not need to look for a truth test, when I believe the only truth test for an argument is whether it fits with the inspired words of Scripture. If your truth test is what scholar has written his/her view exactly as I have written it, you have the wrong test of truth.

    Since you have given me no argument, I have nothing to test your view by. You have also given no reason why my view does not fit with the shame based head covering that Paul forbids and you have given not a single historical argument to back up your claim that the head covering for the woman has its roots in honor rather than shame.

    I recommend that you read the rules for my blog if you would like to continue to post here. You are no longer allowed to use inflammatory words to attack my view and my personal literary style. I would also recommend that you actually read what I have written about you rather than reinterpret my words. I would like a good discussion with honest interaction where both sides give their view and defend it. You have not even tried to defend your view because you have not even tried to answer my questions and give your view.

    If you follow the rules here for respectful dialog and stop with the personal attacks, I will let your future posts go through. You must also agree to either give your answer to my questions or admit that you do not have any answers. Beating around the bush and attacking my style of communication on your way around the bush is not acceptable. Is this fair enough?

  171. Mark,
    Concerning your second post on moderation, you are continuing to ignore my question and reinterpret it. I have asked you how the head covering shames Christ. Why did Paul insist that the man is not allowed to wear the head covering when he prays or prophesies because wearing the head covering during these activities shames Christ? I have very carefully given my exegesis and understanding of the shame of Christ. I think it has been quite clear by my answers and if anyone doesn’t understand this I am very willing to answer questions on this. But you sir have not answered the question about Christ’s shame? Why is that?

  172. Mark,
    Why not just answer Cheryl’s question? It’s starting to appear that you are not doing it only to spite her in some way.

  173. Mark,
    Bear in mind that it is Cheryl’s blog – it looks rediculous for you to come here taking up space on it to criticize her without even having the courtesy to answer one question she asks you. I’m sorry, but that just isn’t right. If you had a blog, would you want commenters to do that to you?

  174. I am going to go through Mark’s comments on this post and responding to them even though Mark apparently is not wanting to keep to the blog rules, I still believe that his challenges/comments deserve to be answered.

    In post #177 Mark quoted me and said:

    “We can’t agree here at all because my point is that the “cultural practice” of the head covering is an ungodly practice and Paul states so by saying that it shames Christ.”

    Yes, for the male. Not so however for the female. The opposite is true…

    Mark is here claiming that wearing the head covering for the woman does not shame Christ. This is an unwarranted assumption. The issue of shaming Christ is akin to the issue of the glory of God found in verse 7.

    1 Corinthians 11:7 (NAS)
    7 For a man ought not to have his head covered, since he is the image and glory of God; but the woman is the glory of man.

    For the first 16 verses of 1 Corinthians 11, Paul is referencing cultural issues of shame and glory and he also lists one issue of spiritual shame and glory. Paul keys in on shame and glory for the relationship between man and Christ as well as wife and husband. His purpose is to discuss two related issues but not to set up a pattern of exclusion. For example although Paul only mentions that the man is the image and glory of God, this does not exclude the woman as being in the image and having the glory of God. We know for sure in the book of Genesis that the woman was also made in the image of God so Paul’s failure to mention this does not mean that Paul is teaching that the woman is not in the image of God. Paul’s failure to write that the woman is the glory of Christ is also not to be taken as if she is not the glory of Christ because Paul himself writes in 2 Cor. 3:18 that we are all to reflect Christ’s glory.

    So what about the issue of shaming Christ? Just because Paul does not write that the woman wearing the head covering while ministering before God (praying) and ministering before the assembly (prophesying) is shaming Christ by wearing the head covering, it does not mean that there is no shame to Christ just as there is shame when the man wears this symbol. Just as we cannot assume the other things about God’s glory and God’s image, we need to be open to the fact that a woman could be shaming Christ if she wears the covering. How will we know?

    The only way that we can know for sure is to investigate the cultural and/or spiritual meaning of the head covering. Once we know what this sign meant if worn during service to God or service to man, we will know whether the woman wearing her head covering during spiritual service shames Christ.

    This is why I kept pushing Mark to answer the question regarding how the head covering shames Christ. Until we know why wearing a piece of cloth shames Christ, the passage is not going to be understood.

    In my DVD in the section on 1 Corinthians 11, I document the meaning for the head covering during spiritual service. The meaning is humility before God because of the shame of our sin and an unworthiness to come before God with an unveiled face because of that sin. How does that shame Christ? Paul writes in 2 Corinthians that our purpose is to reflect Christ and as we come boldly before the throne of grace, we will be changed from glory to glory as we communicate with our Lord and we reflect His glory. We are able to do this because Christ has died for our sin and shame and taken that upon Himself. But if we come before God with the symbol of shame still upon us, we are acting as if Christ’s work did not fully cleanse us or make us worthy to be heirs of God and come into His presence with full confidence. The symbol of shame on our head shames Christ because it puts the shame of sin back on us instead of remaining on Christ the true shame bearer.

    With this understanding of the symbol during worship that shamed Christ, can you see that the woman’s head covering which was also a symbol of her shame if worn during service to God or service to the assembly would also shame Christ? Since both men and women have had their shame born by Christ, the covering symbolizing our unworthiness and our shame must be given the same spiritual meaning.

    So with my questioning of Mark, I have asked him why the head covering worn by the man shames Christ. If I would have received an answer from him, I could have tested that answer to see if the sign that shamed Christ because of the man would have also shamed Christ because of the woman. But Mark has consistently refused to answer. Why would that be? I believe it is because he has not answer. There is no other spiritual answer to the shame of Christ other than the fact that Christ wants us to reflect His glory rather than once again bear our shame when He has born our shame once and for all.

  175. The other issue that I was pushing Mark on was the question of whether the head covering for the woman was a symbol of honor towards the man or only shame based.

    I brought out the fact that even in our day and age, the head covering for the woman is still shame based and is required to be worn so as not to expose the head hair which is considered a shame to the woman’s husband if seen in public. The head covering has no historical meaning to honor. So when Mark was trying to say that the woman wearing the head covering was honoring her husband, this has no basis in reality.

    Let me give you an example of what I mean. Let’s say that a wife has a bad day and she is grumpy with her husband all day. Let’s say that at the end of the day she tells him that her actions have still shown him honor. He questions her in what way she has shown him honor. She says that she put on clothes that day before she went to work.

    Is the wife putting on clothes a symbol of honor? It isn’t and her husband would look at her with amazement that she would even claim such a thing. The fact is that his wife appearing in public without clothes would shame him, but her wearing clothes in public is not considered an act of honor. The history of the covering is not honor based but shame based.

    So while I kept on pushing Mark to answer about Christ’s shame, he kept avoiding the issue and only focused on the husband’s shame as if Christ’s shame is not important to understand. I contend that if we truly understand what shames Christ about the head covering, then we will be in a position to understand what Paul is getting at.

    Paul’s point is that we want to honor our head, not shame our head. While the cultural issue of the day brought shame onto a husband if his wife’s hair was seen in public, this cultural shame has largely been discarded in “Christianized” countries. So how does a woman honor her husband in Paul’s mind? She reflects his glory. When a woman is using her gifts and serving God in prayer and serving the body in prophesying, she reflects the man’s glory as a full complement to him. What she does in ministry should be seen as a source of pride to him, not a source of shame, as she reflects her unity in humanity with the man.

  176. Lastly for tonight, I had wanted to take Mark through the issue of the head covering as a symbol of honor and ask him why if the head covering honored the man when the wife wore it, then why doesn’t it honor Christ when the man wears it? If it is a consistent symbol of honor, then one would think that wearing the “sign” that one is under the authority of their head (which is what comps have taught) then for the man to wear the symbol that he is under the authority of his head (Christ), you would think that Christ would be honored by that. But the fact is that Paul very specifically says that the man wearing the the head covering during spiritual service to God or man shames Christ. That should tell us right there that there is a huge problem with making the head covering as a sign of honor since it clearly does not honor Christ. So what does the symbol mean during spiritual service? Push comps to answer this. They must answer because the glory of Christ and shaming Christ are key to understanding the passage.

    I believe that Paul is one who consistently answers his own hard passages. He has given us the answer in the second letter to the Corinthians. Our purpose is to reflect Christ. We are not to follow human traditions that distort God’s purposes. The fact is that the woman was also made to reflect Christ and so her spiritual service is not restricted but she is to fully reflect Christ in service to God and service to man. When we hold women back from using their God-given gifts and refuse to let them serve in full reflection of their glory obtained from Christ, we are forcing the head covering of shame on the ones who have been bought by Christ, cleansed of shame by Christ and empowered to fulfill their calling to reflect Christ by His work in them and His gifting them for the common good. A godly husbandly head will allow his wife to shine forth God’s glory with her God-given gifts and calling and he will not hold her back as if she belongs solely to him. She was also created for spiritual service to Christ’s spiritual body and this honors Christ.

  177. What a terribly unfair and unequal marriage it is when, as Cheryl says, the “husband sacrifices and the wife submits”. He sacrifices his will to hers, which she then submits to. This is the brand of self-deceit Hyacinth Bucket practices.

    To me, it is obvious that not only marriage is unequal, but all human relationships are unequal: Laurel and Hardy, Holmes and Watson, Fred and Barney, Magnum and Higgins. The postmodernists would rewrite those naturally functioning relationships into something dysfunctional, unnatural, sterile, socially acceptable, politically correct.

  178. Aaron (real name or house-priest-wannabe???): “The postmodernists would rewrite those naturally functioning relationships into something dysfunctional, unnatural, sterile, socially acceptable, politically correct.”

    These “naturally functioning” relationships, as you would call them, are the result of mankind’s fallen nature. It is a more subtle form of “dog eat dog”, or “king of the hill”. It is something the gentiles have been exercising for, like, ever. It is sinful, fallen, ungodly. At least that is according to the words of Jesus in red who told them, very specifically, that they are not to be called leaders or look to lord over others like the gentiles do.

    No, we are looking to rewrite these broken, earthly, carnal relationships into what God wants to rewrite them into, strong, liberating (for both involved), empowering (for both involved), healing (for both involved), spiritually functional, socially transcendent, and politically revolutionary (the way Jesus showed us to live).

    Aaron, spend a little more time locating and meditating the bedrock of the words of Jesus and stop listening so much to men who love interpret the words of Paul through their dysfunctional, fallen, carnal lenses of men who love the best seats in the house and church.

  179. Sorry, folks, but the continual appeal to the ‘natural order’ or ‘natural flow’ etc is a sorry argument that shoots itself in the foot before it gets out of the starting blocks.

    Get a grip! The natural order that you see and want to use as evidence is nothing short of fallen human nature.
    We don’t base our understanding of the way things should be base on the natural order. That order was broken beyond repair long ago at the fall.
    We, instead, turn to the Author and Finisher of our faith who has thoughts that are higher than our thoughts and ways higher than our ways.
    Yet, the heart is deceitfully wicked and looks for ways to put back in place the ‘natural’, fallen, carnal, sinful order that the sinful nature is comfortable with.

    Aaron, find a better argument. Yours stinks like rotting flesh.

  180. Aaron, that wasn’t appropriate. You came here and charged me with deceit, so you should expect a response to that.

    By the way my next post that I am working on will be about Ephesians 5 so I would think that might be helpful for you especially as I will be quoting a male pastor.

    Aaron, I do hope that you stick around and can keep a respectful tone as you will certainly fit in and be welcome to dialog.

  181. LOL.
    It wasn’t passive aggressive, it was a straight up question in my mind.
    You answered it. Not that it matters one way or another.

    Look… if you start bringing up Hyacinth Bucket and accusing the blog host of deceit, expect a response in kind. If you appeal to worldly culture and expect us to just accept it because this is how the world does it, expect a response concerning how ridiculous such an appeal is. Because it is ridiculous.

    And if you appeal to the traditions of men but label them, “Natural Order”, expect to get called out on that as well. That argument stinks. Get a better one… one we can at least respect and engage in. Then we can have a conversation.

    And above all. Don’t dish it out if you can’t take it.
    Nothing scream, “NOVICE” louder than that.

    P.S.
    Cheryl is far more polite than I am. If you would rather talk to her than me, that’s find. Just show a bit of respect. She is very gracious to answer honest questions and concerns.

  182. Dear Cheryl Schatz! I have red all. And maybe I would like to add some divine thought from a divine point of view. First of All let’s we go to the early stage of the ‘Creation’. Everything that God did create was for His own pleasure and Glory… So this is the point of view.

    Everything God created was very simple yet beautiful without any complications. When God created man was also very simple with men and women. Everything in order with a very simple goal anyway, to multiplied as many. God’s will was that man and women be an intact family that worship, glorify and serve God. All creatures in a harmonious and orderly formation in the correct order and proper. (We can read all of it in the early chapters of Genesis). But after the man fell into sin everything gets messed up. If Adam and Eve didn’t fell into sin, there is no such word as ‘abusive’,
    ‘domestic violence’ and even ’emancipation’, etc.

    In Ephesian 5:24 and 1 Peter 3:5,7,8 and other references from Bible verses, saying
    that match. As a man / child of God belongs to the same position we are both men and women. All of us as God’s priests which Christ as High Priest. but in a spiritual
    role in the household. the role of the priest in the household as positioned in Ephesian 5 and 1 Peter 3,5,7,8 and verse reference alike, God wanted man as the head of household and his wife as a couples who mutually filling, in which the pair will
    complement one another and respond to God assured answer themselves for their actions in the context of the family.

    The role of the priest in the Old Testament can not be eliminated but at fulfilled in the Christian family (The New Covenant). if the first husband to act as a priest in the family because of liability and subject women because of religious laws at the time, now it’s all based on love and sacrifices according to Jesus law. it also symbolized the sacrifice of Jesus in relation to his people to die on the cross. also as a symbol of husband who was willing to die for his wife because of love.

    It is a picture of the exact relationship of husband and wife from God’s perspective.
    The book ‘Songs of Solomon’ much explains it. equality in the position as a priest of
    God does not mean the same position in the obligations and responsibilities. Husband
    and wife had to be different so that a balance occurs. The role of Christ is always the mirror of ‘role model’ for us His children.

    Jesus our bridegroom and we are His bride. We should implement it in our lives as
    husband and wife.

    Shalom

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