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Month: May 2008

Eve was deceived, Adam was not

Eve was deceived, Adam was not

For a PDF copy of this article click here Eve was Deceived pdf file

This article is a refutation of Matt Slick’s article that he has written in an attempt to refute my teaching on 1 Timothy 2:11-15. **While Matt Slick refuses to debate these teachings in writing on this blog, stating that he is concerned that I would possibly edit his statements (I have promised I would not edit his writings and I certainly do not need to do that to refute him!), my offer extends to another neutral web site that would host the debate where neither one of us would be accused of editing the other’s words. I find it quite odd that someone would use so many excuses to avoid a written debate. Matt has already provided his argument in writing on his web site. Why would I need to edit it? I have no problem in refuting what Matt has already written. I can understand why he would not want to enter into a written debate. He doesn’t do as well in a written form of debate. His style is to verbally attack his opponent and that is much harder to do with a written debate. A written debate would hold him accountable to keep his words respectful since it would be open to be viewed by his peers and the church as a whole. If he continues to refuse a written debate I would suggest that it is time for Matt to stop attacking egalitarians as if they are enemies of the gospel of Christ and go on to something else.**

1 Timothy 2:13, 14 makes it very clear that Adam was first created/Adam was not deceived AND Eve was second created/Eve was deceived. We need to pay attention to what Paul said and to understand how this deception and (no deception) relates to the prohibition of 1 Timothy 2:12. See my related articles Why Adam was not deceived;
Why was the sin of Adam more serious than the sin of Eve? part one
Why was the sin of Adam more serious part two

In Matt Slick’s article he says:

The argument from the egalitarians is that Eve was deceived and Adam was not. Therefore, sin entered the world through him because her sin was not as bad as Adams.

This is a misrepresentation of my view. Adam’s sin and Eve’s actual sin were the same. Both of them ate the fruit and both of them sinned in this way. However their reasons for sinning were not the same and my articles listed above show what scripture says about the reasons.

Matt continues:

First of all, even if it were true that her sin was not as bad as Adams, by what logic is it necessary that sin must enter the world through Adam and not Eve? At best, it’s a theory, an opinion.

It is not a theory nor an opinion when scripture tells us about the heart attitude. While scripture says that Eve was thoroughly deceived (2 Cor. 11:3), the scripture also says that Adam acted treacherously against God and the Hebrew term also means to deal treacherously with, to be traitorous, to act unfaithfully, to betray God (Hosea 6:7).

Adam’s motive for sinning was not the same as Eve’s and God held Adam accountable in a greater way because of his motive. God is the one who reads the hearts and he judged between Adam and Eve differently. The sin nature comes through Adam alone. What I would like to ask Matt is where in scripture does it say that sin came through Adam because Adam was given an authority over all mankind and it was his authority that brought sin into the world? Please show me a verse that speaks about Adam’s authority. The fact is there is nothing of the sort in scripture. The only thing that shows a difference between Adam and Eve and their sin is their motive. The one who sinned willfully and with knowledge also was responsible for bringing willful sin into the world. I noticed that in Matt’s article he completely ignored Hosea 6:7. Why does Matt ignore the verse that gives God’s reason for holding Adam accountable for bringing sin into the world? Adam was the one who has betrayed God. It is because it doesn’t fit in with Matt’s “theory” that man was created as a leader, and has an authority that belongs only to the male.

Next Matt writes:

Second, being deceived doesn’t excuse a person… I searched through the Bible examining all 179 occurrences of deceive, deceived, deceit, deception, etc., and I found none that support the idea that being deceived is less an offense to God or somehow excuses a person from the consequence of that deception.

What Matt has failed to answer is Paul’s argument in 1 Timothy 1:13. Paul shows that one who acts in unbelief can receive mercy from God just as he received mercy from God when his violent actions were the result of his ignorance and unbelief.

1 Timothy 1:13 even though I was formerly a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent aggressor. Yet I was shown mercy because I acted ignorantly in unbelief;

When Eve became completely deceived (the Greek in 2 Cor. 11:3 shows that Eve’s deception was full and complete) she was lead astray (spoiled, ruined, corrupted) and she no longer believed God’s truth. Once the truth was taken from her and she believed the lie, she took the fruit fully believing that it was not wrong to eat the fruit. It was in this full and complete deception that she acted in unbelief.

Just as Eve strayed from the truth through deception, so too are the false teachers in Ephesus teaching error because of their ignorance and unbelief:

1 Timothy 1:6 For some men, straying from these things, have turned aside to fruitless discussion,

1 Timothy 1:6 Amplified version But certain individuals have missed the mark on this very matter [and] have wandered away into vain arguments and discussions and purposeless talk.

1 Timothy 1:7 wanting to be teachers of the Law, even though they do not understand either what they are saying or the matters about which they make confident assertions.

In 1 Timothy 1:6 the NASB says “some men”. The Greek is literally “tis” meaning “some”. It is a generic term that can mean males and females not just men. These false teachers are deceived regarding the truth just as Eve was deceived and they have been taken spoil by their error. Paul said that one who sins in such a way through their ignorance and unbelief can receive God’s mercy in spite of such terrible sin. While I have never claimed that deception excuses a person from the consequences of their actions, what I have claimed is that God is able to break into their lives to give these deceive people mercy that they do not deserve. Paul received such mercy (1 Timothy 1:13) and Eve received such mercy (the “seed” which is the Messiah was promised through her and not through the man).

Once again Matt Slick completely ignores the verses that I have brought up to prove my point from scripture. He is not able to disprove the point of the verses and thus has chosen to ignore my argument rather than to deal with it.

Matt Slick asks:

Therefore, are we to conclude that Eve was somehow excused from her sin or that its severity was lessened because she was deceived?

Eve is not excused from her sin; she received mercy because she did not sin willfully. Eve sinned because she was deceived by the deceiver and not because her attitude was deliberate betrayal and God to give her mercy by promising to bring the Messiah through only the woman. Through her the Messiah would destroy the deceiver. What a merciful God we have!

Matt’s next point is that Esau was deceived out of his blessing and he had to suffer the full consequences:

The point is that the effects wrought through deception are powerful and not lessened in consequence upon the one deceived even though it is from deception.

Matt’s use of Esau as an example of someone being deceived appears to be ill advised. Esau sold his birthright to Jacob and the Bible describes his actions as immoral and godless:

Heb 12:16 that there be no immoral or godless person like Esau, who sold his own birthright for a single meal.

While Jacob may have deceived his Father, he did not deceive Esau. Esau willingly sold his birthright for a single meal because he despised his birthright.

Gen 25:34 Then Jacob gave Esau bread and lentil stew; and he ate and drank, and rose and went on his way. Thus Esau despised his birthright.

Esau did not receive mercy because he sold his birthright willingly and with his eyes wide open to what he was doing.

Gen 25:32 Esau said, “Behold, I am about to die; so of what use then is the birthright to me?”

Heb 12:17 For you know that even afterwards, when he desired to inherit the blessing, he was rejected, for he found no place for repentance, though he sought for it with tears.

God rejected Esau and he did not find mercy. He was not deceived. Matt’s application of Esau shows a faulty application and a clear misunderstanding of deception.

Matt ends his article with these words:

Saying that Adam had a greater offense and that is why sin entered the world is nothing more than guesswork. It is an opinion not substantiated by Scripture and not required by logic. Therefore, the argument has no weight.

Matt has not dealt with my argument nor has he dealt with the scriptures that I quoted. So while he ignores my scriptural argument, he can turn a blind eye to that argument and say “that it is an opinion not substantiated by Scripture”. What Matt should have done is deal with the scriptural argument and not ignore the scriptures and then claim victory. Matt’s argument is not convincing neither does it refute my claims.

Also what Matt does not do is give a scriptural proof that Adam was given an authority over humanity and this authority is why sin entered the world. I would encourage Matt to:

1. Show from scripture where it says that sin came into the world because Adam was given special authority.

2. Deal with my scriptural proof or admit that he does not have an answer to the reason why Paul applies the first created/not deceived vs second created/deception of the woman, to the prohibition in 1 Timothy 2:12.

Should complementarians debate egalitarians?

Should complementarians debate egalitarians?

While there has been some genuine, respectful dialog between complementarian and egalitarian scholars, more often than not, the emotions that are brought into the dialog have brought less than respectful debate. The body of Christ is meant to fight the enemy together but when some turn their weapons inward in order to fight their sisters in Christ because of a secondary issue of faith, this certainly brings not only shame upon our Lord Jesus, but harm to some precious members of the body of Christ.

How should we react to the debate when it has become vitriolic? I would like to suggest that we need to stay the course and continue to deal with the issues in a respectful way. When some turn the debate on women teaching the bible authoritatively to men away from the issue and choose to make it instead an attack on the person, we need to refrain from following suit. The Lord Jesus is best served when we treat our brothers in Christ with respect even when that respect is not afforded to us. Yet we do not give up sharing truth and doing so in love. The winning side will be the one who fights for the truth of scripture while passionately debating the issues in love.

While responding with love is a mandate of the Lord Jesus, we may choose the way we debate to limit the abuse that we receive because we can identify those who have a habit of using verbal attacks to try to control the debate. Let me give an example of what can happen through an audio debate when a brother in Christ has a problem holding his emotions back from attacking a fellow believer in Christ.

On April 6, 2006 I received an invitation for an informal dialog on Matt Slick’s Faith and Reason radio show. While the invitation was very kind, I had heard Matt debate other Christians before and I was not impressed with his combative “style”. While he assured me that he would dialog with respect, I did not accept the invitation until September of 2007 when I heard Matt persuading women that their calling from God in ministry would not be a valid call. I decided that it would be worth the risk of being attacked because I truly cared for Matt’s listeners who were only hearing one side of the debate. While I kept my cool and kept my respectful attitude towards Matt, he did not treat me with either respect or Christian charity. Matt must have had some negative feedback about his treatment of me on his radio show because the next week he started out much more calm but in the end he stopped me from giving my biblical understanding of 1 Timothy 2:15, a verse that is key to the understanding of the prohibition in 1 Timothy 2:12, and he lost his cool once again this time raising his voice and calling me a heretic for merely differing with him on this secondary issue.

Later Matt said that he would consider having me back on his radio show only if I would agree to limit my answers to his questions to 1.5 minutes a piece. No one else has ever been given such a strict time limit on his radio show before, but when I agreed to his restrictions, he backed down and would not allow me to debate him even with me under strict time limits. Months later in April and May of 2008 Matt produced articles on a limited portion of my position on women in ministry (he has my full view on my 4 DVD set “Women in Ministry Silenced or Set Free?” but he apparently chose to ignore a good portion of my material) and I have been going through each of the new articles refuting his “refutation”. I have also offered Matt Slick a respectful written debate on his position and his articles since his position has many holes, errors and faulty premises. I agree with Matt’s position in his original offer to have me on his radio show that those who produce a non-interactive position on women in ministry (DVD or written form) should allow themselves to be questioned on that position. I met him on his “playing field” on the radio and now I have asked him to answer my questions on his position in a written debate. Matt has declined to do so. Matt’s position is that he is comfortable with his discussion board, his radio show and Paltalk and he won’t venture anywhere else. I have offered a neutral site where we could both debate without editing or anyone controlling either one of us and apparently he is very sensitive and needs his “safety zone” that he won’t leave. I have also included links to the audio files of both of Matt’s radio shows with me as his “guest”. They are at the bottom of this post. Listen carefully and see how gentleness and respect has been subsequently interpreted by a very sensitive Matt Slick as an “attack” on his person.

Matt has already refused to have me back on his radio show, his discussion board is highly controlled and edited by his vice-president and Paltalk is a forum where Matt can continue to verbally abuse those he disagrees with and it is not suitable for keeping him accountable to a respectful dialog. I am including the type of “respect” that Matt Slick offers. The following are words to me on his discussion board regarding Matt’s “offer” to debate in an audio form. See if this sounds like I would get a fair and respectful audio debate:

Matt titles his comment “this is how it is” found at http://www.christiandiscussionforums.org/v/showthread.php?t=108945&page=2

I’ve already written the section refuting the liberal position on women being pastors/elders. That’s the written form…

I don’t go to your blog. I don’t debate anywhere but here, Paltalk, and the radio.

I’m too busy to get buried in a written debate with you… If you write like you talk on the radio, you’d KILL ME!…. not with competence, but with sssllloooowwww and condescending remarks that would drive me up the wall. No thanks! On the radio you’d not answer a question directly. You beat around the bush, said a ton of NOTHING, to get to some invented position, and acted in a condescending manner. I was ready to shoot myself you were so difficult to deal with. Again, NOT your content, your manner and deliver is what is difficult.

You’ve been refuted by me and those much smarter than me.

I believe you’re given over to your error by God. I believe you are injuring the body of Christ. I further think more of what you’re really made of will become evident.

Now, stop your whining. If you want a debate with me, Paltalk is the place. I’ll put your stupid arguments in the trash where they belong. If you’re not up to it, then go away, stop whining, stop playing around. I mean, sheesh, just get over it and take your liberal feminism somewhere esle and help the enemy undermine the church from some other location.

You want to take the man’s place? Want to compete with men? Okay, bring your pants, step up to the plate….and let’s go, Paltalk! If you accept, I’ll bury you. If you don’t accept, go away.

Does this sound respectful or kind? Matt is not going to debate me in a forum that he cannot have control of or win. I will continue to work through his articles and provide my own “written” refutation. If and when Matt Slick allows me to question him, I will provide those answers and of course my own refutation as appropriate.

Listen to debate #1 here.


Listen to the debate #2 here.

*Note since I copied Matt’s “invitation” to do an audio debate on Paltalk, he has changed his post to read this way:

I’ve already written the section refuting the liberal position on women being pastors/elders. That’s the written form…

I don’t go to your blog. I don’t go to any blogs or boards other than CARM stuff because I don’t want anyone to say I posted somewhere else and say something I didn’t. So, I DO NOT go anywhere….except for tech boards for computer stuff at Microsoft and VB.

I don’t debate anywhere but here, Paltalk, and the radio.

I’m too busy to get buried in a written debate with you… If you write like you talk on the radio, you’d KILL ME!…. not with competence, but with sssllloooowwww and condescending remarks buried in so much error that it would take volumes to expose the idiocy you posit as support for your position. Which only “you” have figured out and the whole Christian church has missed???? LOL. Anyway, you’d drive me up the wall. No thanks! On the radio you rarely answered my questions directly. Instead, you beat around the bush, said a ton of NOTHING, to get to some invented position, and talked down to me in a condescending manner. I was ready to shoot myself to get away from the droning, incessent, drivel you offered for your position. You were so difficult to deal with — NOT because of your content. It was your manner and deliver is what was so irretatingly difficult.

Anyway, you’ve been refuted by me and those much smarter than me. CARM’s women section will continue to grow as you help me expose more errors in your liberal position. Thanks for the assistance in fighting for orthodoxy and working against liberal crap infiltrating the church.

I believe you’re given over to your error by God. I believe you are injuring the body of Christ. I further think that more of what you’re really made of will become evident as you heap error upon error.

Now, stop your whining. If you want a debate with me, Paltalk is the place. I’ll put your stupid arguments in the trash where they belong. If you’re not up to it, then go away, stop whining, stop playing around. I mean, sheesh, just get over it and take your liberal feminism somewhere esle and help the enemy undermine the church from some other location.

You want to take the man’s place and teach and have authority in the church? You want to compete with men? Okay, bring your pants, step up to the plate….and let’s go, Paltalk! If you accept, I’ll bury you. If you don’t accept, go away and stop being a crybaby.

Is "a woman" representative of "all women"?

Is "a woman" representative of "all women"?

This post is an answer to Matt Slicks article called “1 Timothy 2:9-15 “a woman” is representative of all women as “a man”represents all men”.

Matt has been trying to answer my arguments on 1 Timothy 2:111-15 and his article is an attempt at trying to prove that the Greek”gune” or “woman/wife” represents all women.

Matt says:

“As we have seen in the chart in the article The use of the phrase “a woman” in the entire New Testament, Paul uses the phrase “a woman” to refer to only a particular woman 11% of the time while he refers to women and wives in general 77% of the time.”

The first thing that we can note is that Matt didn’t do a chart using the Greek word “gune” but the English word “woman”. This allows Matt to miss some instances of “gune” which is what Paul uses in 1Timothy 2:12. This is because “gune” does not necessarily mean “a woman”. When “gune” is used, it can mean generic woman, but it is not required that it means all women. There is no indefinite article in Greek such as in English where we have indefinite articles a and an. When “gune” is used in the Greek it is possible that “a woman” is meant, but it is also just as easily possible that “the woman” is meant or even “a group” that is qualitatively female, that is “women”.  In Greek, the use of the definite article means the noun is definite, but even if the definite article is not used, it doesn’t mean that it must be indefinite.  It just means that there are 3 possibilities to the meaning , including the possibility that it is meant as a definite.  This is the case of the anarthrous nouns.  See Wallace “Greek Grammar Beyond the Basics” on anarthrous nouns (anarthrous means without an article).

While Matt makes a big deal about percentages, this doesn’t mean much.  Percentages can be interesting, however percentages cannot determine the meaning of a word in a passage.  It is the context of the passage that will determine the meaning not percentages.

If Paul was giving a general prohibition to Timothy that would affect all Christian women for all time, his grammar in verse 15 does not match a general prohibition. Paul on the other hand has used the term “a man” Greek “anthropos” where the context clearly shows that Paul is not talking about a generic man. For example in 2 Corinthians 12:1-21, no matter how high the percentage is that Paul uses “anthropos” to mean generic man, Paul is not talking about men in general in this passage. Paul also did not identify a man who was living with his father’s wife but called him “someone”. This obviously was not about generic man either. The key to understanding Paul is to look at the context, not how many times Paul used “aner” or “anthropos” to mean a generic man rather than a particular man.

Matt says:

“we conclude that the mentioning of Adam and Eve and the created order is dealing with men and women in general, not with a particular woman or just wives.”

If Paul’s mention of Adam and Eve along with created order and deception was about men and women in general, then should we be concluding that all men are not deceived and all women are deceived like Eve? There is more to see in the context of this passage that brings out the importance of Paul’s mention of creation, deception and Adam and Eve.  Paul’s meaning has to be about something other than all generic man and woman.

What Matt misses is that the created order is about deception, not authority. Paul does not say that the man is to have authority over women, but that Adam was not deceived, while Eve was deceived. Paul connects the deception to the prohibition in verse 12 but he also connects it to the solution in verse 15. Paul says neither that Adam is given authority over humanity nor that he is given authority over Eve. We would have to ignore the context in order to make Adam’s authority the subject. Paul connected Adam to the state of “no deception” but Paul did not connect Adam with authority. There is not even one word in this passage that says that Adam had authority or that the man is to have authority over the woman.

Additionally, what does authority have to do with verse 15? How would man’s authority (which is never mentioned in the passage) fit in with the salvation of the single “she” mentioned in verse 15? Even if one could make a single “she” and a plural “they” mean the same thing (i.e. all women), how would man’s authority fit in with this verse? It doesn’t fit. What does fit into the context is the subject of deception. Because of deception a prohibition is given. In spite of her deception “she” will be saved (in the future)… if… Does Paul’s concern about her salvation fit into the context of deception? Or does a concern about salvation fit with all women? Women’s salvation is never questioned in scripture so all women do not fit well with verse 15.

Some take the “salvation” spoken of in verse 15 as been “saved” from dying in child birth but this would break the connection between verses 11-15 and it is not a promise that has been made and kept by God for all godly women. Where is the connection between child birth and the stopping of “a woman” from teaching “a man”? Why would Paul all of a sudden talk about women giving birth to children when he is connecting each verse together with “but” (verse 12) “for” (verse 13) “and” (verse 14) and “but” (verse 15). The flow from verses 11 – 15 is connected from one verse to the next and if we break the connection with verse 15 we have lost the end result that Paul gives because of the command to learn (verse 11) and the prohibition (verse 12).  If she learns the truth and she stops teaching the error, she will be saved out of her deception if she stays in that truth, stays in the truth faith and in her love for God.  Her self-control is needed to stay away from error and deception.  This is how a deceived person will be saved.

Matt concludes with this statement:

“Since Paul mentions the order of creation regarding Adam and Eve in 1 Tim. 2:13 after he mentions authority and again that mentions authority with the created order in 1 Cor. 11:8-10, we can see that there is a pattern Paul teaches that is applied generically in the church.”

There are several very glaring errors in this concluding statement of Matt’s. The first error is that Matt is connecting “authority” with the order of creation when Paul is connecting “deceived” and “not deceived” with the order of creation. The word “authenteo” (verse 12) is a unique word in the scriptures and it is a hotly disputed word never used for spiritual authority elsewhere in scripture. Paul never gives men permission to “authenteo” anyone and so to connect this word with permission for men to “authenteo” women or anyone for that matter, is reading into the passage.

Secondly Matt connects the order of creation with “authority” mentioned in 1 Corinthians 11:10. This is another error of Matt’s since 1 Cor. 11:10 does not have men in authority over women. The Greek word used in verse 10 is exousia and it is the authority that the person has themselves not an authority that is over them. It is never used in scripture to mean that the person is under authority. The words “a symbol of” in verse 10 are not in the original manuscripts but have been added by the translators. The inspired word is that the woman is to have authority over her own head. She is to have authority to make a decision because of the angels. Paul’s use of “because of the angels” is clear when we go back to his reference of the angels earlier in his letter to the Corinthians.

1Co 6:2 Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world? If the world is judged by you, are you not competent to constitute the smallest law courts?
1Co 6:3 Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more matters of this life?

Since the saints will judge the world and they will also judge angels, the woman is to have power to make her own decision concerning what she does or doesn’t wear on her head because in the next life she will also have the responsibility to judge the world and the angels. There is no reference to a man having authority over the woman in this verse at all.

But what about the reference to creation in 1 Cor. 11:12? Is this about the man having authority over the woman as Matt has said? When we test all things, we can see that this is not true.

1Co 11:11 However, in the Lord, neither is woman independent of man, nor is man independent of woman.

1Co 11:12 For as the woman originates from the man, so also the man has his birth through the woman; and all things originate from God.

Paul says that neither the man or the woman is independent of each other. Just as the woman originated from the man so now the man has his origin through her. But neither one is preeminent over the other because God is the ultimate origin of all.

These passages say not one word about the man having authority over the woman. In 1 Timothy 2:13, 14 the reference to creation is about deception and in 1 Cor. 11:12 the reference to creation is about the equality of the man and the woman in that both are dependent on each other and the preeminent one is God. There is absolutely nothing that says that the man has authority over the woman in these passages.

While Matt has been trying to provide a reasoning in 1 Timothy 2 for Paul to be stopping the biblical teaching of all women to all men, he has not given a reasonable explanation for verse 15 which has specific grammar that gives the boundary or “fence” as to how far we can apply verse 12. Without the ability to apply “she” and “they” from verse 15 to something other than the exact same thing (i.e. Matt makes “she” and “they” to mean the same thing), Matt has ignored the boundary markers that force us to go back to find out who the “she” is that Paul is giving the prohibition to. “She” will be saved, Paul says “if”… Paul applies the prohibition to “gune”, and he stops her from teaching because of the verses that follow. It is because of deception, then Paul brings out that her salvation out of that deception is dependent on what “she” and “they” do to make sure she doesn’t fall back into deception. The list of things is the same as what Paul said the deceived teachers fell away from.

1Ti 1:5 But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.
1Ti 1:6 For some men, straying from these things, have turned aside to fruitless discussion,

This is why Paul said that “they” must continue in these things (verse 15). Those who stray from these things, Paul said were falling into deception.

What we don’t have in the passage is Paul saying that “a man” or “any man” is to have authority over “gune” (a woman, wife or the woman) or over another man. Instead we are to serve one another and never lord it over others in the body of Christ.

Scriptural fences

Scriptural fences

One of the helpful things in interpreting scripture is to identify what I call “scriptural fences”. These special verses force us to interpret the passage within the limits set up by the “fence” line. When we can identify a “fence” in scripture, we are well on our way to understanding the apparent contradictions within scripture. In this post I am going to give three examples of scripture “fences”.

The first fence line is found in Revelation chapter 21.

Rev. 21:14 And the wall of the city had twelve foundation stones, and on them were the twelve names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

Now to some, this may not seem like a “fence” but when we read in Acts 1 that the apostles picked Matthias to replace Judas, we have a contradiction that needs to be dealt with:

Act 1:20 “For it is written in the book of Psalms, ‘LET HIS HOMESTEAD BE MADE DESOLATE, AND LET NO ONE DWELL IN IT’; and, ‘LET ANOTHER MAN TAKE HIS OFFICE.’

Act 1:21 “Therefore it is necessary that of the men who have accompanied us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us–

Act 1:22 beginning with the baptism of John until the day that He was taken up from us–one of these must become a witness with us of His resurrection.”

Act 1:23 So they put forward two men, Joseph called Barsabbas (who was also called Justus), and Matthias.

Act 1:24 And they prayed and said, “You, Lord, who know the hearts of all men, show which one of these two You have chosen

Act 1:25 to occupy this ministry and apostleship from which Judas turned aside to go to his own place.”

Act 1:26 And they drew lots for them, and the lot fell to Matthias; and he was added to the eleven apostles.

How could Matthias be an apostle who replaces Judas when Paul claimed to be an apostle picked by the risen Christ? Some may claim that there are actually 13 foundational apostles, but that is impossible. Why? It is because of the scriptural “fence”. The book of Revelation states that they are 12 apostles who form the foundation stones, not 13. If we interpret scripture with the understanding that Revelation 21:14 forms a boundary or a “fence” that places a boundary for our understanding, then we need to make a decision; was Paul the 12th apostle or was Matthias? Did you ever wonder why Paul had to try so hard to prove his apostleship? It is because Psalms 109:8 says that another is to take his (Judas) place and the 11 disciples had already picked the 12th before Paul even came on the scene.

Psalm 109:8 Let his days be few; Let another take his office.

The word for “office” is supervision. It is a place of supervising or overseeing the foundation of the church. For some reason the 11 disciples thought that it was their job to appoint a replacement for Judas, but neither scripture nor revelation from God told them to do this. Because they took authority over something that they were not give authority over, the dice (or lot see verse 26) was cast and this was what determined that Matthias was ordained into ministry with the eleven. However it wasn’t their responsibility. Just as Jesus’ chose the eleven disciples, so he alone was the one who had the authority and responsibility to choose the twelfth apostle to replace Judas. Jesus chose Paul (Romans 1:1; 2 Corinthians 1:1; Galatians 1:1; Ephesians 1:1; 1 Timothy 1:1).  Paul was constantly having to affirm that he was chosen by Christ as an apostle because Matthias already had Paul’s place.  Paul specifically says that he was not ordained by man in Galatians 1:1, yet Matthias WAS the one ordained by man.

Galatians 1:1 PAUL, AN apostle–[special messenger appointed and commissioned and sent out] not from [any body of] men nor by or through any man, but by and through Jesus Christ (the Messiah) and God the Father, Who raised Him from among the dead–

So our understanding that Matthias was not a true foundational apostle is made clear by the scriptural “fence” verse found in Revelation 21:14 and Paul’s claim to be ordained not by man but by Jesus himself.

Another scriptural “fence” is found in 1 Corinthians 14:36. The interpretation of verses 34 & 35 are hemmed in by the “fence” of verse 36. Some don’t know what to do with the “silencing” of women in verses 34 & 35 so they have taken a position of either disregarding these two verses or claiming that these verses are not in the original manuscripts. Yet there is no manuscript where these two verses are not in the text. This means that there is no evidence whatsoever there these verses are not in the original inspired text. While I appreciate Gordon Fee and his scholarly work on other verses, he is one that has taken the position that verses 34 & 35 are an interpolation into the text by some unknown people. The problem that Mr. Fee has in taking this position is that the “fence” of verse 36 will not allow theses verse to be removed or we are left with a “refutation” of nothing. There is also a problem in that if we do this to other texts we don’t like, then any verse we don’t like could likewise be removed from the scriptures with no textual evidence for its removal. We cannot do this and be faithful to God’s inspired word. But if we understand the “fence” that hedges verse 34 & 35 in, we will not have any problem with these verses. Verse 36 starts with the Greek word “n” or English word “what!”

The Exegetical dictionary of the New Testament says “n” is used frequently to introduce rhetorical questions to which a negative answer is expected. 1 Cor. 14:36 is then included as an example of something that we are expected to answer “NO!” to. Thayer’s Greek-English Lexicon also agrees. It lists the “n” as a disjunctive conjunction before a sentence contrary to the one just preceding, to indicate that if one be denied or refuted the other must stand, and Thayer’s also lists 1 Cor. 14:36 as an example of a grammatical structure that stands as denial of verses 34 and 35 where the alternative position of verse 36 must stand.

So Paul is saying “What! The word of God has come only to you (men and not women)?” (No women learning in the church and no women speaking in the church?) and we are to answer this rhetorical question with a “NO!” Verses 34 & 35 are then a quote from the Corinthian letter to Paul and Paul promptly refutes this demand about silencing women by using a disjunctive conjunction that produces a rhetorical question that must be answered in the negative. If verses 34 & 35 are removed as Gordon Fee would like, what would Paul be refuting by the precise grammar of verse 36? There would be nothing to refute! Some say that Paul is refuting what he thinks the Corinthians might say to his own commands in verses 34 & 35 but the precise grammar (the “fence”) of verse 36 refutes this view. The grammar demands that the preceding sentences are refuted by verse 36. Verse 36 is a scriptural “fence” that logically proves that Paul was quoting from the Corinthian’s letter to Paul (1 Corinthians 7:1 Now concerning the things about which you wrote…) and Paul’s grammar has set the refutation solidly within a scriptural “fence”.

The last fence that I would like to look at is the scriptural “fence” in 1 Timothy 2:15. We have talked a lot about this very precise verse in previous posts, but I would like you to see it today as a solid “fence” that sets up the boundaries of the prohibition passage. What this “fence” does is set up the farthest that we can go in interpreting 1 Timothy 2:12. We cannot know who Paul is prohibiting in verse 12 from teaching without limiting the application to knowing who the “she” and who the “they” are in verse 15.

There are those who have tried hard to ignore the “fence” of verse 15. Some have even gone so far as to claim that Paul’s grammar was in error. They claim that while he said “she” AND “they”, what he really meant was “they” or “all women”. This is not correct. The grammar of the verse is precise and we cannot ignore the inspired grammar without doing violence to the text. The problem with the typical hierarchical interpretation of verse 12 is that it does not fall within the boundaries of verse 15. The typical interpretation of verse 12 ignores verse 15 treating it as if part of the inspired grammar is to be ignored and also it is treated as if Paul is introducing a topic that is foreign to the context of the prohibition in verse 12. This too is wrong. For more information on what verse 15 means in context, see my post on the rest of the story.

Trinity DVD update

Trinity DVD update

For those of you who are interested, we have finished filming our Trinity DVD and I am in the process of setting up the editing studio.  This may keep me off line for a day or two.  The editing will continue until about September when it goes for duplication.  The DVD is copyright 2008 and is called:

The Trinity eternity past to eternity future:  explaining truth, exposing error

This will be a 2 DVD set with my script as the 2nd DVD exposing the errors of the eternal functional subordination of the Son.  There are quite a few audio bytes in the DVD that should be quite surprising to many concerning what is now being taught as historic Trinitarian doctrine.

Primogeniture

Primogeniture

In the next of Matt Slick’s articles on women in ministry that I will be reviewing is his article called Primogeniture found at http://www.carm.org/womeninministry/primogeniture.htm

Matt gives what he considers to be the meaning of primogeniture:

“Primogeniture, the biblical teaching that the firstborn has preeminence and authority over those that follow in the family.”

I would like to ask where he gets such a definition from the bible? The correct definition of primogeniture from the dictionary is:

  1. The state of being the first born or eldest child of the same parents.
  2. Law The right of the eldest child, especially the eldest son, to inherit the entire estate of one or both parents.

Where does it say that the firstborn has authority over those that follow in the family? The bible doesn’t say this and Matt seems to have picked up an error from CBMW that primogeniture is about people having the right to rule others just because they are first born.

While the first one born had the right to the inheritance from the Father, God bypassed man’s system at times to give the rights to one who was not firstborn. For example God calls Ephraim his firstborn in Jeremiah 31:9 even though Ephraim was the second one born and it was Manasseh who was the first one born. Jesus is the ultimate first born and he is called the first born of or over all creation as he is the pre-eminent one because he created all things. However the bible never says that a human creature is given the right to rule others just because he is the first one born.

The issue of primogeniture would not even come into play regarding men and women since Adam was not the first of siblings. Eve was his wife, not his brother. There is no place in Genesis that God gave Adam the right to rule over his wife and it wasn’t until sin entered the world that God told Eve in prophesy that this is what Adam would do to her, but God never said that it was his will nor did he tell Adam to rule Eve. His words were to Eve prophetically, not to Adam as a command or the giving of a right.

Matt’s article fails the test of truth in his effort to prove that God has given man the right to rule over women because man was created first. There is no right in primogeniture to rule over others and Jesus said that lording over others was something that was not to be heard among the followers of Christ. Matt’s article proves that those who seek to dominate and control others will grasp at straws to try to prove biblically their “right” to do so. However Matt’s “proof” of a man’s right to rule has no biblical basis at all.

Only one verse prohibits women to teach men?

Only one verse prohibits women to teach men?

In my continuing review of CARM and Matt Slick’s articles on women in ministry, this post is about Matt’s article titled “Only one verse prohibits women to teach men, so it doesn’t apply to the whole church

Matt writes:

First of all, if it is true that the Bible teaches women shouldn’t teach men, even if it is only once, then the argument is settled. Once should be enough.

The first thing should be obvious in that the scriptures don’t say “women shouldn’t teach men”. The bible says the prohibition is concerning “a woman” and “a man”. If this is taken to be universal it would stop not just a woman from teach men but a woman from teaching a single man.

Secondly a prohibition is always stated more than once in scripture because the law states that a person cannot be charged with only one witness. As a result every single universal prohibition by God is stated with at least the “two or three witnesses” that are required. So if we see that God is forbidding any woman from teaching any man (using the generic) then we have a problem because this would make a prohibition unlike any other prohibition in the bible. For more information see my 4 articles on “Does God have one unique law?”
http://strivetoenter.com/wim/2006/11/29/does-god-have-one-unique-law-part-one/

http://strivetoenter.com/wim/2006/12/07/does-god-have-one-unique-law-part-two/

http://strivetoenter.com/wim/2006/12/09/does-god-have-one-unique-law-part-three/

http://strivetoenter.com/wim/2007/01/19/what-law-does-satan-agree-with/

If God made a gender specific prohibition that is only stated once and not repeated as all the other prohibitions are repeated, we need to ask why? Does God make an exception for women so that he doesn’t care if women understand the prohibition so that they can obey? These are important questions and deserve to be answered.

Matt continues:

First of all, 1 Tim. 2:12 is within the context of Paul’s comment in 1 Tim. 3:15, which says, “but in case I am delayed, I write so that you may know how one ought to conduct himself in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and support of the truth.” So, the context of 1 Tim. 2:12 is within Paul’s instructions for the church, the household of God.

What Matt fails to tell us is that Paul’s comment throughout the entire book is to Timothy, not directed to the church. The verse that he quotes from 1 Timothy 3:15 is in the singular not plural. To see this for yourselves you can go to scripture4all.org web site for 1 Timothy 3 and scroll down to verse 15. http://scripture4all.org/OnlineInterlinear/NTpdf/1ti3.pdf The singular grammar is marked by the sg. Here anyone can clearly see that Paul is not saying “I wrote so that you all (plural) know how to act” but rather “I wrote so that you (singular) know how to act…” It is written to Timothy so that he is to know how he should conduct himself in the family of God (not in a building but in the body of Christ). Since the grammar is singular and not plural as to multiple people, then 1 Timothy 3:15 is consistent with a letter to an individual (Timothy). Matt does not explain that the grammar is singular, not plural as he hints it is. What Paul is doing is writing a personal letter to Timothy that we can learn from, but it is written specifically to Timothy and not to the church. It is for Timothy (singular) to know how to act with deceived teachers, widows, elders, etc. Matt should know this since he claims to know Greek grammar.

Matt continues:

Third, how many times does God have to say something for it to be true? Since the command is given, admittedly only once, and since it is in the context of how we are to conduct ourselves in the household of God, then we can conclude that once is enough.

Matt admits that the prohibition is only given once. If there was a universal prohibition that was only repeated once Matt certainly would have included it in his argument. The fact is that there no such universal prohibition that is not repeated so there was no universal prohibition for him to quote. Matt does not address the oddity of a universal prohibition that goes against the norm. Instead he says that God only needs to say a prohibition once. I refer back to my articles on “Does God have one unique law” for the reasoning why God always repeats his laws. Even in the 10 commandments when God gave the prohibition to Moses and Israel, he did not give it only once. God gave the 10 commandments verbally once, written on stone twice and then it was repeated throughout scripture again. God is a God who repeats his prohibitions because he loves us and wants us to know what sin is. God is a God who repeats his prohibitions not because he needs to but because he loves us and wants us to know what sin is, to be convicted of sin and to stay away from sin.

While refusing to stick with my contention that a universal law must be repeated, Matt changes the issue to a universal command. Matt says:

Fourth, if something must be mentioned twice for it to be applied to the church universally, then what do egalitarians do with Hebrews 10:25 which says, “not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more, as you see the day drawing near.” If a universal command for the church needs to appear more than once, then Hebrews 10:25 is not for the whole Church. Is this a sound principle on which to derive doctrinal truths? Not at all.

Hebrews 10:25 is a command but not a universal prohibition. Yet even as a command, there is much in scripture that encourages Christians to come together and to encourage one another so it is repeated in different ways but with the same encouragement. One example is 1 Cor. 14 where Paul gives freedom for all to prophesy so that all may learn and all may be edified.

Matt writes:

Also, what about Matt. 28:19-20, “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” The Great Commission is only given once by Jesus. Does there need to be a second witness for it to apply to the Christian church as a whole? Of course not.

Here Matt gives another example which is not a universal prohibition. The fact is that every single universal prohibition is stated more than once and Paul says that the repetition is for our safety (see my articles above on “One unique law”).

Once again Matt has not proven his point. On the contrary, he is stuck with having to admit that there is no universal prohibition that is only repeated once except for what would certainly be an oddity if it indeed was a universal prohibition (1 Timothy 2:12). His examples are not universal prohibitions and it is our conclusion that 1 Timothy 2:12 fails the test of all universal prohibitions.

But God’s ways are consistent. God warns and warns and warns us of sin because God loves us. He does not give universal prohibitions from a man saying “I am not allowing” nor does he use obscure language that our generation is struggling to understand (authenteo), but he lovingly guides by sending his messengers over and over again to warn of sin. Is it God’s way to repeat the warning of sin? Absolutely! We can see this over and over again in the Old Testament. God is merciful and kind and it is his desire not to confuse people about sin, but to make the charge of sin clear and understandable. He sends his word to us many times so that we can be convinced of sin. This is our God and he is a gracious and merciful God. He is not the God who says I told you once and I am not repeating myself. No our God, the Lord Jesus Christ, teaches and instructs and loves us over and over again so that we do not sin against him.

Public debate between Matt Slick and Cheryl Schatz

Public debate between Matt Slick and Cheryl Schatz

While I am reviewing Matt Slick’s articles on women in ministry, I would like to create this post as a public debate between Matt Slick and myself so that he is allowed to express himself without the restrictions that he has placed on me but in a place where I too am unrestricted. Matt previously said that he would allow a public debate on the radio but that I was restricted to 1.5 minutes for each of my responses. I told Matt that I would do this as long as he gave his questions ahead of time so that I could work hard to limit my answers to 1.5 minutes. I don’t know why he would put such restrictions on me when he has never restricted anyone else on his radio show to speaking only 1.5 minutes, however the fact that I am a woman who is passionately in favor of women’s ability to teach the entire body of Christ with their God-given gifts and Matt is passionately in favor of men ruling women, might give a good indication why he would place me under such strict tight restrictions. However even with my agreement to Matt’s control of the extent of my answers, Matt backed down and said he would not allow me to publicly give a defense in that format.

So instead of a audio debate this is a place for a public written debate and all can see and judge without Matt’s restrictions on me. It is a godly thing to passionately try to influence another. It is not a godly thing to try to control and I believe that the best way to be heard is in a place where Matt cannot try to control. Let’s see if Matt is willing to come and dialog in a professional and respectful way. In the meantime I will continue to review his articles and reveal the faulty premise that Matt has based his view that women are not allowed to teach men authoritatively God’s word. I disagree and believe that women are allowed to teach God’s word authoritatively as 1 Peter 4:11 clearly shows that everyone who has been gifted is allowed to speak the oracles of God.

Answering Matt Slick on she and they from 1 Timothy 2:15

Answering Matt Slick on she and they from 1 Timothy 2:15

This is a continuation of my evaluation of Matt Slick’s articles on women in ministry. Matt has been working for weeks to try to refute my interpretations. I welcome a challenge and I believe that truth will stand up to the test while error will not stand up to the challenge. Matt on the other hand apparently is not comfortable with a challenge on the women’s issue and has not allowed me to challenge him publicly even in a respectful way. ***Matt Slick said that I was not welcome to come back on his radio show unless I could limit my comments to 1.5 minutes. How many people would agree to that? I did agree and Matt backed down. I challenge Matt to a written debate since he cannot speak to me without limiting my audio responses, I think the written format would be a great one. I challenge Matt Slick to come on this blog and continue a public dialog with me on the women’s issue. I have created a public debate post here. He can say what he wants without my editing him and I will respond and then we can let the readers challenge either one of us during question period.*** His vice-president has gone so far as to forbid people from mentioning my name or the name of my blog on CARM’s discussion board and she has either blocked my posts or held them in moderation without warning. While I am appalled at the milieu control that goes on in Matt Slick’s discussion board, I do believe that Matt’s articles that he has written in response to my interpretations are worthy of answering and so the next few posts will be dedicated to refuting of Matt’s reasoning on women in ministry.

The article that I will be referencing from CARM and Matt Slick is called “1 Timothy 2:15, she, they, and salvation through child bearing”. Matt says:

“One of the arguments from the egalitarians use to deny Paul’s prohibition against women being in positions of spiritual authority in the church is that “she” in v.15) refers to the same “a woman” (a particular individual) mentioned in verses 11 and 12. This specific women (sic) had been deceived by someone and had been teaching false doctrines to her husband. So, Paul, to be polite, didn’t name her and just said “a woman.

While Matt characterizes my position as just Paul being “polite”, I don’t see it as “polite” but a concern for those whose names could be connected to false teaching for all of church history. When the teachers who have been deceived are taught the truth and they come to know the truth, their names would still be written down in scripture for all church history as an example of their shame. Paul had no problem exposing those who acted as deliberate deceivers (Hymenaeus and Alexander) or who were acting hypocritically (Peter) but those who were deceived because of their ignorance were never named. I believe that the Holy Spirit kept their names out of scripture so that there was not a legacy of their error connected to their name. These people were eligible to receive God’s grace and they may well turn and receive forgiveness. It is God’s grace that kept their names out of the scriptures.

Matt next says that the text of 1 Timothy 2:12 referring to “a woman” who was a particular individual had been already refuted, but that is not the case. My last two posts here and here reveal the holes in Matt’s arguments. So what is Matt’s answer to who is the “she” and who are the “they” in 1 Timothy 2:15? Matt says:

“He first speaks of women as “she” by analogy in reference to Eve (she) and then moves to “they” as he speaks to women in general, applying the principle of Eve’s “womanness” to them…”

This explanation of the “she” and “they” problem in verse 15 is quite telling. By this reasoning, Matt shows that:

She = women (in general with Eve as an analogy)

They = women in general (with Eve presumably part of the general women’s group)

Therefore “she” is the exact same thing as “they”. This is unreasonable in the precise grammar that Paul uses. A singular cannot equal a plural. I would like Matt to give me another example in scripture where it is permissible to use a singular “she or he” to be equal to “they”. It isn’t anywhere in scripture because it is improper and illogical grammar. Where does he get the idea that one can transfer a “womanness” by making “she” to be equal to “they”? What Matt is doing is trying desperately to ignore the clear meaning of the text. When Paul said “she” AND “they”, he meant exactly that. He was referring to a specific single woman and by “they” Paul means more than one person. “She” can be a part of “they” but “she” cannot be the exact same as “they” or there is a violation of grammar. This is a very weak point in Matt’s argument and an obvious attempt at noodling with the grammar and the text.

The other point that causes Matt a problem with his interpretation is that Paul says that “She will be saved…” Eve cannot be an analogy in a future tense. Eve is dead and cannot do anything about her salvation and neither can all women (they) do anything about Eve’s salvation. Once again Matt’s interpretation have more problems then they solve, if they solve anything at all!

Next Matt tries to give his interpretation of “she will be saved through the childbearing”. Matt says that the phrase is probably a play on words occurring in the Greek. He writes:

“…when it says “she will be saved through the bearing of children if they continue in faith…”

The first thing that I note is the quote that Matt gives is not the correct grammar from the passage. “The child bearing” is a noun not a verb and it is singular (the) not plural.

Matt continues:

“Paul may very well have been referring to this goddess (Artemis) by saying that the Ephesian women who were converts from the cult of Artemis/Soteira were to trust in Christ to deliver them through childbirth instead of looking to the pagan goddess.”

There is a major problem with this view. The grammar in verse 15 is a promise with conditions. “She will be saved through the child bearing if they….” However if we take this passage to mean that the Ephesian women would be saved from harm during the childbirth process then God lied because many Christian women have died giving birth to children. It also does not make sense for Paul to be making a salvation promise by making a side reference to a Greek goddess when it is “THE child bearing” (a specific noun) that is referenced and there is no such reference to ONE child in this goddess worship. Matt’s arguments are not logical in context. There is no biblical support for taking a single “she” and making it equal to a plural “they” nor is there any reference to Artemis in 1 Timothy for Paul to be referring back to, nor is a single childbearing (specific – THE) something from the Artemis worship. Additionally salvation through the birth process was not an actuality so such an interpretation would fall to the ground making God to be one who doesn’t keep his promises.

The plain reading of 1 Timothy 2:15 is that THE seed of the woman (the Messiah) is the one who will bring salvation (as originally promised in Genesis 3:15) and “she” is a single woman who Paul has been talking about who is not the same as “they”. If “she” indeed is a single woman as the grammar proves, then “a woman” and “the woman” from verses 11, 12, 14 are all references to the single deceived woman in Ephesus who Paul has stopped from teaching the man whom she has been influencing in her deception.

Answering Matt Slick's agenda on 1 Timothy 2:12

Answering Matt Slick's agenda on 1 Timothy 2:12

This is part 2 of answering the complementarian objections of Matt Slick on 1 Timothy 2:11-15. See part one here. My article laying out the original argument showing that 1 Timothy 2:12 is a specific woman that Paul forbids from teaching is here.

In Matt’s article on CARM 1 Timothy 2:11-15 here he is making an attempt at refuting my teaching, and in doing so he tries to deny that Paul is talking about false doctrine in the passage, by making a distinction that scripture does not make. Matt tries to prove that the word for false teaching (heterodidaskaleo) must be used when referencing false teaching but this will not stand up under careful inspection of the scriptures as Revelation 2:14, 15, and 20 have the word “teach” that comes from didasko (to teach) and this Greek word is used for teaching that is clearly situations regarding false doctrine. Once again Matt cannot hide the fact that Paul’s reference to the deception of the woman (1 Timothy 2:14) and the deceived false teachers in chapter 1 are the context of the prohibition of 1 Timothy 2:12.

The next issue related to deception is Paul’s reference to the first creation of Adam and the fact that the second one created was deceived. Note that Paul does not tie in the first creation of Adam with leadership nor does he tie in the second creation of Eve with the one must be the follower. Yet Matt says that Adam’s first creation is probably a matter of primogeniture, that is the pre-eminence of the first born. But primogeniture has nothing to do with marriage or male and female issues. It has to do with inheritance of the Father’s estate and in Christ both men and women are inheritors equally. Scripture never says that Adam had preeminence over Eve or that Adam was the only one who had God’s inheritance. This would be reading into the text. It is much better to take the text for what it says not what we can read into the text.

Matt Slick further says that not only are women not to teach men because the man has primogeniture rights but because of Eve’s deception “a woman” is not to teach or exercise authority over “a man”. It is amazing to see that while he had been arguing that 1 Timothy 2:11-15 has nothing to do with deception, he is now arguing that deception is also the reason why “a woman” is not allowed to teach. Now that Matt has agreed that deception is the reason for the prohibition, we can go back and connect 1 Timothy 2:12 to the deceived teachers in chapter 1 who are to be stopped from teaching. There is no doubt from the context that deception is key to understanding the passage and the stopping of one teacher in chapter 2 is related to the stopping of other deceived teachers in chapter 1.

Matt also admits that it is a possibility that the “a man” and “a woman” from 1 Timothy 2:12 could indeed be a husband a wife situation in the congregation. It is good to see Matt agreeing that there is nothing in the passage that would rule out a particular couple that Paul is commanding Timothy to deal with. Matt does say, though, that it is only a theory and the fact that it is a possibility does not make it a fact any more than that “a woman” was a temple prostitute who had a crush on Paul. Matt’s fallacious reasoning amounts to a straw man argument and there is nothing in the passage that would attach such a meaning to a temple prostitute having a crush on Paul. However there is much in chapters 1 & 2 to show that deception was the problem in the congregation and false teachers were to be stopped. Also the grammar of 1 Timothy 2:15 shows that there is a specific “she” and “they” that Paul has been referring to. In a future post I will deal with Matt Slick’s attempt at identifying who the “she” and “they” are from 1 Timothy 2:15 and I will show how his identification is impossible from the text.

I would like to apply Matt Slick’s own words from his article. He says that it is alright to have an opinion, “but it is not alright to insist that is what the text means. If someone does, then he or she is pushing an agenda and not being faithful to the plain reading of the word.” I heartily agree. I would like to ask why Matt Slick has attached a Jewish rule of primogeniture to the marriage of Adam and Eve when God never used this Jewish rule for marriage nor for any male and female issues of teaching or leading? Also, why would Matt Slick deny that the Greek word for “teach” can be used to include false doctrine when a search of this Greek word clearly shows that he hasn’t told us the truth? Why would he deny that deception is the context of 1 Timothy 2:12 when the deception of the woman is clearly given in verse 14? Is it possible that Matt Slick is the one who has an agenda?

Why is Matt Slick not being faithful to the plain reading of the word that lists the deception of the second one created as a reason for Paul’s prohibition? Matt’s final words are very appropriate “But isn’t that the case when people have an agenda? They find ways to make the scriptures fit their “cause”.” Indeed, Matt has tried to make the scriptures fit his “cause” by redefining a Greek word and ignoring the deception of the woman as a reason for the prohibition. His insistence that “a woman” must mean all godly Christian women just doesn’t fit the grammar of 1 Timothy 2:15. Finally after finding no way to refute the teaching that “a woman” is the specific “she” from verse 15, Matt Slick has had to admit that the grammar could include the possibility that Paul was referring to one specific woman. Should we restrict all godly Christian women from using their God-given gifts with the authority of 1 Peter 4:11 just because some have an agenda and want to place all women into the prohibition in a verse that has nothing to do with godly teaching? May it never be!

1 Timothy 2:11-15 answering objections to "a woman"

1 Timothy 2:11-15 answering objections to "a woman"

My article laying out the original argument showing that 1 Timothy 2:12 is a specific woman that Paul forbids from teaching is here.

Matt Slick has put up several articles attempting to refute my reasoning and today I would like to answer Matt’s “refutation”. This article will be an answer to Matt’s article at http://www.carm.org/womeninministry/1Tim2_9-15specific.htm

In Matt Slick’s article he admits that “a woman” and “a man” could be a specific husband and wife. This is quite an admission from Matt since he has been trying to prove that it would be impossible for Paul to be referring to a specific woman. Since we already have that admission from Matt, we will let the context be the key to understanding Paul’s meaning. Matt summarizes the egalitarian argument this way:

“One of the interpretations given to these two verses is that there was a particular married woman who had been deceived (as Eve was deceived), was believing false teachings, was ignorant of the truth, and had been teaching false things to her husband…Even though she was a fallacious teacher, she was being shown mercy because of our (sic) ignorance just as Paul said he was shown mercy due to his ignorance as he mentioned in 1 Timothy 1:13. Once the woman learns the truth, then she will be permitted to teach men and or her husband.”

At this point Matt writes that this interpretation would be reading into the text because the text says:

“absolutely nothing about ‘this woman’ being deceived in ignorance. It isn’t there. Nor is there anything prior to this text that would imply there was a woman was deceived.”

What Matt does is completely ignores Paul’s connection between verse 12 and the reason for the prohibition in verse 14 as the deception of the woman. Since Paul is the one who connects the two, we cannot say that there is no mention of deception. We also find a connection to 1 Timothy 1:3 where Paul is instructing Timothy to stop certain people from teaching strange doctrines. The inspired text here doesn’t say that Timothy is to stop certain “males” but unnamed people teaching error. What has happened to some of these unnamed people who are teaching false doctrine? Paul said that some have turned aside from the truth. Another thing that Matt Slick completely misses in his article is the ones who turned aside from the truth are desiring to be teachers and they do not understanding what they are teaching:

1 Timothy 1:7 wanting to be teachers of the Law, even though they do not understand either what they are saying or the matters about which they make confident assertions.

So there is a connection between 1 Timothy 1 & 2 because Paul is stopping teachers in chapter 1 and stopping a single teacher in chapter 2. The reason Paul gives in chapter 1 is that these teachers are teaching in ignorance and in chapter 2 Paul stops a woman teacher and he ties it in the deception of a woman, another strong connection to the ignorance of the false teachers in chapter 1.

Paul also makes a clear difference in chapter 1 between those who are acting ignorantly in unbelief and those who know the truth and are distorting that truth.

Matt then claims that there is nothing in the context to suggest that there is a woman who has been sincerely deceived and is ignorant of proper doctrines. But what Matt fails to state is that the only command in verses 11 & 12 is the command for Timothy to let “a woman” learn. The fact that Paul makes it mandatory that she is to learn is a strong indication that her teaching is faulty.

Paul’s command for her to learn ties in to chapter 1 where Paul says there are people who are ignorantly teaching error. We know one thing for sure. There is no evidence at all that Paul meant to stop godly people who are teaching correct biblical doctrine. Paul’s theme of error and deception in the church is carried from false deceived teachers to “a woman” who must learn and must stop teaching and it ends with the deception of Eve in Chapter 2. For Matt Slick to say that there is no connection between ignorance (chapter 1 has ignorant people teaching error) or deception (chapter 2 has a deceived woman – verse 14) and the stopping of one teacher reveals Matt’s prejudice.

The next point that Matt tries to make is that Paul tells “a woman” in verse 12 to be quiet instead of telling her to be silent. Matt asks,

“…if the verses are about a woman teaching false things to her husband, then shouldn’t Paul tell her to stop doing it completely?”

The answer is very simple and understandable. If this is indeed a husband and wife situation, it would not be “normal” for Paul to tell a wife that she could not say one word to her husband. For Matt to say that Paul would have had to tell this wife that she couldn’t talk at all to her husband if she was a false teacher is completely illogical. Matt then puts words in Paul’s mouth by saying that this would be telling her “to speak her false doctrines a little more quietly” and he asks “Does that make any sense?” Matt’s question doesn’t make sense. The fact is that Paul could not interfere in a marriage and tell a specific wife that she could not talk to her husband at all. The term “quiet” in verse 12 most certainly refers back to the “quiet” from verse 11 where she is told to learn in a quiet manner. Paul’s first concern is that she learns the truth in a quiet manner, not looking to continue to teach her error, but learning in a quiet manner. He is certainly not telling her that she can teach error, just a “little more quietly”. Paul said she is to be stopped from teaching. Her being in quietness then has nothing to do with continuing false teaching but with her place of learning (verse 11).

Matt then tries to make an issue of the fact that the word “teach” that is forbidden in verse 12 is from the Greek word didasko (to teach) not heterodidaskaleo (to teach falsely). He asks,

“So, if Paul is referring to a certain woman in 2:12 who is teaching false doctrine, then why does he not use the word heterdodaskaleo when referring to her teaching…It doesn’t make sense if the egalitarian position is true.”

The answer is found in the book of Revelation. In Revelation 2:20, Jesus uses the same term for false teaching when he speaks to the church in Thyatira:

Rev 2:20 ‘But I have this against you, that you tolerate the woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, and she teaches and leads My bond-servants astray so that they commit acts of immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols.

Here we see that Jezebel is teaching and leading in false doctrine, yet Jesus himself uses the term didasko. If Jesus can call false teaching “didasko”, and it is also used this way in Revelation 2:14 and 15 then there is no problem in Paul using the same term to include false teaching. The proof that it is false teaching is in the context itself.

The question that I would like to ask Matt back, is where does it make sense from the context of 1 Timothy that Paul was desiring to stop godly Christian women from teaching correct doctrine? No Old Testament passage ever forbids women to teach the bible to men, so why should we even consider that Paul’s goal was to stop godly teaching instead of stopping false doctrine? It only makes sense to those who come to this passage with a preconceived view against women teachers.

Next post will be part 2 of the review of Matt Slick’s “refutation” of the “a woman” argument.

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