Why the eye cannot say to the hand "I don't need you"

April 21, 2011

Why the eye cannot say to the hand/ Women in Ministry by Cheryl Schatz

The body of Christ is a body ministry where each of us are needed and each gift that God has distributed among us is needed.  So why is it that many men say that they do not need for a woman teacher when this personal rejection of their own need is contradicted by 1 Corinthians 12:21?

1 Corinthians 12:21 (NASB95)

21And the eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you”; or again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.”

Why does the Bible say that the eye cannot say to the hand that others may need you, but I have no need of you?  In other words, why is it that some say what the Bible says they cannot say

The Greek term for “cannot” is the negative of dynamai which is one’s ability or capability of doing something, thus the term “cannot say” should mean that the eye has no personal ability to say something.  Kittel’s Theological Dictionary gives an expanded understanding of what it means to not be able to do something:

Words of this stem all have the basic sense of ability or capability. dynamai means a. “to be able” in a general sense, b. “to be able” with reference to the attitude that makes one able, hence sometimes “to will,” and c. (of things) “to be equivalent to,” “to count as,” “to signify.”

Kittel, G., Friedrich, G., & Bromiley, G. W. (1995). Theological Dictionary of the New Testament (186).

With this meaning, we can understand that the reason why the eye cannot say to the hand “I don’t need you” is that the eye has no power through its own will to make the hand unneeded.  It isn’t that the part of the body known as the eye cannot utter these words to another part of the body.  In fact these words are said often enough in the Church.  When it comes to men claiming that they don’t need women teachers, these words are not uncommon.  Instead of an inability to say the words, it is an inability to will it to be so by the mere fact of one’s claim.  The eye’s claim to not need the hand has no effect on the eye’s need nor does the eye’s claim take away the usefulness of the hand for the good of the eye.

Another thing that is noteworthy in the grammar is that the term “cannot say” is either middle or passive.  The middle voice signifies that the subject of the verb is being affected by its own action or is acting upon itself.  Could it be that the eye is being affected by its own claim to not need another body part?  The eye has no power to make the hand not needed, but the mere fact that it confidently claims that it has no need of the hand, is affecting its own well-being, for to deny that you have a need makes you blind to God’s provision for that need.

Cheryl

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266 responses to Why the eye cannot say to the hand "I don't need you"

  1. Hi Cheryl,

    I was just listening to J.S. Bach’s Easter oratorio “The Passion of Saint Matthew” and reflecting on a sermon given by a young woman just out of seminary. Bach’s Easter oratorio gives me goose bumps, and so did Stephanie’s sermon about how helpless (not dumb) sheep are from Satan’s cruel hatred, and how God hurts like a mother ewe when we hurt.

  2. Or as a new boy in town correctly replies to Tom Sawyer: “Your saying so doesn’t make it so”.

  3. Thanks for the comments Greg and gengwall.

    By the way if anyone is interested, I will be speaking at a conference held at Celebration Church in Lakeville, Minnesota, July 21st and 22nd. http://www.themoreconference.com/breakout-sessions/ I have been scheduled for two break out sessions plus a luncheon (costs $15 per person). http://www.themoreconference.com/theres-more/

  4. I should add that the conference is the general assembly of International Ministerial Fellowship. I am very honored that the founder was very insistent that I come and speak to their members. He watched my DVDs and believes that the members of their fellowship can benefit from hearing what I have to say.

  5. That’s great Cheryl. I will check my schedule and see if I can make it. Lakeville is but a 30 min drive for me.

  6. gengwall, I would be very honored and blessed to meet you in person!

  7. Hi, Cheryl. Glad to hear the Lord has brought stability back into your life and ministry. I haven’t stopped by and chatted with you all for awhile. I’ve been busy with my work as an audit support consultant, plus I just completed a 48 page booklet, Egalitarians and the Bible: An Exposition and Defense of the Egalitarian View of Scriptural Inspiration, Authority and Intepretation–which I have sent off to CBE for consideration as resource material. If I may say so, I think it a good little piece of work, and I think people would find helpful and useful. But the Lord’s will be done as far as its being published and distributed.
    Having studied 1 Cor 12 myself, and in no way disagreeing with Cheryl, the only observation I would make on the current topic being discussed is this: We know from the context that Paul’s emphasis is not only on the unity and diversity of the members of the Body of Christ; but also on the parts being rightly related to Christ and one another, so that the Body works together in love and harmoniously accomplishes what the Head desires to accomplish through His Body. Now it seems to me that a clear implication of 12:21 is that the relatioship between the head, eye and hand is that while both eye and hand respond to the Head’s desire to carry out some action, though each has a separate function, yet the relationship between the eye and hand is one of cooperation and interdependency. The eye guides and aids the hand in doing the work the Head desires, but only the Head has the right to tell the hand to begin or to stop. The place of the eye is never to usurp the rule of the Head, but only to guide and aid the hand. And an eye that cannot or will not properly relate to the Head and hand is a diseased eye. Something to think about.

  8. Hi Frank,
    Are you sure you are not giving the “head” some functions that Paul may have attributed more to the “heart”? Did Paul really see the “head” functioning as ruling and telling the other parts of the body what to do? In Paul’s day, did they really understand the human body working in the way you have described?

  9. Hi Craig,
    I was mainly thinking in terms of the Greek anthropology current in Paul’s day, in which the head (kephale) had precedence over the other members of the human body because it was the seat of reason, and so gave direction and purpose to the other members. As for heart (kardia), when used metaphorically of humans, it denotes the center of our intellectual, moral and spiritual life; our inner self; or , if you prefer, our ego, or true person. It’s been a while since I did any thorough study of these terms in the Hebrew and Greek, so if I am in error, I’m sure Cheryl can set us all straight.

    But I certainly don’t understand kephale, as hierarchists do, to mean only “authority over,” nor was I seeking to validate their view of hierarchy of authority in the Church. However, if the head, as the Greek philosophers believed and taught, is the seat of reason and gives direction and purpose to the rest of the human body, I don’t believe my understanding of Paul’s head and body analogy is too far off base.

  10. Hi Frank,
    Thanks for your attempts to clarify, but I am sorry to say that I am still a bit confused.
    @#9 you said

    I certainly don’t understand kephale, as hierarchists do, to mean only “authority over,” nor was I seeking to validate their view of hierarchy of authority in the Church.

    But @#7 you said

    “only the Head has the right to tell the hand to begin or to stop. The place of the eye is never to usurp the rule of the Head,

    Having the right to tell someone what to do, when to begin, when to stop, and having “rule” that others can’t usurp sounds like “having authority” to me. Am I missing something?

  11. Now it seems to me that a clear implication of 12:21 is that the relatioship between the head, eye and hand is that while both eye and hand respond to the Head’s desire to carry out some action, though each has a separate function, yet the relationship between the eye and hand is one of cooperation and interdependency. The eye guides and aids the hand in doing the work the Head desires, but only the Head has the right to tell the hand to begin or to stop. The place of the eye is never to usurp the rule of the Head, but only to guide and aid the hand. And an eye that cannot or will not properly relate to the Head and hand is a diseased eye. Something to think about.

    These are my questions, Frank. In this analogy that Paul provides, in 1 Co 12, who acts as the head, as a particular member of Christ’s body? As far as I can tell, all the members collectively are Christ’s Body therefore the head isn’t refering to Christ. Frank, are you saying that the husband or man in 1 Co 12 is only, as a member of Christ’s Body, the head? If so, I don’t see Paul dividing up the members according to male and female sex.

  12. Frank, are you saying that the husband or man in 1 Co 12 is only, as a member of Christ’s Body, the head?

    To better phrase my question…Are you saying that only males can serve as “the head”, a member of Christ’s Body?

  13. It was certainly not my intention to cause confusion. And I’m sorry if I took us all down a bunny trail, away from the things Cheryl wanted to share with us on this task. And I won’t be able to answer all your questions tonight. So let me begin with those things in 1 Corinthians 12 I think we can agree on, then go on either to correct some of my previous comments, or further clarify them as need be.

    1. I think we would agree that Chapter 12 begins with Paul’s instruction of the erring Corinthians as to the true nature and purpose of the various gifts given by the Holy Spirit (vv.1-11), followed by his analogy of the human body with the Body of Christ (vv.12-26), and then after giving an exemplary list of gifted people who form the Body of Christ (vv.27-28), Paul concludes with an appeal that his readers to “earnestly desire the most helpful gifts” (1 Cor 12:31, NLT).

    2. In the head-body analogy Paul is making here, the focus is on both the unity and diversity of the body parts and on their interdependency for healthy growth and productive activity together. But it is still an analogy between the human body and the Body of Christ. So even though not specifically mentioned in this text, the implication of this text is, as I see it, this: That just as without its head or source of life, wisdom and power, the human could not function or continue to live, even so the Body of Christ, were it separate from the Lord Jesus Christ, who is its head or source of life, wisdom and power–it could not function or live fully either. I think we would all agree on this, yes?

    3. Though there are some similarities to the analogy Paul makes in 1 Cor 11:3-16 and the analogy he makes here in 12:12-26, in terms of diversity and interdependency, true. But it’s the differences that show they are not identical, and are not to be confused with each other. To put it plainly, Paul, in 1 Cor 11:3-16, does not speak of man as the head of woman and God as the head of Christ in terms of “the head and body.” Though he does seem to make such an analogy in Eph. 5:21-33 (which has been discussed elsewhere on this blog), Paul does not do so here in 1 Corinthians.

    Well, it’s midnight and I must rise early for work. So I’ll try finish up my reply tomorrow night. God bless and keep you all in his favor. Amen.

  14. Thanks so far for your reply, Frank. I agree with your #1, but I don’t agree with all of what you said in #2. What it is that I don’t agree with is the implication of the text that you see. I think Paul is using “head” in 1 Co 12, as simply another member of the body like all the others because it reads that the “eye”, “ear” and “head” are all members and if all are members than in this analogy the head wouldn’t be “source of life” as meant in 1 Co 11. I don’t think Christ is a “member” like we are either. And when I read, “And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!” I wonder? Would that be something Paul would even imply that Christ would say? I don’t see how. And then since each member has a gift, and Christ gives the gifts (Eph 4), well he doesn’t need to gift himself? Is the head not a member and therefore not given a gift as the rest of the body?

  15. …Is the head not a member and therefore not given a gift as the rest of the members of the body?

  16. Yes Pinklight. I think I see 1 Cor 12:21 along similar lines. There doesn’t seem to be any indication from the text that the head is any different in value to the body than the eye, or hand or feet. Paul seems to be saying that all are special, all are valuable to the body. The head is not more special than the other parts of the body. Paul seems to me to be trying to make a point, and he could have made the same point by using the stomach, or knee or some other part of the body rather than the head. He is not making a special point just about the head.

  17. In v22ff Paul seems to be indicating that some people do see such parts as the eye and the head as more valuable, but this is not the way we should think.

  18. Paul seems to me to be trying to make a point, and he could have made the same point by using the stomach, or knee or some other part of the body rather than the head. He is not making a special point just about the head.

    Craig, that’s a Great way to put it! :)

  19. Well, almost perfect… lol

  20. Hello, everyone. Though I’m not sure how far I’ll get tonight before I subcumb to the alluring voice of the bed monster, I’ll pickup from where I left off, and answer some of your questions as best as I can.

    1. Pinklight: I am glad that we agree on 13:1 and that the Lord Jesus is not a “mere” member of his own Body and, as you put it, we are “all collectively” the Body of Christ. Now as to your questions.
    a. “In this analogy Paul provides in 1 Cor 12, who, as a particular member, acts as head of Christ’s body?” Strictly speaking, no one, man or woman, can or should. For Christ alone, as the One in whom the Body finds its source of life, wisdom and power; the One in whom the Church finds its organizing principle and purpose; the One, who through the Holy Spirit, gifts and equips his Body to carry on his ministry of reconciling an alienated and lost humanity; he alone is the Head of the Body and should be acknowledged as such. “Christ existed before all things, and in union with him all things have their proper place. He is the head of his body, the church; he is the source of the body’s life. He is the first-born Son, who was raised from death, in order that he alone might have the first place in all things” (Col. 1:17-18, TEV).
    b. “And when I read that ‘”The head cannot say to the feet, ‘I don’t need you!”‘ I wonder? Would that be something Paul would even imply Christ would say?” Very good question! Made me take a closer at 12:14-21 in the context of 1 Corinthians as a whole; and I agree that “head” in 12:21 is not a direct reference to Christ himself; rather I see it now as a rebuke to certain people, who see themselves as self-sufficient and independent of the other members who they see as their inferiors; maybe even presuming to be the “head” of the house churches in Corinth. And so some of my previous comments regarding the head, eye and hand can be disregarded since they really are not connected with Paul’s intent in 12:21.

    Alas, my friends. I can no longer resist the call of the bed monster. A good night to you all, and God’s grace, peace and mercy be with you all. Amen.

  21. Thanks for the discussion Frank. I am just thinking aloud as usual, and I could well be wrong, so you or anyone can feel free to shoot me down in flames if you think so.
    Pinklight asked you “In this analogy Paul provides in 1 Cor 12, who, as a particular member, acts as head of Christ’s body?”
    You replied

    “ Strictly speaking, no one, man or woman, can or should. For Christ alone ……………… is the Head of the Body and should be acknowledged as such.”

    This was in answer to Pinklight’s question about 1 Cor 12. I may have missed it, but I can’t find anywhere that Paul says that Christ is the head of the body that he is talking about in 1 Cor 12. Can you?
    Just thought I would clarify my thinking a bit and see if you agree or not.
    In 1 Cor 12:27 Paul says that “you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.” He doesn’t say “Christ is the head of the body, and you are from the neck down to the feet!” Thinking in these terms seems to make the passage very confusing. For instance, aren’t the eyes and the ears and the nose that he refers to part of the head, and yet these seem to be referring to Christians as part of the body.
    If I consider my body, I am not just the head of it, I am the whole body. It is all me. This is how I understand what Paul means in 1 Cor 12. Christ is the whole of his body, not just the part above the neck. We are all parts of his body, including the head.
    Do you or others agree with these thoughts or am I on the wrong track?

  22. Exactly, Craig. Paul is using a body metaphor here for the church. Elsewhere he uses a head-body metaphor for Christ’s relationship with the church. I think it’s a mistake to conflate the two metaphors or to try to make them apply interchangeably. It’s also a mistake to see some kind of mystical, literal actuality where Paul intended a metaphor. In other words, Christ is not in some real, mystical sense an actual head, and we are not in some real, mystical sense an actual body. Nor is a church leader an actual mouth, or a prophet an actual eye, or a missionary an actual pair of legs. . .

  23. I agree Kristen, although I think this passage is still instructive in how Paul views the interrelation of body parts, whether applied to the church in toto or the Christ/Church relationship. Paul does not portray the head as “leading” or “in charge of” the body in any of his metaphors, nor does portray the body as subservient in any way to the head. Many commentators make two fundamental mistakes. You point out the first – they miss that it is a metaphor. But they also too often apply English language based definitions to “head”.

  24. Thanks Kristen and Gengwall for your helpful comments.
    Just wanting to toss out some more ideas for your comments. I hope they are not too confusing so you can follow what I am thinking. Some of them are just new thoughts for me and I haven’t thought a lot about how it fits with all the relevant passages. They may be totally different to what you others think, or you may agree.
    If 1 Cor 12 is just a body metaphor and not a head-body metaphor, I am wondering about whether Paul may not be using a head-body metaphor in Eph/Col either, but rather adding the concept of a head (source) to the existing body (including the head) metaphor.
    With what I am thinking about, the church is the body (including the head) of Christ and Christ is the head (origin, source of supply,) of the church, which is his body (including the head).
    The union of Christ and the church is not the union of a head with the rest of the body from the neck down, but rather it is the union of Christ (including his head) with all of the church so that we are all Christ’s body (including his head). We are thus “in Christ” and one with Him.
    The union of a husband and a wife is the same. It is not the union of the husband-head (just from above the neck)with the wife-body (from the neck down) but a total union of their total bodies (including their heads) to become one flesh.
    The husband can thus speak of his wife as his body (including his head), and one with him, just as the church is Christ’s body and one with Him.
    These concepts would indeed qualify as a profound mystery Eph 5:31,32.
    The husband would then be the head (origin, source of supply) of his wife, who is one flesh with him, which is easy to see in Adam and Eve (but not so easy to see for all other marriages- so I am still thinking more about that one).

  25. Craig,
    Nice summary. Translating of kephale as “head” in both instances fosters the idea that they must have the same meaning. But there is no reason they must. No matter how much comps would it.

  26. Craig said:
    “The husband would then be the head (origin, source of supply) of his wife, who is one flesh with him” I think that in the head-body metaphor in Ephesians 5:22, the meaning of “head” is more “source of supply” than it is “origin.” This comes from Ephesians 4, in which Christ as “head” is spoken of as the source of nourishment and growth.
    In the first-century Ephesian culture, the husband was definitely the source of supply and nourishment for his wife, who was dependent on him for provision. This state of affairs is largely obsolete in the Western world today. I’m not sure Paul would use the same metaphor today.

  27. Thanks Elaine and Kristen.
    Kristen, you said
    “I think that in the head-body metaphor in Ephesians 5:22, the meaning of “head” is more “source of supply” than it is “origin.” This comes from Ephesians 4, in which Christ as “head” is spoken of as the source of nourishment and growth.”
    I can see what you mean here. I am wondering though whether there is also some aspect where Paul may be thinking back to Adam and Eve in Eph 5:23 (see 5:31), just like he relates the term head in 1 Cor 11:5 back to what went on with Adam and Eve(1 Cor 11:3,8,9) I don’t really understand what I’m saying, and it may not be there at all, but I was just wondering.

  28. A very important distinction is to remember than in 1st Century Greek, the head was not considered the place where thinking or decision making occured. It was thought that all decision making or thinking came from the heart. (You can actually see this in other Paul verses where he refers to the heart in that way. Some translations now use “mind”)

    The “head” in the 1st century denoted the life source for the body as in breathing, eating, smelling, etc.

    This is confirmed by the writings of Aristotle and Hyppocrites. It was not until about a hundred years after Paul’s writings that some came to believe thinking came from the “head”. I believe this came first from a physician named Galen who proved that animals took their body movement cues from the head. But I would have to check the references on the name.

    The biggest mistake we have made is giving Western defintions to 1st Century words. We have done the same with Authenteo. We have even done it with the word “leader”.

  29. Thanks Lydia. This makes sense to me. This idea was behind my first question to Frank @#8. Thanks for filling in some helpful detail.

  30. Frank said:

    “I was mainly thinking in terms of the Greek anthropology current in Paul’s day, in which the head (kephale) had precedence over the other members of the human body because it was the seat of reason, and so gave direction and purpose to the other members.”

    I recall reading one quote from Plato where he said this sort of thing; but I have also read other quotes from Paul’s day that show an understanding of the heart as the seat of reason. The real issue is, how does Paul see it? And I think his letters make it pretty clear that he regarded the heart as the seat of reason.

  31. Great to see you back, Cheryl. I’ve been recouperating from surgery so haven’t been “out” much. You can catch up on me at the forums in the edification board… open for visitor eyes.

    As I get online more, I’ll stop by. :)

  32. Just thought of an illustration for “teach or authentein”.
    A man applies for a job for a bus company. At the interview he is told “I do not permit a diver to drink or smoke while on duty.”
    The context indicates he is being prohibited from drinking alcohol. It would be foolish to think that drinking water is being prohibited.
    Likewise the context of 1 Tim 2:12 indicates a prohibition of false teaching, not true Christian teaching.
    What do you think?

  33. Craig, I’m not sure that works unless a commonly understood meaning of “teach and authentein” used together, was like our commonly understood meaning of “drink and drive.” That is, that the 1st-century mind would automatically supply the word “false,” as our minds automatically supply the word “alchohol.”

  34. I thought that because the 1st-century mind always thought of “authentein” as negative, then that would quite likely influence the way they would have understood “teach” when associated with it. So if teach/authentein was prohibited, they would naturally think of a certain kind of teaching- not a good sort. So one word, even though a distinct word and activity from a second word, can influence the way we understand the second word. Is this not correct?

  35. You know, the phrase “to let learn in quietness and submission” was a phrase used for those who were to be students. So, it is possible that their might have been another phrase that was used also to tell students not to try teaching or ?? leading or something that was replaced with the word authentein. It is doubtful that authentein was ever used commonly in that way. This only points to a specific situation with a specific woman or group of women. Unfortunately, we are not privy to the real situation so we cannot do anything else but wonder a bit.

  36. Craig, I would think that associating the negative authentein and teaching negatively would be accurate, but it does seem a toss up. While a person is in a student’s position, they should try teaching anything because they are learning and need to receive a fuller instruction to be equipped enough. IMO all of those are good thoughts.

    The ONLY problems that arise are when some try to make this NOT about a woman or group of women learning, but a life prohibition. No such life prohibition has ever been given toward any group of believers anywhere in Scripture. And certainly when Christ came to set us free and give us all the full promise, it is not reasonable to think that suddenly God is going to bind up one part of the Body of Christ.

  37. Hi Kristen and TL. Thanks Kristen for expressing your hesitation but I am not sure I completely follow. So I thought I might try and clarify a bit and see if you still think it is off track.
    Comps often argue that Paul wouldn’t have used the word “teach” in 1 Tim 2:12 if he had false teaching in mind. Rev 2 and Titus 1 show that “teach” can refer to false teaching. I just thought an example from everyday English could be helpful in showing how context and another verb connected with “or” can influence the intended meaning. Another example along the same lines, but without the driving, would be
    “I do not permit you to drink or eat in this section of the museum.”
    “I do not permit you to drink or smoke at this party.”
    “Drink” has a meaning, but the type of drinking we think of is influenced by the context and the other verb it is connected with.
    This seems similar to me to a context of deception and its connection with authentein influencing what Paul had in mind by the word “teach”.

  38. Ok, that idea makes sense to me, Craig. But there doesn’t seem to be any way to prove that the original audience would have used the words “teach” and “authentein” together like that to mean something specific, unless we have some other examples of that kind of use in ancient Greek documents. I’d have to say it’s a good conjecture and may be true, but the evidence is inconclusive.

  39. “I thought that because the 1st-century mind always thought of “authentein” as negative, then that would quite likely influence the way they would have understood “teach” when associated with it. So if teach/authentein was prohibited, they would naturally think of a certain kind of teaching- not a good sort. ”

    A few hundred years later, Chrysostom wrote that a “husband should not authenteo his wife”.

    I have never understood the comp argument that teaching cannot be a false teaching that murders the soul. It fits the context of the epistle.

  40. Kristen, I don’t think that “teach’ and “authentein” had to necessarily commonly go together to mean something specific, like “drink” and “smoke” do. So you are probably correct that my example still doesn’t seem to get the idea across that I am trying to make. So I’ll try again.
    1 I do not permit you to learn or commit idolatory at the local mosque.
    2 I do not permit you to worship or have seances with those friends of yours who are involved in the occult.
    3 I do not permit you to teach or commit adultery like the temple prostitutes do.
    4 I do not permit you to teach or authentein a man while you are deceived like Eve.
    The negative context and the negative second verb influence the meaning of the first verb and make it reasonable to assume that the first verb has a negative meaning also. Example 1 involves learning Islaamic teachings, not biblical truth. Example 2 involves worshipping Satan, not God. Examples 3 and 4 involve error, not biblical truth.

  41. Ah, I see. That does make sense. To me, it makes sense to read it, “I do not allow a woman to teach in a way that takes over a man’s class.” And that at that time, because the women were still uneducated, the only ones teaching classes in Ephesus were men– which is why “teaching so as to authentein” was worded specifically in terms of men being “authentein”ed.

    For example, it might have been possible for someone to “teach and authentein” Jesus in his sessions with his disciples, by shouldering in and taking over as rabbi, expecting Jesus to sit down and listen.

    Does that make sense?

  42. I would love to know, as we all would, exactly what was going on in Ephesus – what Paul meant by authentein and what he was prohibiting.
    Your proposal seems possible to me, but I do not know enough about the Ephesian situation to know if they had “classes” for instruction outside of the normal church gatherings in which only men had been authorized to teach. Was Ephesus different to Rome (Rom 16) and Corinth (1 Cor 11-14) where it would be difficult to imagine there were no women teachers? What about Priscilla?
    At this stage I feel comfortable with the idea that authentein was something that was bad for either a woman or a man to do, and that a particular woman (or perhaps women) was combining teaching with whatever authentein is, and doing this from a deceived position.
    If you are looking for alternatives to the particular woman view that Cheryl teaches
    1 If it was some sort of domineering behaviour, I can imagine that some women could do this just toward the men.
    2 If it had some sort of sexual meaning I can imagine that some women could do this just toward the men.
    3 If it was “shouldering in and taking over a man’s class”, I need to think some more about that one, and “learn in quietness and full submission” :) before I can properly envisage that as what Paul might be saying.
    Whatever the behaviour was, it seems to be contrasted with learning in quietness and full submission.
    Thanks again Kristen for the interaction.

  43. Hi Lydia. Thanks for your comment regarding Chrysostom and authentein. This is very useful information that I have heard on blogs several times. A reference to verify this would be helpful. Did you read it in a book, or do you know where this information comes from? Thanks.
    And yes, the idea that a woman (or some women) was teaching from a position of deception and thus spiritually murdering a man seems also a possibility. But if there was more than one woman involved we would still have to assume that for some reason, the women’s teaching was focused only on the men. Any ideas?

  44. Craig, Ephesus certainly was a very different town from either Rome or Corinth. Picture Rome as kind of like New York, Corinth as Las Vegas– and Ephesus more like Paducah, Kentucky.

    From what I understand, Rome was the center of civilization in that part of the world, very cosmopolitan, and the upper-class women in Rome had recently sought and won a number of concessions from the Emperor granting them more education and greater freedoms. Corinth was a city containing a large number of different cultural groups, some rich but mostly poor, but with a large variety of social customs all vying with one another– it was the “sin city” of its day. Ephesus was further off the beaten track and very backwards comparatively, with the vast majority of women still held to the ancient Greek restrictions of complete seclusion within their homes and no formal education. Ephesus was most known for its temple to Artemis, who was actually a much older pagan goddess who had been conflated with the Greek diety. Artemis worship was the only place where women could have any power, as she was served mostly by female priestesses.

    So whereas at Rome there were a number of wealthy, educated women among the converts, who quickly rose to positions of leadership (and were commended by Paul for doing so), and at Corinth there were various cultural groups all bringing something different to the table (which was reflected in the practice of “when you come together, each one has a psalm, a prophecy, a teaching,” and a need for the establishment of order so that everyone could hear and be edified), in Ephesus there would have been many uneducated women, accustomed to seclusion except when in worship settings, when they would expect to be able to take over. It would not be surprising to me if under the circumstances, men were the only ones doing the teaching in the main meetings (it was in those meetings that I pictured the women as “shouldering in on the class”), and that one or more groups of false teachers would challenge them– including, probably, a group of women wanting to worship in a similar way that they had worshiped Artemis.

    Hope this explains better where I’m coming from.

  45. TL,
    I just now read your post about recouperating from surgery. I pray that the Lord will help you heal quickly.

    Craig,
    You said:

    A man applies for a job for a bus company. At the interview he is told “I do not permit a diver to drink or smoke while on duty.”
    The context indicates he is being prohibited from drinking alcohol. It would be foolish to think that drinking water is being prohibited.
    Likewise the context of 1 Tim 2:12 indicates a prohibition of false teaching, not true Christian teaching.
    What do you think?

    Excellent analogy to show that context is very important to understand the meaning!

  46. I should add that “teach and authentein” would go together with the context of deception and the context of making sure that she receives instruction and that she will be saved..”if”. It also goes together with the context of chapter one where those teaching error were to be stopped. There is no context in 1 Timothy that mandates the stopping of true teaching.

  47. Kristen,
    You said:

    by shouldering in and taking over as rabbi, expecting Jesus to sit down and listen

    It is my understanding that in Christianity there is to be no hierarchy among the brethren so that if a person had something to give out as God’s gift, the one who had been sharing should be willing to submit to God’s gifts among the brethren.

    1 Corinthians 14:30 (NASB95)
    30 But if a revelation is made to another who is seated, the first one must keep silent.

    When I teach the Bible to my Bible study group, I stand in the position of teacher, but I willingly accept and listen to other people’s wisdom. My own pastor sits in my Bible study classes and he told us last week that he has learned a lot from me. Yet we all listen to his wisdom when he has something to share that I may have missed. It isn’t about one person being more important than another so that only one person can speak. We are commanded to submit “one to another”. The way that I see this working out is not that a person demands that other people listen to him (and thus acting as a ruler over others) but that those who are in the body willingly submit to learn from others. The injunction is never to take rulership over others but to submit to others. In this way there is never a need to “shouldering in and taking over” while the person may take leadership in a respectful way as the one leading takes a respectful place of submission to also receive God’s gifts through another.

  48. I personally do not believe that the early church had a “male only” rule of teaching. If this was a rule instituted by Jesus or His apostles, it would have to be written and explained. Why would there be no rule for thousands of years until Jesus came and brought liberation but then for some people (i.e. women) new rules brought them greater restriction? It just doesn’t make sense.

    The way that I have come to see things regarding God’s rules is that God is very interested in us understanding His rules so that we will obey Him and stay away from sin. Because of this He has given His rules many times and in different ways so that we can be clear about what He forbids. No universal prohibition is ever treated in the way that the so-called law against women teaching men. http://strivetoenter.com/wim/2006/11/29/does-god-have-one-unique-law-part-one/

  49. Hi Kristen. Thanks for the interesting history. I am just thinking aloud and trying to grasp what you are saying.
    You said,
    “To me, it makes sense to read it, “I do not allow a woman to teach in a way that takes over a man’s class.”
    You also said
    “men were the only ones doing the teaching in the main meetings (it was in those meetings that I pictured the women as “shouldering in on the class”)”
    I am probably misunderstanding you because it seems like you are saying that they understood church as a class belonging to a man. We often see church that way today, with one man being the official teacher, being in authority, and others being in a position of learners. With this view of church, if someone wanted to “shoulder in and take over” that position, they could be described as “authenteining” a man. But I don’t think that church belongs to one man and so how could it be seen to be a man’s class that the woman is taking over? How could it therefore be “authenteining a man”? Sorry, still confused.

  50. Kristen. You said,
    “For example, it might have been possible for someone to “teach and authentein” Jesus in his sessions with his disciples, by shouldering in and taking over as rabbi, expecting Jesus to sit down and listen.”
    I think I can understand what you mean here. But can we consider a man in a church to be like Jesus (or any Rabbi) to his disciples?

  51. ”I personally do not believe that the early church had a “male only” rule of teaching.”

    I would not think so according to everything that has been written in the NT. However, it could be that in Ephesus especially, the local Jews TENDED toward mainly males for teachers. One would think this because of the Rabbinical writings of the times. Thus, those women mentioned in 1 Timothy would likely be learning from male teachers. That is one possibility.

    ”I am probably misunderstanding you because it seems like you are saying that they understood church as a class belonging to a man.”

    Craig, probably not. Teaching did not only happen in what would be considered church gatherings. Even though we understand that wherever two or three gather, there is the church, it is meant as there is the Body of Christ and the presence of God. We gather for many things including meals, social stuff, fellowshipping, learning and the gathering for ministry. This is something I’ve been trying to differentiate in Bible Study groups lately. People think that because we are the church then everyone ought to be able to share without any boundaries. But teaching requires certain boundaries in orderliness that are different than the local gatherings. Even when Jesus taught in the temple areas for teaching, it was different in order than when they gathered on the Sabbath.

  52. “I should add that “teach and authentein” would go together with the context of deception and the context of making sure that she receives instruction and that she will be saved..”if”. It also goes together with the context of chapter one where those teaching error were to be stopped. There is no context in 1 Timothy that mandates the stopping of true teaching.”

    That is my take also. If one reads in context, as a letter the way it was written, it is difficult NOT to come to this conclusion.

  53. “Hi Lydia. Thanks for your comment regarding Chrysostom and authentein. This is very useful information that I have heard on blogs several times. A reference to verify this would be helpful. Did you read it in a book, or do you know where this information comes from? Thanks.”

    It is used that way in his Homily 10 on Colossians.

  54. TL. You said,
    “But teaching requires certain boundaries in orderliness that are different than the local gatherings. Even when Jesus taught in the temple areas for teaching, it was different in order than when they gathered on the Sabbath.”
    You seem here to be linking the teaching mentioned to groups other than the main church meeting. Do you mean by “local gatherings” what Kristen means below by “main church meeting?
    Kristen. You said
    “men were the only ones doing the teaching in the main meetings (it was in those meetings that I pictured the women as “shouldering in on the class”)
    You seem here to be linking the teaching mentioned to the main church meeting.
    Am I correct in thinking you both differ from each other on this point? I am just trying to clarify what each of you is saying. Thanks.

  55. I must say that I still find Cheryl’s view of this passage the most appealing, but in looking at whether any other views are plausible (just in case “a woman” is generic), does anyone know why the view of authentein with the sexual connotatation (from Catherine Kroeger?) seems to be discussed less than authentien as self assumed authority (Philip Payne?)? To me, the “sexy” view seems to explain the “a man” better than the “assume authority” view. Has the research discounted the sexy view or something?

  56. Thanks Lydia for finding where Chrysostom’s quote is from.

  57. “Am I correct in thinking you both differ from each other on this point? I am just trying to clarify what each of you is saying. Thanks.”

    Yes, I guess so. I’m speaking from my own experience, which I think can be applied for small gatherings for teaching. When I teach in small gatherings there is a different kind of orderliness required than when I teach/preach in larger groups. It is likely that Jesus elicited more the same response no matter where he taught. But in regular teaching meetings for teaching only one wants to encourage lots of questions. Though the student needs still to learn in an attitude of quietness and a yielded heart to learn, questions must be asked. You can see this in some of the gatherings with Jesus where the disciples asked lots of questions, but politely and respectfully.

    However, in bigger meetings such questions were discouraged as people were to allow the Holy Spirit to move among them and people needed more often to just listen and contemplate as each person shared what they had and then sat down. That doesn’t mean no questions were ever asked but likely few as that would disturb the anointing of the Holy Spirit flowing from the teachers, prophets, apostles and others. Unfortunately, our meetings are so different than the early church, we have difficulty grasping these differences.

  58. The idea that the attitude that Paul is forbidding is a woman shouldering in and trying to take over the teaching I think can apply to both smaller teaching only meetings and the larger body ministry meetings where teachings took on different forms.

  59. TL,
    Are you saying that a man is allowed to “shoulder in” and “take over a meeting” while a woman is not allowed to do this?

  60. LOL Cheryl. You know I’m not. Didn’t think it sounded like that.

    See, I’m thinking that Timothy is dealing with a specific woman or group of women. And it is to that specific woman that Paul is saying she should be allowed to LEARN and not permitted to “shoulder in” and take over the meetings as she may have been doing, which Timothy might have found intolerable.

    Yes, I recollect that you believe it is talking about a wife to a husband, which fits also. I keep looking at both of them as valid. Shrug! :)

  61. TL,
    I didn’t think you meant that, but for some reason your comment confused me. Maybe it is just a confusing Monday for me. 😉

    I hesitate to say that Paul is forbidding a particular woman from taking over a meeting since both “a woman” and “a man” are either generic or they are both particular with an anaphoric reference. It seems to me that if Paul was talking about the meeting of the church there would be women there too and a woman forbidden from taking over meetings would be teaching both men and women, not just males.

    This is the way I reason it. If a particular woman was not allowed to teach in the church meetings, I think Paul would have said that he isn’t allowing “a woman” to teach or authentein the church, i.e. she isn’t allowed to authentein men and women. The problem always seems to crop up because it is only “a man” that “a woman” is forbidden to teach. What I see from this is that she isn’t doing something public but on the side, secretly and in private.

    I have studied this issue extensively since about 2004 and even though I am open to learn new things, I haven’t been convinced that Paul is forbidding public teaching for “a woman”. If it was public teaching it would fit into chapter 1 where Paul tells Timothy to stop the teachers who are teaching error. It seems very reasonable to me that the only reason that “a woman” is brought up in chapter 2 and her teaching is specifically to be silenced is because in her case she is not doing the same thing publicly. She is unique and her case is sticky (especially if I am correct that the man she is teaching is her husband).

    For me, I just see so many holes that have no answers if I take the prohibition to be the stopping of public teaching. I haven’t heard a good explanation for why only men would be in the meetings (except for her of course) or why one half (a woman) could possibly be specific while the other half (a man) could be general.

    I am fully convinced of my view because of verse 15 where the conclusion to the prohibition brings a promise about her future salvation. This only makes sense to me if it is indeed about a singular woman (she). I also am fully convinced that too many people try to understand the passage by ignoring the conclusion of the prohibition in verse 15. I believe that verse 12 cannot be understood without first making full sense of verse 15 and understanding why verse 15 is there in the passage.

    I do encourage anyone to work hard to convince me that public meetings can be brought into verse 12. I may be very skeptical and a stickler for the grammar, but I do love truth so that if I see a clear presentation and a good argument, I will appreciate it and allow myself to be convinced.

  62. I should add that I don’t believe that Paul is allowing “a woman” to teach in the church and just forbidding her from teaching “a man”. That prohibition would come under chapter 1 where false teachers are forbidden to teach their errors. I am just convinced that what she is doing is not public and I am convinced that she thinks she has the truth but she is not saved. I am also quite sure that her husband has a prominent place in the assembly and he may very well be one of the elders and it may be that he has repeated what his wife said to others and this is how the “problem” became known. This part is conjecture of mine, but I think it is reasonable considering it appears to be a private matter and not a public situation. If it was public, there would be no reason to point her out among all the other false teachers. All of them were to have their mouths zipped. 😉

  63. …and if my observations, conclusions or conjectures have holes in them, I welcome correction. Anyone reading my blog has the right to point out my errors or inconsistencies in an attempt to correct any errors that I may unwittingly have accepted as truth.

    Thoughts? I welcome all of your thoughts, corrections, advice and dialog.

  64. “I am just convinced that what she is doing is not public and I am convinced that she thinks she has the truth but she is not saved. “

    Very possible. I’ve had that problem in Bible Study classes by both a woman and a man. Both of them I asked to learn and study more because what they were trying to claim as truth was off kilter. In the man’s case, I’m not sure he was even a true believer. But the point was they were getting pushy trying to claim their ideas were truth from the Bible but they really didn’t know the Bible on those subjects. These days and maybe always, there are people who think they can dispute teachers openly and get into debates publicly (and privately) claiming they have the truth, yet they are not truly studied on the subject.

    “I am also quite sure that her husband has a prominent place in the assembly and he may very well be one of the elders and it may be that he has repeated what his wife said to others and this is how the “problem” became known. This part is conjecture of mine, but I think it is reasonable considering it appears to be a private matter and not a public situation. “

    This is very possible.

    “If it was public, there would be no reason to point her out among all the other false teachers. All of them were to have their mouths zipped. ;)”

    Well, except for the conclusion that she may have been deceived and was just passing on the deception. Admonishing her to learn and not to forcefully promote her incorrect teaching, would mercifully allow her to learn without as much public shame.

  65. “…and if my observations, conclusions or conjectures have holes in them, I welcome correction. Anyone reading my blog has the right to point out my errors or inconsistencies in an attempt to correct any errors that I may unwittingly have accepted as truth.”

    I’ve always known that, and accept the same myself. But I’m not really saying that you are wrong. I’m just seeing another possibility that could apply as well. IMO both “work” as good admonitions for improving Christian character and behavior. I cannot see a clear – only one approach to it.

    :)

  66. Craig, I’m not quite sure in what context I would view what I have called “shouldering in on the class,” because I don’t know enough about what church gatherings looked like in Ephesus, and whether they were similar to what they looked like in Corinth (which as far as I can see is the only church we are given a picture of what the meetings looked like, in Chapter 14). But I do think it’s possible for women thinking it’s more proper to do things the way they are used to seeing them done in Artemis’ temple, “shouldering in” to impose themselves in some way.
    Cheryl, I like your view; I really do. I just wish there were some way for me to get around what seems to me to be a real fact about this passage: that the context of this section is Paul talking about how groups of people conduct themselves in the church. For him to suddenly switch over to talking about one particular woman, with absolutely no transitionary words to make this clear, is just hard for me to swallow. I still admit it as a possibility– but when I have tried to present this view to others who are not already inclined to be egal, they have seen it as evidence that I want to read this sudden introduction of one woman into the text, just to bring about an egal interpretation. And I’m talking about scholarly people here, not just ones who have a knee-jerk reaction against egal interpretations in general.
    In other words, introducing a single, unnamed woman here is causing more skepticism directed at egalitarianism, not less. Particularly when one interprets “she” as being “Eve representing all womankind,” in which case the use of the present tense is no longer so problematic.

    So I guess I’d have to say, in order to make your reading more convincing, you’ll need to do some explanation of why Paul would switch the subject matter in the middle of the passage with no transitions and no warning. Perhaps this will help you strengthen your reading. I hope so. I would like to believe it.

  67. Another thought: Perhaps the women in question, being used to seeing women leading in the temple of Artemis, were only “shouldering in” when it was a man doing the teaching in the Ephesus church. Perhaps when a woman was teaching in the church, they were letting her teach without resistance. Perhaps this particular situation is what Paul was addressing. It seems plausible.

  68. “In other words, introducing a single, unnamed woman here is causing more skepticism directed at egalitarianism, not less. Particularly when one interprets “she” as being “Eve representing all womankind,” in which case the use of the present tense is no longer so problematic.”

    You lost me a little here. You are saying that some or many scholars cannot agree that “A” woman means a singular woman. Yes, I’m aware of that, yet I have trouble really thinking otherwise because of the deliberate switch from plural to singular. But, I yield some on that by including, “or a group of women”. The deliberate switch just seems so glaring to me.

    As for Eve representing all womankind, I don’t think that makes sense because then when Paul says “nevertheless SHE will be saved”, it cannot be referring to Eve representing all womankind. Eve’s destiny had already been determined long ago. It seems it has to refer to A single woman and the “they” to her husband, or to a group of women. But I prefer the single woman myself.

  69. #65 TL,
    You said:

    Well, except for the conclusion that she may have been deceived and was just passing on the deception. Admonishing her to learn and not to forcefully promote her incorrect teaching, would mercifully allow her to learn without as much public shame.

    I too believe that she was deceived, but I also believe the false teachers that were silenced in 1 Timothy 1:7 were also deceived and not deliberate deceivers:

    1 Timothy 1:7 (NASB95)
    7wanting 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.

    I believe that these false teachers who do not understand what they are saying are completely different from the deceivers from 1 Timothy 1:19-20

    1 Timothy 1:19–20 (NASB95)
    19keeping faith and a good conscience, which some have rejected and suffered shipwreck in regard to their faith.
    20Among these are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have handed over to Satan, so that they will be taught not to blaspheme.

    Here we can see that the deceivers:
    1. have rejected a good conscience (in other words they deliberately are lying and have no good conscience as one would have who had been deceived).
    2. have blasphemed (and blasphemy is a deliberate action)
    3. have been turned over to Satan (they are not turned over to teachers to be corrected because they are deliberate deceivers who do not learn through the teaching of the truth. Rather they are turned over to Satan to receive punishment in the hopes that they will see the light and repent from their sin).

    Those who are teaching error because they have been deceived and really believe what they are teaching, even though they are ignorant about what they profess to be true, are to be treated with instruction and mercy. I believe that the woman from 1 Timothy 1:12 is in the category of all the other false deceived teachers rather than the category of the deceived since Paul is confident that with proper instruction she can learn the truth and receive salvation.

  70. #66 TL,
    You said:

    But I’m not really saying that you are wrong. I’m just seeing another possibility that could apply as well. IMO both “work” as good admonitions for improving Christian character and behavior. I cannot see a clear – only one approach to it.

    I can understand that you see other options. I guess this is where we differ because I see too many holes in the other way to be an option. Here are the holes that I see that I cannot see a resolution to:

    1. It would be inconsistent and thus illogical to make “a woman” particular and “a man” as the church.
    2. It would not make sense to disallow a deceived woman to teach the men in the congregation but say nothing about the women. If her teaching was public, then the prohibition needs to be generic. It would make far more sense if Paul would have left out “a man” and just state that he forbids “a woman” from teaching (implication in the passage is that the teaching is that of deception). For what purpose does singling out men in the congregation rather than the entire congregation?
    3. If the woman was deceived just as all the false teachers in 1 Timothy 1:7, and teaching publicly like all of the false teachers, then why single her out from the others?

    These are the things that bother me about having a consistent view and another option.

  71. #67 Kristen,
    You said:

    Cheryl, I like your view; I really do. I just wish there were some way for me to get around what seems to me to be a real fact about this passage: that the context of this section is Paul talking about how groups of people conduct themselves in the church. For him to suddenly switch over to talking about one particular woman, with absolutely no transitionary words to make this clear, is just hard for me to swallow.

    Excellent challenge Kristen! There are transitionary words that document the change. First of all is a change from a desire to a command. A critical and exegetical commentary on the Pastoral Epistles (pg 452) details the change to the imperative:

    A new topic, which extends through to v. 15, is introduced with asyndeton (cf. BD 459–63) and a switch to the third-person imperative.

    The second piece of grammar change is from plural to the singular. This is exceptionally awkward if keeping within the general instructions that Paul has just given. The key problem in seeing verses 11-15 as dealing with women in general is verse 15 which cannot be removed from verses 11 & 12. Verse 15 cannot be generic or the verse becomes nonsensical. Men have tried extremely hard to force verse 15 to be women in general saying that the singular and plural refer both to generic women, but this is not only unprecedented but nonsensical and it brings in an idea of women’s salvation through child bearing that is completely outside the scope of the rest of the Scriptures. There is no other way to take verse 15 that is not problematic is to take the singular and the plural just as they are written. Thus Paul changes the subject in verse 11 to the issue of a problem woman and he ends the discussion with verse 15 – the expected good outcome of her salvation.

    I believe that Paul was inspired by God to write this section and the grammar is not a mistake. I also believe that some things that Paul has written are very hard to understand outside of the context of an insider. There is no doubt in my mind that Timothy knew exactly what Paul was talking about. Timothy also knew the people involved, the problems and I believe that Paul was writing in response to discussions that he had with Timothy either in writing or in person.

    If one doesn’t believe as I do about the inspired grammar then one will come to this passage confused, but not even knowing it until verse 15. Verse 15 is the clincher. The singular and the plural cannot be forced to mean the same thing, nor can the salvation of all women be forced to be dependent on having children nor on the actions of others (they). If you concentrate on verse 15, I believe that the rest will all fall into place. Figure out verse 15 and there will be no question that verse 12 is not a prohibition of all women from teaching any or all men.

    I still admit it as a possibility– but when I have tried to present this view to others who are not already inclined to be egal, they have seen it as evidence that I want to read this sudden introduction of one woman into the text, just to bring about an egal interpretation.

    This is why verse 15 is so important. This verse dictates who is being referenced in verses 11 & 12. The complementarian argument falls apart in verse 15 with a confusing conclusion. One is left scratching their head. The fact is that we are forced to conclude that the singular and plural are not the same because Paul differentiates them in verse 15, so we have to go back and take the beginning of what Paul says in verse 11 and conclude that his change in grammar from plural to singular is intentional and not a mistake. It is verse 15 that forces us to this conclusion and it changes everything. If a person questions me on verses 11 & 12 and makes fun of me because I take the grammar as anaphoric, I let them know that verse 15 requires me to take it this way, as well as verse 14. I read back into verses 11 & 12 the specific singular because I want to respect God’s word and I have to make Paul a nonsensical idiot who is deliberating deceiving and tricking everyone when he uses singular and plural in verse 15 to mean the same thing. It is God’s Word that causes me to respect the grammar.

    I am not afraid of people making fun of me. I just respectfully as them to make sense of verse 15 and then I ask them how child bearing relates to verses 11 & 12 and how salvation relates to child bearing and why Paul would confuse the grammar by doing what no other Scripture passage has ever done – and that is to make a singular to be the same thing as plural in the same sentence. No one has been able to unravel this in a way that keeps the respect of Scripture to say what it means and means what it says.

    And I’m talking about scholarly people here, not just ones who have a knee-jerk reaction against egal interpretations in general. In other words, introducing a single, unnamed woman here is causing more skepticism directed at egalitarianism, not less.

    This doesn’t phase me at all because I want truth more than anything and I reject a lot of what egalitarians say because it comes out as contrived toward a point of view rather than trying to understand what Scripture says. I want consistency and I want truth and if an argument that an egalitarian holds is full of holes, I will reject it. It doesn’t concern me at all that the person is an egalitarian. I want truth and not a system of thought.

    Some egalitarians are willing to swallow anything another egalitarian writes just because it gives a reason no matter how weak. I just cannot do that. I really want to know what God’s word means and if I stop searching because I have accepted a weak argument, I won’t press forward to know what God wants me to know. When there is a solid argument, there will be no more contradictions. Then I can stop searching for truth unless I am convinced that there is a hole in my argument that I have not seen. I reason this way because truth does not contradict itself. When I can see contradiction and holes in the argument, I won’t accept it no matter how many doctorate degrees a person has. Truth is not depend on doctorate degrees. Truth is dependent on God’s Word and no contradiction.

    Particularly when one interprets “she” as being “Eve representing all womankind,” in which case the use of the present tense is no longer so problematic.

    But it is very problematic. How do you have a dead woman representing all womankind? And if she did represent all womankind why is womankind then represented as “they” rather than continue the representation as “she”? And why would Eve be a representative of all women regarding salvation? How does that work? It makes no sense to me regarding “she” and “they” and makes even less sense regarding bearing children. It is confusing, jumbled and not proper grammar.

    So I guess I’d have to say, in order to make your reading more convincing, you’ll need to do some explanation of why Paul would switch the subject matter in the middle of the passage with no transitions and no warning. Perhaps this will help you strengthen your reading. I hope so. I would like to believe it.

    Paul was writing to Timothy and not directly to us. Paul did not switch writing “in the middle of a passage with no transitions and no warning”. Paul changed grammar and he changed the intention using the imperative. I have no doubt at all that Timothy was expecting Paul to give him advice on how to handle this one problem person. Timothy would have known exactly what Paul meant and the very rare word that Paul used would have instantly told Timothy what Paul’s intention was. Timothy knew. Timothy was not confused. I believe that the only ones who are confused are those who ignore the grammar change and ignore the change to imperative and who ignore verse 15 as the conclusion with both the singular and plural used together as being different. I think that it is our tradition that says that women are somehow inferior that allows us to accept the idea that all women cannot teach with the authority of God’s Word because all women are not as good spiritually as men. I think that we have accepted the thought that we need men’s teaching but women’s teaching is optional. That is not true. The eye cannot say to the hand “I have no need of you”. Women’s teaching is very much needed by men. We are all needed and when we ignore what God has given we all hurt. We have been hurting for a very long time by the false interpretion of 1 Timothy 2:11-15. When we get it right, we will no longer be prejudiced towards women.

  72. Kristen,
    You said:

    Perhaps the women in question, being used to seeing women leading in the temple of Artemis, were only “shouldering in” when it was a man doing the teaching in the Ephesus church. Perhaps when a woman was teaching in the church, they were letting her teach without resistance. Perhaps this particular situation is what Paul was addressing. It seems plausible.

    The problem with this is that Paul’s words are not about men teaching but about who she teaches. How are you going to get a woman “shouldering in” to the congregation when a man teaches and find her only teaching men? Where are the other women that would be there? There is a hole in the argument.

  73. Boy, have I gotten wordy. I have been so busy lately as my husband and myself are the only ones in the ministry now as our ministry partners quit due to health issues. But when you get me started, I am like a wind up toy who just goes and goes….

  74. “Those who are teaching error because they have been deceived and really believe what they are teaching, even though they are ignorant about what they profess to be true, are to be treated with instruction and mercy. I believe that the woman from 1 Timothy 1:12 is in the category of all the other false deceived teachers rather than the category of the deceived since Paul is confident that with proper instruction she can learn the truth and receive salvation.”

    That’s my conclusion also.

    “I believe that Paul was inspired by God to write this section and the grammar is not a mistake. I also believe that some things that Paul has written are very hard to understand outside of the context of an insider. There is no doubt in my mind that Timothy knew exactly what Paul was talking about. Timothy also knew the people involved, the problems and I believe that Paul was writing in response to discussions that he had with Timothy either in writing or in person.”

    My conclusion as well.

    “1. It would be inconsistent and thus illogical to make “a woman” particular and “a man” as the church.”

    Agreed. Thus your concept that it must be between a wife and her husband, does settle that. Yet, ‘the church’ is also the whole body whether gathered in a teaching setting, or in an assembly setting. And it seems to me that A woman could become a continual problem if she had a habit of interrupting the teacher or leader or preacher with her concepts as if only she were correct. ???

    “For what purpose does singling out men in the congregation rather than the entire congregation?”

    Maybe if a particular woman was harassing a particular leader, teacher. It doesn’t say a woman not teach men, but a woman not teach a man. So to me both seem pointed to a specific.

    “If the woman was deceived just as all the false teachers in 1 Timothy 1:7, and teaching publicly like all of the false teachers, then why single her out from the others?”

    Perhaps, she was charismatically charming and forceful and tended to pick on a certain man or leader or teacher. Shrug!! Perhaps, it was Timothy she was picking on and thus why she needed to be addressed in a letter to be read publicly, but not named so those not privy would not take her name down in history. Thus, giving her a chance to reform and learn.

  75. TL,
    I should have said that the woman is not one of the deceivers. It was a mistyping.

    Yet, ‘the church’ is also the whole body whether gathered in a teaching setting, or in an assembly setting. And it seems to me that A woman could become a continual problem if she had a habit of interrupting the teacher or leader or preacher with her concepts as if only she were correct. ???

    I suppose this could happen, but then how would one relate this kind of problem? Would one say that the woman is forbidden to teach a man? I don’t think that her interrupting would qualify as teaching only him. I think that Paul would cut to the chase and say that the woman (whom everyone would know since it was done publicly) should not be interrupting. The issue of not teaching “a man” seems out of place since it would be interruption that would be the issue and her teaching would be heard by all not just by a man.

    Maybe if a particular woman was harassing a particular leader, teacher. It doesn’t say a woman not teach men, but a woman not teach a man. So to me both seem pointed to a specific.

    This certainly could be the case, but then the problem is not teaching a man but harassing a leader. Is the issue really public between a specific woman and a specific leader? Does she not interrupt any other men? And why are her interruptions called teaching? And if she was teaching this one leader, then would not her public speaking qualify as teaching others too? If not, why not?

    Perhaps, she was charismatically charming and forceful and tended to pick on a certain man or leader or teacher. Shrug!! Perhaps, it was Timothy she was picking on and thus why she needed to be addressed in a letter to be read publicly, but not named so those not privy would not take her name down in history. Thus, giving her a chance to reform and learn.

    I can see that you are really thinking this through and trying to see all angles and that is good. I also agree that Paul is not giving her name so that when she gets saved, she is not forever known as the woman who could not teach. But it seems improbable that picking on a man would be called teaching him and the prohibition would be teaching only “a man” rather than harassing one person and teaching lots of people false doctrine. Why do you think that Paul worded it the way he did if it was actually harassment? Why was Paul not concerned about what the whole congregation would hear from her but only concerned about her teaching “a man”? Is the man that she was harassing publicly necessary for her to be saved? If not, who are the “they” in “she” will be saved….if “they”…. What is the harassed leaders part that is absolutely necessary in getting her saved? Was he part of the problem? If so then why would Paul not have given instructions for the problem elder who allowed a woman to harass him and thus publicly teach error to only him?

    While I can really appreciate your thought process, I find the scenario unconvincing as it has holes and more questions than answers. It seems to me that teaching only one person gives a far more plausible weight to private teaching rather than public. I think your main problem will be to explain how one person can be teaching error publicly but in essence be only teaching one person rather than all. If a leader is influenced, why is there no concern about what she is doing to the entire congregation?

    Think this one through and see if you can plug up the holes. If not, think the issue through again about private teaching between one person and the other. Does this line up with what Paul is prohibiting? Does a private situation line up with the assurance of her salvation in verse 15 that goes along with what they are to do together to assure her salvation?

  76. Interesting discussion! I’ll need to reread some of the comments to digest it all, but I just thought I would throw some more thoughts into the mix. It’s late here so I’ll just put them out there and see if there are any nibbles while I am asleep. (I’ll put on my flame proof suit before I read any responses, because they are, like most of my comments, just off the top of my head and could have “holes” everywhere! :) )
    1 We seem to be assuming in some of our comments that the teaching not permitted is just to “a man”. I am not sure that this is certain is it? Isn’t it also possible from the grammar that the teaching could be to everyone and this teaching is combined with “authentein a man”. The word order in my interlinear says “but a woman to teach I do not allow, nor to authentein a man.”
    2 If “authentein” had a sexual meaning, imagine there was a particular woman from a background as an Artemis Temple Priestess. Could she have been teaching intimacy with God through intimacy with her? She would be deceived, and holding out the “forbidden fruit” to the Adam’s of the congregation. It would be very important if she is to be saved, for the men to hold fast to their Christian faith and godliness and not be like Adam and fall when offered the “fruit”. I think the language Paul uses of “a man” in v12 could involve one or many men ( because presumably she would only have one man at a time- but I am speaking from total ignorance of the temple practices of the time!) The “they” in v15 could be the woman and one man, the woman and many men, or just the men.

  77. ” I think your main problem will be to explain how one person can be teaching error publicly but in essence be only teaching one person rather than all.”

    Good point. This is where the hierarchical view fails as well. It’s the A woman toward A man, that was a deliberate switch, that is still the clincher. And I agree that if we accept the other meaning of those two words, which is wife toward husband, the problem is solved.

    It’s interesting to me that the very first time I came across this section uninfluenced by church beliefs I came to that conclusion easily. The problem at that time became the “have authority over”, which we have since learned is not the real meaning of authentein. If it were to ‘have authority over’, it would be the only place in Scripture where there was an implication that husbands have authority over their wives. This may be why gender hierarchalists want to keep that meaning even though it has been so thoroughly researched as meaning otherwise. If we use its actual meaning of the time, it comes across quite differently having forceful coercive and possibly even sexual connotations. This fits with the problems of the Temple ‘prostitutes’. One of those coming to know Jesus would have a real mixed up idea of spirituality.

    The reason I don’t think it’s about public gatherings only is because of

    “1 Tim. 3:15 but if I am delayed, I write so that you may know how you ought to conduct yourself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth. “

    This is not speaking of actions during the church gathering together but about the daily activity of all the body of Christ at all times. We are the house of God. As such, it would include everything not only gathering together for ministry.

    Well, I need to digest this after breakfast. :)

  78. Just thought I would clarify my point number 1 in #77 in case it was a bit unclear. Many of the comments above to argue against certain views assume that the “a man” refers to both the “teach” and the “authentein” in v12. We often read it as “I do not permit a woman to teach a man or to authentein a man”. If “a man” only refers to “authentein” and not to “teach” then this would alter the validity of many of the above comments. Paul would be restricting the false teaching of the deceived woman generally, not just teaching to a man. But he would be be prohibiting authentein specifically of the woman to a man.
    So therefore, we have to work out why authentein only relates to a man. We don’t necessarily have to figure out why Paul may be only restricting a woman’s teaching when it is to a man, because he may not be. We might be misreading him.

  79. Thanks very much Cheryl for the link to Chrysostom’s quote.

  80. As an example of what I am saying/asking. @#73 Cheryl quotes a suggestion from Kirsten and then sees a problem with it.

    Kristen,?You said:
    “Perhaps the women in question, being used to seeing women leading in the temple of Artemis, were only “shouldering in” when it was a man doing the teaching in the Ephesus church. Perhaps when a woman was teaching in the church, they were letting her teach without resistance. Perhaps this particular situation is what Paul was addressing. It seems plausible.”
    The problem with this is that Paul’s words are not about men teaching but about who she teaches. How are you going to get a woman “shouldering in” to the congregation when a man teaches and find her only teaching men? Where are the other women that would be there? There is a hole in the argument.

    The problem doesn’t exist if “a man” only refers to “authentein” and not to “teach” as far as I can tell. So Kristen’s suggestion may not be ruled out by this objection, if we are looking outside of the wife/husband private scenario possibilities. I still think it suffers at verse 15 though- but no more than any comp view I have heard.
    BTW One of the comp staff at my church also argued with me that “she” in v15 was Eve representing all women- a bit the same as Adam representing all mankind in Rom 5. I think Cheryl’s view makes more sense than this of v15. I was also thinking, if comps take this line- that women sinned “in Eve”, I wonder what happens to their Federal headship of Adam?? I didn’t think to ask this at the time.

  81. #77 Craig,
    This comment of yours had a lot of different thoughts. It is a good point you brought up about whether the object of “a man” would modify just authentein or also “to teach”. For the answer to that I checked out my trusty Cascadia Syntax Graphs to map out the object to see if it is connected also to teach. Here is what I found:

    1 Timothy 2:12 cascadia syntax on Women in Ministry by Cheryl Schatz

  82. To interpret the graph above, there is only one main object function in the sentence and both verbal clauses within the sentence point to the object “a man”. “A woman” is part of a nominal phrase that typical has subject, object or indirect object. There is only one subject “a woman” and only one object “a man” for the clause, thus it is “a woman” that is not allowed to authentein and “a man” is also the object of “to teach”.
    1 Timothy 2:12 nominal phrase on Women in Ministry by Cheryl Schatz

  83. Craig,
    As far as the sexual element goes, this is found in Revelation 2:20 where we see one woman (Jezebel) who is teaching (to teach) and leading (mislead, deceive, cause to wander) God’s bond-servants (plural).

    Revelation 2:20 (NASB95)
    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.

    I would think that if God wanted us to know that the woman of 1 Timothy 2:12 was leading astray men, I would think that it would be plural rather than singular. While it may be “one man at a time” (as any sexual act usually is) it still would qualify as leading “men” astray.

  84. Craig #77,
    Lastly you said:

    The “they” in v15 could be the woman and one man, the woman and many men, or just the men.

    The “they” has to refer back to something already in the text. If Paul had said that “I do not allow a woman to teach men…” then the “they” could be men alone or a woman plus men. That just doesn’t seem to fit. Here is why. If by “a woman” and “a man” Paul meant all women and all men, then what you would have in verse 15 is “all women (generically) will be saved…if they (all women and all men – or just all men) continue in the faith… Will all women be saved by what all men do? I think this would cause a lot of problems to the text and to the Bible in context.

  85. #78 TL,
    You have made some good points!

    The one thing, though, that I don’t think that Paul is talking about in 1 Timothy 3:15 is that smaller groups that gather together are not the church of God while the entire group is. When we meet together whether we are few or many, we are the church. I know that many complementarians believe that a woman can have a “role” of teaching as long as it is in a small group since it isn’t in the “church”, but I fail to see that a small group of Christians meeting together does not constitute “the church”. The early church, after all, met in people’s homes and these homes were not always very big.

  86. Craig #81,
    You said:

    if comps take this line- that women sinned “in Eve”, I wonder what happens to their Federal headship of Adam?? I didn’t think to ask this at the time.

    This becomes a big problem if they are going to say that Eve represents all women as Adam represents all of mankind. Eve is NEVER said to be a representative of all women. A person cannot give 1 Timothy 2:15 as proof that Eve represents all women by interpreting the “she” as Eve. This is circular reasoning. Also the fact that verse 15 is future tense rules out all women who are dead at the time of the writing of 1 Timothy. A dead woman, Eve included, cannot be saved by what other people do with their faith.

    The only other time that Eve is mentioned in the new testament is 2 Cor. 11:3.

    2 Corinthians 11:3 (NASB95)
    3 But I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds will be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ.

    In this verse, Eve is not named as a representative of anyone, but she is used as an example of being led astray. Thus anyone (male or female) can be in the same position as Eve was, if they allow themselves to be led away from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ.

    So for anyone who claims that Eve represents all women, ask them to show you this from the Scripture. Both 1 Timothy 2:14 and 15 have grammar that excludes Eve from being “the woman” or “she” and no other verse in the Scriptures ever say that Eve represents all women.

  87. Craig,
    Did the graphs help a bit, or is the relationship of “a man” as object relating to “a woman” still clear as mud?

  88. Thanks Cheryl for this information @#82,83 regarding whether the object of “a man” would modify just “authentein” or also “to teach”. I have heard both points of view from “experts”. Moo in RBMW p186 agrees with you, that it relates to both verbs. But in the footnote p497 he says Payne disagrees. I have heard/read someone else also (can’t remember who) say that “a man” only relates to “authentein” and not “teach’. I had concluded that it is probably not possible to be conclusive from the text itself which one it is. I will take your information into account in my thinking. I noticed you said “typically has object or indirect object” – does a verb have to have an object? If I say “I do not permit a girl to run or throw a ball”, “run” doesn’t have to have an object.

  89. I am still thinking about whether 1 Tim 2:11-15 has to be understood as a husband/wife private thing or whether there is any way Paul could have been referring to matters going on in the wider church.
    In the example I gave @77, say the woman (let’s call her Betty) had actually led no one astray yet but was trying to with 20 different men, don’t you think Paul could still have expressed “I do not permit Betty to authentein a man”? I can agree that he could also have said “I do not permit Betty to authentein men”, but both sound possible to me.
    If Paul still had this idea in his mind of deceived Betty endeavouring to enrich many men in their spiritual experience through sex with her, could he not also have expressed it as “But she will be saved… if they (meaning all the men she was trying to influence, or possibly her and the men)?
    The sexual element seems to work in well with Adam and Eve as well, with deceived Eve offering Adam something supposedly to enhance his spirituality or godliness, but ends in death. The men in Ephesus must not be like Adam, but rather, by continuing in faith, love, holiness with propriety can be involved in her salvation.
    Could this Artemis problem also be related to such things as
    1 prayers for a quiet life 2:1,2 (in contrast to the riots of Acts 19)
    2 Jesus is the one mediator v5 in contrast to the temple priestesses
    3 Anger, fighting, disputing v8 ?

  90. Craig, you wrote:
    “In the example I gave @77, say the woman (let’s call her Betty) had actually led no one astray yet but was trying to with 20 different men, don’t you think Paul could still have expressed “I do not permit Betty to authentein a man”? I can agree that he could also have said “I do not permit Betty to authentein men”, but both sound possible to me.”

    The interesting thing about this is that in order for it to be about a husband and a wife, it had to be in the singular. Because gunaiki and andra can be either woman or wife and man or husband, there has to be a relational context in order to see them as husband and wife. This can be achieved by either both being in plural or both being singular. But when both are singular it is more likely, unless there is nothing else in the sentence that shows a marital relationship. That is our problem here.; there is nothing else in that sentence relating to marriage, rather it’s about A woman learning. But if it were a singular woman toward all men then it could not be about a marital relationship. So we have the singular which very well could be about a marital situation, yet nothing else in the sentence or section about a marital relationship. That is, until we get to verse 15. Then the “they” can be a married couple than women in general because the subject touches upon bearing children, even though it likely is referring to “the childbearing”.

    So, no matter where I get glimpses of clarity, I still see some problems. Frankly, I don’t think Paul meant for this to be clear to everyone. He was certainly capable of being clear in other places. It seems to me, he wanted to keep the details hidden because he wanted to give the persons involved privacy to do things rightly. This points to a particular situation, and not any kind of loose universal command. God doesn’t give second hand commands nor does God give them in a confusing manner. God is always quite clear and willing to repeat to make it clear, when He issues a command for righteousness.

  91. “Could this Artemis problem also be related to such things as
    1 prayers for a quiet life 2:1,2 (in contrast to the riots of Acts 19)
    2 Jesus is the one mediator v5 in contrast to the temple priestesses
    3 Anger, fighting, disputing v8 ?”

    I suspect much of this has to do with the heresies of gnosticism and the heresies of the Ephesus temple of ??? (forgot the name). Even verses 2:13-15 hint at correcting gnostic false teachings.

  92. “If I say “I do not permit a girl to run or throw a ball”, “run” doesn’t have to have an object.”

    Same problem. The running is likely relative to throwing the ball. You’d have to pick two subject that really don’t relate. Because of the subject of false teaching in chapter one, the teaching in 2:12 likely relates to coercive usurping of authority of “a man” in that sentence.

  93. “#78 TL,
    You have made some good points!

    The one thing, though, that I don’t think that Paul is talking about in 1 Timothy 3:15 is that smaller groups that gather together are not the church of God while the entire group is. When we meet together whether we are few or many, we are the church. I know that many complementarians believe that a woman can have a “role” of teaching as long as it is in a small group since it isn’t in the “church”, but I fail to see that a small group of Christians meeting together does not constitute “the church”. The early church, after all, met in people’s homes and these homes were not always very big.”

    Exactly. Also appreciated your comments 82-85.

  94. and I have to make Paul a nonsensical idiot who is deliberating deceiving and tricking everyone when he uses singular and plural in verse 15 to mean the same thing.

    I can’t imagine him writing this letter and coming to this point in it and use “she” and “they” in the same sentence to mean the same thing. Definately nonsensical. Who in their right mind, would write like that??

  95. A person cannot give 1 Timothy 2:15 as proof that Eve represents all women by interpreting the “she” as Eve.

    As it is made clear that Adam represented mankind, one would think that such a representation for half the race would be made clear also. I mean, if Eve truly did represent all women wouldn’t we have to know about it? In other words, wouldn’t God have made it very clear through Paul? And since it surley is not clear since “she” must be interpreted to mean “Eve” then how could any woman really know? We know that Adam represnted all mankind, so how come we don’t kow anything similar about Eve? Why would women be left out on a clear teaching on Eve being their rep? Did Paul not care enough to make such a thing clear as he did on Adam?

  96. It’s a silly idea really that Eve is the rep of women as dervied from an interpretation of “she” in v15. Such a thing would be a serious teaching, and not something written so unclearly.

  97. Paul meant to say that Eve is rep of women but he just didn’t quite get it across. That’s laughable.

  98. You all make very good points.

    I think the idea that Paul is talking about an individual woman would be well-served by doing a post that makes it clearer how we know Paul is changing the subject matter from the earlier verses, and why a section about one individual woman and her husband fits in here, sandwiched between general statements about women and men as groups, and general statements about qualifications for leaders– rather than in with the specific stuff about other individuals in Chapter 1.

    Context is where I’m having trouble with this view, and context is where I think this interpretation is still weakest, without further development of the argument.

  99. TL @#93. I am not sure that I understand what you mean here. I will try and clarify what I am thinking.
    When we have 2 verbs in a sentence separated by an “or” and an object following only the second verb, how do we know if the object applies to both verbs or only the second verb?
    1 I do not permit a girl to run or throw a ball.
    2 I do not permit a girl to kick or throw a ball.
    3 I do not permit a woman to teach or authentein a man.
    In 1, “a ball” probably only relates to throw. We know this because it is quite normal to just “run” but it is not normal to “run a ball”.
    In 2, “a ball” probably relates to both “kick” and “ball” because it is quite normal to “kick a ball” and less normal to just “kick”.
    In 3 it is ambiguous. It is a normal activity to just “teach”. It is also a normal activity to “teach a man”. Both would be possible.
    Therefore, I conclude that unless Greek is quite different to English in this and agreed upon by Greek scholars then it is safest not to base an argument on one meaning or the other. But then again, I could be totally wrong!

  100. #89 Craig,
    I think the answer deserves a post of its own since the information will likely be more useful to people found in a body of a post rather than having to go through all the comments. If you can have a bit of patience with me, I will set this one up as my next post and work at it as quickly as I can (understanding that “quickly” for me these days with a huge workload isn’t always real “fast”) :)

  101. Cheryl, @85

    The “they” has to refer back to something already in the text.

    Does it definitely? Is it too “outside the box” to wonder whether Paul could be referring to his prior communication with Timothy and what Tim and Paul both knew about the situation rather than what he has just written?
    We often say how it could be like listening to one side of a phone call, or a reply to a letter we don’t have.
    If Timothy has asked him about a particular woman and a particular man, or a particular wife and husband, or a particular woman and several men, Paul, with this specific situation in mind, could be stating the principle that he would go by and apply to this case “A woman should learn and I do not permit this kind of behaviour of a deceived woman teaching falsely and authenteining a man. He then gives the reason for this principle in v13,14. Then he gives the specific outcome in v15 that will occur in this case if the principles of v11,12 are followed. So the “she” and the “they” refers back to the letter of Timothy rather that v12.
    If Tim has written about a particular wife and husband, then “she” refers to the wife and “they” refers to the wife and husband. If Tim wrote about a woman and several men, then “she” would be the woman and “they” could be the men.
    Does that make any sense at all as a possibility to anyone else besides me???

  102. If Tim wrote about a woman and several men, then “she” would be the woman and “they” could be the men.
    Does that make any sense at all as a possibility to anyone else besides me???

    Craig,
    On possibilities, here’s how I kinda look at that. Anything outside of what IS written (the box) is possible since I don’t know what was happening outside of what is written. I cannot determine then what is outside the box and therefore cannot make conclusions based on what is outside the box. So I have to stay with the text and from the text make my conclusions which is within reason rather than making conclusions based on possibilities that I have no idea about, which isn’t reasonable to me. Does that make sense? That’s how I kinda look at it. The point is to determine what is in the text anyway and not what is outside of it.
    Then the thought of an individual woman “she” and men “they” brings me right back to the question, why did Paul use “a woman” and “a man”? To be consistant both would either have to refer to individuals, a woman and a man, or groups of women and men. I think consistency is better than inconsistency. So if Timothy wrote about a woman and several men how come Paul wrote back then about “a woman” and “a man” rather than “a woman” and “men”?

  103. If Tim wrote about a woman and several men, then “she” would be the woman and “they” could be the men.
    Does that make any sense at all as a possibility to anyone else besides me???

    Also if we were to take this idea of Timothy having written to Paul about a woman and several men as a possibility then v15 is entirley without a context – information we’ve no idea about and in that case v15 would be floating in space and taken from it’s home which is vv11-14 at the very least.

  104. So the “she” and the “they” refers back to the letter of Timothy rather that v12.

    This is interesting. Is it possible from outside the passage? I think the question is rather, what’s possible from within the box (the text). Is it possible from within the box of what is written that Paul had in mind an individual woman and men? Based on what is inside the box itself, I cannot see how it is possible.

  105. To me is doesn’t make much sense to focus on what is outside the box, because we don’t kow what is outside the box. So when people talk possibilities, though interesting (because I LOVE the idea of possibilities) I wonder why? Why can we not stay within the boundaries that scripture itself places? What is written is where the lines are drawn. Scripture itself gives the boundaries. But we try and draw lines outside of the lines already drawn. For me, by looking outside of what is written which is what we do know is like like looking at the scriptures as if they were written in pencil, and taking an eraser and erasing what is written. That’s kinda how I view the idea of thinking of possibilities outside the box (scripture).

  106. Leave the lines alone! Don’t erase! lol ;P

  107. Possibilities? We need to know where the line is drawn. Where can we see the line drawn? That is the question. :)

  108. All the possibilities that we could come up with, ever notice, are NOT biblical?

  109. I’ve said my peace on possibilities. Thanks for letting me comment one hundred times :)

  110. There are several issues that I am thinking about at the moment
    1 The only reasonable way I have seen so far for explaining “she” in v15 is as a particular Ephesian woman as Cheryl does. The arguments that “she” is “Eve”, or “Eve representing women” don’t seem very satisfactory to me. Many egals and comps seem to get very messy in their explanations of this.
    2 Cheryl’s explanation of “they” seems a very good one to me, and may be the only reasonable possibility and so may well be correct.
    3 I know both egals and comps who can see the force of Cheryl’s argument from v15, but find it difficult to see how v11-15 then fits in with the context eg Kristen. My last attempt @#102 was an attempt to see v11-15 as dealing with the same subject as the whole of chapter 2 and find some possible explanation for why Paul could have referred to the parties involved as “she” and “they” in v15, and “a woman” and “a man” in v12. From the responses I have got it seems like I am barking up the wrong tree and just showing my ignorance of grammar -it never has been a strong point of mine. I asked
    “Does that make any sense at all as a possibility to anyone else besides me???”
    I have one hundred No’s from Pinklight :) and zero Yes’s so far. Doesn’t look very promising!

  111. continued from above
    4 I know both egals and comps who can see the force of Cheryl’s argument from v15, and yet they still have difficulty accepting that v11,12 are speaking of particular individuals. This makes me wonder “are there any other ways of understanding v11-15, where Paul could be expressing a principle in v11,12 while still making sense of the “she” and “they” of v15.
    Pinklight, I understand that you are very hesitant about constructing possible scenarios to explain the meaning of bible passages, but don’t we use background information learned from outside the bible to understand difficult passages quite frequently?
    Anyway, suppose Timothy had asked Paul about a particular woman and a particular man. Could Paul have answered this by first stating the principles that would apply to the specific situation in v11,12 (while Paul and Timothy would know exactly who these principles would be relevant to), and then in v15 spoken of them as “she” (the woman) and “they” (the woman and the man/her husband). This is very similar to Cheryl’s view, but just with a slight twist in v11,12 for those who can’t see the Greek as directly referring to a particular woman and man. Does this make any sense, or is this not possible from the grammar as well? Thanks.

  112. Thanks Pinklight for all of your one hundred comments of disapproval of my suggestion! I appreciate your honesty and being willing to say what you think. In a way, it is kind of encouraging when people disagree. If I know people are willing to be critical of an idea when they don’t agree with it, then it makes it more meaningful when you do agree and say encouraging things. So thanks :) .

  113. I was foreman on a jury one time and Ihad to keep minding one of the jurors that we were the judges of facts, not possibilities. The lawyers were responsible for giving us the facts and we had to restrain our analysis and conclusions on those facts alone (as well as our determination of how trustworthy they were). Paul is an excellent attorney AND a trustworthy witness. Although he is writing to a friend about circumstances that contain more detail and color than what we have been provided, he still has the inspiration of the Holy Spirit backing him up and his words still have been included in the canon of Scripture, all of which is beneficial to us. Therefore, we can trust we have what we need within the text provided. Although we certainly have to consider context and history to properly judge the facts, the facts are all we judge.

  114. Quoting from CBE Scroll:

    Then in 1 Tim 2:14 Paul points out that (1) Adam (in this case, referring to the man) was NOT deceived, while (2) the woman was deceived and (3) broke God’s command.”

    Well said, Don. And in continuing along this thought, one might ask why Paul brought this up at all. In fact, these thoughts follow along quite well with the progression of the topic of false teaching. There were some who deliberately spoke falsely (Hymenaeus and Alexander) and some who were deceived in their false teachings: 1:3-7. Both Adam and Eve broke God’s command, but one did so knowingly and the other was deceived and fell into transgression. The phrase ‘fell into transgression’ is important.

    In Genesis, although both suffered the just reward for choosing to disobey, there was still a difference in God’s approach toward them. To the woman who was deceived into disobeying, God cursed the one who led her to sin, the serpent, and promised the redeemer would come through her seed. To the man who deliberately chose to disobey, God cursed the ground from which they would both gain their sustenance (no longer would they just reach for food as in the garden), but which the brunt of work would lay on the man’s shoulders as the stronger. She does not get off the hook from her disobedience so that no one in the future can claim innocence when sinning because of deception. After all we do choose who we listen to.

    Going back to Paul’s epistle we see that he is treating the ones from vs. 3-7 differently than those who ‘rejected the faith’. And this is after Paul points out that he himself received mercy because he was an insolent blasphemer who did these things ignorantly in unbelief. There is a difference in not knowing (ignorantly in unbelief) and in one who knows and then rejects (Hymenaeus and Alexander).

    The woman spoken of in 2:11-12 is one (vs. 1:3-7) who was ignorant in her knowledge of Scripture, who probably desired to be a teacher but really didn’t understand what she was talking about. Therefore, there was hope for her (or them) if she were allowed to learn in the demeanor of a student (quietly with full submission), and stopped trying to usurp another’s authority or stopped pushing her beliefs upon others. She was deceived like Eve. And if she (or they) or she and her husband would continue on in their lives with faith, love, holiness and most importantly self control, she would be saved thru the childbearing, the Messiah.

    If one understands it anything like this, they can see it has nothing at all to do with men being preferred first in any fashion, but is about a woman (or a group of women?) who should have mercy extended toward them in their sin because they were duped into it like Eve.

    Now I cannot say that I’ve explained this perfectly. But at this point in time this is how I see it.

    more in a minute……

  115. Craig,

    3 I know both egals and comps who can see the force of Cheryl’s argument from v15, but find it difficult to see how v11-15 then fits in with the context eg Kristen.

    I can understand this somewhat.

    My last attempt @#102 was an attempt to see v11-15 as dealing with the same subject as the whole of chapter 2 and find some possible explanation for why Paul could have referred to the parties involved as “she” and “they” in v15, and “a woman” and “a man” in v12.

    I see. But what would that subject be?

    From the responses I have got it seems like I am barking up the wrong tree and just showing my ignorance of grammar -it never has been a strong point of mine.

    I don’t think it’s a matter of ignorance of grammar. The grammar is the details, the fine points of the over all picture/painting that cannot be IGNORED (the problem) which is what makes it just as important as the entire context (chp 2). The main problem I saw was looking for possibilities outside of what we do know, which is what the text provides.

    I asked “Does that make any sense at all as a possibility to anyone else besides me???”
    I have one hundred No’s from Pinklight and zero Yes’s so far. Doesn’t look very promising!

    One hundred No’s lol :) NO! ;P lol

  116. Craig, you asked is there any other way of seeing this.

    Another way I partially also subscribe to is viewing vs. 13-14 and maybe even 15 to be speaking against some gnostic teachings. Some gnostic teachings taught that is was the woman who was ‘born’ first and the man who was deceived. They also taught that a woman could not be spiritual while performing the very earthly function of having children. Now I’m wondering if Paul isn’t ‘killing two birds with one stone’, in saying what he did. He could be addressing all I just said, while at the same time addressing the false gnostic teachings as well. By pointing out that the man sinned deliberately (not deceived) but it was the woman who was deceived, he can be then admonishing the deceived ‘teacher-wannabe’. She thought she knew so much but she really didn’t know the Scriptures at all and was herself deceived just like Eve. And by admonishing her (or a few women doing the same) to learn and not push their supposed authority around toward either her husband or Timothy or a teacher, Paul can help her to relearn respect toward “husband/leader/teacher” and restore godly relationship, providing she or they or husband/wife life a godly life with self control.

    just another thought…..

  117. Craig,

    4 I know both egals and comps who can see the force of Cheryl’s argument from v15, and yet they still have difficulty accepting that v11,12 are speaking of particular individuals. This makes me wonder “are there any other ways of understanding v11-15, where Paul could be expressing a principle in v11,12 while still making sense of the “she” and “they” of v15.

    The thing here is that the very thing that is difficult to accept which is Paul speaking of particular individuals is then or would be accepted through v15.

    Pinklight, I understand that you are very hesitant about constructing possible scenarios to explain the meaning of bible passages, but don’t we use background information learned from outside the bible to understand difficult passages quite frequently?

    Yes, but constructing possible scenarios that we’ve no idea actually exist is different from using historical context that does exist as a help to view a passage.

    Anyway, suppose Timothy had asked Paul about a particular woman and a particular man. Could Paul have answered this by first stating the principles that would apply to the specific situation in v11,12 (while Paul and Timothy would know exactly who these principles would be relevant to), and then in v15 spoken of them as “she” (the woman) and “they” (the woman and the man/her husband). This is very similar to Cheryl’s view, but just with a slight twist in v11,12 for those who can’t see the Greek as directly referring to a particular woman and man. Does this make any sense, or is this not possible from the grammar as well? Thanks.

    The principle includes vv 13 &14, lack of knowledge and deception. The principle here is that the deceived must learn and not teach (and usurp, dominate) because what they teach is false. Is it possible then that Paul wrote the said principle and not about a particular woman and man in those verses to then in v15 actually write about two real people? It’s not possible because v15 begins with the conjunction “but” which connects it to the previous verses. Grammatically it’s not possible.

  118. Does this make any sense, or is this not possible from the grammar as well? Thanks.

    It did make sense, perfect sense, but the grammar was the stopper. Little detail – “but…”

  119. Thanks Pinklight for all of your one hundred comments of disapproval of my suggestion!

    ;P

    I appreciate your honesty and being willing to say what you think. In a way, it is kind of encouraging when people disagree. If I know people are willing to be critical of an idea when they don’t agree with it, then it makes it more meaningful when you do agree and say encouraging things. So thanks.

    Thanks. I have to disagree where I disagree, can’t help it when it’s something I’m passionate about. I disagree with things said on here all the time but I won’t comment cause I don’t have the passion for the subject. I know I also comment and say more when I disagree…maybe my bad lol ;P And you are so right that it makes it more meaningful when we do agree and say encouraging things.
    Was real passionate about the subject of possibilities (as I am about 1 Tim 2) cause it had come up before and it didn’t sit well with me and it had been a while since I interacted on the subject and so now I thought I’d jump in :)

  120. Also Craig, I wasn’t saying that you were ignoring the grammar in #116 All I meant really was that the grammar cannot/shouldn’t be ignored. How much proper attention has tradition given to 1 Tim 2’s grammar? Like none. 0

  121. Craig,
    You said:

    In the example I gave @77, say the woman (let’s call her Betty) had actually led no one astray yet but was trying to with 20 different men, don’t you think Paul could still have expressed “I do not permit Betty to authentein a man”? I can agree that he could also have said “I do not permit Betty to authentein men”, but both sound possible to me.
    If Paul still had this idea in his mind of deceived Betty endeavouring to enrich many men in their spiritual experience through sex with her, could he not also have expressed it as “But she will be saved… if they (meaning all the men she was trying to influence, or possibly her and the men)?

    There is a problem with adding more people into “they” than what Paul meant. If by “they” Paul meant the deceived woman and her husband, then one person is vital to bringing her to salvation and his influence so important that it is mentioned by Paul. But what if the woman had been teaching 10 men? If we include all ten in the “they” then all ten are vital or she won’t come to salvation. What if 8 out of the 10 will work with her? Will she come to salvation? 8 out of the 10 is no longer the complete “they”. What happens if her teaching was broadcast to the entire world? Would the entire world have to participate so that “she” can be saved? Do you see the problem with making “they” a crowd or at least even one more than Paul intended?

  122. pinklight,
    You said:

    I mean, if Eve truly did represent all women wouldn’t we have to know about it? In other words, wouldn’t God have made it very clear through Paul? And since it surley is not clear since “she” must be interpreted to mean “Eve” then how could any woman really know? We know that Adam represnted all mankind, so how come we don’t kow anything similar about Eve?

    Very profound questions. Indeed how can we know? The fact is that if it is not found in the Scriptures and we are adding to the text what we think it means rather than mining the text for what is already there, we cannot know and anyone’s thoughts on what it “could” mean are just as good as someone else’s.

  123. Kristen,
    You said:

    I think the idea that Paul is talking about an individual woman would be well-served by doing a post that makes it clearer how we know Paul is changing the subject matter from the earlier verses, and why a section about one individual woman and her husband fits in here, sandwiched between general statements about women and men as groups, and general statements about qualifications for leaders– rather than in with the specific stuff about other individuals in Chapter 1.

    Context is where I’m having trouble with this view, and context is where I think this interpretation is still weakest, without further development of the argument.

    I will also work on a post along this line. I will apologize in advance for being slow. I am overworked at the present, preparing for three talks on Women in Ministry for July and I need to prioritize my efforts as best I can as I have a sick mother-in-law who may cause us to drop everything to attend to her. But the things we have been talking about are very much on my mind to provide a one-stop place for the answer to your question.

  124. http://strivetoenter.com/wim/2009/05/30/neopatriarch-fails-to-refute-cheryl/

    Paul’s passage that connects verses 11-15 are one unit attached together with the conjunctions of “but” “for” “and” “but”.

    http://strivetoenter.com/wim/2009/03/25/round-4-interview-with-the-apostle-paul/

    It is impossible to remove the connection between “the woman” and the anarthrous noun in verses 11 & 12 because the entire passage is connected together with conjunctions.

  125. http://strivetoenter.com/wim/2009/05/30/neopatriarch-fails-to-refute-cheryl/

    The first problem that Neopatriarch has with the connection to Eve is that he makes both Adam and Eve as a representative of the male and female with no proof at all that Paul is using Adam and Eve in this way.

    So I ask, what proof does Neopatriarch offer that Paul is making a generic statement about all males and all females? He makes a claim through Mounce that there is a general principle being stated but he gives no data to back up such a statement. This is very poorly done and does nothing to refute my exegesis that “a woman” is a particular woman who was involved with false doctrine.

  126. Craig,
    You said:

    Is it too “outside the box” to wonder whether Paul could be referring to his prior communication with Timothy and what Tim and Paul both knew about the situation rather than what he has just written?

    Yes. “Outside” the box thinking is very important to dig into the facts, but “outside” of what is revealed takes one only into speculation and then God’s inspiration becomes subject to our speculation.

    When I look at a problem that needs to be solved from the Scripture, I look at it from a forensic point of view. What details can I mine from the text? What specific grammar can I find? What was previously said that is being referred to in the text? What is referenced later on in the text?

    If we are looking at a man’s writings we may go down a lot of rabbit trails speculating on what he may mean. But when it comes to inspiration, we look at every inspired piece of the text as primary evidence first. We also consider the culture of the day, but we do not force fit it into the text. And lastly grammar plays a key role in figuring out what the text means. If we must read into the text improper grammar, then we are in error and must keep looking.

    So could Paul be referring to “they” from a previous letter. No. That would be improper grammar. “They” is a pronoun that needs to attach to something. While Paul can say “a woman” (a noun) without identifying the specific woman, he cannot say “they” without a reference back to who he is referring to or the text would be impossible to understand.

    For example in 1 Timothy 2 what if Paul had said:
    “I want the men in every place to pray, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and dissension. I am also not allowing her to teach but she must remain silent.”

    …this would be nonsensical because we would not know who “she” is that Paul is not allowing to teach since there is no singular “she” in the text and it would be improper to attach a singular pronoun to “women”. In the same way, Paul has to reference who the “they” are or he cannot say “they”. The pronoun has to go back to something in the text or it is uninspired nonsense meant to mislead and confuse.

    Now if “a woman” and “a man” is generic, they could refer to all people, but “a man” that is generic cannot be referenced to as a plural pronoun. A generic man is always called “he” not “they”. So the rule is that you can use a noun and a pronoun to reference back to the noun, but you cannot use a pronoun unless there is something in the text to refer back to. God’s inspired Word would never break basic grammar rules.

    We often say how it could be like listening to one side of a phone call, or a reply to a letter we don’t have.

    I agree that a private letter would be like listening to one side of the story, but a letter must also follow grammar rules if it is inspiration from God Himself. We may not have all the details, but we certainly are not left with improper grammar. Thoughts?

  127. Craig,
    Continuing on, you said:

    If Timothy has asked him about a particular woman and a particular man, or a particular wife and husband, or a particular woman and several men, Paul, with this specific situation in mind, could be stating the principle that he would go by and apply to this case “A woman should learn and I do not permit this kind of behaviour of a deceived woman teaching falsely and authenteining a man. He then gives the reason for this principle in v13,14. Then he gives the specific outcome in v15 that will occur in this case if the principles of v11,12 are followed. So the “she” and the “they” refers back to the letter of Timothy rather that v12.
    If Tim has written about a particular wife and husband, then “she” refers to the wife and “they” refers to the wife and husband. If Tim wrote about a woman and several men, then “she” would be the woman and “they” could be the men.

    Here is the problem with “a woman” and “a man” as “men” – Paul would have had to say “a woman” and “men”. It would be inconsistent to make part of the sentence as a singular particular woman and the rest as generic man. Paul would have had to refer to “several men” who are not “all men” but particular men, in the plural. The clear way of communicating this would be “I do not allow a woman (anaphoric reference to “the woman” of verse 14) to teach or authentein men.

  128. Craig,
    I would also like to challenge you to give me any example in the Scripture where an definite man (or woman) is spoken of without the definite article alongside with a singular form without the definite article that means generic man. I think you will find that this is inconsistent usage of words and would make one’s communication difficult to understand.

  129. Hi Craig,
    I am still working through the comments here. You said:

    3 I know both egals and comps who can see the force of Cheryl’s argument from v15, but find it difficult to see how v11-15 then fits in with the context eg Kristen. My last attempt @#102 was an attempt to see v11-15 as dealing with the same subject as the whole of chapter 2 and find some possible explanation for why Paul could have referred to the parties involved as “she” and “they” in v15, and “a woman” and “a man” in v12. From the responses I have got it seems like I am barking up the wrong tree and just showing my ignorance of grammar -it never has been a strong point of mine. I asked
    “Does that make any sense at all as a possibility to anyone else besides me???”
    I have one hundred No’s from Pinklight :) and zero Yes’s so far. Doesn’t look very promising!

    I don’t particularly like grammar, but I have come to understand that it is a friend and an ally. Grammar forms a protective boundary around our speculations and reigns them in. This is a good thing because I believe that God meant His Word to be understand and thus it doesn’t need to be subject to our guessing. I would agree that without the grammar guardian, your view could be a valid option.

  130. Craig,
    You also said:

    4 I know both egals and comps who can see the force of Cheryl’s argument from v15, and yet they still have difficulty accepting that v11,12 are speaking of particular individuals. This makes me wonder “are there any other ways of understanding v11-15, where Paul could be expressing a principle in v11,12 while still making sense of the “she” and “they” of v15.
    Pinklight, I understand that you are very hesitant about constructing possible scenarios to explain the meaning of bible passages, but don’t we use background information learned from outside the bible to understand difficult passages quite frequently?

    Background information is very helpful to understand the cultural context. However background information will not help us in alleviating the problem of a rogue pronoun missing its corresponding noun. The pronoun “they” cannot attach to a missing noun located in a previous unpublished letter. A pronoun must have a corresponding match and so this is where we must conduct the parameters for our search.

    Anyway, suppose Timothy had asked Paul about a particular woman and a particular man. Could Paul have answered this by first stating the principles that would apply to the specific situation in v11,12 (while Paul and Timothy would know exactly who these principles would be relevant to), and then in v15 spoken of them as “she” (the woman) and “they” (the woman and the man/her husband).

    This seems highly unlikely. How is it that all of these deceived women are only teaching one man each? Are we really to assume that there are perhaps many deceived women who are not teaching publicly but are teaching and authentein(ing) one man each and that these women will all be saved if the one man they are teaching (who by the way are all saved and not in need of salvation for themselves) will walk with them in faith, love and self control? If this is the case then this is common and not about one woman at all. But if it isn’t about one woman, then what do we do with verse 14 “the woman” who is in the transgression? How would we know that we are to have two different groups instead of one woman throughout the entire context? And lastly, if this was such a common problem that Paul would make a general statement about the generic woman who is teaching one generic man, then why is this problem never mentioned anywhere else? Can we learn general things about this situation that can apply to ourselves and the Church? Yes, I do think so, but I think it would be very hard to defend. I think it would be akin to saying that Paul was giving a general statement about 1 Cor. 5:1

    1 Corinthians 5:1 (NASB95)
    It is actually reported that there is immorality among you, and immorality of such a kind as does not exist even among the Gentiles, that someone has his father’s wife.

    This could be a generic man who is living with his generic father’s wife, but I don’t think so. The passage does not have names attached and “someone” is very indefinite but I don’t think that it is a generic principle that is being referenced.

    This is very similar to Cheryl’s view, but just with a slight twist in v11,12 for those who can’t see the Greek as directly referring to a particular woman and man. Does this make any sense, or is this not possible from the grammar as well?

    I think your view will be harder to prove for you will have to deal with the issue of why every false woman teacher is only teaching one man. Aren’t there any false teachers who are teaching a man and a couple of women? Or two men? Or a man, a woman and two children? No, I think the anaphoric reference from verse 14 back to verses 11 & 12 forces us to see this as a specific example. More on that later.

  131. Craig,
    You said:

    If I know people are willing to be critical of an idea when they don’t agree with it, then it makes it more meaningful when you do agree and say encouraging things.

    AMEN!! Debating and critiquing, with an attitude of love and respect can be very helpful and bring about meaningful dialog and it makes the words of thanks and “I get it!” much sweeter!

  132. gengwall,
    You said:

    I was foreman on a jury one time and Ihad to keep minding one of the jurors that we were the judges of facts, not possibilities. The lawyers were responsible for giving us the facts and we had to restrain our analysis and conclusions on those facts alone (as well as our determination of how trustworthy they were). Paul is an excellent attorney AND a trustworthy witness.

    Excellent! That is also how I look at it. As a crusty old lawyer used to say “Just the facts Ma’am!”

  133. TL,
    You made very good points!

    Going back to Paul’s epistle we see that he is treating the ones from vs. 3-7 differently than those who ‘rejected the faith’. And this is after Paul points out that he himself received mercy because he was an insolent blasphemer who did these things ignorantly in unbelief. There is a difference in not knowing (ignorantly in unbelief) and in one who knows and then rejects (Hymenaeus and Alexander).

    Amen! There is still going to be a personal consequence to sinning because of being deceived so we need to be careful and not careless in what we trust, but there is an assurance that God offers mercy to those who are not openly defiant in His face.

  134. TL,
    You said:

    Another way I partially also subscribe to is viewing vs. 13-14 and maybe even 15 to be speaking against some gnostic teachings. Some gnostic teachings taught that is was the woman who was ‘born’ first and the man who was deceived. They also taught that a woman could not be spiritual while performing the very earthly function of having children. Now I’m wondering if Paul isn’t ‘killing two birds with one stone’, in saying what he did. He could be addressing all I just said, while at the same time addressing the false gnostic teachings as well.

    This may very well be a subtle refutation of this false teaching. So let me ask you, why do you think it is such a serious error to teach that the woman was created first and that the man was the one who was deceived?

  135. pinklight,
    You said:

    Is it possible then that Paul wrote the said principle and not about a particular woman and man in those verses to then in v15 actually write about two real people? It’s not possible because v15 begins with the conjunction “but” which connects it to the previous verses. Grammatically it’s not possible.

    Thanks for that reminder! Yes, pinklight is right in that the entire passage is connected with conjunctions and is actually one long sentence. It isn’t two thoughts but one long solution-first-then-problem-then-ultimate solution. And everything is connected to the other parts.

  136. Craig,
    You said:

    I disagree with things said on here all the time but I won’t comment cause I don’t have the passion for the subject.

    Huh? No way! Disagree? All the time? Sheesh 😉

  137. ”This may very well be a subtle refutation of this false teaching. So let me ask you, why do you think it is such a serious error to teach that the woman was created first and that the man was the one who was deceived?”

    Leading question. (smiles) I suspect it is tied to some other gnostic teaching venerating women. But I’m not well versed on all the gnostic teachings. Neither men nor women should be venerated over the other. They are as badly wrong as the patriarchal teaching that say men are superior to women.

  138. Huh? No way! Disagree? All the time? Sheesh

    Yes, I disagree with many parts of comments that are said here, admittedly, and very little do I disagree with Cheryl’s. But when I do, it’s game lol Just playen lol

  139. Shoot, I couldn’t count on my hands how many times I’ve disagreed with you Cheryl because it would be too much. So that’s very little :) I can be like a shark *grin* if I gotta problem with something, I come out *grin* lol I be like “W H A” ? LOL So in a playful mood :)

  140. W H A CHU say? lol

  141. @114 Love it! :)

  142. Thanks everyone for all your helpful comments!
    I will probably need to reread the comments to properly digest them all.
    I particularly found the comments about grammar useful. Thanks Cheryl, Pinklight, TL and Gengwall for being willing to go over things which may be quite basic for you in order to help me understand things better.
    I can understand the dangers of trying to bring in too much assumed outside information to help to explain the text.
    I can understand that if we stick with what is written in 1 Tim 2:11-15, and stick with the grammar that is there, my suggestions so far for connecting v11-15 with the rest of the chapter, and for getting past the problem that many have in seeing v11,12 as dealing with a particular woman and a particular man have failed. Thanks for being willing to hear them and correct me. It is much better getting things sorted out here amongst friends than in some other less loving environments!

  143. Pinklight asked @116 “But what would that subject be?” in relation to ch2.
    I am thinking about false teaching and authenteining, and the problems in the congregation being caused by this.

  144. Cheryl. @137 you thought it was me who said
    “I disagree with things said on here all the time but I won’t comment cause I don’t have the passion for the subject.”
    Actually it was Pinklight. I would never disagree with anyone here :)

  145. I hope I’m not driving you all mad. You may all cry out “Oh no, not another suggestion from Craig! At the risk of boring you to tears, here goes…

    If I am understanding things correctly, then to harmonize v12 and v15 grammatically, there are only 2 possible alternatives:
    1 In v12 “a woman” refers to a particular Ephesian woman,“a man”refers to a particular Ephesian man/husband, In v15 “she” refers to the same woman, and “they” refers to both the woman and the man/her husband. This is Cheryl’s view. It has to overcome difficulties of a) v11,12 “sounding” generic to many people, and b) context- many people see the chapter dealing more with groups of people.
    If the second possible grammatical alternative which I outline below is untenable, then this first alternative is the only possible one left, and so must be Paul’s meaning. We must accept the difficulties and work toward understanding the solutions to those difficulties -which Cheryl has been so wonderfully kind in working so hard at for us. Thank you Cheryl.
    2 The second possible grammatically correct alternative would see “a woman”, “a man”,”she”, and “they” as all generic. Many accept “a woman” and “a man” (v12) as generic. Would that then mean “I do not permit any woman to teach-authentein any man”? This certainly includes prohibiting this activity to one man, but doesn’t necessarily sound to me like Paul would only be prohibiting this activity if it was to one man, but also to a number of men as the case may be.
    I have heard many explanations that are”sort of” generic for v15 but none are precise if I understand properly what is meant by generic. I have a question. If “she” and”they” are generic in v15, and linked to v12, then does “she” then refer to any woman involved in authenteining a man and “they” to any woman involved in authenteining a man together with any man she is authenteining? I may well have missed it, but I don’t think I have heard this ever suggested as an alternative. I may be wrong, but I think I recall people usually referring to “she” as women in general, and “they” as women also, or perhaps “they” as women and men in general when thinking in terms of this alternative.
    So am I correct in my understanding of what “she” and “they” in v15 would mean if they are generic, and grammatically linked to v12?
    If I am, then for Cheryl’s explanation to be the only one possible, I must dismiss this second alternative as a viable option.
    It has positives of context and being generic in v12 where many think it ‘sounds” generic.
    It has two potential negatives that I can see:
    a How could it be, that any woman who is teaching and authenteining a man, will be saved if she herself together with any man she is authenteining continue in faith etc. As I think about it, could Paul be drawing attention to how much of a team effort is needed to save these women? Imagine a deceived woman who has taught and authenteined ten men. If one of the men gives in to her false teaching and believes her (and possibly has sex with her as a result)- what an encouragement that would be in her deception. On the other hand, if all ten were united in their stand against the false teaching, what a help that would be in coming out of deception and into true faith and continuing on. (I wrote this before I saw your comment Cheryl @ #131, so I need to think about that more)
    b v14 and the Greek tense regarding the woman. As I understand it, the traditional way of understanding Greek tenses points to “the woman” of v14 having to be alive at the time of writing, and so must be the particular Ephesian woman. This seems conclusive, but when I have mentioned this with Pastors at church, and another Moore Theological College student, they are all quick to tell me that the traditional understanding of the Greek is not correct, due to the new “verbal aspect theory”. I don’t know Greek, so at this stage I have no answer for this and so this point is not conclusive for me.
    If anyone is still interested in my ramblings, and wants to help rule out option 2, so that only Cheryl’s view remains, please do. Or if anyone can see any merit in option two, I would be interested in knowing this also.
    Thanks again everyone for putting up with me. :)

  146. Pinklight asked @116 “But what would that subject be?” in relation to ch2.

    I am thinking about false teaching and authenteining, and the problems in the congregation being caused by this.
    Oh, okay. I was thinking that you would have answered differently considering where you were going. Glad I asked then, because I was curious.

    I particularly found the comments about grammar useful. Thanks Cheryl, Pinklight, TL and Gengwall for being willing to go over things which may be quite basic for you in order to help me understand things better.

    It took awhile for the grammar to really sink in because when I started learning about it life was busy and alot was going on… I’ve learned alot since finding Cheryl :) She’s a treasure :)

  147. I hope I’m not driving you all mad. You may all cry out “Oh no, not another suggestion from Craig! At the risk of boring you to tears, here goes…

    lol There’s nothing like asking questions and seeking and digging. In fact, I don’t have that where I come from ;P People don’t ask, don’t care, don’t think, don’t, don’t, don’t – and that drives me mad :) lol So it’s refreshing, Craig that you do these things. :)

  148. Craig, in regards to your comment #146, I have a question. Where and how do you fit in “the woman” of v14?

  149. This post is helpful on “the woman” of v14.
    http://strivetoenter.com/wim/2010/08/03/a-woman-anaphoric/

    From what I understand “the woman” of v14 must be a specific woman, an actual person and one person because of the article, and the pronoun “she” of v15 must refer back to her. So now with your last suggestion, Craig, my question is how do you explain what Paul is saying since he in this case is speaking of generic woman and a specific woman?

  150. “But she will be saved”, the conjunction connects v15 to the previous v14 and so referes to “the woman” of v14 who must be a specific woman. Where does that lead then? How can “she” be generic when it must refer and connect back to “the woman” of v14 who is a specific woman?

  151. A person cannot give 1 Timothy 2:15 as proof that Eve represents all women by interpreting the “she” as Eve.

    Also there’s no way to make “the woman” of v14 out to be Eve because there is no evidence and proof from the passage to do so. All one can do is interpret without warrant and in that way say that the woman of v14 is Eve.
    So Eve is out of the picture since the text itslef doesn’t tell us that she is Eve, therefore we are left with only one option. One deceived woman whom Paul has left unanamed.

  152. Cheryl said:
    “I will also work on a post along this line. I will apologize in advance for being slow. I am overworked at the present, preparing for three talks on Women in Ministry for July and I need to prioritize my efforts as best I can as I have a sick mother-in-law who may cause us to drop everything to attend to her. But the things we have been talking about are very much on my mind to provide a one-stop place for the answer to your question.”

    Thank you, Cheryl. And take your time; there’s no hurry. I agree that if this is the right interpretation, it really doesn’t matter what others think of it. But I do a lot of presentation of egal interpretations on other people’s blogs– and if I’m going to argue for this view, I need to be able to defend it thoroughly. Right now I am unable to defend it thoroughly because I don’t know how to respond to these issues of context.
    So I’ll be happy to read what you have to say about this, when you have time. :)

  153. The text READS that Paul is making a statement about one specific unnamed woman. That is what the text gives us without addition by adding Eve into v14 or v15 and subtraction by not taking into account Paul’s singular usage throughout the passage thereby making it a generic statement about women that has to do with Eve being their represenative.

  154. The three options and their difficulties as I understand them in summary:
    1) Paul’s statement is about women in general. If this is the case then who’s “she” in v15 and “they”? “She” and “they” can’t be the same thing.
    2) Paul’s statement is generic. If this is the case then who’s “the woman” of v14 that “she” of v15 refers back to?
    3) Paul’s statment prohibits one individual woman – vv 11, 12 & 14. If this is the case then how come it’s placed in between general staments on women and men and general statements on leaders?

  155. Craig,
    You ask very deep questions and this gives me an opportunity to provide deep answers to those who are working hard to comprehend all of this. Thanks so much for pushing me to answer the challenges that you have been getting. Once again this is a much bigger answer than having it buried in comments so I will include your concerns in the second post I will write in answer to Kristen’s questions/concerns. I will include comments on the “verbal aspect theory” as well so you will have an answer to your friends.

    As an aside, I want to say that I have worked hard to dig for an answer that has no holes and fits the text without contradiction. I also am committed to answer any challenge that comes up towards my findings as I am fully convinced that truth stands strong and sure and challenges are an opportunity to bolster what is truth and actually works to make it stronger. It is a win-win situation.

    Also my work was done with my nose deep into the text and into the grammar and I did not have a set person to follow who had already completely plowed the way through the text as I now see it. That didn’t matter to me as it doesn’t qualify as a necessary test for truth. I have been told by many that my work qualifies for a doctoral thesis. What that means is that my work is ground breaking and that in order for it to stand on its own, it must be able to withstand opposition, questions and challenges. I am more than happy to entertain any question or challenge to my viewpoint. I may not always know the answer right away, but I am confident that the Scriptures hold the answer to the challenge against truth. If my thesis is truth, it must stand the challenge. If it is true and stands the challenge it deserves being accepted after it passes the test. Whether I have a degree or not does not matter as far as truth goes. I have read many works by those who have doctorate degrees and I can see huge holes in their work that you could drive a mac truck through them. I have even been privileged to be in the position to have asked questions of some of those who have such degrees and I have not received answers to my questions. That is very telling for truth should stand the challenge.

    I have also seen those who are not studied in the institutes of learning, yet their work has held solidly as truth. I am so glad that God’s gifts are not based on educational standing and that God has been pleased to use those who are not regarded in this world for their education. The bottom line is that truth is provable.

    I will comment here back and forth a bit as I can later, but just to let you know that the full answer will not be in this comment section. Hopefully I will remember to give a link for those who are reading the comments at a later date. If I forget to do that maybe some kind soul will provide the link so that those who are searching for answers will be able to read what I provide.

    Oh, and thanks for the correction regarding who said that they don’t always agree with everything said in the comment section. I was reading from my email and the blockquotes can sometimes mislead me regarding what is quoted by another and what is their own comment. I stand corrected on the quote.

    Thanks a bunch, Craig for all you have commented and challenged here! It is people like you who have pushed me to go above and beyond my own completed work to make it even more accessible to others.

  156. Hope ya’ll don’t mind I post my thoughts :) Having fun here :) lol

    In my summary of the three options, numbers 1 & 2’s difficulties are contradictions. I’m not aware of any contextual contradictions with option number three, Cheryl’s view. In number 1, if Paul is making a general statement about women, plural, then how come he uses the singular “she” in v15? In number 2 if Paul’s statement is generic and speaks of generic woman, “any woman” then how come he speaks of a specific woman in v14, ‘the woman”? Ofcourse comps force Eve into v14,15 but notice it’s a specific woman they force into v14! lol
    Wish I new what the contextual issues were regarding Cheryl’s view, that Kristen you brought up. I don’t know what they are. I’m not asking you to post them, just saying wish I knew.
    And I’m excited for the next post to come! And I’m very glad that you, Craig offered your suggestions, because it helped me work out the information that I’ve learned.

  157. The bottom line is that truth is provable.

    Love this!

  158. Craig,

    just wanted to tell you before my nap :)

    I love all your well thought out suggestions. Thanks for making us think and analyze. It’s good for us.

    Mahalo nui loa!

  159. The text READS that Paul is making a statement about one specific unnamed woman. That is what the text gives us without addition by adding Eve into v14 or v15 and subtraction by not taking into account Paul’s singular usage throughout the passage thereby making it a generic statement about women that has to do with Eve being their represenative.

    The comp view adds and subtracts from the passage. Woah! Double whammy! And that’s while it contradicts itself! lol

  160. Wait, let me correct that. The comp view adds and subtracts to rid of the contradictions.

  161. Thanks everyone for your encouragement.
    Pinklight. @#149 and following, you asked “Craig, in regards to your comment #146, I have a question. Where and how do you fit in “the woman” of v14?”
    When I first found this blog, I read one of Cheryl’s early posts on 1 Tim 2 and bought the DVD’s. As I understand things, Cheryl at that time believed “the woman” of v14 was Eve.
    Later on, I read a post that Cheryl did on Dave Woolcott’s blog, and at that stage, it seems Cheryl had learnt about the Greek tense and so “the woman” of v14 could not be Eve, but must refer to “a woman” of v12.
    Later on, in the post you referred to, Cheryl learnt about the anaphoric reference in Greek and how this would apply to “the woman” of v14 referring back to “a woman” of v11,12.
    In the view I am thinking about in #146 (BTW any of the views I am asking about here lately, are not really “my view”, but rather “a view I am thinking about at the moment as to whether it has any merit or not”), “the woman” of v14 is Eve. If I was to defend this I would say that Eve is mentioned in v13, she is naturally connected with Adam in the fall spoken of in v14, she is called “the woman” in Genesis, the verbal aspect theory in Greek allows for it to be referring to Eve, and Cheryl thought it was the natural reading in 2006.
    The difficulty with this view is that “she” in v15 then naturally refers to Eve, which can’t be because Eve is dead. So we then have to think who else could Paul be referring to? We then go back to v12 to find the answer. So in this view, “a woman” is mentioned in v12, then kinda in parenthesis v13,14 gives some background reasons and example for the prohibition, then the “she” in v15 picks up again from “a woman” in v12. It is only confusing, because Paul happens to use Eve, a woman, in his example. If he had of given another reason, it would not be confusing because “she” would then clearly have referred back to v12.

  162. If anyone asks me what I really think about a natural reading of v11-15, apart from the context, I would answer like this. V11,12 sound like a general comment, but v15 indicates that Paul has a particular woman and man in mind.
    A school principal writes to a teacher, “a girl needs to learn quietly. I do not permit a girl to punch a boy. But she can remain in the class, if they continue to behave appropriately”. It sounds like he is stating a general principle, but his conclusion indicates that he has a particular girl and boy in mind. I guess this is what the anaphoric issue is about.
    I am just raising any other possibilities I can think of to see if I am missing something that could relate more easily with the context. Thanks.

  163. Craig,

    The difficulty with this view is that “she” in v15 then naturally refers to Eve, which can’t be because Eve is dead. So we then have to think who else could Paul be referring to? We then go back to v12 to find the answer. So in this view, “a woman” is mentioned in v12, then kinda in parenthesis v13,14 gives some background reasons and example for the prohibition, then the “she” in v15 picks up again from “a woman” in v12. It is only confusing, because Paul happens to use Eve, a woman, in his example. If he had of given another reason, it would not be confusing because “she” would then clearly have referred back to v12.

    Yeah, it’s that v15 again. Assuming Paul had in mind “Eve” when he wrote “the woman” of v14 then we could reiterate v15 to say this -“But Eve will be saved if they…” and stop there cause things start to get confusing again and all over the place. Eve will be saved in the future, what? She’s dead. But we can’t make her the represenative of women just because all the sudden the passage seems confusing once “she” is connected back to v14 which is thought to be Eve for the reasons you gave and then to end up with an interpretation something like “women will be saved if women…” cause then we’re not sticking with the inspired grammar in v15 of a singular “she” and a plural “they” which results in gooblygooke – women must bare children to be saved, grammar is ignored, women’s salvation is dependant upon what other woman (plus men?) do, blah, confusion.
    She refers back to v14, the woman is not Eve, (cannot be proven, should be added) everything fits nicely, and nothings forced, added or taken away, and there’s no confusion from this hard pasage. :) Something like that? ;P

  164. Craig,

    I am just raising any other possibilities I can think of to see if I am missing something that could relate more easily with the context. Thanks.

    Just some more of my thoughts. For years, I’ve been trying to catch anything I could have missed since I learned of this view. The change from seeing v14 being Eve to not being Eve really didn’t effect the view either, and actually it made it more solid. It actualy made Paul’s statement more tighter when viewed from where I sit and took away any funny ideas about Eve being a represenative of women.

  165. A slightly squirmy problem for “the woman” in v14 not being Eve is that we really need Eve to be there to properly complete Paul’s thought. We want to refer to Eve’s deception from this passage but it is not there any more! We want Paul to have said “Adam was not the one deceived; it was Eve. The woman in Ephesus is just like Eve- she is deceived and has become a sinner.” So we have to insert the thought about Eve as understood, (or mix Eve and the Ephesian woman both into the words somehow) when Paul doesn’t actually say this. With Cheryl’s 2006 view (I hope I am correct in saying this), this is not a problem.

  166. If anyone asks me what I really think about a natural reading of v11-15, apart from the context, I would answer like this. V11,12 sound like a general comment, but v15 indicates that Paul has a particular woman and man in mind.
    A school principal writes to a teacher, “a girl needs to learn quietly. I do not permit a girl to punch a boy. But she can remain in the class, if they continue to behave appropriately”. It sounds like he is stating a general principle, but his conclusion indicates that he has a particular girl and boy in mind. I guess this is what the anaphoric issue is about.
    I am just raising any other possibilities I can think of to see if I am missing something that could relate more easily with the context. Thanks.

    Ah, that’s cool! Works for me too! :) Either way, with or without vv 13 & 14, “she” refers back to a specific woman because of v15. Yes, that’s what the anaphoric issue is about.

  167. Just another question about “the woman” in v14 being the Ephesian woman. In what sense has she become a sinner? Wouldn’t she have always been a sinner? Eve did at one point “become a sinner”.

  168. Having said what I think v11-15 means apart from the context, I will just elaborate a little on #146 and #163 in case the context should alter the way I think about v11-15.
    In the particular school (in Australia this refers to 4-18 year olds) classroom mentioned in #163, there has become quite a problem with several of the girls involved in punching boys.
    The principal writes to the teacher some general things that will help with the problem (v1-7)
    Some of the boys have become quite angry over this punching behavior. (v8)
    The girls doing the punching are dressing with boxing gloves appropriate to deliver a good punch (v9,10)
    Then the principal writes in his letter to the teacher
    “a girl needs to learn quietly. I do not permit a girl to punch a boy. But she can remain in the class, if they continue to behave appropriately”.
    Now whereas I would naturally take this as described in #163, could the context imply that the principal is actually using these words to be discussing a wider phenomena in the classroom than just one girl and one boy. Could he mean
    “a girl (any girl) needs to learn quietly. I do not permit a girl (any girl, and there are several involved in your class) to punch a boy (any boy- and this means that it is wrong for any girl to punch one boy, and so would certainly be wrong if any girl punched several boys). But she (any girl who is punching a boy, whether this is just one boy or several) can remain in the class, if they (any girl who is doing the punching together with any boy she is punching) continue to behave appropriately”.
    I am not sure whether my grammar skills are good enough to know if this is possible. It sounds possible to me, given the context.
    Problems I see if I read 1 Tim 2 this way
    1 If “the woman” in v14 can only possibly refer to a particular Ephesian woman as Pinklight has raised- but still needs further proof to me.
    2 It assumes that the context of ch 2 is dealing with the same problem as v11-15 and this is hard to prove.

  169. Craig,
    A couple of things here. First of all when I did my DVD, I had not researched the grammar on verse 14 as I didn’t see it as a problem or a solution and I took it as I had always been taught. It wasn’t until sometime after my DVD came out that I was challenged with the grammar from verse 14 and it first came from the comp camp. Then later I learned a point of grammar that I had not learned before – the anaphoric usage. The anaphoric hinges on a usage of the noun first of all without the definite article and then the reference is used with the definite article. One cannot have an anaphoric reference without using the definite article for one of the instances. In your reference in #163 you did not use “the girl”. This is essential to use the definite article to have an anaphoric reference back to the indefinite noun.

    Lastly the translation from 1 Tim 2:14 where “the woman” became a sinner is not a good translation. Most Bibles take the form that the NET bible uses:

    NET | 1 Ti 2:14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman, because she was fully deceived, fell into transgression.

    This does not mean that she had not sinned before she was deceived into transgression. But it is a serious sin that is a consequence from being deceived.

  170. Craig #169,
    Your example shows a general usage but doesn’t exactly fit 1 Timothy 2:11-15 as there is no definite article and remaining in the class is not akin to salvation being dependent on any boy who is being punched.

    The fact is that “a woman” or “a girl” can be generic. However the complete context will determine whether the generic meaning fits the text.

    More later (probably with the article unless there are additional thoughts brought up here).

  171. Cheryl @170,
    “In your reference in #163 you did not use “the girl”. This is essential to use the definite article to have an anaphoric reference back to the indefinite noun.”

    Thanks for that point. The idea that the passage later on clarifies what has gone before is what I was meaning. This is the way you understood it in 2006, with v 15 explaining v12. If that is not technically what an anaphoric reference is then thank you for that correction.

  172. Cheryl @170,
    “NET | 1 Ti 2:14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman, because she was fully deceived, fell into transgression.”

    You can probably still appreciate that to most people reading that translation, Eve would fit perfectly. “Fell into transgression” I think would sound more like Eve to many people than someone who is probably not a Christian, deceived and teach – authenteining a man. To me, the clincher though is the Greek. As you say, you believed what most people do- that this was about Eve until you learned more about the Greek. I have heard both sides on this and it seems another issue that I would love to be clear, but isn’t. I’m interested to hear what you have found about the verbal aspect theory. Certainly, if the Greek can be clearly shown to not be able to refer to Eve, then that would virtually clinch your current view of the passage.

  173. Cheryl @171
    “Your example shows a general usage but doesn’t exactly fit 1 Timothy 2:11-15 as there is no definite article”

    The definite article is not in my illustration because it is in v14. If you are correct on vs14 then this whole suggested interpretation falls apart. I am assuming in this that v14 is Eve- this could be wrong, but it may also be correct. I am following the reasoning from #162 “So in this view, “a woman” is mentioned in v12, then kinda in parenthesis v13,14 gives some background reasons and example for the prohibition, then the “she” in v15 picks up again from “a woman” in v12.”
    I am trying to make the generics in v12 and 15 stand out more clearly by this example, so they can be evaluated as a possibility or not.

  174. Cheryl @171
    “remaining in the class is not akin to salvation being dependent on any boy who is being punched.”

    It is just an illustration. I am just trying to emphasize the generics and their possible meanings, not making a theological statement about salvation.

  175. Cheryl @171,
    “The fact is that “a woman” or “a girl” can be generic. However the complete context will determine whether the generic meaning fits the text.”

    Yes. that’s what I’m thinking about and wanting people’s feedback. Thanks.

  176. v14 again.
    “Adam was not the one deceived
    it was the woman who was deceived.”
    Doesn’t this naturally read as though these two statements are contrasted with each other. Don’t we always discuss from this passage, and comparing it with Genesis 3, the difference between Adam’s deliberate sin and Eve’s sin through deception. All this is not in this passage if it is not talking about Eve. The contrast seems to naturally refer to the contrasting responses of Adam and Eve in the fall.
    The Greek would have to be very conclusive to overcome this natural reading.

  177. I really appreciated your comments in #156. So many excellent thoughts.
    I agree that your work with the scriptures, digging into the text, is outstanding and I am very grateful to God for you and the gifts he has given you.
    I agree that a degree does not matter as far as truth goes. A passion for truth, godliness of character, and appropriate gifts from God are far more important. I thank God that I can see and benefit from these things that I see in you.

  178. Hi Craig. Just jumping in to give the ladies a break. THe Greek in vs. 14 and 15 prove conclusively that “the woman” and “she” are not Eve. In verse 14, the “to be” verb is in perfect tense. A correct translation (one of only a few) of the perfect tense in verse 14 can be found in The Concordant Literal New Testament: “yet the woman, being deluded, has come to be in the transgression”. While the deception is in the past, the transgression is STILL ONGOING at the time Paul wrote Timothy. It simply can not be Eve, although Eve is a model of the type of deception based transgression that this Ephesian woman has fallen into. Now, I know, most English bibles translate everything in the past. They are just flat out wrong. Go online and look at any Greek grammar source for the perfect tense in Koine Greek and you will see that the transgression is continuing at the present time. I hate to say almost all of our bible translators have made a huge mistake, but the evidence is clear.

    Of course, verse 15 confirms this. “she” and verse 14’s “the woman” are the same person. Certainly this can’t be disputed. And, as many have mentioned, the salvation for the “she” of vs. 15 is in the future and therefore it can’t refer to Eve. If “she” can’t be Eve and “the woman” and “she” are the same (whether it is specific or generic), then “the woman” can’t be Eve. This is simple logic.

    As for why Paul brought up Eve – I would say that Eve was the perfect example to contrast transgression from deception vs. transgression from full knowledge (like Adam’s). Adam and Eve are a reference that everyone (or at least every Jew) would clearly understand. In fact, I would say there was no better example that Paul could use.

    As to the transgression – certainly the woman was a sinner before she was deceived, as was Paul and everyone else. The point is not that ALL her transgression began at her deception (she isn’t like Eve in that way), but only that the specific one dealing with her false teaching did. She always was a sinner, and would continue to be a sinner even after salvation, just like us all.

  179. Sorry – to sum up then – the quest to find problems with the passage if “the woman” is not Eve, or to try and fit Eve into the passage, while possibly interesting and envigorating, are of little lasting value because “the woman” simpy is not Eve. The grammar proves this. So our quest should be to understand why Paul introduced Adam and Eve and then brought the focus on (or really, back to) this particular Ephesian woman. What is it about Adam and Eve that Paul wants us to see and how does it relate to the situation in Ephesus. OK. Carry on…

  180. I hate to say almost all of our bible translators have made a huge mistake, but the evidence is clear.

    *sigh*
    Still on break…..! :)

  181. Just one reference on the perfect tense in ancient Greek.

    “The perfect tense expresses perfective action. Perfective action involves a present state which has resulted from a past action. The present state is a continuing state; the past action is a completed action.”

    (SYNTAX OF NEW TESTAMENT GREEK, James A. Brooks, Carlton L. Winbery, University Press of America, Lanham, Md., 1988, pp. 104-5 as referenced on http://www.biblestudymanuals.net/new_testament_greek.htm)

    In this case, the past action was the deception and the continuing state is the transgression (false teaching) which resulted from that deception.

  182. So our quest should be to understand why Paul introduced Adam and Eve and then brought the focus on (or really, back to) this particular Ephesian woman. What is it about Adam and Eve that Paul wants us to see and how does it relate to the situation in Ephesus.

    That was where I was goint to next! I was going to begin focusing on just that…but didn’t too far…

  183. Paul has given us some glimpses prior to 2:14 into why he uses Adam and Eve to complete this section on false teaching. Paul speaks of the grace he received because he was ignorant in his transgressions against the Church (1:12-15). He also shows us the condemnation that comes to those who sin with full knowledge like Hymenaeus and Alexander (1:20). In chapter 2 he talks about how God wants all to be saved (2:1-4), and he speaks of Christ and his birth as the source of salvation (1:15). Throughout, false teaching and deception are primary themes. Finally we get to this woman who is “teaching” in an abusive and sinful way, but, who we will soon find out, was as deceived as Paul when he was equally as ruthless and abusive.

    All of these themes, deception, false teaching, condemnation for blatant, “full knowledge” sin, salvation through Christ, with His birth as the initiating event, are played out in Genesis 3. Adam and Eve are the perfect examples not only for verses 11-15 of Chapter 2, but for all of the first two chapters of 1 Timothy. Adam and Eve are the examples, but Paul, Hymenaeus and Alexander, and this Ephesian woman are the contemporary actors whose situations and actions emulate either Adam or Eve.

  184. gengwall,
    Excellent comments! Thanks also for popping in to give me a break!

  185. Craig,
    You said:

    I’m interested to hear what you have found about the verbal aspect theory.

    I will say more about this later, but for now I can give you something to look into. Ask your Greek grammar friends if they are referring to the historical perfect or dramatic perfect. Once you get your answer, look up these terms on the internet. Type in Greek grammar “historical perfect” and note the limitations for the historical perfect and then see if it applies to 1 Timothy 2:14. You will be able to google Dr. Daniel Wallace’s material on line on this subject as well. See what you can figure out on your own and I will fill you in on the refutation later. This is part of the “verbal aspect theory”.

  186. Hi gengwall. Thanks for joining in. I always appreciate your comments.
    Thanks for the quote and explanation from the Concordant Literal NT. @#179.
    Have you ever debated this with someone who believes in “verbal aspect theory”? I have given some comp friends of mine quotes from Cheryl and definitions of perfect tense from text books. People who have trained in Greek under the current Greek lecturer at Moore College in Sydney (Con Campbell) or those who are familiar with his work and book on verbal aspect theory all say that it is not as clear as what traditionally has been taught. One of the staff at church told me that pushing the perfect tense to mean what I was suggesting and you and Cheryl are saying is ridiculous and shows up the fact that “a little Greek is dangerous.”

    Now I would love it to be crystal clear as you say, and I hope it is. But at this stage, I am not sure. Thank you for the reference in #182 re perfect tense.

  187. Gengwall, I can see the argument working backwards from “she” in v15 (who can’t be Eve), being the same person as “the woman” in v14, and “a woman” in v12. This all fits very nicely if the Greek perfect tense definitely means what the traditional text books say.
    It would be a lot easier to accept though if it made more sense of v14, rather than making it more confusing. Even with the perfect tense translated as you did, it would say
    And Adam was not deceived, yet the woman from Ephesus, being deceived, has come to be in the transgression.
    Why does Paul contrast Adam directly with the Ephesian woman? Why does he leave out a step in his logic and an essential point in his argument and not mention that Eve was deceived? Don’t you find this a bit of a “squirmy” part of your argument? Don’t you feel a bit uneasy about saying the passage is about how the woman is like Eve in her deception if Paul never mentions Eve’s deception?
    Now if the Greek is clear, then so be it, and we need to assume Paul left out that bit and hoped that Tim would be able to fill in the gaps or that Eve “morphed” into the Ephesian woman in Paul’s mind as he was writing the sentence because they are so alike. Is that the way Paul normally writes? And then isn’t that getting just as bad as those who “morph” all women into Eve as the “she” in v15?
    Cheryl’s 2006 interpretation, on the other hand, (if I understand it correctly) doesn’t have this problem, and doesn’t get me in quite so much bother when I discuss it with others. So at this stage, I am keeping an open mind on these two alternatives (Cheryl’s 2006 view v Cheryl’s 2011 view) until I can get a better understanding of it.
    Thanks Gengwall and Cheryl for your comments here to help in this. I can see I have a bit of homework to do!

  188. Gengwall @179
    “Of course, verse 15 confirms this. “she” and verse 14’s “the woman” are the same person. Certainly this can’t be disputed.”

    I would agree that this would be normal, but if the information you have about the perfect tense turns out to be inconclusive, and the woman of v14 really is Eve, then I think that Cheryl’s argument from 2006 that ‘she” in v15 must still refer back to v12 would still be valid.

  189. Gengwall @179
    “As for why Paul brought up Eve”

    My question is rather why Paul didn’t bring up Eve.
    I agree with all the things you write in #184 about why Paul brought in Adam and Eve. That’s why I think it a bit strange as to why Paul would have left Eve out and only included Adam in v14.

  190. Thanks Cheryl @#186 for the info on verbal aspect theory. I haven’t looked it up for a while, and didn’t follow much of it when I did, but this sounds like what they are referring to. Looking forward to your refutation when you get a chance. In the meantime, I will try and do my homework :) .
    Language skills seem very important in all this stuff and I feel severely lacking in them at times.

  191. Okay, I have the first of my two promised articles up. The first is here http://strivetoenter.com/wim/2011/06/05/prohibit-teaching-a-man/ I will start working on the second which will include the applicable part of the verbal aspect theory. This second article is likely to take me a bit longer as I will put as much detail as I can into the article to try to satisfy all the questions that I have received.

    What I have found is that sometimes the intricacies of Greek grammar can cause a person to become brain dead or at least just cross eyes in that the person fails to continue to read all of the text and gets hung up on one tense which is taken care of by the indisputable remaining grammar that must go along with it. Hopefully I will be able to bring it down to a level that will make it understandable to all so that none of us has to have crossed eyes and we can see that Paul has really crossed all of his “t”s and dotted all of his “i”s in his amazing work in 1 Timothy 2:11-15!

  192. Craig,
    Stuff has come up and I won’t be able to comment much really, if I even will at all untell I’m less busy, but I wanted to say that what I really like about your comments is that it’s like you’re leaving no stone unturned. You’re on a mission! Love that.

    Cheryl,
    I won’t go into why…but I love the second or last paragraph of your last post #192.

  193. Sorry, love the second paragraph of your last comment #192.

  194. @189

    Gengwall @179:
    “Of course, verse 15 confirms this. “she” and verse 14’s “the woman” are the same person. Certainly this can’t be disputed.”

    I would agree that this would be normal, but if the information you have about the perfect tense turns out to be inconclusive, and the woman of v14 really is Eve, then I think that Cheryl’s argument from 2006 that ‘she” in v15 must still refer back to v12 would still be valid.

    Here’s the problem I see with this, Craig. Assuming, while digging, that v14 could turn out to be Eve, the problem still resides in “But Eve will be saved.” What? Eve will be saved in the future? This makes no sense and cannot be biblicaly supported. At this point is where the comp makes Eve the rep of women. As Cheryl said, “which is taken care of by the indisputable remaining grammar that must go along with it.”
    Spam word: import
    Importing into the text, anyone? ;P

  195. And I forgot to say, that I can’t wait for your next post, Cheryl :)

  196. The tense of v14 and the grammar of v15 must be in harmony.

  197. The reason why “the woman of v14 really is Eve” cannot be is because the tense of v14 and the grammar of v15 MUST be in harmony.

  198. Hi Pinklight.
    I can appreciate the very real and important issues you are raising, but I’ll respond with some questions for whenever you (or if anyone else) get some time.

    1 Have you watched Cheryl’s DVD? Before Cheryl discovered the issue of the perfect tense in v14, did you believe that the “she” of v 15 had to be “the woman” of v14, and this was an insurmountable problem and so Cheryl’s exegesis on the DVD must be wrong? Do you now believe that this is so?
    2 Just hypothetically, imagine that Cheryl has not yet realized about the perfect tense in v14, and no one has thought of the idea that “the woman” of v14 may not be Eve. Your only options are the “Eve representing women” view for v15, so that “she” in v15 matches “the woman” in v14, or Cheryl’s view from the DVD, which would you choose?
    3 How do you explain Paul’s reasoning in v13,14 without referring to the deception of Eve?
    Thanks Pinklight

  199. 1 Have you watched Cheryl’s DVD? Before Cheryl discovered the issue of the perfect tense in v14, did you believe that the “she” of v 15 had to be “the woman” of v14, and this was an insurmountable problem and so Cheryl’s exegesis on the DVD must be wrong? Do you now believe that this is so?

    Yes, I watched her DVD at least twice and a while ago. No, after watching her DVD I did not believe that “she” of v15 had to be “the woman” of v14. I never noticed the connection that I didn’t make between v14 & 15, that I should have. I thought “the woman” was Eve, and “she” was the woman of vv 11&12. I didn’t know or even think about how”she” had to link back to v14.

    2 Just hypothetically, imagine that Cheryl has not yet realized about the perfect tense in v14, and no one has thought of the idea that “the woman” of v14 may not be Eve. Your only options are the “Eve representing women” view for v15, so that “she” in v15 matches “the woman” in v14, or Cheryl’s view from the DVD, which would you choose?

    If I didn’t understand that “she” has to connect back to v14’s “the woman” I would chose Cheryl’s view. In that case, “the woman” of v14 is Eve and “she” is the woman of vv11&12. In this case, Eve doesn’t have to be a rep which is forced into the text to make sense of out the singular “but she will be saved if…” because Paul just can’t be talking about one woman! lol

    3 How do you explain Paul’s reasoning in v13,14 without referring to the deception of Eve?

    Paul’s one long thought went something like this: I don’t allow a woman to teach, for Adam was formed first then Eve, but Adam was not deceived, but this woman having been deceived has fallen into sin, but she will be saved if they remain in faith, love and holiness. When I think of Paul’s thought, as I read it and approach v14 I would have expected him to say Eve in v14, but instead he says “the woman” or “this woman”. With that expectation in mind, since he was talking of Adam and Eve in the previous v13, I can see that Eve and this woman are similar because of their deception. (But without understanding Eve’s deception in Genesis apart from 1 Tim 2, it may not have been an expectation). So going along reading his thought, I naturaly expect Paul to have written in “Eve” in v14.

  200. V14 makes one think of Eve because it is linked back to v13 which speaks of Adam and Eve.

  201. Let a woman learn. I don’t allow a woman to teach a man, for Adam was formed first then Eve, but Adam was not deceived, but this woman having been deceived has fallen into sin, but she will be saved if they remain in faith, love and holiness. (My translation) :)

  202. Before Cheryl discovered the issue of the perfect tense in v14, did you believe that the “she” of v 15 had to be “the woman” of v14, and this was an insurmountable problem and so Cheryl’s exegesis on the DVD must be wrong? Do you now believe that this is so?

    Is it possible that “she” could by pass “the woman” of v14 and refer back to “a woman” of v11 & 12? Yes, if Paul’s thought went like this:
    Let a woman learn. I don’t allow a woman to teach a man, for Adam was formed first, then Eve, and Adam was not deceived, but Eve was deceived and was a sinner. But she will be saved if they remain in faith, love and holiness.
    In this case, the thought though doesn’t make sense, because we are left with wondering why the woman will be saved in the future. What did she do? I tried. lol
    How about this thought:
    Let a woman learn. I do not allow a woman to teach a man, for Adam was formed first then Eve, and Adam was not deceived, but Eve who was deceived fell into sin, but she will be saved if they continue in faith, love and holiness.
    It still doesn’t make sense.

  203. Let a woman learn. I do not allow a woman to teach a man, for Adam was formed first then Eve, and Adam was not deceived, but Eve having been deceived fell into sin, but she will be saved through the childbirth, if they continue in faith, love and holiness.

    In this case, the comp uses Eve as a rep.

    Here, I’ve written in v14 the same tense as v13. When Paul writes in v13 on Adam and Eve he is talking in the past tense, “for Adam WAS FORMED first, then Eve, but Adam WAS NOT deceived”, so if v14 was Eve he would have continued using the past tense. The point in this example is that it shows that v14 coulnd’t be speaking of Eve anyway.

  204. Hi pinklight. From your responses @200 to my questions 1 and 2, it seems to me that we are really thinking fairly similarly about a lot of things. It sounds like you can understand why I still see Cheryl’s 2006 view as a strong possibility if I am not sure yet about the implications of the perfect tense in v14.
    My experiences with comps who know a lot more Greek than me, has possibly made me a bit more hesitant to pursue that line of thinking than I need to be. I appreciate many of the points you, Cheryl and others have made that encourage me to learn more about the perfect tense, why Paul used it, how significant it is, and how it fits in with the rest of the passage.

  205. In discussing question 3 @200, 201 I can see you are considering the question but I am not sure that I am seeing an answer. Are you just thinking aloud or did I miss an answer somewhere?

  206. When discussing Cheryl’s 2006 view @203, you said
    “Is it possible that “she” could by pass “the woman” of v14 and refer back to “a woman” of v11 & 12?”
    “It still doesn’t make sense.”

    I have understood Cheryl’s 2006 view with v13,14 as a kind of parenthesis giving the reasons for v11,12. So Paul gives a prohibition to a woman, then gives the reason for this in v13,14. He then continues to discuss the woman in v15. Its only confusing because Paul happened to discuss a woman (Eve) in his reason. If he had of given some other reason with no woman in it, it would have been quite clear that “she” was referring back to v12. Of course Tim would have known these things and not been confused.
    I’m not sure that I really follow what your seeing that doesn’t make sense. Sorry.

  207. If I am understanding you correctly @204, you are saying another clue why v14 is not Eve is because Paul changes tense from Adam to the woman when speaking of their deception (or non-deception). If I have heard this before it hasn’t sunk in, so thanks for saying this. This means that there are clues before it (with the change in tense from Adam), clues in it (perfect tense), and clues after it (v15) all pointing to the woman not being Eve in v14b. This is all very interesting.

  208. I’m still struggling though with understanding Paul’s reasoning if Eve is not in v14b. It sounds like Paul is saying that there is something about Adam being formed first that meant he was not deceived. But this Ephesian woman is not like Adam because she is deceived.
    Paul’s emphasis seems to be in contrasting the Ephesian woman with Adam, rather than comparing her to Eve as we have usually understood it.

  209. Craig@205,

    Don’t lose sight of the fact that comps do not have an “air-tight” explanation for these verses. Most who wish to claim an absolute are the so called “plain reading” ones. And the scholarly few who do get into the details have nothing conclusive – yet, they wish to build an entire doctrine concerning half the church over what even the most repected scholars admit are some of the most difficult passages in the entire Bible!
    So, the question for your friends versed in Greek is ‘how can you argue that the subordination of women is a better interpretation of the scripture than treating women as your neighbour? If both are possible interpretations, why is the subordination of women a *better* interpretation?’

  210. “I’m still struggling though with understanding Paul’s reasoning if Eve is not in v14b. It sounds like Paul is saying that there is something about Adam being formed first that meant he was not deceived. But this Ephesian woman is not like Adam because she is deceived.”

    Craig, this is where I’m of the opinion that Paul is making a double reference. Gnostic beliefs had things mixed up about who was created first and who was deceived. So, it’s as if he were saying the woman Eve was not created first and she was the one deceived into sinning, not Adam. So, this woman is like Eve, a woman deceived into erroneous beliefs, but there is hope for her salvation if she and her husband continue in faith, love and holiness with self control.

    There may be a lot more hidden in that word authentein than we realize because of the things done in the Artemis/Diana temple by the temple priestesses. If this woman or some women had been trying to forcefully mix in some of the agnostic teachings with their husbands or other men, it would have been ugly and confusing. Unfortunately, we will never know. If Paul had put the details in the letter that woman may never have been redeemable as her reputation would have been shot forever and she likely would have rebelled. So hiding her sin was the most loving and merciful thing he could have done. That may well have saved many women like her as well.

  211. Hi Craig. I have just a brief comment after reviewing your discussion with pinklight. Paul is referencing Eve’s deception, but Eve is not the current actor who has been deceived. I don’t mean to suggest that Eve is completely out of the picture at the end of vs. 14, but only that Eve is the example for the contemporary situation.

    Now, as to some of your other questions.

    Even if the verbal aspect theory was correct and we couldn’t be sure about vs. 14, there is nothing in that theory that affects the grammar of vs. 15 where “she” is a singular woman whose salvation is in the future. So the vs. 15 woman still can’t be Eve and also can’t be all women of even a subgroup of women because singular is singular. So, punting on vs. 14 still doesn’t support a comp view of vs. 15.

    More importantly, the passage becomes more and more nonsensical the more “comp-ish” it becomes. The fact is that it makes perfect sense (at least to me) and flows smoothly all the way from vs 11-15 if vs. 14 and 15 say what we are saying they say.

    I generally opt for the simple reading of a passage if it makes sense. Regardless of verbal aspect theories and comp wishful thinking, the passage makes the most sense if “the woman” of vs. 14 is not Eve. It fits the plain text (Adam is named twice but Eve is not named in the last part of the verse), it fits the plain understanding of the perfect tense (whereas the VAT leaves us hanging without a clear interpretation), it matches up “the woman” with “she” in vs. 15 and maintains the integrity of a contemporary woman interpretation, it holds up Eve as an individual example instead of making her some strange and otherwise unexplained representative of all women, and it shows how Adam and Eve both support Paul’s general commentary on deception, false teaching, and salvation. The only reason this passage is so “confusing” is that the English interpretations are all over the map. But the plain reading with focus on the Greek is very clear. Why would we reject the plain reading in favor of inconclusive, incoherent interpretations? Unless, of course, we had an agenda other than seekign the truth that we wanted to promote.

  212. Craig – “I’m still struggling though with understanding Paul’s reasoning if Eve is not in v14b. It sounds like Paul is saying that there is something about Adam being formed first that meant he was not deceived. But this Ephesian woman is not like Adam because she is deceived.
    Paul’s emphasis seems to be in contrasting the Ephesian woman with Adam, rather than comparing her to Eve as we have usually understood it.”

    I think you are correct, and Cheryl has mentioned this before, that there is something about the first couple’s created order that made it so Adam was not deceived. I don’t think the “something” is important here. What is important is that Adam was not deceived while Eve was.

    But the comparison is still to Eve. It would have helped, I suppose, if Paul had said “but the woman, like Eve….” instead of just “but the woman….”. But it isn’t necessary. The entirety of vss. 13-14 make it read clear enough. Compare the two alternatives below, with extra biblical helping text in the brackets.

    For Adam was created first, and then Eve. And Adam was not deceived. But the woman [in the same manner as Eve] was deceived and has fallen into transgression.

    For Adam was created first, and then Eve. And Adam was not deceived. But the woman [who I have been discussing] was deceived and has fallen into transgression.

    I see no difference between the two. Both compare the Ephesian woman to Eve. Given the entirety of vss. 11-15, especially the singular “she” of vs. 15, and the fact that Paul was discussing a situation Timothy was already well aware of, can you envision that Timothy would have needed either of the bracketed alternatives in order to understand what Paul was talking about? Do we need either of them? I certainly don’t. The passage is very clear to me with the plain reading:

    For Adam was created first, and then Eve. And Adam was not deceived. But the woman was deceived and has fallen into transgression. Yet she will be saved through The Childbirth if…

    YET, even if “the woman” is Eve, it doesn’t change the overall meaning of the passage or its subject – a single Ephesian woman. let’s render the passage as if the Genesis portion was parenthetical (and referenced Eve directly).

    A woman should learn peacefully, in complete submission. For I do not permit a woman to teach or domineer the man, but to be at peace. (For Adam was formed first, and then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, But Eve, having been deceived, fell into transgression). Still, she will be saved through The Childbirth, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness.

    If we remove the parenthetical part, the passage reads smoothly:

    A woman should learn peacefully, in complete submission. For I do not permit a woman to teach or domineer the man, but to be at peace. Still, she will be saved through The Childbirth, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness.

    But does anything really change? “She” is still not Eve and still not all women, and still connects back to “a woman” from vs. 11. “They” still can’t be all women or all men, so probably are the couple (note that “the man” is the actual rendering in vs. 12, meaning a specific man, most likely her husband). All that a parenthetical rendering does is make the Genesis reference confusing. It leaves us asking “what was the point of that Adam and Eve thing” since there is no way that “the woman” and “she” can be the same person if “the woman” is Eve.

    This is the most important reason why we must reject such a rendering, because God is not the author of confusion and an inspired Paul, even in this personal letter, would not author gibberish.

  213. Craig,

    Hi pinklight. From your responses @200 to my questions 1 and 2, it seems to me that we are really thinking fairly similarly about a lot of things. It sounds like you can understand why I still see Cheryl’s 2006 view as a strong possibility if I am not sure yet about the implications of the perfect tense in v14.

    Yes, I think so, and yes, I can understand why you still see Cheryl’s 2006 view as a possibility when not sure of the implications of v14. I’m ALL for wanting to be sure about things that interest me…

    My experiences with comps who know a lot more Greek than me, has possibly made me a bit more hesitant to pursue that line of thinking than I need to be. I appreciate many of the points you, Cheryl and others have made that encourage me to learn more about the perfect tense, why Paul used it, how significant it is, and how it fits in with the rest of the passage.

    I don’t know Greek, I didn’t understand the tense of v14 for a long time, and I couldn’t “get it” and in part it was because it had to do with Greek which made me feel uneasy.

    @212
    gengwall,

    Even if the verbal aspect theory was correct and we couldn’t be sure about vs. 14, there is nothing in that theory that affects the grammar of vs. 15 where “she” is a singular woman whose salvation is in the future. So the vs. 15 woman still can’t be Eve and also can’t be all women of even a subgroup of women because singular is singular. So, punting on vs. 14 still doesn’t support a comp view of vs. 15.

    Yep! *thumb up* :)

  214. Craig,
    @206

    In discussing question 3 @200, 201 I can see you are considering the question but I am not sure that I am seeing an answer. Are you just thinking aloud or did I miss an answer somewhere?

    I was kinda thinking out loud…

    3 How do you explain Paul’s reasoning in v13,14 without referring to the deception of Eve?
    (A)For Adam was formed first, (B)then Eve. (A)And Adam was not deceived (B)but the woman…
    Here’s how I’d explain paul’s reasoning:
    Paul says “Adam was formed first” and connects that thought to “And Adam was not deceivd.” Next he says “then Eve” and connects that to “but the woman…”
    The reason why Eve was deceived is because of the things she did not learn as Adam had because he was created first and she was created after. What Paul is doing is connecting Eve being created after Adam to the woman’s deception and falling into sin, just as he connected Adam being created first to him not being deceived.
    And we know from Genesis that because Eve was created second, she was deceived because of the knowledge she lacked that Adam did not.

  215. Craig,
    @208

    If I am understanding you correctly @204, you are saying another clue why v14 is not Eve is because Paul changes tense from Adam to the woman when speaking of their deception (or non-deception). If I have heard this before it hasn’t sunk in, so thanks for saying this. This means that there are clues before it (with the change in tense from Adam), clues in it (perfect tense), and clues after it (v15) all pointing to the woman not being Eve in v14b. This is all very interesting.

    Yes, my point was that Paul changes tense from v13 to v14, and therefore couldn’t be speaking of Eve in v14 and why should he change tense if he’s talking about Eve? What he said on Adam was past tense. They are both dead.

  216. TL @211
    “Craig, this is where I’m of the opinion that Paul is making a double reference. Gnostic beliefs had things mixed up about who was created first and who was deceived. So, it’s as if he were saying the woman Eve was not created first and she was the one deceived into sinning, not Adam. So, this woman is like Eve, a woman deceived into erroneous beliefs, but there is hope for her salvation if she and her husband continue in faith, love and holiness with self control.”

    If we are trying to think about whether v14b could be about the Ephesian woman, rather than Eve, from the way you have expressed the view above, it would still suffer like the other views from the fact that part of it is about Eve’s deception, and Eve’s deception is not mentioned.
    One way to turn these thoughts to a solution for the problem I see would be to paraphrase it
    (For in contrast to what this Ephesian woman is teaching), Adam was actually the one who was formed first, and then Eve. And (in contrast to what this Ephesian woman is teaching)Adam was not deceived, but (rather than Adam whom she claims was deceived) this Ephesian woman is the one who is actually deceived and has come to be in the transgression.
    Understanding it like this does not mention any deception of Eve in order to complete the thought, and contrasts the non-deception of Adam with the deception of the Ephesian woman as Paul does.
    Its problem as I see it is that it depends on historical background material that may be impossible to be sure about.

    TL @211
    “There may be a lot more hidden in that word authentein than we realize because of the things done in the Artemis/Diana temple by the temple priestesses. If this woman or some women had been trying to forcefully mix in some of the agnostic teachings with their husbands or other men, it would have been ugly and confusing.”

    This is the sort of thing I was wondering about a few days ago, and whether this may be the context of 11-15 and the whole of ch2.

  217. Gengwall @212
    “Even if the verbal aspect theory was correct ……the vs. 15 woman still can’t be Eve and also can’t be all women ”

    Agreed

    Gengwall@212

    “I generally opt for the simple reading of a passage if it makes sense. Regardless of verbal aspect theories and comp wishful thinking, the passage makes the most sense if “the woman” of vs. 14 is not Eve. It fits the plain text (Adam is named twice but Eve is not named in the last part of the verse), it fits the plain understanding of the perfect tense (whereas the VAT leaves us hanging without a clear interpretation), it matches up “the woman” with “she” in vs. 15 and maintains the integrity of a contemporary woman interpretation, it holds up Eve as an individual example instead of making her some strange and otherwise unexplained representative of all women, and it shows how Adam and Eve both support Paul’s general commentary on deception, false teaching, and salvation. The only reason this passage is so “confusing” is that the English interpretations are all over the map. But the plain reading with focus on the Greek is very clear. Why would we reject the plain reading in favor of inconclusive, incoherent interpretations? Unless, of course, we had an agenda other than seekign the truth that we wanted to promote.”

    A good summary of your view. Thanks.

    “it holds up Eve as an individual example”
    “it shows how Adam and Eve both support Paul’s general commentary on deception”

    It only does these with some assumptions unfortunately. Technically, all Paul tells us about Eve is that she was formed after Adam – that’s all.

  218. Gengwall @213

    “What is important is that Adam was not deceived while Eve was.”

    This is why it would have been clearer if he actually said this.

    “It would have helped, I suppose, if Paul had said “but the woman, like Eve….” instead of just “but the woman….”.

    Exactly. I agree with you. If Paul actually had said this, then it would make good sense to me without having to assume, or add bits to fill in the detail.

    “For Adam was created first, and then Eve. And Adam was not deceived. But the woman [in the same manner as Eve] was deceived and has fallen into transgression.
    For Adam was created first, and then Eve. And Adam was not deceived. But the woman [who I have been discussing] was deceived and has fallen into transgression.
    I see no difference between the two.”

    I would like to be able to agree, but to me the first bracketed alternative seems to express your view more clearly to me.

  219. As I see it, we argue from v13,14 that Paul is saying
    1 Eve was deceived
    2 The Ephesian woman is deceived
    3 The Ephesian woman is just like Eve
    4 (The Ephesian man is like Adam in not doing anything to help- but that is another subject)

    Cheryl’s 2006 view has the advantage that it mentions number 1, Eve’s deception, but has the disadvantage that it doesn’t say numbers 2 and 3, that the Ephesian woman is deceived, just like Eve. We have to assume these, but they are consistent with the rest of the passage.
    Cheryl’s 2011 view has the advantage that it mentions number 2, the Ephesian woman’s deception but has the disadvantage that it doesn’t say numbers 1 and 3, that Eve was deceived and the Ephesian woman is just like Eve. We have to assume these, but they are consistent with the rest of the passage.
    It seems that every view (whether comp or egal) that I have looked into has to make some assumptions and fill in some missing details. It seems a matter of prayerfully determining which view handles the available data in the best way, while still leaving some assumptions that are reasonable to accept as plausible. At this stage, no comp view comes close, but there are several egal views which still seem possibilities to me.
    It would be very nice (just to make life easier for me of course :) ) if Paul had clearly said
    “but the woman, like Eve….” instead of just “but the woman….”. Then we would have numbers 1,2,3 all clearly stated! Oh well……..

  220. Perhaps there was a papyri shortage at the time and so he left out bits that could be assumed? :)

  221. “Perhaps there was a papyri shortage at the time and so he left out bits that could be assumed? :)

    Craig,
    LOL – Is it past your bedtime? 😉

  222. Pinklight @215

    Paul says “Adam was formed first” and connects that thought to “And Adam was not deceived.” Next he says “then Eve” and connects that to “but the woman…”
    The reason why Eve was deceived is because of the things she did not learn as Adam had because he was created first and she was created after. What Paul is doing is connecting Eve being created after Adam to the woman’s deception and falling into sin, just as he connected Adam being created first to him not being deceived.
    And we know from Genesis that because Eve was created second, she was deceived because of the knowledge she lacked that Adam did not.

    You seem to be connecting Adam being created first to Adam himself not being deceived.
    If we follow the pattern, then Eve being created second would connect with Eve herself being deceived, rather than the Ephesian woman.
    If you connect Eve being created after Adam, with the Ephesian woman’s deception, then wouldn’t you have to connect Adam being created first with the Ephesian man’s deception, not Adam?
    1a)Adam first b)Adam not deceived c) Illustrates Ephesian man
    2a)Eve second b) Eve deceived c) Illustrates Ephesian woman
    To connect 1a with 1b, and 2a with 2c misses 2b.

    As I say, there seems to be a bit left out of the puzzle if Eve is not in v14b, but it can be filled in with the quote from Gengwall “but the woman, like Eve….” instead of just “but the woman….”.

    But I may not be following what you are trying to say?

  223. Hi Elaine,

    “Craig,
    LOL – Is it past your bedtime? 😉 ”

    It is actually. Good night everyone. zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

  224. ““but the woman, like Eve….” instead of just “but the woman….”. Then we would have numbers 1,2,3 all clearly stated! Oh well……..”

    my guess is that in Paul’s mind he did just that, but in Hebrew/Greek thinking format, not English. :) When Paul gave Adam and Eve as a reason, he stated two things 1) Adam came first and wasn’t deceived 2) the woman was deceived. This is why I’m thinking that perhaps the woman in question may have been teaching some gnostic misinformation maybe even claiming that Adam was deceived or that the man she was teaching was deceived. So Paul tells Timothy she needs to learn and not teach or seek to take authority over some person, because the truth of the matter was 1 & 2, implying that she was like Eve. But we have no way of knowing exactly what Paul was referencing. We have to stick with what is clear.

    What is clear is that this was a particular woman who needed to learn and stop teaching and wresting authority from another. The mention of Adam and Eve is confusing without all the facts yet it does relate to the first chapter talking about people want to be teachers but not really understanding Scripture. And finally if this woman would simply seek the basics of faith, love and holiness (with her husband?) then she would be saved through the childbearing (Jesus).

    Trying to make much more of it than that, seems to grate with the rest of Scripture and not fit.

  225. “It only does these with some assumptions unfortunately. Technically, all Paul tells us about Eve is that she was formed after Adam – that’s all.”

    I disagree. I think Paul gives us enough to make the Eve-Ephesian woman connection. Let’s say we know the Ephesian woman’s name – we’ll call her Jane. Then, vss. 13-14 could have been written:

    For Adam was created first and then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but Jane, having been deceived has fallen into transgression.

    If I read that, I have no problem seeing the connection between Jane and Eve. Paul has simply substituted Jane for Eve in his second comparison, but Eve is still in the picture because of her inclusion in the first and the knowledge we have that she was deceived. Jane is like Eve. I don’t have to assume anything to come to that conclusion. (Unless you believe it is an assumption that Eve was deceived.)

    Jane is “the woman”; “the woman” is Jane. The two are interchangeable. So I don’t need either of my prior parenthetical “helps” to come to the view I hold. Nor do I need to make any assumptions about Eve or read Eve into the second part of vs. 14. Paul brings up Eve for a reason. The reason becomes clear at “the woman…”.

  226. For Adam was created first and then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but Jane, having been deceived has fallen into transgression.

    If I read that, I have no problem seeing the connection between Jane and Eve. Paul has simply substituted Jane for Eve in his second comparison, but Eve is still in the picture because of her inclusion in the first and the knowledge we have that she was deceived. Jane is like Eve. I don’t have to assume anything to come to that conclusion. (Unless you believe it is an assumption that Eve was deceived.)

    Awesome, gengwall! :) The way you’ve explained this by giving the unnamed woman a name, makes it very clear! :)

  227. “You seem to be connecting Adam being created first to Adam himself not being deceived.”

    Adam actually saw some of the creating (Garden planted, animals, etc) and did name the animals. He did have more first hand knowledge through experience with God. What would the reason be that Adam was NOT deceived? Scripture says he sinned willfully and knowingly.

    The Ephesian woman could have a similar problem in her culture of not being able to read, her only social interaction outside her family, the Temple of Artemis, etc. This is why she needed to “learn” in submission.

  228. If you connect Eve being created after Adam, with the Ephesian woman’s deception, then wouldn’t you have to connect Adam being created first with the Ephesian man’s deception, not Adam?

    Craig,
    Except that the subject and focus is not about the man, but the woman who needs to learn, and quitely, and not dominate, not teach, and who is deceived and who will be saved. The passage is about her, and not the man she is teaching false things to. Though the man she is teaching isn’t deceived which is why he can help her in salvation – “But she will be saved if they continue…” Besides, Paul connected Adam to Adam but Eve to the Ephesian woman. And that is how it looks when one follows his thought process.

  229. 4 (The Ephesian man is like Adam in not doing anything to help- but that is another subject)

    I think he’s being dominated or something like it, but the woman is to stop teaching and usurping “authority”, or something like that… so he cannot be compared to Adam in the same way that the Ephesian woman can be compared to Eve. Eve did not treat Adam in the same way that this woman is treating “a man” (or ‘the man”).

  230. Craig,

    You seem to be connecting Adam being created first to Adam himself not being deceived.
    If we follow the pattern, then Eve being created second would connect with Eve herself being deceived, rather than the Ephesian woman.

    The subject and focus is about the woman, not Eve though and that’s why this doesn’t work either.

  231. 4 (The Ephesian man is like Adam in not doing anything to help- but that is another subject)

    Craig,
    So because the woman is not allowed to “authentein” the man and because he can help her in her salvation, I don’t think that like Adam he “was not doing anything to help.” He was being dominated unlike Adam which changes everything – and I should know… 😉
    So, I think the only comparison between him and Adam would be that he knew better than the woman did (just as Eve did not know better), because the woman is the one who needs to learn and not the man, but which is another reason why Adam and Eve’s creation order and what it resulted in, is a good example of this Ephesian woman and man (or couple), that is, one is learned and one is not and deception is the result for the one who lacks knowledge.

  232. My apologies to those who are sick of my illustrations.

    My friend Barney and I are talking about a mutual friend Jane who is confused about how rocks are formed and needs to learn.
    Barney tells me about a night at his place a few years ago where he had an expert on rock formation give a talk on how it all happens.
    He said that Fred listened to the whole talk. Wilma arrived late. Fred knew everything about rocks, but Jane is still confused.

    1 My first reaction would be “huh? Don’t you mean Wilma rather than Jane?
    2 If Barney assured me he definitely meant Jane, I would think to myself “What on earth do you mean by that Barney, and why did you say it that way?
    3 Then as I thought about it, I could probably work out that Wilma would have been confused, because she arrived late. That would be a reasonable conclusion, especially if I had heard this from Barney’s wife Betty as well.
    4 I could possibly also figure out that Barney is making a connection between Wilma being confused and Jane being confused.
    5 So I could probably work it all out, but I think you others must be a bit smarter than me, because I would still have liked a few more words for extra clarity. :)

    So do I think it is possible that v14b is about the Ephesian woman? Yes, definitely, especially in light of the other evidence from the passage, but it still doesn’t seem to me to be a particularly natural way for Paul to talk. I think Gengwall’s explanation may well be the best possible (if 14b is definitely not about Eve, and if Paul is not referring to some local Gnostic heresies about Adam and Eve). So thank you.

  233. I am planning to write an email along these lines to one of my comp friends at Theological College. He may also be able to ask his Greek lecturer. Any thoughts?

    1 Tim 2:14b
    Just from the normal way it reads in Greek, would you say it is reasonable to conclude that “the woman” refers to someone who is
    1 Definitely alive at the time of writing
    2 Most likely alive but could possibly be dead
    3 Most likely dead but could possibly be alive
    4 Definitely dead
    5 Could be either alive or dead. Impossible to tell. Greek tenses have no bearing on the issue.
    Why?

  234. Hi Craig. It is a nice illustration but I think it errs on three points: it focuses on the created order and assumes the topic (rocks) is constant. Paul is not saying that Eve and the woman are deceived about the same thing, he is simply saying they are deceived (really, ignorant in your illustration). And the main issues isn’t created order between the two couples. At best, that is secondary. And finally, we are not ignorant about Eve’s deception. It is a know elemnet to the story that does not need repeating.

    At any rate, none of that matters. The point isn’t whether or not your illustration is confusing, it only matters if the passage is confusing. Do you find the passage confusing if we put a name in the place of “the woman”? I sure don’t.

    But let me see if I can rework your illustration so that it parallels the passage a little more closely.

    My friend Barney and I are talking about a mutual friend Jane who is telling lies about rocks based on some internet course she took. Jane really needs to get some training before she shoots her mouth off. She is even influencing her husband, who should know better since he has some geology training. What’s worse, any time he even mentions rocks she berates him. She really needs to chill out.

    Barney reminds me about another couple who are very familiar to us, saying maybe their situation can shed some light on how to both look at and handle Jane.

    Here is the background – Barney and I know of a couple named Fred and Wilma. They got themselves in a little trouble a few years back. Seems Wilma got tricked into an illegal land deal by a slick con man. Fred went along with the deal even though he new he was breaking the law. Poor Wilma, not knowing anything about real estate, didn’t have any idea that what she was doing was wrong. In the eyes of the law she was just as guilty as Fred, but because of her ignorance, she received leniency from the court. Fred, on the other hand, got the book thrown at him.

    Now Barney lets me in on a little insight that had not occured to me. Seems Fred took a real estate class before he was married to Wilma. That’s why he knew that the land deal was illegal while Wilma was clueless..

    Anyway, Jane doesn’t know squat about rocks because that internet course was crap. As a result, she has found herself in this position where she is spreading these lies.

    OK – that’s the story with a lot of exposition. Now let me see if I can paraphrase it along the lines of the passage. Remember that the background paragraph on Fred and Wilma is well know to Barney and me. Barney speaks:

    Jane needs to chill out and submit herself to some legitimate geology teaching. I would not permit Jane to tell these lies about rocks to her husband and she certainly shouldn’t treat him abusively like she does. She really needs to chill. Remember Fred and Wilma. Fred took a real estate class before the were married, and Fred knew fully well that that land deal was against the law. But Jane was hoodwinked by that internet course. Still, she can straighten out by going to http://www.Jesusknowsrocks.com if they proceed with humility, mutual love, and a good DSL connection.

    Make sense?

  235. A slight correction to my paraphrase. And oh, BTW, don’t click the link that automatically gets generated. I will change it slightly to hopefully prevent the link.

    Jane needs to chill out and submit herself to some legitimate geology teaching. I would not permit Jane to tell these lies about rocks to her husband and she certainly shouldn’t treat him abusively like she does. She really needs to chill. Remember Fred and Wilma. Fred took a real estate class before they were married, and Fred knew full well that that land deal was against the law. But Jane was hoodwinked by that internet course and has become this lying harpy. Still, she can straighten out by going to vvv.Jesusknowsrocks.com as long as they proceed with humility, mutual love, and a good DSL connection.

  236. Now I admit that is a little clumsy. But I don’t think it is utterly confusing. A person may have to read it twice because the switch to Jane is abrupt. But still….

    And remember that we are trying to express Greek thought in English. I am not a Greek speaker, especially ancient Greek. It may be that such a transition is much less clumsy to a Greek speaker. At any rate, I don’t agree that “it still doesn’t seem to me to be a particularly natural way for Paul to talk”. Who are we to say what a natural way for Paul to talk is?

  237. Now I admit that is a little clumsy. But I don’t think it is utterly confusing. A person may have to read it twice because the switch to Jane is abrupt. But still….

    Great stuff gengwall! I was just trying to illustrate one small point of the passage to illustrate that the “switch to Jane is abrupt”, “sounds clumsy in English”, but is not “utterly confusing”. You have dealt with the whole passage and created a whole new Flintstones movie! :)
    It seems like you can understand the points that I am making.
    I can also agree with your point that even though “it still doesn’t seem to me to be a particularly natural way for Paul to talk”, “who am to say what a natural way for Paul to talk is”, because it “may be much less clumsy to a Greek speaker”.
    I have seen these points as a slight weakness to Cheryl’s 2011 view for a while now. I think you have faced that weakness really well and come up with some really great points and illustrations to help our understanding. At the moment I see it as a strong possibility, and one day I may be totally convinced that this is the true and only possible view of the passage. Either way, you have helped my understanding of this view and equipped me much better to be able to convey this meaning to others. Thanks heaps.

  238. Just wondering if the “like Eve” comment that would help to clarify things for me is actually there in a slightly cryptic way.
    In 14b, if Paul was referring to the Ephesian woman but wishing to preserve her anonymity he would naturally call her “the woman”.
    If he was referring to Eve in v14b you would think he would naturally call her “Eve” in v14b as well, like he called Adam “Adam” in both v13, and 14. It seems strange that he would call her “the woman” after he has just called her “Eve”. So this information is a positive for the view that v14b is not about Eve.
    But Eve is called “the woman” in Genesis.
    So could Paul be referring to the Ephesian woman in 14b, but because he has just mentioned Eve in v13, and Eve was also called “the woman” in Gen, the term “the woman” would remind Tim of Eve as well, and be like saying “like Eve”?
    So this would back up the Cheryl/Gengwall view.
    Can anyone follow what I am trying to say? Thoughts?

  239. Craig, liked what you said in #239. :)

  240. Craig and gengwall,
    You really “rock”!

    I would jump in here but no time to even think. I am up to my eye balls in alligators (bookkeeping and other high priority things) and I will continue to work on my new post as soon as I get a spare moment. There are so many opportunities to bring out a better way to say things with such good comments coming onto my blog.

    Thanks all you WIM followers, you make this a great place to hang around!
    Talk to you guys soon.

  241. I am planning to write an email something along these lines to one of my comp friends at Theological College to clarify what he thinks. He may also be able to ask his Greek lecturer. Does this sound a reasonable way to put the question?

    From the normal way 1 Tim 2:14b reads in Greek, would you say it is reasonable to conclude that “the woman” refers to someone who is
    1 Definitely alive at the time of writing
    2 Probably alive but could possibly be dead
    3 Probably dead but could possibly be alive
    4 Definitely dead
    5 Either alive or dead. Impossible to tell. Greek tenses have no bearing on the issue.

    If you are able to give reasons for your answer, it would be very helpful. Thanks.

  242. Thanks Cheryl for your encouragement @241. :)

  243. Been a rough two days…! But I’m glad to be able to get back here with ya’ll!

  244. Sorry about your rough couple of days pinklight. May God be with you and all those involved, and be your strength and encouragement.

  245. And remember that we are trying to express Greek thought in English. I am not a Greek speaker, especially ancient Greek. It may be that such a transition is much less clumsy to a Greek speaker. At any rate, I don’t agree that “it still doesn’t seem to me to be a particularly natural way for Paul to talk”. Who are we to say what a natural way for Paul to talk is?

    Just thinking some more about a similar sort of thing.
    I’ve got a fairly Maths/Science type brain- not so much English/Arty.
    Could it be true I wonder, that the English/Arty ones could see the way Paul has expressed this and exclaim, “how brilliant, how profound! To so unexpectedly refer to Jane, when we were expecting a comment about Eve, and yet to allude back to Eve in her deception when calling Jane ‘the woman’ – amazing.”
    I remember thinking at times at school during English – while others were commenting “how clever”, I was thinking ”I’m lost. I wish the author could have just spoken a bit more plainly so that I could understand”. I didn’t appreciate the brilliance back then. Perhaps history is repeating itself! :)
    It encourages me that even Peter found Paul a bit hard to follow sometimes 2 Pet 3:16.

  246. Thank you Craig! That made me feel really good :)

  247. I think that this post on I Tim. 2: http://www.challies.com/bible/saved-through-childbearing#more could use some challenging from the thoughtful people who discuss issues here. :-)

  248. I “have done” (perfect tense :) ) a bit of “homework” on the perfect tense in Greek. I have found that the definitions generally match what Gengwall said @182,
    “The perfect tense expresses perfective action. Perfective action involves a present state which has resulted from a past action. The present state is a continuing state; the past action is a completed action.”

    For example
    http://www.preceptaustin.org/new_page_40.htm
    “In short, the perfect tense is very expressive for it speaks of an action that took place in the past, which was completed in past time, and existence of its finished results. For instance one might say “I have closed the door” which speaks of a past completed action. But the implication is that as a result the door is still closed. Thus, the entire meaning is, “I have closed the door and it is closed at present.”

    http://www.bcbsr.com/greek/gtense.html
    “The force of the perfect indicative is simply that it describes an event that, completed in the past, has results existing in the present time (i.e., in relation to the time of the speaker).”

    J.W. Wenham – The Elements of NT Greek
    “The perfect represents a present state resulting from a past action”

    Ward Powers -Learn To Read the Greek NT
    “Perfective or accomplished action where the present state or present consequences of a past action are being stressed; the meaning of the perfect is ‘I am in the position of having done’.

    This leaves me in no doubt that with the understanding of the traditional Greek text books “the woman” of v14b would have to be alive at the time of writing.

  249. I was wondering if anyone may be able to help me with an example from everyday English where a statement about “a woman” sounds generic, (like 1 Tim 2:11,12) but a following statement about “the woman” and “she” (like 1 Tim 2:14,15) clarifies that a particular woman is being referred to and the first statement is not generic.
    As there is no indefinite article (”a”) in Greek, and v11 just begins with “Woman ….”, my daughter suggested that the woman’s actual name may have been “woman” :) .

  250. Craig,
    I like the way your daughter thinks “outside the box”.

  251. Craig said: “I was wondering if anyone may be able to help me with an example from everyday English where a statement about “a woman” sounds generic, (like 1 Tim 2:11,12) but a following statement about “the woman” and “she” (like 1 Tim 2:14,15) clarifies that a particular woman is being referred to and the first statement is not generic.”

    Craig, one example that comes to mind would the case of a principal of a school explaining to a teacher how he might deal with one specific student (with an implication that any student in this specific situation would be subject to the same treatment; ie., that he is not singling this student out, but this student is the only one in this particular situation, so the action is being applied specifically to this one student).

    Something like: “I do not permit a student to sell personal items to another student on school property The student should keep items she wishes to sell in her backpack and not make her transaction with the boy until they are off campus after school hours.”

  252. The issue I would have, then, is that if I were reading a letter from the principal to this teacher, I would expect the principal to make some transitionary phrase such as, “Now, with regards to the student you wrote me about,” and not just tack it onto the end of a general section about all students, with no transitionary words. That’s where my difficulty with this interpretation comes in, as you all know by now. 😉

  253. pinklight,
    I hope your week goes well. Thanks for all the things you have said. Wish I could keep up with all the comments, but I am trying to work them into my next post.

    Craig,
    I will be interested to see what your friend says to your email and to the grammar response I will be giving in my next post. Love your daughter’s suggestion that her name is “Woman”!

    Kristen,
    I am trying hard to put the information into the next post with you in mind. I hope it gives you lots to think about and to realize why I cannot accept either the comp argument or the argument of many egals on the passage.

  254. Melissa,

    I have posted on the Challies site under the username “KR Wordgazer.” Thanks for the link.

  255. Cheryl,

    Again, take your time; I was not meaning to push you. I would dearly love to be able to present your reading as the best reading of this text; but I need to be able to answer the critics. :)

  256. Craig #239
    You said:

    So could Paul be referring to the Ephesian woman in 14b, but because he has just mentioned Eve in v13, and Eve was also called “the woman” in Gen, the term “the woman” would remind Tim of Eve as well, and be like saying “like Eve”?

    Yes, I believe so. It is an outline of the original. Paul deliberately used the term “the woman” when it was more natural to say “Eve” with Adam. But if Eve is the outline (exact image) of the woman in Ephesus, then Paul could both link her to Eve while still referring back to the problem woman.

  257. Kristen,
    You have pushed in a good way 😉 This is what I need just like I need Craig to push me. The areas where you need more info or need the info said in a different way that will connect the dots for you is very important. It is an act of love towards you and Craig and the others that I am working hard to connect all of your dots. Hopefully this will give more help where you need it.
    Much love,
    Cheryl

  258. Craig,
    You said:

    This leaves me in no doubt that with the understanding of the traditional Greek text books “the woman” of v14b would have to be alive at the time of writing.

    Good job! I can see that you did your homework. My next post will close the door on the verbal aspect theory so you can see why there is no other way (including the verbal aspect theory) that changes the traditional grammar view. The refutation is very similar to the work that I had to do years ago when the JW’s used the same aspect to try to deny the Deity of Jesus. The conditions surrounding the differing view were not met as they are limited in scope and do not apply. More in a bit when I finish my article.

  259. Craig,
    You said:

    As there is no indefinite article (”a”) in Greek, and v11 just begins with “Woman ….”, my daughter suggested that the woman’s actual name may have been “woman” :)

    You have pointed out the difficulty in that Greek is not completely like English because there is no indefinite article.

  260. I’d like to try and clarify something please if possible.
    Kristen said @252

    Craig, one example that comes to mind would the case of a principal of a school explaining to a teacher how he might deal with one specific student (with an implication that any student in this specific situation would be subject to the same treatment; ie., that he is not singling this student out, but this student is the only one in this particular situation, so the action is being applied specifically to this one student).
    Something like: “I do not permit a student to sell personal items to another student on school property The student should keep items she wishes to sell in her backpack and not make her transaction with the boy until they are off campus after school hours.”

    Thanks very much for this Kristen. It gives me a better idea of how you see that the language could work. I think this seems very similar to an example I gave 10 days ago @163, when I said,

    v11,12 sound like a general comment, but v15 indicates that Paul has a particular woman and man in mind.?
    A school principal writes to a teacher, “a girl needs to learn quietly. I do not permit a girl to punch a boy. But she can remain in the class, if they continue to behave appropriately”.
    It sounds like he is stating a general principle, but his conclusion indicates that he has a particular girl and boy in mind.

    After the last 10 days, with more discussion about v14b, I am happier to now give as an example
    A school principal writes to a teacher, “a girl needs to learn quietly. I do not permit a girl to punch a boy. The girl has become very naughty. But she can remain in the class, if they continue to behave appropriately”
    When I used this example before, Cheryl @171 correctly pointed out that

    remaining in the class is not akin to salvation being dependent on any boy who is being punched.

    I am simply using this example, and I think Kristen’s example is similar, to try and better understand how the language is working here, not to understand the meaning of other things in the passage.

    I am wondering whether these examples properly express what Cheryl, gengwall, and pinklight (and others who seem quite convinced of Cheryl’s 2011 view) are saying or not.

    There seems to me to be a slight difference between the principal saying to the teacher
    1 “Jane needs to learn quietly. I do not permit Jane to punch Tarzan. Jane has become very naughty. But she can remain in the class, if they continue to behave appropriately” and
    2 “a girl needs to learn quietly. I do not permit a girl to punch a boy. The girl has become very naughty. But she can remain in the class, if they continue to behave appropriately”.
    In 1 The whole passage is very obviously about Jane and Tarzan. It does not sound anything like any general principle is being given.
    In 2, as I stated above, “it sounds like he is stating a general principle, but as he continues, it becomes clear that he has a particular girl and boy in mind.” This girl and boy are the ones known to the principal and teacher, and are the ones who are presently involved, but the principal is writing a bit more generally at first so that the teacher is equipped to handle any similar situation that may arise. Or as Kristen put it, he is dealing “with one specific student (with an implication that any student in this specific situation would be subject to the same treatment; ie., that he is not singling this student out, but this student is the only one in this particular situation, so the action is being applied specifically to this one student).
    So, is Cheryl’s view more similar to 1, or 2, above? If it is more like 1, can you think of an English equivalent, or is it difficult because English is different to Greek? If it is 2, are you OK with this example, or would you want to improve it? I hope my question makes sense. Thanks

  261. Kristen @253

    The issue I would have, then, is that if I were reading a letter from the principal to this teacher, I would expect the principal to make some transitionary phrase such as, “Now, with regards to the student you wrote me about,” and not just tack it onto the end of a general section about all students, with no transitionary words. That’s where my difficulty with this interpretation comes in, as you all know by now. 😉

    I think this is an excellent question and I am looking forward to more discussion on it. Thanks Kristen for raising it, and thanks Cheryl for all your hard work.

  262. Just continuing on from 261. If the principal wanted to say 1 above (and not 2), but not mention Jane and Tarzan’s names, instead of writing
    “a girl needs to learn quietly. I do not permit a girl to punch a boy. The girl has become very naughty. But she can remain in the class, if they continue to behave appropriately”, wouldn’t he have written something like,
    “the girl needs to learn quietly. I do not permit her to punch a boy. She has become very naughty. But she can remain in the class, if they continue to behave appropriately”.
    In other passages in the bible that I know of (eg John 4, 1 Cor 5, 2 Cor 12) that speak of “woman” or “man” and refer to an individual, these other passages still sound like an individual is being referred to when translated into English as “a woman” or “a man”. 1 Tim 2 when translated into English doesn’t sound quite right if this was what Paul was really meaning. Any thoughts?
    Just thought I would get these questions out before your next post Cheryl in case they are helpful for things you may want to write about.

  263. Cheryl @254

    Craig,
    I will be interested to see what your friend says to your email>/blockquote>

    I have a reply now from my friend about verbal aspect theory and v14b, but he wants to check its accuracy with others before I pass it on to you. I will pass it on when he gives me the OK.

  264. I am very unskilled at this, but in my amateur way, I looked up all twelve of Paul’s references to “has become” v14b (“genonen” Verb: Third Person Perfect Active Indicative Singular). As far as I can see, all of them are consistent with what the traditional Greek text books say and back up your view Cheryl. All of them refer to something he, she or it “has become” and “still is” at the time of writing. 1 Tim 2:14b would be the odd one out if it meant something different to this.

  265. I have just posted the next article on this issue here http://strivetoenter.com/wim/2011/06/25/specific-or-general-woman/

    If we could move over to that post to continue comments as I am going to close the comments here to make sure that we do not go over the limit and lose the comments on this post as they tend to disappear when we get close to the 300+ comment level.