Hi there my friend, it’s time for our cuppa so let’s grab our mugs & get comfy!
As we have a very important topic to cover today.
Have you noticed that when things are taken out of context huge misunderstandings happen.
To the extent where whole movements can be built upon these out of context beliefs.
Leading to an abuse of power, control & ultimately an oppression occurring.
And I’m not talking about state politics here.
A concerning movement
Over the last several years I have been aware of a growing movement that has its foundation in taking God’s word completely out of context.
And it’s very disturbing in its teachings, practice & rate of acceptance across the church, globally.
This movement bases its teaching on the following verse written by Paul to Timothy in around 61-63 AD;
“…I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet.”
1 Timothy 2:12
Let’s take a good look at this verse in it’s historical context.
And it’s biblical meaning for the present day.
The Original Context
It was a letter from Paul to Timothy.
Paul was addressing several serious problems Timothy was experiencing in the church at Ephesus.
These issues included;
- False teaching, had crept into the church & was a major problem in Ephesus (1Tim 1:3-8). Mostly, coming from the Artemis cult, a pervasive cult in that city which Paul had come up against in Acts19:23-41. And also false teachings from an early form of Gnosticism.
- It appears particular women of the church were blending the beliefs of the ‘goddess of childbirth’ Artemis [aka Diana] with Christianity.
- Thus Paul’s statement in 1Tim 2: 15. Assuring these women that it is their faith in God the Father through Jesus who will keep them safe through childbirth not a false deity.
The message here is women shouldn’t dominate men, nor should men dominate women!
- And just because these particular women in Ephesus were teaching false doctrine and needed to learn the truth of the Gospel humbly. Didn’t mean other women weren’t active in ministry within that same fellowship & elsewhere.
- We have the example of Priscilla in that church with Aquila pulling Apollos to one side & teaching him in the Gospel of Jesus in Acts18:24-28
- And there were also missionaries with Paul, who were women, Euodia & Syntyche in Phil 4: 2-3.
- And contrary to early Gnostic ideas, that believed Eve didn’t sin by taking the fruit from the tree of good & evil but did good by seeking ‘knowledge’. Paul points out that Eve indeed was deceived (with Adam) in 1Tim 2: 14.
Thus the context of the above verse 1 Timothy 2-12
It was not to subjugate women under men, it was not to keep all women in the Church from having a voice in Christian fellowship.
For this would have gone against Jesus’ teaching who gives women a very important role in His Kingdom.
And also would have gone against God’s Word in Joel 2:28 where; ‘your sons & daughters will prophesy (give messages)’ which we looked at last week in Dreams, may be more important then you think!
So what does this verse mean for us today?
Paul was addressing serious issues within the Church at Ephesus.
He was not saying that women should not teach, give messages, pray, sing or partake in fellowship.
He was reasserting that everything in a Christian fellowship needs to be done in an orderly fashion for the sake of the Gospel.
And that the message of the good news of Salvation through Jesus’ sacrifice, resurrection & ascension is paramount in it’s purety.
Without being tainted by false doctrines, teachings & practices that these women in Ephesus were bringing into the fellowship at that time.
And this letter remains a warning for us today, to be aware that false doctrines & teachings can creep into any fellowship.
So my dear sisters, know that you are very precious in God’s sight!
As His daughters we are joint heirs in the Kingdom of God as stated in Romans 8: 16-17.
And if He has given you a ministry, testimony or message to share, then carry it out with all humility, gentleness & love through the guidance & direction of His Holy Spirit.
Until next time,
You’re most welcome to join me in The Reading Nook
© 2022, Jennifer M. Ross, teawithjennifer.blog All Rights Reserved. Photo by Kampus Production on Pexels.com