No Girls Allowed?

I’m going to cover a verse that seems very weird for Paul to say in light of all the other passages.

1 Timothy 2:11-15:

Paul is going for the jugular here. He doesn’t waste time. I want to go ahead and attack something that I think is heretical for a Christian to think. It has to do with the salvation of women. I don’t think everyone assumes this, but watch out if you do.

The assumption is that women are simply saved through bearing children. It’s easy when you consider the text literally and alone. The problem is that it goes against the scriptural notion of salvation. This assumption ends up saying that men are saved by the Birth, Death, and Resurrection of Christ and that women are saved by bearing children. If such a salvation is the truth, then God has failed humanity and not kept his promise. And I refuse to believe that.

With that said, what can we see in the text?

Paul can sometimes be translated here as not referring to birthing in general, but referring to the one Birthing that gave us the Messiah whose salvation is also offered to men. I think for the sake of keeping salvation out of the realm of heresy, we need to apply this interpretation for now until we get a better one.

As for the Women being over Men. This application still has a sense of ambiguity. There may have been a situation of women expressing themselves over men and needed to be brought back to a sense of equality with men. It may have been Paul saying that they needed to respect the social boundaries. Paul may have also been saying that women needed to under men. There are multiple ways to look at this verse, so using this verse actually not a very good gauge for deciding what a ministry will look like.

Another way this verse can be applied is that it is much like a mother giving advice to a kid in college. A certain kid gets sick and mom writes, emails, texts, or just calls to tell the kid what he should do. It’s not that the kid will die if he doesn’t do what the mom says, but the mom is giving him some advice about what she would do in that situation, which is the element that seems to surround the personal letters.

The point of all this is that 1) we should take the scriptures more seriously and not just simply and that 2) the Scriptures are applicable, but sometimes not in the ways we want them to be.

I stress again that some things reflect a cultural interaction and that there are things in Scriptures that reflect a religion that wants to be the inflitration of a crazy Kingdom of God.

I challenge you to think on these things.

Grace and peace.

“There is no…male and female. For you are all one in Christ Jesus” Galatians 3:28

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2 Comments

  1. I know I’ve heard that scripture be used before as a tool to make women feel guilty or ashamed for being a woman. As a woman, I appreciate your clarification of a verse commonly used to negatively impact the church. I imagine there are many men, women, and children who are glad Christian female ministers, missionaries and volunteers never let that scripture limit their outreach.
    Also, what about women who can’t have children? How could a person tell them they are only saved by having children? However, I unfortunately, can believe that’s has happened..

  2. “. . . the Scriptures are applicable, but sometimes not in the ways we want them to be.”

    Good point.

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