Many Questions; Few Answers

8 Therefore I want the men everywhere to pray, lifting up holy hands without anger or disputing. 9 I also want the women to dress modestly, with decency and propriety, adorning themselves, not with elaborate hairstyles or gold or pearls or expensive clothes, 10 but with good deeds, appropriate for women who profess to worship God.

11 A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. 12 I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet. 13 For Adam was formed first, then Eve. 14 And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner. 15 But women will be saved through childbearing—if they continue in faith, love and holiness with propriety. 1 Timothy 2:8-15

These verses have caused quite a stir in the Christian community over the years. Hundreds – if not thousands – of books have been written about the woman’s role in the church, each citing these verses as the primary text. What then is the true meaning of these words? How are we to interpret them? Can we pick and choose which qualities are for today, and which qualities are for the culture in which it was written? To top it all off, Paul told us that it was the woman who was deceived. How is that to be interpreted?

I urge you to come to your own conclusions based on this and other texts. Unfortunately, Western culture with its SuperHero Women and “I am Woman, Hear Me Roar” mindset flies in the face of these verses. So, which is correct? Could both be correct?

My intention is to get us all to think about what we read. These verses certainly provide that end.

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