Shall Women Teach?
by John Rhinehart
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Again, there is a misguided teaching within the church that women cannot speak, teach or have leadership over a man. This weak doctrine is based on the misreading and understanding of 1 Tim 2:11,12, which only applies only to “wives” and not to women (single) in general.
"Let the woman (wife) learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman (wife) to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, (husband) but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they (husband & wife) continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety." 1 Tim 2:11-15 KJV
Adam and Eve being the first humans became the first married couple in the world. The reason God did not want the wife (not single women) to teach the husband with complete authority is found in the following verses:
God instructed Adam about the garden:
"And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die." Gen 2:16,17
Adam then taught Eve about the garden; however, Eve did not comprehend all of it and went astray on the teaching of Adam:
"And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die." Gen 3:2,3
Thus, the serpent challenges the first teaching of God’s Word with Eve and Adam. Adam was not deceived; he knew what he was doing, and did not stop the serpent or his wife by correcting them both about the Word of God, and was again, not deceived when he sinned,
"And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.” Gen 3:6
However the woman being deceived for not fully understanding what Adam taught her and was in the transgression for it.
It was not the will of God that man was to have rule over “all women” but only his wife:
"Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee." Gen 3:16
Thus she is not to teach him with authority—1Tim 2:11-15.
1 Tim 2:11-15 then fits perfectly with:
"Let your women (wife) keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but [they are commanded] to be under obedience, as also saith the law.[Today we are not under the law] And if they will learn
any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women (wife) to speak in the church." 1 Cor 14:34,35 KJV
Now that we have seen the reference to 1Tim 2:11-15 as to why the wife is not to teach her beleving husband the Word of God with authority, we can also see that 1Tim 2:11-15 has nothing to do with single women teaching the Word of God. However, with the Word of God, men and women can teach the Word in error thus becoming misguided and false teachers and we can see the women side of this in Revelation 2.
The Church at Thyartira had a women prophet and teacher. Now she was teaching false doctrines but God did not instruct the church to remove this woman from that position within the church (as Paul did in 1Cor 5) or that it was wrong for the church to have such an individual as a woman teacher. God instructed only for her to “repent.”
There were husband and wife ministers, Prisca and Aquila, Rom 16:3-5; Acts 18:26. In Acts they took a minister that was already “instructed in the way of the Lord” and both them, the Husband and Wife, “expounded unto him the way of God more perfectly.” Here, a woman is teaching a man and the Fundamentalists are telling us that a woman is forbidden to teach a man. Who is right, the Word of God or the Fundamentalists?
And that’s my comment on what the Word of God is conveying about women teaching.
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