Guest post by Margaret Mowczko
This was a nice article and I learnt some new stuff about early translations of this word into other languages. Thanks for that!
On the broader egalitarian v complimentarian debate I am reminded of the calvinism v arminism debate. Calvinists mostly focus on Romans 9 plus a verse here and there whereas arminists draw on broad themes from many parts of scripture where the language of choice and UR is used. Both sides argue that the other is taking an awkward reading of a certain set of scriptures where Molinism is a 3rd option that tries to accept a straight forward reading of both scriptures
In this case, 1 tim 2 is the equivalent of Romans 9 and complimentarians seem to read many other scriptures like https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pRnyfVgQbXk
Is the analogy of molinism to this debate pentecostal complimentarianism?
In this case passages like 1 tim 2 are interpreted to be a husband and wife context like other complimentarian passages (my wife isn't expected to submit to all men this is based on the use of aner and gune). Also we similarly note the use of authentin and also the unusual word used for silence here.
But in submission/headship we note the example of Jesus and the church referred to in Ephesians and look at when Jesus talked about washing the feet and mentioning that is the job of a slave. Jesus explicitly said that whoever wants to be leader must be slave to all. Therefore in pentecostal premarriage counselling we were instructed on how to have a fair labour division of household chores and all different strategies to achieve that.
Many also reject Tim Keller's model that leadership means we make decisions in a tie-breaker sense. Jesus doesn't claim a decision making role in secular matters e.g. Luke 12:14. We also aren't called into an aristolean model of superiority because we "there are no male or female..we are one in Christ".
Jesus clearly had some sort of leadership role over his deciples dispite being the servant, not claiming priveledges or superiority (phillipians 2) or control (Luke 12). Even many radical feminists accept a complimentarian role in the area of romance. The man pursues, buys flours, organizes dates, makes the first move. In the same way, there is a spiritual initiator role men are called into. "Let's have a Bible study, let's worship, let's pray". That doesn't mean I call foul if my wife does that any more than I would if she organizes a date. But this is the role God is calling husbands into and it is no different when Paul (or even pseudo paul for the skeptics, still inspired imo) calls us into that than if a pastor encourages men to buy flowers for their wives.
Incidentally, I see this as subversive of the patriachy rather than promoting it. Women are traditionally stereotyped to be more spiritual, even today women almost double the number of men in the church. Yet men are called into traditionally feminized roles and women in romans 16 and other places are called into masculinized roles of teaching and apostle ship (the dangerous job of being sent) as well as financier. This is because we are not conformed to societies culture of what is male or female, but both genders are to immitate Christ emphasizing areas of traditional weakness.
Of course someone could pushback by pointing out examples of sexist pentecostals, fair enough we can't generalize. But as far as I presented it, pentecostal complimentarianism does the least violence to scripture or conscience much like molinism does in the free will/predestination debate in my opinion
Interesting analysis. However, I noticed the author doesnt deal with the 'I don't permit a woman to teach a man' part of the same sentence. Understanding the meaning of a single word does not explain that.
Also It doesnt seem to take into account Paul's very next sentence, in which he seems to be using the order of creation of man first then woman to justify his instructions. The distinct impression being given is that because God has ordained certain things, that determines how people should behave within the church. Paul's words do not appear to present himself as a total egalitarian when it comes to men and women in the church.
I would be very interested in Michael Bird's or others responses. I often think Paul is, like the rest of us, a product of his own generation and culture and we therefore should not assume that everything he wrote in the first century is God's word for all generations and cultures.
Since I am not an evangelical Christian I am not bound to the restraints of literalism or that all things in the Bible must be the product of divine inspiration. Nearly 2000 years of scholarship has provided the Bible student with an enormous advantage over first century believers. Our advantage includes having the canon of the Christian scriptures and a long history of interpretation and application and observed consequences. We have a great advantage over our Christian ancestors. The modern, free world Bible students experience democracy and egalitarianism as the first century Christians never could. Freed from the shackles of religious fundamentalism, modern Christian can understand the divine revelation better today than even the composers. God's Holy Spirit continues inspiration. It is up to the Church to correctly affirm the truth.
"Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval. Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth." (2 Tim. 2:15 NLT).