In my last post on this subject, I listed some of the areas where women are given opportunities for teaching in a Christian context. Since then I have thought of another one. Certainly evangelism is a form of teaching, and all believers are called to this: “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you” (1 Peter 3:15).
But now I’d like to address the stickier subject of just what kind of teaching is biblically excluded for women. 1 Timothy 2:12 is our main text: “And I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence.”
Before trying to apply this verse, I’d like to look at the overall context of Paul’s letter to Timothy. Paul is laying out instructions on how to be a good pastor and a faithful teacher. He gives detailed instructions on many church-related topics: church government, prayer, church leadership, qualifications of church officers, what to teach, how to treat the church members of different ages, and specific instructions regarding men, women, widows, elders, slaves, and the rich.
The recurring theme in this letter is the central duty for a minister: faithful teaching. Paul addresses Timothy repeatedly about this: “If you instruct the brethren in these things, you will be a good minister Read More