“And because we see elsewhere in Scripture women like Priscilla rebuking Apollos, Junia serving alongside the apostles, and the daughters of Philip prophesying, we know women were not completely silent. Context is important to understanding passages like these!”
The article demonstrates ‘common fallacies’ which CANNOT be proven that First Christianity for the first 500 years understood ‘context’ in the ‘manner the author proposes’.
Here are simple Biblical and Earliest Church History backed Refutations to the aforementioned article’s quote:
- i) Priscilla rebuking Apollos
For example, regarding women not being allowed to ‘teach or have authority’ in SPIRITUAL matters only as commanded in 1 Timothy 2:12 —> any example quoted prior of this happening (for example, Acts 18:26 in the Priscilla-case, probably only Aquila-the-man explained) —> so, even if ‘Priscilla-did-teach-in-Acts 18:26’, this has been disallowed from the time apostle Paul wrote 1 Timothy 2:12 —> or even 1 Corinthians 14:34 or other verses which are all to be “obeyed” as ‘commands of the Lord’ (1 Corinthians 14:37) & ——–> these are NOT apostle Paul’s opinions as Scripture distinguishes these when it occurs (example: the phrase “I say, not the Lord”, NASB in 1 Corinthians 7:12).
Further, don’t you know that WOMEN being allowed but NOT approved by God as LEADERS in the PAST TIMES of IGNORANCE (Acts 17:30) depicts a CURSED state (Isaiah 3:12) in verses quoted?
“For if the word spoken through angels proved unalterable, and every transgression and disobedience received a just penalty, how will we escape if we neglect so great a salvation? After it was at the first spoken through the Lord, it was confirmed to us by those who heard,” (Hebrews 2:2 – 3, NASB)
Women can preach the Gospel, yes but “teaching the Doctrine (Commands of God) and having spiritual authority” is prohibited as 1 Timothy 2:12 implies ‘irrefutably’.
- ii) Junia serving alongside the apostles
Junia the apostle?
The NASB is a little-off in translating this verse:
“Greet Andronicus and Junias, my kinsmen and my fellow prisoners, who are outstanding among the apostles, who also were in Christ before me.” (Romans 16:7, NASB)
The more word to word or literal translations read as thus:
“Salute Andronicus and Junia, my kinsmen, and my fellow prisoners, who are of note among the apostles, who also were in Christ before me.” (Romans 16:7, KJV)
“salute Andronicus and Junias, my kindred, and my fellow-captives, who are of note among the apostles, who also have been in Christ before me.” (Romans 16:7, YLT)
Regarding ‘Junia’ (a female), the translated phrases “outstanding among the apostles” (NASB) and “who are of note among the apostles” (KJV) seem to contradict.
We can’t have two corrects as only one of them must be right whilst the other is wrong. I believe that the literal or more ‘word to word’ translations are right agreeing to the meaning that Junia was ‘famous or well known’ (i.e. of ‘well noted’, ‘noted’, ‘known’) among the apostles for her ‘good servitude toward the church’ according to her role (e. g. women always played an important role in providing and helps & as well as in charity works too, which is inclusive of rich women from secular jobs in the past too, verses: Acts 16:14 – 15, Acts 9:36, 1 Timothy 5:9 – 10).
These works are ‘not minor’ but MAJOR. For example, Acts 9:36 is resembled well by ‘blessed Theresa of Calcutta or who is dearly known as Mother Theresa’.
Please note that Mother Theresa NEVER made herself into a ‘spiritual leader’ (e.g. a priest or a pastor or an apostle) but was subject to the authority of the Roman Catholic Church which is more Biblical of her than ‘any women pastors’. She focused on the Work sincerely WITHOUT HOLDING any SPIRITUAL LEADERSHIP position obeying the Word of God in this respect and it is my personal request that she be shown Mercy in His Kingdom greatly by our Blessed Saviour for her works and obedience part which was in accordance to the Scripture way past her errors (all men have our errors too).
iii) Daughters of Philip prophesying
There’s no prohibition on the gift of prophesying. A Prophetess is not a ‘spiritual leader’ but one who is gifted to Speak a Prophecy. A male prophet can double as a ‘spiritual leader’ but not a female prophetess.
Origen (AD 185-254) stated that,
Even if it is granted to a woman to show the sign of prophecy, she is nevertheless not permitted to speak in an assembly. When Miriam the prophetess spoke, she was leading a choir of women … For [as Paul declares] “I do not permit a woman to teach,” and even less “to tell a man what to do.”
Historian Philip Schaff records early church fathers of the 3rd and 4th centuries as teaching, regarding 1 Cor. 14: 34,35,
Tertullian, the second-century Latin father, wrote that “It is not permitted to a woman to speak in church. Neither may she teach, baptize, offer, nor claim for herself any function proper to a man, least of all the sacerdotal office.” (“On the Veiling of Virgins”).
Do you still like Origen and Tertullian?
If you do, I respect ‘your obedience to His Word & authority’ —> which proves that you are not biased as these men speak the Truth set forth even in 1 Timothy 2:12.
The part which Origen or Tertullian got right (such as these, backed with Verses) is right and they are ‘wrong’ on points which they got ‘wrong’. We don’t reject anyone entirely but check each quote & practice with Scripture (wherever possible, Acts 17:11).
I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 1:16) and women who “submit & obey God’s Written Word and their husbands” will be “way greater” (Matthew 5:19, 1 Corinthians 14:37) than women who do such ‘sacrifices’ because “Obedience is better than Sacrifice” (1 Samuel 15:22 – 23) & ‘ONLY the obedient & submissive women to His Holy Word’ become the ‘Daughters of Sarah’ (1 Peter 3:6) as it is Written.
Let us ‘not’ tempt God with our Teachings when it is plainly against ‘New Testament Verses’ and ‘Earliest Christian History’ because:
“The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him;” – apostle John (1 John 2:4, NASB)
Women who submit and obey God will be Respected by God simply because they respected His Word. Likewise, women who disobey His Word will receive the ‘same disrespect’ they showed toward His Word in the first place as ‘one only reaps what one sows’ (Galatians 6:7).
Obedience is a trait of the humble and rebellion is a trait of the proud:
“But He giveth more grace. Wherefore He saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.” – apostle James (James 4:6, KJV)
Best is, those who preach the Verses above in the same manner as First Christianity did are certainly ‘not’ going to be ‘any lower’ than those ‘who preach against it’. So, I will stick to this ‘same exegesis’ in First Christianity as Described above.
What’s the Logic?
“God’s World, God’s Rules”.
May God have Mercy on whom He Wills, Blessed be the Name of the Lord!
Peace to you
P/S: How about the Verse which says that there is ‘no more male or female … etc. in Christ?’
The ‘topic’ when the Galatians verse above was written is “not” church leadership, marriage nor man-woman relations & thus it cannot be quoted to be used in these areas to cancel out the commandments which exist in such aspects.
As an analogy, consider the phrase ‘neither Jew nor Greek’ which exists in this verse as well. Wrongly applying the ‘cancelling out’ interpretation as they did to the ‘neither male nor female part’, some in the church created the ‘Replacement Theology error too’.
This error ‘thinks’ that the ‘church’ has ‘replaced Israel’ & is the root of ‘Christian anti-semiticism’ which is again a product of such Western Christianity (Example, Hitler was such a Christian).
‘Christian hatred & jealousy towards the Jews’ is because they are unwilling to accept the fact that Scripture has given certain ‘unconditional Covenant-based blessings to Jews because of the faithfulness of their patriarchs’. Unless we can demonstrate a faith equivalent to these, let’s not get jealous toward the Jews regarding such and thus, God is fair!
I am “not” a Jew but I don’t change my interpretation of Scripture to ‘claim these things’ which are “not” my role/promises. Similarly, gender based commandments exist to separate our roles & we need not covet roles which were not meant for us. Contentment in fulfilling our calling in the Will of God according to what is designated to us is a key of obedience which is always better than lawless sacrifices.
On earth, ‘Jews & Gentiles are different’ with respect to ‘law observance’ (E.g. Jews may be zealous for the Law while Gentiles are “not” to observe beyond the four things mentioned as even this passage confirms it again in Acts 21:24 – 25 marking this distinction between Jew & Gentile believers).
Note that the Galatians verse doesn’t “cancel out” this earthly “believing Jew-Gentile” distinction just like it doesn’t cancel out the earthly male-female distinction either. Thus, ‘male and female are different’ with respect to ‘New Testament Rules’ too as highlighted prior.
The aim of the Galatians 3:28 verse is also to point to a time (‘not’ now on earth) but beyond this life where in the resurrection, all these earthly distinctions will eventually vanish! Yes, there will be “no” more ‘male or female’ (no gender) from that time, henceforth:
“For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven.” – Lord Jesus Christ (Matthew 22:30)
Obedience – Friend of God
Obedience is the Highest Form of Giving.
God Loves us whether we obey or not because God Loves His Enemies too (Matthew 5:43 – 44).
The Difference is that God Loves His Enemies “less” (e. g. Judas called ‘friend’ using a weaker Greek Word, in Matthew 26:50) while God Loves His Friends “way More” (e. g. apostle John in John 13:23).
What’s an important definition?
Enemies of God = Those who don’t love Him back or Disobey His Commandments
Friend of God = Those who love Him back and obey His Commandments
A Verse for this Biblical Definition:
“If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.” – Lord Jesus Christ (John 14:15, NASB)
The Verse above does not mean that God loves only those who love Him as explained earlier but rather that ‘we only love God back if we keep His Commandments’. Hence, the more Commandments (“Verses”) we obey willingly, the more we love Him.
So, His Love is Greatest Toward “believers who Love Him back obeying Him” (John 14:15) —-> becoming “His Friends” (a Stronger Word in Greek, in John 15:13 – 14) as the Verse below Beautifully Describes:
“Greater Love has no one than this, that one lay down His Life for His Friends.” – Lord Jesus Christ (John 15:13, NASB)
Did you notice that there’s a Verse for each claim made?
Each Verse helps us Understand an Important aspect and by ignoring some Verses, we can easily misinterpret the Bible or come up with illogical conclusions.
So, are we really a ‘Friend of God’?
Peace to you
P/S: Did First Christianity Understand these Verses in such Manner pointing to Christ Centered Universalism?
Yes, to quote from Pages 46 – 47 of the ‘Lost Orthodoxy’ Book:
Did Justin understand Universal Salvation?
Yes (example quote):
“For it had its SALVATION from itself; so that in SAVING the SOUL, God does no great thing. For to be saved is its natural destiny, because it is a part of Himself, being His inspiration. But no thanks are due to one who saves what is his own; for this is to save himself.
For he who SAVES a part himself, saves himself by his own means, lest he become defective in that part; and this is not the act of a good man. For not even when a man does good to HIS CHILDREN and offspring, does one call him a good man; for even the most savage of the wild beasts do so, and indeed willingly endure death, if need be, for the sake of their cubs.
But if a man were to perform the SAME ACTS in behalf of his SLAVES, that man would justly be called good. Wherefore the Saviour also taught us to LOVE our ENEMIES, since, says He, what thank have ye? So that He has shown us that it is a GOOD work not only to love THOSE that are BEGOTTEN of Him, but also THOSE that are WITHOUT [i.e. ‘not’ Begotten of Him, implied]. And what He enjoins upon us, He Himself FIRST of ALL DOES.” (St. Justin Martyr, CHAPTER VIII.–DOES THE BODY CAUSE THE SOUL TO SIN? FRAGMENTS OF THE LOST WORK OF JUSTIN ON THE RESURRECTION)
Please note ‘carefully’ that Justin implies that God Saving ‘His Own Begotten or Children is NOT a big deal’. Justin then proceeds to argue that Christ is above ALL because He Promises to Perform the SAME ACTS toward ‘His Slaves’ too and lastly toward HIS ENEMIES as well in the Beautifully Analogy above —> as the only Context of this Passage is ‘where the SOUL is SAVED eventually in its EXISTENCE’ —-> toward becoming “RESURRECTED in the FLESH’ again —-> in the Context of LOVE and GOODNESS, and ‘not Judgment’ —> toward His ENEMIES too —-> yes, the Context of the passage above proves that the SAME RESURRECTION to SINLESS-NESS being Promised thus in LOVE toward —-> BOTH ‘THOSE that are BEGOTTEN of Him’ —-> and ‘also THOSE that are WITHOUT [i.e. ‘not’ Begotten of Him, implied] —> proving that this must refer to the ‘not explicitly mentioned (though implied) second resurrection of the wicked’ toward ‘sinless-ness’ —> post the Lake of Fire Judgment (which follows after their ‘first resurrection for Judgment’, John 5:28 – 29 —-> and this GOOD and LOVE toward His ENEMIES, in saving ‘their souls to exist’ eventually in a ‘resurrected sinless body’ —> will certainly come to pass, as Justin remarks in faith, ‘He Himself FIRST of ALL DOES’.
Blessed be Lord Jesus Christ for His Unfathomable Love!
Truly, “God is Love” (1 John 4:8).