You have heard the argument in various ways: A woman can teach the Word of God Monday through Saturday, but not in the pulpit. You may have pondered and wondered, what’s the difference. Does the bible verify this doctrine, or is this doctrine a compromise between right and wrong. Nevertheless, what does the scripture say concerning a woman’s role in the church and home?
Women Silenced In The Church
The scriptures instruct us straight forcefully that God prohibits women from speaking in the church, but are to be remain silent. Paul commanded all churches, “For God is not the author of confusion but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints. Let your women keep silent in the churches, for they are not permitted to speak; but they are to be submissive, as the law also says. And if they want to learn something, let them ask their own husbands at home; for it is shameful for women to speak in church.” 1 Cor 14:33-35 Take note that These commandments were given to all Christian women, and in all churches, not just the Corinth church of the first century. Take note that this silence spoken of here prohibits women from taking on any speaking positions. She can’t be a song leader. She can’t lead prayer. She can’t preach or teach anyone as long as the church is assembled. She can’t even ask questions while the church is assembled. These commandments are a total prohibition for any woman to take any speaking role in the church assembly. These commandments come directly from the Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Cor 14:37
As concerning the part which states” “As the law (i.e. the law of Moses) says also” The Jews were very strenuous, and their laws were very strict. The Rabbis taught that a woman should know nothing but the use of the spinning wheel (for weaving wool or flax), and they were specially prohibited from asking questions in the synagogue, or even from reading. Thus the strictness of this law which Paul was instructed to write by the Holy Spirit was not something new, for the Israelites had been following this teaching since the law was given by Moses.
Women Prohibited To Teach or Have Authority Over Men
The apostle Paul continued to speak of the role of women in his instruction Timothy. He said, “Let a woman learn in silence with all submission. And I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence.” 1 Tim 2:11-12 Take note that these verses coincide with Paul’s instruction to the Corinth church. In both instances women are to be submissive and silent in regards to learning. Take note, women could ask questions at home, but not in the assemblies. Women were prohibited from teaching men the Word of God. This commandment was both in and out of the assembly. The apostle Peter stated that even in the home women could only teach their husbands by their conduct, and not by the Word of God. 1 Pet 3:1
Many have been mislead to believe that Priscilla was a woman preacher. Luke wrote, “So he (Apollos) began to speak boldly in the synagogue. When Aquila and Priscilla heard him, they took him aside and explained to him the way of God more accurately.” Acts 18:26 It is noteworthy that Aquila and Priscilla, and Luke the writer of this passage, were all apart of Paul’s inner circle, and were aware of Jesus’ prohibition for women to teach men.
Also take note how that Luke wrote as though both did the explaining: This is the same language Luke made when he said, “Peter and John answered and said to them,”Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you more than to God, you judge. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.” Acts 4:19-20 Did both Peter and John speak this message at the same time, or did one speak and the other remained silent? Luke was just as ambiguous when he wrote a similar phrase: “Peter and the other apostles answered and said:”We ought to obey God rather than men.” Acts 5:29 Who logically would say that Peter didn’t do the speaking, while the others in agreement held their peace. Such is the case of Luke’s phrasing of Aquila and Priscilla. Aquila taught Apollos, and Priscilla remained silent in accordance to the law of Christ. Such is the reasoning of Paul’s writing to the church of Corinth to do things decently and in order. 1 Cor 14:27-33
Women were also prohibited from exercising authority over men. This also was both in and out of the assemblies. Women are prohibited from being elders and deacons of the churches. 1 Tim 3:1-13 They are also subject to their own husbands in the home in everything. Eph 5:22-24
What Can Older Women Can Teach Younger Women?
It has been stated by many that if women can’t teach men the Word of God, then they can teach other women the Word. Yet, the bible said no such thing. Paul’s letter to Timothy specifically taught what only older women can teach to younger women: “That they train the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed.” Titus 2:4-5 This coincides with Paul’s words to Timothy when he wrote: “Nevertheless she (the woman) will be saved in childbearing if they continue in faith, love, and holiness, with self-control.” 1 Tim 2:15
Why Women Can’t Be Preachers and Teachers of God’s Word?
Paul made it abundantly clear as to why all Christian women were prohibited from teaching God’s Word in or out of the assemblies: “For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression.” 1 Tim 2:13,14 Woman from the beginning was placed under man because she sought to be equal with God. For this cause, she was placed under the rule of her husband in all things. Eph 5:24 Paul said it very bluntly, “But I want you to know that the head of every man is Christ, the head of woman is man, and the head of Christ is God.” 1 Cor 11:3 This is true in the churches and is true in the home as well.
It is also noteworthy to take on the false teaching which states women can be preachers, but not in the pulpit. If this were so, then where is the scripture which commands a woman to preach or teach the Word of God? It’s not there! If this is so, how could woman be subject to the her husband and be a chaste keeper at home while preaching the Word of God? It’s simply impossible, because one would contradict the other. It is also noteworthy to state that there is no mention of women preachers, teachers, elders, deacons or any other such position for women in the entire new testament. They taught not and they baptized not. In the church assembly, woman is subject to the law of Christ to be silent. In the home, she is subject to her husband in everything, and no other role did Christ give unto her.
Nevertheless, women were made to have children. Woman was made a helpmate fit for man both in the church and in the home. Women are the core of the church in the role God designed for her. By her obedience to her husband and training of her children is man made qualified to become elders and deacons of the church. 1 Tim 3:1-13 Even preachers are more revered when his wife and children are subject to him. So, by being subjective to her husband, to the elders of the church, and to God’s commandments, woman is saved by the gospel of Christ. No, woman can’t lead the church, but without her subjection, the church government can’t exist. No, woman can’t preach or teach the Word, but without her subjection, the Word can’t be preached effectively. As Paul concluded, so do I, “Let all things be done properly and in an orderly manner.” 1 Cor 14:40