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Interpretation And Application


"Likewise, I want women to adorn themselves with proper clothing, modestly and discreetly, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly garments, 10 but rather by means of good works, as is proper for women making a claim to godliness. 11 A woman must quietly receive instruction with entire submissiveness. 12 But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet. 13 For it was Adam who was first created, and then Eve. 14 And it was not Adam who was deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression. 15 But women will be preserved through the bearing of children if they continue in faith and love and sanctity with self-restraint."
Good Morning my beloved,
Welcome to worship this Lord's Day!
We welcome all of our beloved brothers and sisters, from all around the world, who have been lead to join us today. We are glad to have you here!
I am well aware, that we've come to a portion of God's Word, that is considered to be controversial, there are many who avoid teaching on the subject, as history has proven, time and time again, such messages are typically not well-received; however, many of you already know, I have never preached to obtain the accolades and praise from those who listen to the message. If it is in God's Word, I am going to teach it! Without regard to the approval or disapproval of men, women, those functioning as elders, or even those filling the pews, which in and of itself is controversial in great measure. However, because of the insinuation of a feminist ideology into the life of Christ’s church. Unquestionably, the churches of this day and age, have been, to a large extent, feminized to a point of dismay.
The adoption of attitudes that are antithetical and even hostile to the Word of God has ensured the elevation of women to the eldership and the cleric among the modern churches. The increasing opinion of today's churches view these services to the saints as positions of power. And, according to this popular worldview, if women were proscribed from functioning in these roles, they are then being excluded from power.  
Any exclusion from power for any identifiable group is strictly forbidden in contemporary culture. Therefore, women were said to be being discriminated against and kept from realizing their full potential within the church, from fulfilling God’s purposes and plans for their life, if they could not serve in these positions of "power." So, in order to accommodate the desire for power among the churches it was necessary to discount two millennia of church practice and impose a radical reinterpretation of the Scriptures. 
Therefore, new concepts were advanced to support the new push to feminize the face of the faith. Scholars "discovered" new evidences for a female apostleship and dismissed much of the apostolic literature as misogynistic and culture bound by Jewish concepts, that were considered to be no longer applicable to the churches of Christ. I believe that perhaps the most vigorous push for reinterpretation was mounted against Paul’s first Letter to Timothy. Since I first began preaching, I have always preached the Word of God as the Word of God. I would like to clarify, that it is in no way an attempt to speak evil against the women of this church or any other. I am grateful for the godly women I encountered in the faith, and I thank God for the grace, and sensitivity to preach such controversial messages, and I commend the godly women in Christ's church for their grace, sensitivity and virtue. I am grateful for that.
Let us bow our heads in prayer.
Heavenly Father,
Thank You for this Word for us today. Lord, I thank You for each and every soul, You have chosen to be with us today, I am thankful for the godly men with pure hearts and holy hands, for the many women marked by godly fear, whose lives bear witness and give testimony for the sake of Christ. Those whose lives are above reproach. Father, I pray that You would cause every heart to become sensitive to the perfect balance of Your design, that in modesty, none would overstep the limit of Your boundaries, each with respect to their beauty and grace, in meekness and with quietness of spirit. I pray that You would speak in and through me, as I deliver Your Word to these wonderful people, whom You have given me to lead and whose souls I am to care for.
In Christ's precious name
Today's Message: Interpretation And Application

Open your Bibles with me to the Book of First Timothy, chapter 2. Today, as we conclude our study of this portion of God's Word, we will be examining verses 9 through 15. As I stated previously, I realize this is a quite controversial, and often unwelcome section of the Scriptures, however, we are not privileged to "pick and choose" what we will and would not like to believe or teach, it is a package deal, so to speak, we either believe all of God's Word, or we believe none of it. As He is not a part-time God, we are not afforded the right to possess a part-time faith and therefore, our obedience to His Word.

I would like to encourage you to follow along with me as I read to set the text in our minds, as we listen for the Holy Spirit to reveal to each of us the truths contained in our passage today in God's Word. 

"Likewise, I want women to adorn themselves with proper clothing, modestly and discreetly, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly garments, but rather by means of good works, as is proper for women making a claim to godliness. A woman must quietly receive instruction with entire submissiveness. But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet. For it was Adam who was first created, and then Eve. And it was not Adam who was deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression. But women will be preserved through the bearing of children if they continue in faith and love and sanctity with self-restraint." 

The Apostle Paul, in his letter to Timothy, moves on to a discussion of the respective roles and the appropriate behavior of men and women in worship. What I am going to be teaching today, is certainly one of the hottest topics in the modern church today, specifically what roles may women play in today’s church. I would submit to you, the conclusions we draw from these verses depend largely on the principles by we use to interpret them. Therefore, each one of you will have to decide for yourselves, what here is an eternal truth and what is the current cultural expression of that truth, notwithstanding anything that is contrary to the truth contained herein.
Such as the rigid literalism when one looks at these verses and says, men should always raise their hands when they pray. Women shall never braid their hair or wear jewelry. And, that women may never, under any circumstances, teach men.

While others will  look at these verses, quickly pronounce that Paul’s words were written for a specific cultural issue and problem that was present in Ephesus at the time of Paul's writing, which are now completely out of touch with current cultural realities, therefore, deeming them out of date, their teaching expired and having no relevant application in today’s church.

However, I believe, that the principles in God's Word transcend the present culture.  

In verses 9 and 10, Paul writes "Likewise, I want women to adorn themselves with proper clothing, modestly and discreetly, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly garments,but rather by means of good works, as is proper for women making a claim to godliness."

At the time of Paul's writing, for the Ephesian women, the opposite of modesty was braided hair, gold, pearls and expensive clothing. The city of Ephesus was home to the ancient temple of Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love, beauty, pleasure, passion and procreation and this temple employed hundreds of temple prostitutes. These prostitutes wore braided hair and gold as part of their working attire. These prostitutes were infamous throughout the Roman world for their elaborate hairstyles and ornate gold jewelry, so much so that you could identify a prostitute of Aphrodite, even from a distance, just by the way she dressed. Some of the Ephesian women were mimicking the hairstyles and accessories of these prostitutes when they met for worship. The Apostle Paul said that Christian women should adorn themselves with good works, which are consistent with their claim to belong to Christ, not in similar attire of these ungodly women.

I believe that the eternal truth in this principle here for women is modesty, modesty. For women to enhance their beauty in modest ways. Modesty is simply not dressing in a way that calls attention to yourself, either through seduction or through extravagance.

I further believe, that is has become quite apparent that there are some serious difficulties with these modern efforts to reinterpret the Word. If we are to allow that Paul’s statement to the men leading in prayer to be universal, then it follows in necessity, that what is stated concerning the role of women among the churches is also to be considered universal. This must be stated as it has become somewhat popular in recent days to argue that he was correcting a local problem in Ephesus. The argument of some feminist theologians is that the situation in Ephesus was an aberration; therefore, the instruction provided in this passage is not to be applied as the normal pattern for the churches of today.

The general considerations of this passage, seems to be as this portion of the Word the sole proscription against women functioning in the role of congregational teachers, it would weigh heavily upon the congregation of the Lord. However, there are other considerations in this matter. There are broad implications of the debate over setting women apart to pastoral leadership. Among the areas of concern that must be raised are questions touching such fields as bibliology, hermeneutics, Christology, trinitarianism and ecclesiology.

I believe that those wanting to subscribe to elevate women to congregational oversight, the Scriptures as translated must be discharged in favor of gender-neutral versions. Otherwise, advocates of women pastors will be continually frustrated by the language employed throughout the New Testament. I admit that this is not a strong argument for rejecting feminist theology, however, it is a consideration which, I believe must not be neglected. Supporters of female eldership will feel increasing pressure to transform liturgical language, seeking to ensure that it is all inclusive. With this mind, it won't be long before churches will be reciting the Lord's prayer as "Our Father-Mother who art in heaven," as an increasing number of churches already refer to God as "She." I simply cannot find nowhere in the Scriptures of the Holy Bible, the Word of God, a single passage or verse that supports that! That's not being misogynistic, that speaking biblical truth. If you are able to find something that speaks to the contrary, of "Our Father," by all means, point it out to me.. 

What I want to make clear, is that the Apostle does not say that women are not to teach at anytime, anywhere, under any circumstances! He does not say, "Woman are not to teach period!" In fact, Paul tells instructs the older women to teach the younger women.

In Titus 2:3-5 Paul says "Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored."

There are other cases in Scripture in which women taught men, such as in Acts chapter 18, when Aquila and his wife Priscilla took Apollos aside and instructed him further in the doctrine of Jesus. "and he began to speak out boldly in the synagogue. But when Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they took him aside and explained to him the way of God more accurately."

I believe that they key to this passage is found in verse twelve, it is the Greek word "authentein," meaning "to govern, exercise authority over." It is the word from which we get our English word "authority." It therefore, governs both the teaching and attitude that is to characterize these women. It means "to domineer or to usurp authority." It is not that women are never to teach but that women are not to take over in a church and become the final authoritative teachers. I suppose that now beg the question, "Does this mean therefore, that women are not to be the senior pastor of the church?" I believe that it does. I believe that we only need to look for the answer to that as far as verse 11, "A woman must quietly receive instruction with entire submissiveness."

The Greek word "ēsuchia," translated "quiet," also occurs in an adjectival form in verse two of this same chapter. In fact, Paul uses the same word in II Thessalonians 3:12, when he says "Now such persons we command and exhort in the Lord Jesus Christ to work in quiet fashion and eat their own bread." Here, Paul is not telling people to work silently but to work peacefully and to not make a big to do about it. It would appear that the overall goal of these was to restore peace in the worship service by placing certain limits on the role of women. Most likely, as a result of the influence of the false teaching, some women having assumed the role of teacher. This step led Paul to invoke a subordination rule; it seems to have precluded women from teaching men, since to do so constituted a wrongful appropriation of authority over men. 

I believe the obvious conclusion that one should draw from this is that although, one certainly should not underestimate the importance of women helping and mentoring other women, women are not to take over in a church and become the final authoritative teachers. 

Traditional hermeneutics advocates understanding the historical-cultural context of the passage one is reading; the feminist theology introduces a theology of victim-hood.

Feminist theology challenges Christology, and attempts to rescue the atonement from its harsh punishment angle. Many of these women are said to recoil from the idea that God would punish anyone, much less punish His Son, for the sins of man. subscribing to the idea that males shaped the various theories of atonement.   

Trinitarian theology is challenged as feminist leaders reject the idea that subordination and equality can be simultaneously true. They tend to think that by accepting a submissive role, this automatically means that a woman does not share an equal status with a man. 

However, I would offer that Scripture clearly teaches that the Son submits to the Father and the Spirit submits to the Son. Therefore, egalitarians and feminist theologians are on the horns of a dilemma. I believe that anyone who has read and studied the Gospel of John will see clearly the subordination of the Son to the Father.  

Further, I believe that it is significant that Jesus named no women to serve as Apostles. While feminist theologians have repeatedly argued that Jesus was bound by Jewish tradition, it is more evident that He liberated women. It is above questioning that Jesus treated women with the utmost respect; nevertheless, He chose no women, when appointing those who would serve as Apostles. If it is to be considered true that Jesus came to abolish role distinctions, between men and women, wouldn’t the appointment of the Apostles have been the time to do so? 

Though the Apostle Paul commended women for participating in various roles in ministry of the churches; he never once suggested that they were to function as elders. One cannot read the statements of the writers of Scripture when admonishing husbands to esteem their wives without drawing the conclusion that consideration and recognition of the worth of a woman is of utmost importance in the godly home.

"For it was Adam who was first created, and then Eve. And it was not Adam who was deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression. But women will be preserved through the bearing of children if they continue in faith and love and sanctity with self-restraint."

Why would God make what appears superficially to be an arbitrary ruling based on sex? Paul first appeals to the created order. Referring to the account of the creation of man and woman in Genesis 2, Paul concluded that the order in which Adam and Ever were created signaled an important difference in the respective roles of men and women. This is not the only time he has appealed to this priority in created order. 

In I Corinthians 11:8-11, "For man does not originate from woman, but woman from man; for indeed man was not created for the woman’s sake, but woman for the man’s sake.Therefore the woman ought to have a symbol of authority on her head, because of the angels. However, in the Lord, neither is woman independent of man, nor is man independent of woman." The Apostle Paul presents the case that men and women are equal in person, equal in dignity and equal in value; however, he also taught that women have a role that is distinct from the role expected of men. I believe that those who argue otherwise are attempting to impose a view other than the revealed Word of God.

Additionally, Paul includes the fact that it was Eve who was deceived. The emphasis in Genesis 3, and in our text, is on what transpired in Eve’s heart, deception! Allow me to point out, that her deception is not attributed to her lack of education. Eve was deceived, not because of any intellectual deficiency, but because of a moral failing. I'd like to encourage you to just take a few moments to let that sink in. The root of Eve's deception was not intellectual deficiency; nor any inequality to Adam, but moral failing.
Paul’s emphasis of the Genesis account is not that Eve as a sinner, though she was. It was on Adam's rebellion, choosing to follow the woman rather than leading her. The serpent subverted the pattern of male leadership by interacting only with Eve during the temptation. Although Adam was present, he did not intervene. The Apostle Paul never stated that women are intellectually inferior to men, or would not have instructed them to teach other women and children. Neither do women have any less worth in the sight of God, after all, Christ gave His life for women as well as for men, of all races and nationalities! 

In Closing...

I do not believe that our problem with this text is primarily exegetical, but rather practical; because what Paul says is contrary to our modern cultural ideals. Therefore, we find ourselves confronted with what is
considered in our culturally a foreign concept, a shocking teaching from Scripture causing us to recoil. 
I believe that the Word Of God, should modify and correct both our thinking and our behavior. However, there seems to be an increasing number of Christians, have determined among themselves to rationalize how we can make the Word conform to our thinking and behavior. Beloved, this is not how Scripture works! The biblical view that God sets out so very clearly written in the text of its pages, through His revealed Word. When we begin to call into question the veracity of the Word; we no longer have a sure foundation on which to base our faith. 
Some who have  heard this message, have perhaps had your prejudices conformed, while others have had their beliefs re affirmed. I hope that whatever position you currently hold, that I have been able to challenge you enough to rethink your personal opinions and views, and consider what God has said in His Word. Whatever be the case, I am unapologetic for teaching God's Word, as I am endeavoring to "destroy strongholds," to "destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God" taking "every thought captive to obey Christ!"
May it be so...
And now may the Lord bless you and keep you;

the Lord make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;

The Lord lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace.

Now and forever, in Jesus' name

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The Brian Monzon Ministries



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