THE CHURCH AT CORINTH
CHLOE: LEADER OF A CONGREGATION.
1Cor 1: 10-11Fellow believers, I encourage all of you through the Name of our Lord Jesus the Anointed One to speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, and that you will be completely equipped with the same mind and the same intention. My fellow believers, it has been made clear to me about you, by Chloe’s followers, that there is rivalry among you. 12-16 What I mean is this: each of you is saying, “I follow Paul”, “I follow Apollos”, “I follow Cephas (Peter)”, “I follow the Anointed One.”
Chloe’s followers: ‘Chloe’s congregation. Certainly not ‘household’. The expression is identical to that in the following verse, ‘I follow Paul’ etc. (Nyland, Source New Testament f/n 7, p. 413.) ‘The normal pattern for Christian worship until AD 311 when Christianity became a legally recognised religion was for the believers to meet in houses. At one time it was accused of being a religion of ‘women and slaves’ f/n vv 5-9 p. 324, Study Bible for Women).
CORINTHIAN WOMEN: KEEN STUDENTS OF ‘THE WAY’.
1 COR 14: 34 The women should keep silent… not allowed to speak … if there is anything they desire to know…
These women in Corinth were keen students of the scriptures; to know more about the Gospel; they were doing what all believers do when in the company of someone more knowledgeable than themselves; they submit themselves to the teacher in asking questions. What a healthy church!
The Judaisers obviously didn’t feel like that was being very supportive and appeals to Paul to back him up and tell the women to shut up. It has the opposite effect however, and Paul tells them tin no uncertain terms that it is ‘utter rubbish’! To be calling on redeemed women to be silent, they complain that the ‘law’ demands this. However, there is no Law of Moses (or anywhere else in the Hebrew scriptures) that demand silence. This ‘law’ came back with them, apparently from Babylon, or alternatively it was more of a Jewish prescriptive in force at that time. Expecting women to ‘ask their husbands at home’ is not anywhere in the Gospel. Paul says its ‘utter rubbish’ and so do we. Amen!
Paul in his argument with them now quotes from the letter, which the Corinthian assembly sent to him.
34-38 “The women must be silent in the assemblies: for they are not allowed to speak, but to be supportive, just as indeed the law states. And if they want to learn something, they are to ask their own husbands at home; for it is a disgrace for women to speak in assembly.” Utter rubbish!
WOMEN EVERYWHERE ARE GIVEN THE GRACE GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
The Holy Spirit gifts for all believers
1 Cor 12: 11…
THE CHURCH AT COLLOSSE
NYMPHIA: CHURCH LEADER AND CONGREGATION IN HER HOUSE
Col 4: 14 14-15 Luke the much loved doctor, and Demas greet you. Greet the fellow believers who are in Laodicea, and Nympha and the assembly that is in her house.
The King James Version changed the female names Junia and Nympha to masculine names, reversed the order of “mother and brothers”, reversed the order of Priscilla (woman) and Aquila (man) when the couple was presented in a teaching context, and added the words “a man” to a sentence about a woman being in a position of responsibility.’ It is then not surprising that their social context, that is, the way in which women were viewed in their culture, impacted upon the way they chose to translate. Of course, this applies to bias in all areas, not just to women passages’ (Nyland, introduction ‘The Source New Testament.).
APPHIA: FELLOW BELIEVER / CHURCH LEADER: ‘SUFFERED FOR CHRIST’S SAKE’
(Philemon 2: 2) 1-3 From: Paul, a prisoner because of the Anointed One Jesus, and Timothy our fellow believer. To: Philemon our dear friend and coworker, and to Apphia our fellow believer, and to Archippos our fellow soldier, and to the assembly which meets in your house. Hello! May you have peace from God our Father and Lord Jesus the Anointed One!
A Christian of Collossae, ancient Phrygian city, now a part of Turkey. ‘She is thought to have been stoned to death in the reign of Nero. Some say the three people mentioned here was a family and the church met in their home. (Harpers Bible Dictionary: Philemon). Edith Deen comments that the family lost their lives along with their slave Onesimus who Paul met in Rome and sent the letter back with him to them.
CHURCH IN PHILIPPI
EUODIAS AND SYNTACHE: WOMEN LEADERS IN THE CHURCH IN PHILIPPI.
(Philippians 4: 2-3) I encourage Euodia and I encourage Syntyche to think the along the same lines along with the Lord. Yes, and I ask you too, Synzugos, to assist these women, seeing that they fought in the contest with me for the Good News,
Eminent women in the church at Philippi in Macedonia. Philippi was a Roman colony, the most important city in Macedonia. This is where Paul Lydia, a businesswoman of Thyatira. Like Timothy, these two women ‘laboured with Paul in the Gospel’.
THE ELECT LADY: CHURCH LEADER
2 Jn 1-3 From: The Elder.
To: The chosen Lady Authority and her members, whom I certainly love, and that’s the truth! – and I myself am not the only one who does, but also all those who have come to know the truth – because of the truth, which stays with us, and will be with us forever.
PAUL VISITING THE ELECT LADY SOON
12 Although I have much to write to you, I don’t want to use paper and ink. Instead I hope to visit you and talk with you face to face, so that we will be totally happy.
ANOTHER WOMAN, CHURCH LEADER, ‘ELECT LADY’ SENDS GREETINGS.
13 The members of your chosen lady fellow believer send their greetings.
WOMEN IN EPHESUS
WOMEN WHO DO GOOD WORKS: DEACONS / PRAYING PUBLICLY
1 Tim 2: 8-10 So then I would like the men everywhere to pray, leading clean lives, without anger or argument. And the same goes for women too.
I would like women to dress themselves with good taste and in decent clothes with modesty and good sense, not with ornamentally arranged hair or gold or pearls or very expensive clothes, which is fitting for women while they are giving a ‘Convert to Judaism’ instructions, and which is fitting for women while they are doing good works.
11-14 A woman must learn and she is to learn without causing a fuss and be supportive in everything.
WOMEN ENCOURAGED TO BE CHURCH LEADERS
1 Tim 3:1-7 This is a faithful saying. If any person aspires to be a Guardian, they are desiring a fine work.
8-13 In the same way also deacons must be dignified
WOMEN ELDERS WORTHY OF DOUBLE HONOR
17-18 Let the elders who give practical help be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who go to trouble instructing and training about the Word. For the Scripture says, “You must not muzzle an ox which threshes grain,” and “The worker is worthy of their wages.”
EUNICE AND LOIS: JEWISH WOMEN OF GOOD FAITH
11 Tim 1: 3-7 I recollect the non-overly critical faith that you have, which first inhabited your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am convinced it’s in you too.
Timothy’s maternal line Jewish. His mother was a Jew therefore, Timothy was a Jew. His father was a Greek. These Jewish women, his grandmother and mother, were educated, had a good knowledge of the law and the prophets; they had instructed Timothy in them since his childhood. ‘And that from a child theou hast known the Holy Scriptures’ (2 Tim 3: 14).
INSTRUCTIONS FROM JAMES TO WOMEN WHO WANT TO BE TEACHERS
Jas 3:1-2 My fellow believers, (both men and women) not many of you should become teachers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more so. For we all make mistakes in lots of things.
James is writing to people living in troubled times. He wrote the letter before 50 AD and was martyred 62 AD. No difference is made here by James, the Lord Jesus’ brother; neither in his introduction and throughout his letter, no difference is made between men and women. He simply addresses them all as ‘fellow believers’ and gives some wise advice and is intimating that no one person can be right about everything but, rather, and he includes himself, we all make mistakes and when we do, as teachers, people will judge the teacher more harshly because they are setting the bench mark. By saying ‘we all make mistakes’ he is including himself in his instruction. Such an attitude shows wisdom and humility.
CHURCH IN CRETE
LETTER TO TITUS
FEMALE ELDERS IN THE CHURCH AT CRETE
Ch.2:1-6 But as for you, what you say must be appropriate for completely sound instruction and training. Male elders are to be clear headed, well respected, sensible. Their faith, love and endurance must be completely sound.
The same goes for female elders too. They are to be suitably holy as is fitting for their appointment,
: 7 It’s necessary that a Guardian be without reproach as God’s manager … and stand their ground while teaching.
Women Elders in Crete – church guardians (God’s ‘managers’, ‘ oikonomos’ , Nyland). An Elder’s role was to teach the Word, ‘completely sound instruction and training’. Nothing is more important than this. Christians are desperate for sound instruction and training. For men today to deny this role to women who have spent their lives studying the Word of God is outrageous! As if a woman can’t serve God in teaching people how to live properly according to the clear, simple Word of God. This heresy will be identified.
WOMEN SLAVES IN CRETE- EVANGELISTS AND TEACHERS
9-10 Encourage slave servants to be supportive of their masters in everything, to please them well, and not to contradict them or steal things from them. Instead, they are to be completely trustworthy, so that in every way they make attractive the instruction about God our Saviour to all.
Societal changes are gradual. Paul did not agree with slavery. just as Moses (OT) did not agree with the way Jewish divorce was conducted. Jesus when asked about divorce said Moses allowed it because of the hardness of men’s hearts. Society generally, does not change overnight Paul wrote to the Galatian church:
“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.”
You will find plenty of arguments to the contrary, for example…
but its a matter of you personally deciding whether you belive God is sexist or grace and freedom came through Jesus Christ and you are called to serve.
I have decided to follow and serve Jesus. Whatever God says to me I will do it.
We are all free in Christ. God is no respecter of persons.
Hey, don’t let them get you down