Every day, I have the pleasure of teaching my child something new and of seeing her grasp that new skill or knowledge.  Today, particularly, I was reveling over the privilege I have as a parent to participate in my child’s growth.  My thoughts strayed to the reality that every day, dads and moms are teaching their daughters and their sons many things from the basics of walking and talking to deep biblical truths about God and redemption.  So when does a mom’s teaching become invalid for her son?

According to certain camps, women are never to teach men.  I have always puzzled over the departure from logic that is required in holding on to this literal, non-contextualized interpretation of a few verses of Scripture.  It doesn’t make sense when you break it down to specifics.  Some say that a woman can teach boys until they turn into men.  What is the designation of manhood — when they reach the Jewish age of manhood at 13 or the American definition of adulthood at 18?  And if  these persons have really  chosen one of these arbitrary age designations, I want to know what changes in a God’s ability to use a woman as a mouthpiece for his messages just because a boy has had his birthday?   Consider how absurd this is.

In a few interesting conversations I had with fellow believers who decided that I couldn’t teach or have authority over men, I asked them whether or not they felt like they had ever benefited from, been encouraged by, or inspired by something I had taught them in the past.  The answer was yes.    And yet, at that juncture, they decided that I should stop teaching men.    My heart just aches when I think of all the church has missed and all it would continue to miss out on if women remained silent.

When we look at specifics, it is very difficult to hold onto the belief that the Apostle Paul meant that women were to “remain silent” for all time.


5 responses to this post.

  1. I am the mother of two grown sons. Even though my “teaching” to them may not be as explicit as it was when they were younger, I am still very much a role model for them. In a very real sense, a parent never stops teaching their children.

    I hope you will have a look at my attempt to tackle 1 Timothy 2:12:


    • @Marg, Yes! I that is true – a parent never stops teaching their children. So how do hierarchicalists reconcile that? Thanks for the link. I will definitely take a look at what you’ve written. 🙂


  2. I remember a message board where a man was extolling the virtues of his wife having brought him to spiritual maturity— and then she stepped back to let him lead her!! I tried to explain how absurd that was, how insulting to his wife, but he became angry and defensive. Apparently she could only ever reach a certain level of maturity and then he would have to take it from there. Ridiculous!


    • I agree, Paula! Ridiculous!
      I used to think that I had to somehow remain silent about ideas God was giving me, so that my husband would have the opportunity to ‘lead’ us, or that I had to covertly nudge my husband in the direction I thought God wanted us to go — or that I had to somehow plant ideas in his head and yet give him credit for the ideas. We really wrestled with this. Would God really give gifting and wisdom just to silence it?


      • Posted by postghost on October 13, 2010 at 10:32 am

        But see, that’s where they’ll accuse you of putting “human wisdom” before scripture. They’ve always got a handy fallacy in their defense. 😉

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