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For Christians who believe in verbal inspiration, words matter when interpreting the Bible. To seriously study 1 Timothy 2, we must not ignore the precise words Paul used to talk about women.

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To read Priscilla’s story through a lens of male-only leadership diminished her calling and also Paul’s. It also obstructs, demeans, and even abuses God’s welcome to women leaders and their male allies then and now!

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Intended to help understanding, verse and chapter numbers are not the Word of God. Sometimes these additions break up thoughts that clearly should go together. This leaves interesting questions about 1 Timothy 2 and 3.

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This is the third in a series about Bible word studies and translation for egalitarians. This entry focuses on a particular instance of a word doesn’t contain all the meaning that the word can carry in 1 Timothy 2.

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Does 1 Timothy 3:8-13 discount the possibility of women deacons? Not at all.

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It would appear those opposed to women’s equality in the church have the upper hand in interpreting “problem passages” like 1 Timothy, but egalitarians are actually better equipped to explain them. 

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The occasion for writing the following article is this: at a recent summer convention [probably 1893] a young lady missionary had been appointed to give an account of her work at one of the public sessions. The scruples of certain of the delegates against a woman’s addressing a mixed assembly were found to be so strong, however, that the lady was withdrawn from the programme, and further public participation in the conference confined to its male constituency.

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When the curtain on male headship is pulled back, it shrinks from the light of logic and truth. Consider the most recent defense of male headship by John Piper. He offers three reasons why he believes it will endure, but in pulling the curtain back, we find each deeply flawed.

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Context matters. I heard it all the time in seminary. It’s no small thing to translate biblical passages from Hebrew, Aramaic, or Greek into English. This requires getting into the minds of the biblical authors to figure out what they intended to say to specific people in certain situations at a specific time in history. Academics call the science of interpretation hermeneutics. The goal is to know what God is saying about faith and practice in a certain context.

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In every corner of the world, religious teachings on gender and power have an enormous impact on human lives, especially those of girls and women. For this reason, Christians have a responsibility to accurately critique biblical teachings on gender. 

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