“Let your women keep silent? … Me?!” September 5

 

Let your women keep silent? ... Me?! - "Let your women keep silent in the churches ... they are to be submissive ..." Are you kidding? Me ... keep silent? This is not first century Jerusalem! Is that really what the Bible means?“Let your women keep silent in the churches … they are to be submissive …” Are you kidding? Me … keep silent? This is not first century Jerusalem! Is that really what the Bible means?

 

Today’s Readings:
Isaiah 1 & 2
Psalm 105.1-6
Proverbs 24.23-25
1 Corinthians 14.21-40

 

Let your women keep silent? … Me?!

 

1 Corinthians 14.21-40:

Me … keep silent?!

Verses 34, “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.”

Not a popular thought in today’s world! So what does it mean? Does it mean, as women we do not have spiritual gifts or that we should not use them in church?

God has called women to be in a role of submission in the church, as well as, in the home. That does not mean that women cannot teach and use their gifts, but Scripture does forbid us from being in authority over men in the church. In part, that means women should not be elders and pastors exercising authority over men.

In our culture, we view submission as a lesser role, but Scripture does not back that up. Galatians 3.28 says:

28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

The role of submission whether in the family, in the church, or in civil society does not reflect the value or importance of the person in submission. In fact, while all three members of the Trinity are co-equal, there is submission within the Trinity. Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are all equally God, all eternal, all omniscient, all omnipotent, and more. But the Son willingly submitted to the Father:

“I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me” (Jn. 5.30).

 And He was withdrawn from them about a stone’s throw, and He knelt down and prayed, saying, “Father, if it is Your will, take this cup away from Me; nevertheless not My will, but Yours, be done.”  (Lk. 22.41-42).

And the Holy Spirit submits to and glorifies the Son. John 16.13-14:

13 However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come. 14 He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you.

Submission is a matter of function, not worth.

Submission and the ability to trust and understand it requires great faith (Matt. 8.5-10).

Submission is something we are all, men and women, called to in various ways and in various circumstances.

Within the family, while the husband is to be the leader, he is not to be a harsh, self-serving one, but a servant-leader, laying down his rights and preferences for the good of his wife and children.  Continue reading