1Ti 2:11-13 “Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve.”
There are certainly some things in the Bible that are difficult for human beings to grasp. They are easily misconstrued and used to abuse rather than to succor. It seems plain that Paul is saying that preaching the gospel is not one of the responsibilities that God has given to women. At the same time, it is important for us to understand what Paul was saying.
Paul was not bashful in pointing out a number of women that labored with him in the furtherance of the gospel (Php 4:3). He named quite a list, many of whom were women, who had helped him and others in the sixteenth chapter or Romans. While Paul might not have allowed (suffered) a woman to teach, he certainly did not view them as useless in the cause of Christ. Nor did Paul intend for women to be ignorant of the things of God.
Paul gave command to Timothy here to “let the woman (womankind) learn in silence.” It was clearly Paul’s intent that the woman learn of the things of God alongside the man. Together, they were to learn about Christ and His Bride so that they might better understand how the Lord expected them (and us) to live together in His service. We must keep the focus on Him.
The woman was to be afforded a place of quietness (silence) to learn. This was not about her never having anything to say, but about the attitude and the circumstance of her learning. As the church, we are still learning about the goodness of our Husband. We cannot do so in a place of noise, strife, and turmoil, nor can we do so if we have an attitude of not needing to learn more.
The woman is to learn with subjection in an attitude of quiet contemplation. She is to never strive for dominion over the man. This is not about being a misogynist. Instead, this is about being clothed upon with a Godly attitude.
This describes the attitude of the Church toward Jesus Christ just as much as it describes anything about a man and a woman. As the church, we are to learn in quietness. We should never do something just because we have decided that something must be done. Our desire should always be to wait upon the Lord and do His will.
Just as Adam was first formed and then Eve, Christ comes before the church. There should only be the gospel of Jesus Christ and not this plethora of doctrines concocted by man. When we set our supposed knowledge above the word of God, we are in effect seeking to usurp the authority of Jesus. We would do well to check our attitude and learn from Him through the Holy Spirit with all subjection.
May God grant us the grace to learn from His word with quietness so that we might honor and glorify Him!