House Church Talk - A vision of women and silence in the church

Bruce Woodford bwood4d at
Fri May 14 04:29:24 EDT 2004

Hi Glenn,

You wrote to Sean:" the way I Tim. 2:12 and Tit. 2:3-5 are harmonized is to 
observe that I Timothy 2 explicitly identifies itself as an "" 
context (see 3:14-15), precisely as I Cor. 14:26-40 also does. By contrast, 
Titus 2 does not give such indication of being "in church." It undoubtedly 
has in view not corporate assembling but rather day-to-day continual 
domestic training *in the home*--under the supervision of the "older women" 
in the local body."

According to I Tim.3:14,15, all that Paul wrote to Timothy had to do with 
"behaviour in the house of God, the church of the living God, the and grouns 
of the truth."  Only one church in scripture is "the house of God".   A 
house church is NOT the house of God.  There are many house churches but 
only one house of God.  There are many churches of God in cities, but only 
one house of God. The house of God is NOT a church meeting or gathering!   
(Eph.2:22; Heb.3:6; 10:21; I Pet.2:5; 4:17)  The house of God is the church 
which is Christ's body!  So the first three chapters of I Timothy are NOT 
instructions for "corporate church meetings", but rather for Christian 
behaviour  24/7!

I Timothy 2 and I Cor 14 are not parallel passages!  I Cor 14 instructs 
brethren to let their women be silent (the not to speak variety of silence) 
when the whole church is come together into one place.  But the instructions 
of I Tim1-3 deal with the behaviour of all who are in the house of God (i.e. 
all who are believers! The "silence" of I Tim.2 is a totally different word 
that does not entail "not speaking", but rather "quietness"!  See the same 
word "HESUCHIA"  in II Thess.3:12.  See the adjective "HESUCHIOS" (quiet) in 
I Tim.2:2 and I Peter 3:4.

You also wrote:"Consider that among the gifts of the "brothers" in I Cor. 
14:26 is a "psalm." All "one by one" (v. 31) "each in turn" (v. 27) 
addressing of the congregation is to be by the men, including singing."

I agree wholeheartedly with your statement but disagree with your definition 
of  WHOLE CHURCH GATHERING IN ONE PLACE!  You seem to believe that it is the 
gathering of a whole house church. If that is the case, brother, is all 
singing in your house church gatherings done one by one by males only as I 
Cor.14 requires?  If so, please tell us about it!  But if not, please do not 
continue to profess that house church gatherings are to be regulated by I 
Cor 14:23-40!  Remember that singing is not only teaching, but it is 
speaking (LALEO) which women are forbiddeen to do in I Cor 14 meetings!

Sean had written:"Colossians 3:16 would imply that one of the primary > 
purposes of singing in the meeting is to teach one another."  To which you 
replied:" This is an excellent observation. Consider then this point in 
light of I Tim. 2:12's command for women not to *teach* (the same word in 
Gk.) or to have a "man's (male's) authority."

Dear brother Glenn, can you tell us where the word "authority" came from in 
I Tim.2:12 and what the Greek word is from which it is translated?

You also wrote:"Notice that it is "the men" (males) who are to pray (I Tim. 
2:8); that is, leading in the corporate prayers (see Acts 2:42). Also note 
that prophesying is a form of *teaching* also (I Cor. 14:19, 31), and in 
view in the restriction of I Tim. 2:11-12. I would ask you: How may a woman 
be a quiet position of *learning in silence* (v. 11) while also being 
zealous to prophesy (I Cor. 14:1) at every turn (v. 30)? > ...instructing 
the younger women as mentioned above but leaving the > teaching of doctrine 
and exercising of church authority to the men. Again, the confusion arises 
only when Titus 2 is forced into a corporate assembly context."

Dear brother, you have interpretted "in every place" to mean "leading in 
corporate (assembly) prayers"!  On what basis do you confine this all 
encompassing command just to a corporate assembly gathering???  To be 
consistent, you must also do that with the prayers for all men, for kings 
and those in authority as well!  You must also confine the instructions 
relative to the women's modest adorning just to assembly gatherings as well! 
  Is that REALLY how you view I Tim 1-3???

Where do you find in scripture that women are barred from teaching 
doctrine??  Doctrine IS teaching!!! Teaching IS doctrine!!!  Also, where in 
scripture do you find "church authority"???   The fact is that the 
instruction in Titus 2, relative to women teaching, IS in a church assembly 
gathering of two or more women, but I Tim 1-3 goes far beyond Christian 
gatherings but rather instructs believers as to their behaviour 24/7 whether 
gathered or not!   The confusion that reigns relative to women's silence is 
a result of forcing every church gathering into I Cor 14 which was simply 
intended to regulate whole church gatherings in cities!

Your brother in Christ,

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