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  • Writer's pictureRobert MacMillan

Give the Apostle Paul a Break

apostle paul2.jpg

Paul has taken it on the chin for centuries as the Church’s great misogynist, a true hater of women who could not get a date himself and had the temerity to instruct men how to treat women and told women where to get off.

Nothing could be further from the reality of Paul’s epistles. Egalitarians (those who believe there should be no difference between the opportunities for women to minister and those of men) by necessity take a low view of the applicability of Paul’s epistles because of their need to discount the implications of several passages in the Pauline corpus. They must pass off the various restrictions as culturally bound and not applicable to us today. But such a ploy doesn’t really work for two reasons: reason one, even if it were culturally bound, there is still an application that is transcultural (2 Timothy 3:16, 17); and reason two: a good exegete does not condemn a passage to the cultural abyss just to get rid of the implications of what it is saying to us.

If we have difficulty, it is usually with our exegesis; as it is in the case of the Pauline passages under discussion (1 Corinthians 11; 1 Timothy 2:8-15; etc.). What if the restrictions upon women mentioned by Paul were cautions regarding wives and their own husbands and not simply restrictions against women in the church.

#women #bibleegalitarian #complementariantheology

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