RE: Science, Women, and Paul

From: Shuan Rose (
Date: Mon May 20 2002 - 15:52:33 EDT

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            Another possibility is that I Cor. 14:34 ff. was an
    interpolation, and that
    the Pastoral Epistles were written by a "conservative' disciple of St. Paul.
    This possibilty was advanced by Rudolf Bultmann in Theology of the New
    Testament. But he is as flaming a theological liberal as you could want, and
    you may not want to be associated with him :).
    It would at least resolve what you correctly point out are contradictions in
    the Pauline position-at least in English. I'll leave you and George to fight
    out the Greek ...

    -----Original Message-----
    From: []
    Sent: Monday, May 20, 2002 2:43 PM
    Subject: Re: Science, Women, and Paul

    Hi Shuan,

    You wrote: It is possible, Mike, for Paul to be a passionate fighter for
    Christian freedom yet to have a blind spot for certain things. After all,
    many of the signatories of the Declaration of Independence were, and
    remained, slaveholders, including Patrick Henry ( "give me liberty or give
    death!") and Thomas Jefferson ("all men are created equal").
    Paul really was a strong advocate of Christian freedom. He pointed the way.
    May be we have to go down roads that he was not prepared to go.

    The point you make seems quite reasonable. However, I remain convinced that
    the text of scripture itself strongly indicates that Paul was a very strong
    promoter and defender of full equality of the sexes within the Christian

    Paul was the same man who said that, "There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave
    nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus." (Gal. 3:28)
    And we know that Paul accepted both women prophets and women deacons. (Acts
    18:26; 21:9 Romans 16:1) And, we can't help but ask, how did Paul expect
    women to serve as prophets if he did not allow them to teach or even speak
    church, as 1 Cor. 14:34 and 1 Tim. 2:12 would seem to indicate?

    I believe that a thorough examination of all the evidence clearly indicates
    that the words written by Paul which are most often criticized as being
    "sexist" did not reflect his own beliefs about how women should be treated
    the Christian Church, and that Paul was, in these passages, quoting the
    of false teachers in order to rebuke them and show how their way of thinking
    was wrong.

    Patrick Henry's and Thomas Jefferson's holding men in slavery while they
    wrote eloquent words about liberty and human equality was nothing less than
    total hypocrisy. But that's OK. They were not personally chosen by Jesus
    Christ to do more work in establishing His church than any other man who has
    ever lived. They were not inspired by the Holy Spirit to write most of the
    New Testament. The apostle Paul was. Though the USA was founded by
    I do not believe the apostle Paul was such a man.

    But that is just my opinion. Everyone else is welcome to their own.


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