But is he all that? Maybe,maybe not.
I wish he was Here himself to answer speak on the accusations leveled against him.
But since he isn't, we are going to carefully examine his letters and when we are done ,you will be left to decide
Like the saying goes, "To be great is to be misunderstood"
In first Timothy, for example, he told the women to keep silence in church. And if they have any question, they should ask their husband. Suggesting that men are superior in knowledge
So was Paul really misogynistic?
In his letter to the church at Rome, he listed some sets of people who have been beneficial to him in the ministry.
The first four were women.
Infact, he singled out Timothy's mum and grand mum and acknowledged them for being responsible for Timothy's spiritual formation.
Will an Anti- Woman publicly appreciate women for their outstanding commitment ?
I think not.
Infact,he asked the church to give one of those ladies a preferential treatment !
The Bible clearly States (written by this same Paul) that," IN CHRIST there is neither MALE nor FEMALE for we are all one (Equal) in Christ
A lot of people have misquoted Paul on this and it is quite sad. What Paul said was,"THE man is the head of THE woman"
In case u are not satisfied,let's visit our Greek Dictionary(where the new testament was translated from)
The Greek word for woman used in this verse is "Gune".& guess what? Gune Is only used when u are addressing a married woman/wife
Here,Paul used "Gune".
So the Corinthian church knew exactly what Paul was saying & who he was saying it to!
Why did Paul say,in a marriage- the man is the head of the woman?
Is it because of gender? I don't think so.
If we skip to 1 tim 2:13, Paul reiterates the fact that the man was MADE first. And in 1 cor 11:8 it's repeated that the woman came out of the man
And I don't think you can fault him for this.
Paul wasn't a 21st century writer. These letters were written over 2,000 years ago. Paul was a 1st century writer that lived in a world that is different form ours
Yes, Paul's letters were inspired by God. But his personality and the situation he was surrounded by wasn't.
Let me give an example...
Was that statement inspired by God?.
In 1 cor 11:2, Paul started off by appreciated them for keeping the ordnances he has delivered/delivers to them.
Ordinance. Greek is Paradosis. It means tradition. Jewish tradition/law.
Apart from the fact that Paul was an occasional writer, which means his letters addressed specific people/situations, most of his letters (especially) to the Corinthian church were answers to questions.
For example they asked him if it was okay for them to marry. And Paul's response was "left to me,its better to remain single"
Because of the PRESENT distresses they were in!.
You see, to understand a man you must understand the times he lived in.
Paul's letters were all inspired by God,but his personality/situations weren't.
ONE VERSE AT A TIME
In chapter 14 ,verse 31 of 1 Corinthians, Paul said the women should keep silence in church.
Why? Because they have been commanded to do so by the law.
So Paul wasn't referring to the law of God,but the Jewish law set by men!
That was the issue Paul was faced with. It might not have been a law from God but it was the law anyway.
The law also permitted men to beat their wives.
If in heaven,before Christ there is neither male or female but on earth women are told not to speak in public, you want Paul to flout the order and present the church
Also in 1 Corinthians 11 where he told women to cover their hair when praying,he said "does not NATURE itself teaches you", not "does not the law of God teaches you".
He also told the men not to keep long hairs. But we know that some of patriarchs had and kept long hairs!
In 1 cor 14, Paul said women should keep silence in church and if they have any question they should ask their husbands at home.
But if we go back to chapter 11,he said "any woman that prays/prophesies with her hair uncovered dishonours her hair".
Once again,Paul was addressing the traditions and customs of his day.
This was the same church were people slept with their father's wife. Same church that turned communion service into a drinking competition.
People got drunk right in church!.
That's why Paul said "is it not shame for you in you keep short hairs?"
New Romans and Jewish laws were made. This was one of them.. This was the world Paul lived in
Why then did Paul give the same instruction to the church at Ephesus which later became one of the most matured churches?
To understand a man you must understand the times he lived in.
Usurp Authority - two words
Usually, the Greek word for authority is exousia ,which means influence/ability. But here Paul chose a different Greek word and this is THE ONLY time in the entire Bible this word was used.
Authenteo means to DOMINATE. So it can read "I suffer not the women to DOMINATE the men". Because that exactly was what was happening.
Tithing was a fence around prosperity.
Vow was a fence around abstinence.
Silence was a fence around wisdom.
What about those that weren't married?he wasn't talking to them. This was between couples. And couples alone.
Similar to the above Influence the goddess Diana was having over some women in church is why Paul asked them to dress modestly.
Your Christianity Is about the heart and Not the expensive jeweleries. He was dealing with economic modesty and humility of the heart
Even though this thread about examining Paul's letter, I think I should address an alleged misogynistic statement that Peter made.
When Peter said "husband should dwell with their wives as unto the weaker vessels", he was talking about physical weakness. Not mental or spiritual.
Women are comparatively physically weaker than men
Read it in the Amplified Version
Peter said "give honour unto your wife". A misogynic Man won't make that statement.
I strong believe that some of the men in that city or even church hated Paul.
To the 21st century lady, Paul might come off misogynistic, but to the 1st century Roman/Greek/Jewish Christian, Paul was a "Woman's Right Activist"
All roles were played by men including those of female character!
The law also permitted men to beat their wives. Remember,she has NO option to divorce him unless he dies
Read it in MSG and ask yourself if this man is remotely misogynistic.
See you next Thursday
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