1 Timothy 2:12 "Domineering?"

Ann Nyland accuratebibles at ozemail.com.au
Sat Jan 11 18:05:34 EST 2003

Ward, this point takes a quite different view to the one you have expressed,
but there is an excellent book on this topic, a most thorough treatment,
written also by an Australian: J.M. Holmes, Text in a Whirlwind: A Critique
of Four Exegetical Devices at 1 Timothy 2.9-15, Journal for the Study of the
New Testament Supplement Series 196, Studies in New Testament Greek 7,
Sheffield, 1999. It was originally a PhD thesis.

Ann Nyland

----- Original Message -----
From: "B. Ward Powers" <bwpowers at optusnet.com.au>
To: "Biblical Greek" <b-greek at franklin.oit.unc.edu>
Sent: Sunday, January 12, 2003 6:54 AM
Subject: [b-greek] Re: 1 Timothy 2:12 "Domineering?"

> Memo Joel.
> At 08:56 PM 030110 -0500, Joel Thomas Banks wrote:
> >In reading Carroll D. Osburn's "Women in the Church, Reclaiming the
> >(ACU Press, 2001) I noticed a different take on 1 Timothy 2:12 which has
> >bearing on discussion on this verse in October, 1996. Quoting from page
> >246,
> >
> >  "It is easy to understand how 2:12 could be read in English with the
> >conclusion that a woman is never to teach a man or be in a position of
> >authority over a man. However in the Greek text, the verb "domineer"
> >"have authority" RSV NIV) qualifies "teach" and specifies what kind of
> >teaching is prohibited.(102) It is not that these women are "teaching"
> >se, but specifically that they are "teaching domineeringly" that annoys
> >Paul.
> There is an implication here that the passage in 1 Timothy 2 is referring
> to women in general in relation to men in general. This is indeed the way
> that most commentators and translators appear to take it. To the contrary,
> the conclusion which I am led to from assessing the Greek text in the
> context of biblical teaching is that 1 Timothy 2:8-15 is referring to the
> husband-wife relationship (the concept of headship/subordination) which is
> discussed quite extensively in the NT, rather than to the idea that it
> speaks about ALL women teaching ALL men (in any manner whatsoever). The
> words ANHR and GUNH used in this passage are in the singular, can equally
> well be translated and understood as "husband" and "wife", and are so
> translated in the parallel passage (which has much in common with this
> of 1 Peter 3:1-7, and the closely related passage (on my interpretation)
> Ephesians 5:22-33.
> If one recognizes that 1 Timothy 2:8-15 is referring to the issue of
> marital headship and subordination, one finds many NT passages which
> further elucidate this issue and clarify its meaning. If one takes this
> passage as referring instead to men in general and women in general (i.e.
> relationship between the sexes in ministry in the church) one goes against
> the ANHR/GUNH parallel with 1 Peter 3, against the fact that both these
> words here in the Greek are in the singular, against the context (for
> is nothing in verses 8-15 which indicate a reference to the church as
> distinct from home and family); and in what it is taken to mean it is left
> as unique in all Scripture. By this "everybody" interpretation, Paul's
> teaching in this verse is made to contradict 2 Timothy 2:2 where the
> apostle explicitly says to Timothy that "the things you have heard me say
> in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable people (ANQRWPOS,
> both men and women) who will also be qualified to teach others".
> I have set this out in full detail in my book "The Ministry of Women in
> Church" (SPCK Australia, 1996); see also the article "Women in Church
> Leadership" in The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, vol 4 page
> There is much to be said in favour of understanding the Greek of 1 Timothy
> 2:8-15 as referring to the husband/wife/home situation. Then verse 12 is
> seen as saying that the wife is not to "domineer" over her husband. It's a
> headship issue.
> Ward Powers
>                                 http://www.netspace.net.au/~bwpowers
> Rev Dr B. Ward Powers        Phone (International): 61-2-8714-7255
> 259A Trafalgar Street          Phone (Australia): (02) 8714-7255
> PETERSHAM  NSW  2049      email: bwpowers at optusnet.com.au
> AUSTRALIA.                         Director, Tyndale College

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