Diana cult believers tried to seduce other believers to wrong doctrine
This week we are going to continue with the topic of “coverings” and we have been working out of 1 Cor 11. 1-16 and hopefully what Paul intended to convey is much clearer.
He was dealing with the marriage relationship and he was using Gen 3.16 and Num 30 as a source for what he was teaching.
Now we are going to look at several verses in the New Testament in light of what we have learned and to clear up what the meanings are.
Remember, we are reading from translations and although most do a good job in trying to convey a proper meaning, the text often will come across with the particular slant of the translators.
We do not have the original autographs of Paul so we have to do the best we can to decipher what was really going on.
In the verses we are going to look at, this truly is the case and they have been misinterpreted for a long time. But, if we look at them with what we have now learned about coverings as based on what the Torah teaches they become much clearer.
The first one we are going to take a look at is 1 Cor 14.34-35. What Paul is basing his teaching on is Gen 3.16 and Num 30.1-16. Also, Zodiates Hebrew-Greek translation of the Bible has excellent notes on these verses.
So, let’s look at these verses like before with some commentary to help bring out the meaning. Keep in mind what we have already gone over in 1 Cor 11 as we do this.
v34....Let the women (wives in particular) keep silent in the churches (be courteous, don’t interrupt by breaking in to judge a prophecy. Paul already said that they could speak, pray and prophesy in 1 Cor 11.5. So, silent is not the issue but judging a prophecy is)
....for they are not permitted to speak (or go against the authority of the their husbands.
(This instruction had to do with the Corinthian women in particular and not an overall injunction for all believing women.
(They did not have the knowledge or experience yet and some believed that they were superior to men)
....but let them subject themselves, just as the Law (Torah) also says (Gen 3.16, Num 30 ..they key to understanding these passages)
v35....and if they desire to learn anything, let them ask their own husbands (their covering) at home, for it is improper for a woman (wife) to speak in church (against the authority of her husband).
The second verse is1 Tim 2.11-15 which has a very similar theme as 1 Cor 14so let’s look at this verse.
v11....Let a woman (wife) quietly receive instruction with entire submissiveness (learn in tranquility, silence or an attitude of composure)
v12....But I do not allow a woman (wife) to teach (wrong doctrine) or exercise authority (by dominating) over a man (husband), but to remain quiet (composed). Zodiates in his translation says this “A wife, in quietness, I let learn in submission, but a wife I will not let dominate a husband but to be in all quietness.”
Now, Paul was writing to believers in Ephesus which was home to the Diana cult and they tried to seduce believers with wrong doctrine and the women believed in their superiority over men.
Paul is trying to lay a proper, Torah-based fouindation with these believers which went against much of their previous religious training.
v13....For it was Adam who was first created, not Eve (which is why she is to be subject to her own husband)
v14....and not Adam who was deceived, but the woman being quite deceived, fell into transgression
v15....But women (wives) shall be preserved through the bearing of children (women are preserved for this even though they bring forth children in pain and sorrow according to the original curse in Gen 3.16) if they continue in faith and love and sanctity with self restraint (and not a temporary confession like in Luke 8.13).
So, as you can see, once you put these verses back into their proper Hebraic context you can see that Paul was teaching the proper authority in a marriage and “who covers who” in a spiritual context before the Lord and using that knowledge to deal with particular issues that had arisen in Corinth and Ephesus, two very pagan and Greek cities. It is a classic example of Hebraic thought over Hellenistic thought.
It was a problem back then and it is a problem now but hopefully you have some better insight into what Paul was trying to communicate. These verses and their misinterpretation has subjected women to a second class position in congregations but that was the furthest thing from Paul’s mind. Why would God fill a woman with the Holy Spirit and then tell her to be silent! The answer is He doesn’t and this can be shown using thes controversial verses and putting them into the correct Hebraic context.