I have recently finished reading the New Testament and I am collecting my thoughts about what I read in this series of posts. Today I am writing about what the New Testament says about women. Other entries in this series:
1 Timothy 2:12, which says in no uncertain terms that women are not allowed to hold authority over a man, ever. The only way a woman is allowed to hold any position of authority is if there are only women subordinate to her. It seems reasonable to assume that 'man' doesn't include male children, so I suppose women could be teachers, but they probably need to be careful of teaching high school aged boys, who knows where the cutoff between man and boy is exactly. 1 Timothy 2:12 goes further to say women should "remain quiet" and 1 Corinthians 14:34-35 builds on this saying it is shameful for women to speak in church. If there is anything they want to learn they can ask their husbands when they get home.
|Pic found on freethinker.co.uk|
But it's not just the passage from Titus which tells women to be submissive to their husbands, 1 Peter 3:1,5, 1 Corinthians 11:3, Colossians 3:18, and Ephesians 5:22-23 all give this same message, that women should be submissive to their husbands. But it is not just that, women are clearly portrayed as second class citizens in other ways. 1 Timothy 5:13 says that young women are gossips and busybodies, so they need to be married and have children to stop this behavior. 2 Timothy 3:6 says that women are weak, burdened with sin, and led astray by passions. Finally, in Revelation 20:2 a bride is portrayed as a gift from her father to her new husband, clearly the woman is being portrayed as a commodity.
But it's not all bad for women, in exchange for all of that Ephesians 5:25 instructs husbands to love their wives. Well that pretty much balances things.