the chid bearing

Discuss Biblical and theological support for concept that Bible teaches equality between sexes.

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the chid bearing

Post by Metacrock » Thu Feb 14, 2008 7:58 pm

V15 The Childbearing



15 But women will be preserved through the bearing of children if they continue in faith and love and sanctity with self-restraint.

Here we have one of those "because of the angels" kind of verses. There have been many suggestions as to what it means. Cleary it does not mean that women must have babbies to be saved! That interpretation isn't even worth refutting. Another possiblity is suggested by many that "bearing of children" should read "THE Childbearing" as a reference to the incornation of Christ. While that is possible, and has been my former position, I now reject it. It is linguistically possible, but not likely. The definate article equlas a designation of a quality so instead of "the child bearing" we should probably read "child bearing" or "bearing of children" as the NAS has it. An other reason is becuase Paul never mentions Mary, nor does incorporate her into his thoelogy. It seems unlikey that he would have as the only reference to her, this kryptic statment that only obliquely refurs to her. If he felt that she was influential enough to salvation to stand as some sort of Theotakus as in latter centuries, he would probably have mentioned it in a more direct way. Besides, it's just to ktrypic to deal with as an argument. There is a more practical solution.

Many urge that it means women will be kept safe through childbearing. Yet we know good Christian women have died the world over while giving birth. So this is probably not what he means. He probably does refur to actual soteriological salvation. He is of course, not saying that the act of giving birth is what brings a woman salvation, nor is he saying that women must give birth to merit salvation. The term "through" above, as in "brought through child bearing" is dia which does litterally mean "to bring through" as the children of Israel were broght through the red sea, or one brings a thread through the ey of a needle, or one goes through a painful experience, or women go through chld birth. The point is it is not saying she will be saved "by means of" childbirth. It is not saying that child birth is the means of her salvation, but rather that it is an ordeal through which her election to the Kingdom will reamin secure.

The Gnostics believed that childbrith was evil. Women who gave birth where bringing more spirit into the world to trap it in matter. They were doing the wrost thing, serving the evil demiurge the false god who created the world. Many Gnostics identified the God of the OT with the false god who mistook himself for the all powerful. The snake of the garden was the enlightener who came to help Eve remember her divine nature!

Dr.Fred Layman
Wesley Center online


The Gnostics held a dualistic view that emphasized the perfections of the heavenly world while deprecating everything which belonged to this world. The world of matter is completely under the control of demonic forces and is beyond redemption.13 This cosmological dualism was paralleled with an anthropological dualism whereby man's spirit was exalted while his body was devalued.14 Man's spirit is actually a spark of the divine spirit which had become imprisoned in a material body. Baptism into Christ meant for these Gnostics that the spirit was set free from and enabled to transcend bodily existence. The spirit was no longer under the power of this world, the flesh, nor the demonic, but was fully possessed by the divine spirit.




For many Gnostic groups being born was a sin, and giving brith a bigger sin:


The Hypostasis of the Archons(The Reality of the Rulers)

Gonosticism Society
Nag Hammadi Library

Translated by Bentley Layton

And the carnal woman took from the tree and ate; and she gave to her husband as well as herself; and these beings that possessed only a soul, ate. And their imperfection became apparent in their lack of knowledge; and they recognized that they were naked of the spiritual element, and took fig leaves and bound them upon their loins. Then the chief ruler came; and he said, "Adam! Where are you?" - for he did not understand what had happened. And Adam said, "I heard your voice and was afraid because I was naked; and I hid." The ruler said, "Why did you hide, unless it is because you have eaten from the tree from which alone I commanded you not to eat? And you have eaten!" Adam said, "The woman that you gave me, she gave to me and I ate." And the arrogant ruler cursed the woman. The woman said, "It was the snake that led me astray and I ate." They turned to the snake and cursed its shadowy reflection, [...] powerless, not comprehending that it was a form they themselves had modeled. From that day, the snake came to be under the curse of the authorities; until the all-powerful man was to come, that curse fell upon the snake. They turned to their Adam and took him and expelled him from the garden along with his wife; for they have no blessing, since they too are beneath the curse. Moreover, they threw mankind into great distraction and into a life of toil, so that their mankind might be occupied by worldly affairs, and might not have the opportunity of being devoted to the holy spirit. Now afterwards, she bore Cain, their son; and Cain cultivated the land. Thereupon he knew his wife;...




William C. Robinson, Jr.,
in The Nag Hammadi Library

"According to Gnostic teachings "the soul is a female (the Greek word for soul, psyche, is feminine). Originally she is a virgin, androgynous in form, living in the presence of the heavenly Father. When she falls into a body, however, she is defiled; after abandoning her Father's house and her virginity, she falls into sexuality and prostitution, and is abused by the wanton adulterers of this carnal world. Desolate and repentant, she prays to her Father for restoration, and he hears her prayer. She is returned to her former condition, and restored to androgynous union with her brother. This union is achieved through spiritual marriage; the bridegroom comes down to the bridal chamber, and the soul and her bridegroom 'become a single life', inseparable from each other. Thus the ascent of the soul to the Father is accomplished, and the soul is again at home in heaven."






St Epiphanius speaks of his own (second century) experiences with a certain Gnostic sect. There were two kinds of Gnostics, the docetists, who believed that matter is evil and so one must keep a strict assceticism, and the libretines, who believed that since we trapped in evil matter, we might as well enjoy it. Both kinds were apparently present at Ephesus, since some of the errant teachings include dietary ristrictions, and others seem to include sexual imoorality. I suspect,however, that this dichotomy is simplilstic, and both ideas were mixed in with many groups. Be that as it may Ephiphanius attests to the abhorance of birth and other practices. But of course this is a latter developed Gnosticism. Still, it will serve to isstrate the general breadth of Gnostic belief:


Paul Harrison,

Gnosticism releasing the light within

Ph. D. in environmental science from Cambridge University.
freelance journalist


The Gospel of Eve is known only from one or two short quotations from the great heretic-hunter Epiphanius (310/20 - 402), bishop of Salamis. He tells us that it was used by certain Gnostic sects with lurid and bizarre beliefs and sexual practices. Epiphanius' testimony carries weight, because he admits that he himself fell in among them. He reports that they shared their women in common. They celebrated sexual orgies in which partners were swapped. Coitus interruptus was the normal practice. Semen was collected and offered to the Lord as the body of Christ, before being consumed. The Gnostics also consumed women's menstrual blood.The theology behind the lechery was anything but world-affirming. It varied from one sub-sect to another. In outline the material world was ruled by an evil "archon" or intermediate deity. The bodily flesh belonged to this archon, and would not be raised up.

Harrision footnotes:

Wilhelm Schneemelcher, New Testament Apocrypha, James Clarke & Co-Westminster/John Knox Press, Cambridge and Louisville, 1990, and Philip Amidon, The Panarion of St Epiphanius, Oxford University Press, 1990.)




Some of Epiphanius' descriptions of the rites of this cult are so grosteque I cannot reproduce them here,but they invovled canibalizing the unborn. Such was their lack of respect for brith.


Thus it is not a great streach to supposse that this group at Ephesus taught something along the lines that a woman is expossed to great danger in childbirth.Of course everyone knew that in that day, but this would include spiritual danger and the intervention of supernatural forces. Paul is simpley saying a woman's salvation is intact through the experience of childbirth. He dos add "if they continue in faith and love with sanctity and self restraingt." Now Paul is not saying that women must earn God's protection through holy living. But what else is going to say? He's trying to quealch a movment toward immorality in the chruch, and immoral living does open us up to spirtual dangers. He's just saying that if women stay in a close walk with the Lord they will be protected from the spirutal dangers. He's speaking of the consequences of immoral living, not of meriting God's protection. Nor is he saying that women die in childbith as a judgement form God, he's rebuking and refutting the Gnostic claims to that effect.

When we take account of the cultural context at Ephesus, we can better understand the cutlurally bound nature of Paul's words. Moreover, it's not just the sitaution with their foes that give us deepr insight into Paul's meaning, but better understanding of the Pauline circle itself.


the charactoristics of the oppents as mapped out by Paul are very reminicient of Gnosticism.I listed a chart of them on page 1. From that chart, all the charactoristics are imporant and point to gnsoticism, although most are so veg as to be meaningless. A couple of them, however, are just too obvious not to spell out a gnostic beilef.
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Gem
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Re: the child bearing

Post by Gem » Fri Feb 15, 2008 10:16 am

The background on gnosticism was very interesting and educational.
Thanks ;)
1 Timothy 2:15 (YLT) and she shall be saved through the child-bearing, if they remain in faith, and love, and sanctification, with sobriety.
I believe "the child-bearing" refers to the formation of Christ in a woman.

Somewhat different but parallel thought by Paul linking childbirth with the formation of Christ/AKA "sanctification" is Gal 4:19
Galatians 4:19 (YLT) my little children, of whom again I travail in birth, till Christ may be formed in you,
I seriously considered whether 1 Tim 2:11-15 is instructions on how to run a MARRIAGE.

In greek there are not separate words for “husband” and “man” nor for “wife” and “woman”. The greek “aner” is translated husband or man and the greek “gune” is translated wife or woman. The discretion/interpretation of the translator comes to bear on HOW it is translated in each case.

Could this be a parallel passage?
1Cor 14:35 where the translators chose “husbands” in this case:
“And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women(WIVES) to speak in the church.”

And I think 1 Pet 3:1-6 (though written by Peter) could be a parallel instruction on how to handle a (difficult) marriage.
A husband will simply not listen nor hear a wife who is finger wagging didactic nor attempting to forcefully exercise authority over him. It is counterproductive for a wife to deal with a husband in a manner which comes across as “parental”. It won’t “fix him”. To the contrary; he will- at least- dig in his heels if he doesn’t get downright abusive. God knows that!

What we do know for SURE is that the instructions of the passage are not meant to demean, disrespect, or put down women!!!
GOD is NOT LIKE THAT!
And nothing in HIS WORD will do that!

If I am understanding a passage as a put down of women, the problem is with my understanding, not with God’s Word! His Word reflects HIS character and GOD's heart toward HIS daughters (and sons) is loving and protective.

Here are a couple of ways of taking the passage of 1 Timothy 2 which are consistent with God’s loving character and HIS honor and respect for HIS daughters:

1. Think about church history-
how women were sidelined by the hierarchy, and sometimes excoriated. The passage can be taken as a prophetic proclamation about the church… that some day woman will be saved/restored/made whole in a reversal of the fall’s consequences (”he shall rule over you”). She will be restored to her status as a co-heir with Christ, restored to her queenly, ruling position BESIDE Adam rather than being the mistress/subordinate/underling to Adam’s “master-hood”

2. Think about marriage-
I personally was guilty of “husband idolatry”. I put him on the throne and I was an obedient servant, while he micromanaged and controlled down to trivial detail. My desire was for my husband (to please him, to satisfy him) and he ruled over me. The passage can be taken as a PROMISE for the marriage of ANY CHRISTIAN WOMAN- that she will be saved/restored/made whole in a reversal of the fall’s consequences (”he shall rule over you”) back to her garden intimacy with the Lord. Could such restoration for her be conditional upon her remaining with her husband?? Notice “if THEY continue in faithfulness…” (1 Tim 2:15) This interpretation would speak quite firmly and with HOPE to the Christian woman contemplating divorce from a husband who is sinning against her in various ways.

Gem
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What if Eve had not followed Adam out of the Garden?

Post by Gem » Fri Feb 15, 2008 10:29 am

What if 1 Timothy 2:11-15 is prophetic for "everywoman"?
What if the passage shows how she can be restored to the Garden... through "the child-bearing"?

Here are some clips from Katharine Bushnell's God's Word to Women
123. Eve was, then, the first woman to forsake her (heavenly) kindred for her husband. She reversed God’s marriage law,—”Therefore shall a man forsake his father and his mother, and cleave to his wife.” Had Eve remained steadfast with God, Adam might through the double influence of God and Eve, have returned to God. Marriage might have been consummated by Adam, the husband, forsaking the devil, his father, and cleaving to his wife, thus returning, like the prodigal he was, to the heavenly Father’s home.

124. God spoke warningly to Eve at this time, telling her that she was inclining to turn away from Himself to her husband, and telling her that if she did so her husband would rule over her. The correct rendering of the next phrase of Genesis 3:16 is this: "Thou art turning away to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee,"—not as it has been rendered, "Thy desire shall be to thy husband."

95…… Now please rub your eyes carefully, search the latter end of chapter three of Genesis, and point me the place where the Bible teaches that Eve was expelled from Eden. I cannot find such teaching. I find that the one whose duty it was to “till the ground,” was expelled; the one who was “taken out of the ground” was expelled; but I find no account of the sex which was to bear children “in sorrow,” in the story of the expulsion; and I choose to believe that something of the odors of Eden have enveloped motherhood ever since creation. Yet Eve must soon have abandoned Eden to follow Adam (see pars. 122, 123, 137).
The salvation cannot be Christian salvation because it is conditional upon the behavior of “they”.

I think “she” refers to Eve.

I think “they” refers to women (all women who continue in faith, love, holiness whether single, married, childless, etc.)

So, this is the rendering which I think reflects the meaning of the verse:

She (Eve) will be saved (restored) through bearing the child if they (women) continue in…

will be saved/restored” is in the future.
Restored HOW?
I think it refers to the verse before*

I think in any woman who allows Jesus to be formed in her and “continues in…” is restored to the garden state of intimacy with the LORD (as Eve enjoyed before the transgression). And I HOPE that draws my "Adam" back toward the garden as Bushnell poses had Eve not followed Adam out...
Had Eve remained steadfast with God, Adam might through the double influence of God and Eve, have returned to God. Marriage might have been consummated by Adam, the husband, forsaking the devil, his father, and cleaving to his wife, thus returning, like the prodigal he was, to the heavenly Father’s home.

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Re: the child bearing

Post by Metacrock » Fri Feb 15, 2008 10:41 am

Gem wrote:The background on gnosticism was very interesting and educational.
Thanks ;)
1 Timothy 2:15 (YLT) and she shall be saved through the child-bearing, if they remain in faith, and love, and sanctification, with sobriety.
I believe "the child-bearing" refers to the formation of Christ in a woman.

Somewhat different but parallel thought by Paul linking childbirth with the formation of Christ/AKA "sanctification" is Gal 4:19
Galatians 4:19 (YLT) my little children, of whom again I travail in birth, till Christ may be formed in you,
that's a plausible view.
I seriously considered whether 1 Tim 2:11-15 is instructions on how to run a MARRIAGE.

In greek there are not separate words for “husband” and “man” nor for “wife” and “woman”. The greek “aner” is translated husband or man and the greek “gune” is translated wife or woman. The discretion/interpretation of the translator comes to bear on HOW it is translated in each case.
that's right, good points.
Could this be a parallel passage?
1Cor 14:35 where the translators chose “husbands” in this case:
“And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women(WIVES) to speak in the church.”

I think it's pretty well proven that Paul was quoting the other guys when he supposedly said "let the women keep slient" then refutes it when he says "what, has the word of God come only to you?" he's saying that to the guys who want to silence women.


And I think 1 Pet 3:1-6 (though written by Peter) could be a parallel instruction on how to handle a (difficult) marriage.
A husband will simply not listen nor hear a wife who is finger wagging didactic nor attempting to forcefully exercise authority over him. It is counterproductive for a wife to deal with a husband in a manner which comes across as “parental”. It won’t “fix him”. To the contrary; he will- at least- dig in his heels if he doesn’t get downright abusive. God knows that!

I agree that all the talk of submission is not about husband outranking the wife, but cooperation and love, a good witness.

What we do know for SURE is that the instructions of the passage are not meant to demean, disrespect, or put down women!!!
GOD is NOT LIKE THAT!
And nothing in HIS WORD will do that!

right on! :mrgreen:



If I am understanding a passage as a put down of women, the problem is with my understanding, not with God’s Word! His Word reflects HIS character and GOD's heart toward HIS daughters (and sons) is loving and protective.[/quote]


I didn't put it over as a put down of women did I? I said it's about reigning in the gnostic teacher women who wanted to bring the authority they had as Gnostic into the church. Paul wants them to wait until they learn. That's not putting down women, although it may have been humbeling for those women.

Here are a couple of ways of taking the passage of 1 Timothy 2 which are consistent with God’s loving character and HIS honor and respect for HIS daughters:

1. Think about church history-
how women were sidelined by the hierarchy, and sometimes excoriated. The passage can be taken as a prophetic proclamation about the church… that some day woman will be saved/restored/made whole in a reversal of the fall’s consequences (”he shall rule over you”). She will be restored to her status as a co-heir with Christ, restored to her queenly, ruling position BESIDE Adam rather than being the mistress/subordinate/underling to Adam’s “master-hood”

2. Think about marriage-
I personally was guilty of “husband idolatry”. I put him on the throne and I was an obedient servant, while he micromanaged and controlled down to trivial detail. My desire was for my husband (to please him, to satisfy him) and he ruled over me. The passage can be taken as a PROMISE for the marriage of ANY CHRISTIAN WOMAN- that she will be saved/restored/made whole in a reversal of the fall’s consequences (”he shall rule over you”) back to her garden intimacy with the Lord. Could such restoration for her be conditional upon her remaining with her husband?? Notice “if THEY continue in faithfulness…” (1 Tim 2:15) This interpretation would speak quite firmly and with HOPE to the Christian woman contemplating divorce from a husband who is sinning against her in various ways.

those are good thoughts thanks for the post! :mrgreen:
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Re: the child bearing

Post by Metacrock » Fri Feb 15, 2008 10:46 am

Gem wrote:The background on gnosticism was very interesting and educational.
Thanks ;)
1 Timothy 2:15 (YLT) and she shall be saved through the child-bearing, if they remain in faith, and love, and sanctification, with sobriety.
I believe "the child-bearing" refers to the formation of Christ in a woman.

Somewhat different but parallel thought by Paul linking childbirth with the formation of Christ/AKA "sanctification" is Gal 4:19
Galatians 4:19 (YLT) my little children, of whom again I travail in birth, till Christ may be formed in you,
I seriously considered whether 1 Tim 2:11-15 is instructions on how to run a MARRIAGE.

In greek there are not separate words for “husband” and “man” nor for “wife” and “woman”. The greek “aner” is translated husband or man and the greek “gune” is translated wife or woman. The discretion/interpretation of the translator comes to bear on HOW it is translated in each case.

Could this be a parallel passage?
1Cor 14:35 where the translators chose “husbands” in this case:
“And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women(WIVES) to speak in the church.”

And I think 1 Pet 3:1-6 (though written by Peter) could be a parallel instruction on how to handle a (difficult) marriage.
A husband will simply not listen nor hear a wife who is finger wagging didactic nor attempting to forcefully exercise authority over him. It is counterproductive for a wife to deal with a husband in a manner which comes across as “parental”. It won’t “fix him”. To the contrary; he will- at least- dig in his heels if he doesn’t get downright abusive. God knows that!

What we do know for SURE is that the instructions of the passage are not meant to demean, disrespect, or put down women!!!
GOD is NOT LIKE THAT!
And nothing in HIS WORD will do that!

If I am understanding a passage as a put down of women, the problem is with my understanding, not with God’s Word! His Word reflects HIS character and GOD's heart toward HIS daughters (and sons) is loving and protective.

Here are a couple of ways of taking the passage of 1 Timothy 2 which are consistent with God’s loving character and HIS honor and respect for HIS daughters:

1. Think about church history-
how women were sidelined by the hierarchy, and sometimes excoriated. The passage can be taken as a prophetic proclamation about the church… that some day woman will be saved/restored/made whole in a reversal of the fall’s consequences (”he shall rule over you”). She will be restored to her status as a co-heir with Christ, restored to her queenly, ruling position BESIDE Adam rather than being the mistress/subordinate/underling to Adam’s “master-hood”

2. Think about marriage-
I personally was guilty of “husband idolatry”. I put him on the throne and I was an obedient servant, while he micromanaged and controlled down to trivial detail. My desire was for my husband (to please him, to satisfy him) and he ruled over me. The passage can be taken as a PROMISE for the marriage of ANY CHRISTIAN WOMAN- that she will be saved/restored/made whole in a reversal of the fall’s consequences (”he shall rule over you”) back to her garden intimacy with the Lord. Could such restoration for her be conditional upon her remaining with her husband?? Notice “if THEY continue in faithfulness…” (1 Tim 2:15) This interpretation would speak quite firmly and with HOPE to the Christian woman contemplating divorce from a husband who is sinning against her in various ways.


those are good points.I've read Bushnell's book many times. It's one of my favorite books. she was great. I have a tribute to her on my woman pages. I wanted to write a biogrophy of her. But there is a woman in Dallas doing it, so I will let her do it. I may not ever publish on that toopic. It may be better for women to do it themselves. I think comp men need to see women beign strong and assertive. But I have pages on the egal issues on my website.
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Re: the chid bearing

Post by Gem » Fri Feb 15, 2008 11:01 am

I didn't put it over as a put down of women did I?
Not at all! You are coming across matter of fact and gentle.
Christian women need to meet brothers like you!
It helps us in our recovery. :)
and that it not off topic...
( "she shall be RESTORED" 8-) )

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Re: the chid bearing

Post by Metacrock » Sat Feb 16, 2008 11:35 pm

Gem wrote:
I didn't put it over as a put down of women did I?
Not at all! You are coming across matter of fact and gentle.
Christian women need to meet brothers like you!
It helps us in our recovery. :)
and that it not off topic...
( "she shall be RESTORED" 8-) )

thank you for saying that sis! the ECA women taught me that. :mrgreen:
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Re: the chid bearing

Post by Gem » Sun Feb 17, 2008 11:02 pm

Then they are good role models.
May their tribe increase :D

Just for the record...
I'm having a nice chat hereabout the details of "she shall be saved through the childbearing if they continue"

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Re: the chid bearing

Post by Gem » Mon Feb 18, 2008 12:41 pm

I have a question.
Here is a link to the interlinear for 1 Tim 2
"she shall-be-being-saved through the childbearing if-eve they-should-be-remaining in faith and love and HOLYing with sobriety"

she- singular----> they-plural
what I am wondering is if one can determine gender from the "they"?
eg, in Italian it is sometimes possible to determine if a group of "they" is female by the use of a feminine plural.
Can one determine this in the greek here (or not)?

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Re: the chid bearing

Post by KR Wordgazer » Sun May 18, 2008 8:24 pm

I agree with Gem. I think the most accurate way to read the passage is:

She (Eve) will be saved (restored, redeemed) in childbearing (either through the bearing of the [Christ] Child, or simply through having descendants who come back to God through Christ) if they {the descendants she bore, in particular the women as her representatives) continue in faith and love. . .
Wag more.
Bark less.

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