Sent: Sunday, September 09, 2001 1:50 PM
Hello Mr. Knight,
>Most likely we'll never agree that "teach", "pray", and
>three different words describing three distinct and separate actions,
Mr. Knight, for clarity, lets drop the word "pray" and not deal with it. I
am not saying that praying is the same as prophesying or teaching although
I suppose praying can be a form of teaching if done out loud and reveals
Prophesying is a form of teaching. It's not just something I want it to
be. Paul says prophesying edifies and those who receive it can learn from
it. That's what the purpose of teaching is. It's so people can
learn. Webster agrees that prophesying is teaching. It's like the word
"hit". one that hits is one or something that strikes someone or something
with something. However there are many forms of hitting. Prophesying is
just one form of teaching.
>nor that women are permitted to "pray" and "prophesy" only in
>the church but never to "teach", so let me just make the following blunt
>statements to set the record straight (as you evidently missed some of my
>Prophesy, pray, and teach are three distinct and separate words describing
>three distinct and separate actions.
Mr. Knight, as I said, I won't deal with the prayer issue in order to
simplify this discussion. While you say prophesying and teaching are
distinct and different, you don't say how or demonstrate it.
One more time, let me give you Webster's 1828 Dictionary's definition of
teach, "<<<To instruct>>>; to inform; to communicate to another the
knowledge of that of which he was before ignorant. To tell; to give
intelligence. To suggest to the mind."
He defines "prophesy" as "In Scripture, to preach; <<<to
religious doctrines; to interpret or explain Scripture or religious
subjects; to exhort."
Now Mr. Knight, does Webster define "teach" as "to instruct"?
define "prophesy" as "to instruct"? Unless you are willing to
Webster's own words, you must respond with a "yes".
So if teach means "to instuct" and prophesy means "to instruct" is not
prophesying a form of teaching? Mr. Knight to deny this is to deny that
things equal to the same thing are equal to each other.
>Women are under authority of their husbands,
But Mr. Knight are you not implying all women are under the authority of
>who are under authority of the church,
Mr. Knight, is this not contradictory? Is not the "church" simply the body
of believers including male and female? So if what you say is so, are you
not saying the man is under the authority of the "church" which includes
It is my understanding of the Scriptures that the husband is indeed the
head of the wife and that Christ is the head of the husband (1 Cor
11:3). I don't see the church as being the head of the husband. It takes
both husband and wife, both men and women, both male and female to make up
> who are under authority of Christ, Who is under authority of God. I
> disagree with you that "Let a woman learn in silence, in all
> subjection. And I do not allow a woman to teach nor to exercise
> authority over a man, but to be in silence" permits women to prophesy
> verbally in church, to speak before a church assembly, to teach a man, or
> to have authority over a man.
Yes Mr knight, I am quite aware that you disagree with this. But for you
to believe your way it seems you have to say that what the Bible doesn't
say. You say when Paul said women can prophesy, he meant at home, but the
Scripture doesn't say that. You say it doesn't mean talking. Can you give
one Scripture of people prophesying without talking? You say the word
"expound" doesn't mean teach. You imply that Huldah didn't teach men. You
imply Anna didn't speak in the Temple before everyone there. You say a
woman giving her prophesy to her husband isn't teaching or passing
intelligence to him, which is what teaching is. You have to ignore Paul's
own definition of what prophesying means. You say "prophesying means
"learning". Can you produce one Scripture or Dictionary definition to that
Paul says this of what prophesying does,
(1 Cor 14:4 NASB) "...one who prophesies edifies the church."
Now Mr. Knight, does Paul distinguish between men and women prophesying
here? Does he say there's a difference between a woman propheysing and a
Paul also says this of those who prophesy (NCV version),
(1 Cor 14:31) "You can all prophesy one after the other. In this way all
the people can be taught and encouraged."
Mr. Knight, this is the Scripture that you seemingly think means
prophesying means learning. I used this version in order to make it
clear. It clearly shows that "all", that includes women can prophesy
thereby teaching the people in the ekklesia.
Webster defines "edify" as, "To instruct and improve the mind in knowledge
generally,and particularly in moral and religious knowledge, in faith and
holiness. To teach or persuade."
Here we see direct evidence that the word edify means to teach or instruct,
which is a definition of teach and it comes from prophesying. Do you deny
>You make the correct and vital claim that women can learn during
>"prophesy": Paul says this of one who "prophesies" in 1 Cor 14:31,
>may all prophesy one by one, that all may learn..."
But Mr. Knight, I am not saying just women learn during prophesying. Both
men and women learn during prophesying. And it's not the one prophesying
that learns, it's the ones that are listening to the one prophesying that
learns. That's why Paul said,
(1 Cor 14:4 NASB) "...one who prophesies edifies the church."
One who edifies teaches the "church" according to Paul.
>Now Mr. Knight, does not Paul show that people "learn" from one that
>prophesies? In fact the word "learn" in this verse is the same Greek
>translated "learn" in 1 Tim 2:11.
>1Ti 2:11 Let3129 0 the woman1135 learn3129 in1722 silence2271 with1722
>1Co 14:31 For1063 ye may1410 all3956 prophesy4395 one by one2596 1520,
>that2443 all3956 may learn3129, and2532 all3956 may be comforted3870.
>but then ignore that women are not permitted "to teach" "a man",
>exercise authority over a man".
Mr. Knight this is why I wanted for us to settle upon the meaning of
"prophesying" prior to getting into the verse you say I'm
ignoring. Basically every commentary I have, every English, Greek and
Hebrew Dictionary and Paul define prophesying as teaching. The Bible shows
a woman prophetess teaching a priest of Israel and therefore the greatest
king of Israel. Yet you keep implying all of these sources are wrong simply
because you seemingly want to translate the verse that says, "But I suffer
not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in
silence" as meaning God made a Law that a woman can't teach a man and that
teaching a man is usurping some kind of authority.
While I have not ignored that verse, it seems you have ignored my comments
on it. And say a woman can't teach a man all the while saying a wife can
reveal her prophesy to her husband at home. It seems you ignore that Paul
and Webster shows prophesying is teaching. It seems you ignore Huldah,
Anna and Priscilla. And another thing you seemingly do is imply that
somehow teaching a man is usurping his authority. Please Mr. Knight, do
explain how that can be. When God used Huldah and Priscilla to teach men
was He breaking His own Law? Where in the Bible does it say a man's
authority is to be the only one to speak in church? What Law in the Bible
says a woman can't teach a man?
The verse in question does not say God doesn't allow a woman to teach. It
supposedly shows Paul saying he didn't allow a woman to teach nor usurp
authority over a man. Is Paul God? Does he have the right to make
Law? But to hold onto this, you must make prophesying "learning", which it
is not and I never said it was, and you must make "expound" not be
teaching. You must ignore much Scripture that shows women teaching men.
>Yes, as you aptly note, women can learn during "prophesy", which (by your
>own argument) is precisely what Paul meant when he said women could
>prophesy with their heads covered in church.
Mr. Knight, I never said women could learn during prophesy. I never said
prophesy was learning. Here is exactly what I said, ""Paul says this of one
who "prophesies" in 1 Cor 14:31, "For ye may all prophesy one by one, that
all may learn...Now Mr. Knight, does not Paul show that people "learn" from
one that prophesies? In fact the word "learn" in this verse is the same
Greek word translated "learn" in 1 Tim 2:11."
As you can see I didn't say "prophesying" is learning. I said people, not
just women, learn from the one that prophesies. I do pray you simply
misread what I said.
>By your argument, if "prophesy" means "to learn",
Mr. Knight this is not my argument. It seems you are putting words in my
mouth. I do pray it's unintentional.
> then permitting women to "prophesy" in church means nothing more than
> permitting women "to learn" in church.
No sir, that's not what I said and that's not what prophesy means. It
seems to me that one would have to ignore all dictionary and Biblical
explanations to hold onto this erroneous belief. Prophesying does not mean
"learning", it means teaching.
>It can never mean that women are permitted "to teach" a man, because that
>would make a liar out of Apostle Paul in his letter to Timothy.
Mr. Knight, it seems that you are more worried about making a liar out of
Paul than you are of making a criminal out God. God used women to teach
men and yet you seem to imply that Paul has authority over God. Would not
your belief make Paul a liar because he praised Priscilla for teaching
Apollos? Was God an accomplice to breaking His own Laws?
>I should close here, because any further blabbering from me may obscure
>rather than clarify the point, but this is an important enough point to
>take that risk.
>It's not clear that we'll ever agree that "to teach" is different from
Mr. Knight, I am going to agree with my Greek, English and Hebrew
Dictionaries, Paul, Noah Webster and God when He used a woman prophesying
to teach the greatest human king in Israel's history when it comes to the
definition of "prophesying". It seems it's you that will have to disagree
with all of these sources to hold onto this improper definition of prophesy.
> But to focus a bit on where we do agree, which is that "to
> means both "to divine" as well as "to learn",
No Mr. Knight, we don't agree on this. Can you present any dictionary or
Biblical definition that prophesying means to learn?
>then we may agree that if we only had Paul's statement:"1Co 11:5 (ASV) But
>every woman praying or prophesying with her head unveiled dishonoreth her
>head; for it is one and the same thing as if she were shaven" to go by,
>this Scripture would be confusing--it COULD mean "to teach" as well as
>learn". IF we had no other writings from Paul to clarify which
>of "prophecy" he was referring to ("to teach" or "to
learn"), then we
>might conclude that this permits women "to teach" (or speak) in a church
Mr. Knight, why do you not have trouble ignoring Scripture that shows women
>But since we do know that Paul also wrote "Let a woman learn in silence,
>in all subjection. And I do not allow a woman to teach nor to exercise
>authority over a man, but to be in silence", then we've narrowed "to
>prophesy" down to only one meaning: "to learn".
No sir we haven't! It seems you have simply put words into my mouth and
you have defined the word "prophesy" no one else has. Please Mr. Knight
answer a few questions for me concerning this verse you think means a woman
can't teach a man.
1. Where does Paul get his authority to say this?
2. If Paul doesn't allow a woman to teach why did he say women could teach
3. If Paul meant for a woman to not speak why didn't he say, "let the woman
4. Why is the same Greek word in 1 Tim 2:11-12 translated "peaceable" when
applying to men in 1 Tim 2:1-2?
5. How can Paul say women can't teach and he commends Priscilla for doing
6. Why did God use women to teach men? Does God change?
7. When Paul tells Timothy, "let the woman learn in silence", does that
mean Timothy wasn't letting her learn in silence up to that point? Was
Timothy preventing women from learning in silence? Why would Paul say,
"let" when you are obviously implying "make" or "require"?
Would not the
word "let" imply that Timothy was preventing women from doing something
they wanted to do?
>Thank you again, James, for taking the time to present your exegesis, as
>it has been very instructive and illuminating.
On the contrary Mr. Knight I have been the one illuminated in this
exchange. I thank you for your thoughts, but I suggest that you read what
I say a bit more carefully next time so that you don't misread my saying
something I didn't say, i.e., prophesying means learning.
Thanks again for your effort and thoughts,
Sent: Sunday, September 09, 2001 1:39 PM
Hello again Mr. Knight,
Concerning Mr. Earnest's comment, " It's not hard to answer the questions, but
impossible to answer to those wishing the answers to conform to their own ideas as to what
those answers should be. Can they be answered? Sure, in a million ways, but
which of those answers are the truth. As I told James, the only way to get the truth
is through the original source", you said "Well said, Ray!
I also agree with Mr. Earnest on this statement as for his admonition as to where the
truth lies. However, while he may can give many answers to my questions, it's the
Bible that will determine the truth of the matter. While he may imply it's the other
person that bears the "quality" of wishing the answers conform to their own
ideas, he and you would do well, IMHO, to remember the others to whom you are referring
may very well see you in the same "light." I would think the remedy would
lie in one side "proving", at least, to themselves what their belief is.
And that is done by sword sharpening sword and not answering questions.
James, it took a bit of pondering your following
statement to try to make any sense out of it, but I failed:
- "Yes you are correct that the word
"teach" is in the chapter in question. I apologize for not being more
clear than I was. Of course I do acknowledge the word "teach" as being in
the chapter as I gave my understanding of what it means further into my reply.
- What I am saying here is the context has nothing to do
I may be wrong here, but it seems that your entire argument boils down to defining
"prophesy" as "speaking" and claiming that "teaching" does
not include "speaking".
No Mr. Knight, that is not what I mean at all. I mean that 1 Tim 2 does not have
speaking as it's subject, but living a quiet and peaceable life. While the word
"teach" is used once in the entire chapter, it is not the subject of 1 Tim 2.
There are several words that are used more than this that aren't the subject
iow, it seems to me that you have these two words
backwards. It seems from most of the replies that The Apostle Paul made the
role of women in a church assembly very clear to them, so it's not clear what the source
of your confusion is.
Mr. Knight I appreciate your obviously thinking you can
read confusion in my mind, but I assure you, I can explain my understanding and I don't
have the slightest belief I'm confused in this matter. I realize that reading emotion in
written form is a bit difficult. Many times we tend to read our own
"feelings" into what someone else says. Perhaps this is the case here.
I also agree that the Apostle Paul made the role of women in a "church"
assembly" very clear, but I don't think you see it.
Rather than continuing to hammer our heads against the
wall regarding what is and what isn't "speaking" and whether or not women should
speak before a church assembly, maybe it would be more constructive if you would just tell
us what your ultimate objective is.
Mr. Knight, have you engaged in this exchange for this amount of time without knowing what
my goal is? What subject did you think you were debating? How could you
possibly debate a submect w and not know what the other person's stand ? I, possibly
foolishly, took it for granted that you knew I was opposing your "teaching",
"prophesying", "exhorting" and "edifying" that women cannot
speak in the ekklesia. But by your own words it seems I was wrong.
Maybe we would get more mileage out of the discussion
if we viewed this from your perspective and then worked backwards to see how it fits the
Scripture? This is not to belittle the Scripture, but merely to attempt to
understand better where you're headed with it.
Mr. Knight, I simply wanted to define the word prophesy. It's defined by basically
every dictionary I have as teaching something in some form or another. Yet you seem
to be so adamant on your position that women can't speak, it appears necessary for your
belief, to oppose Paul, Noah Webster, all the Greek and English Dictionaries I have, and
Biblical examples that prophesying is a form of teaching in order to make 1 Tim 2 align
with your belief. If Webster says prophesying is a form of teaching and Paul says
the same thing and we know that prophetesses, i.e., Huldah taught priests of Israel and
therefore Israel's greatest king, by what authority do you contradict them? If you
are denying the definition of the very man that is given credit for putting together our
first dictionary and the man wrote 1 Tim 2, perhaps it's you that may be confused?