Dr. Couch, I see that from time to time you receive criticism from younger women about your views on women teaching men, or teaching mixed groups. I know of some very talented women teachers who are teaching men. How do you answer?
ANSWER: It does not matter what they are doing. It does not matter how much talent they have as teachers. It matters what Paul, the inspired apostle, says. 1 Timothy 2:12-15 is as clear as it can get! Women have wonderful abilities and ministries given them by the Holy Spirit but to teach over men, or to have pastoral authority, these roles are not given to women. As a principle, men are more objective than women and less emotional. This is how the Lord has constructed the differences between the sexes. In Paul's argument that women are not to "teach or exercise authority over a men." He adds the reason why. He writes "The woman (Eve) being quite deceived, fell into transgression" (1 Tim. 2:14). "Quite deceived" is one Greek word. She was REALLY deceived by Satan, the Greek text notes! Adam was simply deceived, though he was responsible for the family and the culpability was greater against him because he was the first created.
I find that a lot of younger Christian women get upset about this issue because they have been brainwashed by the culture. "No matter what the Bible says, we want it our way!" And, they do not hold the inspired Scripture with its full authority. They are not willing to do what it says—to obey its principles.
So, often I take a hit but I sleep well at night because I want to obey what God has said!
Verse 15 tells us how the woman is to be elevated by the Lord. She is "saved" or protected through child bearing, that is, by having children that gives her important responsibilities and that keeps her in check. But too, she must continue in strong faith, love, and sanctity, with self-restraint. These last values mentioned here will be greatly honored by the Lord. They are spiritual values that allow the woman even to go before the man in spirituality. We see this in women. They are more spiritual when they follow God's patterns and don't try to be men, in the affairs of the culture and in the affairs of the church. But it's hard for women to see this. And that proves Paul's point. Women are more emotional about this discussion. They do not relate objectively to what Paul is saying. They get upset quickly about what the Lord is teaching the church. This is not Dr. Couch theology. It is Pauline theology!
The great Greek scholar A. T. Robertson notes: "Paul has in mind that child-bearing, not public teaching, is the peculiar function of woman with a glory and dignity all its own." Women today do not see the greatness of pouring themselves into their children. But what a privilege in creating spiritually the next generation!
Thanks for asking.
—Dr. Mal Couch (4/11)