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Can a women be in authority?

Submitted: 3/31/2006
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Question: ITimothy 2:12 says,'But I suffer not a woman to teach nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence.' I was wondering if you brethren could bring me some clarity regarding this verse. Is Paul telling us that women should not hold an office in the church that would place her 'over' a man? For example, should a woman be a pastor, or should a woman be a preacher, or should a woman be allowed to be a Sunday school director? Please help me to better understand this verse within its context.

Answer: We discussed this passage in our article called 'The Role of Women in the Local Assembly.' In it we wrote: 'The issue Paul was discussing in this passage was not whether or not women could speak at all, but what leadership structure is proper for a local assembly. He was not ruling out the possibility that a women may have insights and understandings that would bless and edify the assembly. He was simply saying that because women are more easily deceived than men, they are not to serve as the overseers of an assembly. This principle is reiterated in Paulís declarations that the head of woman is man and that wives are to be subject to their husbands.' The complete article can be found on Shelf 4 of the Apostolic Free Library at http://www.gloriouschurch.com/html/Role-of-Women-in-Assembly.asp