For our final week in our co-laborer series, we will be looking at Paul’s communities. Since the rise of modern feminism, there has been a tendency for Western Christians to cherry-pick from Paul’s letters to support their “side” of the debate over women’s leadership in the church. While some cry Galatians 3:28 or Romans 16:7, others retort with 1 Timothy 2:12. And to everyone “their” text seems unambiguous enough to end the discussion. How can Paul be read so differently? Is there a way to take all the data into account? Join us as we investigate what happens when Paul is read in light of the biblical theology we have been developing over the past five weeks.
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SCRIPTURE: Romans 16:1–7; 1 Timothy 2:11–3:1
16 I commend to you our sister Phoebe, a deacon of the church in Cenchreae. 2 I ask you to receive her in the Lord in a way worthy of his people and to give her any help she may need from you, for she has been the benefactor of many people, including me.
3 Greet Priscilla and Aquila, my co-workers in Christ Jesus. 4 They risked their lives for me. Not only I but all the churches of the Gentiles are grateful to them.
5 Greet also the church that meets at their house.
Greet my dear friend Epenetus, who was the first convert to Christ in the province of Asia.
6 Greet Mary, who worked very hard for you.
7 Greet Andronicus and Junia, my fellow Jews who have been in prison with me. They are outstanding among the apostles, and they were in Christ before I was.
11 A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. 12 I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet. 13 For Adam was formed first, then Eve. 14 And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner. 15 But women will be saved through childbearing—if they continue in faith, love and holiness with propriety.
3 Here is a trustworthy saying: Whoever aspires to be an overseer desires a noble task.
CONFESSION OF SIN
Almighty and most merciful Father, we have erred and strayed from your ways like lost sheep.
We have followed too much the desires and devices of our own hearts. We have rebelled against Your holy laws.
We have left undone those things which we ought to have done; and we have done those things which we ought not to have done; and there is no health in us.
O Lord, have mercy on us miserable offenders.
Spare those, O God, who confess their faults. Restore those who are repentant, according to Your promises declared unto us through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Grant, O merciful Father, that we may live a godly and righteous life. To the glory of Your holy name. Amen.
SONG OF PREPARATION
Christ has died Christ is risen
Christ will come again
We have died together
We will rise together
We will live together
The body oh the body
We are the body of Christ
We are brothers and sisters
Through our savior’s blood