Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Exegetical Quibble

I'm snowed under still, but this week looks promising. In my attempt to catch up with what's going on in the Blogosphere, I have an exegetical question/quibble.

Tyler Williams alerts us to the post by Steven Harris at Theology and Biblical Studies: which deals ably with the contentious issue of the Apostle Paul's attitude to women in the church in his post "Silent women in the church?." Steven looks specifically at 1 Corinthians 14 and explores whether the text itself is corrupted, and if not, whether Paul's directives in this passage are meant for all believers at all times, or whether they are specifically related to cultural issues being faced by the church at Corinth.
My question relates to adding "As in all the churches of the saints" to the exegesis of "women should be silent in the churches." Why doesn't [can't?] "As in all the churches of the saints" refer back to "for God is a God not of disorder but of peace." ? This seems just as plausible. Or have I missed something?
This line of thinking is strengthened by the exegetical conclusions of Fee, Keener, and others. But I've not seen this line advocated or pursued, which caution's my confidence in this position. Comments or critiques?

1 comment:

Sven said...

Thanks for linking to my article :)

I argued that Paul's directive that women be silent in the church does not apply universally, but I meant this in the sense that Paul does not envisage that every woman in every church at every time in history should be silent, not least because he does not anticipate this even at Corinth (e.g. he envisages women prophesying, for example).

You're right to point out about 'all the churches of the saints' but again I do not think that this means Paul expects universal female silence, but he certainly does in cases where the behaviour of women is threatening and suberting the divinely-ordained order.

Steven Harris aka Sven