Specifically this failure is shown by his not recognizing that the speaking of Ephesians 5:19 is a component part of a larger whole, singing.7I would ask the reader to reread this quotation very carefully. The implications of these words are far reaching.
The reciprocal singing of the passage involves more than speaking, but it does involve speaking. The speaking involved, as our brother ably notes is the speaking which teaches and admonishes (Colossians 3:16). Well, if the teaching and admonishing by reciprocal singing is an authorized composite action (and obviously it is, in that it consists of more than one part), then every component part of that composite action is also authorized. One of those composite parts is speaking.8(In reading this article, I am convinced in the last sentence of this specific quote, the author meant to say, "One of those component parts is speaking.")
What is the sense of speaking needed in the woman translator situation? Why, the very same kind of speaking which is authorized in Ephesians 5:19--speaking which teaches, admonishes, and praises God.10The fact of the matter is, the kind of speaking authorized in Ephesians 5:19 is that which is reciprocal in nature, as well as, "speaking which teaches, admonishes, and praises God." Is this element of reciprocity equally binding in "the woman translator situation?" Is it true or false that the "component parts" are not limited by the constraints and restrictions imposed upon the composite (total situation)?
Is there authority for sung or unsung speaking? The passage specifies the former, but it is a broader category which includes the latter. If you are authorized to speak a message in song (the whole), you are authorized to speak the message (a part within the whole).11Here we see a direct appeal to the component element argument. We are told that even though the passage specifies speaking by singing, it is a "broader category which includes the latter," that is, speaking which is not singing. So, here we have an inspired specific which is not limited to the thing specified! If this is the case, then why did Paul SPECIFY anything?
Has our brother never heard some of the talking that passes for singing by brethren who are sincerely doing the best that they can do? Are they to shut up entirely because of their musical inabilities?13This is given to buttress the argument just made: Though Paul specified speaking by song, there is a broader category including "unsung speaking." Our brother refers to what he calls "talking that passes for singing by brethren who are sincerely doing the best that they can do." I ask one question: Does God consider the above scenario as "talking that passes for singing" or "singing and making melody in" their heart to the Lord? After all, He is the One that is to be pleased -- not man.
What about the mute who signs his singing? To him his signing for singing is the same as his signing for non-singing talking? Will our brother tell him to cease singing by signing unless he can add some-thing to his singing to distinguish it from talking by signs? Incidentally, Thayer says that the word ado which is translated as "singing" may also mean chant.14First, let me say I have always believed that God accepts the signing for singing by the mute. He does not demand that which one is incapable of doing because of physical impairment. My brother and I both agree to this, I am sure.
The same objecting brother also indicated that we have proven too much in showing that there is authority for a woman to teach since Paul says she is not allowed to teach (I Timothy 2: 12). The problem here is that Paul did not say she is not allowed to teach at all, but that she is not allowed to teach over men or in any other way to exercise dominion over men.16Let us look closely at what I wrote. In the paragraph preceding the one to which our brother refers, I established that "speaking," "teaching," and "admonishing" were authorized (Eph. 5:19; Col. 3:16). I then wrote, "Therefore, we conclude that component part number three is correct -- a female is authorized to speak and teach in an assembly containing men."17
But there is a problem with this conclusion. Unless the thing authorized is restricted or modified in some way, this deduction places the apostle Paul in a position in which he contradicts himself! In 1 Timothy 2:12, Paul wrote "But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence." Here a woman is forbidden to "teach" (didasko) a man. But in Colossians 3:16, he commands a woman to teach (didasko) in a specific circumstance in which reciprocity is to exist, which situation implies the presence of men -- thus Paul commanded a woman to teach men!18My argumentation is clear. I stated "a female is authorized to speak and teach in an assembly containing men," but there had to be certain limitations or PAUL WOULD BE GUILTY OF CONTRADICTING PAUL! The apostle Paul did place certain limitations on the woman being authorized to speak and teach in an assembly containing men. Thus, PAUL DID NOT CONTRADICT PAUL!
NOTE: Our lectureship theme next year will be THE HOME.
The dates will be July 26-30, 1998.
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