WOMEN KEEP SILENT, WIVES SUBMIT

1Co 14:34  Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law.

Eph 5:22  Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.

These two verses and some similar ones have been twisted and misused to the point of gross injustice to the women of God’s church.  The hierarchy system and those who deeply and zealously enforce it have stolen God-given rights intended for a Christian woman.

“Women keeping silent,” and “wives submitting” are two different subjects, but they are so deeply interwoven into the scriptures that I think they have to be addressed side by side.  The truth of this subject has to be understood by the end time church by both men and women, but especially by men.  As we wake up from our sleep, Matthew 25:5, we need to practice God’s Word correctly.

Mat 25:5  While the bridegroom tarried, they ALL slumbered and slept.

Notice that it says, “They ALL slumbered and slept.”   “They” equal the virgins.  If you are a virgin, you have been asleep.  If you have not been asleep, you are not a virgin, period.  There is NO in-between.

Let’s start to dismantle this yoke or burden that is heavy to bear that has been placed on women by Satan and his male coworkers.  Today is September 29, 2001 as I start to write this paper, and speaking of burdens placed on women by Satan, the situation for women in Afghanistan under the Taliban is about as horrific, disgustingly sick as it can get.  They are slaves to Satan’s male hierarchy system with apparently no rights at all.  God is moving to open the door for some of these women to obtain salvation in the first resurrection.  Read Revelation 7:9 and 14.

Rev 7:9  After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands;

Rev 7:14  And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

If you are a woman in the current church of God, you have been painted with the same broad brush of male domination just like the women of Afghanistan and other Muslim countries, except that Satan has put a different twist on it.

Let’s start to ask some probing questions of God’s Word.  First, are all females painted with the same Satanic brush?  That is not what God’s word says.  Look at 1 Corinthians 14:34-35.

1Co 14:34  Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law.

1Co 14:35  And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.

The women who are to keep silent are married women.  They are supposed to ask their husbands.  (What if the husband is a tare or atheist?  Maybe things should be discussed in a church group or she would be left out.)  So that does not apply to the women who do not have husbands.  This is a key to understanding this whole subject.

The phrase “under obedience” is Strong’s #5293 meaning primarily, “to subordinate…”  Now go to Ephesians 5:21-22.

Eph 5:21  Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.

Eph 5:22  Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.

The phrase “submitting yourselves” in verse 21 and 22 is also Strong’s #5293, meaning “subordinate.”  In verse 22 it says “Wives subordinate to your husbands.”  Here again all women in the church can’t be lumped in the same category.  If you do not have a husband, this is not direct instruction to you.

Are wives expected to do anything husbands are not?  Verse 21 says be subordinate one to another.  Is the subordination that a wife is supposed to exhibit any different from what two men should show to each other?  We are ALL subordinate to Christ.

These verses are used by the King James translators as a source of hierarchism.  Look at the definition of “subordinate” in the dictionary.  Webster’s II New College Dictionary says it means “to put in a lower rank…”  The word “submit” used in the King James verse by the translators means “to surrender or yield (oneself) to the will or authority of another…”  You men better take a very close look at that if you are one of the people who want to lord it over your wife or other women or other men for that matter.  Your wife is a lower RANK than you, that is all.  She does not have to bend to your will.  In the majority of cases at this time, a man’s will would be from Satan.  Rank #1 is the Father, #2 is Christ, #3 a husband, #4 a wife.  It is rank, not forcing someone to bend to your will.  Christ does not force us to bend to His will.  He tries to guide us to it.  He will finally force the rebellious to bend to His will when they are executed.  Go to 1 Peter 3:1, 5, and 7.

1Pe 3:1  Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives;

1Pe 3:5  For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands:

1Pe 3:7  Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honor unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.

The word “subjection” in verses 1 and 5 is the same Greek word, Strong’s #5293 meaning “to subordinate, (be lower in rank).”  I say again that the subject is RANK in God’s sight, not domination by one over another, not the woman bending to the husband’s will.   In verse 7, are not husbands and wives rated the same here?  Husbands, let God’s Word stand and do not try to change it.  If we are willing to accept God’s Word as our guide, then it is clear that He has placed a rank system in the family relationship.  There is a reason for this.  Someone has to be in charge in the home to be the leader.    Notice the reason in the church which can also apply to the home.

In 1 Corinthians 14:26-40, the issue is not men versus women, IT IS ORDER VERSUS CONFUSION.  Look at verses 26, 33 and 40.

1Co 14:26  How is it then, brethren? when ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying.

1Co 14:27  If any man speak in an unknown tongue, let it be by two, or at the most by three, and that by course; and let one interpret.

1Co 14:28  But if there be no interpreter, let him keep silence in the church; and let him speak to himself, and to God.

1Co 14:29  Let the prophets speak two or three, and let the other judge.

1Co 14:30  If any thing be revealed to another that sitteth by, let the first hold his peace.

1Co 14:31  For ye may all prophesy one by one, that all may learn, and all may be comforted.

1Co 14:32  And the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets.

1Co 14:33  For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.

1Co 14:34  Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law.

1Co 14:35  And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.

1Co 14:36  What? came the word of God out from you? or came it unto you only?

1Co 14:37  If any man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord.

1Co 14:38  But if any man be ignorant, let him be ignorant.

1Co 14:39  Wherefore, brethren, covet to prophesy, and forbid not to speak with tongues.

1Co 14:40  Let all things be done decently and in order.

Could this subordination between husband and wife go back to the Garden of Eden?

Gen 3:16  Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.

“Rule” is Strong’s #4910 meaning “to rule (have, make to have) dominion…”  Here again, there is no evidence that a man is to FORCE his wife to bend to his will (submit).  It is clear that is there is no agreement between husband and wife that the husband would have the final say.   He also has to accept final responsibility if the decision is wrong.  In some cases in a family’s experience, this may indeed force the woman to submit, but this should be the exception, not the rule.  This is not the way of life of a hierarchist husband who has to force his wife to submit to his Satan inspired will.

I think it would be better to postpone making any decision at all if either party is so strongly against whatever the proposed action under discussion might be unless it is an extreme emergency.

We men better have one thing firmly placed in our minds, Philippians 2:12.

Phi 2:12  Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.

This is intensely more important than rank or anything else.  Other humans have to have their opportunity to go one on one with God with no one else in between.  God has set this order of activity in the family as well as in the Church.

Now we can start to see how this applies to the instruction about a wife not necessarily all women to keep silent in the church.  We will look at places later where women DO speak in church.  Go to 1 Timothy 2:11-13.

1Ti 2:11  Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection.

1Ti 2:12  But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence.

1Ti 2:13  For Adam was first formed, then Eve.

The word “woman” in both verses is Strong’s #1135 meaning “a woman, especially, a wife.”  Here again wives are singled out, not every woman is included.  The word “subjection” is Strong’s #5292 meaning “subordination…”

The key to this whole issue to keep order and not have confusion is in verse 12.  The phrase “usurp authority” is Strong’s #831 meaning “to act of one’s self, i.e., (fig) dominate – usurp authority over.”  THIS IS THE KEY.  The wife is not to take over the husband’s job.  If there is a subject that they both know, then it is the husband’s job to teach it at church.  That does not mean a wife cannot insert bits of knowledge that would be applicable to the subject in the dialogue that follows a teaching by someone at a Sabbath assembly.  The bottom line here is that the wife cannot take over the husband’s job.  There has to be ORDER, NOT CONFUSION in the church as well as in the home. Another verse that applies to husband and wife relationships as well as church relationships is 1 Peter 5:3.

1Pe 5:3  Neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but being examples to the flock.

The phrase “being lords over” is Strong’s #2634 and means “to lord against, i.e., control, subjugate – exercise dominion over (lordship), be lord over, overcome.”  Isn’t the wife God’s heritage?  Where do we as men get off being tyrants over our wives? God’s Word says directly to be EXAMPLES.

Men and women both need to learn to fit inside the boundaries that God has set for us.  That is the only way we can obtain real Christian growth in the family as well as in the Church.  Satan has so deceived us (and God has allowed it) with his hierarchy systems that it will be hard for us to grasp the proper way, but we will slowly get it as we awaken from our sleep, Matthew 25:5, as I said earlier.  If we have not spiritually been asleep, we are not a virgin, period.  Read 1 Corinthians 14:26-31.

1Co 14:26  How is it then, brethren? when ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying.

1Co 14:27  If any man speak in an unknown tongue, let it be by two, or at the most by three, and that by course; and let one interpret.

1Co 14:28  But if there be no interpreter, let him keep silence in the church; and let him speak to himself, and to God.

1Co 14:29  Let the prophets speak two or three, and let the other judge.

1Co 14:30  If any thing be revealed to another that sitteth by, let the first hold his peace.

1Co 14:31  For ye may all prophesy one by one, that all may learn, and all may be comforted.

1Co 14:33  For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.

1Co 14:40  Let all things be done decently and in order.

You language experts out there probably could construe this to be an all male set of scriptures. “Brethren” in verse 26 is Strong’s #80 meaning “(the womb), a brother (lit or fig) near or remote (much like,) – brother.  The pronoun “him” is used a couple of times.  “Man” in verse 27 is Strong’s # 5100 meaning “some or any person or object- a(kind of) any(man) thing, thing at all…”

If you lean toward the hierarchy, you may jump on this bandwagon really quickly, do not be too hasty.  Let’s go over this and some other verses.  If we are true end time Christians, the Bible has to be our Guide.  We have no permission to reject, twist, or pervert scriptures in any way.  Let’s go through the verses above and ask some questions.

Paul asks in verse 26, “How is it, Brethren, when you come together.”  Is this an all male church or was Paul addressing the congregation exactly the same way we do?  We today October 11, 2001 do not address the congregation as brethren and “sistern.”  For instance, when we say the Denver brethren did so and so, we as members of the church know that it means men, women and children.  Has God caused this to be this way and had Paul to write it down? You bet He has.  This is the “subordinate” rank issue in action that we covered earlier about women being a lower rank than men just like men are a lower rank than Christ.  This is simply God’s way of dealing with this issue on a daily basis and have it built into our lives.  The male gender is pushed forward when speaking of a mixed congregation, we simply do not say “sistern” when speaking of a congregation we say “brethren.”

We generally speak of mankind, not womankind when speaking of the human race.  The very next phrase in this verse substantiates this.  “Every one” is Strong’s #1538 meaning “each or every, any, both each(one), every (man, one, woman particularly.”

“Doctrine” in verse 26 is Strong’s #1322 meaning “instruction…”  “Tongue” is Strong’s #1100 meaning “a language (specially one naturally unacquired)…”  “Revelation” is Strong’s #602 meaning “disclosure…”  “Interpretation” is Strong’s #2058 meaning “translation…”

The very nature of these manifestations of the Holy Spirit demands that they be spoken by the person whom God has granted the knowledge.  The last sentence of verse 26 pushes forward what God is really talking about here: ORDER VERSUS CONFUSION, NOT men versus women.  Verses 33 and 40 do the same thing.

Continue in verse 31.  In these three places where “all” is used, Strong’s # 3956 means “all, any, every the whole …”   Any man who refuses to give a woman her rightful position in a church assembly will have a lot of explaining to do to Christ at the resurrection.  What you would be doing is forcing women to “submit” or bend to your will when in reality all God requires is that they be subordinate a lower rank.  What the end time church has to acquire is the knowledge of when is it in compliance with God’s Word for women to teach yet keep order and not have confusion.

It is very clear that when a wife and a husband have the same knowledge, the husband is to present it to the congregation. And he is required to teach her at home, if she wants additional information, 1 Corinthians 14: 34-35.

1Co 14:34  Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law.

1Co 14:35  And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.

It does not say that she cannot have a revelation or an interpretation at church and not speak it.  It also does not say that she can’t be a prophetess and prophesy in church.  Why ARE there prophetesses, if they cannot reveal what God has shown them?  And this revealing requires that they talk.  Where would they talk if not in church, out in the woods talking to a tree?

Act 21:9  And the same man had four daughters, virgins, which did prophesy.

Luke 2:36  And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher: she was of a great age, and had lived with a husband seven years from her virginity;

In Acts, the word “prophesy” is Strong’s #4395 meaning, “to foretell event, divine, speak under inspiration…”  In Luke the word “prophetess” is Strong’s #4398 meaning “a female foreteller or an inspired woman…”

Okay, men, what do we do with this information?  Stay hell bent in our wrong applications of God’s Word or let the Holy Spirit have its way and lead us into the proper understanding of God’s Word?  Go to Acts 2 for some more enlightening information.

Act 2:1  And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.

The word “all is Strong’s #537 meaning “absolutely all or (sing) every one- all (things) every (one) whole.”

Acts 1:14  These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.

Notice here that women were included in this congregation.  This was the Day of Pentecost and they were having a church assembly.

Act 2:2  And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.

Act 2:3  And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.

Act 2:4  And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

They all received the Holy Spirit.  It does not say it was men only who received the Holy spirit and spoke in another language.  What is going on here?

Act 2:17  And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:

Peter thought it was the Last Days.  Daughters (women, girls) will prophesy.  Why did Peter say this?  Because the women in that Pentecost assembly were prophesying.  That calls for speaking aloud in the church assembly or in the yard or a public space.  It should be clear for you die-hards, hierarchists, that women can teach or speak in church.  Acts 2:18 says women will be prophesying, that is, speaking or teaching.   Prophesying is no more than a form of teaching.  This prophesying makes a point or points and after it happens, we have learned new facts.

Act 2:18  And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy:

Remember a few pages back in 1 Corinthians 14:26 we covered the term “brethren,” Strong’s #80, which I said was speaking of the congregation.   Look at Acts 2:29 and 37.

Act 2:29  Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulcher is with us unto this day.

Act 2:37  Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?

“Brethren” here is the same word, Strong’s #80.  “Men“ in both verses is Strong’s # 435 meaning “a man, (prop. as an individual male) –fellow, husband, man, sir.”  See how God distinguishes between men and the rest of the congregation if he wants to?  Brethren here would include the women and children of both sexes since the boys would not be husbands or men.  Study 1 Corinthians 11:2-16.

1Co 11:2  Now I praise you, brethren, that ye remember me in all things, and keep the ordinances, as I delivered them to you.

1Co 11:3  But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.

1Co 11:4  Every man praying or prophesying, having his head covered, dishonoreth his head.

1Co 11:5  But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with her head uncovered dishonoreth her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven.

1Co 11:6  For if the woman be not covered, let her also be shorn: but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her be covered.

1Co 11:7  For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man.

1Co 11:8  For the man is not of the woman; but the woman of the man.

1Co 11:9  Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man.

1Co 11:10  For this cause ought the woman to have power on her head because of the angels.

1Co 11:11  Nevertheless neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord.

1Co 11:12  For as the woman is of the man, even so is the man also by the woman; but all things of God.

1Co 11:13  Judge in yourselves: is it comely that a woman pray unto God uncovered?

1Co 11:14  Doth not even nature itself teach you, that, if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him?

1Co 11:15  But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory to her: for her hair is given her for a covering.

1Co 11:16  But if any man seem to be contentious, we have no such custom, neither the churches of God.

Verse 3 shows the subordination (rank) that is in place from the Father to the women.  Verse 16 seems to say this is speaking of a church assembly.  Verses 4-5 make no distinction between men and women.  They are both treated as equals in the praying and prophesying again I would ask the question would not this prophesying be in a church assembly of some sort. Why do it in the back room where no one would hear it.  If it was not a formal church assembly, it was no doubt some sort of worship or teaching situation where praying and prophesying would fit it.  In other words, it is public, not in the privacy of your own home.

Gal 3:28  There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.

Galatians 3:28 makes it clear there is no difference in male and female in Christ.  1 Peter 3:7 makes no distinction between husband and wife in the marriage as being heirs together in the search for eternal life.

1Pe 3:7  Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honor unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.

We need to get our thinking straightened out about wives being silent in church and submitting to hierarchist husbands and men in general.

It is very clear from God’s Word that God insists on order, not confusion in the church as well as in the marriage.  That is why He has set in motion or in place this thing of subordination (being lower in rank).  Every angel, every human, every demon, and even Christ is subordinate or lower in rank to someone above.  Once the Holy Spirit grants us this knowledge, we will see that it is no big deal anyway.  None of us can obtain spiritual happiness without finding and fitting into the niche that God and Christ have designed for us.

With Satan dominating our thinking as we contently sleep on in the end time, Matthew 25:5 shows the cause of all this hierarchy issue anyway.  There is no indication that Christ has a problem in being subordinate (lower in rank to the Father).

Satan being the god of this world pushes his own agenda of taking over the Father’s job; and with his ability to totally dominate our minds and actions he pushes his agenda through men who will submit to his way of thinking.  Witness the hierarchy status of Hitler as a good example.  Another current example is Osama ben Laden and his ambitious plan exalting his despicable religion onto the whole world.  Notice how women are treated in Afghanistan and other Muslim nations today Oct 13, 2001.

I’m sure there is much more knowledge we will acquire from God’s Word as we start to put this into practice as the end time church wakes up.  Action on our part is what is needed.

Published January, 2011

© Edgar Y. Bennett
PO Box 509
Black Hawk, CO 80422 USA
edgar@solidrockspeople.org
www.solidrockspeople.org