Women, men, and hermeneutics 02

Jimmy Dunn on the list of names in Romans 16 which attached prominent roles of responsibility and ministry to various women (Phoebe, Priscilla, Junia, etc.):

“Another thought worth considering is the fact that houses were doubling as both churches and households. This could explain part of the tensions caused by women’s ministry. For as wife within a household, the woman was bound to defer to the male head of the household. But as a prophet within the church, she might be called to exhort or instruct others, including her husband. Some such circumstances seem to be behind the tensions between 1 Corinthians 11.2-16 and 14.34-36.” (James D. G. Dunn, Romans (The People’s Bible Commentary), p. 183)

I guess it explains why personally the tension becomes less (if not none at all) if both the husband and the wife lead the church/ministry or if the woman is not married (male bias alert!).


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