Crazily enough, these verses mean exactly the opposite of what you and I have been lead to think.
I learned in my own Greek class that whenever a group was mixed, male and female, only the male gender was used to describe the group. If you were looking at a group of, let’s say, six girls and one boy, you would use male gendered language to describe that group, if you were speaking Koine Greek.
Now, just think about that for a minute, as you review famous Bible phrases and passages
What if we’ve been trying to unlock 1 Timothy from a modern, western, Age of Enlightenment perspective when the letter itself is based upon the logic, letter-writing customs, and Greek idiosyncrasies of the ancient near east?
The Chiastic Structure or Pattern shows a different emphasis in 1 Timothy, one in which proto-gnostic teaching was becoming a problem that must be addressed head on. Timothy was to make sure everyone was properly educated before they were entrusted with being deacons and elders, teachers and leaders within the church.
The part people often miss is that Paul wanted women in the classroom, learning scripture, theology, Greek and Hebrew, reading and writing, and presumably teaching and evangelizing, right alongside the men.
This is a 36-page paper, exhaustively studying 80 of the 329 instances this word has been seen, so far, in the ancient record. The 80 instances she chose to study occur within the timeframe of Paul’s letter to 1 Timothy, therefore offer the most accurate renderings known to Paul, and used in his day.
Surely some of you are asking why. Why would God say the Levites were to be priests? Guess what. There is an answer to that, but it’s a triggering kind of story, if you have a low tolerance for evil and violence.
Paul shook his head and muttered to himself. He could feel his temperature rise, even against the close heat of the small room he’d been given, to spend the night. But, there was no mistaking what he was reading, as the simple, clay oil lamp flickered its light across the papyrus. “God!” he thought. “God! Why!”
God made woman to share with man a mutual concern and responsibility, a shared commission to govern the earth, with united commitment to each other that reflected God’s own eternal three-in-one being of equal deity and power.