What really should be the role of Women in the congregations?
Cofty the women who are oppressed in the WT are the wives of over-worked elders. They pay the price for other people's expectations
I agree with this, as do his children pay the price.
But as to women having it easy don't make me laugh. No one has it easy in the Watchtower. Women are the workhorses....and domestic violence is endemic.
Cofty Try being a young married man with a family who is expected to care for all his family responsibilities as well as everything a normal publisher does and prepare two or three meeting parts every week, conduct the Watchtower study on a Sunday, attend never-ending contentious elder's meetings, visit the elderly and sick and be at the beck-and-call of everybody who expects you to sort out their latest family drama or petty argument with another publisher.
But the important point here is men have a choice.
If you think being busy and needed is hard....try being put down, lonely, ill or disabled, unwanted and jobless.
No. A busy life is a blessing, believe me.
The lengths people go to in order to make the Bible not say what it so obviously says
Tarting up patriarchal Scriptures to appear enlightened and in harmony with twenty-first century views on women sounds desperate - kind of like trying to defend a violent man's behaviour by playing around with the meaning of words. Why would you want to do that? Paul's misogyny was consistent with his background and plans for the church. Women had to keep their place - and that was, under the control of their husbands. He had little to say about unmarried women's recourse to having their questions answered.
Women's role as set out from the creation of Eve, in Jewish society and then reiterated by Paul is to be in subjection to men. A domestic slave, a property, and in the case of concubines a sex slave and an incubator.
In many places across the world they are still treated this way and worse. I just wish the people that choose to defend religion from the relative safety and freedom of western worlds would remember this.
Quote from Cofty:
"A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet. For Adam was formed first, then Eve." - 1Tim.2:11-13
The instruction to Timothy to keep women out of teaching and leadership is unambiguous.
It looks to me like Paul is there saying that a Woman should not teach a Man or assume authority over a Man. Paul also adds clarification to the Man's role elsewhere as it applies to his behaviors and conduct. It would be comforting to believe that Women had participated in the training of youth and engaged in discussion within the get-togethers that those early congregations enjoyed.
Are there are any concrete examples of how things were managed in those early congregations and what sorts of participation and responsibilities the Women may have had?
It appears that the age of Manhood in those times was 20 years while the age that a marriage may be entered into was 18 years for males.
The lengths people go to in order to make the Bible not say what it so obviously says Tarting up patriarchal Scriptures to appear enlightened and in harmony with twenty-first century views on women sounds desperate - kind of like trying to defend a violent man's behaviour by playing around with the meaning of words. Why would you want to do that?
Why would we want to do that Steve2? It's rather like Cofty's excellent thread on blood transfusions where he showed in ancient Israel blood was not sacred in itself but in its sacrificial value to remove human sins and therefore there should be no ban on blood to save life because nobody dies when they donate blood.
Over many pages this was proved from scripture, using ideas that the JWs have just missed, or deliberately overlooked, e.g. animals that were already dead could be eaten even though they were full of blood, it being impossible to bleed an animal after it's been dead only a few minutes.
Precisely in this manner those of us who have been abused by this religion have been showing that in ancient Israel Deborah was a judge and prophetess, holding two of the highest jobs in the land. In early Christian times Phoebe was a deacon. Philips's four daughter's were prophetesses and so on.
Just as with blood issue threads we find it necessary to point out the inconsistency of the JWs in cherry picking the scriptures that suit them to prove their doctrines and missing glaring facts that women in Bible times were not silent at all.
Most of the other Protestant churches have taken these scriptures on board and decided that from a twenty-first century point of view Paul was inconsistent with many Bible accounts of the work of women and therefore they've appointed women priests in their churches. What I believe Old Navy was asking in his OP was, why haven't JWs done the same?
We may well ask!
THE BIBLE IS CONTRADICTORY.
GOD INSPIRED THE BIBLE WRITERS TO CONTRADICT EACH OTHER (2 Timothy 3:16).
Can women be church leaders?
YES THEY CAN:
- Judges 4:4:
"And Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lapidoth, she judged Israel at that time."
- Acts 18:26:
Priscilla was a servant of the church.
"And he began to speak boldly in the synagogue: whom when Aquila and Priscilla had heard, they took him unto [them], and expounded unto him the way of God more perfectly."
- Romans 16:1:
Phoebe was a deaconess.
"I commend unto you Phoebe our sister, which is a servant of the church which is at Cenchrea":
(" I commend you to our sister Phoebe, a deaconess of the church." - The Revised Standard Version)
- Romans 16:7:
Junia was an apostle.
"Junia.......of note among the apostles"
****"Junia" (Romans 16:7) Some translators were so upset at the idea of a woman apostle that they replaced "Junia" with "Junias." The problem with this is that although "Junia" was a common woman's name at that time, there is no evidence for "Junias" as a man's name. Bart D. Ehrman, Misquoting Jesus (2005), p.185
NO THEY CAN'T:
They cannot speak, teach, or have authority over men.
- 1 Corinthians 14:34-35:
"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. 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."
- 1 Timothy 2:11-12:
"Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence."
PAUL CONTRADICTED HIMSELF - Romans 16:1,7 versus 1 Corinthians 14:34-35 & 1 Timothy 2:11-12.
No wonder why there are approximately 47,000 Christian denominations with different beliefs as of 2017 according to the Center for the study of Global Christianity.
Meals will always need to be prepared for visiting WT dignitaries.
Bathroom will always need to be cleaned.
[Oops! Let the stoning begin. My old JW misogyny is showing!]
Doc, imagine if the OP had been something like 'what should be the role of black/Hispanic/Asian people in the congregation'. Then your reply would have been what, casual racism? I know you're only joking but casual sexism is difficult to understand if you're a man and have not been subject to it for decades in the cult.
DOC - We're not in the cult anymore, so you get the "privilege" of "making your own damn sandwiches"! LOL.
I don't want ANY role in any congregation or any religion, thank you very much!
Glad this nonsense is behind me.