Specific Text: 1 Timothy 2
There's no way to sugar coat it. Today's chapter is not popular with most people. Many people would just as soon skip this passage and others like it and just concentrate on passages dealing with grace and love and God's mercy. Even worse, some people point to these types of teachings and conclude that since they seem so contrary to our society and culture, the whole Bible must be irrelevant and obsolete.
But you can't do that. You're called to conform your life to God's Word... to all of God's Words, even (especially!) the parts of it that are so much different than what is popular or convenient. If you start cutting everything out that either doesn't fit modern culture or doesn't seem scientifically possible, you will quickly discover you have nothing left.
We don't have the time or space here to give this topic the full treatment it deserves, but we can lay down a few boundaries. First of all, neither this passage or any other part of the Bible ever portrays women as being lesser creatures than men. Both are full image bearers of God. Secondly, and perhaps most importantly, the Bible NEVER EVER gives men permission to abuse women; quite the opposite in fact. Men are called to love their wives in the same way Christ loves the church.
Paul here is not attempting to put women down, hold them back, or treat them as unequal members of the church. He is not telling them they have no role in the church, as in fact both his and Jesus' ministry would not have been possible without the gifts and leadership of key women. Paul is simply continuing to work out a concept that began in the Garden of Eden: both men and women are equals, yet God has given both different roles. Within that context, God has called men to be leaders in the church and home.
The key lesson for your life today is to strive to conform your life to God's Word even if you don't always fully understand it or even like it. Remember who God is: unchanging, completely wise, and full of love, and remember that His ways are far above your own. Know that He wants what is best, and know that whether you are male or female, He has gifted you to do great things for Him and His church.
Prayer For The Day: Dear Father in Heaven; Thank you for your Word, even when I don't always like it or it seems so different than what I think it should be. Thank you for the good gifts you have given to me, and help me to use them in a way that honors and glorifies you. Amen.