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Thread: Should We Use Gender-Inclusive Language For God?

  1. #11
    tWebber NorrinRadd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tabibito View Post
    ...
    Then there is the neutering of such passages as "any man aspiring to be an elder ... must be the husband of one wife." The author is referring to men who want to be elders - the passage has nothing to say about women who want to be elders. So we emasculate (sorry, "neuter") the language to what avail? (aside from having to dream up a whole swathe of invalid excuses for why the neutered passage remains a faithful translation.)
    It does not say, "any MAN desiring..." It in fact uses a neuter term better rendered, "anyone." That's just the way it is.

    Now, the "husband of one wife" part is where the so-called "dream[ing] up... of invalid excuses" comes in: Some NT experts such as P.B. Payne make the case that it is a figure of speech meaning "faithful spouse." That part is debatable. What is not debatable is that there is no masculine pronoun in the passage.
    Geislerminian Antinomian Kenotic Charispneumaticostal Gender Mutualist-Egalitarian.

    "Everybody is somebody's heretic."

  2. #12
    Professor KingsGambit's Avatar
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    I haven't read the work in question but I'm just going off this review here. I fear Murrow has conflated cultural expectations of masculinity/femininity vs. a biblical model of gender differences. This is the same mistake made by some American pastors who have maintained that a godly masculinity involves such things as watching football, shooting guns, etc. I wonder what Murrow would make of the biblical description of David and Jonathan's friendship, which was so intimate that it was better than the love between man and woman. Based on the description in this review, he would probably think it sounds gay. This suggests that we shouldn't feel the need to bend over backwards to make the gospel more male appealing. The gospel is what it is and we shouldn't craft it differently. (I also don't see any reason to think that it's more crucial to reach fathers than mothers. Mothers tend to be closer to their children so one could just as easily argue the opposite.)

    I'm in agreement on the issue of not portraying God as feminine, though.
    For what was given to everyone for the use of all, you have taken for your exclusive use. The earth belongs not to the rich, but to everyone. - Ambrose, 4th century AD

    All cruelty springs from weakness. - Seneca the Younger

  3. #13
    tWebber tabibito's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NorrinRadd View Post
    It does not say, "any MAN desiring..." It in fact uses a neuter term better rendered, "anyone." That's just the way it is.

    Now, the "husband of one wife" part is where the so-called "dream[ing] up... of invalid excuses" comes in: Some NT experts such as P.B. Payne make the case that it is a figure of speech meaning "faithful spouse." That part is debatable. What is not debatable is that there is no masculine pronoun in the passage.
    ει τις εστιν (if someone is) - τις is assuredly a masculine pronoun ... μιας γυναικος ανηρ (assuredly "man" or "husband") - and τις plays against ανηρ as its referent: ανηρ does not double for "person," ανθρωπος does. τις is not only grammatically masculine, it is used as a substitute for a noun that demonstrably identifies a male (ανηρ). μιας γυναικος (of one woman/wife) - is genitive, it assigns a (conceptual) location or relationship. This is elementary grammar.
    και εκζητησατε με και ευρησετε με οτι ζητησετε με εν ολη καρδία υμων

  4. #14
    tWebber Rational Gaze's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Apologiaphoenix View Post
    Is this a good idea...?
    No.

  5. Amen Jedidiah amen'd this post.
  6. #15
    tWebber NorrinRadd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tabibito View Post
    ει τις εστιν (if someone is) - τις is assuredly a masculine pronoun ... μιας γυναικος ανηρ (assuredly "man" or "husband") - and τις plays against ανηρ as its referent: ανηρ does not double for "person," ανθρωπος does. τις is not only grammatically masculine, it is used as a substitute for a noun that demonstrably identifies a male (ανηρ). μιας γυναικος (of one woman/wife) - is genitive, it assigns a (conceptual) location or relationship. This is elementary grammar.
    NIV2011 -- "Whoever..."

    NET -- "If someone..."

    ESV2011 -- "If anyone..."

    NRSV -- "Whoever..."

    ISV -- "The one who would..."

    HCSB -- "If anyone..."

    CEB -- "If anyone..."

    CEV -- "anyone who desires..."

    A few, like the NASB and NKJV, do use "if any MAN..." The NASB concordance shows the meaning of "tis" to be "a certain one, someone, anyone."

    As to the rest, I addressed that. I'll leave you to contact P.B. Payne and correct the errors he makes here:


    Does Paul require that all overseers be men? Actually, Paul
    encourages every believer to aspire to be an overseer: “Here is a
    trustworthy saying: Anyone who aspires to be an overseer desires
    a noble task” (1 Tim 3:1). In Greek, “anyone” is a gender-inclusive
    word, implying an open door to women as well as men. Would Paul
    encourage women to desire an office that is forbidden to them? Paul
    makes it clear that “anyone” is his continuing subject by reiterating
    “anyone” in verse 5 and identifying “anyone” as the subject of the
    parallel list for overseer qualifications in Titus 1:6. Contrary to
    most translations, there is not a single masculine pronoun in any
    of the church leader qualifications in 1 Tim 3:1–13 or Titus 1:5–9.

    What about overseers being a “husband of one wife” in 1 Tim
    3:2, 12 and Titus 1:6, which in Greek is literally, “man of one
    woman”? This text does not say merely “man” but “man of one
    woman”; the whole phrase must be understood together as an
    idiom. Some insist on extracting one word, namely, “man,” and
    arbitrarily isolating it from its context as a new requirement that
    every overseer be a “man.” But this is as nonsensical as arguing
    that since “hit and run” is a felony, “run” must also be a felony.
    Most scholars, including hierarchist scholars, understand “man
    of one woman” to exclude polygamists or sexually unfaithful men
    from being overseers.

    Nevertheless, some insist that the passage also excludes
    women. Reading a double meaning into this idiomatic phrase,
    both an exclusion of polygamists and a universal requirement that
    overseers be men, is unwarranted and would make nonsense of
    most of Paul’s other multi-word requirements for overseers. Must
    all overseers have their “own household” with slaves and multiple
    “children” old enough to “believe” and be in subjection “with all
    gravity”? Furthermore, since 1 Tim 3:11 identifies qualifications for
    women deacons, the same expression, “man of one woman,” in the
    requirements for deacons in 3:12 must not exclude women. Thus,
    reading into “man of one woman” a requirement that overseers be
    male is arbitrary and unwarranted.

    It is simply Greek convention to use grammatically masculine
    forms when referring to groups of people including men and women.
    One excellent pastor-professor who affirms patriarchy
    argues that it is common throughout the Bible for prohibitions
    addressing men also to apply to women. He states, “As is widely recognized, . . . [i]n the absence of other constraints, norms which
    utilize male-oriented terminology ought to be construed, in general,
    as including both sexes in their purview.”

    Jesus’s interpretation of Deut 24 in Mark 10:12 confirms this. The principle of monogamy
    conveyed by “man of one woman” applies equally to men and
    women just as “you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife” (Exod
    20:17) applies equally to a husband or wife coveting a neighbor’s
    spouse. Thus, the most accurate and literal translation of “man
    of one woman” is “monogamous” since it best conveys the Greek
    convention’s inclusive meaning of masculine forms, and since this
    is the natural meaning of this idiom in verse 12.

    See full PDF here. And forgive likely formatting problems owing to copying and pasting from said PDF.

    Both the CEB and CEV translations render the passage "correctly" according to Payne's view. E.g.:


    1Tim 3 (CEB)
    1 This saying is reliable: if anyone has a goal to be a supervisor in the church, they want a good thing. 2 So the church’s supervisor must be without fault. They should be faithful to their spouse, sober, modest, and honest. They should show hospitality and be skilled at teaching. 3 They shouldn’t be addicted to alcohol or a bully. Instead they should be gentle, peaceable, and not greedy. 4 They should manage their own household well—they should see that their children are obedient with complete respect, 5 because if they don’t know how to manage their own household, how can they take care of God’s church? 6 They shouldn’t be new believers so that they won’t become proud and fall under the devil’s spell. 7 They should also have a good reputation with those outside the church so that they won’t be embarrassed and fall into the devil’s trap.
    Geislerminian Antinomian Kenotic Charispneumaticostal Gender Mutualist-Egalitarian.

    "Everybody is somebody's heretic."

  7. #16
    tWebber tabibito's Avatar
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    I'll leave you to contact P.B. Payne and correct the errors he makes here:
    Ah yes ... the old "my scholar is better than your scholar" game.

    Fact: τις is grammatically masculine
    Fact: τις does not indicate the gender of the object in question.
    "Anyone (τις) may hold office." Context does not restrict the parameters of "anyone." (However, logical assessment might lead to the conclusion that e.g. infants are excluded.)
    "Anyone (τις) who holds a passport may enter the country." - the context restricts parameters of "anyone" to passport holders.
    "Anyone (τις) who chooses to do so may become a husband" - the context restricts the parameters of "anyone" to (historically at least) males.
    "Anyone (τις) who chooses to do so may become a spouse" - Context does not restrict the parameters of "anyone."

    1 Tim 5:16 (UBS5) εἴ τις πιστὴ ἔχει χηρας επαρκειτω αυταις, ... - πιστὴ restricts the parameters of τις to female believers, as shown by the ESV translation: "If any believing woman has relatives who are widows, let her care for them ..."
    1 Tim 5:16 (Byzantine Majority) ει τις πιστος ... The grammatically masculine πιστος does not restrict the parameters of τις to males, because πιστος does not necessarily apply exclusively to males. ανηρ, however, does apply exclusively to males.
    Last edited by tabibito; 02-19-2018 at 12:55 AM.
    και εκζητησατε με και ευρησετε με οτι ζητησετε με εν ολη καρδία υμων

  8. #17
    tWebber NorrinRadd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tabibito View Post
    Ah yes ... the old "my scholar is better than your scholar" game.
    No, it's the "I know I am not a scholar, so I'll quote one." These fora are open to all, including us regular folks. Live with it.


    Fact: τις is grammatically masculine
    In addition to what Payne said, and what I noted about various translations, Danker's 2009 Concise Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament p. 353 says it can be masculine or feminine.


    Fact: τις does not indicate the gender of the object in question.

    "Anyone (τις) may hold office." Context does not restrict the parameters of "anyone." (However, logical assessment might lead to the conclusion that e.g. infants are excluded.)

    "Anyone (τις) who holds a passport may enter the country." - the context restricts parameters of "anyone" to passport holders.

    "Anyone (τις) who chooses to do so may become a husband" - the context restricts the parameters of "anyone" to (historically at least) males.

    "Anyone (τις) who chooses to do so may become a spouse" - Context does not restrict the parameters of "anyone."

    1 Tim 5:16 (UBS5) εἴ τις πιστὴ ἔχει χηρας επαρκειτω αυταις, ... - πιστὴ restricts the parameters of τις to female believers, as shown by the ESV translation: "If any believing woman has relatives who are widows, let her care for them ..."

    1 Tim 5:16 (Byzantine Majority) ει τις πιστος ... The grammatically masculine πιστος does not restrict the parameters of τις to males, because πιστος does not necessarily apply exclusively to males. ανηρ, however, does apply exclusively to males.
    AFAICT, Payne does not address ch. 5 anywhere in the linked PDF document, so I'm not completely sure what point you are making. Since the subject of ch. 5 is "widows," then of course 5:16 is about female believers, regardless of the text base. If your point regarding "aner" is about 3:2, then you have not addressed Payne's reasoning, viz. that it is part of a figure of speech, and therefore should not be separated and dealt with on its own. Now, I suspect you disagree with him, and yeah, at that point we are probably left with the irreconcilable "dueling scholars" dilemma.
    Geislerminian Antinomian Kenotic Charispneumaticostal Gender Mutualist-Egalitarian.

    "Everybody is somebody's heretic."

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