Spiritual Bible Interpretation
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A discussion on women in the church.
15 Jan 2016

 

Should Women Be Silent in Church? September 4, 2009 document REVISED Jan 15, 2016

The following four scripture references talk about women, their relationship, and their required actions towards the church and their husbands.  If taken literally these scriptures imply such things as: women should be silent in church, women are not permitted to speak in the churches, the husband is the leader of the wife, women should learn in silence, women shall be “saved” by having children, women should not teach or have authority over the man, but be silent, and women should not be preachers or pastors.  

1Corinthians14:34-35 “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.”

Ephesians 5:22-23 “Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.”

1Timothy 2:11-15 “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. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.”

1Peter 3:1-7 “Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear. Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price. For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands: Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement. Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.”

Some people read these scriptures and question their literal intent. Some people in history have used these scriptures to usurp authority of women, many times to the detriment of the woman. These scriptures have been used as a reason and excuse for keeping women in subjection to men and out of pastor or religious teaching roles. In today’s world and in America these scriptures are many times over looked and ignored because some people think they were simply written for a different culture and times and meanings have changed since the Bible was written. Or these scriptures are said to be irrelevant for today’s churches since churches have changed in their organization. Or the scriptures are picked apart or re-translated so that the strictness of the woman’s role is toned down. For example some would in error interpret it to mean that the woman really doesn’t need to be silent, it just means she should not argue with the elders of the church. Many times these scriptures aren’t even discussed in churches because they don’t appear to have much relevance for today. Even with the difficulty of these scriptures, these are real scripture quotes, and their message for us should be understood, whether it be for hundreds of years ago or today, and time should not change the meaning. 

1Timothy 2:15 says “...she shall be saved in childbearing”. This scriptures talks about how Eve was deceived and so was in transgression. But the woman shall be saved in childbearing and she also has to continue in life in charity and other “good” things. Mark 16:16 says “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved;” Is Mark 16 strictly talking about men not women? It doesn’t say that this method of salvation only applies to male humans, so we assume all can be “saved” by believing and baptism. These two scriptures contradict each other on how one is saved [regardless of what being saved means]. One says that a woman needs to bear a child to be saved and the other says we just believe and be baptized. Also, if we are to believe and understand this to mean that the woman is saved in childbearing, how is an infertile or barren woman saved? Since 1Timothy implies that a woman has to bear a child to be saved and this doesn’t conform with other scriptures on how one is saved, this raises a red flag concerning how we should interpret 1 Timothy 2. Note the Greek word for “saved” in both Mark 16:16 and 1Timothy 2:15 is the same word and means the same thing.

Isaiah 8:9&13Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts......But the word of the LORD was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little; that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken.”

Isaiah 8 says that the “word of the LORD” is written line upon line so that those who are not weaned from the milk might fall backward and be broken.  What does this mean? The Bible is written so that various interpretations can be contrived from it so we must be weaned from the milk to truly understand the doctrine; which being interpreted spiritually or allegorically means to leave the milk of the word behind. The milk represents the carnal interpretation or literal story. See previous posts that discuss the milk of the word (i.e. April 4, 2015, July 19, 2014, and others) and the document titled “Why does Emmanuel in Isaiah Chapter 7 eat butter and honey?”. These previous posts explain the meaning of milk.   Once one is weaned from the milk they can move on to harder more difficult to digest “food” of the word which gives us a taste [no pun intended] of the real message to be heard. These true spiritual messages of the Bible are hidden beneath the surface.  The messages are within the allegory of the story. 

2Corinthians3:6 “Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.”  

We are to be able ministers, which means we are not to serve what the letter says. The word “letter” means sacred writing or epistle speaking to us plainly. So it says to minister to what the “spirit” says to us through the letter. Where “the spirit” represents a non-physical interpretation.  The Bible can be read word for word (letter or literally), or we can allow the spirit to talk through the testament to show us a spiritual meaning. If we minister to (serve) what the literal words are saying, our understanding will be “killed” through the carnal interpretation. No matter what form (story, poem, letter, etc.) the Bible is written in, the intention of the literature is such that when we are in a spiritual (non-literal/non-physical) mindset a spiritual interpretation will be seen, but if we are in an physical/literal mindset (the carnal mind) we will only see the literal words and contradictions will certainly arise when compared to other scriptures.

Not only will our understanding of the scriptures be “killed” when we read the Bible literally word for word (literal letter of the testament), but our actions from our wrongful understanding will “kill” and not bring life. Now the word “killeth” here in 2 Corinthians, again is not a literal physical death, but is a spiritual (nonliteral) type of death. The death that is spoken of here in 2 Corinthians is a spiritual death of some sort, meaning we are deprived of spiritual life and understanding. So our thoughts and actions from ministering to the “letter” will bring about spiritual death.  

If we now look again at the scriptures concerning women above with this idea in mind, we can see an example of how ministering to the letter (or literal interpretation) could bring about spiritual death for us. By ministering to the letter of the testament (2Cor 3:6), one would think human women are to be silent in church (i.e. religious building where people meet to worship), be in subjection to human men, are “saved” by bearing children, and should be treated as such.  If we look at these scriptures literally we are looking at the message as something for human females to follow rather than a potential deeper spiritual message meant for every person, male or female. Remember the literal interpretation (letter) kills, but the spiritual brings life (2Cor3:6).  When the carnal literal interpretation is transferred to human women, it doesn’t really make sense, yet people still interpret it literally because they are still in the carnal mind.  For example, there are millions of women in the world who have physically given birth, but are still not on their way to being “saved” by orthodox Christian definition. There are also human women who have taught men countless things and have spoken wisely in “church” and guided men well, yet these scriptures tell us that should not be so. If we read this scripture by the letter, women would actually be treated as having a lower understanding and mental ability [than any man] in the church, and we need to ask if that is truly God’s intention for these scriptures. The literal carnal interpretation needs a second look. Interpreting these scriptures about women such that they are to be applied literally to human women is considered the carnal non-spiritual interpretation. If what 2Corinthians 3:6 says is the truth, there must me a spiritual interpretation. The literal interpretation about human women needs to be understood as milk and the spiritual interpretation found.

Romans 1:20 “For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:”

The invisible things of God are perceived by understanding the things that are made. This means we should look at the things that are clearly seen (physical things) and use them to represent or portray the invisible things of God. Our surroundings and things that are made, including ourselves, our physical clearly visible bodies, should be used to help us understand God and the invisible things of him.  The physical realm and the things we do here are merely examples for us to use to help us understand the spiritual things of God. The literal or carnal story of our lives is an allegory of the invisible things of God as are the scriptures.

1Thessalonians 5:23 “And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

This scripture above helps us to understand that we each have a spirit, soul, and body, and these are three things that make up our being to complete it; which can also be used to understand ourselves.

Hebrews 4:12  “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”  

Hebrews 4 explains a little about the “word of God” which in many instances is compared to or is the scriptures (Bible), and here it also says that we have a soul and a spirit. From the wording of this scripture it is noted that the soul and spirit can be separated, and this sword can divide them; but when they are divided, it is because they are being pierced by the twoedged sword part of the word. The word is twoedged because it is double mouthed or has double meanings. The word “twoedged” is the Greek word distomos which from Strong’s Concordance means  ”having a double mouth as a river”; which means the word has two meanings. One side of the mouth will produce life and the other kills.  When one sees the “word of God” as one sided rather than two, they are not being careful with the twoedged sword because they do not realize it has another sharp side, and it can “kill” our truth if not handled properly (see 2Corinthians 3:6). If one does not handle the “word of God” as a twoedged sword, it can actually “hurt” them.   Once the double mouth of the word is seen and the spiritual meaning is understood beyond the literal carnal meaning, the true thoughts and intents of the heart are seen.  The word of God then has the power to separate the untruthful spirit (carnal mind) from our soul. Once the “spirit” of untruth (carnal mind) is separated from our soul, the soul as able to be joined to the Spirit of truth and love.

If we do have both a soul and spirit, how do they relate to “women being silent in the church” as the discussion topic says? 

Matthew 19:3-12 “The Pharisees also came unto him, tempting him, and saying unto him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife for every cause? And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder. They say unto him, Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement, and to put her away? He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so. And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery. His disciples say unto him, If the case of the man be so with his wife, it is not good to marry. But he said unto them, All men cannot receive this saying, save they to whom it is given. For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother's womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven's sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it.”  (note, also read Mark 10 for a little different explanation)

The Pharisees are mixing spiritual commandments with earthly carnal understanding of the commandments and are trying to use their confused thoughts to trip up Jesus. They know there is power in Jesus’ teachings, but they cannot comprehend them, so they presume there is a contradiction in his teachings. Jesus explains that at the beginning (the beginning of what is not described), God made them male and female as one flesh combined in marriage spiritually. The orthodox or traditional understanding of this saying is that God made humans in two forms, a male form and a female form, two separate persons. But the scripture does not explicitly say this; people just assume it does because the physical human form is typically either a male or female.  However, the scriptures say that we are to be male AND female as one flesh.  Our male and female (internal sides) are to be joined in our flesh, our “one” flesh. The word flesh here literally means the substance of the living body, the physical human body, a creature, specifically not spiritual.  Each individual person (one flesh) has both male and female within and those two sides are joined by God, and man is not supposed to separate them (i.e. put asunder Matthew 19).   Speaking carnally now, men and women human couples may be close intellectually or emotionally, but they are not combined physically to be one person or “one flesh” as this is speaking of. This is clearly speaking of one fleshly person, not one spiritual body. The reason the word flesh (sarx in Greek), is used here is because it specifically is referring to our fleshly human bodies, not some spiritual connotation.

Please note that there are other scripture references that speak of “one body” which are not speaking of one flesh (e.g. 1Cor6, 1Cor12 and others). The word “body” in these scriptures is not speaking of fleshly creatures or individual persons, but means as a group or body of people, and can be thought of as spiritual.

What the Pharisees are mixing up and getting confused in Matthew 19 is two separate happenings that they think are the one in the same; the marriage that a priest performs between two separate human men and human women is an earthly carnal marriage, and they think that this earthly marriage between two people is the same marriage that Moses allowed for a bill of divorce per the law.  And they also think this carnal two person marriage is the same spiritual internal marriage that is spoken of “in the beginning” that man should not put asunder; which God performs within each person and what God joins. If the physical marriage of human men and women is thought to be the same marriage as the one that God joins together in “one flesh”, then there is confusion and contradiction. The marriage that God performs to combine male and female components in one flesh (one person) is not the same marriage that a priest performs between two separate people.

Some people may argue that God can join the human couple in “holy matrimony” because some religions believe that it is God that does the joining and the marriage. Or they believe they are married for eternity because the true God gave the special priest permission to marry the couple and they somehow magically become “one flesh” because it was done with power ordained by God. They may have been joined by a priest or pastor, with God’s permission or in God’s presence, however, this marriage of TWO human people is not the same marriage spoken of in Matthew 19 concerning the joining of the male and female into “one flesh”; which are two components inside ONE person.

Again, to make sure it is clear, no marriage of two separate persons will bring about one person in the flesh. It has never been accomplished. The two persons may be spiritually connected, as many people are, but they are not one flesh, or one person. Some may believe they are one spirit, but that does not make them one flesh, as the scripture so plainly state. A two person marriage is not the same marriage in Matthew 19:6 or in Genesis 2:24.  The human couple, married here on earth in a physical ceremony, do not become one fleshly body, are still two separate creatures, are two separate persons, and are still called a “couple”, which means two, after the ceremony. The joining that God is doing spoken of in Matthew 19:6 is a spiritual invisible happening within one person or one flesh.

The “hardness of your hearts” spoken in Matthew 19:8 is the Greek word sklerokardia which according to Strong’s Concordance means destitute of spiritual perception.  Because the people see with an earthly mindset, the “Law” [which can also be understood BOTH carnally and spiritually (remember that twoedged sword)] allows for divorce; whether this divorce is a spiritual divorce to separate our soul from an untruthful or unfaithful spirit or a carnal divorce of two earthly married people, depending on how you are interpreting it, the conclusion is the same. The marriage understood by those with a hard heart (destitute of spiritual perception) as spoken of those in Matthew 19:8 is not the same spiritually understood marriage God performs within one flesh.  Because the marriage understood by those destitute of spiritual perception is the earthly carnal one between two separate people.

However, those destitute of spiritual perception do not understand the spiritual bill of divorcement because they do not understand their soul is spoken for and therefore want to continue marrying their other five husbands (carnal five senses), see John 4:15-19 below.

John 4:15-19 “Jesus saith unto her, Go, call thy husband, and come hither. The woman answered and said, I have no husband. Jesus said unto her, Thou hast well said, I have no husband: For thou hast had five husbands; and he whom thou now hast is not thy husband: in that saidst thou truly. The woman saith unto him, Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet.”

In John 4 the five husbands represent our carnal five senses who are not our true spiritual husband (Christ within). For more insight on this see post on June 28, 2014, “Who Are We Married To?”

Matthew 19:11-12 also talks about those people who cannot marry and cannot “receive” this saying about marriage. This can be interpreted to mean that this is a difficult message to understand and not all people will be able understand it. Jesus is using an analogy to compare those that do not marry in the flesh with those that cannot grasp the concept of a spiritual marriage within a person.

Matthew 22:29-32 “Jesus answered and said unto them, Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God. For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven. But as touching the resurrection of the dead, have ye not read that which was spoken unto you by God, saying, I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.”

The spiritual meaning of “the resurrection” is discussed in the May 24, 2015 post.   However, Matthew 22:32 implies that “the resurrection" is not about something that happens after physical death because it says “God is not a God of the dead, but of the living”.  So the Sadducees, who do not understand the true meaning of the resurrection, are mixing their understanding of carnal earthly marriage with the internal spiritual resurrection. And Jesus answers that during the spiritual resurrection (the rising or awakening of Christ within) they are no longer getting married spiritually (i.e. to their five senses which represent the spirit of the carnal mind) and are therefore messengers for God (angels). He doesn’t directly answer their question. Spiritually speaking and spiritually interpreted it does not make sense to mix earthly carnal marriage with the spiritual resurrection; one happens physically or carnally and one is spiritual.   The resurrection brings spiritual knowledge and one no longer has a need to marry their other five husbands (i.e. five senses, tree of knowledge, carnal mind, etc...) However, regardless of the spiritual meaning of “the resurrection” or the meaning of spiritual marriage in one flesh, they have little to do directly with the earthly carnal marriage between two people. 

There is another marriage that is spoken of many times throughout the scriptures. The coming of the Kingdom of Heaven is compared to a marriage. The resurrection happens before the coming of the Kingdom of Heaven or Kingdom of God (see 1Corinthians 15:23). The preparation for this marriage (i.e. the coming of Christ) happens after the resurrection, speaking spiritually of course and all within a person.  See post on September 20, 2014 for more information on this sequence.

Matthew 25:1-10 “Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom….While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept….And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him….And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut.”

Luke 5:34-35 “And he said unto them, Can ye make the children of the bridechamber fast, while the bridegroom is with them? But the days will come, when the bridegroom shall be taken away from them, and then shall they fast in those days.

The coming of the kingdom of heaven or the coming of Christ is compared to and described as a marriage with Christ, where we are the bride and Christ is the bridegroom. The Song of Solomon is an allegory of the love story between the bride and the bridegroom (the Church and Christ).

Now we will go back to the idea that we have a body, soul, and spirit.  The literal words used in the Bible discuss these three things (body, soul, spirit) that we have. The male and female sides are both joined in “one flesh”, and we can compare this idea with the fact that we also have a soul and spirit both in one body (one flesh). Remember, from discussion above about Hebrews 4, that our soul and spirit can be separated from each other.   If the soul and spirit can be separated in one body, and the male and female can be joined in one body, the conclusion is that the male and female spoken of in Matthew 19, the same male and female joined from the beginning, represent our spirit and soul respectively. The male side represents the spirit which also comes from the male image of God and the male image Christ, both spirits. The soul then represents the female side.

When we are physically born here on earth, at first all we know is our earthly surrounding and what our fives senses come to teach us. Matthew 19 says “….shall a man leave father and mother...”. The word for “man” here in Mathew 19:5 is the Greek word anthropos which means “human being, whether male or female, generically to include all human individuals”, not just a male person. This is very significant for us to see and understand. This word “man” here should be read as the general word for man, as in mankind, not a human male.   It would read “…shall a human being leave father and mother cleave unto its wife and they twain shall be one flesh”. “So we humans, all of us men and women, are supposed to “leave” [as in to forsake and leave behind] our “father and mother” [which represents the originator and things that create our carnal mind, our earthly mind (i.e our five senses)] and be married spiritually to our wife (soul).  The female represents our soul to be joined together or married in spirit to the human being (human “spirit” being) which leaves behind the originator (father and mother) of the carnal mind.  

1 Corinthians 12:27 “Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.”

Here is says we ARE the body of Christ. 

Colossians 1:18 “And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.” Colossians 1:24 “Who now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body's sake, which is the church:”

Here it says that the body IS the church.  And it also says that Christ is the HEAD of the church.

Ephesians 5:23-25 “For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing. Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;”

Here is says that the husband controls the wife, just like Christ controls his church. It also implies that the church is the bride of Christ.

2Corinthians 11:1-3 “Would to God ye could bear with me a little in my folly: and indeed bear with me. For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ. But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.”

In 2Corinthians 11 is says we are espoused to one husband (Christ), however our mind is strayed way to receive another spirit (another husband) that is not Christ, “another Jesus”. It gives the example of how our mind is compared to Eve, and our mind (Eve, the woman) is deceived away from our true husband (Christ) to receive another Jesus. Our mind is compared to Eve, our female side.

Therefore:

  1. person = body of Christ (each one a member) (1 Cor 12:27)
  2. body of Christ = the church (Col 1)
  3. person = the church
  4. Christ controls his church just like the husband controls the wife
  5. Head of church = Christ
  6. Head of wife = husband
  7. Husband = Christ (2 Cor 11:2)

Colossian 1:27 “To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:”

And from Colossian 1:27 we remember that Christ is also within each person.  Therefore the bride of Christ and Christ are both one person (i.e. within one physical person).

Ephesians 5:30-32 “For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.”

Ephesians 5 says that the joining of the two in one flesh is a GREAT MYSTERY. It says here that this IS the  mystery; the joining of the soul and the spirit, the church and Christ in one flesh because we are members of his body and are his flesh.  Ephesians is very clear about Christ and the Church being joined in ONE FLESH, one person. 

With these concepts in mind let’s look at the scriptures quoted at the beginning of this document concerning women keeping silent in the “Church” and being in obedience to the husband.

1Corinthians 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.”

This scripture now makes perfect sense when looking at it spiritually.  In the Church (your body), your woman needs to keep silent; where the Church is the body of Christ, and the woman is within each person or within each body of Christ.  And when our woman is deceived by those preaching another Jesus [as “Eve” was deceived by another spirit, the spirit of the serpent] she needs to keep silent in the body of Christ (the Church) and be obedient to Christ. She needs to ask her husband (Christ) for help. Again this speaking about all humans beings, not just human women.

1Timothy 2:11-15 “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. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.”

1Timothy 2:11-14 Says that the woman (Eve) was deceived but Adam was not deceived.  For this reason she should learn in silence, and should not teach or usurp authority over the man. It says that the reason for this is that the woman (Eve) was deceived.  Eve represents the female side of each human, and Adam represents Christ our true husband. It says that the woman or soul was deceived. The woman, when listening to her carnal husbands (five senses) rather than her spiritual Christ or true husband is deceived.  When the soul is “married” to the spirit of Christ, it will follow God’s law and do as the spiritual law says and be in subjection [to Christ]. Silence and subjections represents a quiet mind open to what Christ is telling us rather than what the carnal mind is saying.  It also says that the woman is saved in childbearing. Now that we see that the woman or Eve represents our soul (i.e. deceived soul) we can understand how we are saved in childbearing, which means to give birth and form Christ within, where the mind of Christ does the saving (see 2Corinthians 2). 

Philippians 4:2-3 “I beseech Euodias, and beseech Syntyche, that they be of the same mind in the Lord. And I intreat thee also, true yokefellow, help those women which laboured with me in the gospel, with Clement also, and with other my fellowlabourers, whose names are in the book of life.”

In Philippians, Paul is talking about other “women” who have laboured with him in the gospel. If human women are to be silent and only be taught by the human man (again the literal interpretation), why would these women be laboring with Paul to understand the truth? It is because these women are “fellowlabourers” in the gospel with Paul who also have a soul (the woman) who is laboring to form Christ her true husband. 

1Peter 3:1-7 “Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear. Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel;  But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price. For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands: Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement. Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.”

1 Peter 3:1 talks about how the wife is to be in subjection (to be under the control of) the husband. If we are under the control of Christ (our true husband), even if we do not obey the word (literal read laws in the scriptures), we will still “be won” (have Christ’s favor) by our conversation (behavior). In other words, when we are controlled by the Spirit of Christ, the truth is in our heart, even if we don’t follow the law of the word, and live by supposed rules and regulations. God wants us to live by his guidance rather than by the guidance of literally perceived laws.  See also 2 Corinthians 3:6 “Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.”.

If we read 1Peter 3 literally and apply it to human couples it doesn’t hold true, because human husbands are not “saved” by the actions of their human wives under orthodox teachings of what it means to be saved.  The literal interpretation and application to carnal human couples does not make sense and will not hold true to real world examples. For example, 1 Peter 3 instructs the husband to dwell with the wives according to the wife's "knowledge" and this gives the wife honor. And then heirs together they find grace. When taken literally it brings questions such as “what if a man has a wife who isn't very knowledgeable?” This would give the husband reason not "dwell" with the wife according to God's instruction. The word dwell here can mean a variety of things, one being intercourse.  When interpreted allegorically or spiritually, we understand that Christ (the internal husband) will dwell with us according to our knowledge and our understanding. If we are earthly minded, we are not very knowledgeable with the spiritual things of God, and therefore Christ will be less likely to dwell with us. Also, Galatians 4:24 states that the story of Abraham [and Sarah] is an allegory anyway.

1Peter 3 also implies that the “woman” needs to have a meek and quiet spirit.  But again this is talking about the internal woman (soul), and this interpretation would also hold true to other scriptures which direct all humans to be meek. The soul (woman) is married to a quiet meek spirit (Christ). Christ is our meek spirit.  Matt 11:24 “Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.” Christ is also the hidden man of the heart, see 1Peter 3:4.

When marriage is spoken of throughout the scriptures, it is our soul’s (i.e. woman) marriage to Christ.  This is the most important marriage.  This is the marriage that matters most to the spiritual God.

The soul, by means of Strong’s Concordance, is the seat of the feelings, desires, affections, aversions, our heart. Our soul really doesn’t reason or think. Our conscious mind does the thinking, and that mind can be disillusioned by our carnal mind, which in turn deceives our soul.  We should be in constant check of our soul (feelings, desires, aversions, etc.) to determine if it is in line with Christ. Our spirit, my means of Strong’s Concordance, is a simple essence, devoid of all or at least all grosser matter, and possessed of the power of knowing, desiring, deciding, and acting.  The spirit we have contains more of our knowing and reasoning power, where our soul is more of our heart and affections.  These can also be compared with the two sides or our mind, or even the “yin and yang” of each person for sake of real world examples. One side is more analytic thought, reason, logic, math, facts (spirit), where the other side is more intuitive, imaginative, feeling, creative, passion, desires (soul). There is time when we need to set our feelings aside and use logic, reason, and facts to come to know truth.  Once this truth is known it can then guide our soul (feelings and imagination) to truth as well.

1Corinthians 15:45 “And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit.Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual.”

Our first person (the first Adam) is functioning out of our soul (feelings, desires, appetites), the natural man, but once we have our spirit of truth to guide us (last Adam or Christ) we have the reason and judgement of God and we live by that truth.

Galatians 4:19,221-24, 27-30 “My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you…Tell me, ye that desire to be under the law, do ye not hear the law? For it is written, that Abraham had two sons, the one by a bondmaid, the other by a freewoman. But he who was of the bondwoman was born after the flesh; but he of the freewoman was by promise… Which things are an allegory: for these are the two covenants; the one from the mount Sinai, which gendereth to bondage, which is Agar… For it is written, Rejoice, thou barren that bearest not; break forth and cry, thou that travailest not: for the desolate hath many more children than she which hath an husband. But as then he that was born after the flesh persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, even so it is now. Nevertheless what saith the scripture? Cast out the bondwoman and her son: for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir with the son of the freewoman.”

Galatians 4 above says that we need to hear what the law says and it is an allegory; an allegory of what happens within us.  We humans, both male and female, travail in BIRTH like a woman does, until Christ is formed in us.  We form Christ when our woman gives birth to our second born. Our first born son who is born after the flesh is our carnal mind.  Our second born son, Christ, is born after the Spirit, which represents leaving of the carnal mind and on to more allegorical interpretations. In Galatians 4, Paul says he travails in birth until Christ (child) is formed. Paul is referring to himself as a woman. Women give birth not men. He is supposedly male yet he, a male human, is travailing in birth to form Christ. This is meant to be taken spiritually not literally, like the allegory of Abraham. When we are “born again”, Christ our second born, the child of promise (Isaac or second born) is formed or born in us by the laboring efforts of our woman or soul (see Philippians 4:3 again). We then cast out our carnal mind (first born son), and leave behind the parent that formed it (see Matt 19:5).

1Corinthians 2:14-16 “But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man. For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.”

Isaiah 26:8-9 “Yea, in the way of thy judgments, O LORD, have we waited for thee; the desire of our soul is to thy name, and to the remembrance of thee. With my soul have I desired thee in the night; yea, with my spirit within me will I seek thee early: for when thy judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.”

References:

 

King James Version Bible
Strong’s Concordance
 
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