1 & 2 Timothy and Titus: Day 3

Instructions on Prayer

by

Today's Text: 1 Timothy 2:1-15, Deuteronomy 6:4, John 10:14-18, 2 Peter 3:14-16

Scripture Reading: 1 Timothy 2:1-15, Deuteronomy 6:4, John 10:14-18, 2 Peter 3:14-16

Just as we’ve all been doing for the past few millennia, I skipped ahead this morning. I glanced at 1 Timothy 2 and read the last few verses and my stomach sunk. This chapter has been hotly debated by theologians far more versed than I in the original languages, in historical context, and in all kinds of study. How can I possibly add to the conversation?

To write about 1 Timothy 2 for a community of women who will all have some sort of pain or story or lens through which they read this chapter feels too daunting for me. But then my eyes catch the last words of it: “continue in faith, love, and holiness, with good sense” (v. 15). What does it mean, first, for me to honor and obey these words before I think of communicating them to others? Chiefly it means to exercise self-control and read from the beginning. My eyes moved back up the page to these words:

“First of all, then, I urge that petitions, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for everyone, for kings and all those who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity. This is good, and it pleases God our Savior, who wants everyone to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (vv. 1-4).

“First of all, then… ”

There is an order to these words. Paul wants to communicate something to Timothy: that all people in all places need “petitions, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings” made on their behalf, and in doing so it leads to a “tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity” (v. 1). It gives dignity to all people everywhere when we pray for them, thank God for them, and intercede on their behalf.

It seems to me the enemy’s best ploy is to steal our dignity, our quietness, and our peace by disordering our reading. Enticing us to lack self-control and skip passages, cherry-picking the most difficult or most beautiful to meet whatever need we have in ourselves or see in culture. But to live quietly, peacefully, and with dignity, we must read in order and, in some ways, do in order.

Before we argue about hotly debated subjects, do we first dignify one another by praying, interceding, and giving thanks for each other? Are we first people of peace by offering supplication (the action of asking or begging for something earnestly or humbly) on behalf of their personhood, character, story, theology, and personality? Are we primarily people of quietness, trusting that it is God who changes hearts and minds and stories—not us?

There is so much division in our world today. One needs only a cursory glance at the news to know brokenness abounds. But it’s not just in culture; it’s in the Church, too—this passage is a prime example of passages that divide instead of unite. How, then, can we be people who first pray before debate, who first intercede before we interject, and who first give thanks before we theologize?

This morning, as I write, I want to stay in the first few verses of 1 Timothy chapter 2 before I move further down in the passage. I want to learn to pray with this kind of open-handedness to the God of the universe on behalf of all people everywhere.

SRT-TimothyTitus-Shareimage-Day3

Lore Ferguson Wilbert is a writer, thinker, and learner. She blogs at Sayable, and tweets and instagrams at @lorewilbert. She has a husband named Nate, a puppy named Harper Nelle, and too many books to read in one lifetime.

  • Adrianne Pepitone

    What I gathered from the controversial passage is it says “I do not allow..”, it does not say God does not allow. It appears to me more of a personal policy that Paul is stating, most likely brought on my events happening in the church at that time.

  • Ana Petric

    I think Paul wants to emphasize that who we are on the inside is more important than how we look on the outside. And he reminds us that, because we as women tend to spend alot of time trying to look good and forget what God really wants from us, to love and serve with a kind heart. In 1 Peter 1.2 we find this: Wives, in the same way submit yourselves to your own husbands so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives, 2 when they see the purity and reverence of your lives.

    13 For Adam was formed first, then Eve. 14 And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner. 15 But she will be saved through childbearing—if they continue in faith, love and holiness with propriety.
    When Paul says that the women was decieved he is talking about Eve, and she will be saved through childbearig because she is the mother of all, including Jesus. Jesus was born from a woman, not a man. God gave the women the privilege and honor to be the one that brings His Son into this world. And if you pay attention to the last verse you see that Paul is saying “she will be saved” refering to Eve, and then he changes to “if they continue in..” talking about all the women. There is only one way man and woman are saved and that is believing in Jesus Christ.

  • Kennisha Griffin

    Awesome message! It really is so easy to start off with “First of all, then… blah blah blah blah…” on to the third paragraph lol. #guilty. Grateful for this encouragement to SLOW DOWN and really take in each word the Spirit of the Lord is saying! Thanks for this!!!

  • Jen Nohrenberg

    Man, this is good. Thank you Lore. Before we do all things, like even question the end of this passage or raise our fists – we should be doing just as you (and Paul) mention. As a former hot head protestor of a lot of things – God is totally softening my heart for the predator as much as the prey. For the things I don’t understand as much as the things I understand. Idk if that all makes sense with this but in my head it does lol. Thanks for this.

  • Joely Walters

    Hey, sisters! I returned to this passage because I have been struggling with it for a few days, now. I am 20 years old and while my age instantly makes me young and naïve, I know who I am in God. I know where I stand with Him. I know His love knows no bounds and will relentlessly pursue me until my final breath. I feel so burdened to sit here and read these words because they make me feel small. They make me feel insignificant. I can’t even begin to explain the war inside my head on the woman God intends me to be. It’s hard for me to believe the Father who created and desires me, could want me to feel this way. I know that I am stubborn and constantly seeking control, so in this way, I must submit myself. But where is the line? I am wrestling with the thought that the God I love, the God I share with others, the God I pursue does not sound like this. Where am I wrong? What don’t I understand? I need your wisdom, please.

    • Jen Nohrenberg

      Hey lady! A 24 year old fresh college graduate here haha I totally understand. I left a comment under Grace and Stephanies post – I hope it helps! God is the ultimate authority on scripture and He sent His spirit as an advocate. Just continue to reach out to Him and what you seek earnestly, you will find. I’m not going to tell you it will all come at once or in 3 days or 24 hours (tho it might) but Im praying with you that He will put the right people in your path to help you in this journey. He promises in His word that He doesn’t leave us as orphans. Tht He comes to us. So don’t be afraid to ask. He’s always ready for a date night with His children.

    • Giulliana Tessarin

      Hey… I hope you are feeling better. The fact that you are young does not disqualify (1 Tm 4.12). I understand your struggle and for a lot of years I had the same doubts. I was reading this passage again today and my Bible (NIV Study Bible has a really nice note for 1 Tm 2.13-14:

      “Paul based the restrictions on Ge 2–3. Some argue that “for” does not express the reason for woman’s silence and submission but is used only as a connective word, as in v. 5. The meaning, then, would be that Adam’s priority in creation illustrates the present situation of male priority in teaching at Ephesus, and Eve’s deception illustrates the deception of the untrained and aggressive Ephesian women involved in false teaching. Thus the prohibition is not universal and permanent but restricted to this church’s situation “. Under different circumstances the restrictions would not apply (e.g., 1Co 11:1–5). Others believe that the appeal to the creation account makes the restrictions universal and permanent: (1) Adam was formed first. Paul appeals to the priority of Adam in creation, which predates the fall. Thus he views the man-woman relationship set forth in this passage as grounded in creation. (2) the woman … was deceived. Paul appears to argue that since the woman was deceived (and then led Adam astray), she is not to be entrusted with the teaching function of an overseer (or elder) in the public worship services of the assembled church.”

      I hope this can help you a little bit… feel free to write your doubts.

    • Katherine Hanes

      Hey girly! I understand where you are coming from. Sometimes, when we rely on our limited human minds to make meaning out of complicated scripture, we end up finding ourselves in a hard place. This is my personal theology, but I believe that primarily, Paul is telling women to be known for your heart, and not outward appearances. “Outward appearances” does not necessarily means clothing and accessories; rather, it may mean our actions. The mouth speakers from the overflow of the heart…

    • Phoebe Khaliqi

      Hey Joely, I am 20 also and can totally understand where you are coming from and what you are feeling! Biblical femininity from a slightly feminist lens is something I have been looking into a lot lately because the bible is often used as an example of how Christianity is demeaning to women, and I think the exact opposite is true! So hopefully this helps! :)
      V. 8-10: We all know the one-uping competitiveness that a group of men can often fall into. Verse 8 calls men to pray and worship without an agenda to proving their masculinity. Similarly, verses 9-10 call women to pray and worship without proving our femininity. As Christian women our goal is not outward appearance, as many other women establish their identity in, but the spread of the gospel and the glory of God. Similar to what other posts say, its not what is on the outside that matters, but or main goal is prayer and the advancement of the gospel.
      V. 11-12: This is a hard one. First of all, this part calls women to learn! And what is the purpose of learning if not to share that knowledge, and act within it? So we know that we do have a role in the church! “Quietly and with all submissiveness” makes us as women feel lesser than and devalued, but I don’t think thats what Paul wanted us to feel, so where is the disconnect? There are so many different kinds of leadership within the church, and not all are called to the obvious kinds. There is a beauty to the supporting role that women can play in the church because it is so so so necessary! If everybody in the church was trying to gain some outright leadership role (such as a pastor), arguing about how the church should run, the church would be split, and could not operate for the kingdom. Along with that, a good leader can only operate as such with support. I think the combination of those two things establishes the role of women in serving ALONGSIDE men in the church, but not trying to control their leadership positions, is a very strong and incredibly needed role in the leadership of the church. Support sometimes makes us think that our role is lesser than, but in Genesis we see that both men and women are created in the image of God and THAT is where our value comes from! Even though it sounds like Paul is being demeaning to women is this passage, his words are inspired by God, and we know where God stands on the issue based on Genesis, so from that we can see a little bit more accurately what Paul is trying to say.
      V. 13 Even though Adam was created first, that does not immediately imply that Adam was created better than. In fact, woman was created uniquely, for the exact purpose she would serve in the kingdom! 1. she was created from Adam’s rib. Not his head to be above, and not his foot to be below man, but a rib from his side, to serve alongside. A rib is also a vital supporter and protector of the body. Without the ribs our organs would be unprotected and our body would be unsupported. I think women in the church serve a similar purpose of vital protection and support. 2. Woman was also the only creature created from something other than dust (Which I think is REALLY cool) and how we were created illustrates the unique role that we have been given. We as women are so so needed!
      V. 14, Ana Petric’s comment above clarified this one really really well!
      I hope maybe this helped a little bit! Love you sister, and I’m praying for you!

  • Grace Woods

    I feel that this passage lacks ethos because it’s written by a man and harshly critiques women. (Is it outdated? Or is it just because sexism has existed and will continue to exist till the end of time) It also implies that a woman’s sole purpose is to reproduce which almost demeans them to animals (ie husband) I feel that marriage should be a partnership and the woman SHOULD support the man in everything he does, but out of love and not because she is too unwise to do any different. I find it hard to believe that God would make me an intelligent woman with a strong personality and not expect me to make any impact outside of the household. I feel like husbands can learn things from their wives without being problematic or damning all of humanity (eve). My final question is: Is this piece one that should be looked at as a guide for women today or is it purely situational and really applies to Paul and Timothy’s specific situation?

    • Stephanie

      I have so many thoughts about the passage in question and I feel my own thoughts to be at odds with what the text seems to be saying. I agree with so much of what you’ve said here. As a single woman of 32, I find the words “she will be saved through childbearing” extremely painful, as it seems less and less likely that I will have children. The whole passage from v11-15 make me feel small and belittled, and like I don’t have much value. I can’t imagine that my Father in heaven wants me to feel like that. So there’s clearly something at odds here…I just don’t know what it is! Is it my own feelings? Or is it that the real message of this passage has been taken to mean something it doesn’t? I just don’t know. I know I have a real problem with the sole blame of the Fall being put on Eve in this passage. Yes, she was the one who let herself be tricked by the cunning of the serpent, took the fruit and ate it, and then gave it to Adam. But we need to also remember that Adam was also commanded by God not to eat the fruit. He stood idly by in an attitude of apathy and non-assertiveness as he watched Eve be talked round by the serpent to receive and eat the fruit. He then was happy to take the fruit for himself when offered it by Eve. He also sinned against God, which I view as completely separate from Eve. He had two opportunities to resist sin: 1) to try stop Eve from going against God’s command and 2) to refuse the fruit when offered by Eve. But he didn’t do either. He just went along with it.

      • Jessica

        Maybe this can be a help to some for vs. 15.
        https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=1Un1t13CVj0

      • Hannah O.

        I struggle with this passage as well. I tend to land closely to some of what Stephanie said.

        I appreciate that SRT steers away from taking positions on questions like those brought up by this passage and instead points to bigger picture things. It means I’m still here using their studies.

      • Jessica

        I am also 32 and without children. This is a difficult piece of scripture. I especially struggled with verse 15. I read David Guzik’s commentary (linked below) and saw some wonderful insight there on the meaning for all of this. I highly suggest reading it as I have a deeper and less troubled view after doing so.
        From his commentary and back to verse 15 “she will be saved in childbearing” also according to Greek grammar “in the childbirth” – saved by the Messiah whom was brought into this world, birthed of a woman. What a beautiful reminder that although Eve was deceived, G-d used Mary to bring us the Messiah.
        https://www.blueletterbible.org/Comm/guzik_david/StudyGuide2017-1Ti/1Ti-2.cfm

      • Nia

        just remember that anything of confusion is not from God. So if you’re struggling to find deeper meaning in these verses then just ask the Holy Spirit to help you understand! He is our helper and guide to direct us to the truth.

    • Amber Underwood

      Two of you ladies brought up very valid and good points. I completely agree with you both. I feel belittled in those passages as mentioned by Stephanie. Can anyone give more insight on this? We should be praying upon this because i know God never wants us to feel this way.

      • Hannah O.

        Books that have helped me: A Year of Biblical Womanhood by Rachel Held Evans, and Jesus Feminist by Sarah Bessey. Also Out of Sorts by Sarah Bessey.

      • Jen Nohrenberg

        I just replied and idk if it helps but just in case it does! Love you beautiful ladies and praying that God brings some insight!

      • Jessica

        Check out the commentary I mentioned above. Someone linked that site in the comments when I did the Lent Isaiah study and I always use it for more difficult pieces of scripture :)

    • Jen Nohrenberg

      I completely understand. For a really long time, I researched and prayed and asked a lot of questions on verses like this. One thing I know to be true – when we seek the answers earnestly, He provides them. The women during that time were not provided with educational opportunities. They were trying to preach to churches and usurp leadership without really having education on the things they were speaking about. I think in that regard, it is situational. However, I do know some believe Paul is speaking about women for all time in regards to leadership which I also see but some women feel differently about that. I think if you truly seek God on it, He’ll give you the understanding you seek. He also mentioned being quiet – but this is more an imperative learning that he is talking about based on the Greek words used. He wants women learning in the church and not excluded (which was also something that was happening). As for child bearing, I think this is in regards to him mentioning Eve being deceived over Adam in the previous verse. I think he’s balancing what he said previously. I don’t believe he’s saying this is a necessary thing for all women. Because Paul is also the one who swings in to mention being single forever is far from a bad thing. Idk if this helps but just thought I’d offer it! Praying God speaks to you today and everyday.

  • Monica Davis

    Love how peter supported Paul. The Bible verifies itself

  • Katie Jackson

    This was one of the most convicting and thought provoking devotions that I have read in years. I have gone back and re-read it now several times. thank you so much for writing this!

  • Abigail Floyd

    I am humbled by God in reading this scripture reminding me that as a wife I should pray earnestly for my husband and love him. Submission is not a sign of weakness as so many believe, it’s honoring God by allowing my husband to lead me and my family and be the man of God he has been called to be. I whole heartily love being his wife and feel challenged to intercede on his behalf as I pray diligently for him everyday. Thank you God for choosing me to be a wife! Thank you God for choosing me to serve him!

  • Chloe Harrison

    This is such a great reminder to start at the beginning and do things with love first before jumping the gun. This passage always gets my back up so I was a little apprehensive to what would have been brought by SRT but I think this has been approached respectfully of everyone’s stance and with fresh eyes! I always jump to the part that I feel I can argue with and miss that “first of all”.

  • Rebecca Leek

    i don’t think we should expect SRT to take full responsibility to guide us through understanding each and every nuance of scripture. I am encouraged to do my own study on this controversial passage. It was just discovered in Jerusalem a catacomb that had paintings on it, from around the 5th century, one of which is a woman who was clearly a bishop. A bishop! It was around this time that Constantinople banned all women from holy positions and taking part in ceremonies from positions of holy authority, and that has remained in some sects of the Christianity to this day. The female disciples of Jesus have been largely ignored. It has been theorised that there were actually 12 female disciples of Jesus, all of whom, with varying abilities, provided for Jesus and the male diaciples from their resources. Joanna was the wife of a chief advisor to King Harod. She was a wealthy woman, and left the court to follow Jesus. It would have been more in the spirit of this community to discuss why this controversial passage is written here, what it means, what the context is, rather than demonstrating what it says a woman should do, that is, being quiet on the topic.

    • Mariana Guadalupe

      great to read all that information! i think something to understand too is that the bible cannot be controversial because that would mean God is wrong and that’s just impossible. it’s His word so in order for us to understand better as SRT says, read from top to bottom. use the bible as your guide to help you understand text. use scripture to support scripture so you can better understand. another great source is gotquestions.org. we aren’t told we cannot share the gospel or have our own bible studies and to teach one another, but when it comes to the church it is a mans responsibility and that was appointed by God himself. hopefully that help :)

  • ⚠ we are told here to pray for everyone. Not who we choose or who we prefer to pray for. We can’t pick through people deciding who needs God the most. As we slow down time through prayers, intercession, and Thanksgiving we can acknowledge that those around us need this from us more and more.

    In addition, this passage describes a humble women, to me. First dress respectful with right thinking. Second, do good deeds to display beauty. Third, learn by listening. Fourth, I need faith, love, holiness and self-control.

  • Faith Morrison

    I am disappointed in She Reads Truth for this devotional. It is unkind to unleash a passage upon your community that can cause so much pain and not even attempt to help them understand. It is irresponsible. Choosing to avoid “controversy” over providing Biblical guidance of a difficult passage is damaging. So many women probably read this and left completely disheartened and feeling unloved by God, simply because She Reads Truth didn’t want to deal with difficult scripture. Next time you have a difficult passage in your study, please at least make an attempt to walk your community through it instead of leaving them stranded.

    • She Reads Truth

      Hi Faith, thanks for being willing to share your thoughts on this. We’re thankful that you are reading with us, and thankful for your concern for the other women who are reading with us, too.

      Our primary mission at She Reads Truth is “women in the Word of God every day.” We exist to invite women to read and engage with Scripture daily, and we provide reading plans with supplemental passages to encourage an understanding of the Bible as one complete work (so that “Scripture can interpret Scripture,” as we often say). We recognize this is a different model than most, but that difference is intentional. There are many places on the internet that offer their interpretation of specific Bible passages; we, by contrast, want to invite women to read God’s Word for themselves, believing that it is living and active, and that difficult or nuanced passages are always best discussed in the context of real-life Christian community.
      Thank you again for reading and engaging. We’re glad you’re here. – the SRT team

  • Julianne Lambert

    I struggle greatly with this passage, and reading many of these comments, the suggestion is to read “in context” to find peace with Paul’s words.Reading in context of his letter, though, all I can see is chapter 1 Paul talking about being used to teach widely IN SPITE of being “the worst” sinner and then chapter 2 Paul dismissing the ability of all women to teach due to the original sin of Eve. This causes me to question the rest of Paul’s teaching. What do his words about “new creation” selves mean in the context of these words here? Or his teachings on resisting the teaching of others that would seek to bind us by the law in the context of his words in verse 15 – that we should be saved through childbearing?

  • Christian

    I’m once again finding myself convicted. I need to be lead first to pray and seek Him before I engage in conversations about whatever topic. Pray first…discuss later.

  • Good word. After we all get quiet and put our fists down, here’s an article on the context of those dicey woman passages that I found super helpful: http://www.reenactingtheway.com/blog/women-should-not-teach-men-what-1-timothy-2-in-context

  • Kimberly Hartzler

    Yes, I think we need to understand the context to which Paul was writing. Women were abusing authority- “authentein” was translated incorrectly as authority whereas it actually means “usurp authority”. This is the only occurrence of the word in the Bible meaning Timothy must have been dealing with something unusual. Also this was a personal letter from Paul to Timothy not a command from God. It centered around the false teachings as mentioned in chapter 1.

    I think we continue to live quiet humble lives of grace and love and God will work it out as we walk in grace and righteousness he offers us.

  • As someone who is fairly new to christianity this has to be the most difficult section to read, maybe someone can shed light for me: in 1 Timothy 2:11-15 it says women are to learn quietly.. etc why is this so? Does this not clash with other parts of the bible where everyone is to spread the word and bring others to light?

  • Jamie Campbell

    Mary Evelyne, what a beautiful reminder, that helped me a lot. God is good all the time. Thanks!

  • I always found it interesting that Paul starts it out with “I DESIRE.” It sounds like his personal preferences shining through in this chapter. He also said “I DO NOT PERMIT”. These things are coming from him, personally, it sounds like to me, rather than the Creator or the Lord. This is in such contrast to Jesus, who saw women as equals and allowed Mary Magdalene into his inner circle and used women as equally as men. You just gotta chuckle at Paul I think, as some of the things he writes are a little….hmm…of his own thoughts rather than the Creator I think.

    • Kelsey

      Remember that the scripture also says that every word in the Bible is “breathed out by God” and profitable for teaching.

  • Erin Mitchell

    I struggle with 1 Timothy 2 all the time. Reading it and reading trying to see another side other than my own. This post was beautifully written. Putting prayer first. How easy it is to sometimes forget to do.

  • Samantha Jenkins

    Hey, I’m a kind of a new believer and I’m still trying to figure everything out and this makes me feel very conflicted about this passage. I don’t really know what to say but I was wondering if someone could help me understand. It honestly kind of makes me question a lot of things.

    • Lindsay Wineinger

      Others…please interject & correct what I’m saying… *I’m only 1 voice…*
      We are ALL called to live quiet (not in sound, but in drama) lives… notice he said this also of those in authority. Also note in the beginning of verse 12, he says “I,” not God. This could mean that Paul does not permit women to be leaders in the church. (This is an opinion) More importantly, God did create each of us with specific roles. And one does not function to God’s full potential without the others. To clarify, I am not saying you can’t please God only if you’re married, but I do believe you need men AND women with MULTIPLE spiritual gifts in fellowship together to THRIVE as a body of believers…To love God and learn/understand his multiple attributes, to love others as God commanded (got to learn to love those hard-to-love people *wink*), and to live on the mission of telling others about Jesus and decipling them to do those same 3 things.

      As a new believer, I pray you do not find this as a daunting task, but as a fulfilling redeeming love that God has for you. Ask thousands of questions! God is DESPERATE for you to know Him. He can handle your doubts…by golly he conquered the world. *Praying for you Samantha. God’s working…Satan thrives on us to give in to misinterpretations & “cherry picking” scripture.

    • Mary Evelyne W

      Hey Samantha!! I honestly struggle with this passage a lot, but as I was thinking about it today, I remembered a very powerful truth that I often forget. God is a very mysterious guy, but whenever he says something, it is always good. Even if we don’t know what it means or we’re confused, we just have to trust him and focus on the parts that we do understand. They can help us interpret the rest. This can actually apply to so many things in life, whether it be school, work, or something at home or church. I hope this helped!❤️❤️

      • Samantha Jenkins

        Thank you so much! This actually made me feel a lot better. I think I was thinking about it too hard lol.

    • Eva Holsinger

      Hi! First of all, I want to encourage you to read through the whole Bible. Then when you’re done, do it again and again. Each time through new things make sense based on what you read and stuck out to you. So I encourage you to study Gods word first and the hard passages will make more sense in context. There is also a book I read recently which gave an excellent overview and “radical” things for christian women to think about. Women at the Crossroads by Kari Malcolm Torjesen. It was published in the 1980s but it doesn’t matter—the biblical historical and applications are still just as relevant and I finished it feeling incredibly validated as a woman who is also a wife, mother, and work outside the home.

    • Stacey Harper

      Samantha,
      I have been a believer for well over half of my life and this passage gives me pause. I don’t know exactly why these passages are worded this way, but I know there is a reason. There are many things that we know about Christ and His Kingdom because of scripture, but there is also a lot we don’t know and we never will this side of heaven. Just like Mary Evelyne said, He is pretty mysterious guy. :)

    • Shelley

      Hi Samantha. I’m not a Biblical scholar by any means, but I do think the commentary in my Bible (Life Application Bible – NIV – published by Zondervan) does help provide some perspective. The commentary indicates that Paul was writing to Timothy at a time when Jewish women had not historically been permitted to study. So when Paul instructs the Ephesian women not to teach, he’s doing so in the context of the Ephesian women not yet being mature Christians and having enough Biblical knowledge to discern the truth – making them susceptible to false teachings and spreading misinformation.

  • What I took from Paul on this subject, thanks to Lore’s devotional, is to pray for others first and foremost. Praying for others helps do away with the need to be right or to be seen as right.
    Sharon Miller’s book Free of Me actually addresses some of the issues brought up by either these verses or some people’s comments below. She writes about calling, work, relationships, and possessions, which is, interestingly enough, where th passage in modesty come up. Her book is humorous and full of grace!! Definitely helps takes eyes off self to God!

  • Sherry Sparks

    That put a whole new light on 1 tim 2 i just read through it today

  • Nichole Caunter

    I think for me it’s just learning how to forgive when people have hurt me. Or just to be okay with not being in control. A lot of times I expect for people to give me the same respect or loyalty and when they dont I become very hurt. In order for me to live in peace and godliness, I believe it has to come from me and my relationship with Christ. Trusting him with my eternity but also in my everyday life. I would say that is what I took from it.

  • Pua Johnson

    Crazy to read this because lately I’ve been praying for just this, for obedience towards my husband, to be able to submit to him and his needs. He does so much for me and my son and then I say, act or treat him in return in some ugly way. I ask forgiveness from our Father and pray that he teaches me to submit, to be quiet, to humble myself. I’m not always wrong, but I’m definitely not always right either; it’s time to humble myself to that fact, as God would have wanted me to.

  • I think it’s interesting that the passage specifically highlights kings and authorities, not our enemies or people we don’t get along with, out of ‘all people’ that we are to pray for. This one is a hard thing to follow but I believe is necessary for living in peace under those in authority over us. And I never really paid attention to the ‘first of all’… but I’m glad this devo pointed it out.

  • Kim Riley

    test

  • Alison Walker

    I appreciate your thoughts, Lore, since I don’t know if I’ll ever read this chapter without having some difficult feelings.

  • Reading this was great. As I read it I was thinking of my really large family, and how alot of my aunts and uncles don’t get a long with each other, because of silly arguments in the past. This would be really helpful if they read it.

  • Melanie Bisson

    Oh how our God is on time God! Just yesterday I found myself praying and asking for forgiveness after I got into an unnecessary, heated battle on FB. Thank you, Lord for the reminder to lead with prayer, grace, and peace and pray BEFORE I act. Amen!!

  • Jamie WhitakerCampbell

    I love the sentiment in 2 Peter 3:14
    “Be diligent to be found by Him … at peace.” This is so countercultural in America right now. As the American church, that is part of the global church, how do we as women lead in cultivating this peace amongst the body of Believers? What must be yielded? What must be embraced?

  • A good reminder to me to pray and just care about unity among believers.

  • Diane Huntsman

    Posted before I finished or made corrections.. I just think we need to speak truth, hear truth, obey truth and stop whining. 50 years of living just causes one to see things a bit differently I think. Everyone is offended.. but how are we offending God? That’s the real question worth answering..

  • Diane Huntsman

    We never need tiptoe around Gods truths.. if we as women are offended by this passage the problem is our own.. there isn’t anything offensive to me in this text.. cover your cleavage, keep your parts covered.. we don’t get the pastor roll of the church but we can speak to women about the Bible.. I for one am tired of offenses.. we need to learn to lean in close to Jesus and listen to his wisdom dabs his exhortations and it ok if we are rubbed wrong..

    • Irina

      Thank you Diane for coming back to this site with your comments. So much wisdom and truth! Looking forward to hear from you more.

  • Lauren Kilpatrick

    This isn’t necessarily about this devo- but as a busy full time college student and part time teacher this app is just wonderful for getting that bible time in on the go while getting community as well!!! thank you beautiful ladies for being a part of it

  • Rebekah Wood

    Sometimes I am so busy trying to “do” “serve” ” fix” that I neglect to ” do” the most important thing! Pray! It is God who does the work not I. He has called me to come to Him, to be Still, and to Rest.

    • Alisa

      I agree! I am guilty of that too as a person who always wants to be doing things, that I forget that I can’t control all aspects of my life and that’s when I remember that God guides me and that I need to rest in Him.

  • Michelle Everatt
  • Oh how I wish I could go back to the days when as a woman I could stay home and take care of my husband, my children, and our home. Many of you are too young to know how wonderful that was. We didn’t NEED all the fancy items that everyone seems to think they need today. Life was calm, and quiet. We all had time for God, family and friends. Today it is more important to have a nicer house, (not a home, just a big expensive and immersive house) then the neighbors. A better or newer car. A bigger grill. More TOYS. No time to pray or read our bibles because we have to go out and make more money so we can have all the things we really don’t need. All the things that make us feel successful. This passage warns us of how easy this can happen. It doesn’t occur overnight. It happens slowly so we don’t see it coming.

    • joyce

      That is so true! Now as a young soon to be 19-year old I can understand the importance of this verse and after reading it, it made me think of how I should be an example to other people in my circles and make a difference as believer, so the Lord will be honored.

    • Andria Robb

      THANK YOU for sharing this! I’m a working mother who is “giving up” my career starting next week to stay home with my 11-month old and care for our family. My husband and I are so sure that this is God’s plan for our family but every time I hear about a friend or family member getting a promotion or a new house or etc etc, doubt creeps in and I wonder if we are “giving up” too much – but all we are giving up are worldy things to GAIN things that won’t pass away.

      • Leigh Ann Pridgen

        I’m a stay at home mom now too and I worried but God has provided and it’s the best job ever

        • truthseeker

          This is for the stay at home moms – GOD BLESS YOU !! You are fulfilling the God ordained purpose of being a wife and mother. You are THERE for your family. The “things” that we think that we give up are nothing compared to being able to be with your children and raise them to be Godly people. You are a wife to your husband first (do not make the mistake of putting your children first) and then Mom to your children.. Dr James Dobson wrote many years ago (this is my paraphrase) that even if you find the most perfect caretaker for your children it still comes down to the fact that no one is as interested in your children as you are. God blessed you with your children so honor that blessing by being there for them.

    • Rhonda

      I so agree Pamela, thanks for saying it! I am 49, and I already see how everyone is so busy, too much stuff, no time to hang out with family and be together!

  • God wants us to have a different perspective on all areas of life than the world has. Instead of mocking our leaders and those in authority, we are to pray for them. Instead of dressing immodestly and acting immoral, we as women are to practice self-control, and are to make sure that our actions profess godliness. Men are to pray, worship and rid themselves of all anger and quarreling.

    Lord help us to honor you.

  • Sabrina Michelle

    Rest in the finish works of Jesus❤️ I’m learning to fall back from controversy because we serve a loving God. To follow Him is not by a set of rules but build in relationship with Him and the Holy Spirit as my guide.

  • So many conflicts have been started and maintained by labeling a group of people as “other.” Us vs them. And yet we are all children of God. How many debates could we avoid by first acknowledging the personhood of the “other” and praying on their behalf? We might actually be able to solve a problem vs just arguing. I am guilty of not praying for our leaders and just writing them off as other. I pray God will change my heart in this area.

  • Rebekah Wood

    Sometimes I am so busy trying to “do” trying to “serve” trying to “ fix” that I don’t “do” the most important thing. Pray!! It is God who does the work not I. Quiet my soul Lord.

  • Rebekah Wood

    Sometimes I am so busy wanting to “do” wanting to “serve” wanting to “fix what’s broken” that I don’t take time to “do” the most important thing… pray!! It is God who does the work and the “ fixing”… not I.Quiet my soul Lord.

  • Loved the focus of this reading, but also wanted an explanation for the last verse. Here’s a great one from John Piper https://www.desiringgod.org/articles/how-are-women-saved-through-childbearing

  • Em Kronenwetter

    I have been through a lot over the past 2 years and have found myself wanting to pray and pray and pray for everyone who is struggling around me and to pray and pray and pray to thank God for every little thing that I have, in hopes that He won’t take it away from me (we lost our firstborn in January when she was 14 months old, 2 days after her baby brother was born).

    With that being said, I find myself awake at night feeling guilty about things that I forgot to pray about.. does anyone have any helpful suggestions on how I can be sure to pray for everything specifically on my heart each day? I try to limit my long praying for 2 or 3 times a day, solely because I feel that I would sit and pray the whole day away. Thanks in advance.

    • Cait G

      Hi Em! I am so terribly sorry for your loss. I have caught myself in moments with my own children and just life in general thinking “am I covering them with all the prayers I need to?!” We can find peace in knowing that the Holy Spirit is our mediator. He is with us in Spirit at all times. He goes before us knowing the groans of our heart when we can’t put them to words or we worry the words of our uttered prayers aren’t enough.

      “In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.”
      ‭‭Romans‬ ‭8:26-27‬ ‭NIV‬‬

    • Ana Silva

      I’m not a mother so I can’t imagine but I can pray for you. Our Easter sermon at church was such a great message of how we live out the Fridays (the cross), Saturdays (the days of mourning, pain and questioning faith) and Sundays (resurrection, miracles, redemption, glory – your best days ever). In the olive grove at the garden of Gethsemane Jesus told Peter, John and James to “stay here with me.” He needed friends in His anguish on Friday. He also prayed His heart out during this time. I’m wondering if a full day of prayer with your husband and close friends isn’t a bad idea?

      I don’t believe your prayers need to be fancy. And they also don’t have to touch everything you may have guilt about – the beautiful thing is, He already knows them. All you have to do is ask for you guilt to be covered in His grace. And when you can verbalize a specific thing that you want to part about than do so!

    • Celine B

      Hi, Em! I am very sorry to hear you lost your daughter. The amazing thing is that God knows your heart! And in this study, we still see how important prayer is. Romans 8:26 says, “In the same way, the Spirit comes to help our weakness. We don’t know what we should pray, but the Spirit himself pleads our case with unexpressed groans.” God knows what you desire, what you need, he knows your every thought; So it’s okay to not always know or remember what to pray for! Maybe start a prayer journal, where you can write down a prayer or request whenever you think of one. Then before bed you can open it up and tell God what you need! Prayer doesn’t always look like sitting on your knees with your head bowed and eyes closed. If you have a prayer throughout the day, just talk to God and lift that up to him; while your in your car, at work, at the grocery store! I hope this offers some encouragement, Em! I’ll have you in my prayers!
      ‭‭

    • Amy E.

      First off, I would just like to take a moment to say I’m so very sorry to hear about your loss..
      We serve a God who gives, and takes away according to His divine plan for our lives. This can be a daunting reality, but rest in the promise of eternity where there will be no more sorrow, pain, or loss of any kind.

      When I feel burdened by the brokenness around me, I always start by committing it to the Lord. Sometimes writing it down in my prayer journal and verbally committing it to Him frees me from having to carry the weight of it around with me. After I’ve committed it to Him, it’s important to understand that He hears you (2 Kings 20:5). I sometimes don’t pray again for that same thing until I feel the heaviness in my heart again because Romans 8:26-27 tells us that, “In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.”

      I hope you find this helpful in your prayers, beloved. He knows His sheep and our hearts.

    • Trisha

      Em, God knows your heart and your mind and guilt is not from Him. I’m so sorry for your loss, pour out your heart to Him, remind Him in prayer that He knows all things, so what you may be forgetting to pray for specifically, that He would cover it, ask Him to search your heart and invite the Holy Spirit to remind you during the day of things on your heart to pray for, we can, like Brother Lawerence be in a constant communication with Him throughout our day. He doesn’t take away because we do not pray, invite Him into that pain.

    • Churchmouse

      Oh Em I’m so sorry to hear about the passing of your daughter. And I’m so glad that you pour out your heart to our Father. May I suggest that you be sure to balance your prayer life so that you are praising even more than praying. When I recount Who God is, I see that He is more than able to take care of all my concerns. The solutions are not dependent on me but on Him. As I have increased my time in praise, I find myself praying less need – based. I find myself thanking Him in advance for what He’s going to do. I leave the timing and the manner and the results in His capable and loving hands. He knows better than I and He has the complete picture. A simple way to do this is to use the alphabet – and name His character with each letter. A: Adonai. Alpha. Absolute. Almighty. B=Bread of life. Beautiful. Bountiful. C=Christ. Complete. Compassionate. Creator. Comforter. You get the idea. Inevitably what I’m praying about, He is. That invigorates my prayer life rather than feeling overwhelmed and burdened. I am able to more fully release my cares to Him and leave them at His throne. He’s handling it all. I hope this helps.

    • Kimberly

      Oh sweet sister in Christ, I am so very sorry for your loss! I can’t even imagine the depths of the loss you feel. Praying that the balm of Gilead, Jesus Himself, will bring peace to your heart today. Lasting peace will only come as you are able to trust in the Lord and his plans for you. It seems from your post that you’re worried you’re missing things in your prayers and fearful that what you have, He will take away if you don’t pray properly or enough. 1 John 4:18 states “There is no fear in love; but perfect love cast our fear, because fear involves torment…” (NKJV). In my own life I have been tormented by my fears and it’s a terrible treadmill that seems to never stop. The off button is trusting Jesus. Meditate on the Word of God and the truth you find there trusting that God is good and He does good and then to pray for those around you and for your family too. My friend lost her son two years ago and writes about her grief and walking through it with Jesus at thebrokensinew.com. She’s a beautiful writer. You may find her words helpful. May the Lord bless you and keep you dear one.

    • Holly Cloud

      I too struggled with prayer, and I never knew where to start and I felt guilty if I left anyone out. I went to someone that I respect and asked them about how they pray. They told me that God knows what you need because he is with you always. You don’t always have to explicitly sit down and pray for everything you care about and everyone. Because He already knows what you need.

    • Kathy Hensley

      I know that God is with you every step of the way. I know because I also lost a child. It took me several years of grieving but through it all the Holy Spirit was with me. His constant love gave me the courage to face the pain and slowly work through it. I found journaling very helpful to get my feelings out in a safe way. It has now been 3.5 years and I look forward to my life. I will never stop missing my son but I now honor him with my life. Through Jesus there is hope. He is with you in the deep water.

  • This is the first study I have actually done as it is posted each morning, and not from months back, so I have the pleasure of actually joining in the conversation. I actually read today’s passage and devotional twice, and I believe the first time I truly missed everything. I find it difficult to pray, more so than read, because it takes more devotion to actually having a two way conversation. I often skip praying until I have something to ask for or about, and typically don’t make prayer a daily discipline. However I woke up all too early this morning because my sleep was disturbed by a minor illness. I can easily get the medicine necessary to cure it, however I sense God wants me to pray that He heals and to show me more of Himself through this circumstance. Would anyone who feels led join me and pray as well, that God heals and His purpose for this circumstance and how He wants to use it in our relationship is revealed to me? Thanks!

    • Alexis

      I am sorry you are feeling unwell. I will pray for healing and a devotion to prayer. I struggle praying each day too.

    • She Reads Truth

      We’re so glad that you’re reading along with us Sara, and we’re praying for you! -Margot, The SRT Team

  • Kat Smith

    I’m thankful that today’s author didn’t gloss over these verses at the end, but addressed them straight away. And with that, what a lovely way of bringing light to these verses without making them the main focus of the devotional. Our hearts should read these passages through the lenses of the Holy Spirit, with wisdom and trust that these words are in Scripture for our GOOD. Thank you for bringing the focus back, realigning our lenses, so that the main thing remains the main thing.

  • Beautiful job with such a complicated message. Conflict makes me want to skip away. Im praying to improve my supplication for my enemies.

  • Kelly Chataine

    Behave yourself, that is what I hear. Behave yourself, pray, intercede, and give thanks.

  • Churchmouse

    Pray first and foremost. Yes. Pray with humility. I then read the verses that follow and I dig out (and Google) commentaries for further explanation. I want to know the full counsel of God regarding all the verses. I don’t want to avoid the hard verses just because I want to avoid controversy or conflict. I want to try to understand : simply and as best I can. I scratch my head and wonder which interpretation /explanation is right. The commentators are learned and wise folk who have perused long and hard. I have personal experiences and anecdotal evidence that weighs in also. I’m still left scratching my head. 1 Timothy 2: 4 looms large : God our Savior wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. All means all. No gender distinction. I want to know the truth and I want to learn from those who have the truth. It matters not to me whether they are male or female. The truth is what matters. Any gender can distort the truth, manipulate the truth, be self serving with the truth – and thereby negate the truth. That is the greater tragedy. Not who is doing the teaching but whether it is Truth that is being taught. Where there are different interpretations… I scratch my head and pray with humility. I choose not to be argumentative. When I see Jesus face to face, I will know fully. In the meantime… I share the indisputable way to salvation, God our Savior. That will please Him. That’s the truth.

    • Gina Glennon

      Yes, love your comment that we will know fully when we see Jesus face to face! Always are blessed by your thoughtful insights.

    • Jenny

      I’m with you. I want to talk about the hard to stuff too. especially where womanhood is involved. But I think Kelly Chataine has it right… behave yourself. For me personally, I know my own voice and opinion has a lot of weight in my marriage. my husband is always inclined to follow my lead but this is not how God created our roles to be. Naturally we are decision makers and I think thats why we are instructed to be quiet. Not “shut up” quiet but quiet in our souls/hearts and actions. Not being boisterous but leading a tranquil, peaceful example of Christ.

      • Kris

        I agree with what you said. And my Bible says the word Paul uses for silent in v.12 means “an attitude of quietness & composure”, there is a different Greek word for complete silence. So he’s not saying be silent, but be an example ofChrist just as you all have said.

      • Emily R.

        Thank you ladies for your input, your responses have been very helpful!

  • Give thanks before theologize. Grateful for this truthful perspective today. Something that has been stirring in my heart for months now but I couldn’t build words around. Thank you!

    But I still ache to learn more about the end of the Chapter and what it means now.

  • Denise Powers Fabian

    I woke up from a disturbing dream and could not return to sleep. And then I read this passage about prayer in 2 Timothy and know that the dream was to convict me to pray for those in my dream. God is faithful.

  • Jessie Lamb

    “One part that stuck out to me was “…for kings and those in high positions”. As I read this I was reminded of the need to pray for our country’s leaders and other world leaders as they lead.

  • Christina Bell

    A great reminder! To pray for ALL. Start with prayers petitions and intercession. Start with putting their needs above what “I think” is the starting point. Thank you Holy Spirit for the reminder. Keep this in my heart all day.

  • Lorrie Bee

    One thing that sin and shame steals from us is any sense of dignity. It is so very humbling and encouraging to read that God himself wants to restore our dignity. And he tells us how, right here. Pray. Not for our selfish wants and desires, but for the Holy Spirit to work in the lives of others, especially those in authority over us. “That we may lead a peaceful and quiet life…”

    God “desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.” We get to play a part in bringing that about. Pray. Without ceasing. Pray.

  • Kathy Hensley

    This is my first day back to SRT in many months & WOW how God speaks to me with his word! I am in authority and in a season of challenge. I have been praying for clarity and here it is. Prayers, supplication, intercession, and thanksgiving. He loves us so much that He does reveal himself. We just have to be open and seek thru his Word & prayer. I am So glad to be back to SRT!

  • Thank you for demonstrating faith, love holiness and good sense on a section of scripture that is generally anything but tranquil. Thank you for bringing peace and wisdom to words that often bring chaos and unthinking.
    You’ve reminded us that Scripture shouldn’t always be about how it affects me and the way I want to live, it’s about how we lift our eyes outward from ourselves and bless others in our words and actions.

  • Thank you Lore. I needed this perspective. I work in Christian radio and we encourage our listeners to pray for the leadership of South Africa. As people share the Facebook posts I put out there others hotly defend the need to pray and radicalize or racialise it. You put it beautifully into perspective. #amen #praySA

  • Very thought provoking, thank you so very much for this.

Further Reading...