A woman must quietly receive instruction with entire submissiveness. But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet.
(1 Timothy 2:11, 12)
There is little disagreement among biblically knowledgeable Christians that only qualified men are to be appointed Elders and Pastor-Teachers, as well as, be the leaders in the Church. God has clearly ordained that it is the men who are to have the authority and responsibility of shepherding and teaching the Bible in His Church. But should women also be Bible teachers?
Since the beginning of the Church in Acts chapter two there has been controversy and confusion regarding the biblical role of women in the Church. Some of this controversy can be traced back to the Garden of Eden and the consequences of Eve's sin; ...yet your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you. (Genesis 3:16b). Eve's desire was to have the same authority and rule as her husband (see Genesis 4:7 for a similar use of the word "desire").
Many believe that the verses in second Timothy don't preclude women from teaching biblical doctrine to other women, just not to teach, nor exercise authority over men. However, the Greek word used in Timothy for "teach" is "didasko", from which we get our English word "didactic". This word is frequently used in the New Testament and always refers to the authoritative, expository teaching of sound biblical doctrine by the men. As the Apostle Paul wrote to Timothy; Prescribe and teach (didasko) these things. (1 Timothy 4:11)
Furthermore, all Bible teachers have an implied authority over their listeners and this authority is the exclusive responsibility of the men in the Churches; The women are to keep silent in the churches; for they are not permitted to speak, but are to subject themselves, just as the Law also says. If they desire to learn anything, let them ask their own husbands at home; for it is improper for a woman to speak in church. (1 Corinthians 14:34-35)
The question then becomes: Are women permitted to teach (didasko) expository Bible studies to other women when men are not present? I think the answer is that women are not to teach (didasko) Bible studies, nor exercise authority over either men or other women. The Apostle Paul goes on to write to Timothy that the reasons women are not allowed to teach and are to keep silent in the Churches is because of the order of creation and that women are more easily deceived by Satan; For it was Adam who was first created, and then Eve. And it was not Adam who was deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression. (1 Timothy 2:13, 14). Of course men can also be deceived by Satan. But would the Holy Spirit give the Spiritual gift of teaching (didasko) to women who are prone to deception? Many of the false doctrines and destructive heresies that have come into the churches were first introduced through well-meaning, but deceived women.
In Titus chapter two, the older women are instructed to teach and encourage the young women; ...teaching what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored. (Titus 2:3-5)The Greek words Paul uses for "teaching" in these verses has a much different meaning and connotation than "didasko". "Teaching what is good" meaning to moderate, to discipline, to school or to train both by what is said and by example. This teaching is limited to the practical aspects of loving their husbands and children. Obviously, it is good and acceptable for the older women to know and refer to the Bible and base their training of young women upon sound biblical doctrines. However, there is a difference between this important responsibility of the older women in the Church to train the young women and expository (didasko) Bible teaching which is the biblical responsibility of the men in the Church.
Paul's instructions to Timothy and Titus regarding the role of women in the Churches are often dismissed because they are not "culturally relevant" or "politically correct" in our modern society. Some even try to make the argument that Paul was simply expressing his own personal chauvinistic views. However, the Apostle Paul's writings were inspired by the Holy Spirit and transcend time, cultural and political correctness.
Finally, this isn't about men vs. women, intellectual superiority, education, personal preferences, cultural relevance, political correctness or gender equality. It is about being biblical and obedient to the Word of God and to the glory of God in His Church. Maranatha!