Instruction on Prayer
1Most of all, I’m writing to encourage you to pray with gratitude to God. Pray for all men with all forms of prayers and requests as you intercede with intense passion. 2And pray for every political leader # 2:2 Or “kings.” and representative, # 2:2 Or “magistrates.” so that we would be able to live tranquil, undisturbed lives, as we worship the awe-inspiring God with pure hearts. 3It is pleasing to our Savior-God to pray for them. 4He longs for everyone to embrace his life and return to the full knowledge of the truth.
5For God is one, and there is one Mediator between God and the sons of men—the true man, Jesus, the Anointed One. 6He gave himself as ransom-payment for everyone. Now is the proper time for God to give the world this witness. 7I have been divinely called as an apostle to preach this revelation, which is the truth. God has called me to be a trustworthy teacher to the nations.
8Therefore, I encourage the men to pray on every occasion # 2:8 Or “wherever you pray.” with hands lifted to God in worship with clean hearts, free from frustration or strife. # 2:8 Or “anger or scheming.”
Conduct of Women
9And that the women would also pray # 2:9 Prayer is implied, but made explicit from the context of v. 8. with clean hearts, dressed appropriately and adorned modestly and sensibly, not flaunting their wealth. # 2:9 Literally “not with braids of gold, or with pearls, or gorgeous robes.” 10But they should be recognized instead by their beautiful deeds of kindness, suitable as one who worships God.
11Let the women who are new converts # 2:11 Implied and understood by the cultural context of that day. be willing to learn with all submission to their leaders and not speak out of turn. # 2:11 Literally “quietly.” In the context of that day, it referred to women arguing with their male congregational leaders. In the temple worship of Diana, the goddess of the Ephesian people, it was most common to have female leadership. For the women who converted to Christ, their only cultural context of worship was that the women were the leaders. In the church, however, it was the men who more commonly made up the leadership of the congregations. Paul telling the women to “be willing to learn” means he was instructing them to take a respectful posture of a disciple in this new way of worshiping the true God. When Paul instructs them not to be teachers, he was apparently referring to their old religious system where it was the women who were the temple leaders and teachers of their goddess religion in Ephesus. This entire passage from 1 Tim. 2:9–15 is arguably one of the more difficult texts to translate in Paul’s writings, and has a number of plausible translations and interpretations. However, this translation has chosen to make clear what was implicitly understood by the early Christians in Ephesus, making it explicit for those of us from another culture and another era. 12I don’t advocate that the newly converted # 2:12 Implied and understood by the cultural context of that day. women be the teachers in the church, assuming authority over the men, but to live in peace. 13For God formed Adam first, # 2:13 One of the prevailing Gnostic heresies of that era was that Eve was formed first, then Adam. Paul puts that debate to rest with this verse. then Eve. 14Adam did not mislead Eve, but Eve misled him and violated the command of God. # 2:14 As translated from the Aramaic. The Greek says “Adam was not deceived but the woman was beguiled and has come into transgression.” 15Yet salvation will come through a child born by a woman, and women will be saved by that “child” if they continue in faith with love, holiness, and self-control. # 2:15 Some have interpreted the Greek text to imply that it was Mary who gave birth to Jesus and that he is the Child that saves us all and redeems womanhood. This Messianic interpretation can be found in some modern (Ellicott, Lock, Oden, von Soden, Wohlenberg) as well as ancient commentators (Ignatius, Eph., 19; Irenaeus, Haer., III.22, V.19; Justin, Dial., 100; Tertullian, De Car., XLCI, 17). See also Gen. 3:15; Gal. 4:4.