L-11. What does 1 TIMOTHY 2:9,10,15 Truly Mean?



Let us begin this study in God’s word by reading 1 Timothy 2:9-10, 15 WITHOUT verses 11-14.

1 Timothy 2:9-10,15.

“In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; 

10.  But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works...

...15  Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.” 

The videos that I will give you links to at the end of this study in God’s word expounds on four or five different interpretations of verse 15. So a good way to start this study is to show you how ridiculous some of those interpretations are and how dangerous they can be by bringing bondage and fear to women.

The first interpretation of verse 15 that is being wrongly taught is that women can NOT be saved UNLESS the bear children. In other words, some women live in FEAR that if they do not bear at least one child then they can NOT be saved.

Now, that is a strange and even ridiculous belief to most Christians who know that bearing children in order for women to be saved is NOT taught by the WHOLE word of Almighty God. But to the women who have been DECEIVED by such false teaching, it is not so “funny” because they sincerely believe that if they do not have a child they can NOT be saved.

The second interpretation of verse 15 is that we are saved BECAUSE OF the VIRGIN BIRTH of Jesus. In other words, SINCE it was EVE’S FAULT that sin entered the world then it was NEEDED for a WOMAN to bear a child to SAVE the world. Now while this interpretation may sound plausible and even interesting when hearing it for the first time, it is NOT sound Biblical teaching either. For you see, this verse is saying “childbearing” which is the act of bearing children and NOT that the CHILD itself is what saves.

Also, this Scripture is saying that the WOMEN, as in, SPECIFICALLY ONLY the women will be saved IN their act or PROCESS of bearing children. And I might add that the verb “SAVE” here in verse 15 is in the FUTURE tense. And this verse literally reads “Notwithstanding she SHALL be BEING SAVED saved IN childbearing if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety” So to ME, this second interpretation is NOT sound Biblical teaching either even though it is true that a CHILD was BORN to be the Savior of the world.

The third interpretation is that since we are FREED from the CURSE of the law according to Galatians 3:13 then that means that CHRISTIAN women need NOT suffer the curse of PAIN while bearing children IF they CONTINUE in the FAITH and love living holy and “sōphrosunē”. Now, I used the Greek word “sōphrosunē” rather than the English translated word “sobriety” in the King James Version because the Greek word has more than just the one meaning of sobriety.

The English word “sobriety” today is understood to mean to be sober or free from the addiction of alcoholism. But in Old English, it means self-control. Here is what E-Sword says the Greek word “sōphrosunē” means. And if you do not have E-Sword downloaded on your computer please click on the blue link and it will open a new page to the BlueletterBible study tool.





From G4998; soundness of mind, that is, (literally) sanity or (figuratively) self-control: - soberness, sobriety.

Total KJV occurrences: 3

This Greek word is used just three times in the New Testament and two of those three times are right here in 1 Timothy chapter 2. It is used once here in verse 15 and once in verse 9. And the only other time it is used is in Acts 26:25. So let us compare Scripture with Scripture and read Acts 26:25 to see the meaning of how it is used in that verse of Scripture.

Acts 26:24,25.

“And as he thus spake for himself, Festus said with a loud voice, Paul, you are beside yourself; (Or Paul you are INSANE) much learning does make you mad. (Or much learning makes you sound crazy and out of your mind)

25.  But he said I am not mad, (Or I am not out of my mind like you think) most noble Festus; but speak forth the words of TRUTH and soberness.”

Paul is saying that he is speaking out of a SOBER MIND and not out of the mind of a lunatic. Paul is saying that he knows full well what he has been taught by Jesus to preach even though it sounds blasphemous to the Jews. Keep in mind that Paul is being charged by the Jews with teaching false doctrine because of teaching against the customs of the Jews. And Paul defends the Gospel by saying that even he himself persecuted the church thinking that he was doing God a service until his vision of Jesus on the road to Damascus and he was converted to Christianity. And now, Paul must be obedient to the VISION. To say this another way, NOW Paul understands that the Law of Moses contained in ORDINANCES was a SCHOOLMASTER leading the Jews TO Jesus and AFTER a Jew believes in Jesus as his or her Lord and Savior then they are NO LONGER UNDER the Law of Moses contained in ordinances or any of the Jewish CUSTOMS. That is the CONTEXT of all of Paul’s teaching.

Also, remember that the Old English meaning of soberness or sobriety means to be of a SOUND MIND. So when you understand that “sobriety” means SOUNDNESS of MIND then we can compare Scripture with Scripture to see what else the Bible says about having a SOUND MIND.

Please read 1 Timothy 1:7-9.

For God has NOT given us the spirit of FEAR; but of power, and of love, and of a SOUND MIND(So then, part of the meaning of having a SOUND MIND is to have a mind FREE from FEAR. Always remember that in order to find the true sound Biblical CORRECT meaning of a verse of Scripture we need to interpret the verse IN its CONTEXT. So 1 Timothy 2:15 is a PART of the context here in 1 Timothy 1:7-9. Please notice that Paul is teaching Timothy to NOT be fearful or ashamed to teach the TRUE Gospel of Jesus Christ. That is what fear means in this particular context. But the fear in the context of 1 Peter 3:15 is the fear of the PAIN in childrearing as you will see when we get to interpretation number FOUR. So I believe in both interpretation number three and interpretation number four but I believe they should be taught together as ONE and the SAME interpretation. Again, you will see what I mean as you continue reading)

8.  Be NOT you THEREFORE ashamed of the testimony of our Lord nor of me his prisoner: but be you a partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God; (In other words, Paul is teaching Timothy to teach us to not cower down to the Jewish Judaizing Christians that are wrongly subverting and compelling Christians to keep the Jewish CUSTOMS and to keep the Law of Moses contained in ORDINANCES that Jesus abolished at the cross according to Ephesians 2:15. So do not fear persecution from the Jewish Judaizing Christians or the unsaved Jews. Be bold to preach Jesus)

9.  Who has saved us, and called us with a holy calling, NOT according to our WORKS, (Speaking of the works of the Law of Moses contained in ORDINANCES and all the Jewish CUSTOMS) but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,”

So then, when we interpret 1 Peter 3:15 in the LIGHT of NOT FEARING the contention from preaching to NO LONGER keep the CUSTOMS of the Jews we can see that Paul was teaching against the keeping of  CUSTOMS. But verse 15 is NOT about a custom of the Jews. Rather, it was a custom of the GENTILES and more particularly it was the custom of the EX-pagan Gentile WOMEN who worshiped the female goddess Diana. And this brings us to interpretation number FOUR which is that the WOMEN in 1 Peter 3:15 were departing from the TRUE faith in Jesus to revert back to praying to their pagan goddess Diana to be protected from the pain and possible death in CHILDBEARING. These same EX-pagan Gentile female goddess worshipers were still dressing like they dressed when they went into the pagan temples and Paul was teaching them that dressing up to please the men in their temple worship was NOT the purpose of the Christians church services. When you read the CONTEXT you can see that Paul starts out by teaching these new ex-pagan Christian converts that in Christianity we worship ONE God. And we will get to all of that shortly. But first I want you to see for yourself the PAGAN CULTURE of the Ephesian Gentiles and all of Asia from which came many Christians who had a lot of pagan CUSTOMS that they practiced all their pagan lives. And just like the Jewish Christians had a hard time no longer keeping their Jewish CUSTOM so did the Gentile pagan Christians had to learn to no longer keep their pagan CUSTOMS.

Please read Acts 19:17-41.


“And this was known to all the Jews and Greeks also dwelling at Ephesus, and fear fell on them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified. (According to the commentary after 2 Timothy 4:22, Timothy was the first ordained bishop, pastor, elder, or overseer of the Ephesians church)

18. And many that BELIEVED came, and confessed, and showed their deeds. (That they truly and sincerely believed in Jesus as their Savior by burning their pagan books) 

19.  Many of them also which used curious arts brought their books together and burned them before all men: and they counted the price of them, and found it fifty thousand pieces of silver.  (Again, these NEW believers at Ephesus burned all their pagan books and idols which showed their faith in Jesus was genuine)

20.  So mightily grew the word of God and prevailed. (In other words, there were many Gentile pagan men AND WOMEN in Ephesus and in all of Asia who became true sincere born-again Christians)

21.  After these things were ended, (Speaking of the NEW Christians burning all of their things pertaining to their pagan gods) Paul purposed in the spirit when he had passed through Macedonia and Achaia, to go to Jerusalem, saying, After I have been there, I must also see Rome. (Please notice that this was what Paul was PLANNING to do and did do eventually) 

22.  So he sent into Macedonia two of them that ministered unto him, Timotheus and Erastus; but he himself stayed in Asia for a season. (Again, Paul was PLANNING to send Timothy but BEFORE Paul actually sent Timothy a RIOT broke out, and both Paul and Timothy were in Ephesus during that riot. We know this because verse 30 teaches us that Paul was STILL there in Ephesus when the riot broke out. Paul wanted to go into the temple to calm things down but the disciples restrained him. You will see what I mean when we get to verses 30 and 31)

23.  And the same time there arose no small stir about that WAY. (The WAY is speaking of Christianity. The Gentile pagans were stirred up against Christianity because the one’s doing the stirring up were losing money. They were idol makers and because of Christianity, their sales hit bottom so to speak. The EX-pagans who became Christians stopped buying their pagan goods)

24.  For a certain man named Demetrius, a silversmith, which made silver shrines for Diana, brought no small gain unto the craftsmen; (In other words, they made a lot of money selling idols. But what I want you to notice is that the pagan Ephesians worshiped a FEMALE deity. This is very important information to understand in order to know and understand the TRUE SOUND Biblical meaning of 1 Timothy 3:9-15)

25.  Whom he (Demetrius, a pagan idol maker) called together with the workmen of like occupation, and said, Sirs, you know that by this craft we have our wealth. 

26.  Moreover, you see and hear, that not alone at Ephesus, but almost throughout all Asia, this Paul has persuaded and turned away many people, saying that they be no gods, which are made with hands

27.  So that not only this our craft is in danger to be set at naught; but also that the temple of the great goddess Diana should be despised, and her magnificence should be destroyed, whom ALL Asia and the world worships

28.  And when they heard these sayings, they were full of wrath, and cried out, saying, Great is Diana of the Ephesians

29.  And the whole city was filled with confusion: and having caught Gaius and Aristarchus, men of Macedonia, Paul's companions in travel, they rushed with one accord into the theater. 

30.  And when Paul would have entered in unto the people, the disciples suffered him not

31.  And certain of the chief of Asia, which were his friends, sent unto him, desiring him that he would not adventure himself into the theater

32.  Some, therefore, cried one thing, and some another: for the assembly was confused; and the more part knew not wherefore they have come together. (In other words, it was like a riot where most of the people were stirred up to riot but they did not know the reason WHY they were rioting)

33.  And they (Some of the Gentile pagan rioters) drew Alexander out of the multitude, the Jews putting him forward. And Alexander beckoned with the hand and would have made his defense unto the people. 

34.  But when they knew that he was a Jew, all with one voice about the space of TWO HOURS, Great is Diana of the Ephesians

35.  And when the town-clerk had appeased the people, he said, You men of Ephesus, what man is there that knows not how that the city of the Ephesians is a worshipper of the great goddess Diana, and of the image which fell down from Jupiter

36.  Seeing then that these things cannot be spoken against, you ought to be quiet and to do nothing rashly. (In other words, the town-clerk of the city of Ephesus is calming down the riot lest the rioters take the law into their own hands to do something rash that would later cause them to be put into prison)

37.  For you (Rioters) have brought here these men, which are neither robbers of churches, nor yet blasphemers of your goddess. (In other words, there is no sound evidence YET against these men)

38.  Wherefore if Demetrius, and the craftsmen which are with him, have a matter against any man, the law is open, and there are deputies: let them implead one another. 

39.  But if ye enquire anything concerning other matters, it shall be determined in a lawful assembly. 

40.  For we are in danger to be called in question for this day's uproar, there being no cause whereby we may give an account of this concourse. 

41.  And when he had thus spoken, he dismissed the assembly.” 


Now, the main point of this whole passage of Scripture is for you to see how PASSIONATE the Gentile pagans were in the worship of the FEMALE goddess Diana. And when you do your own research on the female goddess Diana, the goddess OF the EPHESIANS and in ALL of Asia as the Scriptures teach us here in Acts 19, then you will find that the WOMEN were the LEADERS in their pagan temple to Diana who told their MEN what to do.

So when these Gentile pagan women became brand NEW Christians they knew NOTHING about NOT lording over other Christians. They were very outspoken women who were in the HABIT of ordering their MEN around. Also, the pagan women of Ephesus and throughout Asia braided their hair with fine expensive gold ornaments and pearls.  That was their CUSTOM and how they dressed in their pagan temples. In other words, they dressed like they were going to the prom or a fancy high-society ballroom dance when they went to church because that is HOW they were accustomed to dressing when they went into their pagan temple in the past. Remember that they were brand NEW Christians.

So then, now that you understand that the female goddess of the Ephesians and ALL of Asia was the CORE of their pagan society, you should also know that their goddess Diana was consider to be the MOTHER of all. And that the society of all of Asia was a strongly matriarchal society which means that the WOMEN were the LEADERS in their pagan religious services. And please understand that the women in that pagan culture even held offices in their government as well. Also, their goddess Diana was the goddess of CHILDBIRTH and the Gentile pagan women prayed to her for them to have EASY painless childbirth.

So then, 1 Peter 3:15 is about CORRECTING this Gentile pagan BELIEF or pagan CUSTOM for the women to pray to their “PAGAN” goddess to be delivered from the PAIN of childbirth. For you see, the Greek word “SOZO” which is translated as “SHALL be SAVED” in verse 15 also means to be DELIVERED, SET FREE, and PROTECTED in CHILDBEARING.

So to me, while interpretation number three does indeed have some validity and plausibility, I myself believe that interpretation number four is the best possible interpretation between the four interpretations. For you see, when you read the CONTEXT of 1 Timothy 2:8-15 you can see that Paul started out by teaching that in Christianity we worship ONE God.


Please read 1 Timothy 2:5-15.


“For there is ONE God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; (Paul is teaching the brand NEW Gentile EX-pagan female mother goddess worshipers who just became Christians that in Christianity there is but ONE God and ONE Lord. Paul is CORRECTING their former belief in many gods who were not gods at all, according to 1 Corinthians 8:1-6 because Paul understood that NOT every person or every new Christian has this knowledge)

6.  Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time. 

7.  Whereunto I am an ordained preacher, and an apostle, (I speak the truth in Christ, and lie not;) a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and verity. (Or in faith and TRUTH. Think about this for a moment. WHY would the Apostle Paul be DEFENDING himself as a preacher who teachers the TRUTH? It is because some of the Judaizing Jewish Christians were EXAMINING the Apostle Paul as to whether or not he is a TRUE Apostle of Jesus Christ. And Paul is CORRECTING those Jewish Judaizing Christians, BOTH MALE and female)

8.  I will, therefore, that MEN pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting. (Please notice that Paul first CORRECTS the MEN who are new baby Christians as to how Christians should pray as well at the older Judaizing Jewish Christians that prayed after their Jewish CUSTOMS to CURSE others and to give thanks to God for them not being like others)

9.  In like manner ALSO, (Or in the same way that I just corrected the MEN how to pray Paul is CORRECTING the women who just became new baby Christians that they should not dress like they used to dress in their pagan temples. But rather) that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; 

10.  But (which becomes women professing godliness) with good works. (I personally do not believe that Paul is forbidding women to NEVER fix their hair all fancy. But rather, that when they come to church they should dress modestly so as NOT to draw attention to themselves like they once did in their pagan temples to be adored by the MEN. Paul is saying NO! That is NOT how we do things in Christianity)

11.  Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. (Again, Paul was correcting these new babes in Jesus Christ that in Christianity we do NOT do things like you once did in your pagan temples. Here in the church we STAY seated and we are quiet while we are learning from the teacher. We do NOT ask questions and interrupt the teaching of God’s word. Now, Paul had no NEED to CORRECT the men because it was only the EX-Pagan WOMEN who were once the LEADERS in their pagan temples that were DISTURBING the teaching. The MEN were QUIET because in BOTH cultures, the Jewish and the Gentile cultures that were their CUSTOMS)

12.  But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. (This verse is again addressing a specific problem with the ex-pagan women who just became new born-again Christians that were accustomed to exercising AUTHORITY over their MEN. And Paul is simply saying NO! That is NOT how we do things in Christianity. Neither the men nor the women are to dogmatically demand that Christians must believe what we teach. We do NOT force others to believe the word of God. So I want you women who are accustomed to usurping authority over your men to NOT NOW any longer teach in that manner as you once did in your old pagan religion)

13.  For Adam was first formed, then Eve. 

14.  And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. 

15.  Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.”


Now, we are not told what caused these new Christians who were once ex-pagan women that used to worship female goddesses to SPEAK out against what they were being taught. But from these last three verses, we can speculate that their being CORRECTED by Paul had to do with CHILDBEARING and being saved that they did NOT understand. So to me, I see that they simply QUESTIONED what they were being taught.

For you see, if you remember, these former worshipers of Diana prayed to their female goddess to be DELIVERED from the PAIN of CHILDBEARING. Now, one Bible scholar that I came across in my research, said that verse 15 means that THROUGH the childbearing of the Virgin Mary we who BELIEVE are SAVED and thus we are delivered from the PAIN of death. So it might be that they heard some teaching on the Virgin birth and being SAVED. And that they simply misunderstood the teaching and began speaking out in church what they were taught to believe when they were leaders in their pagan temple. We simply do not know what prompted the DISTURBANCE in this church at Ephesus. So while that is much the same as interpretation number two it could be viewed as interpretation number five which to me, is still not sound Biblical teachings for the same reasons that interpretation number two is not sound Biblical teaching. We simply do not know with absolute certainty the INTENDED meaning of verse 15.

But what we do KNOW with absolute certainty is that the Apostle Paul is NOT forbidding women to TEACH in the church ANYWHERE in the New Testament because Paul used WOMEN in his ministry who were TEACHERS and PREACHERS of the gospel of Jesus Christ. It is believed by many Bible scholars that Junia was the first WOMAN Apostle. Please read the studies “CAN WOMEN TEACH IN THE CHURCH?”, and “THE ROLE OF WOMEN IN THE CHURCH!”, as well as ALL the studies under the heading >>>CAN WOMEN BE PASTORS?<<< Also, here is a link to a video teaching that I came across in my research on the role of women in the church. It is titled SAVED BY BABIES. And below are some more video teaching by others. Also, here is a link to a video teaching that I came across in my research on the role of women in the church. It is titled Women in leadership! Must women keep silent? And here is another video showing how women are faced with choosing God over their families misguided beliefs and, therefore, they are faced with LOSING their family. Twisted Scripture - 1 Timothy 2:12And below are some more video teachings by others.

Thanks for reading and may God bless you richly as you continue to seek the TRUTH of the WHOLE word of Almighty God.

Your brother in our Lord Jesus Christ,

Brother Mark.






Here are some links to some of the research sources that I used. Some of my readers have been asking for video teachings so I have been searching for some good sound Bible video teachings by others on the subject that I myself do not yet have video teachings on those particular subjects. And this is one of those subjects that I myself have not yet made any video teachings. 

Here is the link to the article that I quoted from in some of my studies on the subject of women because it was the most in-depth and unbiased article that I found.

Junia, a Female Apostle: An Examination of the Historical Record

And here are some links to some video teachings on WOMEN in the Bible.

In this first video, there are two different men teaching. The first half is from a radio teaching and in the second half, you can see the teacher. The video is around 13 minutes long.

Paul’s high view of women

In this second video below, I do not agree with his teaching on the Trinity but what I do agree with is a conclusion on the subject about the abuse of Scripture when it comes to lording over women. 

Ephesians 5:22 and 1 Timothy 2:11

The following video is also a short video that teaches us a little about Jewish CUSTOMS and how the Jews viewed women as basically their PROPERTY. I chose this video so that you can see that the Jewish Judaizing Christians did not agree with the teachings of the Apostle Paul and they were EXAMINING Paul as to whether or not he was a true Apostle of Jesus Christ.

JEWISH CUSTOM view of women 

Now, this next video teaching is rather long but I believe this man put a lot of research and study on 1 Corinthians 15:34,35 and the other verses that SEEM to teach that women must not be used by God to teach men in the church. Now, while I agree with his research on those verses I DISAGREE with his own personal opinion on women wearing head coverings. He simply failed to do any research on that particular subject of the Jewish CUSTOM of women wearing head coverings. Please understand that there are many good Bible teachers on PARTICULAR subjects BUT on OTHER subjects they may simply “PARROT” what they were previously taught by their church denomination WITHOUT doing their own in-depth Bible studies on those other subjects. Around 18 minutes into the video, he talks about Junia and later alludes to Junia being Joahna but I would listen to the whole video the entire context.


In the following video, I find one of the best explanations and teaching on 1 Corinthians 14:34,35 that I ever came across. But because this video is by a WOMAN I listed it toward the end. For you see, some may wrongly think that teaching about women by a woman might be biased. But in truth, this woman shows the PAIN that some women suffer needlessly because of false teaching. And to me, her teaching is SOUND Biblical teaching on this subject concerning women being used by God as teachers in the church.

Women in the new testament

In this next video, there is a list of the NAMES of all the women in the New Testament for those who want to do their own Bible study of how God uses women in the Bible.

NAMES of women in the New Testament 

And this last video I just added for those want-a-be scholarly type men that like quoting the Greek just to look smart.

Xenophon of Ephesus 5 and 1 Timothy 2

Derived from Greek ξενος (xenos) meaning foreign, strange and φωνη (phone) meaning voice”. That is to say, xenophone means a strange voice.