First, there is precedent in the pastorals for Paul’s use of plural anthropos in a gender-specific way. In 2 Timothy 3:8, for instance, Paul writes, “Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so also these men oppose the truth–men [anthrÅpoi] of depraved minds, who, as far as the faith is concerned, are rejected.” The anthrÅpoi here must be men since they are “worming their way into women’s homes” (Mounce,Pastoral Eptistles, p. 550). If this is correct, then the anthrÅpoi of both 3:2 and 3:13 should be understood as males as well. Consider also the anthrÅpoi of 1 Timothy 5:24: “The sins of some men are quite evident, going before them to judgment; for others, their sins follow after.” In context, Paul is telling Timothy to be careful about whom he appoints as elders (v. 5:22: “Do not lay hands on a man too quickly”). Since Paul held to an all male eldership (1 Timothy 2:12; 3:2), the anthrÅpoi of 5:24 must also be males. Given Paul’s use of anthrÅpoi in a gender-specific way both in the pastorals and elsewhere (e.g., 1 Corinthians 7:7), we have to allow for the possibility that context can determine anthrÅpoi with a masculine referent.
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23 thoughts on “2 Timothy 2:2”
Terry Wiles just to respond to your question
“In 2 Timothy 2:2 does “anthropoi” mean “men” or “mankind” (which is gender neutral)? I note that the subject is plural.
Would an acceptable reading be “to faithful people?””
The phrase pistois anthrÅ�pois could be translated as ‘faithful people,’ since anthrÅ�pos is inclusive for all humans, in contrast to anÄ“r, which can mean only males. I translate ‘faithful men,’ however, because that is clearly what the text means. In the case of the Pastorals, an attempt to create a gender-inclusive translation only camoflouges the pervasive androcentrism of the composition. For better or for worse, the assumptions of the author’s culture (or place within his culture) should be accepted by the translation. It is the task of hermeneutics to decide what to do about those assumptions
Paul says the bishop should be a man. The singular is gender specific right?
It is true that the plural of anthropos is often used generically (e.g., 1 Tim 2:1, 4; 4:10; 6:5; 2 Tim 3:2; Tit 2:11; 3:2)
The singular is always gender specific in my understanding. However the plural is not always.
Terry There is some play to the word if you resort to man vs husband but as far as the masculine it’s pretty well understood
Troy Day Man versus husband is how it is translated. It is just one word in Greek. The Greek speakers in the first century would not have sat around wondering how to translate it into English.
It’s not that simple Link The plural of anthropos is often used generically (e.g., 1 Tim 2:1, 4; 4:10; 6:5; 2 Tim 3:2; Tit 2:11; 3:2)
Just for starters our limited translation will have MANY Problems with antrops in 1 Timothy 2:4
Does JESUS want all men to be saved or all men and women? Terry Wiles
Exactly. Does Jesus want just men to teach others or men and women. That’s the point of my op.
Acts is clear that your sons and daughters will…
2 Tim 2 2 is Paul speaking not Jesus Paul may have been exclusive on this one – father to son generational teaching / training. This by no means reflect men only in ministry It is too specific to be generalized broadly
Paul or Jesus, it is still the Word of God.
OK – how do you explain that Jesus said make disciples and Paul said train men?
Nope. More of reading too much in the text and wanting it to speak to a 21c bias the text never meant to address
You sound like a fundamentalist.
which I am, but I just dont see it in the text
Cultural and fundamentalist bias. It is also easy to take a corrective passage like Paul not permitting women to speak and overly misinterpret that as a foundational doctrine.
just not in the text
It is if the word in the plural can be used as either men or mankind as is often the case.
The plural of anthropos is often used generically (e.g., 1 Tim 2:1, 4; 4:10; 6:5; 2 Tim 3:2; Tit 2:11; 3:2)
yes. I am aware of that
still does not help much in 2 Tim 2 2
Terry Wiles as pointed to Link Hudson above – the plural of anthropos when used generically includes women with men
When they said a man/husband back then it was implied he had a wife and the wife is included in his very being – his way of being. This is also true when someone states the BIBLE is not gender neutral. Truth is the BIBLE is not neutral but it is inclusive in the sense that it includes all women too when it says Jesus wants all men to be saved
Terry Wiles I lost you there somewhere brother