Question #17 – Does 1 Timothy 2:15 teach that Christian women are saved from judgment through giving birth to children?
Answer: Please observe the different translations:
*King James Version: “Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.”
*New King James Version: “but she shall be saved through her childbearing, if they continue in faith and love and sanctification with sobriety.”
*Revised Standard Version – “Yet woman will be saved through bearing children, if she continues in faith and love and holiness, with modesty.”
*English Standard Version – “Yet she will be saved through childbearing – if they continue in faith and love and holiness, with self-control.”
*Hugo McCord’s New Testament Translation of the Everlasting Gospel – “However, she will be saved through child-bearing if they continue in faith and love and dedication with good sense.”
*New International Version – “But women will be saved through childbearing – if they continue in faith, love and holiness with propriety.”
*Mabuting Balita para sa Ating Panahon – “Nguni’t maliligtas and babae dahil sa pagsisilang ng sanggol, kung may kababaang-loob siyang mamumuhay sa pananampalataya, pag-ibig at kabanalan.”
*Baro Naimbag a Damag Biblia – “Ngem maisalakanto ti babai babaen iti panaganakna, no la ket agtalinaed iti pammati ken ayat ken agbiag a manakem ken nasantoan.”
Questions that come out from this passage:
1. Does giving birth to children have salvific merits that will result to eternal salvation of the soul?
2. Are women being the off springs of Eve assured of safety from physical death in the process of giving birth to children due to the sin committed by Eve and the accompanying curse in Genesis 3:16, “To the woman He said: I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception; in pain you shall bring forth children; Your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you.”
3. Does the passage teach that Eve and all women suffer heavier penalty because it was Eve and not Adam who was deceived by the Devil?
Women giving birth to children are not given salvation merits based on this passage. I don’t think that the more children a woman brings into this world, the greater is her assurance of salvation.
In the context of 1 Tim. 2:1-15, male members of the assembly are the ones to lead in the corporate worship service. Women should be silent. They were reminded of their limitations in the corporate assembly. Women are not allowed to rule over the male members. Not allowed to teach the male members while in the assembly meeting. That’s why in the following chapter, male members are the ones chosen and ordained to become elders and deacons to feed the flock, to lead the family of God.
Women in this chapter are given special attention. There was the shortcoming of Eve: she was the one who was deceived by the Devil (v. 13) and fell into transgression. The singular pronoun “she” in v. 15 seems to refer to Eve who had the curse given in Genesis 3:16. Eve survived the multiplied pain and sorrow of childbearing. In spite of the curse in Genesis 3:16, women in general (now there is a shift to the plural “they” in v. 15), have the assurance that the curse will not put all women under heavy burden with the prospect of physical death in the process of conceiving and delivering children into this world. The curse pronounced in Genesis 3:16 should not create fear as long as the Christian women live in faith in Christ as the Savior, possess love, holiness and self-control. With faith, love, holiness and self-control, and modesty, women stand equally worthy, as the male members, in receiving the grace and loving kindness of God that would result to salvation.