Hey Cameron, I’m glad to hear things are moving along and the Lord is using you. Just be grateful that you have a paying job, there are many who don’t.
In reference to 1 Timothy 2-3, another very prickly passage(you sure know how to pick them!), the repetition does plays a pretty significant part. Once you determine the segment divisions of that particular section, things become a bit clearer.
Look for words that repeat, but pay attention to the kind of words that are repeating. What I mean to say is that, for example, if the most repetitive words are black, white, grey, blue – obviously you would find that significant. However, if the most repetitive words were turkey, gravy, potatoes, carrots, then not only would that be significant but you might catch on to the authors train of thought quite early(so much so, you would be looking for another word like ‘cranberriy’ or ‘pie’). The point is, that the repetition will help you to understand the content and subsequently help you to contextualize the material .
Once you can contextualize the section everything kinda falls into place. You may even discover that the ambiguity of the passage disappears. Things seems to make complete sense when you understand how the author’s mind works. It’s always a trip to see how Paul’s mind worked. In 1 & 2 Timothy Paul went to great lengths to clearly communicate what the Holy Spirit was saying. Just be willing to go to great lengths to understand the point. It is not as uncertain as you may have thought at first.
So if you have 5 paragraphs that individually speak of black in the first, white in the 2nd, grey in paragraph 3, & blue in the fourth one – you’d conclude the paragraphs are about colors, not leadership. Well what happens when the 5th paragraph tells you that everything in the 1st 4 paragraphs is about color? You can be pretty sure what the 5 paragraphs are about. 1 Timothy 2-3 is a generalization, Yes. Therefore since you understand that it is about roles in the church, you therefore conclude that Men, Women, Bishops, and Deacons are all roles in the church. And this is where you should source your conclusions concerning a woman’s role in ministry. However 99% of people read into this text what isn’t there, so be careful.
Be good, Leep