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Follow-up questions on Junia?

Submitted: 2/2/2007
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Question: I have read in the Old Testament that a woman named Deborah was the Judge of Israel. I feel that this is a high office with God, to be a judge of God's people, even Barak would not go to war without her beside him. Is this true? Also, will you explain to me the verse in Galations about there is neither male or female in Christ Jesus? Also another question, How do we know which translation of the Bible to believe? I have always stuck the the KJV.

Answer: It is true that Deborah was a prophetess who judged the people of Israel and became a hero of the Israelites. Her story is recoded in Judges 4 and 5. It is also true that Barak was unwilling to go to battle unless Deborah went with him. The price he paid for this was that he did not receive any glory for defeating the enemies of God's people. This does not, however, lend any support one way for the other to the issues surrounding Junia/Junias.

Galatians 3:27-28 says, 'For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.' This passage is describing the equality among all who are saved, regardless of ethnicity, social status, or gender. We are all children of God by virtue of our new birth experience. The cross of Jesus Christ is indeed the great equalizer. This passage does not, however, address matters concerning church polity. The equality has to do with our position in Christ, not our labors in the church. Other passages deal with who is qualified to serve in the various ministries of the body. We must keep in mind the principle of 'unity with diversity.'

As to which version of the Bible is best, this is a much debated subject. The truth is, all translations have shortcomings simply because they are translations. Whenever a text of any kind is translated from one language to another, it is virtually impossible to get it exactly right. Some modern versions have very blatant errors due to doctrinal biases. Others are less conspicuous. Some shortcomings are due to the fact that there are minor discrepancies among the ancient manuscripts that are used for translation. Also, the meanings of words in the English language have changed over the years. We generally favor the New King James Version, but we acknowledge that it too is imperfect. We should not, however, be put off by this reality. The bootom line is, we can find the essential truths that we need to know to be saved in almost any version of the Bible. For a more detailed discussion on this subject, we recommend obtaining the book 'God's Infallible Word' by David K. Bernard.