Elliott v. Yoder on Fox matters!
- Scott Elliott has been involved in the discussio of the Marion Fox
matter, and more broadly the "women" issue. He's advised Fox's OneHeart
list that, since Gil Yoder has terminated their correspondence, he
deemed it appropriate to publish the correspondence.
I thought to copy some here for reference and discussion as well, if
there is interest. Links will be provided for full texts, and excerpts
according to my own judgment.
Here's the first:
I want to write to you to answer your latest post to OneHeart, hoping to
help you out of a dire situation.
Your support for the error that has caused brother Fox to be marked now
by numerous brethren will have the same result for you, if you do not
abandon this course and follow truth yourself.
You may be too close to the trees to see them, but you will be hurt
greatly if you do not recognize the error that Marion has been teaching
and avoid him as many of your friends are doing.
Brother, I have known the brethren at Piedmont now for many years, and
if they knew what Marion was teaching, I don't think they would support
him, and eventually I think they will come to that understanding. If
that point before you do, it could hurt you badly.
You might think this is an exaggeration, but Marion could not understand
a few months ago how this situation could hurt him, and since then he
has become undone. This will
happen to you too.
Marion (Fox) and Gary (Smith) teach that a woman cannot teach her
husband. Peter contradicts that, and many other passages of the Bible do
Those brethren are reading into the Bible things that are not there, and
the wise will avoid them to save themselves as well as those who hear
To go along with this false doctrine will cause you to lose your soul,
and will likely lead others away with you.
Do not abandon your friends, Scott. You are getting out on a limb, and
you need to climb back in to safety.
Finally, I ask you not to post this note to OneHeart. I didn't write
this for anyone but you and those whom I have Cced.
- Here is Scott Elliott's reply to Gil Yoder's missive (excerpts):
First, I apologize to XXXX and XXXX. I know you did not want to be
involved in this but since Gil involved you I will include you in this
Gil, I do not respond to threats of losing friends or even losing my
job. I do not want to lose either but the only thing I respond to is
sound Biblical reasoning as the Bible is my sole authority.
I submit to you two excerpts from two seperate articles. The first one
is from an article by Jack P. Lewis which can be found in the Spiritual
Sword and the second is from an article by Tom Bright which can be found
in Seek the Old Paths.
If you decide to respond to the article by Jack P. Lewis please only
respond to what I sent and not other issues involving brother Lewis as
we are dealing with doctrine here and not the character or other beliefs
of the person.
1. The following is from an article written by Jack P. Lewis which can
be found in the January 1996 issue of the Spiritual Sword entitled "A
Review of Feminist Theology." It can also be found at the following
2. The following is from an article written by Tom Bright can be found
in the May 1996 issue of Seek the Old Paths. It can also be found at the
I could add more but I will give you a chance to comment on these two
articles before I do so.
In His Service
- Gil Yoder's further response to Scott Elliott:
You have mistaken a warning for a threat. My post was not meant as a
threat at all, but just as a reminder that actions have consequences.
I would not want you to respond to threats or simply to the fact that
you might lose the
fellowship you might now have with brethren, but the scriptures provide
disfellowship and disassociation as an incentive to brethren to take
care in what they teach.
I want you to respond to sound biblical reasoning.
If everyone did that there would be no controversy.
Brother, I will respond to your post, but I see no response from you to
anything that I wrote in my post to you.
Do you accept that the scriptures teach that women should on some
occasion teach men, or not?
Many different brethren have given sound biblical reasoning to lead to
that conclusion, but some brethren are ignoring those arguments.
With regard to what Lewis wrote, I agree with most of it. I accept that
the ANER goes with "to teach" and "to exercise authority." The only real
disagreement that I have with his interpretation is the idea that ANER
is to be interpreted as an object of those infinitives. ANER is in the
genitive case. The genitive is not equivalent with the objective case in
closest Greek case to the English objective is the accusative case.
The most literal way to translate ANER in the genitive is "of man" or
"man's." Since the word modifies both "to teach" and "to exercise
authority" then you could read the passage "not to teach of man, nor to
exercise the authority of man," but "teach of man" is not very clear in
English, so translating it adverbially with "manly" or "in the manner of
man" gets at
the heart of what Paul is writing.
The passage isn't saying "not to teach man," but rather "not to teach
like a man."
Scott, there are just too many passage that have to be wrested that
teach that a woman sometimes has an obligation to teach a man to
interpret this passage as an absolute prohibition against it.
Recognizing that the passage is against a manly manner, rather than
against teaching men allows all of those passages that teach that woman
are authorized to teach men to be
interpretation without wresting them, or causing them to contradict the
With regard to Tom's instruction I see nothing in Tom's instruction that
I could disagree with. He merely pointed out that Col. 3:16 should not
interpreted as to allow a woman to teach without restriction in the
assembly, and that 1 Tim. 2:12 does not prohibit all teaching by women
even in an assembly.
I saw nothing that contradicts what I teach, and nothing in Tom's
instruction that gives way to what Marion and Gary teach on this
Marion and Gary teach that 1 Tim. 2:12 is an absolute prohibition
against a woman teaching, but that Col. 3:16 "trumps" that passage and
provides an exception. I wonder how they know that Col. 3:16 "trumps" 1
Tim.2:12. (Trump really is an argument that Col. 3:16 contradicts the
Why couldn't 1 Tim. 2:12 "trump" Col. 3:16. In other words Col. 3:16
teaches that we are to teach in singing in our worship, but 1 Tim. 2:12
"trumps" Col. 3:16 and means that Women cannot sing when men are
One "trump" is just as valid as the other, and there is no way of
knowing which "trump" is high.
The truth is passages of the Bible don't trump one another. They
harmonize with one another.
If 1 Tim. 2:12 teaches that women cannot teach, and Col. 3:16 (and other
passages) teach that women can teach, then these passages aren't
trumping one another; they are contradicting one another.
This is proof that Gary and Marion's interpretation of these passages
You concluded, I could add more but I will give you a chance to comment
on these two articles before I do so." Before you do, I think you should
respond to what I have written.
As far as Brant and Josh are concerned, I have reason to believe that
they are interested in your soul and how you teach the truth, so I doubt
that there is any need to apologize for including them in your replies.
If you are trying to equate my inclusion of their addresses in this
correspondence with Marion's inclusion of non-Christians and immature
Christians in our initial discussion of these things, I believe you
under estimate these
Again, I will appreciate it if you don't share these posts with others.
I am hoping to have this discussion with you, and not with Marion or
Gary with you as a proxy.
Scott, your support for Marion and Gary have slighted many of your
You should give that at least some consideration.
- Another reply to Gil Yoder by Scott Elliott. I think though Scott
posted the following later, the following is actually an earlier
response to Gil Yoder's first posted note. I guess Scott was not
particularly concerned with the sequence in which he posted the
correspondence. It could be a little confusing and extra effort may be
required to put the posts in order.
If I am going to enter into a discussion with you then I must first ask
you to provide me with an adequate definition of "manly teaching." Your
whole doctrine centers around this one phrase but I have yet to see it
What will I be marked for Gil?
Will I be marked for my teaching on the role
I have also known the brethren at Piedmont for many years and I think
you have misjudged them. I have discussed these matters with my elders
and they do not agree with what you teach. In fact one member at
attended the Elk City school of Preaching stated that what brothers Fox
and Williams teach is what they were taught at Elk City.
You are right Gil I do not know exactly what they did. I just assumed
they delivered a lecture at a lectureship. If it was a class then I
could change my statement to they taught a class.
Do you have reason to believe they sinned in anyway?
Maybe since brother Cosby is a part of this discussion he would be
better qualified to answer this one question since his wife was one of
Are you suggesting that there are several definitions for "manly
I think this should be explained as well. What is considered "manly
teaching" when a woman speaks to other women? What is considered "manly
teaching" when a woman speaks to Christian men? What is considered
teaching" when a woman speaks to non-Christian men?
What is considered "manly teaching" when a woman speaks to children?
Please provide book, chapter, and verse for where these commands are
Please give book, chapter, and verse that limits a woman from "teaching
a Bible class."
What is "over the line"?
What constitutes a sin?
I agree that a woman can impart knowledge to a man that would cause him
to obey the gospel as long as she did not violate 1 Timothy 2:12 in
I believe that all brethren have an obligation to convert the lost.
When I teach this passage I always teach it as the husbands "may without
a word be won." Obviously the husbands cannot be won without the word. I
have no problem with 1 Peter 3. I think Peter gives istructions here to
how a Christian woman is to convert her non-Christian husband. She is to
be an example to him and convert him by her "manner of life."
I disagree with your interpretation of 1 Peter 3. I do not believe Peter
"shows two ways that the wives may teach their husbands." The phrase "if
any obey not the word" is describing the husband. Peter informs us here
that if their husband is not a Christian then they may be won without a
I do believe that a Christian woman can speak to her non-Christian
husband about spiritual matters and in some instances she is obligated
to do so. I just do not find that teaching here.
What do you mean by teach? Have you asked them what a woman can and
cannot do with her husband? I know they believe that a woman can impart
knowledge to her husband. I remind you that brother Tom Bright wrote the
following in his article for Seek the Old Paths.
I do not believe they are "reading into the Bible things that are not
there." I believe they are teaching exactly what the Bible teaches that
woman is not to teach nor exercise authority over a man.
What I do not read in my Bible is that a woman is not to teach in a
"manly manner." Is there a
credible translation that translates this passage in this way?
I will never abandon my friends but first and foremost I must stand for
- Another reply from Gil Yoder to Scott Elliott:
I appreciate that you have taken the time to respond, and especially the
attitude that you have taken in your last note. Also I hope that you
will keep your heart opened to the very real possibility that the course
you have chosen is the wrong course.
With regard to the definition of "manly teaching," I think that I have
already indicated what that means in several ways, but I will try again.
FWIW I have used this explanation now in several venues, and most who
have heard it have had no difficulty understanding what I mean. It is
only a few, such as yourself that for some reason don't seem to
understand. It makes me wonder why that is the case.
The word "manly" is simply the adverbial form of the word "man." It
means "like a man." Or as Adam Clarke wrote in a quote that has been
appealed to by someone on OneHeart (I forget if this was by you or
someone else), that
which "belongs to man." It is a way to make sense of the literal "of
man" which is inherent in the genitive of ANER, much as "of beauty" and
"beautiful" have basically the same meaning, and as "of faith" and
"faithful" are basically the same (as per Dana and Mantey).
So "manly teaching" means teaching in a way that "belongs to man," or
"in the manner of men," or with the air of a man. A woman is to teach in
a womanly way, not a manly way. Do you not agree? To teach in a womanly
to teach with a submissive and meek spirit. If a woman gets up and puts
on the air of a man, she is sinning just as surely as a man who gets up
and puts on the air of a woman.
In the context of teaching it is possible for a woman to teach a man
without stepping over the line into masculine behavior, but the
scriptures are clear that woman must be careful in this matter.
However, teaching a Bible class of men or giving a presentation before
the church, or preaching are all activities that "belong to man," so it
is not possible for a woman to do any
of these things in a womanly way.
They are all proscribed by Paul's instruction. This is the case no
matter how much a woman may feign a womanly air. The very acts
themselves are not womanly and no amount of pretending can change that.
You ask, "What will I be marked for Gil? Will I be marked for my
teaching on the role of women?"
Yes, that is possible, but it is also possible that
you could be marked for bidding godspeed to those who are in error and
have been disfellowshipped by godly men.
Scott, at least three brethren withdrew from the school that Marion
directs because of the error that he teaches.
All three of these brethren love Marion deeply, but because they could
not agree with his extreme views, they left the school.
When you took one of their places, you slapped them in their faces. You
have given little consideration that these men left the school because
of a conviction that they have regarding the seriousness of Marion's
At the very least, even if you did not understand all of their
reasoning, the wise course would
have been to hold back until you have a better understanding of the
Scott, the Piedmont church helped to sponsor my mission work in Moab,
Utah around the time you were born.
I know those brethren believe that the Great Commission is a commission
we are commanded to obey, and that they do not
agree with Marion and Gary that women cannot teach men.
Your grandfather, brother Bob Patterson, was one of my supporters back
then, and I count him as a friend. I have not visited with him in many
years, but I know him to be one who loves the truth.
I wonder, Scott, if the Piedmont church knows what Marion and Gary have
been teaching on the subject. The fact that you discussed the matter
with them does not give me confidence that they have heard both sides. I
think if they
were to hear the whole story, their opinions would not be the same as
I am not suggesting that there are several meanings for "manly
teaching." But I am suggesting that an apparent demeanor in one
situation would not necessarily be a true demeanor in another.
A woman must always teach in a womanly way. If she starts to behave like
a man, even when teaching men, she is in sin. Men are not
charged with teaching in a submissive spirit, but women are.
If a woman seeks a leadership role over men, such as is inherent in a
Bible class or worship service when teaching occurs, she is not behaving
in a submissive spirit.
But when a woman teaches a man in other ways, leadership is not
necessarily inherent in the act. She could step over the line and
domineer, and she would be in sin, that is not necessarily the case.
When a woman speaks in a Bible class, it is possible for her to speak in
a submissive way, and it is possible for her to speak in a domineering
The former is proper; the latter is not. In both cases the woman might
teach something by her comment. Such teaching is not condemn in and of
itself, unless the teaching is with a manly spirit.
A woman is not permitted the same latitude of teaching that man has.
While I think in most cases even a man who speaks in a Bible class
should speak meekly, there have been times that I have felt compelled to
domineer a class
even from the pew, such as when a teacher begins to teach serious error.
I would not permit my wife to speak with the same latitude that I permit
myself, but neither do I prohibit my wife from speaking in a meek way,
even if such involves teaching men. My wife in fact has been able to
teach me many things, and I suspect that if you are wise, you would
allow your wife to teach you too.
Scott, I cannot believe that you think that a woman can say nothing that
might teach her husband what to do to obey the gospel. That is an
extreme position and why it is such a danger to the church.
Scott, don't be foolish. I have simply reported what they teach, and you
know they teach this. Gary was asked if a woman can evangelize a man. He
Marion and repeatedly said that a woman cannot teach (didasko) a man.
That is a false statement, and I don't even have to know what teach
means to say it.
However, I know what teach means, and these men don't. That is why they
make false statements.
I know they say this too (i.e., a woman can impart knowledge to her
husband). But they say this is not teaching.
That is false, and needs to be opposed. It cause division in the church
and is wrecking our
You should oppose it too.
Marion Fox gave this translation of the passage in a private letter to
Ron Cosby: "But I permit not woman to teach, nor in any other way to
execute authority of man, but to continually be in a state of
Marion recognized that the genitive ANER means "of man" and not "over
man." If as
you have already admitted agreement to the term ANER goes with both
teaching and exercising authority, then Paul was teaching that a woman
could not do the teaching of men. I accept that as a valid translation
of the passage.
You have already done so, Scott (i.e., abandoned friends).
Don't kid yourself about this. I would like
to you recognize the value of the friendships you have threatened, and
work to correct the damage. You can stand for the truth and keep your
friends, and this is what I would pray for.
- Another response to Gil Yoder from Scott Elliott:
Dear Brother Yoder,
I am sorry that it has taken me so long to respond. The church here in
Piedmont is my first priority and sometimes I get busy with work I must
do for the church. One of the saddest things in this whole mess is that
so much time has been wasted on attacking each other that could have
been spent spreading the gospel.
I appreciate your willingness to continue this
discussion with me. I have received several e-mails from others who were
included in this discussion.
At this time, I only plan on answering e-mails
from you, Gil.
Gil, I am not a Greek scholar. I was wondering if there was any other
occassion in the Bible when a genitive noun is used as an adverb? A
book, chapter, verse would be great.
I do agree it would be a sin for a woman to act manly and for a man to
Gil, suppose I were to stand a woman up in front of an audience of all
women, blindfold her and instruct her to begin teaching in a womanly
If I begin to slowly take all the women out and replace them with men,
are you telling me she would go from "womanly teaching" (which is not a
sin) to "manly teaching" (which is a sin) without her changing a single
I find it hard to believe that a woman could go from "womanly teaching"
to "manly teaching" without changing anything she does.
Is this not what you advocate?
Gil, you also state, "To teach in a womanly way is to teach with a
submissive and meek spirit."
Does this mean if a man was submissive and
meek he would be teaching in a womanly way (which would be a sin)? Is a
man not supposed to be meek when he teaches? Is a man not supposed to be
submissive to certain people (such as Christ and his eldership) when he
Prove with a BCV that a woman is not to preach, teach a Bible class
before men, or give a presentation. You taught in your presentation on 1
Timothy that this passage not only applies to spiritual matters but
secular matters as well.
You gave two examples one of a woman college professor and another of a
woman politician. Would it be wrong for a woman college professor to
stand up in a mixed audience and give a presentation?
Are the acts not womanly because you say so or because you can prove it
by the Bible?
Gil, there are thousands of old ladies across this country who have set
in Baptist churches and had the doctrines of once saved always saved and
faith only explained to them and afterwards they have probably come up
"pastor" and stated that he made that subject clearer than it has ever
been to them.
Am I supposed to accept those false doctrines simply because thousands
of old ladies find it to be very clear?
I remind you again, Gil, I only respond to sound Biblical reasoning and
the above paragraph is far from that.
Are you telling me that Deut. 22:5 is binding on us today? Is a woman
allowed to wear a pants suit to worship or the office?
I see that you are making the actual teaching the fellowship issue. Do
you agree with the 2/3 of the Dyersburg elders that those who teach the
great commission is not binding today should be marked and withdrawn
from as well.
Will you be consistent and withdraw from everyone who holds these
positions and everyone who is on the staff or attends the school?
Gil, to my knowledge only two brethren withdrew from the school and one
of those brethren believes in the Bales doctrine (that there are two
laws in the NT). He also believes in children church and supports the
Chronicle and Herald of Truth. You can go to the churches website where
he preaches and find links to these two works. You have stood behind
this man in the past and praised him for his actions. Are you willing to
stand behind these things he advocates and supports as well?
The other teacher holds the same view as Marion on the great commission.
2/3 of the elders at Dyersburg have stated publicly that this is a
fellowship issue. Are you willing to stand behind those elders and
withdraw from everyone who holds this view?
Gil, you stated, "When you took one of their places, you slapped them in
their faces." I was asked to be a teacher at the school long before
these two men resigned. They both were handed schedules that had my name
and the classes I was going to teach before they resigned. I did not
take one of their places.
Are you accussing me of lyng to my own eldership about these matters?
I have told them exactly what Marion and Gary teach and exactly what you
When I tell people about your teaching on 1 Timothy 2:12 and "manly
teaching" most reply they have never heard that before. It was a new
teaching to me as well. I had never heard it until I began to read your
comments on Let Us Reason.
Do you think it is possible for a woman to go from womanly teaching to
manly teaching without changing her behavior?
Are you suggesting that it would be wrong for a man to be submissive
when teaching a class?
I, nor Marion have ever suggested that a woman cannot comment in a Bible
class. In fact I have set in Bible classes that Marion has taught where
women have made comments, read passages from the Bible, and asked
I have never restricted my wife from making comments in Bible class or
in my presence. Do I believe she could sin in doing so? Absolutely, and
I think you feel the same way, but so far my wife has not crossed the
line and I don't believe she will.
You state that the Bible teaches by implication. Can people teach by
implication as well? If I were to teach something that implied false
doctrine would this be wrong?
Gil, my answer is not meaningless. I still stand behind my statemant
that " a woman can impart knowledge to a man that would cause him to
obey the gospel as long as she did not violate 1 Timothy 2:12 in doing
Gil, are you going to withdraw from me for refusing to use your
terminology? I prefer to use Bible terminology. Paul states, "I permit
not a woman to teach, nor to have dominion over a man."
Brother Tom Bright stated the following, "In 1 Timothy 2:12, Paul wrote
'But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man,
but to be in silence.' Here a woman is forbidden to "teach" (Gk.
didasko) a man." I agree with this statement by brother Tom Bright.
Gil, you say a woman can didasko a man.
Please give me a BCV that commands a woman to didasko a man. Gil, I can
show you in the Bible where states a woman cannot didasko a man; can you
show me where a woman can didasko a man?
Again Gil, I prefer Bible terminology. I can show you where Paul says a
woman is not to teach a man (1 Tim. 2:12). I can also show you where a
woman is allowed to expound to a man (Acts 18:26). You appeal to an
English dictionary as your authority and when I define teach I appeal to
Thayers. Are you suggesting that an English dictionary should be our
we define Bible terms?
Gil, can the same Greek word have different meanings throughout the NT?
Aren't we supposed to define the Greek word by its context when it has
more than one definition?
Gil, sometimes Greek words have more than one definition just as English
words have more than one definition. We must determine the definition by
the context. Again, I would ask you to provide BCV where a woman is
commanded to didasko a man. I can provide BCV where Paul informs us that
a woman is not to didasko a man.
Gil, where in this passage does it say a woman is to teach her husband?
Gil, you stated, "Scott, I cannot believe that you think that a woman
can say nothing that might teach her husband what to do to obey the
gospel. That is an extreme position and why it is such a danger to the
This is a gross misrepresentation of what I believe. If you will go back
to my original e-mail you will see that I made this statement when
commenting on this verse " I do believe that a Christian woman can speak
non-Christian husband about spiritual matters and in some instances she
is obligated to do so. I just do not find that teaching here." Gil, how
could you misunderstand this statement and assume that I believe a woman
even speak to her husband?
Gil, do you believe this statement by Tom Bright is a false statement?
"Here a woman is forbidden to "teach" (Gk. didasko) a man."
Above you stated, "Marion and repeatedly said that a woman cannot teach
(didasko) a man.
That is a false statement, and I don't even have to know what teach
means to say it."
Why would this be a false statement when Marion said it but not when Tom
Bright said it?
They are identical statements.
Gil, Marion and others say a woman cannot teach but she can impart
knowledge. You say that imparting knowledge is teaching. By your
definition, Marion and others believe it is OK for a woman to teach. Are
you going to withdraw from people because they refuse to use your
Gil, you did not answer my question. Is there a reliable translation
that translates 1 Timothy 2:12 they way you translate it? Is there any
reliable translation that uses the phrase "manly manner."
You quote Marion's translation but his translation does not use "man" as
Gil, I have not abandoned my friends. I have believed what I believe now
for several months and they have known this. I have expressed my beliefs
to them and they have stated that they will stick by me. I have not
beliefs. I have not abandoned my friends. The question is, "Will my
friends keep their word and stick by me?"
In His Service
- The following appears to be the present conclusion of the Elliott v.
From: "Scott Elliott"
Date: Thu Sep 8, 2005
Subject: Correspondence between Gil Yoder and Scott Elliott
I did not receive a response from Gil so I e-mailed him asking if he
planned on responding and continuing our correspondence.
He responded with a question for me to answer. I answered that question
and then I received this e-mail from Gil.
> I agree that there was no binding############################
> obligation for you not to share the
> e-mail with others. Neither is there
> any binding obligation for me to
> engage you further.
> I don't believe that I wish to carry
> on this discussion.
I guess that pretty much explains why Scott eventually chose to publish
the correspondence, such as he has.
It does help us to get additional insight into what is going on; though
there still appears to be a lot going on that is not getting around.