The Sarcasm of the Apostle Paul – 1 Corinthians 14:34-40

The Sarcasm of the Apostle Paul

1 Corinthians 14:34-40 New International Version (NIV)

34 Women[a] should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak,but must be in submission, as the law says. 35 If they want to inquire about something, they should ask their own husbands at home; for it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church.[b]

36 Or did the word of God originate with you? Or are you the only people it has reached? 37 If anyone thinks they are a prophet or otherwise gifted by the Spirit, let them acknowledge that what I am writing to you is the Lord’s command. 38 But if anyone ignores this, they will themselves be ignored.[c]

39 Therefore, my brothers and sisters, be eager to prophesy, and do not forbid speaking in tongues. 40 But everything should be done in a fitting and orderly way.

How interesting!!!

What if 1 Corinthians 14:34-40 is read as if Paul is answering a question sarcastically?

To me this reads best as Paul sarcastic answer to a letter or previous conversation about women staying silent in churches.

Why else then would he continue on so forcefully addressing, “brothers and sisters” in the proceeding paragraphs?


I have to thank William Paul Young for his interpretation of this in his book Crossroads.