Was Junia a male or female?

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by Gunther, Jul 24, 2003.

  1. Gunther

    Gunther
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2003
    Messages:
    616
    Likes Received:
    0
    This has been brought up here recently. Junia is spoken of in Romans 16:7 as an "apostle".

    Just a couple of things here:

    1. "Apostle" simply means "sent one". A missionary could be called an "apostle" by strict definition. It does not have to be an office.

    2. The Lord hand picked twelve "apostles" who had certain authority. There are only twelve of these. They are all now dead.

    Now, on what grounds would you say that Junia is a man or woman?
     
  2. Trotter

    Trotter
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/6412.jpg>

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2003
    Messages:
    4,815
    Likes Received:
    0
    From Robertson's Word Pictures , via e-sword :

    "Among the apostles (en tois apostolois). Naturally this means that they are counted among the apostles in the general sense true of Barnabas, James, the brother of Christ, Silas, and others. But it can mean simply that they were famous in the circle of the apostles in the technical sense. "

    Junia can be either a masculine or feminine name.

    In Christ,
    Trotter
     
  3. dianetavegia

    dianetavegia
    Expand Collapse
    Guest

    Some Bible scholars think this was a relative of Paul's. However, I think it's a man because he mentions 'fellow countrymen' and 'fellow prisoner'.

     
  4. Caretaker

    Caretaker
    Expand Collapse
    <img src= /drew.gif>

    Joined:
    May 20, 2002
    Messages:
    634
    Likes Received:
    0
    7: Salute Andronicus and Junia, my kinsmen, and my fellowprisoners, who are of note among the apostles, who also were in Christ before me.

    It could as easily be read, "who are well known to the apostles", which would be more accurate as there are a fixed number of apostles.

    A servant of Christ,
    Drew
     
  5. ScottEmerson

    ScottEmerson
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2002
    Messages:
    3,417
    Likes Received:
    0
    Junia cannot be a masculine name. There is no evidence anywhere in Greek or Latin of a male named Junia. However, Junia is found quite a few times as a woman's name. The earliest of church fathers also agreed.
     
  6. timothy 1769

    timothy 1769
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2002
    Messages:
    1,323
    Likes Received:
    0
    i agree, that's exactly how i read it. in fact, i had to go back and read it again to get a hint of any other meaning.
     
  7. Matt Black

    Matt Black
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2003
    Messages:
    9,141
    Likes Received:
    0
    The eastern Orthodox Church has celebrated the feast of St Junias and regarded her as being not only female but also an 'honorary apostle', from fairly early on in church history.
    NB not that I am in any way saying that as Baptists we need to follow or be bound by the Orthodox; I merely refer to it as evidence of how Christians much closer in time to the NT interpreted this passage.

    Yours in Christ

    Matt
     
  8. Artimaeus

    Artimaeus
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2002
    Messages:
    3,133
    Likes Received:
    0
    Was Junia a male or female? Yes. :cool:

    Ok, I don't know. [​IMG]
     
  9. ScottEmerson

    ScottEmerson
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2002
    Messages:
    3,417
    Likes Received:
    0
    There were more than 12 apostles. Read I Corinthians 15:5-7. Apostles are separate from the disciples.
     
  10. ScottEmerson

    ScottEmerson
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2002
    Messages:
    3,417
    Likes Received:
    0
    Interestingly enough, not a single church father, commentary or any other work of literature before 1400 calls Junia a male. That in and of itself should say something.
     
  11. Gunther

    Gunther
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2003
    Messages:
    616
    Likes Received:
    0
    That you get your theology from silent history and not the Scripture? Just kidding.
     
  12. ScottEmerson

    ScottEmerson
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2002
    Messages:
    3,417
    Likes Received:
    0
    Oh, they weren't silent about it. Many of them mentioned that Junia was a woman, including Chrysostom, Jerome, Origen, Hatto, Theophylact, and Peter Abelard. Even the first recorded person to call Junia a man, Aegidius, admitted that he merely preferred that Junia be a man.

    Let me also add that the date that the first recorded date of Junia being considered a woman wasn't 1400 as I said eariler - but between 1300 and 1316, the dates of Aegidus' writings. I wanted to clarify (I was one off on my centuries!)
     
  13. Gunther

    Gunther
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2003
    Messages:
    616
    Likes Received:
    0
    Okay, I let this slide way too long. First, I am putting forth some research done by a group of people. I will wrap up with my own thoughts on the matter:

    "Was Junias a woman?"

    "We cannot know. The evidence is indecisive. We did a complete search of all the Greek writings from Homer (Ninth Cen. B.C.) into the fifth century A.D. available now on computer through the Thesaurus Linguae Graecae, which contains 2,889 authors and 8,203 works. We asked the computer for all forms of Iounia - so that we would pick up all the possible cases. (We did not search for the possible first declension masculine genititve Iouniou, which morphologically could come from a masculine Iounias, because there is no way to tell if Iouniou might come from the man's name Iounios; so that all these genitive forms would be useless in establishing a masculine Iounias.)

    The results of our computer search is this: Besides the one instance in Romans 16:7 there were three others.

    (1) Plutarch (ca. A.D. 50- ca. 120), in his 'Life of Marcus Brutus', wrote about the tension between Brutus and Cassius, "...though there were connected in their families, cassius having married Junia, the sister of Brutus (Iounia gar adelphe Broutou sunoikei Kassios)."

    (2) Epiphanius (A.D. 315-403), the bishop of Salamis in Cyprus, wrote an Index of Disciples, in which he includes this line: "Iounias, of whom Paul makes mention, became bishop of Apameia of Syria." In Greek, the phrase 'of whom' is a masculine relative pronoun (hou) and shows that Epiphanius thought Iounias was a man.

    (3) John Chrysostom (A.D. 347-407), in preaching on Romans 16:7, said in reference to Junias, "Oh! how great is the devotion of this woman, that she should be even counted worthy of the appellation of apostle!"

    What we may learn from these three uses is that Junias was used as a woman's name in the time around the New Testament (Plutarch). The Church Fathers were evidently divided as to whether Paul was using Junias that way, Epiphanius assuming it is masculine, Chrysostom assuming it is feminine. Perhaps somewhat more weight may be given to the statement by Epiphanus, since he appears to know more specific information about Junias (that he became a bishop of Apameia), while Chrysostom gives no more information than what he could deduce from Romans 16:7."

    Okay, given the above information, it is undecided between the early fathers as to the exact identity. Origen had a Latin commentary and in this passage, uses the masculine form of the word for Junia. He apparently thought Junia was a male.

    At any rate, to say with dogmaticism that Junia is female is foolish. It is not settled among the fathers and actually evidence would lead away from Junia being a woman.

    What I find so surprising (and probably I shouldn't), is that some are trying to not only say Junia was a woman, but that he was an Apostle (which the text does not say).
     
  14. dianetavegia

    dianetavegia
    Expand Collapse
    Guest

    Gunther, may I again quote my husband who says "You see what you WANT to see and you hear what you WANT to hear."

    These so called 'baptists' want so badly to take away from God's word concerning a woman's place in HIS plan that they will fight, misuse and excuse in an effort to validate their agenda.

    God said a woman was not to preach, teach, usurp a man and that's all I need to hear.

    Diane
     
  15. ScottEmerson

    ScottEmerson
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2002
    Messages:
    3,417
    Likes Received:
    0
    To get a good glimpse of what the church fathers believed, you must also take into account those who wrote in Latin.

    Epiphanus was notorious for being anti-female. He wrote: "In very truth, women are a feeble race, untrustworthy and of mediocre intelligence. Panarion 79" Modern scholars have discounted Epiphanus as a reliable source concerning women.

    Glad to see that he got it right!

    Not at all. Just do a search on Epiphanus and women and you'll see his extreme bias against them.

    Here's another quote:

    "JUNIAS (PERSON) [Gk Iounia]. The only woman who is called an “apostle” in the NT (Rom 16:7). She was born a Jew, and is closely associated to Andronicus. Her name was the Lat name of the gens Junia. Women were often called by the name of their gens without cognomen (similar examples are Mary [Rom 16:6] and Julia [Rom 16:15]). Two groups carried the name of the gens Junia: the noble members of the famous gens, and the freed(wo)men of the gens with their descendants. The second group outnumbered the first. The chances therefore are that the Christian Junia was a freed slave of the gens. Either way, she probably had Roman citizenship: slave masters with famous gens names like “Junius/ia” possessed Roman citizenship and in most cases passed it on to their slaves on the occasion of their emancipation; the freed slaves bequeathed the gens name and the citizenship to their freeborn children...the Church Fathers in late antiquity identified Andronicus’ partner in Rom 16:7 as a woman, as did minuscule 33 in the 9th century which records iounia with an acute accent. Only later medieval copyists of Rom 16:7 could not imagine a woman being an apostle and wrote the masculine name “Junias.” This latter name did not exist in antiquity; its explanation as a Greek abbreviation of the Latin name “Junianus” is unlikely." Lampe - Anchor Bible Commentary

    Also see: Lampe, “Roman Christians,” 223-224. Richard S. Cervin, “A Note Regarding the Name ‘Junia(s)’ in Romans 16:7,” New Testament Studies 40 (1994), 464-470, independently confirms this conclusion while explaining Roman customs concerning male and female names.

    Aha! There is an error here, or at least some lazy reporting. The "of whom" was an emendation made by Migne in his reprint of the works. In the mss themselves, we have the feminine Junia.

    There is one evidence that Junia was not a woman, and even this is from someone with a mighty big chip on his shoulder against women. The evidence is still there.

    The text indeed says that. A person must do some surprising exegetical gymnastics otherwise.

    The United Bible Societies Handbook Series, an acknowledged authority composed of a board of respected translators, first acknowledges that they are a male/female team, "Adronicus and Junias ... could easily have been husband and wife, or brother and sister." They acknowledge that some misunderstood the sentence, "to mean 'the apostles know them well,' but a far more acceptable interpretation would imply that these...were counted as apostles and were well known, for example, 'as apostles they are well known." United Bible Societies Handbook Series, (1961-1997) for Romans 16:7
     
  16. Gunther

    Gunther
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2003
    Messages:
    616
    Likes Received:
    0
    We can go on and on about this Scott. You are trying to poison the well for the father who said other than what you wanted it to say.

    I could just as easily discount your list of "scholars" because they are modern day feminists and want the text to say that.

    Further, the text does NOT say she was an apostle. It does say that she is noted among the apostles. Nice try.

    Finally, perhaps you can pull this over others, but Paul referred to different groups of people in different ways. He would sometimes refer to a pair of women, a man and woman, and a pair of men. I do not have the examples in front of me right now, but they do exist. I love how you pick only the one possible interpretation that will fit your take on this.

    You pick the most obscure meaning, then build on it. Classic.
     
  17. ScottEmerson

    ScottEmerson
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2002
    Messages:
    3,417
    Likes Received:
    0
    All the Fathers said that Junia was a woman. The one in question did not. In order to understand the anomoly, it helps to examine why that person may disagree. I showed you his stance on women. Considering his disdain for them, such a dissention makes perfect sense.

    Then do it. The evidence speaks for itself. Do you notice how I showed that your evidence about Origen was inadequate, due to the fact that Junia is indeed called a woman in Origen's manuscripts? Try to do that with the evidence that is presented.

    En implies selection within a group. Had Paul wanted to use "by" he would have used para or pros. Interestingly the verse also has en elsewhere when talking about "in Christ." Are you saying that the verse should read:

    "Salute Andronicus and Junia, my kinsmen, and my fellowprisoners, who are of note among the apostles, who also were among Christ before me." That just doesn't make sense. The only way to make sense of "en" is to understand that Andronicus and Junia were, indeed, apostles.

    I never disagreed with that. Here, though, he is clearly talking about a man and a woman.

    What is obscure about it? The fact that all of the early church fathers (save one) until 1300 said that Junia was, indeed, an apostle? The fact that modern Bible scholars and commentaries say that she was an apostle? What is obscure?
     

Share This Page

Loading...