“I see your point…”
My pastor has said many times that where the Bible is clear, we are to be clear, and where the Bible is ambiguous, we are to be ambiguous, and where the Bible is silent, we are to be silent. Would you agree or disagree with these statements? I try to not take places where the Bible is silent at most or ambiguous at the least, which is the case with these OT stories, and turn them into places from which I draw doctrine. An important principle of Biblical interpretation is to interpret the unclear portions of Scripture with the clear portions of Scripture. You’re right that these passages make no commentary on whether or not these women having leadership was good or bad. Although in the case of Deborah and Barak she does ask him to take leadership and he shirks it, to his own shame. I think that the lack of commentary argument is an argument from silence, which is to say, not a terribly convincing argument. The vast majority of Biblical accounts show men in leadership. It is the norm for men to be in leadership. For instance, women are not allowed to be priests. Additionally, Isaiah 3 talks about the curse of having women and children rule over a people (specifically Judah in this case). I grant that in the past God has used women to lead His people in very extraordinary circumstances but I don’t think that we should turn around and say that now women can lead all the time.
‘Quite frankly, I’m not sure…”
Your argument regarding the relative education of women is all well and good, except that it ignores the actual text of 1 Timothy 2:9–15:
9 Likewise, I want women to adorn themselves with proper clothing, modestly and discreetly, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly garments, 10 but rather by means of good works, as is proper for women making a claim to godliness. 11 A woman must quietly receive instruction with entire submissiveness. 12 But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet. 13 For it was Adam who was first created, and then Eve. 14 And it was not Adam who was deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression. 15 But women will be preserved through the bearing of children if they continue in faith and love and sanctity with self-restraint.” (NASB)
The Apostle Paul doesn’t say “Oh and by the way, if the women are educated enough, then this command doesn’t apply any more.” Instead he says, “For it was Adam who was first created, and then Eve. And it was not Adam who was deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression.” His argument is founded all the way back to the creation of man in Genesis. Because Adam was created before Eve, “a woman is not to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet.” Therefore even in the perfect state of the Garden of Eden, before the Fall, Adam had authority over Eve and she was submissive to him. If this was the case before mankind was corrupted by sin, it was clearly the original intent and design of God to have man and woman relate to each other in this way. While the Fall has corrupted this relationship, it still remains that man has authority over woman because of how God created.