How do we live as godly women of courage, yet in submission? How do we glorify God through the only life we have been given?
It is my hope that these devotionals will be an answer to your heart’s cry. It is my passion that you would get to know these many women that God praises through His timeless Word. It is my goal that you would be able to lay aside manmade tradition, not for yet another opinion, but for the truth, revealed to you from the Word of God.
The women that receive praise are very, very distinct. In reading through, I pray God may smile upon you and invite you to look at things from His perspective. You will not find conclusions and principles you can copy and paste. Rather, in de Truth presented, something will start to sink from information coming in to the Teacher revealing His truth and making it a part of us. From there, it will eventually align our way of seeing things with His. Our way of seeing ourselves with Him.
Living a Christlike life can be confusing if you are a woman or girl! We want to look like Jesus, but he was a man. So should we just look at the (flawed) women in the Bible instead? I mean, Rebecca was an example in how to trust God, even leaving everything familiar behind. Yet I wouldn’t follow her example blindly when it comes to how she deceived her husband on his deathbed.
On top of that, scriptures like “women have to be silent in the Church” and passages on submission leave us a bit puzzled.
Are we to willingly take an inferior role? And if yes, how do we distinguish submission from enabling behavior? Don’t they both sound like “doormat”- language?
I believe Christ never meant for us to drag around these uncertainties. Many of them were spoken into us through culture and years of (brokenness in) Church history.
Jesus saw these questions coming, oftentimes answering with humor, added to His ever present wisdom. Let’s take a look at what kind of woman was praised in the Old Covenant. Let’s look at some of the encounters Jesus had with women in the New Covenant, and carry home their lessons for us today.
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Deborah and Jael
In Judges, we read a puzzling story. There is no king yet, and no prophet- leader like Moses or Joshua. It is a confusing time, best described as “and everyone did as they saw fit” – most of the time a terrible idea…..
The Proverbs 31 woman
In Proverbs 31:10-31, we read about a nameless woman, who represents the wife a man should be looking for. She is amazing in the way she grabs hold of life, and makes the most of it. Again, in the end, she carries the praise. Again, this is God’s way of revealing His values and priorities. We read about her today because God decided centuries ago that this woman carried a rolemodel function we need today.
The story of Ruth starts with Naomi and her husband Elimelech moving out from Israel to Moab to bridge a famine. They have two sons, who both marry Moabite women. Both of these families remain childless. The family tree looks like this:
|Elimelech & Naomi|
|Mahlon & Ruth||Kiljon & Orpa|
However, the story quickly turns sour as the men die early. When the famine is over in Israel, our family tree moving back to Israel, looks like this:
*Orpa is alive, but goes back to her Moabite family.
Though Naomi plays an impotant role, the book is named after Ruth, a woman who is praised and a role model for us today.
Starting chapter 2 in the book of Esther, we see an amazing story unfold. Against all odds, God comes through for His people every time. The plot has every enemy plan exposed, and Esther and her father-in-law Mordecai in their place of authority.
But let’s zoom in a little on this woman Esther. There are some things we know because of her.
The woman in Song of Solomon
The song of Solomon could be described as a wisdom musical, teaching us an important lesson.
There are two main ways to understand the story of Song of Solomon. The first is that a young girl falls in love with what she believes to be a shepherd. When her lover comes to pick her up for the marriage celebration, it turns out he was actually a king (King Solomon). Shepherd lover returning as King makes a strong theological point.
We all know the Mary/Martha passage. Sunday School or women’s retreat, we’ve heard it before. But seldomly do we hear it in context of what it meant for the Ancient Near Eastern Jew. And that just happens to change the entire clue of the story!
Firstly, we know that the gospels were called evangelion. A word that existed in that culture: evangelion was “good news”. But in the context of that time, it was a very specific good news. Whenever there was a new king, he would send out a herald to the different regions to proclaim His “good news”, that he is indeed the new king.
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