We women may wonder, in the midst of an often male-dominated world, what God’s own opinion of us is, since he created us last! Just what does God’s Word say about us?
Researching this topic, I found that we indeed were important to the God of the Universe, and just how much he has trusted us with. In Luke 12:48, Jesus spoke about being a faithful servant, and said, “For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall much be required.” Wow. I know of no other calling so worthy, or requiring the most commitment, as the rearing of children. God made us the keepers and cornerstone of the home. Think of it. Every politician, dictator, statesman, hero, Pulitzer-prize winner or rocket scientist – was born of a woman! We alone were entrusted with a womb. We usually are the first one a child trusts, bonds with, and learns from. What we do with that power, and what values we instill in them, to a great extent determines what kind of people walk this earth. That’s humbling.
We also have the ability to use that power God gave us to influence men for good or evil. In the Bible’s 372 passages that speak of ‘woman’, I found descriptions from: beautiful, virtuous, tender, wise, and kindhearted, to wayward, adulterous, and unruly. Proverbs 31:30 states, “Charm is deceptive and beauty is fleeting, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.” This chapter also exalts the Virtuous Woman, as one who speaks with wisdom and kindness.
In John chapter 4, Jesus did something unheard of in his day, he spoke to a Samaritan woman! I just love that Jesus was a revolutionary! Jesus defied cultural taboos when he initiated that conversation at the well. He showed that women were just as important to him by giving only her, (not the men of the town), the news that He was the Messiah.
Luke chapter 7 tells us the beautiful story of a sinful woman who humbled herself and washed Jesus’ feet with perfume and her tears, then dried them with her hair. Her worshipful act was praised by Jesus, and her sins were forgiven, which offended the Pharisees who criticized her.
The woman taken in adultery is another example of Christ’s great love. (John chapter 8) The Pharisees thought they had Jesus in a corner when they demanded He condemn her to be stoned. (Note that they never brought the man). After all, Moses’ law stated they were within their rights. Jesus then protected her, astounding them all, when He told them, “He who is without sin, cast the first stone at her.” He, who is God, was the only one who had that right, yet He showed her such love and refused to condemn her!
If you read the Easter story, you will note who Jesus first appeared to after His Resurrection. You guessed it, a woman. In every story, it was Christ’s love and tenderness that was apparent, when he honored a woman in some way. I could find no place in the scriptures where Christ condemned or debased a woman. God could have sent His Son, Jesus, to earth fully grown. But God saw fit to have Christ come through a simple peasant girl named Mary. A woman brought forth God’s most precious gift to mankind!
Jesus’ friends included Mary Magdalene, and the sisters, Mary and Martha, along with their brother Lazarus. It was for their sorrow at Lazarus’ death, that Jesus wept, and raised Lazarus to live again to glorify himself, and prove his deity.
Passages written by the Apostle Paul tend to make us think he was a woman-hater. However, the background shows he was writing to the church in Corinth to correct problems which had arisen there. He was correct in his line of authority however, that God is the head of the man, and man being the head of the woman. We women tend to chafe at that sometimes, but how a man misuses his authority over us sometimes must hurt the heart of God.
God created the institution of marriage, and commanded the man to love his wife. The Lord even used the example of this Holy union when he describes the church as His bride. The Song of Solomon is one such book written to glorify the Bride. Revelation 19:7 rejoices over the coming wedding of the Lamb of God, to his bride, the church.
I remember when I went on a Mexican missions trip in 2002. At that time I was given a clear picture of God’s wonderful love for us. He showed me a groom, waiting in the bridal chamber for his bride. However, instead of going in to him, she blew him a kiss and rushed by, saying, “See you later honey, I’m going shopping!” His eyes only looked sad and wounded, but not condemning. I was shocked by this absurd vision, and realized, after asking the Lord what it meant, that it was me. He showed me that even though I was there in a foreign country to serve Him, what really mattered was my relationship with Him, and what He wanted was an intimacy with us, his bride. Wow. I was so busy being like Martha in the New Testament, too busy serving to spend time soaking in His presence, like her sister Mary. It made me realize that He only really wants our love, first and foremost.
You see, we women were not an after-thought at all. But the icing on the cake. The piece of the puzzle that was missing. When God created woman, he showed Adam what love was. I like what someone once wrote: “God created woman, not from man’s head to be above him, nor from his feet to be walked upon, but from his side to be equal, and near his heart to be loved.”
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