Category Archives: Bible Women

Bible Women: Rahab (the harlot)

This study is taken from the book of Joshua, Chapters 2 and 6. Rahab was a woman who demonstrated great faith, to the salvation of herself and her family. In Joshua 2:1-2, we have Joshua sending two spies into the walled city of Jericho, “to spy view the land, even Jericho” and they “came into an harlot’s house, named Rahab, and lodged there”.

Someone must have seen the men come into the city and enter Rahab’s house, and they knew they were of the “children of Israel” and that they had come to search out all the country. V2 “and it was told the king of Jericho, saying, Behold there came men in hither tonight out of the children of Israel to search out the country.” We are not told whether or not the spies knew Rahab was a harlot, but it was surely the divine intervention of God that they came upon the house of a harlot, where it would not be unusual for men to go. Nevertheless, the king of Jericho sends word to Rahab V3 “bring forth the men that are come to thee which are entered into thine house: for they be come to search out all the country” (Joshua 2:3). But V4 “Rahab took the two men, and hid them, and said thus, There came men unto me, but I wist not whence they were” and she further told them “when it was dark the men went out: wither the men went I wot not: pursue after them quickly; for ye shall overtake them.” But V6 Rahab “had brought them up to the roof of the house, and hid them with the stalks of flax, which she had laid in order upon the roof.” And the king’s men V7 “pursued after them the way to Jordan.…”

Before the spies had laid down V8 “she came up unto them upon the roof” and in Vs 9-11 Rahab gives the reasons for her actions. “I know that the LORD hath given you the land, and that your terror is fallen upon us, and that all the inhabitants of the land faint because of you. For we have heard how the LORD dried up the water of the Red sea for you, when ye came out of Egypt; and what ye did unto the two kings of the Amorites, that were on the other side Jordan, Sihon an Og, whom ye utterly destroyed. And as soon as we had heard these things, our hearts did melt, neither did there remain any more courage in any man, because of you: for the LORD your God, he is God in heaven above, and in earth beneath“. Rahab knew and believed that the LORD had given them the land, that the inhabitants were terribly afraid, and that they had heard about the parting of the Red Sea, and what had befallen the Amorites. Then she makes the great confession of faith; “for the LORD your God, he is God in heaven above, and in earth beneath”. Rahab, who is a Gentile, believes in God and exhibits saving faith. As Galatians 3:28 says “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus”.

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The Woman at the Well

The woman at the well, was a woman of Sychar, a city in Samaria. She is presented in the bible in John 4:7-42.  This portion of scripture is one of the most well-known incidents regarding women in the bible.

This meeting takes place when John the Baptist was still baptizing people, (John 3:23-24) and probably word of his preaching had spread to Samaria. Jesus has departed Judea and is on his way to Galilee, but scripture tells us John 4:4 “And he must needs go through Samaria.” He must needs, our omniscient Lord knew the events that would transpire there in the city of Sychar, at Jacob’s well. V5-6 “Then cometh he to a city of Samaria, which is called Sychar, near to the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. Now Jacob’s well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied with his journey, sat thus on the well: and it was about the sixth hour.” V8 tells us that the disciples of Jesus “were gone away unto the city to buy meat.” The plan of the Lord to be alone and to have quiet time for the meeting which he knew was to take place.

Verse 6 “..Jesus therefore, being wearied with his journey, sat thus on the well: and it was about the sixth hour.” What a statement. The Lord of the Universe, but weary as a man. V7 “There cometh a woman of Samaria to draw water: Jesus saith unto her, Give me to drink.” The woman is surprised that he, whom she recognizes as a Jew, would even speak to her, and addresses him thus, V9 “How is it that thou being a Jew, askest drink of me, a woman of Samaria? for the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans” She as yet has no clue that the man seated before her is God incarnate.

And now the Lord Jesus begins to speak to her of deeper things than a mere glass of water. Water could satisfy the physical thirst of a man, but the Lord was about to show this woman that unquenchable thirst that all sinners possess, whether they know it or not, the thirst for something more than this life can offer. V10 “Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water.” the gift of God, John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.“. This is the first suggestion to the woman that this was no ordinary request for a simple drink of water. He speaks to her of “living water” and we are reminded of John 7:38-39 “He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)”

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Bible Women: Mary Magdelene

What is the first thing you think of when you hear the name “Mary Magdalene”? Some people think that Mary was a prostitute who came to know Jesus as her Lord, yet there is absolutely no biblical evidence for this lie, that she was a prostitute. Neither should she be confused with the woman who was a sinner that came to Simon’s house where Jesus was. That woman was nameless, and scripture tells us that her weeping and repentance had saved her from her sins. This study will attempt to portray the truth about Mary Magdalene, a woman greatly blessed.

Verses pertaining to Mary are scattered throughout the gospels, each a piece of her story. We will bring them in chronological order, to best learn the truth.

Luke 8:1-3 is the earliest mention of Mary “And it came to pass afterward, that he went throughout every city and village, preaching and shewing the glad tidings of the kingdom of God: and the twelve were with him, and certain women, which had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities, Mary called Magdalene, out of whom went seven devils,…..and many others, which ministered unto him of their substance.”. Reading a few verses before, Luke 7:37-50 is the story of the woman who was a sinner. Luke 8:1 clearly states “and it came to pass afterward,” Thus we know that Mary Magdalene was NOT the woman who was a sinner.

Mary, along with others were healed of their infirmities. The name Magdalene signifies where she came from, Mary of Magdala. Imagine what a terrible state this poor woman must have been in. As the bible often does, it states an incredible occurrence in the simple statement “out of whom went seven devils”. This combines with Mark 16:9…he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils.” The devils acknowledge the Lord. Even today, we are told in Ephesians 6:12,16 “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.” In James 4:7 we learn that as believers we have the power thru the indwelling holy spirit to “resist the devil and he will flee from you”.

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Bible Women: Jephthah’s Daughter

This is a very sad story of a man who made a foolish vow before God, and his precious daughter suffered the consequences.  It is a warning to anyone who does not think before they speak.

Jephthah’s Daughter

Judges 11

It is important to remember, in the events that follow, that in the time of the judges, “In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes” (Judges 21:25) This book is filled with the consequences of people who did not look to the LORD in all their decisions. Thankfully, now we have these words to live by: Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”

In Judges Chapter 11, we have the tragic story of Jephthah and his beloved daughter, whose name we are not told.

Judges 11 opens with the first mention of Jephthah. V1 “Now Jephthah the Gileadite was a mighty man of valor, and he was the son of an harlot: and Gilead begat Jephthah“. So we know that Jephthah was born with a strike against him, he was not the son of his father’s wife, and indeed in V2-3 we learn that in the passage of time, “Gilead’s wife bare him sons; and his wife’s sons grew up, and they thrust out Jephthah and said unto him, Thou shalt not inherit in our father’s house; for thou art the son of a strange woman. Then Jephthah fled from his brethren, and dwelt in the land of Tob…” But then V4-6 when times got tough, who came to mind to help in the situation but Jephthah – “And it came to pass in the process of time, that the children of Ammon made war against Israel and it was so that…..the elders of Gilead went to fetch Jephthah out of the land of Tob. And they said unto Jephthah, Come, and be our captain that we may fight with the children of Ammon.” And remembering that Jephthah was previously driven out, Jephthah asks for glory for himself, even knowing that a victory would come from the LORD. V9 “If ye bring me home again to fight against the children of Ammon, and the LORD deliver them before me, shall I be your head?” So Jephthah is given a place of honor and respect, V10-11 “And the elders of Gilead said unto Jephthah, the LORD be witness between us, if we do not so according to thy words. Then Jephthah went with the elders of Gilead, and the people made him head and captain over them: and Jephthah uttered all his words before the LORD in Mizpeh”

And so V12-23 Jephthah sends word to the king of the Ammonites, relating the events leading up to the possession of the land by Israel and saying V23 “So now the LORD God of Israel hath dispossessed the Amorites from before his people Israel, and shouldest thou possess it?

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Bible Women: Bathsheba

Bathsheba, mother of Solomon, named in the genealogy of our Lord Jesus Christ as “her that had been the wife of Uriah” (Matthew 1:6) inferring adultery. Bathsheba has been portrayed as a temptress, but what is the truth of what really happened?

2 Samuel 11:1-5 “And it came to pass, after the year was expired, at the time when kings go forth to battle, that David sent Joab, and his servants with him, and all Israel; and they destroyed the children of Ammon, and besieged Rabbah. But David tarried still at Jerusalem. And it came to pass in an eveningtide, that David arose from off his bed, and walked upon the roof of the king’s house: and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself; and the woman was very beautiful to look upon. And David sent and enquired after the woman. And one said Is not this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite? And David sent messengers, and took her; and she came in unto him, and he lay with her; for she was purified from her uncleanness: and she returned unto her house. And the woman conceived, and sent and told David, and said, I am with child.”

Bathsheba is introduced at a time when King David should have been to battle, but he sent Joab instead. V1 “But David tarried still at Jerusalem”  Whenever you see that little word “But” you know that something is going to happen. One evening V2 “David arose from off his bed and walked upon the roof of the king’s house and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself; and the woman was very beautiful to look upon.” The lust of the eye, the temptation of the flesh, but one in the foreknowledge, who works all things together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called, according to his purpose..(Romans 8:28) Here is the beginning of events that will bring sorrow to David for many years to come. Matthew 5:28 “But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart“.

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Bible Women: Abigail, a Woman’s Courage

1 Samuel 25:1-42

Abigail’s story is one of a godly wife of a very difficult man. Her courage in intervening for her household leads to her being greatly blessed by God.

Abigail’s story takes place in 1 Samuel, chapter 25. David has separated from King Saul and gone down to the wilderness of Paran, where there lives a very rich man named Nabal, whose wife’s name is Abigail. Verse 3 tells us that “she was a woman of good understanding, and of a beautiful countenance, but the man was churlish and evil in his doings; and he was of the house of Caleb.” Churlish (according to Websters 1828 dictionary) means rudeness of manners or temper, unyielding, harsh. We must take note that the first thing said about Abigail is very important: that she was a woman of good understanding. Proverbs 13:15 “Good understanding giveth favour: but the way of transgressors is hard.” We shall see how true this statement is.

Verses 4 – 8 – David learns that Nabal was shearing his sheep so he sends ten of his young men to go to Nabal, and greet him in David’s name offering him peace. David has not harmed anything belonging to Nabal, and desires that Nabal would share of his prosperity with David. In view of later happenings, we speculate that it is food for himself and his men that he desires.

Verses 10-11 – Nabal denies David his request, using the excuse that he does not know if it is really David or a pretender.

Verses 12-13 David learns of Nabal’s decision and tells his men to “gird ye on every man his sword. And they girded on every man his sword: and David also girded on his sword:…” and David went forth with 400 of his men leaving 200 men behind.

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