By Kevin Guigou – Associate Pastor
In the creation narratives of Genesis, man and woman were each made with the divine image of God and with it came the equally shared responsibility to govern over what he had created.
“So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female he created them.” Genesis 1:27 NKJV (Hebrew adam means “mankind”)
As partners, they were commissioned to tend the garden and to rule over the animals and entire physical world.
Yet after the first couple’s rebellion, consequences included increased difficulties in the activities of marriage, childbirth, and physical labor (Genesis 3:16-19).
Conflicting struggles of authority and responsibility have continued in marriages, in families, and among God’s people ever since that tumble from humanity’s Edenic beginnings.
A New Covenant
BUT GOD’s plan of redemption birthed men and women into a new covenant. The Holy Spirit’s infilling became the great equalizer between sexual genders, races, ethnicities, and nationalities.
Any strife or hatred between those distinctions should dissolve in the shared presence of God’s spirit, word, and love!
Even though the two genders were designed with wonderous differences, in the broadest spiritual sense, God doesn’t play favorites between the two sexes.
“For in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith…there is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” Galatians 3:26-28 ESV
Women of the OT
Even under the times and cultures of the Old Testament, God commissioned and energized women who put their trust in him. Over 300 ladies or groups of them are mentioned there. Here are just a few among those 300.
- Deborah, Judges 4: a prophetess and one of 12 judges over Israel, which included military leadership
- Esther, the book of Esther: a queen of Persia who risked her life to save her people
- Sarah, Genesis 17-25: wife of Abraham and mother of nations
- Jochebed, Exodus 2: mother of Moses, defied Pharoah’s order to kill male Hebrew infants
- Miriam, Exodus 2; 15; Micah 6:4: a prophetess, influential sister of Moses, and part of the leadership team
- Isaiah’s wife, Isaiah 8:3: a prophetess
- Huldah, 2 Kings 22 (look for her name in verse 14): an influential prophetess under the reign of King Josiah.
The following women of the Old Testament showed strength and wisdom as well. Much of their fearless faithfulness over many generations directly laid the groundwork for the birth of the Messiah.
- Ruth, the book of Ruth: a woman in the genealogy of Christ who forsook her place of origin to follow the Lord and take care of her mother-in-law, Naomi
- Hannah, 1 Samuel 1: mother of the prophet Samuel who demonstrates powerful prayer
- Abigail, 1 Samuel 25: an “intelligent and beautiful” woman who saved her entire household from destruction and later became the wife of a king
- Rahab, Joshua 2: an outcast who sheltered Joshua and Caleb and saved them from capture
- Jael, Judges 4: a commoner who assassinated an army general and helped deliver the children of Israel (see below a painting by Artemisia Gentileschi in 1620 depicting this scene)
There are significant women who work for the Lord’s kingdom in the New Testament as well. Like Christian Family Fellowship on Facebook to be alerted when Part Two of “God’s Women: On the Front Lines of His Kingdom” focusing on them is released!