“Women of God, Arise!”

“For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place and you and your father’s house will perish.  And who knows whether you have not attained royalty for such a time as this? – Esther 4:14

Women of God: You have come into the kingdom for such a time as this.  You must intervene.  You must intercede.  You must speak out.  You must obey the call of the Holy Spirit.  Don’t listen to the religious voices that tell you a virtuous woman spends all her time tending to the mundane matters of hearth and home.  Don’t listen to those who coax Christian women to focus all their attention on how to be submissive.

–         J. Lee Grady, 10 lies the Church Tells Women, p. 204.

Are we in a spiritual war or not?  Are countless souls perishing into a Christ-less eternity every day on planet earth?  Why, oh why, do so many Christian women sit on the sidelines and leave the spiritual fighting to the menfolk?  That’s like going into battle at half-troop strength.  Continues Grady:

“In this hour God is rallying an army of Esthers who are willing to risk their lives, break patriarchal traditions and contradict society in order to rescue a generation that has been marked for death.  Like Esther, you may have to fast and pray for the courage to obey.  No matter how inadequate you feel or how afraid you are, you may be called to speak to the highest authorities in the land.”

Is “I was a woman and only men can do that” a valid excuse for “dereliction of duty”?  Concludes Grady:

“You will have to trust God, and your test of faith may not be easy.  Although you may feel miserably helpless, you will be required to lay hold of the courage and faith that is available from the Holy Spirit.  He will show Himself might on behalf of those who are known as the ‘weaker sex.’

With His mighty power working in you, like the fearless maiden, Jael, in the story of Deborah, you will drive the stake in the head of the enemy.”

There’s a reason Scripture calls Satan the “Father of lies” (John 8:44).  Women of God, he fears you.  Is it any wonder he seeks to keep so many modern-day Esthers, Deborahs, Junias, Huldahs, Nymphas, Priscillas, Lydias, Chloes and other Christian women sidelined, out of the battle?  Where do you think those crippling gender lies came from?  Don’t swallow ‘em.  Truth is your weapon.  Faith is your shield.   Don’t let empty tradition or prejudice stand in you way.  As God has called, gifted and directed, respond.
Rise up and join the battle.

***

For further reading:

Man and Woman: One in Christ by Dr. Phillip Payne is a robust exegetical analysis of gender in Scripture. One reader said that if every elder in her denomination were to read Payne’s book, women would soon serve as elders!

Women in the World of the Earliest Christians: Illuminating Ancient Ways of Life by Lynn Cohick.  An impressive book from a scholar with a reputation for able storytelling, Cohick carries us into the world of biblical women and brings us a new look at life for women in the New Testament.

Jesus Through Middle Eastern Eyes by Kenneth Bailey.  An analysis of Middle Eastern culture from a scholar who spent most of his life in this culture. Bailey’s fluency with the eastern texts and culture make the words and deeds of Jesus more comprehensible to western readers. This book will deepen your understanding of Jesus’ parables as they impart dignity and authority to women.

Manfred Brauch’s Abusing Scripture: The Consequences of Misreading the Bible by Manfred Brauch.  Addressing the discipline of biblical interpretation, Abusing exposes errors in Scripture interpretation that abuse women and suppress their dignity, authority and service in churches and families.

A Sword between the Sexes: C.S. Lewis and the Gender Debates by Mary Stewart Van Leeuwen.  Reveals her enormous grasp of psychology, gender and philosophy in the first comprehensive assessment of gender and faith in the writings of C.S. Lewis.

Mary Evans and Cathie Kroeger’s Women’s Study Bible: New Insights for All God’s People explores often overlooked women while tackling difficult life issues (ancient and new) to inform everyone’s daily reading of Scripture.

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Up next: Another Blind Side, followed by a series on Spiritual Abuse. Some topics we plan to cover:

–                      What spiritual abuse isn’t.

–                      Biblical backgrounds.

–                      Characteristics and “hallmarks” of spiritual abuse.

–                      Indicators, identifiers, examples and categories.

–                     Who and how.

–                      Some of the dynamics in play related to spiritual abuse.

–                       Healing and hope.

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One Response

  1. Awesome encouragement shared! Thank you so much!!

    I’m currently working through Beth Moore’s study of Esther & it is truly amazing, eye opening, and encouraging. Highly recommend as well to see how we women are truly made for a perfect time – His timing is all that matters.

    Blessings, Hugs, & Prayers, hL

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