Powerful Bible Women — Models for Today?
Today, when women’s rights are at the forefront of public policy debates, it may be surprising to learn that some very powerful role models from thousands of years ago can be found in the Bible. The daughters of Zelophehad talked back to Moses about inheritance rights (and won). Achsah successfully demanded that her husband and father-in-law provide more desirable land than was offered. Deborah had to goad a reluctant Barak into battle (and won). There are dozens of examples in the Bible of heroic women, and we will meet them all. In addition, we will encounter some of the tough women who were not so nice, like Jezebel and her daughter Athalia, who was the only queen ever to rule in pre-exilic Israel. Many of these women could easily be spokespersons for speaking truth to power, like Bathsheba, Tamar, Esther, Hannah, Huldah, Jael, Judith, Shiphrah and Puah, Sheerah, two Sarahs, Susanna, Vashti, Zipporah, and others. New Testament women include Mary Magdalene and her friends who, among others, supported Jesus spiritually and financially.