My friend and I were discussing my previous article ‘The Pains of the African woman’ and were all sad about how women around us thought that they neither have a choice nor a voice. He pointed out that the cause of all this is the bible since it is the most popular and yet chauvinistic book in the universe.
This got me thinking about the feministic themed mentorship program I ran awhile back. The girls and I looked at the women of substance-the women who made a difference in society both in history (biblical and non-biblical) and contemporary society.
These are just but a few of the names that came up from the Bible;
Esther (Esther 2)
Esther was the one who replaced Queen Vashti as wife of King Xerxes/Ahasuerus of Persia after she disobeyed the King. After learning that Haman, the King’s advisor had asked the King to authorize a royal decree to annihilate the Jews (her people) who had been driven out of Israel and exiled in Persia, she came up with a brave plan to stop it from happening.
Being the Queen, and after fasting for three days to seek for God’s grace and favor, she asked the King and Haman to dine with her twice and on the second time, she who had hidden her faith from the King, revealed her secret and begged the King to spare her and her people’s (the Jews) lives.
Rahab (Joshua 2)
Though an Amorite, Rahab recognized the Jewish men who were sent by Joshua to scout Jericho as men of God and hid them from the king of Jericho. Furthermore, she understood that God had given the Israelite the Amorites’ land and was key instrument to the Israelites successful claim of the land.
The wise woman of Tekoah (2nd Samuel 14)
After killing his brother Amnon, David banished his son Absalom. This resulted to Joab seeking the help of the wise woman of Tekoah to convince David to lift the banishment and reconcile with his son.
The woman went to David crying and recalled how one of his sons killed his brother and the rest of her family were seeking his head. When David said that the son should be spared, she said so should Absalom. Therefore David lifted the banishment and Absalom returned home.
Abigail (1st Samuel 25)
She was the wife of Nabal from the house of Caleb. She is described as a woman of good understanding and beautiful countenance. And true to that, those are the qualities that saved her husband Nabal from death by the King’s hand for disregarding and insulting King David and saved David from blood-shed.
She placated him, reminded him that God will establish his dynasty and urged him not to have staggering burden of needless bloodshed on his conscience.
In conclusion, there is no book that has explicitly shown just how both intelligent and powerful a woman is like the Bible. So people, other than respect, I may not fully understand what else the Bible meant by ‘wives, submit to your husbands’ but one thing I know for sure is it doesn’t mean women should let their husbands oppress and suppress them.
Hit the comments box below for discussion.