Women Of The Bible
As Examples Of Serving
The contributions of women in the Bible to the welfare of others are immense. While the ministry the woman was created for pertains mainly to the home, as children depart the keeper of the home will find that she is more available to serve others. Let’s look at some examples of ministry in the home, from the home and beyond the home performed by women of the Bible.
Ministry In The Home
Mother Eunice and Grandmother Lois taught Timothy the Scriptures from childhood (2 Tim. 3:15). Jochebed received her son Moses back from the river, taught him about God, and no matter how hard those in the palace tried, they could not remove her training (Ex. 2). Moses grew to esteem God more than the pleasures, the wealth and the politics of Egypt (Heb. 11:24-26). Hannah nursed her son Samuel, made clothes for him and presented him to the Lord in the temple as she had vowed to do (1 Sam. 1). She also prayed for his fruitful service. Sarah respected her husband’s authority. Proverbs 31 tells us that King Lemuel’s mother warned him of the dangers of embracing wayward women (31:3), of abusing wine (31:4-7), and of being just and fair in all his doings (31:8-9). The noble wife of Proverbs 31:10-31 was her husband’s trusted companion – a virtuous woman, a skillful mother and a productive keeper of the home.
Ministry From The Home
Priscilla, the wife of Aquila, co-labored with Paul in tent making, in the gospel and discipling (Acts 18:2-3). It is evident from Scripture that she and her husband also used their home for the kingdom of God (Acts 18:24-26; 1 Cor. 16:19; Rom. 16:5). In so doing, they both risked their lives to serve Christ (Rom. 16:3-4). Martha showed hospitality to the Lord and others in her home (Lk. 10:38; Jn. 12:2). Rahab used her home (marked by the scarlet thread, a symbol representing the redeeming blood of Christ) to spread the warning of God’s imminent judgment, and consequently saved a house full of people (Josh. 2,6). Peter’s mother-in-law was hospitable to the Lord and His disciples (Mk. 1:31). The mother of Rufus was such an encouragement to Paul that he considered her his own mother (Rom. 16:13).
Ministry Beyond The Home
Joanna and Susanna provided for the Lord out of their substance, probably meals and clothing (Lk. 8:3). Dorcas was full of good works and charitable deeds; she made garments for widows (Acts 9:36, 39). Phoebe was a servant in the church, a helper of many including Paul (Rom. 16:1-2). Mary worshiped the Lord by anointing His feet with precious ointment (Jn. 12:1-7). Euodia and Syntyche labored in the gospel with Paul (Phil. 4:3). Esther risked her life in coming before the king to be an intercessor for her people (Est. 4-5). Ruth gleaned in wheat and barley fields, beat out the grain, and provided for the needs of Naomi (Ruth 2). Deborah was a notably wise woman who rendered personal counsel to many in Israel including Barak (Jud. 4). Abigail bestowed godly advice to David, and after pondering her wisdom for a moment, He replied, “Blessed is your advice and blessed are you” (1 Sam. 25:33 NKJV). Older women taught younger women how to better love their husbands and children (Ti. 2:4).
From the above examples, and others in Scripture, non-domestic ministry contributions by women today could include: serving at meetings (Heb. 10:25), teaching angels about divine order and submission through the head covering (1 Cor. 11:10), financial support, prayer (1 Th. 5:17), music (Eph. 5:19), children’s ministry, mentoring other women (Ti. 2:4-5), missionary work, gospel outreach, visiting the sick, and providing clothing, food, companionship and practical help to the needy. This is by no means an exhaustive list. There is much for women to do, but Scripture does provide some boundaries for their ministry.
Obedience: A Blessed Ministry
Dear sisters, the next time Satan tempts you to be discontent with your God-given ministry, just remember what his rebellion accomplished for him – an eternity in hell! When temptation comes, train your eye upon all the blessings you have in Christ. Don’t be tempted into thinking you deserve more than what your Creator has already graciously bestowed. You honor the Lord by abiding in His will for your life, and in doing so, you will experience the most joy in living!
By Warren Henderson
With permission to publish by: Sam Hadley, Grace & Truth, 210 Chestnut St., Danville, IL., USA. Website: www.gtpress.org