8 Amazing Women God Used to Change the World

 

I love reading stories in the Bible of how God used women to tell His story. You can never say God doesn’t value women, for goodness sakes He had to create Eve because Adam needed help. There are many great stories about women in the Bible, and their lives have left lessons for not only women but men can learn something from them as well. Here are 8 women from Bible whose stories I think are captivating and inspiring.

8 Amazing Women from the Bible

  1. Rahab (Joshua 2; 6:22-23)
    • Rahab was a prostitute. She lived in Jericho, part of the Promised Land God planned to give the Israelites. She saved two of the Israelites sent in to spy on the city and gather intel, hiding them on the roof and letting them out her window to safety. She, like the others in the city, had heard all about what God had done to the Egyptians and any other enemy of the Israelites. I don’t know what else she heard in the mix but it made her want to know more about God, it made her want to give up her lifestyle and find a new life in God with His people the Israelites. Not only did God save her and her family before the destruction of Jericho, but He also used her in the family lineage of His Son Jesus. Rahab married a man named Salmon, and they had a child named Boaz, who married the next woman on my list…
  2. Ruth (The Book of Ruth)
    • A Moabite woman who served other gods and ended up marrying an Israelite. He, his brother, and father sadly died, leaving their mother, Naomi alone with her two daughters-in-law.  Ruth stays with Naomi, while her sister-in-law Orpah goes back home. Ruth left her everything comfortable to live with Naomi in Bethlehem (yes the same one where Jesus would be born decades later). She meets Boaz, Rahab’s son, they get married through some amazing, God oriented, circumstances, and Ruth is now apart of the lineage of Jesus as well, for her son Obed has a son named Jesse, and Jesse has a son named David, who would later to become King David.

       “Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab, Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth, Obed the father of Jesse,  and Jesse the father of King David….. and Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary, and Mary was the mother of Jesus who is called the Messiah.  Thus there were fourteen generations in all from Abraham to David, fourteen from David to the exile to Babylon, and fourteen from the exile to the Messiah.”

      Matthew 1:5-6, 16-17

  3. Esther (The Book of Esther)
    • A simple Jewish girl living in Persia, this was after the Babylonians conquered Israelites and exiled them from Jerusalem. The King of Persia kicks out his queen for embarrassing him at his party. All girls in Persia are swept up to the palace to possibly become the next queen. Esther gets the role, and at just the right time (Esther 4:14). The King’s right-hand man has decided to take his hatred for Mordecai the Jew, Esther’s uncle, out on the entire Jewish race by getting the King to order their annihilation. God’s name is never mentioned directly in the book of Esther (Yes, the second book in the Bible to be named after the woman it’s about) but His fingerprints are all over it. Esther chooses to speak up, to stand for her people instead of hiding behind the safety of her crown. She saves her people, one woman saves the entire Jewish race, a woman who God used, who allowed God to use her for His plan.
  4. Deborah (Judges 4)
    • Another woman of authority. During the time after the fall of Jericho the Israelites began to turn away from God, so He sent them help in form of judges, and for a while they would do better until the judge died. They went through this cycle for quite some time and during this period God used a woman lead His people. Here’s part of her story “Now Deborah, a prophet, the wife of Lappidoth, was leading Israel at that time. She held court under the Palm of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in the hill country of Ephraim, and the Israelites went up to her to have their disputes decided.  She sent for Barak son of Abinoam from Kedesh in Naphtali and said to him, “The Lord, the God of Israel, commands you: ‘Go, take with you ten thousand men of Naphtali and Zebulun and lead them up to Mount Tabor.  I will lead Sisera, the commander of Jabin’s army, with his chariots and his troops to the Kishon River and give him into your hands.’” Barak said to her, “If you go with me, I will go; but if you don’t go with me, I won’t go.” “Certainly, I will go with you,” said Deborah. “But because of the course you are taking, the honor will not be yours, for the Lord will deliver Sisera into the hands of a woman.” Can you say girl power?! I love Deborah and how God used her to not only lead His people with wisdom but also into battle. Barak’s mistake here is also a great lesson for us, a reminder that if we don’t trust in the Lord we miss out the blessings He has for us. God was going to give Barak an amazing victory, but Barak for whatever reason let fear take over trust and God gave the victory to Deborah instead. It should also be noted that Deborah helped calm disputes among the people, SHE WAS A PEACEMAKER  and we women should follow her example. We, women, need to stop being poster children for drama and be peacemakers instead.
  5. Mary the Mother of Jesus (Luke 1-2) 
    • Most people know Mary’s story. A sixteen-year-old, virgin girl, visited by an angel and told she’s going to have a baby. This baby would become the Messiah, He would be called Jesus, the Son of God, He would save the world from spiritual death. That’s a lot for a sixteen-old girl to handle, but God was literally with her the entire way, and when she first found out she didn’t say “No way!” She basically said, okay I believe you, but how is this going to work? (Luke 1:34). Then she said “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May your word to me be fulfilled.” She was ready, she was trusting God, she put her game face on and the Lord richly blessed her.
  6. Abigail (1 Samuel 25)
    • I’ve always loved Abigail’s story, and not just because we share a name, but because of the bravery she showed and the trust in God despite some less than stellar circumstances she found herself in. Her husband was mean-spirited, and though it doesn’t come right out and say it in the Bible, his actions and attitude make me believe he didn’t treat her kindly. She stayed with him, apologized to King David for him, and that alone showed true grace and courage. In the end, her husband’s actions lead to his death, King David rescues her, and she becomes one of his wives.
  7. Lydia (Acts 16:11-15)
    • Lydia was a businesswoman who crossed paths with Paul and Silas in Philippi. Her business was in selling purple clothe which meant she sold to a wealthy clientele, therefore, she made plenty to live on, and it doesn’t say Lydia had a husband, so she made this good living to support herself. Lydia and a group of other women were meeting together and talking about God when Paul and Silas showed up. Though called a “worshiper of God” Lydia had not yet been saved. She was seeking the Truth and discovered its entirety when she heard Paul teach. God opened her heart to receive the Gospel, and the God of the Jews now became her God. Lydia asks Paul and Silas to come to her house, and the rest of her household became and baptized. Lydia became the first European convert, and since she catered to a wealthy clientele, I have to wonder if she made sure to tell them the Good News she now fully grasped. I can imagine she was a great asset to the new church. I want to be like Lydia, a businesswoman who makes a living to support herself while making time for Bible study and living out the Word of God. 

8 & 9. Timothy’s Mother Eunice and Grandmother Lois (2 Timothy 1:5; 3:14-15)

  • Talk about a legacy of faith. Timothy is a young man, raised by his mother, Eunice and grandmother Lois. It doesn’t say anything about his father, maybe he had one, but his mother and grandmother were central in his life and spiritual upbringing. Timothy becomes Paul’s apprentice and Paul’s writing a letter to him, encouraging and instructing him. Now, he’s opening another letter from Paul who tells him, “I remember your genuine faith, for you share the faith that first filled your grandmother Lois and your mother, Eunice. And I know that same faith continues in you” (2 Timothy 1:5)Timothy learned his faith through his mother and grandmother, and for Paul to point out their faith like this I have to believe they lived bold lives of faith. I’m blessed to say I have seen a life of bold faith in my mother whose parents brought her up in the faith as well. It’s a legacy of faith passed down to me and my sister. Not all children grow up with that though, and if they do many of them choose to walk down a different path, far away from faith. As women, our lives need to be marked by faith. Maybe some of us will never have children to pass it on to, but we might have nieces, or perhaps you’re a teacher whose students need to see the love of Christ. Our lives need to speak of our faith as Lois’ and Eunice’s did. If you’ve been raised by Eunice or Lois choose to mirror their faith, don’t walk away from it or treat it with disdain. “But you must remain faithful to the things you have been taught. You know they are true for you know you can trust those who taught you. You have been taught the Scriptures from childhood, and they have given you the wisdom to receive the salvation that comes by trusting in Christ Jesus” (2 Timothy 3:14-15)

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