Black Christians : Women Of The Bible

Discussion in 'Christian Study Group' started by cherryblossom, Mar 15, 2010.

  1. cherryblossom

    cherryblossom Banned MEMBER

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    Shunammite - Women of the Bible


    2 Kings 4:8 - 37
    The Shunammite woman was a wealthy and well respected person in the society. This is how the Bible described her.

    In Deborah we saw a leader, in Hannah a prayerful woman, in Abigail an intelligent woman and the Shunammite a wealthy and well respected person in the society. This gives us a true picture of how the Bible views woman.

    The Shunammite woman had a kind heart. Keeping your heart right, full of love and empty of bitterness is the secret of receiving from God.

    The Shunammite woman used her kindness and wealth to entertain a prophet (2 Kings 4:8-10). She got blessed with a child because of her kindness. This was inline with God's promise (Matthew 10:41).

    The Shunammite woman had three qualities that are essential in every woman of God.

    Contentment
    A kind heart (compassion)
    Persistence

    The Shunammite woman's life teaches us important lessons about these three essential qualities.
    Contentment (1 Timothy 6:1- 10)
    When Elisha asked the woman what he could do for her she simply stated the fact that she was happy with what she had (2 King 4:11-13).

    She was a wealthy woman and did have a lot to be happy about. We all have things we can thank God for. Keep your focus on the good things God has blessed you with. This is the secret of a happy and thankful heart. The Shunammite woman's thankful and gratitude of heart opened the door to more blessings in her life. Are you living a thankful life?

    By being thankful of what God had given her instead of worrying about what she did not have the Shunammite woman was able to enjoy her present blessings to the full and receive even more.

    An unthankful heart forsakes the present joys and blessings and concentrates (or worries) on what might not happen in the future. This is a poor way to live life, especially when you are serving such a kind and loving God.....
     
  2. cherryblossom

    cherryblossom Banned MEMBER

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    Manoah's wife - Women of the Bible



    Judges Chapters 13 - 14
    The story of Manoah's wife is one of the most incredible stories in the Bible. It is a beautiful story that demonstrates the love and power of the God who we serve.

    Manoah was the father of Samson. He married a woman who was sterile and childless. (Judges 13).

    One day the angel of the Lord appeared to Manoah's wife and told her she would have a child.

    Many Bible scholars believe that the term "the angel of the Lord" refers to the special appearances of Jesus prior to his physical birth via Mary. The Lord did appear to people during the period of the Old testament in the form of a man (Genesis 18). There are also several occurrences that refer to the appearance of "the angel of the Lord" (Genesis 16:7; 22:11; 31:11; Exodus 3:2; 14:19; Judges 2:1; 13:3; Zechariah 3:1-6)

    Manoah's wife was one of the few people who the angel of the Lord appeared to. The angel appeared as a man (Judges 13:11-15) and his words gave the barren couple a child. What an amazing God we serve. God took the trouble to send his "messenger" to a woman that seemed totally insignificant (we do not even know her name).

    God's way of valuing people is different from the world's. Never look down on yourself. God doesn't.

    The appearance of the angel to Manoah's wife teaches us about two ways God moves in the affairs of mankind. God can move in sovereignty or (and) supernaturally.

    God's sovereign acts are the things He choices to do without any prompting or desire from us. This is what happened in Judges 13:3. The angel of the Lord came without any invitation or prayer request from Manoah's family.

    God's supernatural acts are the things He does on our request. This is what happened in Judges 13:8 - 31. It was the prayer of Manoah that brought the angel of the Lord back the second time.

    God's sovereign acts are for the few people He chooses to touch in this way, whereas His supernatural acts are for everyone who would reach out to Him in faith....
     
  3. Chevron Dove

    Chevron Dove Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    This is really good, Sister.

    I am also reminded of Elizabeth when I read this post too.

    the mother of John-the-Baptist
     
  4. cherryblossom

    cherryblossom Banned MEMBER

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    The wife of Pontius Pilate in Matthew's gospel

    There is only one reference to this woman, in Matthew's 27:19:

    'While he was sitting on the judgment seat, his wife sent word to him, "Have nothing to do with that innocent man, for today I have suffered a great deal because of a dream about him."
     
  5. cherryblossom

    cherryblossom Banned MEMBER

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    Question: "Did Jephthah sacrifice his daughter to the Lord?"

    Answer: A judge of Israel, Jephthah, had made a foolish vow to the Lord that if God gave him victory in battle, he would sacrifice whatever first came out of his door when he came home (Judges 11:30-31). Jephthah’s daughter was the first thing to come of out his door when he came home (Judges 11:34). The Bible never specifically tells us whether Jephthah actually sacrificed his daughter as a burnt offering. Judges 11:39 seems to indicate that he did, "he did to her as he had vowed." However, since his daughter was mourning the fact that she would never marry instead of mourning that she was about to die (Judges 11:37-37), possibly indicates that Jephthah gave her to the tabernacle as a servant instead of sacrificing her.

    Whatever the case, God had specifically forbidden offering human sacrifices, so God never would have wanted Jephthah to sacrifice his daughter (Leviticus 20:1-5). Jeremiah 7:31, 19:5, and 32:35 clearly indicate that the idea of human sacrifice has "never even entered God's mind." Jephthah serves as an example for us, not to make foolish vows or oaths.



    http://www.gotquestions.org/Jephthahs-daughter.html
     
  6. cherryblossom

    cherryblossom Banned MEMBER

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    Achsah appears in two books of the Bible. Both recount similar stories of her ambition. Often we hear that Godly women have nothing to do with family finances....someone forgot to tell Achsah. We learn first that Achsah is the daughter of Caleb, and that she is being given as a prize to the warrior to captures Kiriath-sepher. The Bible doesn't tell us how Achsah felt about this arrangement, but it does show us that she wasn't our typical damsel in distress.

    Joshua 15:16-19:

    And Caleb said, 'Whoever attacks Kiriath-sepher and takes it, to him I will give my daughter Achsah as wife.' Othniel son of Kenaz, the brother of Caleb, took it; and he gave him his daughter Achsah as wife. When she came to him, she urged him to ask her father for a field. As she dismounted from her donkey. Caleb said to her, 'What do you wish?' She said to him, 'Give me a present; since you have set me in the land of the Negeb, give me springs of water as well.' So Caleb gave her the upper springs and the lower springs.

    Far from being a victim in this story, Achsah asserts herself to gain land. Sometimes this story is to show a woman "taking advantage", usually of weak man, but that simply isn't what the Bible tells us. Othniel is a warrior, capable of attacking Kiriath-sepher and winning. Obviously, he did not attack the city alone, but commanded other men in the assault, demonstrating leadership skills and strength. When Achsah decided she should have more land, she "urged" him to ask Caleb for more land. The warrior agreed with his wife. Then when Caleb comes she asks herself--and is granted her request. Neither Caleb nor Othniel indicate she has over-stepped her bounds. Far from assuming she has "usurped" her husband's authority, Caleb gives her the land.

    Judges 1:12-15:

    Then Caleb said, 'Whoever attacks Kiriath-sepher and takes it, I will give him my daughter Achsah as wife.' And Othniel son of Kenaz, Caleb's younger brother, took it; and he gave him his daughter Achsah as wife. When she came to him, she urged him to ask her father for a field. As she dismounted from her donkey, Caleb said to her, 'What do you wish?' She said to him, 'Give me a present; since you have set me in the land of the Negeb, give me also Gulloth and Lower Gulloth.

    Again, we notice that Achsah decided to ask for the land, asked for the land herself, and received the land.

    1 Chronicles 2:49:

    She also bore Shaaph father of Madmannah, Sheva father of Machbenah and father of Gibea; and the daughter of Caleb was Achsah.

    http://www.alabaster-jars.com/biblewomen-a.html#achsah
     
  7. Chevron Dove

    Chevron Dove Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    I've wondered about this for years.

    This is so profound. But if God did not back up and let his permissive will go through then, we would have to consider other issues.

    For example, when Abraham was about to go through with his purpose regarding his son Isaac, the Creator God intervened and there was a RAM IN THE BUSH and therefore, Abraham sacrificed the Ram instead. But in the case of Jepthath, God made no intervention. Unlike Abraham who did not sware upon the life of his son but only was about to go through with an act that he had gotten from God, on the other hand, Japthat was the sole initiator of such a swearing upon someone elses life, of which just happened to be his own daughter. It seems like a pagan practice, what he did and God took him up on it to prove some kind of point, in regards to Jephthath having to cleave from the ways of his 'wayward' mother's people as opposed to his 'Israelite' father people!?

    Jephthat based the freedom of many people and sware that if they had gotten the victory byway of him that he would sacrifice someone elses life and, God obviously took him up on it. And when his daughter, showed how much she loved her father, submitted so that her father could be freed up under the yoke he put himself under. It seems like she gave up her life for her father and her father's people. I'm not absolutely sure though. But I believe that she was an incredible girl and the Bible shows this. I think the story goes that she ask for a set amount of time to weep for her lost virginity. She wanted to purge herself from sin for her previous whoredom, in my opinion, to be an acceptable offering to God to free her father from his sin and after this, the ending is left for our imaginations.

    Did the Creator God permit her to be sacrificed? Well, to answer that I ponder some of these issues; The Bible states in Leviticus that a king of Israel was not suppose to take a bunch of wives but, God permitted David to make this blunder after the Pentatuch was written and obviously he was forgiven. The Bible states that if a person commits adultery they were supposed to be stoned, but David who did this was not stoned. He begged mercy under Nathen the high priest and we know he was forgiven of this sin but the repercussions were terrible, yet, David survived it to the end. He took on his own sins and made it through until the end. Samsun made a bunch of blunders too and God permitted him to reap the negative benefits of what he set out to do in his own stubborness and determination. Yet, God forgave him in the end and answered his request and allowed him to strike back at the Philistines one last time. And then there was one time when Moses told God, 'their life for mine' [paraphrasing], when the Hebrews acted out immorally and angered God. But God told Moses, no. In other words, God did not honor Moses to spare the sinners but slew all of the Israelites who did make themselves 'naked' [committed sex acts]...in that incidence. There was a time when Aaron ran through the crowd with incense trying to make intercession for the people but, God told him basically, 'don't even worry about it, they are already dead.'

    The Creator God is no joke. sometimes he allows us to go through with stuff we create and it becomes a shock and an example for a reason. Jephthaths father's actions may have become a testament towards the men of Israel of why God made laws against them bonding with strange women and how it affects their generations. This can be seen countless times through stories of the second and third generations with other leaders in the Bible as well, such as the story of, I think, Gideon too. I think one of his sons from a strange women came back later after the death of Gideon and killed 70 of his legatimate sons based upon the revengeful hearts of his mother's people. And then i think Gideon too, might have been sought out like Jepthath as a result of the legate sons who initially oppressed him because he was illegate and then later asked him to help them...All in all, I believe these actions are the fruit of someones actions to deceive.

    I know that if I was 'the other woman' and my son was made to suffer because he was shunned and not given an inheritance and then, I heard that my son's father's people became 'the big men of the day', I too would be angry and hurt... feelings of rejection... The question is did those strange women feel that they should be elevated higher than the Hebrew women and did they have apart in the deception.

    Intrigue. But in the end, the daughter of Jephthath purged herself from whoredom and willingly submitted herself to 'something' on behalf of her father and her father's people; her people. Amazing.

    I think Jephthath went through with it. He made a oath to the Creator God based upon 'if Israel won'. They did win. Therefore, I think he had to go through with it because there was no 'ram in the bush' mentioned. So that God would not turn back on Israel, I think he had to go through with it. Did not God give up his own son so that we might get the victory?... hmh. Deep story. profound story.
     
  8. cherryblossom

    cherryblossom Banned MEMBER

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    Interesting points, CD.


    However, whatever he actually did and what God condones may not be the same.

    As a Bible believer, the Bible does not contradict itself nor does God.

    God condemned human sacrifice. So, if Jephthah actually sacrificed his own daughter, then God did not condone that nor accept it.
     
  9. Chevron Dove

    Chevron Dove Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    so true.

    But in response to this, i think about the sin of adultery, and David. I know that God did not accept adultery nor condone it as well. And the baby was not allow to live.

    ADD TO THOUGHT;

    So I guess it could be thought of like this, so that David was not stone, it was either him or the baby. Was that baby 'sacrificed' as a result of David not being stoned to death? The baby did not sin, Bathsheba did not sin. Uriah did not sin but, David did. The baby died. And David lived on as the king of Israel for years.
     
  10. cherryblossom

    cherryblossom Banned MEMBER

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    ...“But the thing that David had done was evil in the sight of the Lord” (2 Sam. 11:27).

    That brings us to another point: the heavy hand of discipline. David knew he had sinned. We usually do, deep down inside. But he tried to ignore it, tried to go on living as though nothing had happened. If his conscience got too heavy, he could always rationalize by saying things like, “I’m the king, I can do as I please. It was really Bathsheba’s fault, anyway. Besides, who am I hurting? Some men have to die in battle, why not Uriah?” The possibilities available to help us excuse our sin are endless. But there was something gnawing at David in the pit of his stomach, an emptiness he could not describe, accompanied by periods of extreme depression.

    He later wrote three psalms describing those months out of fellowship with God: Psalms 32, 38 and 51. Listen to his plaintive cry: “I am bent over and greatly bowed down; I go mourning all day long … I am benumbed and badly crushed; I groan because of the agitation of my heart” (Psa. 38:6, 8). David loved his Lord and tried to worship him, but he found a barrier there; it was the barrier of his own sin. God seemed far away. “Do not forsake me, O Lord; O my God, do not be far from me!” (Psa. 38:21). His friends sensed his irritability and avoided him. “My loved ones and my friends stand aloof from my plague; and my kinsmen stand afar off” (Psa. 38:11). David lived that way for nearly a year. He had his precious Bathsheba, but he had no rest of soul.

    Then one day God sent the prophet Nathan to David with a very interesting story. “There were two men in one city, the one rich and the other poor. The rich man had a great many flocks and herds. But the poor man had nothing except one little ewe lamb which he bought and nourished, and it grew up together with him and his children. It would eat of his bread and drink of his cup and lie in his bosom, and was like a daughter to him. Now a traveler came to the rich man, and he was unwilling to take from his own flock or his own herd, to prepare for the wayfarer who had come to him; rather he took the poor man’s ewe lamb and prepared it for the man who had come to him” (2 Sam. 12:1-4). When David heard the story he was furious at the rich man’s selfish insensitivity and insisted that he deserved to die.

    Guilt does that to us. We usually lash out most harshly and severely at the sins of others when we have the most to hide ourselves. Our subconscious anger with ourselves erupts against them.

    It was with fear and trembling that Nathan uttered his next words. Other men had lost their heads for saying less than this to kings, but he was bound by his calling to deliver the message of God to the erring king. He pointed his convicting finger at David and said, “You are the man!” Then he delivered God’s personal message to David: “It is I who anointed you king over Israel and it is I who delivered you from the hand of Saul. I also gave you your master’s house, and your master’s wives into your care, and I gave you the house of Israel and Judah; and if that had been too little, I would have added to you many more things like these! Why have you despised the word of the Lord by doing evil in His sight? You have struck down Uriah the Hittite with the sword, have taken his wife to be your wife, and have killed him with the sword of the sons of Ammon” (2 Sam. 12:7-9). And the conviction of God’s Spirit penetrated the depths of David’s soul.

    Sin usually brings unhappy consequences, and God does not always see fit to eliminate them. He knows that experiencing the effects of our sin will help us become more sensitive to His will. The consequences of David’s sin would be far-reaching and long-lasting. First, the sword would never depart from his house (2 Sam. 12:10). The people in the palace knew what was going on. They could count the months, and they realized that Uriah was not at home when the baby was conceived. It had to be David’s child. Then they thought about Uriah’s death, and the whole thing was much too coincidental. David’s son Absalom knew it. And when he killed his half-brother Amnon for raping his sister (2 Sam. 13:28), he probably justified his actions by thinking, “Dad did it. Why can’t I?” Captain Joab knew it. He was the one who carried out David’s sinister command concerning Uriah. And he probably used it to excuse himself when he murdered Absalom (2 Sam. 18:14), and later Absalom’s captain, Amasa (2 Sam. 20:9, 10). The sword never did depart from David’s house. Our sin affects those closest to us most of all.

    The second consequence of David’s sin was that the Lord would raise up evil against him out of his own house (2 Sam. 12:11). Read the story of David’s life and see the fulfillment of this promise for yourself: Amnon’s rape of Tamar, Absalom’s murder of Amnon, Absalom’s rebellion against David, Adonijah’s attempt to seize the throne when David was old. There was certainly evil in David’s house.

    Third, David’s wives would be taken before his eyes and given to someone else who would be with them in broad daylight (2 Sam. 12:11). David took another man’s wife secretly; now his own wives would be taken publicly. During Absalom’s rebellion, his followers pitched a tent on the palace roof, and Absalom had relations with his father’s concubines in the sight of all Israel, fulfilling this prediction (2 Sam. 16:22).

    Fourth, the child born of David’s illicit union with Bathsheba would die (2 Sam. 12:14). That baby would give the enemies of God cause to blaspheme, so God graciously took the child home to Himself. We grieve with David for the loss of his son, but we are grateful for this assurance of what happens to babies when they die. David says he will go to be with the child, assuring us that babies enter the presence of God (2 Sam. 12:23).

    Did you notice why God took the baby, however? That point needs to be reemphasized. It was because by David’s deed he had “given occasion to the enemies of the Lord to blaspheme.” Now we understand one important reason for divine discipline. It is administered so the enemies of God will know that He is infinitely holy and righteous, that He will deal with sin even in His children. Were He to wink at it with a “Boys will be boys” attitude, he would become the laughingstock of the unbelieving world. David had to bear the consequences of his sin, and so must we. That burden can be heavy, but the time to think about that is before we yield.
    .....


    http://bible.org/seriespage/caught-tempter’s-trap—i-story-david-and-bathshebai
     
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