June 18, 2013
Courageous Women of the Bible
Unsung biblical heroes serve as models
HARRISONBURG, Va., and WATERLOO, Ont.—Midwives who stood up to Pharaoh. A wife who refused to dishonor herself. A woman who dared challenge the words of Jesus. Who were these women and how can they impact lives today?
Twelve sessions and one worship session profile 20 biblical women, some of them nameless. These include Hagar, who God helped to survive in the wilderness; Naomi, Orpah and Ruth on difficult choices; Shiphrah and Puah, who stood up to Pharaoh; Tirzah and her sisters, who fought the injustice of inheritance laws; Huldah, one of many women prophets of the Bible, whose work eventually led to discerning the canon of the Bible; Vashti, who refused to dishonor herself; Mary’s faith as mother of Jesus; Mary and Martha’s great example of friendship; Priscilla, a strong partner with Aquilla in the early church; the Syrophoencian woman who dared to challenge Jesus; the faith and courage of the unnamed woman with an incurable blood flow; and the Samaritan woman’s outspoken witness.
Each session includes a scripture text; suggestions for a visual to aid reflection and stimulate the senses; a “deepening” text to dig into the story; a series of questions integrating the story with personal and congregational experience; and closing suggestions.
Written by Linda Gehman Peachey in consultation with MW Canada and MW USA, the volume is the fifteenth in a series of Bible studies commissioned by the women’s groups, including studies on justice, self-care, family care, creation care, stewardship of money, and stewardship of gifts.
Gehman Peachey is a writer and editor in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, who has also written other booklets and Bible studies. She graduated from the Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary with a master of divinity degree in 2004 and was director of women’s advocacy at Mennonite Central Committee.