For too long the women of the Bible have been depicted in one-dimensional terms. On one side are saints, such as Mary, while on the other are "bad girls," such as Eve and Jezebel. Just as often, the female characters of the Bible are simply ignored. However, the women of the Bible are complex, multidimensional individuals whose lives are inspiring, funny, and tragic in ways too many of us never hear.
In this first of two volumes, Lynn Japinga acquaints us with the women of the Old Testament. From flawed heroes like Ruth and Rahab to fierce fighters like Deborah and Jael to tragic characters like Jephthah's daughter and the unnamed concubine of the book of Judges, readers will encounter a wealth of foremothers in the faith in all their messy, yet redeemable, humanity. This Bible study introduces and retells every female character who contributes to one or more Old Testament stories, diving deeply into what each woman's story means for us today with questions for reflection and discussion.
Lynn Japinga is Professor of Religion at Hope College in Holland, Michigan. An ordained minister in the Reformed Church in America (RCA), she has served as a pastor and interim pastor of a number of RCA congregations. Japinga is the author of several books and articles, including Feminism and Christianity: An Essential Guide.