As is shown in this book, the Bible is not simply a patriarchal book that only allows women to stand in the deep shadows of irrelevance and unimportance. This volume shines a spotlight on many women of stalwart faith in Scripture. Also included are chapters that focus on the darkness of depravity that is often manifested in the lives of women and men who live for self.
In these twenty-two studies Brownback focuses on women whom one would expect to be included: Eve, Sarah, Naomi, Mary, and Martha. However, other chapters discuss women like Dinah, Delilah, and Gomer whose relevance is often overlooked.
The studies are not meant to be biographical. Instead the author often centers on one aspect of each lady’s character. Writing with great insight and relevance, she opens up that character trait with much application to women of our day. A particularly interesting study to me was the manner of enticement a woman may consciously or unconsciously use to get her way. This fact is the subject of the study of Delilah. She is mindful of the fact that men have their mechanisms of enticement also. Other subjects that are wisely and insightfully discussed include boredom, the unloved, barrenness, and widowhood.
Each chapter begins with a modern scenario in which a woman may find herself. The reader is then taken to a woman in Scripture who faced a similar situation. Although the focus is on Biblical passages that center on the Bible character, other portions of the Bible are integrated into the study.
This volume is very useful for individual or group studies. Each chapter stands on its own; thus, the book can be profitably studied in any order one chooses.
The book is helpful for a number of reasons. It reminds the reader that God is greater than our problems and His grace is greater than our sins. Solutions to character traits that need correcting are found in Scripture. God’s Word also provides comfort for ongoing situations such as barrenness or widowhood. Readers (men and women) can come away challenged, convicted, and encouraged by being further grounded in Scripture and by being constantly pointed to the God of all comfort.
I trust this work will get a wide reading and the lessons gleaned from it will be rooted deep in readers’ lives today.
- Byron Snapp
Byron Snapp is a graduate of King College (B.A.) and Reformed Theological Seminary (M.Div.). He was Associate Pastor at Calvary Reformed Presbyterian Church, Hampton, Virginia, from 1994 until his retirement in December 2014. He is a native of Marion, Virginia. He has had pastorates in Leakesville, Mississippi, and Gaffney, South Carolina. He served as Assistant Pastor in Cedar Bluff, Virginia prior to his ministry at Calvary Reformed. He has served as editor of the Presbyterian Witness and was a contributor to A Comprehensive Faith and Election Day Sermons. He is currently a member of Westminster Presbytery in the PCA. He and his wife Janey have 3 children and several grandchildren.