Bible themes & women
The status of women in the Bible
and in early Christianity
||"As regards the individual nature, woman is
defective and misbegotten, for the active power of the male seed tends to the production
of a perfect likeness in the masculine sex; while the production of a woman comes from
defect in the active power...." Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica,Q92, art. 1,
Reply Obj. 1.
"And a man will choose...any wickedness, but the wickedness
of a woman...Sin began with a woman and thanks to her we all
must die" Ecclesiasticus, 25:18, 19 & 33. 1
||"And I find more bitter than death the woman, whose heart is
snares and nets, and her hands as bands: whoso pleaseth God shall escape
from her; but the sinner shall be taken by her." Ecclesiastes 7:26,
from the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament)
The position of women within ancient Jewish and early Christian societies can logically
be discussed in three eras:
||During Old Testament times, when the roles of women were
||During Jesus' ministry, when he preached a revolutionary
message about gender roles;|
||After the execution of Jesus, (circa 30 CE), when the
developing church gradually reduced the status of its women members.|
To this, we have added a fourth essay, listing more recent views:
Ecclesiasticus (a.k.a. the Book of Sirach) is part of the
Apocrypha. It is considered part of the official canon of the Bible by the
Roman Catholic Church.
The Veritorium has a list of Bible verses pertaining to women at:
Call to Action, a Roman Catholic group, has an essay titled "Women in the
Bible and the Lectionary" at: http://www.cta-usa.org/
Susan C. Lau, "Bibliography on Women and Religion," at:
"Women in ancient Christianity: The new discoveries," PBS program,
"Men and Women of the Bible" at: http://users.aol.com/
"Sunshine for Women: Book Summaries," at:
"Christians for Biblical Equality" promotes the concept that the Bible
calls for gender equality. See: http://www.cbeinternational.org
the the status of women in ancient times:
You can order books dealing with the status of women in ancient times, from "amazon.com,"
the world's largest virtual bookstore. Just click on any of the books listed below. The
ordering process is simple. You can charge the purchase on your credit card using a
||Elaine Fantham, et. al., "Women in the
Classical World," Oxford University Press, New York NY (1994). "Written
by leading experts in the fields of ancient history and art history, women's studies, and
Greek and Roman literature, the book's chronological arrangement allows the changing roles
of women to unfold over a thousand year period, beginning in the eighth century B.C.E."
This book deals only with women in ancient Greece and Rome.
Tal Ilan, "Jewish Women
in Greco-Roman Palestine," Hendrickson Publishers, Inc., (1996)
||Heidi Parales, "Hidden Voices:
Biblical Women and Our Christian Heritage," Smyth & Helwys, (1998) She has a
web site at: www.geocities.com/
which describes the book and has a fascinating questionnaire about the role of women in the
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Copyright © 1997 to 2013 by Ontario Consultants on
Latest update: 2013-JUL-12
Author: B.A. Robinson