Resources on Biblical Womanhood
I really began wrestling with this topic last year after I found out I was having a little girl. I was concerned by some of the views about women I saw that I knew were not Biblical, but I wasn’t sure what viewpoint I should have. I wanted to be able to teach my daughter what it truly means to be a woman of God, but to do so, I had to first understand it for myself. That is when I began to pray for the Lord to give me wisdom and understanding on this topic. As I prayed, I also got proactive and began researching and studying. I prayed for discernment as well because there are plenty of unbiblical sources out there. I didn’t want to go down a path that was taking me further from the Truth, but instead, I wanted input from multiple, Godly men and women who could help me grasp what Biblical womanhood really looks like. God definitely answered my prayers and is still doing so.
These are some of the resources I have found to be very helpful in understanding the role of women and how God sees women. These teachers are all believers who God has used in different ways, however, it does not mean I will agree with everything they say. I'm sure they would all disagree on some things, but I believe they all love the Lord and have sought Him for wisdom on what they teach. You fill find perspectives from laypeople, an apologist, and pastors and can learn something from each of them!
Aimee Byrd “No Little Women” (book)
This book has by far been my biggest source of wisdom on the topic of women. So many of the questions I was asking, Aimee addresses. She brings such a new and fresh perspective on the matter and I needed that so badly. Her book is full of Scripture references and footnotes to other resources. She has definitely done her research and has spent a lot of time studying.
The verse she bases her book off of is 2 Timothy 3:6-7 which says, “For among them are those who creep into households and capture weak women, burdened with sins and led astray by various passions, always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth.” Her whole goal in writing No Little Women is for “equipping all women in the household of God.” She challenges women to be diligent stewards of the Word and to be wise and discerning. She also challenges church leadership to evaluate their women’s ministries and their discipleship of women.
Byrd has been labeled a feminist and an egalitarian but she says herself that she is neither. However, she also says that she does not label herself as a complementarian because of the baggage that comes along with it. She does uphold the teaching of male authority in the church as well as the headship of husbands in the family. But, she questions some of the teachings taught in what I would call hyper-complementarian churches that reduce biblical womanhood to the issue of submission.
John McKinley’s “Necessary Allies - God as ezer, Woman as ezer” (lecture)
This lecture is incredibly insightful. He brings so many Scripture passages and examples from women in the Bible to strengthen his claims. It is $4 but I promise it is money well spent. I highly recommend reading this if you want more clarity on the term "helper" in the Bible. I will be pulling from this lecture in my blog post on this term.
This is one I have found recently so I haven’t been able to listen much, yet. But they have many episodes on biblical womanhood and they have actually had Aimee Byrd on about four times. They cover other topics as well, not just things pertaining to women. What I have listened to thus far has been excellent.
John Piper “What submission to your husband is not” (article/sermon)
This is an article I found helpful when trying to figure out what submission should look like on a daily basis. Sometimes an easier way to explain something is to explain what it is not. I think he covers many of the misconceptions about what it means for a wife to submit to her husband. It is also short and sweet.
Ravi Zacharias “Does God favor one gender?” (video)
Ravi Zacharias was one of my favorite people to listen to and due to modern technology, thankfully, he still is. He had a way of drawing people in and answering questions with such humility and compassion while also speaking the Truth.
In this video, he is answering a question from someone who is asking if God favors one gender over the other. He clearly communicates God’s view of women and talks about how Jesus treated women while here on the earth. In the last part of the video, he tells a story of the strength of his mother that is so beautiful and paints womanly strength in such an admirable light.
Ravi Zacharias “And the Two Shall Be…. Equal”
Here he deals with the issue of authority and submission. I love his answer and agree when he says “issues of headship and leadership only come when there is confusion about essence and responsibility before God.” He challenges men to lead with humility and says that the “man of God is a humble person first and is teachable.” That is such a powerful statement. Some view headship as exerting authority over the wife, making all of the decisions, and always having the final say. However, this is not loving the wife as Christ loved the church. Ravi speaks so highly of his wife and says, “The best compliment I can pay my wife is to let my children know that I love her the way Jesus loved the church.”
John MacArthur’s 4 part series on God’s High Calling for Women
If you are a lover of knowing context, you will love John MacArthur. There is really no one who preaches the way he does. He speaks God’s Word with authority and is unashamed. Some think he is arrogant, but that could not be further from the truth. He is unconcerned with inserting his opinion, but is very straight forward with what the text says. His style is very expository, which I appreciate. Never have I known anyone to have as much knowledge of Scripture as he does. During this series, he goes into a lot of context surrounding some difficult passages like 1 Timothy 2 and 1 Corinthians 14 and brings such a fresh perspective. I honestly don’t know how I ever thought I understood those passages before listening to him teach about what was going on in the culture then.
All of these teachers assert what Scripture says and do not try and explain anything away or make it more “culturally acceptable.” But, each one has a different way of communicating the truth and does so with clarity. Also, their applications may look slightly different, which is encouraging. Being concerned with the application of a truth more than the truth itself creates dogmatism and self-righteousness.
We should not be disciples of Aimee, John or Ravi, but disciples of Christ. That is why it is so important to have multiple, Godly influences and teachers so that we can be well-rounded and our views and opinions can be shaped by the Truth we are being taught, rather than by the teacher.