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Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Women in the Old Testament, 1

In case you haven't thought of it before, you read it here first. Women were apparently not considered to be as important as men in the culture of the patriarchs.
Why do I say that? Well, for one thing, Genesis 5 gives a genealogy, beginning with Adam, and going through Noah's sons. In all that list, no woman is listed, only men.
Here's another piece of evidence. Genesis 46 says there were 66 people who went with Jacob into Egypt, and lists them, but there is only one of Jacob's daughters, and one granddaughter, who are listed. It seems unlikely that all of Jacob’s descendants, save these two, were male, especially since verse 5 says that there were daughters and granddaughters, both plural. No wives are mentioned by name at all, except Rachel, Leah, Zilpah and Bilhah, who were the mothers of Jacob's twelve sons and one daughter, all four of whom were presumably dead by this time. (verse 5 says that Jacob's sons did take their wives.) So men are listed, but not women.

I expect to post more about this topic later. (Addendum, Jan 17, 2006: I now have done so, here.)

Addendum, Jan 26, 2007: There are now more posts about women in the Old Testament, including some about specific women. Click on the "Women of the bible" tag at the end of this post to see these.

The latest Christian Carnival (links to about sixty posts) is here.


Martin LaBar said...

A recent post, giving scriptural reasons why priests, or the equivalent, should not be ministers, is
. Neither of us knew of the other's post, and they aren't directly related. I may even deal with that thorny issue myself, but, if so, not yet.

Martin LaBar said...

Sorry for commenting on my own post, and twice at that. I respect the views of the individual I linked to in the previous comment, but disagree with his bottom line. (See not only the post, but comments on it, including his own.)
One symptom of that disagreement is that I belong to a denomination that has female ministers. Another symptom is that a relative is seriously considering entering the ministry of another denomination.
I linked to his post in fairness to a view on the role of women, from my own post, that is on an aspect of that subject, and because I'm an academic. I also linked to his post because there's a link in my post for the day that goes to the current Christian Carnival, where I found his post, and I wanted anyone who followed up on that to know that I had read the other post.
I may write on the subject of women in ministry myself, but I'm not ready to do so yet.
Christians can, and do, respectfully disagree about this matter.

April said...

I'm very interested on this. I know 1 Timothy 2:12 hits on this topic...and I'm curious to know more. Seeing as I have been offered a position at my home church as a campus ministries director. :D

Ashley Hepp said...

I''m familiar with this subject too

Anonymous said...

Good point, though sometimes it's hard to arrive to definite conclusions

Martin LaBar said...

That's true. Thanks, Anonymous.