Zipporah (means little bird) was the Midianite wife of Moses and daughter of Jethro. After 40 years of life in Midian with Zipporah's family, Moses received a message from God that it was time to return to Egypt to free His people. Along the journey, God came to Moses and sought to kill him. Zipporah took a sharp piece of flint and circumcised her son, casting the boy's foreskin down before Moses. The Lord spared Moses' life. Zipporah proclaims to Moses, "You are my bridegroom because of bloodshed." She saved her husband's life by the bloodshed of her own child. (Exodus 4)
Tabitha (or Dorcas in Greek) was a disciple of Jesus from Joppa. She was always doing good, helping the poor and widows, and making clothing and robes for them. She became very ill and the sickness took her life. Her friends had gathered to prepare her body for burial in her home, and the disciples sent for Peter, who was in the nearby town of Lydda. Peter came to Tabitha's home, and the widows were all gathered there, mourning and showing Peter the clothing and robes that Tabitha had made with them. Peter sent everyone out of the room and knelt in prayer. Then he turned to the dead woman and said "Tabitha, get up." She opened her eyes and sat up. Peter helped her up and presented her to the believers gathered. Word spread about this miracle, and many people believed in the Lord. (Acts 9:36-42)
Lady Wisdom (Sophia in Greek) is wisdom personified as a woman in the book of Proverbs. There are a multitude of passages describing her value. She shouts in the streets and cries out in the public square. She rescues from immortality. She guards and protects those who love her. She is sweet to the soul and is worth more than gold. There are endless benefits if we cling to wisdom, and she is more precious than rubies.
Shiphrah was one of the two lead Hebrew midwives during the Israelites’ captivity in Egypt. The Pharaoh commanded these midwives to kill all firstborn male children of the Israelite mothers giving birth.
The midwives feared God more than Pharaoh and refused to kill the babies.
When Pharaoh summoned them and asked why they let the boys live, they lied and said “Hebrew women are not like Egyptian women; they are vigorous and give birth before the midwives arrive.” God was kind to the midwives because of their faithfulness to Him and gave them families of their own. (Exodus 1:15-21)
Sheerah was a builder spoken of in the genealogies of 1 Chronicles. She was a daughter or granddaughter of Ephraim, the son of Joseph. She built three cities, Lower and Upper Beth-Horon, as well as Uzzen-Sheerah. Although briefly mentioned, Sheerah is noteworthy for several reasons. Women were not often mentioned in genealogies, with few exceptions. It was also unusual in her time for a woman to be a builder of even one, let alone three cities. She must have been a woman of great courage, skill, and determination. (1 Chronicles 7:24)
Sarai (meaning "my princess") was the wife of Abraham and a woman of great beauty. She endured a long and difficult journey with her husband while remaining barren for many years. God changed her name to Sarah (meaning "princess" or "cheiftainness") as a promise that she would become a mother of nations. God told Abraham that Sarah would have a child when she was nearly 90 years old. This made Sarah laugh, but she soon discovered she was pregnant with Isaac, and became the matriarch of the nation of Israel. She was praised as a woman of extraordinary faith in Hebrews 11. Sarah lived to age 127 and is one of two women whose age is given in the Bible.(Genesis 11, 12, 16, 17)
When faced with the tragic loss of her husband to famine, Ruth of Moab chose to leave her family and all that was familiar to go to the land of her mother in law Naomi, who had also lost her husband and sons to the famine. Ruth courageously stepped out of the familiar and into the unknown to adopt Naomi's God and people. Upon their arrival in Bethlehem, Ruth broke many cultural codes and expectations to help provide for and redeem the honor of Naomi. Ruth was one of the women in the bloodline of Jesus.(Book of Ruth)
She is known to many as a prostitute, a harlot, or an innkeeper in the ancient city of Jericho. Rahab was an unmarried woman who had grown up in a pagan Canaanite culture. She had grown up hearing the stories of all the miracles that the God of Israel had done to save his people. She knew these Israelites had a powerful God on their side. When Joshua sent spies to scope out the city, she welcomed them to her home, which was in the city wall. She provided a hiding place for the men under some flax on her roof. When the king's men came searching for the Israelite spies, she lied and said she didn't know where they went. She asked the spies to be kind to her and her family and spare their lives. They promised they would not harm her or her family as long as she hung a scarlet cord from her window and kept her family inside her home. She let the men down on a rope and advised them to hide in the hills. A few days later, upon the crumbling of the city of Jericho, the spies kept their word and went in to rescue Rahab and her family. They were brought to live among the Israelite people, where Rahab dwelled the remainder of her life. She is commended for her faith and righteousness in the books of Hebrews and James and is one of the women in the lineage of Jesus. (Joshua 2, 6)
Puah was the second head Hebrew midwife mentioned in Exodus.
During the Israelites’ captivity in Egypt, Pharaoh commanded the midwives to kill all firstborn male children of the Israelite mothers giving birth. The midwives feared God more than Pharaoh and refused to kill the babies. When Pharaoh summoned them and asked why they let the boys live, they lied and said “Hebrew women are not like Egyptian women; they are vigorous and give birth before the midwives arrive.” God was kind to the midwives because of their faithfulness to Him and gave them families of their own. (Exodus 1:15-21)
Priscilla, or Prisca--her proper name, is spoken of on six different occasions in the New Testament. Most likely of aristocratic Roman origin, she and her husband Aquila were dear friends and fellow tentmakers with Paul. Priscilla and Aquila travelled with Paul to Ephesus and established a church in their home there, where Paul resided with them for two years. An eloquent Jewish scholar named Apollo came to Ephesus and spoke in the synagogue. When Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they saw that he was lacking portions of the gospel and took him aside to explain more fully to him the gospel of Jesus. Priscilla and Aquila returned to Rome to continue in ministry. Preceding his death, Paul writes a letter saying farewell to his beloved friends, Priscilla at the top of the list. In five of the six times she is mentioned, Priscilla's name is given before her husband's. This is unusual because traditionally, the husband's name would be mentioned first. We don't know why; possibly because she had a more active role in ministry, a stronger personality, or a more noble social standing than her husband. Whatever the case, this couple is inseparable in working side by side in trade and in the church. Priscilla is thought by some scholars to be the author of the anonymously written book of Hebrews. (Acts 18, Romans 16, 1 Corinthians 16, 2 Timothy 4)
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