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Bible Insights

Gender Equality in the Bible

Many people criticize the Bible—and those who follow it—for making women subservient to men.

This is not a conclusion I reach when I read the Bible. I see the Bible—and those who truly follow it—as elevating the plight of women to the place they were created to be: equal to men.

Consider in Genesis where God says to Eve that Adam will rule over her. This is not God’s created order or a command. This is an outcome.

Adam and Eve disregard God’s way and decide to do things their way. As a result, they can no longer stay in the idyllic paradise he made for them; they have to leave. Because of their actions, life would be different.

One of the changes is that men would attempt to elevate themselves over women.

This was not God’s intent, but rather the result of human action.

In the beginning—in the first two chapters of the Bible—man and women are implicitly equal. That is how God creates them to be. Then man and women get greedy and want more; they mess up the order God intended.

Their actions change God’s balance and one of the outcomes is gender inequality and strife. It isn’t what God wanted, but it is what human beings got when they did things their way.

[Read through the Bible with us this year. Today’s reading is Genesis 3-5 and today’s post is on Genesis 3:16.]

Learn about other biblical women in Women of the Bible, available in e-book, paperback, hardcover, and audiobook.

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

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Christian Living

Beware of Reading the Bible Through the Lens of the World We Live In

We Distort Scripture If We Try to Adapt It to Fit Society’s Views

I write about the need to be careful when reading Scripture to not interpret it through the lens of our experiences, perspectives, and practices. When we do so it clouds our understanding. We must likewise be careful not to read the Bible through the lens of the world we live in.

The world’s perspective is not a biblical one. Society is anti-God and anti-faith in most every way.

We’re bombarded with their messages all day long through music, movies, and television. We’re assaulted by advertisements and social media. It comes to us at work and sometimes even at church.

If we don’t guard our thoughts and our attitudes against these negative influences, we run the risk of buying into their warped perspective that runs counter to what the Bible teaches.

And as we slide into accepting their distorted mindset, it affects the way we understand God’s word.

We begin to interpret passages differently. We begin to put a slant on God’s truth to better align with society’s misguided perspectives. And we begin to ignore passages that don’t align with their secular views.

Yet this is what happens when we try to read the Bible through the lens of the world.

We must stop.

God doesn’t change and neither does the truth he proclaims (Numbers 23:19 and Psalm 55:19). When it comes to his word—which we read in Scripture—it’s the same today as it was a generation ago, as it was a millennia ago, as it was when it was first written.

The Lens of the World Says to Accept Everyone

Scripture doesn’t talk about accepting everyone, regardless of their lifestyle.

Instead, it teaches that we are to love everyone. Jesus tells us to love one another (John 13:34-35). Another time he says we are to love our neighbors—that means everyone who is in need—as much as we love ourselves (Mark 12:28-33).

One way we love them is to tell them the truth—even if they’re not ready to hear it.

The Lens of the World Says Each Person Decides What’s Right and Wrong

The world maintains there is no such thing as absolute truth, that everything is relative. They insist that each person should decide for themselves what is right and what is wrong. But it’s not good when everyone does as they see fit.

It’s happened before and God intervened (Genesis 6:13). Then it happened again (Judges 17:6 and Judges 21:25) and repeatedly throughout the Old Testament.

The Lens of the World Says to Not Talk about Sin

The Bible teaches us what to do and what not to do. When we fall short of God’s expectation, it’s sin. We all sin and miss the mark (Romans 3:23).

But the world doesn’t want us to point this out. Talking about sin makes them uncomfortable. Yet they wouldn’t be uncomfortable if deep down in their hearts they didn’t know that what we say is true.

There is right and there is wrong, but they don’t want to hear it. They want to do what they want to do with no one telling them to stop.

We Need a Biblical Standard

Yet we dare not leave it to each person to decide what is right on their own. This is because one person’s right and wrong will inevitably conflict with another person’s right and wrong. Without a consensus on what is right or wrong, conflict ensues.

Without a moral ethic to guide us, society runs amok. People act with selfish intent. In the process they end up hurting one another.

Instead, we need a standard of what is right and what is wrong. God gives us this. It’s in the Bible. We’ve had it from the beginning.

All we need to do is believe what he teaches us and not attempt to filter it through the lens of the world, less we distort what Scripture says.

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

Bogged Down Reading the Bible?

10 Essential Bible Reading Tips, from Peter DeHaan

Get the Bible Reading Tip Sheet: “10 Tips to Turn Bible Reading from Drudgery to Delight.”

​Enter your info and receive the free Bible Reading Tip Sheet and be added to Peter’s email list.

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Christian Living

Beware the World’s Influences Overshadowing the Bible’s Truth

4 Ideals We Should Pursue to Stay True to Jesus

As followers of Jesus, we must take care to not let the influences of our world negate our understanding of our Savior and what he stands for. This must be an ongoing effort, because worldly ideas bombard us all day long and not God-honoring principles. And this directly opposes biblical truth.

If we’re not careful, these negative ideas will push biblical truth out and replace it with secular notions. I fear that many in Jesus’s church have unwillingly succumbed to making this error.

Here are four ideals we should pursue:

1. Do Not Be Politically Correct

Afraid they’ll offend others, these people have become politically correct, while pushing aside the idea of being biblically correct. Yet to be true to Jesus and his calling on our lives, we must adhere to biblical truth.

May biblical correctness be more important to us than political correctness. The Bible is the foundation of our faith. If we lose our foundation, we lose everything. And we’ll stand for nothing because we’ll cease to stand at all.

2. Do Not Conform to the World

Paul writes that we are to not conform to the world’s ways. Instead, we are to transform our mind by renewing it (Romans 12:2).

We best renew our mind when we seek God in the spiritual realm and immerse ourselves in biblical truth in the physical realm. The prescription to prevent conforming to the world starts with studying the Bible and progresses by listening to the Holy Spirit.

3. Do Not Love the World

John writes that we are to not love the world nor the things in the world (1 John 2:15). Yet it is easy to get sucked into this.

We live in a materialistic society that conditions us to crave more, to never be satisfied with what we have. This is the point of advertising: to make us want what we don’t have.

Instead, we should crave spiritual things to mature in our salvation, just as a baby craves milk so it can grow (1 Peter 2:2). May we excel in our faith and not worldly pursuits.

We must focus on what is of God and not what is of this world (Colossians 3:2).

4. Do Not Worry About Being Hated

Jesus says that the only way for the world to love us is if we belong to it. But we don’t belong to it. He has chosen us out of the world. When we follow Jesus, the world will hate us (John 15:18-19).

If the world hates us—criticizes, attacks, and diminishes us—it proves we’re rightly following Jesus. The counterpoint is that if the world doesn’t treat us this way, our faith and our witness for Jesus means nothing.

Though we all want to be loved, we should expect that when we truly follow Jesus, not everyone will love us. Some will oppose us.

John writes that we shouldn’t be surprised when the world hates us (1 John 3:13). Furthermore, the apostle instructs us to not love the world or anything in it. If we do, it shows that we don’t love Father God (1 John 2:15).

Conclusion: Do Not Be in the World

Though we are in the world, we are not of the world. If we lose sight of this distinction, our faith fails to hold meaning and our influence on the world diminishes.

In doing so, we’ll lose any positive impact we may have on the world; we’ll fail to point others to Jesus and advance his kingdom.

To not be in the world requires an ongoing, daily effort. We must guard what comes into our mind from the anti-God influences of society, lest it push out his truth.

Instead, we should think about whatever is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent, and praiseworthy (Philippians 4:8). And we find these ideals in Scripture. This biblical truth provides the unshakeable foundation for our faith.

To do so we must be careful about the shows and movies we watch, the songs we listen to, and the books we read. We must select our news sources with care, less they, too, lead us astray.

In similar fashion, we must choose our closest friends with care, in case they, too, pull us away from Jesus and biblical truth.

This doesn’t mean we should avoid contact with non-believers—that would be an overreach—but we must make sure that we influence them and not the other way around.

Jesus says we are a light unto the world (Matthew 5:14). When we fix our gaze on him—and not what the world offers—we can do just that.

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

Bogged Down Reading the Bible?

10 Essential Bible Reading Tips, from Peter DeHaan

Get the Bible Reading Tip Sheet: “10 Tips to Turn Bible Reading from Drudgery to Delight.”

​Enter your info and receive the free Bible Reading Tip Sheet and be added to Peter’s email list.

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Christian Living

Hear the Word of God

God Speaks to Us Through His Spoken Word and His Written Word

Growing up I was taught that the word of God was the Bible. This idea has been reinforced throughout my life by various ministers, books, and fellow followers of Jesus. This means that to hear the word of God is to listen as someone reads the Scriptures.

Yet perceiving the word of God as a euphemism for the Holy Bible may be an oversimplification. It might even be wrong. Though this may sound heretical, I offer biblical support.

The phrase word of God appears in thirty-nine verses in the Bible, as rendered by the NIV. Given the context, it can mean different things.

The Written Word of God

Yes, Scripture does use the phrase the word of God to refer to itself. We see this implied in a few places but not many (Matthew 15:6 and Mark 7:13).

Jesus Is the Word of God

Next, Jesus is the Word of God (Revelation 19:13), and he lives in us (1 John 2:14). Also the apostle John writes that Jesus is the word (John 1:1-14). The word of God is also used in Scripture as a euphemism for the good news about Jesus (consider Acts 4:31 and throughout the book of Acts, as well as 2 Corinthians 2:17 and Colossians 1:25, among others).

The Spoken Word of God

Throughout the Bible, God speaks directly to his people (consider 1 Kings 12:22, 1 Chronicles 17:3, and Luke 3:2, among many others). He does this through angels, dreams, and audibly (Luke 3:22).

When God speaks to us, we better listen it hear the word of God.

This is the spoken word of God. It comes to us through the Holy Spirit, albeit manifested in diverse ways: through dreams, visions, and implanting supernatural words in our minds. And, yes, it can be audible.

The Sword of the Spirit

When we read about the armor of God in Ephesians 6, it talks about the sword of the Spirit, which is the written word of God (Ephesians 6:17). Most people understand this to mean the Bible.

Yet when Paul wrote these words, the New Testament did not exist. At that point, the written word of God—that is, the Scriptures—consisted of the Old Testament and the Apocrypha.

A better understanding of “the sword of the Spirit” in this verse is that it refers to the spoken word of God as revealed to us by the Holy Spirit.

When the Almighty speaks to us—in whatever form—may we hear the word of God and obey.

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

Bogged Down Reading the Bible?

10 Essential Bible Reading Tips, from Peter DeHaan

Get the Bible Reading Tip Sheet: “10 Tips to Turn Bible Reading from Drudgery to Delight.”

​Enter your info and receive the free Bible Reading Tip Sheet and be added to Peter’s email list.

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Christian Living

What Does the Bible Mean When It Says, “All Scripture?”

The Whole Bible Can Teach Us about God and Instruct Us in His Ways

One verse I heard often at a particular church I attended was 2 Timothy 3:16. It says, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,” (KJV).

This verse was cited to remind us of the holiness and practical applicability of the Bible to inform our daily lives. According to this preacher, “all scripture” referred to the KJV, the only version he accepted.

However, let’s consider the phrase all scripture. When Paul wrote these words to Timothy, the New Testament didn’t exist. So Paul couldn’t have been referring to that text.

Yes, there were various portions of what later became the New Testament being circulated among the followers of Jesus, but they also shared other texts that didn’t make it into today’s Bible. Therefore, Paul couldn’t have meant for all scripture to encompass the New Testament.

From Paul’s perspective, when he said, all scripture, he envisioned the texts that were available to the Jewish people at that time. This would certainly include the Old Testament) and may have included other supporting religious documents).

The version of the Bible in use in Paul’s time was the Septuagint, a Greek translation of the Old Testament. The Septuagint included the thirty-nine books Protestants have in their Old Testament, but it also included more.

The Septuagint used during the lifetime of Jesus and Paul, also included the books we now call the Apocrypha. So these books of the Apocrypha would fall under Paul’s umbrella term of all scripture.

And for my preacher friend who insisted on reading the Bible in the KJV, I must point out that the original version of the KJV included the Apocrypha.

That’s something to think about.

If the Apocrypha is part of what Paul meant when he said, all scripture, then the Apocrypha is also “useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness.”

The Books of the Apocrypha Included in the Septuagint Are:

See why Christians Should Consider the Entire Bible.

When Paul writes that all scripture is profitable, I take him seriously. And I encourage you to as well.

[Read through the Bible with us this year. Today’s reading is 2 Timothy 1-4 and today’s post is on 2 Timothy 3:16.]

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

Bogged Down Reading the Bible?

10 Essential Bible Reading Tips, from Peter DeHaan

Get the Bible Reading Tip Sheet: “10 Tips to Turn Bible Reading from Drudgery to Delight.”

​Enter your info and receive the free Bible Reading Tip Sheet and be added to Peter’s email list.

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Christian Living

Meditating on God’s Word

Our Actions Are Birthed Through Our Thoughts

It’s essential to read the Bible, but beyond that we should also study Scripture. Even more important, however, is meditating on God’s Word. This is because when we meditate on what the Bible says, it changes what we think about, which affects what we do.

Read the Bible

As followers of Jesus, we learn more about him and how to be his disciples through Scripture. By reading the Bible we get a glimpse into the life of Jesus to see what he said and what he did. Then we can emulate his actions and obey his teachings to become more Christlike.

Study Scripture

Reading the Bible is a great start. I do it every day and encourage everyone to do with as well. Yet beyond reading God’s holy word is to examine it. We should study Scripture.

In the Old Testament we see Ezra devoting himself to studying the law, that is the Jewish Scripture—the Old Testament of the Bible—specifically the Torah, the first five books of the Bible (Ezra 7:10).

In the New Testament, Jesus commends the Jews for their diligent study of the scriptures, which testify about him (John 5:39). Today we have both the Old and New Testaments for us to read and study so we can learn more about Jesus—and about God.

Meditate on God’s Word

Studying scripture is a rewarding endeavor, but we must make sure we don’t do it to amass knowledge but to inform our understanding of God. Paul warns the church in Corinth to pursue love over knowledge, saying that knowledge puffs up (1 Corinthians 8:1).

Though the context of Paul’s instruction is about food sacrificed to idols, his warning to not allow ourselves to become proud over our knowledge is a warning we should all heed. We don’t want to take pride in our knowledge about the Bible, to become puffed up by what we know.

Instead, we should take the next step and meditate on it. We should hide God’s Word in our hearts (Psalm 119:11). We do this as we read, study, and meditate on the Bible.

Studying Scripture puts the Bible’s words in our minds; meditating on God’s Word puts it in our hearts. This is where it needs to be; this is where it must be if we are to apply what we read in the Bible to what we do and say.

Drive Our Actions

As we meditate on the Bible—as we hide God’s Word in our hearts—the desired outcome is that we won’t sin against God (Psalm 119:11). Though meditating on God’s Word won’t make us sinless, it will help us to sin less.

This is because what we put into our minds influences what comes out of our mouths and what our body does. Meditating on God’s Word changes what we think about, which affects what we do.

The old computer saying is GIGO—garbage in garbage out. What we enter into a computer is what we can expect to get out of it.

The same is true in our lives. If we fill our minds with junk—with the thoughts of the world, evil, and ideas contrary to the Word of God—that’s what we can expect our minds and our bodies to produce.

Yet if we fill our mind with the thoughts of God, by meditating on God’s Word, we can expect a positive and God-honoring result.

May it be so.

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

Bogged Down Reading the Bible?

10 Essential Bible Reading Tips, from Peter DeHaan

Get the Bible Reading Tip Sheet: “10 Tips to Turn Bible Reading from Drudgery to Delight.”

​Enter your info and receive the free Bible Reading Tip Sheet and be added to Peter’s email list.

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Christian Living

Jeremiah Issues 3 Warnings to Misleading Ministers

Beware of Slacking Shepherds, Godless Pastors, and Misleading Ministers

The prophet Jeremiah doesn’t just warn the people about judgment for their sins, he also warns their religious leaders too. The twenty-third chapter of the book of Jeremiah details three leadership failures. Most troublesome is the third item about misleading ministers.

Everyone in leadership should heed Jeremiah’s cautionary words and seek God’s help to avoid repeating these errors.

1. Slacking Shepherds

Jeremiah proclaims woe to the shepherds (a metaphor for religious leaders) because they fail to take care of the sheep (a metaphor for God’s people). The prophet gives three examples to demonstrate the shepherds’ failure.

First, they have scattered the sheep. Second, they have driven the lambs away. Third, they have neglected to care for their flock.

God pledges to punish these failed shepherds. Then he will replace them with good ones (Jeremiah 23:11-12).

2. Godless Pastors

Next, Jeremiah condemns godless prophets and priests. Imagine that. These men should represent God to his people, but they don’t. Even in the temple (the church building), God finds them full of wickedness.

He promises to banish them to the darkness, where they will fall. He proclaims disaster for them (Jeremiah 23:11-12).

3. Misleading Ministers

Jeremiah continues rebuking prophets who proclaim lies. They fill the people with false hope. These religious leaders don’t have the mind of God. They don’t hear what the Lord says. Instead, they make up things to tell the people (Jeremiah 23:16-17).

In short, they fail to speak God’s truth.

God’s punishment for these misleading ministers is that he will forget them and cast them from his presence (Jeremiah 23:39).

Today’s Preachers

This issue of misleading ministers happens today at too many churches, albeit with a modern twist. Preachers speak what the people want to hear and not what the Bible says. They avoid proclaiming the parts of God’s Word that may upset their congregation.

They water down the good news of Jesus by removing what may offend. Instead of speaking biblical truth, they substitute it with nice sounding messages of their own making that delights listeners, avoids confrontation, and minimizes conflict.

God wasn’t pleased in Jeremiah’s day by the leaders who did this. And he is not pleased today.

Our preachers today must listen to God and teach what he and his Word says. We don’t need any more slacking shepherds, godless pastors, or misleading ministers.

We need leaders who will speak God’s truth regardless of what the world thinks or how their congregation reacts.

[Read through the Bible with us this year. Today’s reading is Jeremiah 23-25 and today’s post is on Jeremiah 23:16-17.]

We need leaders who will speak God’s truth regardless of what the world thinks or how their congregation responds.

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

Bogged Down Reading the Bible?

10 Essential Bible Reading Tips, from Peter DeHaan

Get the Bible Reading Tip Sheet: “10 Tips to Turn Bible Reading from Drudgery to Delight.”

​Enter your info and receive the free Bible Reading Tip Sheet and be added to Peter’s email list.

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Bible Insights

The Bible Offers Us Hope for the Future

Because of God We Can Anticipate a Better Tomorrow

There are many reasons why I love the Bible, in fact I list thirteen. One of those reasons is hope. The Bible is filled with hope. It’s mentioned 180 times in both the Old and New Testaments.

Hope in the Old Testament

The word hope appears ninety-seven times in the Old Testament, in sixteen of the thirty-nine books. Interestingly, the word hope isn’t found in the first seven books of the Bible. Psalms, however, is filled with hope, thirty-four times (such as Psalm 9:18).

Job comes in second place with eighteen mentions (Job 13:15, for example). Much of the hope that appears in the Old Testament occurs in the writings of the prophets, who look forward in hopeful expectation to a better future (consider Isaiah 40:31).

Hope in the New Testament

Hope appears eighty-three times in the New Testament and pops up in twenty-four of the twenty-seven books (consider Romans 5:2). Interestingly, in the five books written by John—who writes extensively about love—hope only pops up once, in his gospel.

The final book of the Bible, Revelation, doesn’t mention hope directly. However, the book winds down looking at a glorious future with a new heaven and a new earth (Revelation 21:1). That’s something to hope for.

Hope in Our Present World

Some of the times hope is mentioned in the Bible, it anticipates a better tomorrow in our physical world: a hope for provision, a hope for deliverance, and a hope for protection, to name a few (check out Psalm 37:9).

When we place our trust in God, we can be filled with hope that he will take care of us throughout our life.

Hope in Our Future Reality

In other places when the Bible mentions hope, it’s a perspective that transcends our physical realm (such as Acts 23:6). It’s hope in a spiritual eternity with God. It’s the hope of heaven.

This anticipates an existence with no pain, sorrow, or disappointment. Some might call it paradise and others, Eden reborn. In this future reality, we will commune with God. We will worship him, serve him, and just hang out.

Some people follow God for the hope he gives them for a better tomorrow in this world. And that may be enough. Other people pursue God for the hope he gives them for a better tomorrow in the afterlife. And that is another reward.

The Bible is filled with hope, and it fills us with hope: hope in God for tomorrow and beyond.

[Read through the Bible with us this year. Today’s reading is Psalm 6-10, and today’s post is on Psalm 9:18.]

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

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Bible Insights

13 Reasons Why I Love the Bible

The Holy Scriptures Are So Much More than a Sacred Icon or Guidebook for Living

I revere the Bible. Every morning I reserve time to read its words and study its meaning. It informs who I am and reforms what I do. It exposes me to God and his ways. This is why I love the Bible.

Yes, I cherish the Bible. Here are thirteen reasons why I love it so much.

Why I Love the Bible

  1. Supplies Us with a Greater Authority
  2. Reveals God the Father to Us
  3. Points Us to Jesus
  4. Shows Us the Holy Spirit
  5. Reminds Us of Our Heritage
  6. Informs Our Understanding of God
  7. Provides Direction for Our Lives
  8. Teaches How to Live With One Another
  9. Offers Us Hope for the Future
  10. Unveils Rich Literature to Us
  11. Gives Us Daily Inspiration
  12. Presents Us with a Narrative to Inform Our Lives
  13. Uncovers the Spiritual Realm for Us

These are some of the reasons why I love the Bible.

Paul writes to Timothy that all parts of the Bible have value. It can teach us, rebuke us, correct us, and train us for right living. This prepares us to do good (2 Timothy 3:16-17).

[Read through the Bible with us this year. Today’s reading is 2 Timothy 1-4, and today’s post is on 2 Timothy 3:16-17.]

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

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Christian Living

How Can a Man Write about Women in the Bible?

We are One Through Jesus, Neither Male nor Female

When God prompted me to write about the women in the Bible, I was excited and began work on it immediately. Much of my life, it seems, had brought me to the place to explore the amazing women found throughout the pages of Scripture.

In short, God has given me a heart for women.

I want to celebrate who they are, encourage them, and make sure that no one ever treats them as less than simply because of their gender. Remember, God created us in his image, male and female (Genesis 1:27).

In a traditional sense, I am a feminist, wanting men and women to embrace—and treat—each other as equals. In this respect, I see Jesus as the first feminist. I’m also reminded that Paul said we are one in Christ, neither male or female (Galatians 3:28).

Yet I also knew some would question the suitability of a man writing a book about women in the Bible. I briefly considered asking my wife to take on some small aspect of the project so that I could list her as a co-author, and thereby defuse any gender bias.

I’m sure others have used this strategy in the past, but I didn’t feel right about it and didn’t want to do so for the sake of expediency.

I moved ahead with the project God called me to do, all while wondering how to respond to people who question me—as a guy—for having the audacity to do so.

With much joy in the process and aided by Holy Spirit inspiration I authored the book and published Women of the Bible in 2018. It covers 135 women in the Bible, with a list of seventy-four more for additional study.

Readers received the book well, and it remains my most popular one. It continues to sell better than any of my other books, which currently number over two dozen.

A Heart for Women

Even so, people will sometimes ask, “How can a man write about women in the Bible?” Though I could launch into a lengthy justification or attempt to discuss it from a theological perspective, I’ve chosen not to do so.

I simply tell my well-intentioned questioners, “I believe that God has given me a heart for women.”

Usually this allays their concerns, and they accept it. But if I suspect they need further explanation, I add one more line. I say, “I want to encourage both women and men to celebrate the women in the Bible.”

Yes, I want men to read Women of the Bible too. Sadly, I fear they’re more apt to do so with a male name on the front cover than a female. That’s on them. It’s not right, but it happens.

For my part, I’ll do whatever I can to change those misogynistic perspectives. After all, when it comes to God, gender doesn’t matter.

Men in the Bible

Interestingly, there’s another question that catches me off guard. I’ve heard it nearly as often as “How can a man write about women in the Bible?”

What is this inquiry? I’ve had multiple people ask me when I was going to write about the men in the Bible. I don’t think we need such a book, but if people keep asking me about it, I may just write it.

Besides, I’ve already written about many men—along with women—in my book The Friends and Foes of Jesus. And I’ll cover many more in my upcoming book Old Testament Saints and Sinners.

Learn about other biblical women in Women of the Bible, available in e-book, paperback, hardcover, and audiobook.

Read about more biblical characters in The Friends and Foes of Jesus, now available in e-book, paperback, and hardcover.

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.