The debate on women’s roles often goes on without a careful look at what the Bible actually says. Mary J. Evans seeks to fill this gap by surveying all the relevant Old and New Testament texts. In her treatment of the Biblical texts, she presents all the major options and deduces a reasonable conclusion, presenting her position clearly but not dogmatically. She also supplies helpful information on the cultural and religious influences affecting the New Testament church. In the light of the biblical evidence she asks us to re-examine our current attitudes and practices. The church today cannot afford to ignore her findings.
The strengths of this book make it the fairest introduction to the issue (even if one disagrees with Evans’ position) and a good contribution to the literature.
—Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society
What is a woman’s place at home, in the church and in society? Are there roles which should or should not be permitted? Woman in the Bible is a comprehensive and fair survey of the Biblical passages that deal significantly with women.
“Thus we see that even derivation is not a strong argument for subordination. It is wrong to say that woman owes all her existence to man, just as it would be wrong to say that man owes all his existence to dust and is therefore subordinate to it.” (Pages 15–16)
“‘Man has no part in making woman … he is neither participant nor spectator, nor consultant at her birth. Like man, woman owes her life solely to God, For both of them, the origin of life is a divine mystery.’” (Page 15)
“Jesus healed women, he allowed them to touch him and to follow him; he spoke without restraint of women, to women and with women. He related to women primarily as human beings rather than as sexual beings, that is, he was interested in them as persons, seeing their sex as an integral part but by no means the totality of their personality.” (Page 44)
“Jesus treats women as human beings and as such, as having value. It is not so much that he raises women to the level of men, for he does not appear to view people as being on levels; rather he sees both men and women as persons, as responsible individuals, with individual needs, individual failings and individual gifts. Jesus gives very little teaching on women as such, because he never treats them as a class, all with the same characteristics and tendencies. In a similar way he gives very little teaching for or about males as a class.” (Page 56)
“Jesus, in contrast to the Rabbis, completely dismisses the suggestion that lust is inevitable. He does not warn his followers against looking at a woman, but against doing so with lust. Women are to be recognised as subjects in their own right, as fellow human beings, fellow disciples, and not just the objects of men’s desire.” (Page 45)
The best book in support of women in ministry written from an evangelical perspective with a commitment to careful exegesis.
—David M. Scholer, Professor of New Testament and Dean, Northern Baptist Theological Seminary
Comprehensive… fair… aware of the major literature.
—Walter Liefeld, Professor of New Testament, Trinity Evangelical Divinity
A helpful overview of all the crucial passages with a careful and thorough evangelical scholarship.
—Roberta Hestenes, Associate Professor and Director of Christian Formation and Discipleship, Fuller Theological Seminary