Friday, March 18, 2011

Review: Women of the Bible: Illustrated Bible Handbook Series: A Visual Guide to Their Lives, Loves and Legacy

  • Authors:  Carol Smith, Ellyn Sanna and Rachael Phillips
  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Barbour Books (February 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1602606501
  • ISBN-13: 978-1602606500

Product Description


They didn’t get as much ink—but they contributed amazing things to the history of God’s people. Learn all about them in Women of the Bible, a brand-new, illustrated reference book from Barbour Publishing. Covering women’s roles and jobs, daily experiences, and interactions with Bible men, this book brings clarity to some of the strange, confusing, and forgotten stories of scripture. Also featuring lists of every named woman of scripture and most of the unnamed females, Women of the Bible is fully illustrated in color. It’s “readable reference,” equally helpful for study or pleasure. 

From the Back Cover

They didn’t get as much ink—
but the women of the Bible
contributed amazing things to human history.

This fully-illustrated reference brings the often mysterious world of Bible women into clearer focus for 21st century readers. How did these women survive—and move ahead—in their male-dominated societies? What issues did they have in common with women of today? Why was Jesus’ treatment of women so unusual for His time and culture?
                In clear, readable text, you’ll learn more about biblical women’s

    Roles and Jobs Daily Experiences Interactions with Men Relationships with Other Women Health and Beauty Concerns Childbearing, Marriage, Aging Issues, and More
    Complete with lists of all the named and most of the unnamed women of the Bible, this book provides insights into the achievements—both positive and negative—of females from the dawn of time to the first century of the Christian church. It’s a fascinating glimpse into a world very different from, yet in many ways similar to, ours today.

 My Review:

What a great biblical reference book.  The first chapter describes all facets of early Christian life. It is appropriately called Women in Bible Times.  There are plenty of relevant illustrations including many photos of works of art.  There is a discussion regarding global context of the events taking place in biblical times.  This book agrees with what I have always thought which is that Jesus' treatment of women was quite revolutionary at the time in that he had female students, he accepted women as friends and ministry supporters, and he ignored ritual impurity laws to help a woman of faith (p. 45).  It discusses the relationships between women, slave women and free women, sisters, mothers and daughters and plural wives.  The book explores the customs of the times.  One point that I really only understood recently which this book examines on page 72 is the importance of the cup of wine in the betrothal of a couple and how that is related to Jesus' utilization of the cup in the Last Supper and the bride as a symbol of the church (p. 76).  The twelve steps of an ancient Jewish marriage are listed which is very enlightening. And their is a fascinating discussion in regard to mourning and women's role in mourning.

Daily experiences in the bible are explored next, then women's jobs and roles.  Every point made in this book is supported by biblical passages.  Evil Old Testament Queens, everyday heroines, and mothers who made a difference, the women of the bible are divided into very interesting sections.   I like Nobodies: Unnamed Women of Faith and Action. Some women are symbolic women.  The women in Jesus' parables are discussed. 

The women of the bible and their interactions with men is discussed.  Beginning with the Garden of Eden to Christ's interactions with women, all of their interactions are discussed.  Their is a good depiction of the word submit when referring to women submitting to their husbands.

There is a glossary/index of the named women of the bible of which there are 166 listed.  There is also an index of the unnamed women of the bible.  There is a scripture index included at the end.

Great layout and easy to read.  I highly recommend this book and plan on ordering a copy for myself.

I received an ebook review copy through Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.

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