Women of the Old Testament (Hardcover)

by Camille Fronk Olson, Elspeth Young (Illustrator)

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“Women were not invisible in those ancient days; it is time to bring them out of the shadows today.” — Camille Fronk Olson

From the beginning, women have been at the very heart of God’s plan. Women of the Old Testament focuses on some of these remarkable women whose struggles and life situations are not unlike our own. No two are the same. Some are affluent; others live in poverty. Most are married, but some are single. Some are born in the lineage of the prophets, and others come from the cultures of the world. Some have children; others do not. Some make their contributions from within a loving and supportive marriage. Others bring about much good while being married to an absent, abusive, or unfaithful husband. All of them have challenges, but each one has a divine potential to contribute to the Lord's work.

Bestselling author Camille Fronk Olson brings these women to life, going beyond the traditional scripture story to provide insights that are amazingly relevant today. Elspeth Young’s exquisite, full-color illustrations also reveal something about each woman’s life and the customs associated with her culture. A “Points to Ponder” section at the end of each chapter offers thoughtful questions to consider individually or in a discussion group.

Product Details

  • Pages:  320
  • Size:  8" x 10"
  • Published:  2009

About the Authors

CAMILLE FRONK OLSON, professor of ancient scripture, serves as chair of the Department of Ancient Scripture at Brigham Young University. She earned an MA in Ancient Near Eastern Studies and a PhD in the sociology of the Middle East from BYU. Formerly dean of students at LDS Business College, she has served on the Young Women General Board and on the Church’s Teacher Development Curriculum Committee. She is a popular speaker and writer whose published books include Women of the Old Testament; In the Hands of the Potter; Mary, Martha and Me; and Too Much to Carry Alone. She and her husband, Paul, reside in Provo, Utah.

Elspeth Young received a bachelor’s degree in Fine Art from Brigham Young University. During her studies there, Camille Olson, a professor of Ancient Scripture, inspired Elspeth to begin painting lesser-known women of the Bible and mentored Elspeth’s research. Upon graduation from BYU in 2003, Elspeth began working full-time as a studio artist, photographer, writer, composer/arranger, and graphic artist. Elspeth concentrated her painting primarily in the area of religious art, which is where she finds her greatest fulfillment. She is currently collaborating with her father, artist Al Young, on a series of images featuring heroes of the Book of Mormon, and has begun work on a series featuring latter-day women of faith.

Eve

“Life Giver”

As “the mother of all living,” Eve is connected to each of us (Genesis 3:20; Moses 4:26). Her use of reasoning and agency initiated life in a fallen world where her children would encounter pain, sorrow, and joy beyond anything she and Adam could imagine in the Garden of Eden. Although divinely designated to be a heroine and role model for her daughters, Eve is one of the most misunderstood and criticized women in history.

Appreciation for our first mother’s virtue and purpose shapes our consideration of other women in scripture, and our interpretation of Eve’s role in the Fall likely influences the manner in which we regard women in general. For example, if we scorn mother Eve as the cause of the world’s woes and the loss of paradise for humankind, we are apt to see women as weak, incapable, overly emotional, reactive, vulnerable, and less intelligent than men. If, however, we consider Eve’s decision in the Garden of Eden as courageous and faith-driven and the results of that decision to be conducive to God’s plan, we are more likely to recognize intelligence, strength, rational thinking, and great ability in women in general. With cultural and gender biases and blinders removed, we can value “our glorious Mother Eve” (D&C 138:39) as an effective precedent to studying other women in scripture and seeing more clearly their respective challenges, contributions, and interactions with others.

Archaeological, historical, and geographical backgrounds do not provide access to Eve’s world as they do for later women in the Bible, but a careful study of scripture does. Unfortunately, centuries of Christian and Jewish interpretations and traditions have frequently colored our perceptions of Eve far more than the scriptures have done. Rather than relying on tradition or paraphrasing lessons from Eden, we should give close attention to the scriptural narrative, which reinforces God’s love and divine attributes accorded His daughters and His sons. Neither sons nor daughters are blessed less than the other. Hebrew word meanings and the book of Moses, which is the first portion of the Joseph Smith Translation of the Genesis narrative, are especially helpful in exploring a positive and consistent understanding of Eve and her contributions.

Created in God’s Likeness
The equal significance to God of man and woman is apparent from the Creation. The word adam in Hebrew is a generic term referring to all of humankind, implying those created from the earth. God created “man,” that is, “male and female,” in His own image and declared them both “very good” (Genesis 1:26–27, 31; Moses 2:26–27, 31). A reference in the book of Moses supports the Hebrew meaning: “In the image of [God’s] own body, male and female, created he them, and blessed them, and called their name Adam, in the day when they were created” (Moses 6:8–9; emphasis added). Awareness of this meaning of the Hebrew word helps us to remember our first parents every time we speak of humankind or mankind. Furthermore, as descendants of Adam and Eve, each of us is created in the image of God’s body with the capacity to develop Christlike attributes. Each of us carries a continual reminder of our divine heritage in our countenances and honorable desires.

Indicating another shared characteristic of those created in His image, God gave “them” dominion over all living things (Genesis 1:26, 28; Moses 2:26, 28). In this scriptural passage, “them” specifically refers to men and women. Given the responsibility to be stewards over God’s other creations, all children of Adam and Eve are to use and care for His creations, remembering that they ultimately belong to God. Nowhere in scripture is man given dominion over woman, nor is woman given dominion over man.

Woman as a Help Meet for Man
The apostle Paul taught that “neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord” (1 Corinthians 11:11). From the beginning, God reinforced that truth with His initial appellation for Eve.

God referred to Eve as a “help meet” for Adam (Genesis 2:18; Moses 3:18), an expression that has suffered a variety of questionable translations, which are often uncomplimentary to Eve. For example, the expression has been incorrectly transliterated to helpmate, thus creating the false perception that God created woman to be subservient to man and important only as man’s assistant.

The morphological units that make up the Hebrew expression help meet, however, communicate a much richer meaning. The first word (‘ezer), translated “help,” implies not a subordinate but rather someone who has strength to do what another cannot do for himself. Hebrew scholar Donald W. Parry has argued that the woman’s unique strength, or “help,” is as a “life giver” or a “life force” (“Eve’s Role”). Therefore, Eve was blessed with tremendous power and strength to provide Adam with a life-giving power that typifies God’s help. This same Hebrew word, ‘ezer, translated “help,” appears numerous times in the Bible. The root is the basis for the name of the scribe Ezra and frequently appears in reference to God. For example, God is the One who rescues us in our distress (Psalm 70:5) or He has strength and power to save (Deuteronomy 33:7, 26, 29). In this way, women are types of Christ. It should come as no surprise that one of the stated purposes of the Relief Society is “to save souls” (History of the Church, 5:25).

The second word (kenegdo), translated “meet,” is a compound of three common words that collectively appear in this form only in the Eden account (Genesis 2:18, 20; Moses 3:18, 20). The root word within this compound is the middle word, kgd, which means “to be conspicuous” or “to be apparent.” The word is used in the noun form only in these two verses, allowing for such suggested meanings as “in front of, opposite, or counterpart.” In Jewish Midrashim, the word means “equal,” as in the well-known saying, “The study of Torah is equal (keneged) to all the other commandments” (Freedman, “Woman,” 57–58). The collective meaning of the term suggests that Eve was an appropriate and worthy partner for Adam. God’s description of marital companionship in Genesis 2 indicates no hierarchical dynamic between Adam and Eve.

The scriptural text gives further evidence that Adam and Eve were truly partners. Figuratively speaking, Eve was created from Adam’s rib, not his head or his foot (the Hebrew word translated “rib” literally means “side”). The imagery of the rib, or side, symbolizes that man and woman are made of the same substance and are to exist together, side by side, not beneath or above. Furthermore, Eve was Adam’s wife; they were married in the Garden and cleaved to each other (Genesis 2:23–25; Moses 3:23–25).

Through latter-day revelation, we learn that God established the patriarchal order of the priesthood with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden after they were married and before their mortality commenced. This ideal form of governing is patterned after God’s government, which He, as our Father, operates through families here on earth. He established Adam and Eve as a family, sealed together for eternity, to have children and to perform His work throughout their mortality, as guided by the Holy Spirit. Today, this patriarchal priesthood is received in temples when a man and woman are sealed in eternal bonds of marriage.

In the patriarchal order, home is the center of the community, and religion is woven into the family’s daily life. Children are viewed as a divine gift, and parents are stewards for God in rearing their children to love and serve Him. Family, rather than the priesthood holder or the primary caregiver, is the foundation of the patriarchal order.

Satan Beguiled Eve
The Bible provides no introduction to Eve’s tempter, the serpent. The book of Moses, however, clarifies that Satan, “the father of all lies,” was the mind and voice behind the serpent and that his ultimate purpose in attempting to beguile Eve was to destroy the world (Moses 4:1–6). Moreover, the book of Moses reveals that Satan “knew not the mind of God” (Moses 4:6). Spiritual things can only be understood by the Spirit. Satan was bereft of spiritual companionship, of faith in God, and was therefore limited in his understanding of God’s plan, including the need for the Fall and a Redeemer. The scriptural text gives a sense that Satan falsely assumed that Eve would be foolish to partake of the Tree of Knowledge. His attempts to entice Adam and Eve to transgress the law suggest that he mistakenly supposed that God wanted Adam and Eve to forever remain in the Garden. The Savior and the prophets drew a connection between obedience to God and understanding His mysteries (John 7:17; Alma 12:9–10). President Ezra Taft Benson taught that no one can understand “why he needs Christ until he understands and accepts the doctrine of the Fall and its effect upon all mankind” (Ensign, May 1987, 85). The capacity of Satan’s mind is incomparably inferior to the omniscience of God and to those who are taught and led by the Holy Spirit.

With his restricted understanding, Satan tempted Eve with a question that presupposes more is always better and that a restriction from God means He is withholding valuable opportunities. Satan asked Eve why she could not “eat of every tree of the garden” (Genesis 3:1; Moses 4:7; emphasis added). Satan seemed to suggest that a loving God would certainly allow His children access to every experience. Does Satan use a similar tactic to lure us into sin? Does the same skewed philosophy lead us to suppose that God curtails our agency and the need to know whether something is good or evil when He forbids us from experiencing everything firsthand? In one of his favorite modes of temptation, Satan would have us think that God selfishly withholds blessings and power by not giving us unconditional access to every option at all times.

Satan, the father of lies, next implied that God is a liar by claiming that Adam and Eve would not die should they partake of the tree of knowledge of good and evil (Genesis 3:4; Moses 4:10). Satan scores a victory whenever we distrust God and His counsel. Others have successfully used Satan’s tactic by taking out of context something a believer has said, looking at the selected phrase from a different perspective than the speaker intended, and thereby encouraging his audience to question the believer’s integrity and God’s reality. Adam and Eve did not experience mortal death the instant they ate the fruit from the tree of knowledge; but after living in a fallen world where they had a probationary time to learn, repent, and grow outside God’s presence (called spiritual death), they did die physically (Alma 12:21–26). God is Truth—always (John 1:17; Ether 3:12; D&C 93:36).

How long this conversation lasted between Satan and Eve or how often it occurred before Eve acted is not known. The text simply states that Eve now saw the tree of knowledge “was good . . . and it became pleasant . . . and . . . to be desired” (Moses 4:12). The italicized word in the Genesis account, “it was pleasant,” communicates the translators’ suggestion for clarity. In the book of Moses, however, the verse reads “it became pleasant,” an equally valid proposition in the Hebrew, which implies the notion that Eve evolved in her realization that the tree was good. By placing the tree of knowledge in the center of the Garden with the warning “Thou shalt not eat of it, nevertheless, thou mayest choose for thyself, for it is given unto thee” (Moses 3:17; 4:9), God created an environment in which Adam and Eve were free to discover the only way they and their posterity could access the power of Christ’s Atonement and thereby reach their divine potential.

So Eve willingly ate from the tree. Exercising her budding agency, she acted, “[seeing] that the tree was good” (Genesis 3:6; Moses 4:12). She also offered the fruit to her husband, who likewise accepted it (Genesis 3:6; Moses 4:12). Adam and Eve’s choice to pursue the course of the fallen world enabled God’s plan for all of His children to proceed (2 Nephi 2:25). Nowhere in scripture did God punish Adam and Eve’s decision to leave the Garden. Moreover, He did not require them to repent after partaking of the tree of knowledge but, rather, announced, “Behold I have forgiven thee thy transgression in the Garden of Eden” (Moses 6:53).

Covering Their Nakedness
After choosing to eat from the tree of knowledge, Adam and Eve began to perceive what they had previously not been able to comprehend. The first new truth they recognized was that their bodies were not covered. Nakedness suggests being unclothed, unprotected, ashamed, and ill-equipped to succeed. Even more than what they saw in the present, the book of Moses relates that “they knew that they had been naked” (4:13; emphasis added), suggesting that they finally realized they had always been in a vulnerable condition. Only after eating the fruit from the tree of knowledge could they acknowledge their need for a covering. In truth, Christ’s perfect love is the only complete covering. The Hebrew word for “atonement” (kaphar) literally means “to cover” or “a covering.” The imagery evoked of the Savior’s sacrifice being symbolized by a covering indicates what could have been the first blessing of the Fall: awareness of the absolute need for a Redeemer.

Adam and Eve’s initial reaction to their exposed and helpless state was to use their own ingenuity to resolve their deficiency by making themselves a covering. When they heard God’s voice, however, they seemed to know instinctively that the aprons of fig leaves were not sufficient covering; they tried to find additional cover by “hid[ing] themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden” (Moses 4:14).

Their self-confident response to their helplessness may also apply to us. How often do we try to save ourselves through our own ingenious means, only to discover that our best ideas and efforts are pitifully inadequate? Among our greatest discoveries is the personal realization that we need Jesus Christ as more than a Friend, Teacher, or Confidant. We need Him as our Savior and Redeemer—always.

Not surprisingly, the Lord God did not send Adam and Eve out of the Garden uncovered. He provided them clothing made from animal skins, a covering that requires the sacrifice of life (Genesis 3:21; Moses 4:27). Truly a life was sacrificed to provide the only sufficient covering for Adam and Eve. Being clothed in such a reminder of the Sacrifice of the Only Begotten, literally encircled in the love of God, Adam and Eve were blessed with the knowledge that they alone could not protect themselves in their vulnerable condition in a fallen world. They would need to live by faith in the Redeemer. Whether in the days when Christ lived in mortality, in the centuries since His resurrection, or in the Old Testament era extending back to Eve and Adam, the Savior’s Atonement and His gospel are timeless and efficacious for all. Furthermore, because both Adam and Eve were covered by the Lord’s enabling power, all men and all women can be similarly clothed by His infinite grace.

What happened to the garment in which the Lord covered Adam and Eve? No further specific mention of it is made in scripture, but many curious parallels emerge. Noah’s sons recognized the seriousness of their father being uncovered on one occasion (Genesis 9:20–23). Joseph was given a coat that his brothers envied (Genesis 37:3–4). Elijah and John the Baptist also wore animal skins (2 Kings 2:8; Matthew 3:4). If the garment indeed represented authority and divine protection, as indicated in the Nag Hammadi texts (Robinson, Nag Hammadi Library, Gospel of Philip, 57; Mead, Pistis Sophia 1:9–10), knowledge of it would have understandably compelled others to secure it for themselves.

Reporting that the garment contained powerful properties that made the bearer invincible, Jewish Midrashim include tales of Adam passing the garment to Enoch, who bequeathed it to Methuselah, who in turn gave it to Noah. According to these Jewish traditions, Ham stole the same garment from his father and passed it down to his descendants. The various traditions do not agree on what happened to the garment after Nimrod possessed it; one legend suggests it was recovered by Shem or Melchizedek, who gave it to Abraham (Ginzberg, Legends, 1:177, 332; see also Tvedtnes, “Priestly Clothing”; Ricks, “Garment”).

Did God’s prophets wear similar garments as a symbol of their discipleship? The Bible contains clues to suggest that they did. In Old Testament times, a true prophet cautioned that evil men were wearing “a rough garment to deceive” (Zechariah 13:4). During His mortal ministry, Christ also warned “of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves” (Matthew 7:15). Do some or all of these passages refer to the covering given to Adam and Eve as they left the Garden? At the very least, they can each remind us that nothing but the Atonement of Jesus Christ can truly cover us.

Curses and Blessings
The consequences that God pronounced after Adam and Eve’s transgression underscore our knowledge that He had always intended them to leave the Garden. Everything He does is “for the benefit of the world” (2 Nephi 26:24). A careful reading of the text shows that two things were cursed, and neither one was Adam or Eve. God cursed the serpent and the ground—and He specifically cursed the ground “for [Adam’s] sake” (Genesis 3:14, 17; Moses 4:20, 23).

In contrast to His cursing the ground and the serpent, God strengthened and empowered Adam and Eve. Because of their transgression in the Garden, Eve and Adam received from God opportunities for growth, not punishments. God bestowed a blessing of natural aversion, or “enmity,” between Satan and the woman and between Satan and “her seed” (Genesis 3:15; Moses 4:21). Instinctively, the woman and her seed would be warned of evil. Discerning evil is a divinely bestowed blessing on all of Eve’s children but is even more poignant when first applied to Jesus Christ, the only child born to a mortal woman rather than to a mortal man and woman. Only the Son of Mary had the wisdom and power to crush Satan’s work of evil and then to rescue us. The apostle Paul explained that because of the Savior’s grace and victory over sin and death, the “God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet” (Romans 16:20). Adam and Eve, and their children through all subsequent generations, are blessed by the Seed of the woman as a result of the Fall.

God further rewarded Adam and Eve with recurring difficulties, hard work, and a strengthened partnership in the future. Appreciating the Hebrew meaning for words in God’s response to Eve reinforces our understanding of His intent to bless her. He told her that He would “greatly multiply thy sorrow” (Genesis 3:16; Moses 4:22). The Hebrew word translated “sorrow” does not imply feeling sorry over something; it means pain or hurt. Furthermore, “multiply” in this passage means repetition or something happening over and over again, not something being added to or increased. Therefore, God promised Eve that life in the fallen world would require her to do painful things over and over again. He also told her, “I will greatly multiply . . . thy conception. In sorrow thou shalt bring forth children” (Genesis 3:16; Moses 4:22), meaning that she would repeatedly experience pain associated with bearing and rearing each of her children.

As a type of Christ, Eve was a “help” (‘ezer) and magnified the supernal gift of life, provided only through the grace and merits of Jesus Christ, when she and her daughters gave mortal life to all of God’s children who come to earth. Professor Parry observed that it was not until after Adam and Eve were expelled from Eden that Eve’s role of life giver was intensified because they were cut off from the life-giving tree (“Eve’s Role”). In other words, only when God removed access to the tree of life did Eve’s important role as life-giver become apparent.

Adam was also obligated to work hard, “by the sweat of [his] face,” to produce food from the thorn-infested ground. Adam and Eve would produce life with sweat, pain, and boundless joy. Neither would have an easier life than the other.

Most great inventions, literature, and other contributions in this world are born of working hard and surmounting difficulties. No satisfaction compares with achieving results after enduring challenging times. Childbirth, rearing children, and eking out nourishment from the barren ground require prolonged commitment and times of discomfort. The results, however, are often miraculous—with the repeated acknowledgment that growth is possible only with God.

God also blessed Eve that “thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee” (Genesis 3:16; Moses 4:22). Although blessed with equal power (kenegdo), Adam and Eve complemented each other with their diversity. God gave each of them different gifts, challenges, and weaknesses (Ether 12:27). Such diversity reminded them that neither was enough alone. Just because some marriages since Adam and Eve’s union have not reflected this interdependency does not mean that God’s plan from the beginning is flawed. His teachings to our first parents underscore that man and woman need each other—and they need Him. His design is grounded in family and necessitated that Adam and Eve be united. By turning Eve’s desires toward her husband, God fostered an interdependent companionship in which the woman needs the man as much as the man needs the woman. In addition, their resultant partnership created a healthy environment to sustain and support her multiple conceptions.

God’s charge that Eve’s husband shall “rule over her” elicits questions in a world plagued by unrighteous dominion. Selfish interpretations of this statement have allowed countless men over the centuries to justify debasing, humiliating, and abusing women. This consequence of partaking of the tree of knowledge may therefore say more about Adam’s responsibility than any intended punishment for Eve. God assigned high standards for Adam and his sons in their responsibility to lead. President Gordon B. Hinckley interpreted the word rule to mean “that the husband shall have a governing responsibility to provide for, to protect, to strengthen and shield the wife” (Ensign, Nov. 1991, 99). With the wife’s desires turned to strengthen and support her husband, and his desires focused on protecting and strengthening his wife, we see a formula for mutual approbation and progression. Furthermore, Professor Parry has suggested that the Hebrew preposition marked by the letter bet in the word translated “over” in the phrase “rule over” is often translated “with” in the Hebrew Bible (“Eve’s Role”). Adam and Eve could rule together, in a partnership. Eve’s unique role in that partnership was a help. This fact sets Eve apart from all others except God Himself.

After the Garden
Adam and Eve’s equal yet complementary responsibilities are evident in their relationship and activities after their departure from the Garden. The book of Moses alone records these truths, providing us a glimpse of the partnership God inspired in our first parents.

Together Adam and Eve worked the soil (Moses 5:1), reared children (v. 2), prayed to God (v. 4), heard His response (v. 4), received His commandments concerning sacrifice (v. 5), and taught their children (v. 12). Never is it implied that Eve worked for her husband or against him or around

him or because of him. But Eve “did labor with him” (v. 1; emphasis added). Both Adam and Eve expressed joy at the consequences of their choice to leave the Garden, notwithstanding the hardships. The scriptures do not show that either of them communicated even a whisper of regret. Eve felt what Adam felt; she knew what he knew. Neither blamed the other.

True to his God-given assignment to “rule,” Adam’s prophetic witness to his family reflected his role as provider and protector. He said, “Blessed be the name of God, for because of my transgression my eyes are opened, and in this life I shall have joy, and again in the flesh I shall see God” (Moses 5:10; emphasis added). Adam spoke of his transgression and his future joy, signifying that he acknowledged his leadership responsibility among the families of the earth.

According to the next scriptural verse, Eve “heard all these things and was glad,” suggesting that she concurred with her husband’s testimony (Moses 5:11). Still united with her husband, Eve also bore witness of their blessed state after leaving the Garden. She declared, “Were it not for our transgression we never should have had seed, and never should have known good and evil, and the joy of our redemption, and the eternal life which God giveth unto all the obedient” (v. 11; emphasis added). In contrast to Adam’s speech in first-person singular, Eve spoke in first person plural, referring to their transgression, their children, and their redemption. Reflecting her divinely assigned desire to nurture, Eve spoke for her husband and children in her testimony. With an inclusive voice, she focused on the partnership between husband and wife and their joint responsibility to teach their children to love and obey their God.

Eve as Exemplar for All Women
Far from cursing Adam and Eve, God blessed them to be equal and complementary partners for each other. Each was initiated into mortality as an individual creation with an independent voice and a divine purpose to unite with each other and with God.

Elder Bruce R. McConkie wrote, “The Lord never sends apostles and prophets and righteous men to minister to his people without placing women of like spiritual stature at their sides.” Our first parents provided the pattern of partnership between husband and wife that happy and effective marriages in the future would follow. Elder McConkie continued, “Adam stands . . . to rule as a natural patriarch over all men of all ages, but he cannot rule alone; Eve, his wife, rules at his side, having like caliber and attainments to his own.” Elder McConkie observed that “in all dispensations and at all times when there are holy men there are also holy women. Neither stands alone before the Lord. The exaltation of the one is dependent upon that of the other” (Commentary, 3:302). An acceptance and appreciation for the mutual dependence that God designed to exist between man and woman is one of the most important purposes of the scriptural record. Adam and Eve’s example from the beginning ranks as a hallmark of marital partnership.

Clothed in Christ’s enabling power and obedient to His will, “our glorious Mother Eve” gave direction and purpose to all of “her faithful daughters” (D&C 138:39). In their unique way, in their own time, and amid their own challenges, other women whose stories are related in scripture show that the principles learned from Eve are timeless and just as essential today as in the beginning.

Points to Ponder: Applications for our Lives

  • Consider Satan’s insinuation that God is selfish and distrustful because He did not allow Adam and Eve to eat from every tree without consequences. In what ways do you see Satan still trying to tempt us to judge God as unloving when He gives us restrictions?
  • How has doing something that is hard been a blessing to you? Why would you choose to pursue a challenging school schedule when you could graduate with easy courses? After experiencing the pains of childbirth, why choose to have another child? What blessings come from forgiving someone who has seriously offended you? What do we learn from experiencing pain that we cannot learn if we avoid hard work?
  • How does your perception of Eve influence your view of women in general? How can it shape your hopes for your own potential?
  • What insights into successful marriages do you recognize by considering the meanings of “help meet” and the patriarchal order?
  • In your personal scripture study, look for other passages of scripture that imply a “covering” in ways that could symbolize Christ’s Atonement. For example, apply the concept to the Savior’s plea, “How -often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings” (Matthew 23:37; see also 3 Nephi 10:4–6; D&C 10:65).
  • Considering Eve’s God-given covering, how can righteous women and their families be spiritually clothed today? (see Proverbs 31:21–25).

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Outstanding!

by  Customer  -   reviewed on  October 21, 2009

Wonderful companion to my scripture study. Fascinating details relating to protocol, history, comparative scriptural references, and more.

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Excellent!

by  Jennifer  -   reviewed on  February 03, 2010

I took the class "Women in the Scripters" Margot Butler was my institute teacher. I read that this book was inspired by her class. The book is excellent. The class was excellent. I'm glad that somebody wrote a book about the women, it seems that sometimes they are in the background in the scripture, this book puts them to light. I loved it!

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Having a hard time putting it down.

by  Customer  -   reviewed on  November 08, 2009

I decided to buy this book when I first saw it because I knew it would be fabulous! Also thinking it would be a good reference book & could read it when I had time. Once I opened it I haven't been able to put it down. We're using this book for our book club this month sharing books (if needed) and each coming prepared to share what we've learned about a different woman in the Old Testament. We will have a wonderful discussion and each learn so much. I am almost finished and LOVE it!

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A Must Have Book for Women

by  Cindy  -   reviewed on  March 23, 2010

This is the most beautiful, inspirational, informative book on the subject! I have taught Old Testament in Seminary and Sunday School numerous times and have read everything I could get my hands on about the Old Testament, but this book has blown me away!! The paintings are, of course, worth every penny and more, but the book gives such great perspective on the women covered and the times they lived in. Sister Fronk has become my new favorite scriptorian!! Thank you!

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This book helped the poignant stories of the women in the Old Testament come alive, and reasserted the relevance of OT study.

by  Lisa  -   reviewed on  April 08, 2011

My mother loaned me the book, and I am never giving it back. I loved it! These beautiful stories help liken the women of the old testament to the individual struggles and experiences of women in our day. Even though these women lived anciently, their trials and testimonies remind us that we have more in common than we have differences, and that we can all gain when we learn to anchor our faith in our Savior. The written insight helps these women come alive, and the beautiful artwork is equally inspiring.

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Must read for anyone interested in the details of the old testament

by  juan  -   reviewed on  October 29, 2009

This is a great book which will enlighten everyone who reads it. The book would be best used as a study aid for individual scripture STUDY. I cannot recommend it more highly.

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Wonderful guide

by  Laena  -   reviewed on  January 24, 2010

My husband and I are studying the Old Testament together this year. The Old Testament has always been one of my least favorite volumes of scripture because so much of the traditions and aspects of the story are so foreign to me in comparison with life today. I've had particular trouble understanding the roles of women in Old Testament society. This book is changing all that. I just got it the other day and the explanations of the language, history, and anthropological significance behind the stories of these women shed so much light on the women of these stories, the respect that the men in the Bible had for them, and their favor in the sight of God. I have only read the parts about Eve, Rebecca & Hagar so far since I just got it, but I can't wait to read more.

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