The virtuous woman

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Dear Young People,
Introducing the Virtuous Woman
Turn to Proverbs 31:10-31 and read it carefully.
This passage describes a woman of noble character. She was a loving wife and mother. She was also good at many things—managing her house, shopping, tailoring, and gardening. How many of you girls are being trained in skills that will help you manage your future home?

To us in the 21st century, it is striking that such a talented and intelligent woman is so devoted to her husband and is centered around her home. In today’s world, people may say that her talents are being wasted in the home. But the Bible, which is our guide teaches us that a woman’s first responsibility is towards her husband and home. At the same time the Bible does not teach that she is a servant in the family but rather the queen of the home.

An Exercise For You
You know that I Corinthians 13 is a chapter on LOVE and Hebrews 11 is a chapter on FAITH. So too, you must remember that Proverbs 31 is the chapter about the VIRTUOUS WOMAN. This woman teaches us many lessons about the dignity of the wife, her submissiveness to her husband, her influence on her husband, her courage, and so on. We cannot discuss all these things in this lesson. However, it will be useful to become familiar with the passage. To help you, here is a small exercise. You will have to match the truths in the first set with the verses in the second.

Truths

  1. Her noble nature was steadfast and not just for a few days 11, 12, 23, 28
  2. She found ways to bring income to the family even though she was a housewife 22, 25
  3. She did what she could to prepare for the future. After that, she was confident and fearless 12, 28
  4. She and her family were dressed well 13, 19, 22
  5. She was skillful with her hands 13
  6. Her speech is not argumentative, harsh, or foolish 28
  7. She brought honor to her husband and he appreciated it 21
  8. She cared for her children and they said so after they had grown up 13, 15, 27
  9. She was considerate to those who worked for her and to the poor 21, 22
  10. She worked willingly and not with grumbling 26
  11. She was strong and dignified. She took good care of herself. She also made special clothes for herself. 15, 20
  12. She worked long hours, willingly, and was not lazy 30
  13. She had the inner beauty of a God-fearing nature

Verses from Proverbs 31

  1. Prov 31:11, 12, 23, 28
  2. Prov 31:22, 25
  3. Prov 31:12, 28
  4. Prov 31:13, 19, 22
  5. Prov 31:13
  6. Prov 31:28
  7. Prov 31:21
  8. Prov 31:13, 15, 27
  9. Prov 31:21, 22
  10. Prov 31:26
  11. Prov 31:15, 20
  12. Prov 31:30
  13. Prov 31:14, 16, 18, 24

Inner Beauty
The passage in I Pet 3:1-6 is similar to Prov 31 in many ways. For instance, look at the following:

1 Pet 3:3-4 Do not let your adornment be merely outward– arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel—rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God.

Prov 31:30 Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing, but a woman who fears the LORD, she shall be praised.
These verses teach that godly girls should be more concerned about their inner beauty than their outward beauty.

Was the virtuous woman of Prov 31 dressed shabbily? No, she dressed very well. Prov 31:22 says “She makes tapestry for herself; her clothing is fine linen and purple.” Yet the Bible tells us that she had inner beauty. This shows us that she was able to strike a balance between dressing up on the outside and growing beautiful on the inside with the beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God.

Let this wonderful woman of Prov 31 be the role model for all the young girls in this assembly.
As for you young boys, remember that you will be the heads of your families. If God expects wives who are only second in command in their homes to be like the Virtuous Woman, what will He expect of you?

(Nahomi Dhinakar; Published in Youth Column of Dhyanamlar May 2004) Click here for other Youth Column articles

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