We tend to look at men as the "saviors." They are the head of the family, breadwinners, and protectors. But there have been times in God’s story that women have been the saviors. Despite all of Satan’s tries, women have played pivotal roles in making sure God’s will is done.
This week, for our book club, we are reading about two women who ultimately saved their people. One was Esther who delivered the Jewish people from Haman’s evil plans and the other is Miriam, who made sure her brother Moses was kept from certain death.
Most of you know the story of Esther. She is one of only two women to have a book of the Bible named after her. Her story is of hidden fears, retaining who she was in the face of danger, and the deliverance of her people thanks to her faithfulness to God.
Granted, most prefer to look at Esther’s story as a romance novel, but that’s not the case. The love she received from the King, and possibly felt for the King, was just the platform to bounce off of when it came to asking for a pardon for the Jewish people.
“The book of Esther is not about an ancient beauty contest, and it should not be trivialized as a romance. On the contrary, it depicts the brutality and exploitation women have faced through the centuries. It also offers hope to women by spotlighting how God used a brave Jewish girl to challenge the most sinister injustice.” J. Lee Grady pg 98
We have a tendency to overlook this book thinking it’s just a short story of love and romance, but in fact, it’s about so much more.
God was using Esther to fight the evil that was before His people.
In a book where God is never mentioned, we can see His hands over every action present. We see His guiding and prompting throughout this book--if we just pay attention.
The sad fact is there are so many Esthers out there in the world today who are ignoring their Godly calling and choosing to remain in the flesh.
True, following God is not easy. It wasn’t for Esther either. Out of fear, she had to hide who she truly was and perform actions that would have gone against her beliefs, all to be made queen. God knew exactly what He was asking of her though, and knew that she was the right woman for the job. She was to be the one to save the Jews.
As for the other woman we are studying this week…she was merely a child when she became the savior of her bother. Her boldness and unwavering courage helped to ensure that Moses would be kept safe from harm in a world where death was a certainty for him. As a result, he went on to deliver his people from the Pharaoh.
When Miriam saw the Pharaoh’s daughter scoop him up out of the water she rushed over and said: “Shall I go and get one of the Hebrew women to nurse the baby for you?” This was not the action of a scared and shy child. She was filled with courage and strength to be able to approach royalty and confront her to make sure her brother was taken care of.
This is not the end of her story as, later in life, we see her as a “Prophetess.” Her gifts from God have matured and allowed her to spread God’s message with better authority. The boldness and courage she had as a child has been used to help her hear God more clearly and convey His message to the people of Israel.
But, as any earthly human, Miriam is not without her faults and spoke against Moses. But, like a loving father, God disciplined her with a very public display of leprosy. She was only human but got a little full of herself and God showed her that He was in charge. When much is given, much is required.
These two women, Esther and Miriam, used their God-given gifts to make sure they delivered the Jewish people from death. Two different situations, two different scenarios, but one community---God’s loved and favored people.
Both of these women were put into circumstances that would help save God’s loved people. They probably never imagined they would make such an impact on history or that they would be used for such a glorious task. But yet, God made sure they were equipped with everything they needed to accomplish the task set before them.
This week, I pray that we can study through these women’s lives and see some of them in ourselves. We all have the ability to be great as long as we just find our strength from God. He will provide us with everything we need.
1. Many like to look at Esther’s story as one of romance and love, but please share your thoughts. Do you see her story as something more, and if so, why should we keep from looking at it as a romance novel?
2. Mordecai and Esther were partners in their struggle against the wicked plans of Haman. How does this reveal God’s plan for men and women?
3. Can you think of a women in leadership you admire? What qualities does she possess that makes her a great leader?