Singleness

Sarah: A Holy Woman

Your adornment must not be merely external — braiding the hair, and wearing gold jewelry, or putting on dresses; but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God. For in this way in former times the holy women also, who hoped in God, used to adorn themselves, being submissive to their own husbands; just as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, and you have become her children if you do what is right without being frightened by any fear. (1 Peter 3:3-5)

I’m going to take the next few weeks to look at Sarah, a woman the Bible calls “holy.” There is so much to be gleaned from the story of her life! I hope you enjoy it as much as I have.

Peter refers to Sarah (and others like her) as holy. What qualified them to be defined in such a way? Surprisingly, nothing very “supernatural”. No bizarre signs and wonders, no glowing halos hovering above their heads. Wanna know why they’re holy? Because they trusted God and submitted to their husbands! Really? That’s it?? Obviously there’s more to these two things than meets the eye. Let’s keep digging!

Submission and trust are not just thrown in as two arbitrary qualities of the Bible’s good girls. The two go hand in hand. A true heart attitude of peaceful submission — free from worry, anxiety, or bitterness — is only possible when we find a deep place of trust in God. Sarah learned trust through difficult situations as she trusted God, obeyed in spite of her husband’s fallibility, and reaped reward.

Now, although we’re looking at a specific example of a wife and how she drew near to God as she rightly related to her husband, this is applicable to all women. In fact, I first did this study when I was 22, unmarried, and seeking to honor and submit to my father, even when it wasn’t easy. Submission is not simply for wives, or for a few seasons of life. God desires women to be under a covering of some sort in every season of their lives, and through this structure of leadership and authority, she finds protection, guidance, care — and an opportunity to trust God implicitly! (If you have thoughts or questions on any of that, please, let me know!)

Get a head start: Read Genesis 12:1-20, and 20:1-18.

Discussion

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  1. Hi, Danica!! Great thoughts!!
    I have a quick question though…
    Do you think the guidance should be always by men?
    or do you think an older lady or a woman leader can guide them?
    Do you think a woman should always have a man in her life that she can submit to?

    Posted by Song | April 15, 2009, 9:15 pm
  2. Song,

    Thanks for your questions! I’ll do my best to answer concisely here; you can ask Nancy or Brietta or my mom if you want a more comprehensive answer.

    When I say covering, I don’t mean to say that all discipleship and instruction should come from a male figure. Titus 2 makes it clear that older women are supposed to teach younger women — a motherly, mentoring relationship that is meant to inform our daily Christian living.

    That said, I think that the Lord means for there to always be a father, older brother, pastor, whoever, to whom we can go for counsel, and who is looking out for us. Like in your situation, with unsaved parents who are half-way around the world: you have “mothers” like Jiwon, my mom, etc, who serve as your Titus 2 mentors. But you also have Daniel and my dad who are watching out for you and available to you for counsel. While it’s true that men and women ARE equal heirs of grace, we were created differently, and so there is a unique wisdom and safety that comes from male leadership. I will go out on a limb and say that, scripturally and experientially, women way out on their own, apart from an accountable relationship with biblical male leadership, get wacky. :)

    This, by the way, is a bit of a controversial conversation, due to feminism and legalistic patriarchal practice.

    Does this help at all?

    Posted by Danica | April 17, 2009, 7:56 am
  3. Hi, Danica
    Thank you so much for your answer…
    I wasn’t really asking in a feminine perspective or anything.
    I was just purely curious if I should be always submissive to men through out my life.
    But anyway, thank you so much for your insight.
    I love reading your blog and looking at Jameson’s pictures!!
    Miss you guys~^^*

    Posted by Song | April 19, 2009, 5:26 pm
  4. One additional thought:
    Women are not called to submission to “men” in general, only in specific. It would be impossible, first of all, to submit to all men everywhere. But it is also not what the scripture instructs. Daughters submit to fathers, wives to husbands. Sheep submit to pastoral leadership and employees to employers. Citizens submit to legal and governmental authorities. But women are not called to submit to all men everywhere.
    Just a clarification, for our readers benefit!

    Posted by Darlene | April 20, 2009, 8:03 am
  5. Thank you so much, both of you!! *^_______^*

    Posted by Song | April 20, 2009, 6:57 pm