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10 Common Misconceptions about Biblical Womanhood

By: Bethany Baird

I was twenty-two years old and totally taken off guard by Lacy’s blatant attacks on my beliefs. Apparently, she had heard about my perspectives and beliefs on biblical womanhood and was not impressed.

In fact, offended/annoyed would be the right way to describe her feelings towards me at that time.

During this back and forth “debate” of sorts, I was extremely uncomfortable.

I wasn’t exactly sure how to counter Lacy’s arguments and I was a little insecure about my stance on Scripture and biblical womanhood.

I felt like Lacy was completely demeaning and attacking biblical womanhood and I felt at a loss for words to defend what I believed.

Looking back on that conversation, I now realize that Lacy was buying into almost all 10 of these misconceptions about biblical womanhood. Unfortunately, I was really unequipped to back up my beliefs and Lacy left no better off than where she had started.

Thankfully, that convo inspired me to dig deeper and learn how to backup what I believe is true about biblical womanhood.

My prayer is that these 10 common misconceptions about biblical womanhood will open your eyes to the truth and equip you to better share truth with young women and women around you.  

10 Common Misconceptions About Biblical Womanhood:

1. Biblical womanhood is NOT about being a doormat

This is one of the most popular and common misconceptions you will hear when it comes to this topic. Despite its popularity, it simply isn’t supported by Scripture. Absolutely nowhere in the Bible will you find God encouraging a “doormat” mentality amongst men or women. Think of Esther, Rahab, Ruth, Mary (the mother of Jesus), Abigail and many more.

These women are held up to us as examples of godly, beautiful, biblical women and they are anything but doormats. They are smart, hardworking, talented, gifted and gutsy women all striving to honor God with their lives.

In a nutshell…

Esther – Approaches the King unannounced and risks her life to save the Jews.

Rahab – A former prostitute gives her Life to God and helps the Israelites conquer the city.

Ruth – Selflessly follows her mother in law to a foreign land and works hard to support her.

Mary – Puts her life at risk by accepting the dangerous responsibility of bringing Jesus into the world.

Abigail – Wisely negotiates with David and saves her husband from being killed.

2. Biblical womanhood is NOT about being a wimp

The more I learn about God defined womanhood the more I realize it takes a seriously strong woman to live it out. It’s easy to go with the flow and drift with the cultural current. It’s hard to resist the trends and the modern ideas for womanhood and stick to God’s word and His truth.

Women who truly live out biblical womanhood are really some of the bravest and strongest I know. They are willing to swim against the current and stand alone. Biblical womanhood isn’t for the faint of heart or wimpy. No. Biblical womanhood is for brave women who are willing to fight for truth and embrace God’s Word even when it’s hard.

3. Biblical womanhood is NOT about being less than a man

Whoever started this whole notion that women are “less than men” obviously didn’t read the Bible. The Bible absolutely and completely supports the idea that men and women are created equal. Neither one is more valuable. They are equally valuable but purposely different.

God created man and woman to each fulfill a unique purpose on earth. Different doesn’t mean “less than.” I challenge you to search Scripture and see how God talks about women. I also challenge you to look through the New Testament and notice the way Jesus treated women. He literally went against the cultural norm and treated women with care and respect. He actually spoke to them and treated them with value.

4. Biblical womanhood is NOT about throwing your brain away

One of the reasons Kristen and I wrote Girl Defined: God’s Radical Design for Beauty, Femininity, and Identity was to show women the immense value and purpose they have. There have been many misconceptions about biblical womanhood from Christians and non-Christians alike.

In Girl Defined Kristen and I take you into the lives of four different women, in different seasons of life, each using their lives to live out biblical womanhood and glorify God. In no way have these women checked their brains at the door.

If you are truly living your life with a Christ-centered purpose and eternal mindset, you will need all the brains you can get.

5. Biblical womanhood is NOT about staying at home

Sadly, in our day and age, Christian women have gone to one of two extremes. 1. They idolize the home and assume that if they are inside of the home they are honoring God. 2. They despise the home and assume if they are outside of the home they are successful.

Neither is the right option. We need to get our hearts right and remember the bigger purpose for why we do what we do. The home is hugely important, but, it’s not the home that matters most. It’s the people within the home. It’s taking care of the home to bless the family. It’s using the home to build relationships. It’s inviting people inside to foster community. It’s using the home as a tool to honor and glorify God.

Proverbs 31:10-31 gives us a great picture of how a home can be used in a beautiful way.

6. Biblical womanhood is NOT about just getting married

I’ve seen some incredibly beautiful marriages and I’ve seen a lot of awful ones. I’ve seen girls idolize marriage as the be all and end all and I’ve seen girls reject and embrace total independence from men. Both are wrong mindsets.

We as Christian girls must remember that we are here on a Kingdom mission. God has given us His instruction manual on how we as women can best honor Him. God created marriage as a means for us to better serve Him as a team. He created it for companionship, for reproducing, for pleasure, and as a way for us to represent the gospel. I really encourage you gals to remember that marriage is beautiful, but, the purpose of marriage is to point to Someone greater.

7. Biblical womanhood is NOT about dressing old fashioned

Drabby clothes, no makeup, scraggly hair, and bad breath. That may be the image some of you think of when you hear the words “biblical womanhood.” I’ve got great news for you gals, that’s a total misconception.

Some of the godliest, most Christ-centered, women I know are also some of the most beautiful. Being a biblical woman isn’t about being old fashioned. Biblical womanhood is about dressing in the way that best represents and honors the purity and holiness of Christ. I seriously encourage you to check out this video on modesty that my sisters and I created. Project Modesty Video

8. Biblical womanhood is NOT about living a boring life

Personal confession time. The more that I’ve strived to live out biblical womanhood, the more exciting my life has become. Seriously, God is full of amazing surprises and living for Him is one adventurous journey.

Living as a biblical woman provides a bigger and greater vision for life. Everything takes on a greater purpose. Everything becomes about the Kingdom. Think about it…

Instead of just going to the grocery store and grabbing groceries, you have the opportunity to build relationships and share the hope and purpose of the gospel.

Instead of just raising kids to grow up and become independent, you have the care of souls and are given the privilege to disciple them.

Life begins to take on a whole new meaning when you live in light of Christ and the gospel. 

9. Biblical womanhood is NOT about just doing dishes and scrubbing toilets

Y’all. Really? What even? Yes, these are super important daily tasks that need to be done (to the glory of God of course), but really? Biblical womanhood is about so much more than this. Remember that your living space is a tool for you to nurture relationships, to reproduce life (physically and spiritually), and to care for those around you.

Scrub those toilets and wash those dishes, but, don’t lose site of the “why” behind the scrubbing. Scrub as a means to love, bless, and disciple those God has placed in your sphere of influence.

10. Biblical womanhood is NOT about you

All in all, we just need to take our eyes off of ourselves. Life isn’t about us. Biblical womanhood isn’t about is. Biblical manhood isn’t about us. The more Christ becomes greater in our eyes (and we become less), the easier this topic will seem.

We need to remove ourselves from the “highest of highs” and remember that it’s all about Christ.

Biblical womanhood is about living all in for Christ and using your one life to make an impact for eternity. It’s about making disciples, sharing the gospel, loving the Lord with all your heart, soul, mind and strength, following God’s Word, and doing your best to reflect Christ as a female.

Wrapping it up…

Which of these common misconceptions have you been deceived by?

How does God’s Word debunk the lies you’ve believed about biblical womanhood?

PHOTO CREDIT

Girl Pondering

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  • Rachel M.

    This was an awesome article Bethany! You did such a great job of proving that these misconceptions are totally false! And yes, I do believe that so many people who hold these misconceptions haven’t read the Bible at all and are just making assumptions.

    I also wanted to point out a small typo near the end of your article. You wrote, “Biblical womanhood isn’t about is.” I just wanted to say that I am positive that you meant “us” at the end of the sentence there. ; ) Great job though!

    • Thank you so much for your encouraging words! I’m so glad to know you enjoyed it! 🙂

  • Shanice Harris

    How can I best honour God and not end up idolizing a man for marriage? Right now, in my mid twenties, I have been struggling with idolatry: Idolizing a Christian man with marriage as the goal. Also when I read about when in the Bible, our flesh seems to be

  • Hey,
    Wonderful post! It really is sad to see how people swallow those lies hook, line, and sinker. I also wanted to point out this little typo “I seriously encourage you to check out this video on modesty that my sisters and created.” I think that was supposed to be “that my sisters and I created.” Just letting you know! Keep up the good work! : )

    God bless,
    Tatiana

    • Thank you 🙂 I went back and fixed it 🙂

  • Emma Grace

    Great Post!

  • Anna

    THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!

    I really needed this. I fell for the lies that being a girl was a weak thing, always the victim, and having some boring life. I love your ministry. THANKS Beth 🙂

  • Amen!

  • Chloe

    You should read Created to be His Helpmeet by Debbie Pearl!

    • Chloe

      Preparing to be His Helpmeet is also fantastic! Both are based on Biblical womanhood, especially submission to and respect for our husbands.

  • Maddie

    I have a quick question about biblical womanhood. You said that it’s not about staying at home. Does this mean that married woman are allowed to have jobs outside of the home and still be living a life that glorifies God?

    • Chloe

      A woman’s work and mission field is in her own home, but the decision is really up to the husband, who is her head and authority.

      • OrangeGirl

        No. It should be her choice because it is her life. Not his. He doesn’t own her.

        • Chloe

          Marriage is a picture of God’s relationship with the Church. He is the Groom and we are the Bride. When we enter into a relationship with Christ (i.e., when we become saved), He becomes our Lord and Master. He gives us a new name. We are His servants, His slaves. If God tells us to do something, mercy on us if we don’t do it! Just so, when a woman marries, she takes her husband’s name. A woman is to submit to her spouse just as we are to submit to the Lord. Obedience brings glory to God’s name. When a woman obeys her husband because she acknowledges his God-given authority over her, she is ultimately obeying God! Praise His glorious Name!

    • Gracie

      I want you to read Proverbs 31. This chick is awesome 😀 She works at home, outside of the home, buys a field, and works in it….dresses fashionably and her biggest fans are her kids and husband. We can all be our own version. If God gave you dreams, I don’t believe he is gonna set you up with a punk that keeps you at home only with lock and key.

      • Maddie

        I have read it, she is totally awesome! Definitely a good example to follow. I currently have no clue what I want to do, but I know God has a plan for me. As for my future husband encouraging my dreams, I’m currently dating someone, whom I pray to be my future husband, who does exactly that 🙂

  • Kate Medaris

    The whole idea of “equally valuable but purposefully different”… That IS about women being less than men. Yes, you can say that women are just as necessary for humanity. But if you’re going to say that a divine being created men and women with vastly different social purposes in mind, and advocate for distinct gender roles with regards to a woman’s place in a relationship, then that is not equality.

    Gender equality is equal opportunity. It’s that simple. Not purposefully different, with women given and encouraged the same opportunities for their careers and their lives as men. That is real equality.

    • Chloe

      The Bible clearly defines specific roles for women that are very different from the roles of men. By equally valuable but purposefully different she means that God does not view men as more valuable than women. We are all priceless, but we have different purposes, callings, and roles in life. Christianity has unfortunately conformed to cultural ideas though. Things are not meant to be the way they are now.

      • Kate Medaris

        If you argue for women to have different roles than men for no reason other than their gender, then you are arguing against equality. And saying that men and women are “equally valuable” simply isn’t enough.

        When slaves were used to grow cotton, both the slave and the owner were equally needed in order to produce cotton. In a sense, they were equally necessary for the process, with vastly different roles. That is not equality, and neither are enforced gender roles.

        • The answer is not for men and women to try to be alike. All men and women must be themselves, realizing that God has given each of us unique abilities with which to pursue our goals, and that our primary responsibility is to take full advantage of those abilities.

        • Chloe

          Thanks for the response, Kate! Yes, I am arguing against equality. I don’t think it’s Biblical. Because of the feminist movement, men and women now can have the same jobs, but it contradicts the Word of God. What’s embarrassing is that feminism has infiltrated the Church! As for “equally valuable”, try reading the Bible sometime. There is nothing that can separate us from God’s love.

      • Gracie

        Lots of women married, with kids, and submissive are doing AMAZING work for Jesus out of the home and in. Those kind of ideas is what made me hate my gender for YEARS. but what liberated me, is articles like the ones Kate and Beth put out, because I have skills and talents too, and letting them fade would be a waste of the passion Jesus has given me for seeing people get closer to God.

        Just know that each person has a calling. Some girls are made to shake the nation, while others are made to change their home. SO MANY great preachers are so, because of their Mothers. So being a woman is a high calling, and is different for everyone. We like to put people in boxes, and its not the Biblical way. Look at Deborah and Ruth…totally different. Both women.

        • OrangeGirl

          “Those kind of ideas is what made me hate my gender for YEARS.”

          To be honest, this sounds like you developed Stockholm syndrome for a life that doesn’t value you or your dreams and ambitions.

  • Jane Almeida

    Great post! 🙂

  • I loved the last one especially. Our culture is becoming more and more individualistic and self-centered. But it’s not about us. Biblical womanhood isn’t about us. Pursuing Jesus isn’t about us. Living holy in an unholy world isn’t about us. It’s about glorifying our Savior, like you said. It’s about making more of Him and less of me.

    Thank you!

  • Sadie Boyett

    Ten definitely is the one I struggle with the most.

  • Caroline

    I struggle a LOT with number 5. And many of you may disagree. I get being submissive to your husband, but I also don’t think that every woman should remain at home without a job after high school waiting for her prince charming to rescue her just so she can then sit at home all day until she immediately starts having children. In my life- and a lot of other great Christian women I know- I knew I had to take initiative for my future and go to college and get a degree to be prepared for the future I wanted. I’ve always wanted to get married, serve God, and have children, but I also knew sitting around all day waiting for a man wasn’t going to help any of that. My parents encouraged me to work hard and get a job in high school, and they also taught me great responsibility by allowing me to pay all my bills. This is my last semester of college, and I have worked all four years and will end college with little to no debt. Had I not gone to college and waited patiently for a man as the key to starting my future, I’m afraid I would be very miserable. I couldn’t imagine having my husband break his back working hard to provide for me and a growing family by himself. I am a smart and responsible woman and I plan to help my husband by also supporting him and our future family financially. There’s so much beauty in that because if i decide to stay home with my children in the years to come, we will have saved for our future and thus creating a safe foundation in case problems arise. I see nothing wrong with women working outside the home. Neglecting family and the home is one thing, but if you can work and take care of your home then by all means get out there and do it. I also don’t believe women should have to wait for a husband to give her ‘permission’ to get a job outside of the home. A woman’s responsibility is to God first before she even meets her husband, and she should be proactively serving and working hard to provide for herself why she is single, and keep that mentality even with a family. I hate when very fundamental churches discourage women from getting educations or jobs. It’s like they are doubting that women can keep their convictions and stay strong in the ‘real world.’ We as Christian women need to support our sisters in whatever path God has chosen for them, because not every women has a desire to get married. She may desire to serve Him single. Some women desire to get further education to pursue the passions God has placed within them. Let’s not discourage our sisters that don’t desire the exact same plan as us. We never know who God may place in our paths in the workforce or even on the street that we may have missed had we all stayed home. The same goes for people that do choose to stay home though, I too believe that’s a great environment for nursing relationships and having discipleship. I support women that choose to be in the home, but that is not how I am going to approach life at this point and I am doing what I think God is best to prepare for my future.

    • Caroline

      I also wanted to add… what do you ladies think about women who have a desire to join the military? Personally, that is one of the top 2 options that I am considering for my future. I get that might not be considered ‘feminine,’ but there are so many brave women out there who do an awesome job serving our country and I can’t see that being a ‘wrong’ choice for a woman, even a Christian. I’m interested in your thoughts on that.

  • Ronnie

    I totally agree with everything on here! But I have a question: What do you think about the mission God gave Joan of Arc?

  • Giada

    Amazing post.


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