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Publisher Description

With conversations and headlines about abuse, power, and assault, women are all looking for answers. Marlo Schalesky provides a biblical response to the tough questions these issues raise by exploring the stories of twenty women in Scripture. Women of the Bible Speak Out is a study of the biblical text with a focus on God’s responses to hurting women and how He offers freedom and wholeness. Schalesky is a trusted theologian and communicates in a way that’s relevant and easy to understand. She writes insightfully, compassionately, and hopefully, reminding us that God is extending His healing hand to women today.

Religion & Spirituality
June 2
Our Daily Bread Publishing
Discovery House Publishers

Customer Reviews

Book of Ruth Ann ,


Those who have been abused will feel impowered by stories of women healed by Jesus.

Marlo looks at this woman to learn about the source of brokenness in life. She imagines Eve’s dismay at Adam’s betrayal as he “blames” her for his choice to eat the apple. Was she hurt by what Adam said to God? Maybe. Adam was telling the truth.

Jesus quotes Adam in Mark 10:7, “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife”. Jesus explains, “Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”

This suggests Adam told God he was choosing to keep his marriage vows with Eve. Since God teaches consequences ahead of time, we can intuit Adam knew Eve would be sent from the garden because of her actions. I think Adam’s answer is also a reference to his marriage commitment to Eve.

I don’t believe, either, that the Lord created enmity between men and women. But, I disagree when the author implies brokeness between men and women originated in this excerpt. I believe we would see our Heavenly Father gave us a good chance for success.

We can hope for happiness in marriage as we see Adam honor his pledge with Eve.

Lot’s Daughters

The tragedy of the girl who was raped is horrible. It crushed her spirit and she ended up taking her life.

Lot was portrayed in this chapter as being “cast out” of Sodom by the Lord because of his wickedness. It seems like he offered his daughters to be “used” by the evil men of Sodom but that doesn’t fit with the rest of the account in the scriptures.

I suggest we read the full narrative. Before the tale in this book, Lot’s uncle, Abraham, begs the Lord to spare Sodom. The Lord agrees if ten righteous people can be found there. Several angels come to Lot’s house in Sodom and warn him to leave. Lot pleads to God for help. The Lord says He has accepted Lot.

God spared him as he obeyed. Lot was not ‘thrown out’ of Sodom but was “brought out” to save him and his daughters.

Now as we can see Lot’s reputation of leading a righteous life, we can evaluate the out of character statement he seemingly made in verse 8. Whenever I read something that is inconsistent with the rest of God’s commandments, I check the translation.

JST, Genesis 19:13 adds the word ‘not’ in several places to clarify this verse. Lot tried to send the wicked men away. Even when they threatened him with bodily harm, he did not budge. It was only through the actions of the angels that Lot and his daughters were saved.

Marlo says the Levite gave the concubine to the men of the city Gibeah to be abused in the story of the concubine and the Levite but I thought it was the owner of the home where they were staying. In the King James version of the Bible, it appears that it is the master of the house. Judges 19:23 specifically adds this. The man mentioned in verse 25 is probably the same man. The Levite seemed too sad when he discovered his concubine dead to be guilty here.

My experiences affect how I see people. Jesus teaches me how to be healed. That gift is what Christ wants us to strive for.

“God cares deeply about every act of abuse that is suffered by his people. Daughters, concubines, women, you, and me. And even when he seems slow to act, he will never just let it go.”

Mary and Martha

The author felt guilty for not wanting to teach the toddlers at her church once a month. I sympathize with both the author, anything seems arduous when I’m exhausted, and with the pastor’s wife, as I’ve heard how challenging it is to find someone willing to keep an eye on the youngest people. If nobody is available to teach them, there won’t be a nursery.

I’ve cared for children often. It is tiring when there are a lot in one class. Yet teaching and caring for this group was most fulfilling when I taught my children too. I didn’t feel far away from Jesus.

I agree we are quick to judge and sometimes treat other women harshly. When we do that maybe we haven’t accepted ourselves or seen our own worth in God’s eyes. It’s easy to perceive other people’s ill-treatment towards us but it’s harder to see when we exploit someone.

I was mildly sad by her take on Mary and Martha. They do not appear maltreated to me.

Jesus doesn’t diminish us. The women in the Bible often had to conform to society's expectations not in choosing to be themselves as the Lord allows since it pleases His daughters. Jesus ministered to women with gentleness, respect, and trust.

Yes, God created men and women as equals. Devaluing our part in God’s plan damages our dignity!

Our divine responsibilities support us in being happy. Let’s value our part in the significant aspect Jesus regards it.

Marlo shares her assumption about our duty in regards to other people. I don’t agree that the Lord only wants us to watch out for us as He asks us to follow His son. Heavenly Father wants us to help others as Jesus did.

“Jesus never calls us to meet the expectations of others.”

Perhaps we should see ourselves as part of the community of Christ. He needs us to care for each other. I served in various church opportunities. I made new friends and had fun! We can live so that God knows we love Him as we serve like His son.

The Bible tells of a pearl of great price. The merchant sold everything he had to buy it. The pearl is like the heaven. If we follow Jesus, we can have this pearl.

Jesus knew the truth would set these women free. In these stories, Jesus shows He is the good shepherd. His love is all consuming as He not only seeks out those who are lost, He loves to forgive.

We may not interpret the scriptures the same but we can still listen. I like that Marlo reminds us all brokenness and shame may be healed through Jesus and of our worth to Him. He showed himself to Mary Magdalena before His disciples after He was risen. Jesus cares about us and is there for us too if we follow Him.

I received a free advanced reader copy of this book. All opinions are completely my own.

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