Incredible Worth of a Woman
May 13, 2018
In contemplating Mother’s Day, I concluded that I cannot say anything that you have probably not already heard. I thought about different Mothers in the Bible, both the good and the bad, and I really did not feel led to look at any one of them specifically. After reading several biblical passages I decided to read Proverbs 31 about the virtuous woman again. All the while thinking in the back of my mind, there is nothing new here either. In fact, you have probably heard a hundred messages from Proverbs 31. But as I read the passage, the last part of verse 30 spoke to me.
“a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised”
This fear is not a trembling, hide in the corner kind of fear. It is an awe, respect, admiration, or devotion to Jehovah. Most of you are familiar with Proverbs 31. Verses 10-31 of this chapter lists over twenty things that characterize the life of a virtuous woman. She is a wife and a mother that is of incredible worth to a family, and she should be praised. In fact, verse 28 says that:
“Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her:”
As I read this, I thought to myself, this is what we need to talk about on Mother’s Day; praising the incredible worth of Mothers, grandmothers, and women in general. We often overlook all the things they do and we don’t recognize the value and wonder of women in our lives. Certainly, that is what the intent of Mother’s Day is all about, isn’t it? It should be a day of honoring moms, grandmothers, and women in general for the often-unpraised work of raising children, working alongside their husbands, and encouraging other women.
We live in a day when women must work outside the home and yet they still keep up with much of the household affairs. Though many husbands share in some of those duties at home, there is still a heavy load for women to carry, especially single Mothers. The thing is, we all know that what Mom does goes well beyond any household work, child care, or being a wonderful wife. A Mother’s influence and impact on the lives of not just her family, but even many others is huge. Women can influence our world today in ways no one else can.
And God says there is great worth and a reason for praise for a woman who leads a godly life. Unfortunately, there are no certificates of appreciation given for a Mother who instills moral values in the life of her children, or inspires trust in God when things get tough, or encourages growth in the Lord through her example. But God says, “A woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.”
We use special days like Mother’s Day, Birthdays, and Anniversaries to praise the women in our lives. But our praise shouldn’t just take place on special days, we should look for ways to praise the women in our lives on a regular basis. Why? Because of the incredible worth of the women in our lives.
It is interesting to me how times have changed. A hundred years ago, a woman’s value was directly related to the number of children she bore and the family she raised. It was common to have 4-8 children or more. In fact, I come from a family of four boys and Carrie’s family consisted of 8 children.
However, today, it is acceptable to have as many as two children, but if you have three you have become a menace to society by causing over population of the world. There is no longer support available for Moms because the value of women is no longer on children and raising a family. In fact, in many ways children are considered a burden these days hindering a woman from pursuing other interests or careers for life. Unfortunately, in many cases, the value of women is based on their ability to earn money.
No don’t get me wrong here. I think it is great that women pursue career paths that God has led them into. Women have so much more to contribute to our society than raising children. But the values of family and home have so drastically changed in our day that often the biblical idea of family is abandoned. When a pregnancy is unplanned, or it is a burden to the couple, abortion becomes the answer. When things get rough in a marriage relationship, the Father disappears, and the Mom is left to raise a family on her own. For her, pursuing a career is no longer a choice, but a necessity for survival.
I believe that God has prepared women to face things most men could never take on. The Proverbs 31 woman is a powerful depiction of how industrious, creative, compassionate, strong, wise, and instructive a woman can be. In fact, verse 25 tells us that a virtuous woman is ready to take on anything the world can throw at her “and she laughs at the time to come.” In other words, the Proverbs 31 woman says, “Bring it on,” I can handle it. Why is that true? Because the Proverbs 31 woman is a woman that fears God.
Even in our day, this is true. Times may be changing, but the truth of this statement never changes, “A woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.”
Women are a Special Creation of God
In a world that struggles at making men and women the same or equal in all things, there is one thing that is usually over looked. Women are a special creation of God. She may be the same in her intellect, her gifts, her strength, or any number of physical attributes, but God made her special.
Think back to the Genesis 1 creation account. As God was creating everything He was pronouncing different aspects of it as “good.” The light was good (1:4); the dry land and the seas were good (1:10); the plants were good (1:12); the Sun, moon and stars were good (1:18); the various kinds of sea creatures and birds were good (1:21); the various beasts that lived on dry land were good (1:25). But God said that something was “not good” in Genesis 2.
Then the LORD God said, "It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him."
Now you can look at this any way you want to, but God knows, and you and I know, that it would not be a good thing for a man to be alone. Now remember, God spoke all of creation into existence with the exception of two things. Two things God did not create with His spoken word. First, man was created from the dust to the ground and then woman was taken from the side of man. Though the same as man in many ways, woman was made special in creation and special as one who is fit or corresponds to man. Simply put, God made women as a special one of a kind creation for a specific purpose. No other part of creation was made like she was made.
There is something almost all women will experience that no man can ever experience. God gave her the ability to conceive life and have that life grow inside her womb. She will have a relationship with that life long before she gives birth. This may sound odd to you, but this is a special act of worship that the woman has for our Creator that no man will ever know from personal experience. Women are a special creation when it comes to bearing children. Childbearing is a fulfillment of God’s command to “be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth” (Genesis 1:28).
Scripture tells us that not only is the woman blessed in this, but the man also receives blessing from this special creation.
Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one's youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.
As a special creation, Mothers bring new life into this world and bring God’s blessing upon men and their children alike.
Women Are an Influential Creation of God
Like most everything that God blesses us with, there comes responsibility. Just because children are a blessing, raising children is not easy. You know that, and I know that. Though it is the job of both Moms and Dads, Mothers seem to have a unique influence on children that Dads don’t. If you read the book of Proverbs you will find many instructive proverbs for raising children. It regularly notes a difference between the influence of the Mother and Father in the home.
A wise son makes a glad father, but a foolish son is a sorrow to his mother.
The rod and reproof give wisdom, but a child left to himself brings shame to his mother.
Why does a wayward child seem to hurt more deeply to the Mother? Probably because she has a deeper connection through bearing the child and probably a more influential investment in the child. Often, the Old Testament talks about the Mothers of prominent leaders like the kings of Israel. I believe the idea is that the Mother is reflected in the king whether he is good or bad because of her influence on him as a child.
A Mother has incredible worth in bearing children and nurturing children with her influence in their lives. Children tend to reach out to their Mother first in times of crisis. Why is that? Her love and compassion has been evidenced in her investment in their lives. And for the most part, children recognize that.
Having said all that, we need to keep in mind that a woman’s worth is not contingent upon her having children. Certainly, children bring a unique worth for women, but if she never has children, that she doesn’t mean she doesn’t have incredible worth.
Women are a Loving Creation of God
Most of us men are too full of pride to admit it, but we need the help and love of a Woman. Someone who will partner with us, help us, give us encouragement and advice, love us in spite of our fallacies, and stand with us in tough and good times. God designed men and women to complement each other and become one in their relationship with each other. Men, we need to understand that a wife is a gift from the Lord.
House and wealth are inherited from fathers, but a prudent wife is from the LORD.
An excellent wife who can find? She is far more precious than jewels.
In other words, an excellent wife has more value that any precious material thing we can think of. Many successful men will admit that their success came about because of the support roles of their wives. A good wife can make all the difference in whether a man makes a difference in this world or not. It is evident from Genesis 1 and 2 that God’s design is that a man and a woman are a team working together to fulfill God’s purpose. Their God given roles as husband and wife are not superior or inferior, better or worse, they are simply different roles that are all vitally needed. So, there is incredible worth for a woman in a loving marriage relationship and in raising children. But that is not all.
Women are a Gifted Creation of God
The Bible is full of women that God used in many different ways. For instance, Miriam led all the women in worship and praise to the Lord after crossing the Red Sea in Exodus 15. Deborah was a prophetess and judge. 84-year-old Anna, who was widow for most of her life, lived and served at the Temple, and when she saw baby Jesus, she began to proclaim the coming of the Messiah.
It was mostly women who stayed with Jesus at His crucifixion, who helped bury His body and women were first at the tomb to witness His resurrection. The Apostle Paul had several women he considered co-laborers for Christ. Lydia was a seller of purple. The Proverbs 31 woman was a business woman on top of everything else she was doing. There is no one who could say that God is anti-woman. In fact, if you study the Scriptures, you will find that God puts incredible worth upon women.
When I see many of the women of our small congregation using the gifts they have for the glory of God, I get excited to realize how incredibly blessed we are by the women of this church. They are using their incredible worth to bless us!
God talks about how He uses women in the church in Titus.
Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.
There is incredible worth when a woman is obedient to God and makes her impact and influence upon others for godliness. Women are a special creation of God, an influential creation of God, a loving creation of God, and a gifted creation of God. And certainly, there is much more we could talk about here. There is so much praise that can be given for the women in our world.
But there is something here I think is very important for us to remember from the beginning of this message. Women can define what they feel their worth is apart from God and find little or temporal value for their lives. From God’s perspective, it will prove worthless in the end. Remember what Proverbs 31:30 said?
“a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised”
In conclusion this morning, I want you to know that as God’s creation, every woman has intrinsic value. Whether it is for being a mother, a wife, a professional of some kind, or even in ministry to others, but without the fear of God there is no eternal value. The true worth of a woman is related in her fulfilling God’s design with a love and passion for her God. This is true for men also, but since it is Mother’s Day, we will make the application to women.
Mothers should not only lead by example but teach their children what it means to live for the Lord. Listen, if you are a child of a godly mother, one who has invested her life in training you, teaching you, and being an example to you, and you are not walking with the Lord right now, the best Mother’s Day gift you can give both you and Mother is to get down on your knees before God and get your heart and life right with God.
If you are a Mother of children, I know it is sobering, but you are responsible for bringing them up to love the Lord. You need to be an example to them, showing them what it means to love God. If you don’t teach them, who will? How will they know the wonders of salvation from an eternal destiny separated from God if you don’t teach them?
Maybe you are here today, you don’t know Jesus as your Lord and Savior. If Jesus were to call us home today, would you be in Heaven? Do you know that for sure? Has there ever been a day when you have turned in faith to God and put your faith and trust in Him as your Lord and Savior?
The true worth of a woman centers on her faithfulness in knowing and following God. This begins with knowing Him as your Lord and Savior. This incredible worth continues as you develop a personal relationship with Him through devotions, prayer life, Bible study, and church fellowship. It encompasses setting your priorities according to God’s will and not your own selfish desires. This is how you will find your greatest joy and fulfillment. Listen, don’t let our world take away your value as a woman, a godly woman, a woman who fears God.