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Women in the Scriptures The Hebrew Bible, The New Testament, and The Qur’an Gina Belmonte Taylor Chaput Katrina Gould Lindsay Smith Women in the Hebrew Bible Ruth 1:16-18; 2:11-13; 4:13-17 Esther 2:16-17; 3:5-6; 4:7-9; 4:22-30; 8:3-12 Judges 4--5 Numbers 26:59 Exodus 15:20-21

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women in the scriptures the hebrew bible the new testament and the qur an

Women in the ScripturesThe Hebrew Bible, The New Testament, and The Qur’an

Gina Belmonte

Taylor Chaput

Katrina Gould

Lindsay Smith

women in the hebrew bible

Women in the Hebrew Bible

Ruth 1:16-18; 2:11-13; 4:13-17

Esther 2:16-17; 3:5-6; 4:7-9; 4:22-30; 8:3-12

Judges 4--5

Numbers 26:59

Exodus 15:20-21

roles in the hebrew bible
Roles in the Hebrew Bible
  • Women were portrayed in various ways- victims, sinners, and leaders
  • wives and mothers/center of household
  • not the social or economic equals of men
  • They could engage in business and trade (Proverbs 31)
  • women of highest status within the Tanakh were religious married mothers, especially mothers of sons ,

i.e. prophetess Deborah was both married and a mother

  • Women could own property, and collect inheritance if there were no sons
influential women in the hb
Influential Women in the HB
  • Eve, wife of Adam: original female sinner
  • Sarah, wife of Abraham: patriarch passed her off as his sister, allowing local rulers to lie with her. At age 90, God told her she would become pregnant and she bore Isaac
  • Rebekah, wife of Isaac and mother of Esau and Jacob: she conspired with her younger son Jacob to steal his older brother's blessing. Jacob later became Israel.
  • Tamar, sister-in-law to Judah: After the death of her first two husbands, she seduced Judah in the guise of a prostitute and bore his child. According to the new testament, this began the line that leads through King David to Jesus.
  • Miriam, sister of Moses: defied the Egyptian law (requiring the death of all male Hebrew children) and watched infant float Moses down the Nile for pharaoh's daughter to find.
influential women in the hb5
Influential Women in the HB
  • Delilah: The Philistine wife of Samson. Tricked him into revealing the secret of his power and then betrayed him to her countrymen.
  • Deborah: judge and prophetess.
  • Ruth: of The Book of Ruth. Moabite woman who married Elimelech and converted to Judaism; great grandmother of David
  • Bathsheba: married King David, mother of Solomon
  • Judith: seduced the tyrant Holofernes and then killed him in his tent as he slept.
  • 7 of the 55 prophets of the Bible were women :
  • Sarah (Gen 11:29 - 23:20)
  • Miriam (Ex. 15:20-21; Num. 12:1-12:15, 20:1)
  • Deborah (Judges 4:1 - 5:31)
  • Hannah (1 Sam 1:1 - 2:21)
  • Abigail (1 Sam 25:1 - 25:42)
  • Huldah (2 Kings 22:14-20)
  • Esther (The book of Esther)
  • 25:12-25

discusses women and portrays them as wicked

  • 26:1-18

Summarizes the virtues of women, and how they should support their families

women in the new testament

Women in the New Testament

Luke 1:39-66; 7:36-50; 10:38-42

John 4:4-26

roles in the new testament
Roles in the New Testament
  • Women are mentioned in all the gospels, but especially in Luke
  • Women are presented as wives, mothers, and disciples
  • The earliest and most devout followers of Jesus (Luke 8:1-3)
  • Often excluded from religious discussion until the arrival of Jesus (John 4:27)
  • Husbands and wives worked as missionary teams (Romans 16:1-15)
  • Teachings were directed towards “Brothers and Sisters”
influential women in the nt
Influential Women in the NT
  • Elizabeth: Zechariah’s wife, mother of John the Baptist
  • Herodias: wife of Herod, persuaded her daughter to ask for John the Baptist's head
  • Mary: wife of Joseph, virgin mother of Jesus
  • Mary Magdalene: disciple of Jesus, first to hear of Jesus’ resurrection
  • Martha: sister of Mary and Lazarus, disciple of Jesus
  • Numerous unnamed women, important in parables and conversion stories. (John 4:4-42, Luke 10:38-42, John 11:1-44)
  • 1:26-38

The announcement of the conception of Jesus.

  • 7:36-50

Forgiveness of the adulterous woman.

  • 21:1-4

Contribution of the poor widow.

  • 23:26-31

Jesus talks to women on the way to his crucifixion.

women in the qur an

Women in the Qur'an

3:35-37, 42-51




33:28-34, 50-55


roles of women in the qur an
Roles of Women in the Qur'an
  • Islam states that men and women are equal
  • In many ayahs the revelations are directed to both “men and women” (Surah 33:35)
  • What truly matters in Islamic morality, is not whether someone is male or female, but whether or not he or she is a believer who fears and respects Allah (Surah 9:71, 4:124)
  • Valued as mothers and wives
  • The Qur'an makes provisions for the physical and financial well-being of women (Surah 2:236, 2:240)
influential women in the qur an
Influential Women in the Qur'an
  • Maryam (Mary mother of Jesus) is the only woman named in the entire Qur'an.
  • However, there are numerous unnamed women mentioned such as the pharaoh’s wife, faithful women and the wives of the prophet
surah 4
Surah 4
  • 19-25:The treatment of wives, and proper courtship
  • 32: Fair treatment of women
  • 34: Roles of husbands in regard to wives and their loyalty
hb miriam
HB: Miriam
  • Older sister of Moses and Aaron
  • Prophetess- she foresaw Moses’ birth as bringing about redemption for the Israelites
  • Responsible for well-being throughout the Exodus
  • Died before reaching the Promised Land
  • Miriam is considered one of the liberators of the Children of Israel, along with her brothers Moses and Aaron.
  • Ex 2:1, 15:20-21, Numbers 12:1-15, 20:1
nt mary mother of jesus
NT: Mary, mother of Jesus
  • Known commonly as Mary of Nazareth
  • “Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary. Of her was born Jesus, who is called the Messiah.” (Matthew 1:16)
  • Chosen by God to bear His son because of her great faith and virtue.
  • Was a virgin and gave birth to Christ,

the Messiah.

  • Present at Jesus’ first miracle, crucifixion,

and resurrection.

  • Important saint often prayed for intercession.
  • Believed to have been assumed into Heaven,

body and soul.

  • Has made many apparitions on Earth, important to many Christians.
nt mary magdalene
NT: Mary Magdalene
  • “Mary” derived from Miriam, sister of Moses
  • Jesus cured her of seven demons and she followed him from one town to another as he preached.
  • Present at the crucifixion of Christ
  • In all of the four gospels, Mary Magdalene is present at the resurrection of Jesus, one of the first to learn about his resurrection
qur an maryam mary mother of jesus
Qur’an: Maryam (Mary mother of Jesus)
  • Mary, mother of Christ (3:35-37, 42-47, 19: 16-29)
  • Mary is the only woman named in the Qur’an
  • Virgin conception and role as mother of the “Messiah” recognized in the Qur’an
  • Chosen by and obedient to Allah
  • There are some references to Elizabeth, cousin of Mary, wife of Zachariah, though she is never named (3:37-41, 19:1-15)
  • Numerous ayahs mention the “wives of the prophet” and how they should behave (33:28-34) more on wives. . .
compare and contrast
Compare and contrast
  • Rosh Codesh-
  • Women are wives and mothers in all three books, but they are more independent in the New Testament and not even named in the Qur’an.
  • “Mary”= “Miriam”=“Maryam” , HB, OT, Qur’an
  • Angel Gabriel’s Appearances
  • Purim and Esther
  • Female Saints and Apparitions of the Virgin Mary
worksheet questions
Worksheet Questions

1) Compare and contrast how Mary, mother of Jesus, is portrayed, mentioned, or alluded to in the scriptures of each religion (as usual, cite specific scriptural references)

Judaism –

Christianity –

Islam –

2) Based on the assigned readings, pick another female character from each religion (other than Mary, Mother of Jesus) and describe her role in that passage (again, please cite specific references).

Judaism –

Christianity –

Islam –