Whispering the Word
In the past 25 years there has been an explosion of work focusing on women in the OT. Significant work has been done in attending to critical issues raised by the patriarchal nature of the texts, but the question of...
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In the past 25 years there has been an explosion of work focusing on women in the OT. Significant work has been done in attending to critical issues raised by the patriarchal nature of the texts, but the question of how to hear these texts as the word of God is often left unaddressed. Many Christians who call themselves feminist wonder if they can simultaneously maintain their faith in feminist principles of gender equality AND their faith that God is speaking to them and the church through the Scriptures. Jacqueline Lapsley addresses this issue, as she reads and interprets a number of narratives in which women are prominent in order to reflect critically on issues of gender but with the ultimate goal of considering how these stories may reflect "God's word for us." Lapsley proposes three strategies: (1) attending to women's words; (2) attending to the narrator's perspective; and (3) attending to textual worldview--which she applies to specific tex
Many Christian feminists wonder if they can simultaneously maintain their commitment to principles of gender equality and their faith in the Scriptures, particularly the Old Testament. Writing in response to feminist biblical scholars who approach the Old Testament with a hermeneutic of suspicion, Jacqueline Lapsley offers Christian feminists strategies to hear the subtle ideas and voices of the less powerful within the Old Testament texts. Reading and interpreting a number of Old Testament narratives in which women are prominent, Lapsley considers how these stories may reflect God's word for us. In doing so, she demonstrates how the narrative often attempts to shape the moral response of the reader by revealing the intricacy and complexity of the moral world evoked. In this gentle shaping of the reader's ethical sensibilities, she argues, is where God may be whispering a word for us.
Jacqueline E. Lapsley is Associate Professor of Old Testament at Princeton Theological Seminary. Among her books is "Whispering the Word: Hearing Women's Stories in the Old Testament", published by Westminster John Knox Press.