Biblical Womanhood Defined:
What does it really mean to be feminine?
By Pastor Art Kohl
Copyright © 2004-96
Permission granted to freely copy.
Scripture verses are from the King James Holy Bible.
It is absolutely wrong for a man to be feminine. It is so wrong that it is listed among other behaviors that tell us a person isn't really saved.
1 Corinthians 6:9-11, "Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God."
If is so wrong for a man to be feminine, isn't it equally wrong for a woman to be masculine?
We live in a day where some women want to work like a man, dress like a man, curse like a man, spit like a man, drink like a man, stink like a man, play like a man, smoke like a man, chew like a man, fight like a man, boss like a man, swear like a man, etc. To be like a man is their highest goal and achievement. The pursuit of masculinity is their highest calling. Anything that man can do, they want to do. There are two problems with this:
First: Most of what man does is wrong.
Second: A woman has to stoop and lower herself to come down to a man's level. She has not achieved, she has demoted herself.
Because the world has come to this, many ladies are afraid to be feminine. After all, who wants to be different. It takes a great deal of courage for a woman today to be all God wants her to be.
The Bible is the textbook on femininity, not the feminists. The feminists are really masculinists. Women who wants to be masculine. Woman who resent being women. Women who want to be men. If you will look closely at them, the result of their pursuit is misery. Misery because their whole life is spent missing God's purpose in life. As a fish out of water or a bird with a broken wing, they cannot enjoy the intended purpose that God has made them for, and are too proud to humble themselves to find it.
Don't be afraid to be feminine, in the Bible sense of the word. These are the happiest, most fulfilled ladies on earth. Beside all that, we will be responsible for, and give an account for what the scriptures teach regarding this responsibility. As we then look forward to, and prepare to face God at the Judgment seat of Christ, ladies, consider these 34 characteristics of Biblical femininity:
1. Virtue Proverbs 31:10, "Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies." Virtue means to be clean and pure. To be morally excellent is a good quality.
2. Loyalty Proverbs 31:11-12, "The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life." Loyalty is the opposite of treachery. Jeremiah 3:20, "Surely as a wife treacherously departeth from her husband, so have ye dealt treacherously with me, O house of Israel, saith the LORD." A feminine lady is loyal to her husband, her God, her church, her children, her Savior, etc.
3. Industry Proverbs 31:13-16, "She seeketh wool, and flax, and worketh willingly with her hands. She is like the merchants' ships; she bringeth her food from afar. She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens. She considereth a field, and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard." Industry is the opposite of laziness and sloth. Her energy is given to her household. The word "household" appears four times in Proverbs 31 as the direction of her industry. Many of the other verses in this chapter speak of her industry. She is not a workaholic hiding from God, she is industrious for God.
4. Strength Proverbs 31:17, "She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms." She is not a weakling. She becomes stronger and stronger in body, intelligence, emotions, spirituality, etc.
5. Ministering Proverbs 31:18-20, "She perceiveth that her merchandise is good: her candle goeth not out by night. She layeth her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff. She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy." She is not self-serving. The feminine woman ministers to others. She remembers the poor. She is a giver of alms.
6. Wisdom Proverbs 31:26a, "She openeth her mouth with wisdom ...." Wisdom is the ability to use and apply knowledge rightly. She fills her mind and heart with the word of God, and then uses it appropriately to every situation she faces in life.
7. Kindness Proverbs 31:26b, "... and in her tongue is the law of kindness." Feminine women are kind, in word and action. "Charity is kind," 1 Corinthians 13:4. Thus, they are filled with Charity.
8. Fear for God Proverbs 31:30 "Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the LORD, she shall be praised." Femininity fears God. Ecclesiastes 12:13-14, "Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil." Feminine women do their duty.
9. Are Praised Proverbs 31:28, "Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her." Proverbs 31:30, "Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the LORD, she shall be praised. Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates." She is praised by her own husband and by her works. Her works for God are so obvious, that they cry out in praise of her. Only one other being in all of the Old Testament is praised, and that is God!
Now lets leave the Old Testament and look at more characteristics defining Femininity in the New Testament:
10. Benevolence 1 Corinthians 7:3, "Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband." She receives benevolence from her husband, and also returns benevolence to her husband. Benevolence means "good will as a conjugal duty; to be well-minded towards; reconciled with."
11. Submission Ephesians 5:22, "Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord." Colossians 3:18, "Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord." With the type of submission that she has to the Lord, she also directs the same submission to her husband. "Submission" means "to be subordinate to, to yield under to." The same word is used in submitting to God in James 4:7 and to government in 1 Peter 2:13.
12. Reverence Ephesians 5:33, "Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband." She is in awe of her husband. She respects him with fear. This word is usually translated "to be afraid of, to fear." She has a holy devotion to him and fears him similar to her fear for God.
Let's look at more characteristics of Biblical Femininity from the following text:
1 Timothy 2:9-15, "In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; But
(which becometh women professing godliness) with good works. Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety."
13. Modest in dress She hides the form of her body. Her clothes are long, loose-fitting and cover all of her nakedness. She does not dress in the "attire of an harlot" as mentioned in Proverbs 7:10, "And, behold, there met him a woman with the attire of an harlot, and subtil of heart."
14. Shamefaced She has the ability to blush. Her eyes are down cast unlike a harlot whose face is bold toward impurity. (Proverbs 7:13-23)
15. Her Hair is Simple It is long (1 Corinthians 11:15) and simple. She is not trying to gain the attention of man by her appearance, but the praise of God.
16. Jewelry and Clothes Don't Mean Much to Her They are nice, simple and inexpensive.
17. Good Works She is clothed with good works. She is constantly doing good for her God, her husband, her children, her church, others, the lost, etc.
18. Learns God's Word in Silence She is not a "place seeker" in the church, but a humble student of God's word. She learns God's word and teaches the younger women (Titus 2:4) and her children. (2 Timothy 1:5; 3:15-16) She doesn't seek to usurp authority over men when it comes to the public teaching of God's word in the church. She hears the preaching and teaching ministries in silence. She asks questions at home. (1 Corinthians 14:35)
19. Faith She continues in faith and in the faith. She trusts in God and believes in Him.
20. Charity She is a living example of charity as it is defined in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a, "Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. Charity never faileth:"
Let's continue to learn more of the characteristics of true femininity by looking at the text in Titus 2:4-5, "That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed."
21. Sober She is intelligent. Being feminine does not mean she is dumb or a "dizzy broad." She is an intelligent woman. Sober means to be of a sound mind. She is ever gaining in knowledge.
22. Loves Her Husband There is a fondness in her heart toward her husband. She gives her life for him.
23. Loves Her Children There is a fondness in her heart toward her children. She does more than just put up with them. They are her life. She gives herself for them.
24. Discreet This is the opposite of being sexy. She does not carry herself about in a "sexy" way. She is modest in her dress and behavior.
25. Chaste She is sexually pure. She keeps herself for her husband and only unto him when married. She does not commit adultery or fornication.
26. Keeper at Home She is not a busybody. She loves to stay home and stays home. Home is where her heart is. She does not work out in the world unless she has no husband to care for her or he can't. If she is business-minded, she works out of her home.
27. Good Feminine women are good women. Good is the opposite of bad or evil. She is not bad in character. She does not do evil in practice.
28. Obedience She is obedient to her husband. Her desire is unto him (Genesis 3:16). He is the head of the family (1 Corinthians 11:3). Anything with two heads is a monster. She allows him to lead.
Our final text on feminine characteristics is found in 1 Peter 3:1-6, "Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear. Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price. For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands: Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement."
29. Subjection She is subject to her own husband. This word is a military term. It speaks of rank. According to 1 Corinthians 11:3, God has the highest rank, then Christ is under Him, then the husband is under Christ, then the wife is under her husband, then last the children are under the parents. The feminine woman doesn't want to be the General.
30. Fears Properly She has a proper fear for the authorities over her. A reverential and holy respect. She is not proud, rebellious or stubborn toward Divine leadership, family leadership or spiritual leadership.
31. Desire Feminine women have a desire toward their husbands. He is the hidden man of her heart. She is not a "looker". She is satisfied with the husband she has. Her desire is unto him. (Genesis 3:16)
32. Meek Spirited Meekness is the inward strength to depend on God to fight our battles, meet our needs, take care of situations, change people, etc. without taking things into our own hands. Meekness is not weakness, it is strength. The inward strength to truly let go and let God.
33. Quiet Spirited She is calm. She rules her emotions and will very well. Proverbs 25:28, "He that hath no rule over his own spirit is like a city that is broken down, and without walls." She is able to sit still and wait on God. She lets patience have her perfect work in her life and situations, James 1:4, "But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing." She is not noisy and demanding.
34. Fearless She is not afraid with any amazement. Nothing amazes her. She is mentally and spiritually prepared for anything. Some things may come up unexpectedly, but she doesn't go to pieces. She doesn't lose her head. She doesn't become an emotional basket case. True feminine women are soft but strong. They have grace and beauty. They mix blue denim with lace. Don't be afraid to be feminine.
Ladies, inventory your feminine character by the Word of God. Only let the Bible be your guide in this matter, not the ways of the women of the world. The Bible will be your judge someday, not them. Notice John 12:47-48 "And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world. He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day."
Pray for the help of the Holy Spirit to be the lady God wants you to be. Ask for the grace of God to help you in your time of need, Hebrews 4:16. God's grace will enable you in every good work, including these 34.
Here's His promise:
2 Corinthians 9:8, "And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work."
Do not try this on your own, ask for the help of the Holy Spirit and the Grace of God. Be feminine and be eternally rewarded!
Copyright © 2004-96
Permission granted to freely copy.
Scripture verses are from the King James Holy Bible.