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Women's Inferior Status in The Bible Essay

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Corinthians 14:34 states, “Let the women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but let them be in subjection, as also saith the law” (Holy Bible, King James Edition). Edith Hamilton, "recognized as the greatest woman Classicist", says that the Bible is the only book before our century that looked to women as human beings, no better nor worse than men (Tanner). However, it cannot be said that this book was consistently favorable to women. Maybe not absolutely, but conditionally in personal opinion, the Bible shows numerous examples of a woman’s inferiority to men, an assessment that has been translated into the cultures of generations. In this essay I will address briefly instances in the bible pertaining to women, and continue on with thoughts on how I believe these notions have been interpreted into society.

Interpretations of the Bible are influential to our society because in the United States, approximately eighty-three percent of the population is Christian, according to a poll performed by ABC News. Perhaps the Bible is written with women subservient to men because the very story of creation is written as such. Genesis serves as the foundation of not only our universe, but also the religious text. In the biblical story of creation, Adam came first, then came the animals, and then last of all came Eve, putting the origin of women last. Then, it is Eve who is vulnerable enough for evil to deceive her into taking the apple and she who persuades Adam to follow her example. This sets up a basis that women are inherently weak and sinful for the rest of the faith to be built upon. (Stanton)

The negative view of the female sex continues in Leviticus, in a section dictating the re...


... middle of paper ...


... a merely a reflection of Hebrew society of the time (Stanton). Jesus Christ, being a reformer, should have improved the status of women with his message of love and acceptance. However, there is no denying that the stigma is carried with women into the present day. Women’s position in society can be greatly attributed to their depiction in religious text. Holy word is still a factor in making women more susceptible, more culpable, and more sinful an impure than men. Even as women move up in the social order, religion is timeless and ever bearing on the struggle women fight for sexual equality.


Works Cited


The Holy Bible. New York: Penguin, 1994. Print. King James Version.

Stanton, Elizabeth Cady, et al. The Woman’s Bible . Salem: Ayer Company, Publishers, 1988.

Tanner, Stephen L. Women in Literature of the Old Testament. University of Idaho, 1975.


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