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Comment: Publisher: Pilgrim
Date of Publication: 1999
Binding: soft cover
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Bad Girls of the Bible Paperback – 1999

15 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Pilgrim (1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1578569710
  • ISBN-13: 978-1578569717
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,491,465 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Barbara Essex grew up in Chicago, IL, and has lived in a number of cities throughout the US. Her interest in storytelling and the Bible has led to a study series focusing on biblical characters we love...and love to hate. Her third book, "Bad Boys of the Bible: Exploring Men of Questionable Virtue," won The Pilgrim Press Mayflower Award for Spirituality in 2003. Essex is a sought-after speaker and is known for her wit and down-to-earth style. She connects the biblical story with contemporary life, drawing on her vast personal experiences. She currently lives in Cleveland, OH.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Keisha Simmons on January 11, 2004
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
There is some confusion because there are two books with the same title. Bad Girls of the Bible by Barbara Essex is terrific! She uses sound biblical interpretation to help us uncover the "real" story of infamous biblical women. She goes beneath the surface and uses history, archeology and other tools to get at the heart of the women's stories. She doesn't berate them, but helps us see their more positive qualities even though they are being used to move the biblical story forward. This book is fabulous!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Gloria on January 20, 2012
Format: Paperback
I, along with the women from my church, thoroughly enjoyed this book! We learned about women from the Old Testament and gained new insights on familiar ones. We especially appreciated Ms. Essex's "Biblical Interpretative Tools." It was like having a mini seminary class. All of my life I thought that Jezebel was a prostitute or a slut. The term, "You old Jezebel" was the worst term that one could say about a woman. Even though Jezebel was a terribly devious person, Ms. Essex taught us about Jezebel's background and put her story into perspective. We were able to see Jezebel through another lens and discuss how God used her in God's divine plan. The questions in each chapter are also very engaging. I highly recommend this book.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By S. Johnson on September 21, 2012
Format: Paperback
Bad Girls of the Bible is a very powerful book. Barbara Essex's writing style is very digestible and easy to read. Her analysis of familiar Bible figures forces the reader to rethink their perception of those people. She dissects 12 very popular and reviled women of the Bible, starting with Eve and ending with Sapphira. Each "Bad Girl" story begins with contextual background of the events surrounding the story. Rev. Essex has an unbelievable grasp of the situations that introduce us to the ladies. If you don't like the conclusions drawn by Essex, it is hard to deny that your understanding of the Bible is improved by this book. The ladies chosen have had pretty "bad" reputations for many, many years. However, some of them have been obvious victims of a male-dominated clergy that has been known to portray women unfavorably. We have heard these stories from preachers in the pulpit for since we were children, without ever questioning them or looking at the scripture. But this book requires you to actually READ the Bible, read the text and go from there.

Rev. Essex makes it a point to humanize each woman and infers some other things that may have been active in the women's lives that led them to this point. Sometimes, she goes out of her way to defend the actions of some (like Herodias), while some we are left wondering about (like the adulterous woman). Certainly, we can all agree that there have been gross mischaracterizations of a lot of women in the Bible. One well known misconception is that of Jezebel. Her name is synonymous with "floozy" or "tramp", but her story is nothing of the kind. She was a queen who was preparing herself for an obvious and predicted death. She was a warrior and defender for her god, Baal.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Addell Anderson on September 17, 2012
Format: Paperback
I recently participated in a Bible study class in which Barbara Essex's book, Bad Girls of the Bible, was used as the primary text. After completing the course, I can truthfully say the book challenged my understanding of the Bible in ways I never thought possible. While I did not agree with all of the author's contentions, the study compelled me to become a more precise and critical reader of the Bible than I was previously. In the end, such scrutiny helped to deepen my faith and instilled a desire to read more of Essex's thought-provoking books.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful By JessicaK on April 18, 2009
Format: Paperback
Spiritually misguided- in your point of view, maybe. Jezebel was very religiously committed- just not to your religion. In defense of Jezebel, how many people of different faith did your God command the Israelites to kill? Please tell me, why is Jezebel any worse for defending her religion?

This book is good for an audience that wants an enlighted, factual understanding of the historically "bad" women of the Bible.
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This book was required reading for a class and was the focus of discussion on the topic. This book held a prespective that allowed many interesting thought provoking questions and responses for the members of the class. It was an excellent choice for the class and is inspiration for reading the follow-up book. The author does a good job of presenting the delinmas of the ladies identified in the book.
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I have been using the series in a Bible study group for the past year or so. The author of this book gives a fresh perspective on these Biblical characters. The author builds quite a story out of a few words with which the character is mentioned.
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By aree on May 5, 2015
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Some good examples. However not all actions described can be considered done intentionally to be a determination of what is bad. Good reading and interpretations by author.
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