- Paperback: 296 pages
- Publisher: Baker Academic; Reprint edition (July 1, 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0801045711
- ISBN-13: 978-0801045714
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 15.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 7 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,645,225 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Jeroboam's Wife: The Enduring Contributions of the Old Testament's Least-Known Women Paperback – July 1, 2009
The Amazon Book Review
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About the Author
Robin Gallaher Branch (Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin) is professor of Bible and theology at Victory University in Memphis, Tennessee. She was a Fulbright scholar and previously served as an associate professor at the University in Potchefstroom, South Africa.
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What is interesting is how she takes seemingly non-descript women in the Bible and shows that without their deliberate participation in various plots, there would be no plot. E.g., Moses would never have become the leader of the Exodus had he not been saved by a slave girl -- a quick thinker and a "mover and shaker" in her own unique way.
These women came from various backgrounds --a king's wife, sister of Moses, a slave girl, a concubine. They each faced a crisis. Some responded to the crisis with faith, some with wisdom, some with treachery.
I recommend this book for a women's Bible study. Dr. Branch includes thought-provoking questions at the end of each chapter. She uses many sources, Jewish tradition, Jewish sources, scholars, and common sense.
One woman, known only as "the wise woman of Abel Beth Maacah," bargains with the Israeli army general who is planning to attack her city. Since the general really wanted only one man, she agrees to throw the man's
head over the wall, and thus save her city.
One unnamed woman is known only by her actions (the wife of Jeroboam).
Dr. Branch is a creative writer, who uses the cultural and historical background to show how God used these women to accomplish important things.
they are largely ignored. Often sermons come forth from the same
few verses and themes, and often they are based on truisms and
cliches and not the author's or the preacher's careful and
incisive exploration of the text.
Dr. Robin's Gallaher Branch's book, "Jeroboam's Wife: The Enduring
Contribution of the Old Testament's Least Known Women" looks at
material rarely examined and looks at it in a fresh and insightful way.
She examines women in the Old Testament that are only briefly
mentioned, but ones that have much to offer us. Who would have
seen that the wise women of Abel Beth Maacah (2 Samuel 20) would
have so much to say to contemporary women (and men!)as they seek
to bring godly council into difficult circumstances?
Who would have seen signs of an abusive marital relationship
in the story of Jeroboam's wife (I Kings 14)? This chapter
is particularly insightful in dealing with the passivity and
despair that abuse brings while offering hope that God
both sees and acts in the life of the abused and
downtrodden . She brings to light that God often begins His
work of reconciliation and salvation in the broken places!
This book is well researched, accessible, and lets the
biblical text bring forth what it has to say without
added political agenda. Women have a place in God's
saving history and, while their place is often ignored
or forgotten, it is there in startling and inspiring ways,
if we but take a closer look.
The book also has questions for personal discussion
or group study and is a substantial contribution in
the conservative tradition to women's biblical studies.
--Rose-Marie Slosek, Board of Directors, Women of the
The five women and two girls are l)Miriam, sister of Moses; 2) Rizpah, daughter of Aiah; 3) Athaliah, queen of Judah; 4)the wise woman of Abel Beth Maacah; 5) the wife of Jeroboam; 6) a Gentile widow in Zarephath; and 7) an Israelite slave girl.
Dr Branch's analysis of the stories not only shows them to be more significant than a simple reading of them would indicate but also very much more interesting and intriguing. She is very perceptive and imaginative and reveals herself to be thoroughly versed in the Old Testament and the Hebrew language. She is also well acquainted with the literature dealing with her subject and plows new ground in the area, making a very significant contribution to the literature.
She also makes use of literature not dealing directly with the Old Testament scripture. For example, in her analysis of whether Jeroboam's wife was abused by her husband she cites a number of sources dealing with abusive relationships -- for example, a source citing the traits of an abuser.
For her notes to be more convenient to the reader I personally would prefer footnotes rather than endnotes.
A valuable plus are the excellent and thought-provoking questions at the end of each chapter.
Charles E. Ratliff, Jr.