The Flesh Straineth, Christ’s Love Constraineth

September 16, 2012

by Shawn Brasseaux

On what basis does the Christian life operate? The average church replies, “By keeping the Ten Commandments.” While God’s Word explicitly maintains that the Mosaic Law is “holy, and just [right before God], and good” (Romans 7:12), there is a problem—we are incompatible with God’s Law because we are naturally unholy, unjust, and bad! In this Bible study, we want to remind ourselves, “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I but Christ liveth in me….”

* * *

We can attempt to obey all Ten Commandments, but ultimately, we fail (sin) at some point. James 2:10 KJV explains: “For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.” If we so much as break one commandment of God, the Bible says that we are guilty of breaking every commandment of God. Does that sound like the life God wants for us Christians? A life of constant failure and complete misery? Then why do so many churches emphasize this type of “Christian” living? It is a failure to appreciate the Word of God dispensationally, negligence to “rightly divide the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15 KJV).

There was a time—“time past” (Ephesians 2:11)—when God instructed Israel to keep the Mosaic Law. He promised to bless them if they obeyed all of His laws, but He also swore that He would curse them if they refused to follow His laws (see Leviticus chapter 26 and Deuteronomy chapter 28). This was the religion of Judaism, a strict set of rules that governed every facet of the Jews’ daily behavior.

Religion is analogous to running on a treadmill—you had better keep moving or you will wipeout! There are literally billions of souls burdened, firmly shackled, by religious works. They strain to please God, hoping that He will accept their performance. Their religious system reassures them, “Just follow our instructions, and God will be happy with you and you will reach heaven.” What a devil’s lie, straight from hell!!

Unfortunately, not only are these lost people bound by religion, but many true Christians (those who have trusted Jesus Christ alone for salvation) believe they have to live the Christian life, that they must work to “keep fellowship with God.” Christendom abounds with this legalism: “If you want to receive God’s favor and blessings, you must give more, pray more, confess more, come to church more, quit doing ___ and start doing ___.” Again, this flawed theology is derived from a failure to understand the Bible dispensationally.

Yes, God did deal with Israel via the Mosaic Law. He did instruct them to keep His commandments so they could receive His favor and blessings (Leviticus chapter 26; Deuteronomy chapter 28). However, our apostle, Paul, writes, in our Dispensation of Grace, “For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace (Romans 6:14). Dispensational Bible study (Pauline dispensationalism) enables us to see that God—in the “but now” (Ephesians 2:13)—has abolished Israel’s performance-based acceptance system (religion) and He has replaced it with His Christ-based acceptance system (grace). Our performance is not the issue today—Christ’s performance is. Our performance is not the basis for our Christian life—Christ’s performance is.

God is not dealing with us as He dealt with Israel in time past: we are under grace, not law. Attempting to follow Israel’s Law program will only cause sin to dominate us. God’s grace-based acceptance system involves us placing our faith in Paul’s epistles, letting Christ Jesus live His life in and through us, making our Christian life pleasing to God. We would do well to memorize, meditate on, and believe the following verses, a wonderful encapsulation of the Christian life: “For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead: and that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again” (2 Corinthians 5:14,15 KJV).

In Romans chapter 7, the Apostle Paul discussed how he strained to perform the Christian life. He struggled to do right, but he would only sin instead:

“15 For that which I do I allow not: for what I would [that is, wish to do], that do I not; but what I hate, that do I….
18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.
19 For the good that I would [that is, wish to do] I do not: but the evil which I would [that is, wish to do] not, that I do….
21 I find then a law, that when I would [that is, wish to] do good, evil is present with me”

Paul is a saved man, “delighting in the law of God after the inward man” (verse 22). However, he writes:

“23 But I see another law in members [body parts], warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.
24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?
25 I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.”

Frankly, it is impossible for us weak, sinful creatures to live the Christian life. Galatians 5:17 KJV reminds us: “For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would” (cf. Romans 7:15,18,19,21). Paul finally realized that struggling under the Mosaic Law—his performance—only genders defeat and misery. Only Jesus Christ can live the Christian life: it is His life! We have victory, not in our performance, but in Christ’s performance (verse 25). Romans 8:1-4 KJV, the verses following, explain:

“1 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.
3 For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh:
4 That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”

God the indwelling Holy Spirit fulfills the Law in us Christians! This saved Paul—and saves us—from misery and defeat, our struggling to live the Christian life. We need not keep the burdensome Mosaic Law; the Holy Ghost fulfills it in us as we walk by faith in God’s Word to us!

Galatians 5:13-18 KJV supplements:

“13 For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.
14 For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
15 But if ye bite and devour one another, take heed that ye be not consumed one of another.
16 This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.
17 For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.
18 But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law.”

The Holy Spirit leads us today, and this means we are not under the Law (verse 18). When we “walk in the Spirit,” allowing the Holy Spirit to work in us, we will not sin (that is, we will not “fulfil the lust of the flesh”)

For nearly 1,600 years (Moses to Paul), Israel strained to keep the Mosaic Law. Unlike their heathen (Gentile) neighbors, the Jews had the Law of God, and other advantages (Romans 9:4,5; cf. Ephesians 2:11,12). Despite their privileged position, however, they were just as sinful as the Gentiles (non-Jews). Hence, the Gentiles observed that “God’s” people, Israel, acted just as shamefully as they did (Romans 2:17-29)!

Sinful Israel broke this Old Covenant (Mosaic Law), thus necessitating the institution of the (future) New Covenant (Jeremiah 31:31-34; Hebrews 8:7-13). If Israel, sinful sons of Adam that they were, could not keep the Mosaic Law, should we Gentiles fare any better, also being sinful sons of Adam? I trow (think) not (1 Corinthians 10:1-14)!

Actually, when believing, Law-keeping Jews (saved in Israel’s program) demanded that Paul’s Gentile believers (saved in our program) keep the Mosaic Law to be saved (Acts 15:1-5), the Apostle Peter asked (verse 10): “Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear?” Law-keeping is a burden, for no sinner can bear it!

The Apostle Paul reaffirms that Mosaic Law-keeping is a “a yoke of bondage:” Law-keeping is impossible for us sinful creatures, and this performance-based acceptance system makes void (cancels) God’s grace-based acceptance system which is in operation today in our Dispensation of Grace. When legalists (Law-keeping Jews) tried to subvert the Galatian believers by telling them to keep the Mosaic Law for salvation, Paul warned them in Galatians 5:1-4 KJV:

“1 Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.
2 Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing.
3 For I testify again to every man that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to keep the whole law.
4 Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.”

If we attempt to make ourselves acceptable to God by doing “good” works, then we ignore Christ’s perfect, finished crosswork on Calvary (the only means whereby we can be—and ultimately are—made acceptable to God, for only Jesus Christ will ever please God; Matthew 3:17). By struggling to live the Christian life (Law-keeping), we render useless Calvary’s impact on our lives, never allowing Jesus Christ to live His life (because we are too busy trying to live it).

Unlike Judaism, and contrary to popular belief, Christianity is not a system of rules and regulations. The Christian life is not us trying to “measure up” to please God—that is impossible. Once God proved that sinful mankind could never keep His Law perfectly, He introduced through the Apostle Paul’s ministry the wonderful system we now enjoy: His grace-based acceptance system, where Henot ourselves—will make us acceptable in His sight and accepted in His Son, Jesus Christ!

God, Jesus Christ, “made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: and being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross” (Philippians 2:7,8). Jesus Christ was obedient to His heavenly Father, declaring, “…the Father hathnot left me alone; for I do always those things that please him(John 8:29bc; cf. Isaiah 50:5,6). His Father, God, affirmed: “This is my beloved Son: in whom I am well pleased (Matthew 3:17).

On Calvary’s cross, the blood of God’s perfect, only begotten Son, was shed for our sins! “For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just [Jesus Christ had a right standing before God] for the unjust [we had a sinful standing before God]” (1 Peter 3:18).

We, as people who have trusted in Christ’s finished crosswork—His bloodshed, death, burial, and resurrection—alone as sufficient payment for our sins, are made acceptable in God’s sight and are accepted in His Son. Jesus Christ’s performance not only saved us from our sins, but His performance also makes our daily lives acceptable to God our Father.

In Colossians 2:6,7, we read: As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him: rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.” How did we “receive Christ Jesus the Lord?” By our works? NO! By faith in His finished crosswork on Calvary. How does our Christian walk function? By our works? NO! By faith in His finished crosswork on Calvary.

Sinful mankind could never please God, so God did for mankind what he could never do for himself: pay for his sins in full. “For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure [perhaps] for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:6-8).

This love—the love of God, “the love of Christ,” not our (feeble) love for Christ—forms the basis for our Christian life, and it “constrains” (empowers, motivates) us (2 Corinthians 5:14). Jesus Christ loved us enough to die for our sins, be buried, and be raised again the third day to make us (positionally) accepted before God (justification). “We thus judge [conclude]” that we Christians should allow Christ’s love for us to work in and through us by means of His indwelling Holy Spirit, as we walk by faith in an intelligent understanding of His Word to us (Paul’s epistles, Romans through Philemon), thereby making our lifestyles (practically) acceptable to God (practical sanctification).

As people who have trusted Jesus Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection alone as sufficient payment for our sins, Christ’s righteousness—His perfect performance—has been applied to our account (imputation). We have a right standing before God (justification): “we [have been] made the righteousness of God in Christ” (2 Corinthians 5:21). We Christians need not strain to perform in religion, seeking God’s favor and acceptance. God already accepts us in Christ, because of what He did for us on Calvary’s cross! “God hath made us accepted in the beloved [Jesus Christ]” (Ephesians 1:6).

We are not under the Mosaic Law (Romans 6:14,15), but God still cares how we live. Once we understand and rest in God’s great love for us (His sacrifice of His Son on our behalf), it transforms our thinking (today’s Scripture). Since God loves us so much, we Christians should not selfishly live our lives, doing whatever we want. We should, by faith, offer our lives to Him so He can accomplish His will in and through us. As one Christian brother says, “Jesus Christ gave His life for us, so He could give His life to us when we trust Him alone, so He could live His life through us when we trust Him alone!”

Our Christian service is us studying and believing sound Pauline Bible doctrine, and then us letting the indwelling Holy Spirit use that doctrine to work in us (1 Thessalonians 2:13) to generate “the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, unto the praise and glory of God” (Philippians 1:11). These “fruits of righteousness” are Christ living His live in us, conforming our lifestyles to our position in Him.

“I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. I do not frustrate [hinder, disrupt] the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain” (Galatians 2:20,21). We could not achieve righteousness (salvation) by our performance, and we cannot achieve righteousness (godly living) by our performance. If our performance was ever the issue (for salvation or godly living), “Christ is dead in vain [is (present tense) dead for nothing].”

Our Christian lives are really Christ’s life! “Christ liveth in me.” We live by His faithfulness, by His performance working in us. Compare “the Son of God… who loved me, and gave himself for mewith 2 Corinthians 5:14,15 KJV: “the love of Christ constraineth [motivates] us… [Christ] died for all… [Christ] died for all… [Christ] died for them.”




God’s grace—everything that He has done for us on Calvary’s cross—teaches us: “Denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly [responsibly], righteously [acceptable to God], and godly [reflecting God’s values]” (Titus 2:11,12 KJV).  We who have trusted Christ are “new creatures in Christ” (2 Corinthians 5:17). Our lives should reflect this new position/identity. God died to save us from our sins, so why should we return to them? We should let Christ Jesus live His life in and through us, “to prove that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God” (Romans 12:2 KJV). We do this by placing our faith in this sound Bible doctrine, which God uses to transform our minds, and then our lives!

“The flesh (always) straineth, Christ’s love (always) constraineth….”

Lest Satan Should Get an Advantage of Us

August 5, 2012

by Shawn Brasseaux

We as Pauline dispensationalists need to know who our adversary is, and who our adversary is not. In this Bible study, we will learn how Satan divides us, the grace believers, and how to prevent him from “getting an advantage of us.”

* * *

Even someone with a shallow understanding of the Bible knows that there is a battle between good and evil, between God and Satan. The devil and his fallen angelic cohorts are warring against God and His children, the Christians. Satan has employed perhaps the oldest military strategy—“divide and conquer”—in order to make the Christian army weaker and more susceptible to defeat.

For instance, the Church the Body of Christ can be divided into two groups: the denominationalists comprise the vast majority, while the Pauline dispensationalists constitute only a very small percentage. The denominationalists are segmented into thousands of groups, all of which claim to be “Christian.” Satan has the denominationalists under his influence because they do not understand the Bible dispensationally. They do not know what God is doing today, so they cannot do God’s will for their lives (they do not know what God’s will even is for this, the Dispensation of Grace). Fragmenting the Body of Christ into thousands of denominations, and the resulting confusion, is one of Satan’s ways of conquering God’s people.

With the denominationalists sidetracked by church tradition, we, the Pauline dispensationalists, are of particular interest to the devil’s tactics, for we know how to use God’s Word, the Bible, God’s way, and we serve as a threat to Satan’s agenda. Because we study the Bible and we know how to use it to find the answers that Satan and religion often obscure, the devil is usually unsuccessful in deceiving the local grace church with denominational doctrine. If he cannot infiltrate our local grace church with denominational teaching, then Satan will use our flesh to divide local grace church and thus discredit the message it proclaims and defends.

Let us consider 2 Corinthians 2:10,11 KJV, “To whom ye forgive any thing, I forgive also: for if I forgave any thing, to whom I forgave it, for your sakes forgave I it in the person of Christ; lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.”

The Corinthians and the Apostle Paul had forgiven someone. Who was this individual, and why was it necessary for the Christian brethren to forgive him? When Paul wrote the epistle of First Corinthians, he addressed nearly a dozen issues that disrupted Christian fellowship and hindered spiritual growth in Corinth. The problem associated with 2 Corinthians 2:10-11 is described in 1 Corinthians 5:1-5 KJV:

“1 It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have his father’s wife.
2 And ye are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he that hath done this deed might be taken away from among you.
3 For I verily, as absent in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, as though I were present, concerning him that hath so done this deed,
4 In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when ye are gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ,
5 To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.”

A Christian brother in Corinth was having sexual relations with his father’s wife, an act that not even the pagan Gentiles committed! Unfortunately, the Corinthians were bragging of this sin, making light of it, and Paul’s solution was to temporarily cast out the man from fellowship, which would hopefully bring him to his senses, and cause him to change his lifestyle:

“9 I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators:
10 Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world.
11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolator, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.”

Now, in Second Corinthians, a year or so has passed since the penning of First Corinthians. Evidently, the Corinthians had heeded Paul’s instructions by having nothing to do with the fornicator, and Paul now tells them how to go about restoring the brother to fellowship. Read 2 Corinthians 2:6-8,10,11 KJV:

 “6 Sufficient to such a man is this punishment, which was inflicted of many.
7 So that contrariwise ye ought rather to forgive him, and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one should be swallowed up with overmuch sorrow.
8 Wherefore I beseech you that you would confirm your love toward him….
10 To whom ye forgive any thing, I forgive also: for if I forgave any thing, to whom I forgave it, for your sakes forgave I it in the person of Christ;
11 Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.”

This brother had now straightened up, so the Corinthians were to forgive him, accept him, and show their love toward him, lest Satan would use bitterness and strife to further divide these Christians. Saints, we must never be ignorant of Satan’s “devices,” tactics he uses to thwart the ministry of the local grace church. May we forgive, and not “give place to the devil” by holding grudges or being bitter. Let us compare that to Ephesians 4:20-32 KJV:

“20 If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus:
21 That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts;
23 And be renewed in the spirit of your mind;
24 And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.
25 Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.
26 Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:
27 Neither give place to the devil.
28 Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth.
29 Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.
30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.
31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour [shouting, demanding, uproar], and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:
32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.”

Our sin nature—our “old man”—has been crucified with Christ (Romans 6:6). Grace teaches us to “deny ungodliness and worldly lusts, that we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world” (Titus 2:11,12 KJV). Sin does not rule us anymore: Jesus Christ has given us victory to deny sin so that is does not control us. In Christ, we can walk pleasing to the Lord, fulfilling His will.

We are to be “renewed in the spirit of [our] mind” (Ephesians 4:23 KJV). Romans 12:2 KJV affirms, “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” And Colossians 3:8-10 KJV:

“8 But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth.
9 Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds;
10 And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him:”

When we study and believe the Pauline Bible doctrine that discusses our identity in Jesus Christ—that is, when we walk by faith in an intelligent understanding of God’s Word to us (Paul’s epistles, Romans through Philemon)—then God’s Word will transform our minds for His glory (1 Thessalonians 2:13).

Returning to opening Bible passage, which mentioned forgiving a Christian brother, so that Satan would not get an advantage of the Christians (2 Corinthians 2:10,11). In Ephesians 4:26,27 KJV, we read something similar: “Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: neither give place to the devil.” There is nothing sinful about anger, if this anger is righteous and if this anger does not lead you to commit sin (cf. Matthew 5:22; Mark 3:5). It is when you do not control your anger—that is, you allow it generate bitterness and strife—that Satan will use this to isolate you from the grace saints, and vice versa. Forgiveness is necessary, especially within the confines of the local grace church, or the ministry of the church will be hindered, and it will risk the credibility of the church. This is why we read the Bible’s passages warning against bitterness and strife.

Ephesians chapter 4 concludes with: “Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour [shouting, demanding, uproar], and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: and be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you” (verses 31,32).


Saints, we must never be ignorant of Satan’s “devices,” tactics he uses to thwart the ministry of the local grace church. May we forgive, and not “give place to the devil” by holding grudges or being bitter. Let us understand that God has already forgiven us in the Person of His Son, Jesus Christ. Now, that forgiveness that we have received from God is our motivation to forgive others (Ephesians 4:32). Satan is our enemy, not our grace brethren.

Mother: A Virtuous Woman

May 13, 2012

by Shawn Brasseaux

Today is Mother’s Day, so we dedicate this Bible study to godly women (specifically mothers). I especially dedicate this to the virtuous woman who has been in my life for almost 24 years… my mom!


Proverbs 31 is often called the Bible’s “Virtuous Woman” chapter. Let us begin reading Proverbs 31 at verse 10:

“10 Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.
11 The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.
12 She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.”

The virtuous (godly) woman is priceless“her price is far above rubies”—for she is quite rare! Her husband safely trusts her. He has no need for material riches, for he is rich by having her as his wife! The virtuous woman will not harm her husband. She will submit to his headship and leadership (Ephesians 5:22-24; Titus 2:5). She will treat him with respect: as long as she lives, she will not abuse him or belittle him.

“13 She seeketh wool, and flax, and worketh willingly with her hands.”
14 She is like the merchants’ ships; she bringeth her food from afar.”
15 She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens.”
16 She considereth a field, and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard.”
17 She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms.”

The virtuous woman is a hard worker: she does not sit around and do nothing. She seeks wool and linen to sew and weave. She cooks for and feeds her household. She contemplates a field, and buys it in order to plant a vineyard. Again, the virtuous woman is not lazy: she works hard.

“18 She perceiveth that her merchandise is good: her candle goeth not out by night.
19 She layeth her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff.
20 She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy.
21 She is not afraid of the snow for her household: for all her household are clothed with scarlet.
22 She maketh herself coverings of tapestry; her clothing is silk and purple.”

According to the Bible, the virtuous woman weaves and sews to make merchandise to sell or trade. She stays up late working hard. The virtuous woman is compassionate: she pities the poor people who have little to nothing. She provides her family with clothes that keep them warm, so she does not fear snowfall. She makes herself clothing of silk and purple.

“23 Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land.”

This verse means just what it says. Her husband is famous for being married to her. She has such a distinct lifestyle that others marvel at those who know her (especially her husband!).

“24 She maketh fine linen, and selleth it; and delivereth girdles unto the merchant.
25 Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come.
26 She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.
27 She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.”

As we said regarding verses 18-22, the virtuous woman works hard. She produces goods (clothing, fabrics, et cetera) in order to sell them to make a living. What an expression—“Strength and honour are her clothing.” Strength and honor are her very nature! The virtuous woman speaks wisdom (God’s Word), and her speech is kind and gentle. She meets the needs of her household: again, she is not lazy (“[she] eateth not the bread of idleness”).

“28 Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.
29 Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all.
30 Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the LORD, she shall be praised.
31 Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates.”

The children of the virtuous woman praise her for her godly living. Her husband speaks well of her; he is proud to be her husband. The virtuous woman is a role model—she does not need to be sinless because she cannot be sinless. What is the virtuous woman, according to God’s Word? She is defined in verse 30 as “a woman that feareth the LORD.” The works of the virtuous woman praise her, for they reflect her godly beliefs and high values (her inner man).


We would also do well if we read what the Apostle Paul wrote about older Christian women and/or women who were mother-like figures to younger women. The Bible says in Titus 2:3-5 KJV:

“3 The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things;
4 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,
5 To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.”

The virtuous woman should not slander/gossip, not be controlled by alcohol and emotions (sober minded), be a teacher of good things, love her husbands and children, be cautious and modest, maintain the home, be “good,” and should obey (respect) her husband… “that the word of God be not blasphemed.”


A Christian woman, especially a mother, should be a virtuous woman in beliefs as well as in deed. She needs to set an example for her children (especially her daughters): it is her duty as an older Christian woman to set an example for younger women.

She should be a hard worker, she should meditate on the things of God (the Bible), her speech should conform to sound Bible doctrine, she should be hospitable and caring, kind and loving, she should respect and love her husband, she should love her children, and she should be modest and cautious in her actions—“that the word of God be not blasphemed.”

A Christian woman need not try to meet the Bible’s standards of womanhood/motherhood in her own strength, for she cannot meet them in her own strength. In the person of Jesus Christ, God has equipped the Christian woman to become a virtuous woman, a woman who values the things of God, and who places her faith in the Word of God.

When a Christian woman and/or Christian mother places her faith in this sound Bible doctrine, the indwelling Holy Spirit will then take that doctrine and transform her for God’s glory (1 Thessalonians 2:13). Her mind will be renewed by sound Bible doctrine, and that will transform her outward activity (Romans 12:1,2).

Are you a Christian woman or Christian mother who desires to be the woman God intends you to be in Christ Jesus? Place your faith in this sound Bible doctrine, and God will take care of the rest! Then, you will become the virtuous woman described on the pages of Scripture, thus bringing glory and honor to the great God and our Saviour the Lord Jesus Christ.