For over 38 years of preaching I have never stopped and looked up what a “virtuous” woman is by the Bible definition. I looked up Proverbs 31.10, “the virtuous woman” and I was very surprised at the Bible definition!

I confess I always saw this “woman” by the single, narrow interpretation the KJV translators gave us. Virtue: morally good behavior (Merriman-Webster dictionary).

Here is what the original language gives us when they translate this Hebrew word “Chayil“, When Chayil is translated, it is translated as …
army 56 times
man of valour 37 times
host 29 times
forces 14 times
valiant 13 times
strength 12 times
riches 11 times
wealth 10 times
power 9 times
substance 8 times
might 6 times
strong 5 times
miscellaneous translations 33 times
[Total Count: 243]

from (chuwl); probably a force, whether of men, means or other resources; an army, wealth, virtue, valor, strength :- able, activity, (+) army, band of men (soldiers), company, (great) forces, goods, host, might, power, riches, strength, strong, substance, train, (+) valiant (-ly), valour, virtuous (-ly), war, worthy

Sounds like she was a woman of force, energy, capable, moral, strong, powerful, and a woman of substance in many many ways.

Maybe now we can now salute the forceful powerful women of the Bible without qualifying. Only one woman in scripture is called virtuous…Ruth!

So to these women who proved to be such a force in their world: Ruth….Sarah…Rachel…Hannah…Bathsheba…Mary…Martha…Phoebe….Priscilla…I salute you!

A virtuous woman is more than just moral!

She is a powerful force to be reckoned with.

Thanks for reading today….

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