Soon afterwards, He began going around from one city and village to another, proclaiming and preaching the kingdom of God. The twelve were with Him, and also some women who had been healed of evil spirits and sicknesses: Mary who was called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone out, and Joanna the wife of Chuza, Herod’s steward, and Susanna, and many others who were contributing to their support out of their private means. Luke 8:1-3
We need only to look at the ministry of Jesus to understand the important role of women in furthering the gospel. This topic could easily fill the pages of a book, but a brief look at Luke 8:1-3 is a good start.
Here we learn that Mary called Magdalene, from whom seven evil spirits were removed, Joanna, the wife of a key steward of evil tetrarch Herod, and Susanna, were with him (in that day scandalous). From other scripture passages add to them Mary the mother of chosen disciple James the Less and Joses, Salome mother of “sons of thunder” James and John, Peter’s wife, and many other women from Jerusalem. This is not to mention close friends Martha and Mary who lived in Bethany.
These females not only comprised the gallery when Jesus ministered, but supported him physically and financially. When we also consider the roles of women in Jesus’ birth (Elizabeth and Mary) and burial, and their discovery of the empty tomb, not to mention Christ appearing first to Mary Magdalene, we must agree that there was equal opportunity and access if you followed him.
In Paul’s ministry I recall Priscilla the missionary, Phoebe, the deaconess and trusted messenger, Thyatira business woman Lydia who prevailed upon Paul ands Silas to stay in her home, and Philip’s four daughters who were prophetesses.
The trite phrase “where would we be without” is really an understatement when stopping to consider women in the furtherance of the gospel.
This, by the way, is my contribution to “Women’s Month.”
There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. Galatians 3:28