Were women involved in Christ’s ministry? 

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Woman in ancient Jewish religious culture

In Jewish circles of the Pharisees and Sadducee, women seem to have had no impact. The role of Jewish women in public life was minimized, although in some instances, prophets like Elisha had ministered to women and been ministered to by them. Generally, women neither received direct attention nor made a great contribution. But this was not so in the ministry of Jesus where women had an important role.  

Luke sheds light on women 

Among the four gospels, the gospel of Luke specifically alluded to the women that were associated with Christ’s ministry. Luke wrote about the many of the details of the early life of Jesus, considering the viewpoint of the women such as—Mary, Elisabeth, and Anna. He also recorded about the widow of Nain, the woman at Simon’s feast, Martha, the crippled woman, Jairus’ daughter and the sick woman healed on the same occasion.  

And in the book of Acts, Luke wrote about Sapphira, Priscilla, Drusilla, Berenice, Tabitha, Rhoda, Lydia, and other women. In so doing, he wanted to give the message that kingdom of heaven is as much for women as for men. 

The women that ministered to Christ and the disciples

The Bible tells us that, “certain women who had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities—Mary called Magdalene… and Joanna the wife of Chuza… and Susanna, and many others who provided for Him from their substance” (Luke 8:2,3). 

With the Second Galilean Tour, the needs of Christ’s ministry grew rapidly, and the group of men that traveled with Christ grew in number compared with the group who had been on the first tour. This without doubt meant more expense and work in providing food, clothing and other needs. These different needs allowed for these compassionate women to offer their resources and assistance. Thus, the material needs of Christ and His disciples were met applying the principle that “the workman is worthy of his meat” (Matthew 10:10). 

Jesus and His disciples had a common purse (John 13:29; Luke 12:6), and these women helped keep the purse full. Thus, they were seen as the first women’s missionary society of the early believers. 

Not only that but these women were close to Christ at His crucifixion and burial. They were the ones that prepared spices and burial ointments to anoint His dead body (Luke 23:55–56). And they were the ones that reported the great Resurrection news to the disciples: “Then they returned from the tomb and told all these things to the eleven and to all the rest.  It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the other women with them, who told these things to the apostles” (Luke 24:10). 

In His service,
BibleAsk Team 

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