Sunday, July 26, 2015

Bible Study Week Eleven: An Acrostic

Dearest ladies, here we are in week eleven. Is the Proverbs 31 Woman becoming less of a guilt trip? Is she beginning to feel more like a friend and inspiration as you get to know her?


She certainly sets a high standard for us, but might we find it comforting to know that she is simply fearing God and, as a result, is empowered by God and is eager to devote her time and energy to serving Him and those around her? What she does is simply an outwork of who she is as a woman who fears and loves the Lord.

What we do is a manifestation of who we are in Christ and, praise God, we "can do all things in Christ who strengthens" us (Philippians 4:13). We can get out of bed and know He will give us the strength to do battle against the sin in our own hearts and the effects of sin all around us.

This week, we will be looking back at all we have studied thus far.

Let us pray for willingness to rest in God's empowering strength as we look back over all we have learned studying this chapter of Proverbs. Then, read Proverbs 31:10-31 (have you started to memorize sections yet?)

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

This passage, is a poem, an acrostic poem about the virtuous wife. Each verse starts with the next letter of the Hebrew alphabet going through it in entirety. Verse 10 begins with aleph, the first letter. Verse 11 starts with bet and so on. 



As we read this description of the wife every man should pray for and every woman should pray to become,  we are reading a complete description of her from A to Z! 

This A to Z acrostic arrangement also acts as a memory aid, giving the Jewish reciter of this poem a little clue for each verse. Because these verse have now been translated into English, we miss out on this literary structure.

This week, we will begin work on our own acrostic version of this poem. This will be a simple tool to help us remember the basic content of this passage. The goal is not necessarily an accurate paraphrase, just something to help us to remember.

Beginning with verse 10:

10 Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.



What word can we use to replace virtuous so it begins with A for our acrostic? Amazing? Awesome? Abundantly valiant? Pick a word that is memorable and speaks to you. Then move to verse 11.

11 The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.

This one might be a bit more difficult. You could substitute "Boy! The heart of her husband...." or "Booty? No need for it". I personally like using the word bosom instead of heart. I still might use booty instead of spoil though (haha!).

Remember, this is not about making light of scripture. It's about memorization and triggers. It's to consider what we have been studying and push those thoughts deeper into our brains so they might come out further in our actions. 

Continue through verse 16 keeping your acrostic on one page in your notebook. We will add more to this further into our study.




With Our Children 

Work with your children to create an acrostic for Proverbs 31:10-16

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.
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.

Help them to design a poster, chalk drawing, or book to illustrate this concept. Keep it in a safe and usable place to continue to add to in the following weeks.


Blessings in the week ahead ladies,

Audrey 



Image Credit: These all were found on Google, if I can find original sources I will post them. 

No comments:

Post a Comment