proverbs 31 woman described

A Bible Verse About a Good Woman

Marvel at the deeper meanings behind the virtues of a good woman as depicted in the timeless Bible verse, Proverbs 31.

Like a lighthouse guiding ships in the night, Proverbs 31 stands as a beacon, illuminating the virtues of a good woman. You've probably encountered this verse before, heard it recited at weddings, or read it on Mother's Day.

Yet, have you ever stopped to critically examine what it really means? Beyond the surface-level praise, what deeper truths can we uncover about womanhood in this ancient text? Let's explore it together and see what insights we could glean from this biblical depiction of a virtuous woman.

Key Takeaways

  • The Proverbs 31 woman embodies virtues of industriousness, wisdom, strength, and generosity.
  • These virtues are applicable and admirable in any cultural or societal context.
  • Adjustments are needed to apply these virtues to modern socio-economic situations.
  • Emulating these virtues encourages industriousness, kindness, humility, courage, and persistence.

Understanding the Verse

interpreting poetic language deeply

Before diving into the interpretation of the Bible verse about a good woman, it's crucial to first understand the context and language used in the verse. The Bible, as you may know, was originally written in Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic. Translations can sometimes dilute the essence of the original text, thus, understanding the verse in its original context becomes essential.

The verse in question is Proverbs 31:10-31, often referred to as the 'Eshet Chayil', or the Woman of Valor. It's a hymn traditionally sung by Jewish husbands to their wives on the Sabbath eve, demonstrating respect and admiration. The passage utilizes strong, vibrant language, painting a picture of a woman who isn't just virtuous but also dynamic and proactive.

The term 'good woman' used in most English translations reflects the Hebrew term 'eshet chayil'. However, 'chayil' is a complex word with meanings ranging from 'strength' and 'ability' to 'virtue' and 'integrity'. Therefore, the term 'good woman' captures only a fraction of the whole concept. A more accurate translation might refer to a 'woman of valor' or a 'woman of strength and virtue'. The understanding of this term gives a broader perspective for the interpretation of the verse.

The Virtues of a Good Woman

appreciating a woman s qualities

Delving into the virtues of a good woman as depicted in Proverbs 31, you'll find an intricate tapestry of attributes that extend far beyond the superficial understanding of goodness. This woman of virtue isn't simply kind or generous; she's industrious, robust, and self-sacrificing.

She's a savvy businesswoman who's diligent in her work, rising early and staying late to provide for her family. She's not only a homemaker but also a home builder, creating an environment of love, security, and abundance that benefits everybody around her.

She's wise, her words are kind and full of instruction, and she's steadfast in her faith. Her strength isn't just physical but also moral and spiritual. She's resilient in the face of adversity and is confident in her future, not out of arrogance, but due to her trust in God.

She's generous to the poor and needy, not out of obligation, but out of a heart of compassion. She's respected by her husband, loved by her children, and admired by her community. In essence, the Proverbs 31 woman embodies the virtues of wisdom, work ethic, resilience, faith, generosity, and love.

Biblical Context of the Verse

exploring biblical verse interpretation

Understanding the full depth of the Proverbs 31 woman's virtues requires examining the biblical context in which her story is set. The book of Proverbs is part of the wisdom literature of the Old Testament, composed around the 10th-6th centuries BC. The Proverbs 31 woman is presented as an epitome of virtue and righteousness in the midst of a patriarchal society.

The latter part of the chapter, from verses 10-31, is an acrostic poem in Hebrew, where each verse begins with a successive letter of the Hebrew alphabet. This literary form suggests a comprehensive, ideal portrait of a virtuous woman.

The table below offers a deeper look into the biblical context of the Proverbs 31 woman:

Biblical Element
Proverbs as Wisdom Literature
These books provide practical guidance for moral, ethical, and spiritual conduct.
Patriarchal Society
The society was male-dominated, yet the Proverbs 31 woman displays wisdom, strength, and independence.
Acrostic Poem
This form suggests a comprehensive, ideal portrait of a virtuous woman.

Thus, understanding this context enriches the interpretation of the Proverbs 31 woman's virtues and their significance.

Modern Interpretations and Applications

sounds like a good summary

Navigating the complexities of the Proverbs 31 woman in a modern context requires acknowledging both the timeless wisdom and the potential cultural adjustments needed to apply her virtues today. You can't simply transplant this biblical archetype into our contemporary society without some translation. It's a process that requires careful examination and discernment.

The Proverbs 31 woman is described as industrious, charitable, and possessing a deep fear of the Lord. These qualities transcend cultural and historical boundaries and can certainly be emulated by women today. But it's also important to recognize the socio-economic realities of the time when these verses were written. The Proverbs 31 woman's productivity was largely domestic and her economic contribution was directly tied to her household activities.

In today's context, women are engaged in a wider range of economic activities outside their homes. Therefore, the modern interpretation of the Proverbs 31 woman's industriousness could be seen in women who excel in their careers, engage in community service, or contribute to their family's well-being through non-financial means. The application of this verse, then, is to celebrate the diverse ways in which women contribute to society, while maintaining the core virtues of industry, charity, and reverence for God.

Personal Reflections and Takeaways

deep thoughts and insights

Reflecting on the Proverbs 31 woman, you'll find that her virtues offer valuable lessons for contemporary life, regardless of gender or religious affiliation. This biblical depiction isn't merely an archetype or a moralistic tale, but a practical guide offering insights into character development and ethical living. Her qualities, such as diligence, generosity, wisdom, and strength, are universally applicable and worthy of emulation.

Her diligence, shown in her careful attention to her household and business affairs, encourages you to be industrious and responsible in your personal and professional life. Her generosity, reflected in her care for the poor, prompts you to be kind and compassionate. Her wisdom, evidenced by her fear of the Lord, invites you to cultivate humility and reverence. Finally, her strength, displayed in her courage and resilience, inspires you to be brave and persistent.

These reflections aren't just about individual virtues, but about an integrated, balanced life. They challenge you to excel in multiple roles, to be a well-rounded individual. They spur you on to be not just a good person, but a person of substance and depth. In essence, these takeaways from the Proverbs 31 woman can help shape your character, enrich your relationships, and enhance your life.


In conclusion, the Bible verse on a good woman is an enduring guide for virtues women should strive for. Understanding its historical context enriches its message, while modern interpretations make it relevant today.

Reflecting on this verse personally, you might find it valuable in shaping your character. Remember, being a good woman isn't about perfection, but a continuous journey of growth in virtue and faith.