A timely and compelling new look at three key women in the biblical narrative
Among the mostly male-dominated narratives in Scripture, the stories of women can be game-changing. In this book Debbie Blue looks closely at Hagar (mother of Islam), Esther (Jewish heroine), and Mary (Christian matriarch)—and finds in them unexpected and inviting new ways of navigating faith and life.
As she sets out to explore these biblical characters who live and move in places and ways outside of the strict boundaries of tradition, Blue encounters many real life characters who challenge her expectations and renew her hope—a Muslim tattoo artist, a Saudi Arabian sculptor, a rabbi in a Darth Vader costume, Aztec dancers at a feast of Guadalupe, an Islamic feminist scholar, and more.
Readers who embark with Blue on the sometimes unorthodox, subversive paths of these curious and lively figures will be led to envision more expansive and hopeful possibilities for faith, human connection, and love in our divided, violent world.
Debbie Blue is a graduate of Yale Divinity School and one of the founding pastors of House of Mercy in St. Paul, Minnesota (once named "the Best Church for Non-Churrch goers"). Among her other books is the award-winning Consider the Birds: A Provocative Guide to Birds of the Bible.
Jana Reiss — author of Flunking Sainthood “Every time I read a book by Debbie Blue, I learn something. Here, the women of the Bible come alive, and even stories I thought I knew become fresh and dangerous. I love Blue’s sense of humor, her deep research, and above all her empathy for these biblical characters.”
Katherine Willis Pershey — author of Very Married “With her signature wit, eccentricity, and sweeping curiosity, Blue vividly imagines these ancient matriarchs in new and nuanced light. Beautifully written and meticulously researched, Consider the Women is just the book we need in a world suffused with inconsideration and misogyny.”
Alice Connor — author of Fierce “Consider the Women is part playful reminder of all the stories we’ve forgotten and part frustrated disapproval of where we’ve ended up. Blue delves deep into women who couldn’t be regulated, who didn’t recede into the background, who persevered. It’s an encouraging read in an era of physical and spiritual threat. What if, even for a moment, we consider the women?”
— Douglas Frank “With her usual relaxed humor and sly understatement, Debbie Blue imagines her three biblical matriarchs—Hagar, Esther and Mary—into full and thoroughly messy humanity. Her colorful everyday language and spunky irreverence mask her deep wisdom and the profundity of her observations and help relieve the boredom so many of us feel when we try to read the Bible.”
Publishers Weekly (starred review) "Clear, engaging, and funny. . . . Blue’s message of a female-centric rereading of scripture will resonate with academics and any general reader of Christian theology"
Word & World "I highly recommend this book as a very useful tool for either a onetime use or an ongoing study on stewardship. . . . It is a valuable tool for pastors, stewardship and finance teams, council members, and other church leaders. It is an exceptional resource for seminary students who are only offered stewardship courses as electives."
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