Are There Any Female Prophetesses in the Bible?
The Bible contains many prophets, both male and female. Some of the most important prophetesses of the Bible were women. Miriam was a prophetess and sister of Moses and Aaron. She aided the Israelites in their crossing of the Red Sea. She played a tambourine and sang for them. Her singing echoed Moses’ song.
The biblical account of Priscilla the female prophet reveals an interesting story about a woman who is called to be a prophet by God. Though most women in the ancient world were not employed, she had skills in theology, hospitality, and tent making, and God used her gifts to help many people find God. The biblical account also shows that God often chooses outcasts, misfits, and women to bring others to him.
Priscilla and Aquila are described in the New Testament as strengthening the early Christian churches. Paul acknowledges their influence and credits them with instructing Apollos, a prominent evangelist of the first century. Though Apollos was a persuasive speaker, he did not know the entire story about Jesus.
Although Priscilla was a prophet, the church often neglected her gifts. Nevertheless, she was in Rome when Paul wrote his famous letter, Romans 16. Romans 16 is known as a ‘picture gallery’ of New Testament believers. One-third of greetings in the book are addressed to women. The apostle Paul was an innovator in the recognition of women in Christian service.
While she appears only in nine verses in the Hebrew Bible, Huldah is an important figure. As a prophet, she spoke directly to kings and royal officials and gave them important information about their future. She also had the authority to determine whether the Law of God was genuine. When acting as a prophet, she commanded her people in stern tones. However, the Bible does not give us much information about Huldah’s background.
The Bible does not specify when Huldah first appeared in the Bible, but we do know that she was related to the male prophet Jeremiah. This makes it more likely that Huldah would intervene on behalf of Josiah, since she was his relative.
The Bible includes many examples of women who were prophets, including the fourth judge of Israel, Deborah. This prophet was directed by the Lord when she went into battle to help the kingdom be freed from a foreign king. As a result, the Lord gave Deborah the right to say, “I am a mother in Israel.” Huldah lived during the reign of the righteous king Josiah (640 B.C.) and was a prophetess, speaking to the people about their hope for a Messiah. She is also called a prophetess by Isaiah.
Priscilla and Aquila are two women who have been mentioned in the Bible. They were married and lived in Rome, where Priscilla converted to Christianity. Then, after being thrown out of Rome by Claudius, the couple travel to Corinth in Greece and later to Syria, where they meet the apostle Paul. In the Bible, Aquila and Priscilla are mentioned in passing, but their role in the church is not fully understood.
Priscilla was a good reader as a child and became a respected teacher in the early church. Later, she and Aquila joined the apostle Paul on missionary journeys. Together, they pioneered the church and trained other pastors. They also boldly shared the gospel while traveling the world.
As a Christian, Priscilla had direct access to God. Because of her newfound faith in Christ, she could share her faith with others. She was even able to host a house church for believers. Moreover, she supported Paul’s ministry and taught the gospel to other women. She and her husband also moved their business to be near Paul.
While women are often not given leadership positions in the Bible, the prophet Deborah was called to an important role by God, as a judge and a prophetess. Deborah was also an effective spokesperson for God. She even led Barak into a war zone, and is one of the few biblical women to be called a prophet. According to Hebrew scholar Robert Alter, Deborah is notable for playing two roles in the Bible: judge and prophet.
Because of her wisdom and heart for justice, Deborah was trusted by her people. She had a strong conviction in God and was known for making wise decisions. She gained the hearts of her people by speaking the truth boldly and judging fairly. Her courage and confidence in God made her an excellent judge and she was sought after to settle disputes.
During the battle, Deborah called an Israelite warrior named Barak, who was her junior. Barak’s name means lightning, and he would strike only when instructed by Deborah. Deborah instructed Barak to take 10,000 troops to Mount Tabor, which was where Jabin’s general had sent 900 iron chariots.