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Religion Professor Releases Book About Notable Women in the Bible

Oklahoma City University religion professor Lisa Wolfe released her new book Ruth, Esther, Song of Songs and Judith.”

The book is a commentary that serves as a companion to Wolfe’s Bible Study DVDs titled “Uppity Women of the Bible.” It focuses on four major Biblical books where women play significant roles.

“These 'uppity women' pursued survival, heroism and love, and did not allow cultural mores to stop them,” Wolfe said.  “They not only teach us about the varied lives of biblical women, but their compelling stories also comfort and challenge contemporary readers.  Through dialogue with Ruth, Esther, Song of Songs and Judith, I explore issues of community, power, sexuality, violence and the surprising manifestations of divine compassion. It has been a massive but rewarding project for the past eight years.”

Wolfe gives scholarly commentary on each book and draws connections between the world of ancient audiences and present-day readers. Ruth was a foreign widow whose eyebrow-raising encounter on a barley threshing floor served as a valiant effort to support her mother-in-law. Esther was a Jewish orphan who became queen of Persia, then put her life at risk by telling King Ahasuerus about a plot to massacre all Jews in the kingdom. In Song of Songs, a proud and alluring lover claims her sexuality as her own and joyfully shares it with her beloved. Judith was a pious and beautiful widow who lets the enemy commander’s appetite become his downfall in order to save her besieged city.

In a book review, Thomas B. Dozeman of the United Theological Seminary stated, “In her study of Ruth, the Moabite daughter-in-law, Esther, the Jewish queen, ra‘yati, the young lover, and Judith, the warrior, Lisa Wolfe takes us on a journey through tales about rags-to-riches, the triumph of the underdog, romance, and a widow warrior that challenge traditional gender roles and will keep us reading for more.”

Ruth, Esther, Song of Songs and Judith” is published by Wipf and Stock Publishers. For more information, visit the link: