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"A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband..." Proverbs 12:4
Much has been said about the woman of Proverbs 31, but what did King Lemuel say about her that really makes her special to her husband and in the sight of God. Read first Proverbs 31:10-31.
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.
The virtues of this woman are commendable, but in the final analysis, only one virtue really stands out that matters. She is "a woman that feareth the Lord." vs. 30. King Solomon summed it all up when he said, "Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man" Ecclesiastes 12:13. The footnotes in the Amplified Bible give us some good insights concerning this virtuous woman.
"It is most unfortunate that this description of God's ideal woman is usually confined in readers' minds merely to its literal sense, her ability as a homemaker, as in the picture of Martha of Bethany in Luke 10:38-42. But it is obvious that far more than that is meant. When the summary of what makes her value ‘far above rubies’ is given (in Proverbs 31:30), it is her spiritual life only that is mentioned. One can almost hear the voice of Jesus saying, ‘Mary has chosen the good portion ... which shall not be taken away from her’ (Luke 10:42).
"‘Many daughters have done ... nobly and well ... but you excel them all.’ What a glowing description here recorded of this woman in private life, this ‘capable, intelligent, and virtuous woman’ of Proverbs 31! It means she had done more than Miriam, the one who led a nation's women in praise to God (Exodus 15:20, 21); Deborah, the patriotic military advisor (Judges 4:4-10); Ruth, the woman of constancy (Ruth 1:16); Hannah, the ideal mother (I Samuel 1:20; 2:19); the Shunammite, the hospitable woman (II Kings 4:8-10); Huldah, the woman who revealed God's secret message to national leaders (II Kings 22:14); and even more than Queen Esther, the woman who risked sacrificing her life for her people (Esther 4:16).
"In what way did she ‘excel them all’? In her spiritual and practical devotion to God, which permeated every area and relationship of her life. All seven of the Christian virtues (II Peter 1:5) are there, like colored threads in a tapestry. Her secret, which is open to everyone, is the Holy Spirit's climax to the story, and to this book. In Proverbs 31:30, it becomes clear that the ‘reverent and worshipful fear of the Lord,’ which is ‘the beginning (the chief and choice part) of Wisdom’ (Proverbs 9:10), is put forth as the true foundation for a life which is valued by God and her husband as ‘far above rubies or pearls’ (Proverbs 31:10)."
— Source Unknown
(Scripture footnotes taken from THE AMPLIFIED BIBLE, Copyright © 1954, 1958, 1962, 1964, 1965, 1987 by The Lockman Foundation. All rights reserved. Used by permission.)