Series: The Powerful Influence of a Godly Woman (Kay Arthur)
Nancy Leigh DeMoss: Well, Kay Arthur is no stranger to many in our listening audience, and as the founder of Precept Ministries, she’s been a guest a number of times on Revive Our Hearts in the past. I am so thankful for the way that God has used this woman over many years to teach women how to study the Word of God for themselves.
I’m so thankful that Kay was able to be with us at the True Woman conference in Fort Worth last month where she shared a message that God used in a very significant way in the lives of those women.
Now as you hear this message, it will be helpful to know that the women who were at the conference received a white hanky when they arrived at True Woman. Each of those hankies was inscribed with the words, “Yes, Lord.” We asked the women to wave those hankies like a white flag of surrender any time that something was said that they particularly wanted to respond to by saying, “Yes, Lord, I hear what You said, and I’m wanting to respond in surrender to Your truth.”
So you’re going to hear Kay refer to those white flags from time to time. Even if you don’t literally have a white hanky handy, I hope you’ll be saying, “Yes, Lord,” in your heart as we listen to Kay Arthur.
Kay Arthur: My question today—God’s question today—is what kind of a woman do you want to be? Because you have a choice. Proverbs 14, verse 1, says this: “The wise woman builds her house.” And that is our home, that is our structure, but putting it with us today, our house is His temple. And a “wise woman builds her house, but the foolish tears it down with her own hands.”
Precious one, the time for you to decide what kind of a woman you want to be is now. It is now. Life is not going to get easier. It is going to become more and more difficult. I believe with all my being that America is under the judgment of God. We have believed a lie. We have not given ourselves . . . I see the white hankies. We have not given ourselves to the Word of God. We have entangled ourselves with the affairs of this life, and we have forgotten that we are on the front lines and we are to please Him who has called us to be a soldier.
We have become lax. Our successes and defeats as women are written in His Word. And it all began with a woman. It began with Eve. Eve who believed the lie of the serpent. Eve who believed that she could know good and evil, that she could make her own decisions and that really God was holding out on her. That’s why He didn’t want her to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. She took the fruit of the tree. She ate it. She gave it to Adam, and Romans 5:12 says, “By one man sin entered into the world.”
From the Genesis account of Sarah, the wife of Abraham, the wife of Abraham who hoped in God. The wife of Abraham who obeyed her husband. The wife of Abraham—and you want to write this Scripture down, 1 Peter chapter 3, verses 5 and 6. The wife of Abraham—now listen carefully—who did what was right without being frightened by any fear.
Sarah was a courageous woman. Sarah believed God and if we had time, we could go into her life and learn many, many principles. But what I want you to see is from the beginning, from the first book of the Bible, Genesis all the way through to the book of Revelation, chapter 19, what we see is the great influence of women.
I want you to turn in your Bibles to Revelation chapter 19, and I want you to see in that chapter two women—the contrast of two women. One that is foolish and one because of her foolishness is destroyed, and one that is wise. In Revelation chapter 19, speaking of Babylon—mystery Babylon, the mother of harlots typified as a woman. It says in verse 2, “Because His judgments are true and righteous; for He [God] has judged the great harlot who was corrupting the earth with her immorality.”
I want you to know as I stand before you, and I’m not proud of it, but I am all right with it because I know what the blood of Jesus Christ does. I understand grace, and I understand redemption, and I understand forgiveness, and I understand that when Jesus hung on that cross, He paid for my sins once for all, and there is no more sacrifice for sin. I see the white handkerchiefs. There is no more sacrifice for sin, and I know that.
But I will tell you that up until the age of 29 when I received Jesus, I corrupted families, and I corrupted men, and I corrupted my children, and I corrupted me because of my immorality.
She is a great harlot who was corrupting the earth with her immorality, and it says, “And He [God] . . .” I want you to hear this. I want you to understand His justice. I want you to understand His righteousness. I want you to understand His holiness. I want you to understand that He may love you with every fiber of His being and He has, but like the rich, young ruler, He will let you walk away if you don’t come to God on God’s terms.
And this is what He says: “He has avenged the blood of His bondservants on her. And a second time they said, ‘Hallelujah!’ Her smoke rises up forever and ever.” But contrast that woman with the Bride of Jesus Christ. Verse 7, it says, “Let us rejoice and be glad and give glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His Bride [now watch] has made herself ready. It was given to her to clothe herself in fine linen, bright and clean; for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.”
It’s the righteousness of the saints. You and I need to decide what kind of a woman we are going to be because you and I from this point on are getting our bridal gown ready, and we are doing it by our righteousnesses, by our righteous acts.
So what you see from Genesis and the account of Sarah to Revelation 19, these two women, you can see the influence of those women who are not women of faith and those who are true women of God.
So my question comes to you again. What kind of a woman do you want to be? God has given you everything in Christ Jesus that you need in order to be the woman that is the Bride of Christ who is beautifully adorned for her husband when He comes in all of His glory.
In Psalm 68:11-12 it tells us this, that a woman who proclaims good things, who holds her post in the home reaps the spoils of victory. Do you want to be that kind of a woman? Listen to what it says. “The Lord gives the command; the women who proclaim the good tidings are a great host: kings of armies flee, they flee, and she who remains at home will divide the spoil.”
Like it or not, God has ordained that the home is the domain of the woman and that she is to be the worker of the home, and she is to be the keeper of the home. Do you want to be women who are at ease, complacent about the Lord, not listening to the Word of God?
You’re too busy; you’ve got too much to do. Women engaged in the culture thinking that you can step and live in the midst of that crooked and perverse generation without holding forth the Word of Life as He says. As a consequence just seeping and standing in it, you in turn are touched.
In Isaiah chapter 32, you want to write it down, verses 9-13, listen to what he says. “Rise up, you women who are at ease, and hear my voice; give ear to my word, you complacent daughters. Within a year and a few days you will be troubled.” Listen, it was in the days when Isaiah was prophesying of the coming judgment of God because Israel had played the harlot, because Israel had turned her back on God, because Israel had lifted up her skirts to every passerby.
And so He says, listen to me you complacent daughters. “Within a year and a few days you will be troubled, O complacent daughters; for the vintage is ended, and the fruit gathering will not come. Tremble, you women who are at ease; be troubled, you complacent daughters; strip, undress and put sackcloth on your waist, beat your breasts for the pleasant fields, for the fruitful vine, for the land of my people in which thorns and briars shall come up; yea, for all the joyful houses and for the jubilant city.”
Right now in the days of Isaiah things were going great, and they thought they had it made—just like us before the crash came. They didn’t know what was coming, and God had laid it on my heart to tell people and to warn people that God hates idolatry. He is going to pull the economic rug right out from the feet of America and put us on our faces because Colossians 3 says greed is idolatry.
But we don’t think it’s going to happen to us because we have a wrong concept of God. Listen to me carefully. Judgment is on the horizon. It cannot be—listen, listen, listen, women! It cannot be life as usual. We need to cry for God’s Spirit to be poured out on us from on high.
Do not be a foolish woman who in her bitterness because life didn’t go her way urged her husband to let go of integrity and curse God and die. Who is that woman? You know if you know the Word of God. You know it’s Mrs. Job. And you know when their whole world fell in, she just looked at Job and she said, “Why do you continue in your integrity? Curse God and die.”
And listen to his response to his wife. “But he said to her, you speak as one of the foolish women speaks. Shall we indeed accept good from God and not accept adversity.” But God is sufficient. His power is perfected in our weakness. His sovereignty rules over all, and He is equipping us and refining us and getting us ready to meet the Lord and not be ashamed when we see Him at His coming.
So I want to ask you another question. Are you a woman seeking love? Are you looking for it wherever you can find it? Are you taught and tutored by wicked women rather than godly women? Do you get your philosophy of life from Oprah? Do you get your philosophy of life from The View? Do you get your philosophy of life from the magazines and the culture that are telling you and magazine cover after magazine cover how to have sex another way and how to do this, how to do anything but be righteous?
He says in Jeremiah chapter 2, verses 33-36, “How well you prepare your way to seek love! Therefore even the wicked women you have taught your ways.” He says, “Also on your skirts is found the lifeblood of the innocent poor; you did not find them breaking in. But in spite of all these things, yet you said, ‘I’m innocent.’”
How well you prepare your way
To seek love!
Therefore even the wicked women
You have taught your ways.
Also on your skirts is found
The lifeblood of the innocent poor;
You did not find them breaking in.
But in spite of all these things,
Yet you said, ‘I am innocent;
Surely His anger is turned away from me.’
Behold, I will enter into judgment with you
Because you say, ‘I have not sinned.’
Why do you go around so much
Changing your way?
Also, you will be put to shame by Egypt
As you were put to shame by Assyria.
God knows your heart. There’s no hiding from God. If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, He’s there. If I descend into the darkness, even there the light is bright about me. There is no hiding from God. He says, “Yet you said, ‘I’m innocent; surely His anger is turned away from me.’” And God says, “Behold, I will enter into judgment with you because you say [now listen], ‘I have not sinned.’”
We are living in a time and age when people do not understand sin. We are a nation that has lost our biblical moorings. We don’t know right from wrong. We do not know what the absolutes of God are. We have diluted Him and made Him a mamby pamby God that is not righteous and is not just, and you cannot do that to Him. Don’t be a foolish woman.
Or as Proverbs 6 and 7 says, are you a woman on the hunt; an evil, adulteress in pursuit of a man? Who is your house, your bed, the way to Sheol, the way to grave? Have you by your immorality, by your adultery reduced a man to nothing more than the price of a loaf of bread? That’s what Proverbs 6 and 7 talks about when it talks about the evil woman, the adulteress woman. Do you dress like a harlot? It talks about her attire as the attire of a harlot.
Are you a woman that worships at the shrine of expediency? The world sets your agenda, not God, because you bowed the knee to the feminist movement that began in the 60s, and you won’t let it go. It’s a rational matter of expediency rather than faith. That’s what your life is. Is that your life?
Expediency. “I don’t have time for in-depth Bible study.” I’m so sick of hearing that! I’m so sick of older women telling younger women, “Oh, you’ve got to raise your children.” Now listen, that is the time to be studying the Word of God and going deeper and learning it inductively so that you know truth for yourself, so that you’re steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, not turning to the right and not turning to the left but observing to do according to all that God has commanded us.
Precious ones, listen to Jeremiah 7, verse 18. It says, “The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead dough to make cakes for the queen of heaven; and they pour out drink offerings to other gods in order to spite Me.” God is talking about His people, Israel. God is talking about Israel who He calls His wife.
God is talking about a nation that He has given clear commandments to and the first one is, “I am the Lord. I am a jealous God. You shall have no other gods before Me. You shall not create any image in the heaven above, in the earth beneath or under the earth. You shall not worship them nor bow down to them.” And here they are making cakes to the queen of heaven.
So later in Jeremiah you read this in Jeremiah 44, verses 15-17: “All the men who were aware that their wives were burning sacrifices to other gods, along with all the women who were standing by, as a large assembly, including all the people who were living in Pathros in the land of Egypt . . .” Where they had been sent because of their disobedience to God. Well, they weren’t sent there. They went there in disobedience to God. Saying this, “As for the message you have spoken to us in the name of the LORD, we are not going to listen to you!”
I want to ask you a question. Do you have ears to hear what the Spirit of God is saying to the churches? Have you even opened the book so that you know what God is saying to the churches?
They go on to say, “But rather we will certainly carry out every word that has proceeded from our mouths.” In other words, the Word of man has precedence over the Word of God. And they say, “by burning sacrifices to the queen of heaven and pouring out drink offerings to her, just as we ourselves, our forefathers, our kings and our princes did in the city of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem.”
Now catch this last line. “For then we had plenty of food and were well off and saw no misfortune.” God allows us to go through trials. It’s the trial of our faith that proves the reality and the genuineness of our faith. And if you’re going to go just by when you are blessed, then you are listening to the wrong message on TV. But the problem is people don’t know it, and they don’t understand it because they don’t know the Word of God.
Nancy: Tomorrow we’ll hear part two of this message from Kay Arthur that was delivered at the True Woman conference last month in Forth Worth, Texas. I remember sitting on the front row at that convention center as Kay delivered that message. As I listened to her speak, it was clear to me that God was doing something important in that auditorium. There was just a real sense of conviction and the weight of her words sinking into people’s hearts.
We had a full schedule planned for the rest of that Friday morning, but I sensed a need at the end of her message to just pause and let those words sink in. It’s just too easy to hear a message like this and say, “Wow, what a great message,” without actually stopping to respond to the Lord.
So I want to take a moment to ask you some of the questions that I asked at the end of Kay’s message at that conference.
- Have you been a foolish woman in any ways?
- Have you perhaps torn down your home or your marriage rather than building them up?
- Maybe there’s some inappropriate or immoral relationship that you’re involved in right now, whether physical or emotional, perhaps in the work place, perhaps on the Internet.
Whatever it is, would you respond to the conviction of God’s Spirit today? Would you say, “Yes, Lord,” in your heart, and confess that sin to God?
Let me encourage you to find another woman that you know who loves the Lord and share with her what God has been saying to your heart. Then by God’s grace repent of that sin and begin to take steps of obedience.
O Lord, how I pray that You will have Your way in each of our hearts. Holy Spirit, please move us past the place of just listening to a message like this, to a place of full, whole-hearted surrender to Christ as Lord. I ask in Jesus’ name, amen.
Used with Permission. Revive Our Hearts