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Is the virtuous woman in Proverbs 31 a real person?

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Do we have examples in scripture of virtuous women (Proverbs 31:10-31)? Perhaps this question implies that the "virtuous woman" of Proverbs 31 is an impossible dream, but the question is thought-provoking. Ruth had a reputation as a "virtuous woman" (Ruth 3:11), the only woman so designated. The word means strength, efficiency, and, in this case, moral wealth primarily. Proverbs 31 is King Lemuel's mother's teaching (verse 1). Some suggest Lemuel, meaning "for God," is another name for Solomon. Did she use this name to impress on Solomon that her highest ambition was that he would be "for God"? How instructive for mothers today! Could it be then that his mother told him to find a wife like his great-great-grandmother, Ruth? How sad he didn't take his mother's advice! We may not have enough information to induct some Bible women into this "Hall of Virtue," but some of the many worthy candidates are Mary (the Lord's mother), both Mary and Martha of Bethany, Hannah, Abigail, ... more
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