Not every woman in the Bible is as well known as Mary or Eve. In this article, you will encounter a few relatively unknown women, including one who successfully displays great ambition without offending her male counterparts.
Appearing in two books of the Bible, Achsah offers a picture of a woman who is filled with great ambition. Many women mentioned in the Bible are not connected to contributing to the family on a financial level. However, Achsah is an exception. The first time she appears in text is when she is identified as the daughter of Caleb, and that she has been given as a reward to the warrior who captures the city of Kiriath-sepher.
In Joshua 15:16-19, it states ‘Othniel son of Kenaz, the brother of Caleb, took it; and he gave him his daughter Achsah as wife. When she came to him, she urged him to ask her father for a field. As she dismounted from her donkey, Caleb said to her, ‘What do you wish?’ She said to him, ‘Give me a present; since you have set me in the land of the Negeb, give me springs of water as well.’ So Caleb gave her the upper springs and the lower springs.’
Achsah transforms a situation where she is given as a prize into gaining land for herself. While some people view this tale as a woman’s way of ‘taking advantage’ of a weak man, the Bible does not portray Achsah in this manner. There is no indication that she has crossed the line in dealing with the males in her life , one of which is a mighty warrior that commands his own group of men. She simply decided that she wanted land, asked for it, and was granted it.
Other relatively unknown women who appear in the Bible include:
Jael: As mentioned in Judg. 4:17-22, Jael is known as the wife of Heber the Kenite. After the defeat of the Canaanities, the captain of Jabin’s army, Sisera, fled and looked for a safe place to stay amongst the welcoming tribe of Heber. As he came close, Jael invited him to enter her tent. He responded to her invitation by entering her tent, where he fell into a deep sleep upon her floor. In her hands, she took a nail and mallet and drove the nail through Sisera’s temples. She then led Barak (the man who had defeated the Canaanites and was looking for Sisera) to her tent and boastfully shown him what she had accomplished.
Vashti: After refusing to obey the king when he wished for her to appear in the banqueting hall of Shushan the palace, this queen of Ahasuerus was deposed from her royal position as told in Esther 1:10-12.
Orpah: As told in Ruth 1:4 and 4:10, this Moabitess was the wife of Chilion, who after the death of her husband, she accompanied her mother-in-law Naomi during part of her journey to Bethlehem, and then returned to Moab.