The Christian Bible has a message that is relished by many Christian men and women--that wives should submit to their husbands, the head of the home. On the approach to Mother's Day, we visit 1 Esdras from The Apocrypha Of The Old Testament for a short treatise on the strength of women. The Apocrypha was part of the King James Version of The Bible published in 1611. Rejected for inclusion in the Canon Christian Bible, The Apocrypha was recognized by some Protestant groups as enlightening for building moral and religious knowledge.
ON THE STRENGTH OF WOMEN 1 Esdras 4: 13-34. (With minor pronoun & other changes.)
"Then the third, who had spoken of women, and of the truth, (this was Zerubbabel) began to speak. O you men, it is not the great king, nor the multitude of men, neither is it wine, that excels; who is it then that rules them, or has lordship over them? are they not women?
Women have borne the king and all the people that bear rule by sea and land. Even of them came they; and they nourished them up that planted the vineyards, from whence the wine cometh. These also make garments for men; these bring glory unto men; and without women cannot men be.
Yes, and if men have gathered together gold and silver, or any other goodly thing, do they not love a woman which is comely in favor and beauty? and letting all those things go, do they not gape, and even with open mouth fix their eyes fast on her, and have not all men more desire for her than for silver or gold, or any goodly thing whatsoever?
A man leaves his own father that brough him up, and his own country, and cleaves unto his wife. He sticketh not to spend his life with his wife, and remembers neither father, nor mother, nor country.
By this also you must know that women have dominion over you; do you not labor and toil, and give and bring all to the woman? Yes, a man takes his sword, and goes his way to rob and to steal, to sail upon the sea and upon rivers; and looks upon a lion, and goes in the darkness, and when he has stolen, spoiled, and robbed, he brings it to his love.
Wherefore a man loves his wife better than father or mother. Yes, many there be that have run out of their wits for women, and become servants for their sakes. Many also have perished, have erred, and sinned, for women. And now do ye not believe me?
Is not the king great in his power? Do not all regions fear to touch him? Yet did I see him and Apame the king's concubine, the daughter of the admirable Bartacus, sitting at the right hand of the king, and taking the crown from the king's head and, and setting it upon her own head; she also struck the king with her left hand. And yet for all this the king gaped and gazed upon her with open mouth; if she laughed upon him, he laughed also, but if she took any displeasure at him, the king was fain to flatter, that she might be reconciled to him again. O you men, how can it be but women should be strong seeing they do thus?
Then, the king and the princes looked one upon another; so he began to speak of the truth. O ye men, are not women strong? ..."
Happy Mother's Day to mothers and other strong women everywhere.