In addition to outpacing men in frequency of Bible engagement, women Bible study authors regularly lead or feature in the best-seller lists of Christian publishing houses. LifeWay, for example, lists Bible study authors Beth Moore, Priscilla Shirer, Kelly Minter, Lysa TerKeurst, Jen Wilkin, Angie Smith, and Lisa Harper among their top-selling writers.
Minter, author of LifeWay’s recent Bible study Finding God Faithful: A Study on the Life of Joseph, said the success and visibility of female Bible study authors spurred her own desire to write Bible studies. “It started with Kay Arthur, then Beth Moore and Priscilla Shirer—Bible studies for women really broke into the mainstream. People were traveling to go hear these people speak, going to the store to buy their books, going to Amazon to buy their studies,” Minter said. “I didn’t even know Beth Moore, but Beth Moore taught me how to write Bible studies, and so did Kay Arthur.” Minter noted that even as a middle school student, she was diving into Scripture using Arthur’s Bible studies.
Jennie Allen suggested the popularity of female Bible study authors could be due, in part, to supply and demand. She observed that women may be more likely to use study resources, while men may approach Bible engagement in a different way. Allen said, “When I think of the guys getting together for church, they go for coffee from six to seven [in the morning] and they share life together. They catch up and they hold each other accountable. I think of my husband over the years [and] what he’s been [involved] in; it’s like, ‘Let’s study Romans 8 over the course of a semester with 10 guys.’ They just each take a verse and they talk about it—it’s so different.”
Allen also argues that women who may be primarily taught by men in their local congregations crave the voices and perspectives of female leaders and want those voices in their lives. She observed, “A way was made for women’s Bible study and for women’s equipping—because most Sundays and Wednesday nights were male teachers.”
Regarding women’s higher degrees of Bible engagement, Arthur said, “I can’t tell you why,” but she recounted how her own path to Bible study teaching and authorship arose from a felt need as she was teaching teenagers in Mexico and then in the United States. Arthur cited one of her favorite verses, Psalm 119:102, which reads, “I have not turned aside from Your ordinances, for You Yourself have taught me” (NASB). Arthur says her Bible studies arose out of “a passion for people to discover God’s truth for themselves by learning how to study inductively.”
ライフウェイ社から最近出版されたバイブルスタディ本『信じる神を見つける―ジョセフの人生について―（原題：Finding God Faithful: A Study on the Life of Joseph）』を書いたミンターは、多くの女性がバイブルスタディ本で成功を収めているのを見て、自分もバイブルスタディ本を書こうと思ったという。
Like Arthur, many of the best-known women Bible teachers are hesitant to guess why women devote more time to reading Scripture than men. But they know why they are passionate about it: They attest to how committed time in Scripture has changed their own lives and serves as the foundation of their relationship with God.
“I don’t think you can know God as he is apart from the Word,” Lotz said. “You can get glimpses of him, perhaps. You can know about him, see reflections of him—but he has revealed himself accurately through the written Word, the living Word.” She continued, “I don’t want to know God the way some people say he may be, or some people think he is or is not. I want to know him as he is. And if there is a God in the universe, then I want to know the names he calls himself. I want to know how he’s revealed himself. I don’t want to know him secondhand, or through hearsay.”
“Scripture does not return void,” said Denver Seminary faculty member Angie Ward, citing Isaiah 55:11. Ward, the author of I Am A Leader: When Women Discover the Joy of Their Calling, notes the importance of immersing oneself in Scripture to know God deeply rather than merely to acquire knowledge. “Information alone doesn’t equal transformation,” Ward said. “There’s definitely power in Scripture, but it’s in letting it soak into our lives” and experiencing transformation “through that working of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit works through Scripture.”
『リーダーとしての私―召命を見つけて喜ぶ女性たち―（原題：I Am A Leader: When Women Discover the Joy of Their Calling）』の著者、アンジー・ウォード（デンバー神学校教授）はイザヤ書55章11節を引用しつつ「聖書は空虚さをもたらさない」と語る。
Perry says the Word transformed her life by teaching her who Jesus really is. “Apart from the Scriptures, I wouldn’t have any framework of … who he is, why he’s to be trusted, and how out of that trust how my life should look,” she said. “The Scriptures have provided evidence for faith, reason to believe, fuel for faith—but also a really clear understanding of why I exist, what I’m supposed to be doing in this life. . . . Apart from [the Scriptures], I would still be the same person [I was before I became a Christian].”
Each of the Bible study authors and teachers interviewed for this article is passionate about how the Word of God can transform the lives of those who encounter it. All of them urged every Christian to make it a daily practice to read and study the Word. “Stop calling it a quiet time,” argued Glahn. After all, not all women have the ability or the margin to create an ideal, quiet setting for biblical study and reflection. We need not wait for the perfect time or place; the transformative power of the Word is very near. As Saint Augustine said, all we must do is “Take up and read. Take up and read.”