The virtuous body of Christ – Part 3


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The virtuous body of Christ” – Part 3

March 19, 2016

with Steven Crook

 

What does it mean to be virtuous? This is probably among the first questions that most Christians ask themselves when considering what Proverbs chapter 31 is all about. Mankind is able to define what virtue is, but is that how God defines virtue and being virtuous?

In the study today, we are going to take a closer look at what the Lord tells us is virtuous. I believe that those who have eyes to see and ears to hear what the Spirit says unto the churches, will “walk away” from this study with and entirely new idea about what the Lord looks for in His wife, “The Virtuous body of Christ”.

 

What is virtue?

 

Pro 31:10  Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.

What is virtue? Merriam-Webster defines “virtue” as simply:

Morally good behavior or character

A good and moral quality

The good result that comes from something

Merriam-Webster also gives a “full definition” of virtue as:

  1. A) conformity to a standard of right: morality B) a particular moral excellence
  2. plural: an order of angels – see celestial hierarchy
  3. a beneficial quality or power of a thing
  4. manly strength or courage – valor
  5. a commendable quality or trait – merit
  6. a capacity to act – potency
  7. chastity especially in a woman

Merriam-Webster define “virtuous” as:

Morally good: having or showing virtue

Strong’s concordance defines “virtuous” as:

H2428

chayil
khah’-yil
From H2342; probably a force, whether of men, means or other resources; an army, wealth, virtue, valor, strength: – able, activity, (+) army, band of men (soldiers), company, (great) forces, goods, host, might, power, riches, strength, strong, substance, train, (+) valiant (-ly), valour, virtuous (-ly), war, worthy (-ily).
Total KJV occurrences: 243

All of these definitions, even with Strong’s concordance, are things that mankind has defined as traits worthy of the concept of virtue. However, the diligent wife of Christ is always concerning herself with what the will of her Husband is.

Why is it important to compare what the world defines as virtue versus what the Lord means virtue to be understood as in the context of defining what a virtuous woman is?

Did you notice how many times “moral” or “morality” was used to define virtue? Who gets to define what being moral or what morality is? If we rely on our own definitions, then we will have to welcome the opinion of all humans which is disastrous for the new man being formed in us.

This series is titled, “The Virtuous body of Christ” so I am obligated to point out the spiritual definition of virtue or being virtuous, but I also cannot negate the fact that virtue in the physical sense and application does matter.

 

Natural Virtue

 

Having natural virtue, as defined by whatever our societal norms are, is something that does not come naturally to anyone. We must work on being strong in whatever it is we are trying to be strong in. If I want to have strong muscles, I need to work them out. If I want to have a strong mind, it must be intellectually worked out. So then is this true for virtue.

As Christians, like Christ, we must be like our Husband. When we are in a relationship we naturally take on characteristics of our partner’s mindset. With our Husband Christ, we are to put on His whole mind.

When we do, what happens for us in our natural and physical lives is a reflection of the spiritual truths that live in us. If they are lacking in application in our day to day lives that is because they need to be exercised more and more in our spiritual mindset.

This is something that only the Lord can do in us and that is why it is so important for us to listen to the will and commands of our Husband the Lord.

Applying virtue in our lives

Pro 31:10  Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.

Pro 31:10  WhoH4310 can findH4672 a virtuousH2428 woman?H802 for her priceH4377 is farH7350 above rubies.H4480 H6443

In our last study, we covered what spiritual drunkenness is and why it is important that we do not become drunk with the doctrines of what so many other harlots become drunk with.

As it pertains to virtue, we can become drunk on what the world defines as virtue without even knowing that is happening and has happened already.

How is that?

What I am about to share is something that I haven’t heard mentioned or preached anywhere. I have no doubt that someone somewhere has taught this and has been led of the Lord to understand it, but after studying this for myself, I am much more informed of the virtue and virtuous wife the Lord inspired Lemuel’s mother to tell Lemuel to seek out.

What is a “virtuous” woman as defined in scripture? Remember that Strong’s concordance lists H2428 in English as “virtuous”.

Here is H2428 being used in scripture. I am not going to read all of these but I am listing them in the notes so that you can see them for yourselves.

H2428
chayil
Total KJV Occurrences: 242
army, 51
Exo_14:9, Deu_11:4, 1Ki_20:19, 1Ki_20:25 (2), 2Ki_25:5 (2), 2Ki_25:10, 2Ch_13:3, 2Ch_14:8, 2Ch_24:24, Neh_2:9, Neh_4:2, Isa_43:17, Jer_32:2, Jer_34:1, Jer_34:7, Jer_34:21, Jer_35:11 (2), Jer_37:5, Jer_37:7, Jer_37:10-11 (3), Jer_38:3, Jer_39:1, Jer_39:5, Jer_46:2, Jer_46:22, Jer_52:4, Jer_52:8 (2), Jer_52:14, Eze_17:17, Eze_27:10-11 (2), Eze_29:18-19 (3), Eze_32:31, Eze_37:10, Eze_38:4, Eze_38:15, Dan_11:7, Dan_11:13, Dan_11:25-26 (3), Joe_2:11, Joe_2:25
valour, 37
Jos_1:14, Jos_8:2-3 (2), Jos_10:7, Jdg_3:29, Jdg_6:12, Jdg_18:1-2 (2), Jdg_20:44, Jdg_20:46, 1Ki_11:28, 2Ki_5:1, 2Ki_24:14, 1Ch_5:24, 1Ch_7:7, 1Ch_7:9, 1Ch_7:11, 1Ch_8:40 (2), 1Ch_12:21, 1Ch_12:25, 1Ch_12:28, 1Ch_12:30, 1Ch_26:6, 1Ch_26:30-32 (3), 2Ch_13:3, 2Ch_14:8, 2Ch_17:13-14 (2), 2Ch_17:16-17 (2), 2Ch_25:6, 2Ch_26:12, 2Ch_32:21, Neh_11:14
host, 28
Exo_14:4, Exo_14:17, Exo_14:28, Exo_15:4, Num_31:14, 1Sa_14:48, 1Sa_17:20, 2Sa_8:9, 2Sa_24:2, 2Sa_24:4 (2), 1Ki_20:1, 2Ki_6:14-15 (2), 2Ki_7:6, 2Ki_9:5, 2Ki_11:15, 2Ki_25:1, 1Ch_18:9, 2Ch_14:9, 2Ch_16:7-8 (2), 2Ch_23:14, 2Ch_24:23-24 (2), 2Ch_26:11, Psa_33:16, Psa_136:15
valiant, 20
1Sa_14:52, 1Sa_16:18, 1Sa_18:17, 1Sa_31:12, 2Sa_2:7, 2Sa_11:16, 2Sa_13:28, 2Sa_17:10 (2), 2Sa_23:20, 2Sa_24:9, 1Ki_1:42, 1Ch_5:18, 1Ch_10:12, 1Ch_11:22, 1Ch_28:1, 2Ch_26:17, 2Ch_28:6, Neh_11:6, Nah_2:3
forces, 14
2Ch_17:2, Isa_60:5, Isa_60:11, Jer_40:7, Jer_40:13, Jer_41:11, Jer_41:13, Jer_41:16, Jer_42:1, Jer_42:8, Jer_43:4-5 (2), Oba_1:10-11 (2)
strength, 12
1Sa_2:4, 2Sa_22:40, Psa_18:32, Psa_18:39, Psa_33:17, Psa_84:7 (2), Pro_31:3, Ecc_10:10, Joe_2:22 (2), Hab_3:19
riches, 11
Job_20:15, Psa_62:10, Psa_73:12, Isa_8:4, Isa_10:14, Isa_61:6 (2), Eze_26:12, Eze_28:4-5 (3)
wealth, 10
Gen_34:29, Deu_8:17-18 (2), Rth_2:1, 2Ki_15:20, Job_31:25, Psa_49:6, Psa_49:10, Pro_13:22, Zec_14:14
power, 9
1Sa_9:1, 2Sa_22:33, 1Ch_20:1, Est_1:3, Est_8:11, Job_21:7, Psa_59:11, Zec_9:3-4 (2)
substance, 7
Job_5:4-5 (2), Job_15:29, Job_20:18, Jer_15:13, Jer_17:3, Mic_4:13 (2)
might, 6
2Ki_24:16, 1Ch_7:2, 1Ch_7:5, 1Ch_12:8, Zec_4:5-6 (2)
strong, 5
2Ki_2:16, 1Ch_26:7, 1Ch_26:9, Ecc_12:3, Jer_48:14
valiantly, 5
Num_24:18, Psa_108:12-13 (2), Psa_118:15-16 (2)
able, 4
Exo_18:21, Exo_18:25, 1Ch_9:13, 1Ch_26:8
armies, 4
2Ki_25:23, 2Ki_25:26, 1Ch_11:26, 2Ch_16:4
virtuous, 3
Rth_3:11, Pro_12:4, Pro_31:10
band, 2
1Sa_10:26, Ezr_8:22
goods, 2
Num_31:9, Zep_1:13
war, 2
Deu_3:18, 2Ch_33:14
activity, 1
Gen_47:6
company, 1
2Ch_9:1
hosts, 1
1Ki_15:20
mighty, 1
2Ch_26:13
soldiers, 1
Ezr_8:22
train, 1
1Ki_10:2
valiantest, 1
Jdg_21:10
virtuously, 1
Pro_31:29
worthily, 1
Rth_4:11
worthy, 1
1Ki_1:52

“Virtuous” is listed 51 times as “army” which is almost 1/5th of all the words used in English. It is listed 28 times as host and 14 as forces. These words alone are 93 times of the 242 that it is mentioned. That is nearly 40% of the time we see a host, army or force being mentioned in connection with “virtuous”.

Why is that and what does it mean? Let’s read a few of the examples.

Exo 14:9  But the Egyptians pursued after them, all the horses and chariots of Pharaoh, and his horsemen, and his army H2428, and overtook them encamping by the sea, beside Pihahiroth, before Baalzephon.

Jer 32:2  For then the king of Babylon’s army H2428 besieged Jerusalem: and Jeremiah the prophet was shut up in the court of the prison, which was in the king of Judah’s house.

Jer 38:3  Thus saith the LORD, This city shall surely be given into the hand of the king of Babylon’s army H2428, which shall take it.

Exo 14:4  And I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, that he shall follow after them; and I will be honoured upon Pharaoh, and upon all his host H2428; that the Egyptians may know that I am the LORD. And they did so.

Psa 136:15  But overthrew Pharaoh and his host H2428 in the Red sea: for his mercy endureth for ever.

2Ch 17:2  And he placed forces H2428 in all the fenced cities of Judah, and set garrisons in the land of Judah, and in the cities of Ephraim, which Asa his father had taken.

So, “virtuous” is partly defined as an army most of the time it is used, but it is also an army with certain attributes. Here are some of those attributes and the ones mostly translated from H2428.

Jos 1:14  Your wives, your little ones, and your cattle, shall remain in the land which Moses gave you on this side Jordan; but ye shall pass before your brethren armed, all the mighty men of valour H2428, and help them;

Neh 11:14  And their brethren, mighty men of valour H2428, an hundred twenty and eight: and their overseer was Zabdiel, the son of one of the great men.

1Sa 14:52  And there was sore war against the Philistines all the days of Saul: and when Saul saw any strong man, or any valiant H2428 man, he took him unto him.

1Sa 2:4  The bows of the mighty men are broken, and they that stumbled are girded with strength H2428.

Psa 18:32  It is God that girdeth me with strength H2428, and maketh my way perfect.

All of these words are the same Hebrew word translated as virtuous in Proverbs 31:10, but how can that be and what does it mean for us?

Before we answer that let’s look at the negative application of this word “virtuous”. We all can and have been partakers of worldly virtue, the things the world thinks are virtuous.

Here is what scripture speaks about this “virtuous” word/concept concerning what the world does with virtue.

Job 20:4  Knowest thou not this of old, since man was placed upon earth,
Job 20:5  That the triumphing of the wicked is short, and the joy of the hypocrite but for a moment?

A couple verses later:

Job 20:15  He hath swallowed down riches H2428, and he shall vomit them up again: God shall cast them out of his belly.

Psa 62:9  Surely men of low degree are vanity, and men of high degree are a lie: to be laid in the balance, they are altogether lighter than vanity.
Psa 62:10  Trust not in oppression, and become not vain in robbery: if riches H2428 increase, set not your heart upon them.

Eze 28:1  The word of the LORD came again unto me, saying,
Eze 28:2  Son of man, say unto the prince of Tyrus, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Because thine heart is lifted up, and thou hast said, I am a God, I sit in the seat of God, in the midst of the seas; yet thou art a man, and not God, though thou set thine heart as the heart of God:
Eze 28:3  Behold, thou art wiser than Daniel; there is no secret that they can hide from thee:
Eze 28:4  With thy wisdom and with thine understanding thou hast gotten thee riches H2428, and hast gotten gold and silver into thy treasures:
Eze 28:5  By thy great wisdom and by thy traffick hast thou increased thy riches H2428, and thine heart is lifted up because of thy riches H2428:

All of these words are the same word “virtuous” and as can be seen when it is translated as “riches” there is a negative connotation of what we do with what the Lord alone has given us. We value what we think virtue is but then we define it and do with it whatever the idols of our hearts tell us to do with “virtue”.

So what are we to take away for this? There is a lot being covered here. Well, in order to answer this question, we must get to the root of the word virtuous. We also must consider the last part of this verse, “…for her price is far above rubies”.

Firstly, here is the root of “virtuous”, H2428.

H2428

chayil
khah’-yil
From H2342; probably a force, whether of men, means or other resources; an army, wealth, virtue, valor, strength: – able, activity, (+) army, band of men (soldiers), company, (great) forces, goods, host, might, power, riches, strength, strong, substance, train, (+) valiant (-ly), valour, virtuous (-ly), war, worthy (-ily).
Total KJV occurrences: 243

The root is “H2342”.

H2342

chûl    chı̂yl
khool, kheel
A primitive root; properly to twist or whirl (in a circular or spiral manner), that is, (specifically) to dance, to writhe in pain (especially of parturition) or fear; figuratively to wait, to pervert: – bear, (make to) bring forth, (make to) calve, dance, drive away, fall grievously (with pain), fear, form, great, grieve, (be) grievous, hope, look, make, be in pain, be much (sore) pained, rest, shake, shapen, (be) sorrow (-ful), stay, tarry, travail (with pain), tremble, trust, wait carefully (patiently), be wounded.
Total KJV occurrences: 58

H2342
chûl  /  chı̂yl
Total KJV Occurrences: 68
pain, 6
Isa_13:8, Isa_26:17-18 (2), Jer_30:23, Eze_30:16, Mic_4:10
formed, 5
Deu_32:18, Job_26:5, Job_26:13, Psa_90:2, Pro_26:10
forth, 4
Pro_8:24-25 (2), Isa_45:10, Isa_66:8
brought, 3
Pro_8:24-25 (2), Isa_45:10
pained, 3
Joe_2:4-6 (3)
calve, 2
Job_39:1, Psa_29:9
fall, 2
Jer_23:19, Jer_30:23
fear, 2
1Ch_16:30, Psa_96:9
grieved, 2
Est_4:4, Jer_5:3
grievous, 2
Psa_10:5, Jer_23:19
shaketh, 2
Psa_29:8 (2)
stayed, 2
Gen_8:10, Lam_4:6
travail, 2
Isa_23:4, Isa_54:1
travailed, 2
Isa_66:7-8 (2)
tremble, 2
Psa_114:7, Jer_5:22
trembled, 2
Psa_97:4, Hab_3:10
wounded, 2
1Ch_10:3 (2)
abide, 1
Hos_11:6
afraid, 1
Psa_77:16
anguish, 1
Deu_2:25
bare, 1
Isa_51:2
bring, 1
Isa_66:8
dance, 1
Jdg_21:21
danced, 1
Jdg_21:23
driveth, 1
Pro_25:23 (2)
great, 1
Eze_30:16
grievously, 1
Jer_23:19
hope, 1
Lam_3:26
look, 1
Job_20:21
made, 1
Job_15:7
patiently, 1
Psa_37:7 (2)
rest, 1
2Sa_3:29
shapen, 1
Psa_51:5
sorrow, 1
Jer_51:29
sorrowful, 1
Zec_9:5
tarried, 1
Jdg_3:25
travaileth, 1
Job_15:20
trust, 1
Job_35:14
wait, 1
Psa_37:7
waited, 1
Mic_1:12

Wait, what? The root of “virtuous” is rooted in pain? Here are a few of these verses listed out so that we can get an idea of what we are being told.

Isa 13:8  And they shall be afraid: pangs and sorrows shall take hold of them; they shall be in pain H2342 as a woman that travaileth: they shall be amazed one at another; their faces shall be as flames.

Isa 26:17  Like as a woman with child, that draweth near the time of her delivery, is in pain H2342, and crieth out in her pangs; so have we been in thy sight, O LORD.
Isa 26:18  We have been with child, we have been in pain, we have as it were brought forth wind; we have not wrought any deliverance in the earth; neither have the inhabitants of the world fallen.

Jer 30:23  Behold, the whirlwind of the LORD goeth forth with fury, a continuing whirlwind: it shall fall with pain H2342 upon the head of the wicked.

Eze 30:16  And I will set fire in Egypt: Sin shall have great pain H2342, and No shall be rent asunder, and Noph shall have distresses daily.

Mic 4:10  Be in pain H2342, and labour to bring forth, O daughter of Zion, like a woman in travail: for now shalt thou go forth out of the city, and thou shalt dwell in the field, and thou shalt go even to Babylon; there shalt thou be delivered; there the LORD shall redeem thee from the hand of thine enemies.

Jer 23:19  Behold, a whirlwind of the LORD is gone forth in fury, even a grievous H2342 whirlwind: it shall fall grievously H2342 upon the head of the wicked.

Deu 2:25  This day will I begin to put the dread of thee and the fear of thee upon the nations that are under the whole heaven, who shall hear report of thee, and shall tremble, and be in anguish H2342 because of thee.

How can it be that pain and anguish are the root of being virtuous? It does not make sense to the carnally minded natural man. It is utter foolishness to the old man in us all.

Why does it make sense to the new man and what is the Lord telling us about Jesus Christ being the Head of His church? Why does a husband want a virtuous wife? Maybe it has something to do with her value?

The price of something is set by the value it holds for those who are selling and buying that something.

Rom 8:20  For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope,
Rom 8:21  Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.
Rom 8:22  For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.
Rom 8:23  And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.
Rom 8:24  For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?
Rom 8:25  But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.

A brilliantly colored red ruby holds a tremendous value to the natural man. It is rarer than diamonds and red is directly connected to “old man Adam”. Adam = red.

Gen 2:19  And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam H121 to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.

H121
‘âdâm
BDB Definition:
Adam = “red”
1) first man
2) city in Jordan valley
Part of Speech: noun proper masculine
A Related Word by BDB/Strong’s Number: the same as H120
Same Word by TWOT Number: 25a

If a “red” ruby holds value to the old natural man in us all, of how much more value is this virtuous woman to a man who values such things?

Pro 31:10  Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.

Who can find a woman who is strong, a force to be reckoned with, has great courage in the face of danger, is determined, is rich in the Spirit, represents power and represents her Husband in all that she does and says? If you find such a woman, then you are a BLESSED Husband indeed.

Yes, Jesus Christ has placed us as this woman to represent Him as His body. We are the church of the living God and we are extremely valuable to our Husband.

Why is our value so significant?

1Pe 1:3  Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
1Pe 1:4  To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you,
1Pe 1:5  Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
1Pe 1:6  Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations:
1Pe 1:7  That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:
1Pe 1:8  Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:

As we live each and every day of our lives, the new man in us is being BORN into NEWNESS of LIFE by the DEATH of the old man. It is THROUGH death that life happens, and the new man in us all and the mind of our Husband, is born little by little each and every day. We die daily and little by little He increases in us.

In our next study, we are going to continue to see why it is “the heart” of Jesus safely trusts in His wife, the many membered “army” of His body, and how we can all apply practical skills in our lives which reflect what being a virtuous wife is all about.

We have focused some on the spiritual aspects of the word “virtuous” today, but in the next study we are going to bridge the gap on how the physical reflects the spiritual in the lives of both men and women, single and married, young and old in the body of Christ.

 

 

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