The Strange Woman: A Warning to the Bride
There is a serious warning given to Yahuweh’s people in the Scriptures, which if not heeded, will result in serious blemish in the Bride, and for many, even shipwreck of The Faith.
This Scriptural warning reveals in detail the identity of the Strange Woman. Also called the False Bride and the Harlot, this Strange Woman is seen throughout the Scriptures, and made manifest in the Book of Revelation.
Scripture gives us a detailed warning, and also gives us preventive measures, and the antidote as well, against being taken by this Strange Woman. The warning is especially important to Yahuweh’s people, as the victims of the Strange woman stand to lose part or all of their inheritance.
In this writing we will first look at the warning, and then carefully analyse it, to see the prophetic message to the Bride. We will then notice the results to those who do not heed the warning.
Here is the warning in full:
When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul; 11 Discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee: 12 To deliver thee from the way of the evil man, from the man that speaketh froward things; 13 Who leave the paths of uprightness, to walk in the ways of darkness; 14 Who rejoice to do evil, and delight in the frowardness of the wicked; 15 Whose ways are crooked, and they froward in their paths: 16 To deliver thee from the strange woman, even from the stranger which flattereth with her words; 17 Which forsaketh the guide of her youth, and forgetteth the covenant of her God. 18 For her house inclineth unto death, and her paths unto the dead. 19 None that go unto her return again, neither take they hold of the paths of life. 20 That thou mayest walk in the way of good men, and keep the paths of the righteous. 21 For the upright shall dwell in the land, and the perfect shall remain in it. 22 But the wicked shall be cut off from the earth, and the transgressors shall be rooted out of it. (Proverbs 2:10-22)
Within the above section of Proverbs, we see the following items that give us a complete picture of the warning:
The Warning: A Summary
- We are warned of the enemy’s method of snaring or ‘taking out’ Yahuweh’s people, by the Strange Woman;
- We are given the antidote to avoid being taken;
- We are warned of the consequences of not choosing wisdom.
Let’s look at the highlights, and then look at the revealing details.
The first thing we are told in the above passage is the antidote against becoming ensnared:
When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul; Discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee: (Proverbs 2:10-11)
Here we see the result of Wisdom is Knowledge, Discretion, and Understanding. These are all needed to guard Yahuweh’s people, and to prevent them from becoming entrapped by the ‘Strange Woman.’
The great importance of obtaining the wisdom of Yahuweh can be seen throughout the Book of Proverbs, as seen here:
Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding. (Proverbs 4:7)
Next we are shown the important role wisdom plays in being an antidote:
15 To deliver thee from the way of the evil man…
16 To deliver thee from the strange woman…
20 That thou mayest walk in the way of good men, and keep the paths of the Righteous. (Proverbs 2:12,16,20)
This matter of Biblical wisdom is important, because as we will see, the Evil Man and the Strange Woman can prevent Yahuweh’s people from walking in the way of the upright, and can prevent them from keeping the Way of the Righteous.
Yahuweh, in His mercy, has revealed to us the main tactics of our enemy, a spirit named satan. In our subject passage, we will see the main method of satan’s attack comes through the Strange Woman. We are also given in these same passages the details of this Strange Woman, and the methods she uses.
Let us discover the identity of this Strange Woman.
Who is the Strange Woman?
To the casual Bible reader, the Strange Woman is the Harlot seen in the Book of Proverbs. She is seen as a harlot in the natural sense, as someone to avoid. In many ways, this Strange Woman can prevent even a strong man from walking in The Way.
But as we study the many words throughout Scripture describing the Women of Scripture, we begin to see the prophetic descriptions of these women emerge. In a broad, general sense, there are two prophetic Women of Scripture — the True Bride; and the False Bride, or Harlot.
Furthermore, ‘the Woman’ in Scripture is prophetic of any congregation of Yahuweh’s people; the true Bride speaks of one group of people, whereas the false Bride speaks of another.
In general, the False Bride is the entire apostate, Religious World that is seen prophetically in Scripture as the Strange Woman or Harlot. We might surmise that the ‘Strange Woman’ could include both the greater congregation of the Religious World, made up of scattered individual apostate people, as well as individual congregations following apostate Leadership.
From the many Scripture passages that speak of the Harlot and the Strange Woman, we begin to see the prophetic or ‘now’ meaning to the verses, as a message for today, to be given as a warning to the Bride.
In Scripture, the phrase ‘strange woman’ is only one of many phrases used to identify the False Bride or Harlot. Just as there is a true Messiah and corresponding false- or anti- Messiah, there is likewise a True Bride, and a corresponding False Bride.
The True Bride can be seen throughout Scripture, and can be recognised by her actions, showing that she is heeding the voice of the Bridegroom. The False Bride can likewise be recognised by her actions of NOT heeding the voice of the Bridegroom, but instead hearing the voice of a stranger.
In passing, let’s first note the goal and the methods of this False Bride, the Strange Woman of Scripture.
The Strange Woman: Her Goal
The goal and methods of the False Bride can be seen in the following passage:
For the upright shall dwell in the land, and the perfect shall remain in it. But the wicked shall be cut off from the earth, and the transgressors shall be rooted out of it. (Proverbs 2:21,22)
The word ‘for’ at the start of verse 21 is our first clue. This tells us that the two verses after the word ‘for’ are the result of the verses seen before the word ‘for.’ These two verses reveal the goal of satan, the spiritual enemy of the Believers! Let’s look at this closely.
In Scripture, the phrases ‘the earth’ and ‘the Land’ speak of our eternal inheritance, prophetically called the ‘Promised Land.’ With this in mind, it can be seen that the enemy’s goal is goal is to prevent Yahuweh’s people from entering into, and remaining in, their inheritance that is rightfully theirs.
There is much teaching in the New Testament, both in clear teaching in the epistles, and in more obscure teaching in the parables, regarding our inheritance. We can not go into depth here, but all of Yahuweh’s promises require the recipients to exercise the works of Faith that are required to reach out and grasp what is promised, and what is given.
For example, both Moses and Joshua confirmed that the Land [the inheritance] had been already given by promise [past tense], but they still had to tread every footstep of that inheritance [future tense], in order to receive it (Joshua 1:3).
This is the same principle all of Yahuweh’s people must follow today, even when we consider the magnificent promises of our inheritance of the New Covenant in Yahushua.
The inheritance is promised to the Saints [Believers] who are in the Light (Colossians 1:12). That is, the inheritance is promised to those who are walking in the Light, by allowing the True Light [Messiah] to tread out our inheritance as He lives within us (Colossians 1:27), enabling us to walk in obedience to the Scriptures [the shining of Light of being a “DO-er” of the Word].
The enemy wants to prevent us from treading the footsteps of our inheritance, because he knows that is how our inheritance can be diminished, or even removed completely. We will see how this can occur to those who are taken by the Strange Woman.
Let’s now look at her methods.
The Strange Woman: Her Methods
From the subject passage, we see that satan seeks to entrap Yahuweh’s people, by bringing them into the bondage of a false or counterfeit ‘New Covenant,’ promoted by the teaching of the Strange Woman. If satan can deceive Yahuweh’s people into listening to the words of a false Bride, enticing them to embrace a false ‘New Covenant,’ he can then prevent them from becoming a part of the true Bride, and from becoming a partaker of the true New Covenant. In this way, the inheritance can be stolen through deception. Like a counterfeit deed to a plot of land, the ever-popular counterfeit ‘New Covenant’ being taught today has no real value, and carries no promise of inheritance.
Let’s look further at the difference between the true New Covenant, and the false.
The New Covenant: The True and the False
There is a True version, and many false or counterfeit versions, of Yahuweh’s New Covenant. We can not go into depth at this point, except to say that these false versions are simply man-made doctrines, mere ‘illusions’ of what the New Covenant really is. They are mixtures of the truths of Scripture, mixed with the error of man-made doctrines.
The New Covenant we are all familiar with is like a nicely-wrapped loaf of bread. On the outside wrapper it may say, “New Covenant.” It may come wrapped in a familiar wrapping, and may look just like the New Covenant we have studied in the Scriptures.
But when we look carefully at the wrapping, and we read the ingredients for ourselves, we may see there are various additives, fillers, and artificial ingredients — It is not the pure, organic New Covenant of the Scriptures. The pure New Covenant of Scripture has no man-made doctrines as ingredients. It is in agreement with “all of Scripture” (2Tim 3:16), and is in harmony with the Torah, and with “all that the Prophets have spoken” (Isaiah 8:20; Luke 24:25). Thus it provides the nourishment of “every word that proceeds out of the mouth of Yahuweh” (Matt 4:4; Luke 4:4).
The false or counterfeit versions of the ‘New Covenant’ teachings are simply man’s various ideas of what men imagine Yahuweh’s New Covenant to be, as shaped and modified to fit a particular viewpoint. The many various religious groups all describe and teach various versions of the New Covenant, each slightly different from the other.
The false versions of the New Covenant all have one thing in common, however. They are all teachings of Scripture that have been tainted with man’s ideas. The result in each instance is simply a ‘paradigm’ — a specific perspective, or way of seeing and thinking about — the New Covenant. Again, the true New Covenant will be in agreement with all of Scripture, and with all the words of the Prophets. There are no contradictions of Scripture in the true New Covenant.
As we look further at the identity of the False Bride-Harlot, we will see how she entraps Yahuweh’s people by use of a corrupted, counterfeit, deceitful teaching of the New Covenant, which is spoken of prophetically as the Deceitful Bow, mentioned in Psalms 78:57 and Hosea 7:16.
Let’s now look at the False Bride, the Strange Woman, to see her identity.
The Strange Woman: Her Identity Revealed
To discover the identity of this Strange Woman, this Harlot-Bride, we will present the verses in order, and comment as we proceed. Some of the words have the Strong’s numbers indicated, and some will show the Strong’s word definitions. For some of the words, we will look at relevant Scripture passages using these same Hebrew words, in order to see proper meaning from context.
Let’s also notice how the warnings, and also the identity of the Harlot-Bride, are revealed in a progressive manner:
When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul; 11 Discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee: (Proverbs 2:10-11)
Here we see the antidote. It is the wisdom and knowledge we receive from Yahuweh that become the antidote, and provide the discretion and understanding necessary to guard us, and warn us.
We are then told what the antidote will do for us — it will deliver us from what appears to be two separate groups, but the two are actually two descriptions of the same enemy. Here we will see the ‘Evil Man’ and the ‘Strange Woman’ both depict two perspectives of the same prophetic entity.
The Evil Man
First let’s notice the characteristics of the Evil Man:
To deliver <05337> thee from the way <01870> of the evil <07451> man, (Proverbs 2:12a)
Those who are evil travel along a particular ‘way’ or road on their journey through life, and the Righteous travel another. The ‘Way’ of Righteousness is the living person of Yahushua (John 14:6), living within His people, who desires to guide our feet into the proper Way (Luke 1:79).
It is when we are in the Way that we are delivered, recovered, and rescued, from the wrong road. But we are given further insight into those who are on this wrong road:
…from the man that speaketh froward <08419> things; (Proverbs 2:12b)
The one who is in the wrong road, the way in which the evil walk, is further revealed as the one who speaks froward [perverse, changed, turned, twisted] things. The definitions reveal the actions of those who have turned away from, and are opposed to, the Way of Righteousness.
Note carefully that the ‘evil’ man is spoken of as being evil, not because of a state of being evil, but because of his actions of turning away from the Way of Righteousness.
Peter reminds us that those who have turned away from the Way of Righteousness, are those who have turned away from keeping the Commandments of Yahuweh (2Peter 2:21), instead following the Way of Balaam (2Peter 2:15). As we have seen in another detailed warning, the Way of Balaam is the path that rejects the earlier Word of Yahuweh, and accepts only the later Word of Yahuweh.
Our life, on the other hand, depends on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of Yahuweh (Mt 4:4; Lk 4:4). Without Him as our Life, there is only death. When we leave the path on which Yahushua walks, we leave Him behind, for He will not leave the path of Righteousness. He will never leave or forsake us, but we may choose to leave Him alone on the path.
And so the evil man is further described:
13 Who leave the paths <0734> of uprightness <03476>, (Proverbs 2:13a)
Here, the evil man is further revealed as the one who forsakes, leaves, or refuses to walk in the path of uprightness, the Way of Life, the Way of the Upright.
One may be declared righteous from a judicial standpoint, having been cleansed of guilt of sin by the Blood of Yahushua. He is then placed on the path of uprightness. But once on the path, that one is encouraged to walk on, and continue in his path of uprightness, in the Way of Life.
The ‘Way of Life’ illustrates a living, vital relationship with the Saviour, as a way of life, along one’s path or journey through this life — as opposed to simply having a head-knowledge of certain Biblical facts.
Without this living relationship, without His life-in-us, and His light-in-us, we have only darkness. Without Yahushua, we can do nothing. As a result, the evil man has only one way in which to walk:
…to walk in the ways <01870> of darkness <02822> (Proverbs 2:13b)
The evil man who forsakes the right path, does so in order to walk in the paths of darkness, or absence of Light.
We recall that Yahushua the Messiah is Light (John 8:12, John 9:5). We also recall that the Law [Torah] is Light (Prov 6:23).
Thus we see that the path of Light is simply the path or journey of our day-to-day actions, as we allow Messiah-in-us to keep the Torah [obedience to all the Scriptures], by His Grace he gives us from within.
Thus the path of darkness is just the opposite. This is the path or journey of one’s day-to-day actions, perhaps verbally acknowledging Messiah and the Scriptures, but refusing to allow Messiah-in-them to keep the Law [Torah], by His Grace from within. This refusal is either because the Light of the candle is not present; or if present, is still being hidden under a bushel, and not on a candlestick.
We are further told of the practices of this evil man:
14 Who rejoice to do <06213> evil <07451>, and delight <01523> in the frowardness <08419> of the wicked <07451> (Proverbs 2:14)
The evil man, walking in the path of darkness, is further seen as one who does [do, work, make, or have] rejoicing, even in the midst of evil or wickedness [trouble and displeasure, because of breaking, or shattering of the covenant]. He is further seen as delighting, or rejoicing, even in the midst of frowardness, of perverse things — all that is turned away from, and opposed to, the Way of Righteousness.
We see further:
15 Whose ways <0734> are crooked <06141>, and they froward <03868> in their paths <04570>: (Proverbs 2:15)
The evil man, walking in the Way of Darkness, is further described as walking in the ways of crookedness — having a crook in the way.
The crook’d way is a way that is perverted, or twisted, and brings to mind the description of Peter describing those unlearned and unstable teachers, who twist the writings of the apostle Paul (2Pet 3:16). They have become froward, or turned aside from the right path, in their goings, in their daily lives.
Up to this point, we have been given a clear picture of the wicked and Evil Man. It is not until we see the Strange Woman, however, that we begin to grasp just who this Evil Man really is. Let’s now look at the Strange Woman.
The Strange Woman
We recall that we are being told of Wisdom as the antidote, to deliver us, and to rescue us from those who are on the wrong paths.
Now we see the Strange Woman coming into view:
16 To deliver <05337> [snatch away; rescue; recover] thee from the strange <02114> woman <0802> (Proverbs 2:16a)
In verse 10, we saw the goal of Wisdom was to guard, and perhaps prevent one from being taken by the enemy. But here in verse 16, we see a new goal and objective of Wisdom. Here the goal is to deliver — to snatch away, rescue, and recover Yahuweh’s people, after they have already been taken — by the Strange Woman.
At this point, it may not yet be obvious, but to rescue or recover someone from a situation, that someone must first be in that situation.
So as an opener, we will state that the vast majority of Yahuweh’s people have not been guarded by Wisdom. They have not been prevented from being taken by the enemy. They are in the clutches of the Strange Woman, and so they have need of being rescued, even though they are unaware of this need.
The Strange Woman is not strange, in the sense of being odd.
She is merely estranged, as the Hebrew word indicates. She has been Redeemed by the Blood of Redemption, by Yahushua’s Blood. She would be called a Believer in most circles. But she continues in iniquity, which is transgression of the Law [Torah] (1John 3:4), and so for this reason, she has become separated or ‘estranged’ from her Bridegroom-to-be, her Betrothed (Isaiah 59:2; Hosea 7:13).
The Strange Woman is among the Redeemed, but she continues to sin — to transgress the Law, which is iniquity (1John 3:4), either out of ignorance of it, or from a rebellious heart.
The Strange Woman is among the Redeemed, and she rejoices in our midst — but she is on a path whose daily actions and teachings are considered loathsome. She is not aware that the actions of those on this path are considered the actions of a harlot.
Because of her daily walk along this path, the Strange Woman is considered an alien, and even as an enemy of Yahuweh, for all practical purposes. This is some strong language in the Scripture word definitions, so let’s see why this is so.
I Know You Not!
Let’s look at actions that further describe the Strange Woman, actions that make her deplorable to Yahuweh:
…even from the stranger <05237> which flattereth <02505> with her words <0561> (Proverbs 2:16b)
Here we see the Strange Woman is a stranger, or as the Hebrew word indicates, she is an alien — an ‘unknown’ person — one who is not known.
This reminds us of the words that will be spoken to the Foolish Virgins of (Matthew 25:12), “I know you not!”
We then see that the Strange Woman is one who flatters [distributes, receives, or gives out a portion or part; who is smooth, slippery, or deceitful] with ‘her’ own sayings, her own utterances.
Notice it is not the Words or commands of Scripture she apportions or gives out; but it is with her own sayings that she apportions out, her own sayings with which she deceives. It is the mixture of Scripture, along with the sayings of man, that bring deception.
Let’s see how she deceives, with the sayings she gives out.
She Forgets the Schoolmaster
Perhaps the most to-the-point description is seen next:
17 Which forsaketh <05800> the guide <0441> of her youth <05271>, (Proverbs 2:17a)
Here we see the Strange Woman is one who forsakes [leave off, depart from, let alone, ignore, refuse] the ‘guide of her youth.’
The word ‘guide’ used here is the Hebrew word ‘alluph,’ Strong’s number <0441>, meaning “guide, governor, or captain,” and comes from the Hebrew word ‘alph,’ Strongs number <0502>, meaning “learn or teach.”
The word ‘youth’ is the Hebrew word ‘na-‘uwr’ meaning “youth, or young child.”
Together these words picture what we would call a ‘schoolmaster’ for a young child.
This same word-pair is seen in the New Testament, as the single Greek word ‘paidagogos,’ Strongs number <3807>, meaning “schoolmaster, instructor; a leader or instructor to tutor or guide young children.”
This same Greek word is seen in (1Cor 4:14) and in (Galatians 3:24-25), where we are told that the Law [the Torah] was our ‘Schoolmaster’ until Faith is established.
Here it becomes very clear who the Strange Woman is.
She is one who forsakes [leave off, depart from, let alone, ignore, refuse] the Law or Torah, which is intended to guide, instruct, and train Yahuweh’s people, while their Faith is becoming established; that is, while they are learning to walk along the correct path!
But the forsaking of the guide of her youth has much greater implications: She is about to abandon the true Covenant, the Marriage Contract, in favour of a counterfeit, or false covenant!
She Forsakes the True Covenant
The real significance of forsaking the Law [Torah] can be seen in the next phrase:
…and forgetteth <07911> the covenant <01285> of her God. (Proverbs 2:17b)
Here we see the result of forsaking the guide of her youth, the Torah, is that she forgets [forget, ignore, cease to care for] the Covenant [this is the marriage contract, agreement, or pledge] of her Elohim — the Covenant between Yahuweh and His people. For it is the Torah, even all of Scripture, that is the fine-print of the Marriage Covenant!
The Strange Woman claims to be keeping, and promoting, the ‘New Covenant’ — but what she promotes is not the New Covenant of the Scriptures.
Instead, it is a counterfeit of the New Covenant, one in which her own words have twisted the meaning of Scripture, and her own sayings have replaced the pure words of Scripture. It is a Law-less or Torah-less counterfeit of the genuine, New Covenant of the Scriptures.
The New Covenant she promotes is thus a counterfeit, or False ‘New Covenant.’
Those Who Remain in Her Household
At this point it is important to understand that the Strange Woman is not one particular person. Instead, the Strange Woman is a system of thought, and a collection of Leadership embracing that thought, that make up the many congregations of the Strange Woman. Those in attendance are merely those of her household.
Let’s see what is in store for those who remain in her household:
18 For her house <1004> inclineth <07743> unto death <04194>, (Proverbs 2:18a)
Because the word ‘for’ appears first, we know we are about to see the result of all the previous verses.
Here we see the result of her actions. Here we are told that her whole house — her household — is headed toward death.
…and her paths <04570> unto the dead <07496>. (Proverbs 2:18b)
It is not enough to see that the household is headed toward death, but we are told that the path she is on, the daily actions she promotes, is the path of the dead, and of death. We are reminded in (Prov 8:36) that these are those who hate Yahushua, and who despise His wisdom.
Then we see further warning of those who remain in her household, among those who walk the same path she is on:
19 None that go <0935> unto her return <07725> again, (Proverbs 2:19a)
Again, those who remain in her household will have no future opportunity to return [turn, repent, and return] to the right path.
Lest we think we can claim Messiah as our Way of Life, while walking on the path of the Strange Woman, while remaining in her household, notice what we are told next:
…neither take they hold <05381> of the paths <0734> of life <02416>. (Proverbs 2:19b)
Here we are told that as long as those remain, who are in her household, they will not take hold of [lay hold of, reach, attain] the Way of Life, the Living person of Messiah, the Way of Life for us, as He lives within us, to guide us in the right path of our day-to-day actions.
Because of the seriousness and finality of the day of one’s death on the earth, and the uncertainty of when one’s last day will be, there is given a “last call” as a reminder once again, to embrace wisdom, so as to achieve the following results:
20 That thou mayest walk <03212> in the way <01870> of good <02896> men, and keep <08104> the paths <0734> of the righteous <06662>. (Proverbs 2:20)
Again, wisdom is given to us, in order that we may walk [go, walk, depart, go away] in the way of good men [right, agreeable, goodness, excellence], and keep [observe, beware, heed, “Watch”] the Way of the Righteous [the Way of Yahushua, who is our Righteousness, as He lives within us], to produce the fruit [actions] of Righteousness, by His power and Grace.
One aspect of the word ‘walk’ is that of departing. Our going away, our departing, marks the end-point of our walking on the path of this life in the natural sense. We are given this lifetime on earth, in the natural sense, as an opportunity to choose for eternity. Thus it is important that we tread out our inheritance on the path today, that will actually yield an inheritance in eternity. Here we see why the path we choose now, is important in eternity:
21 For the upright <03477> shall dwell <07931> in the land <0776>, (Proverbs 2:21a)
Now we see the reason for being on the right path before we go out, or depart from this earth. Here we are told that those who are on the path [in the Way] of Righteousness, those called ‘the upright’ [straight, upright, correct, righteous], are those who will dwell [abide, inhabit, remain] in the Land [their eternal inheritance].
We are further told:
…and the perfect <08549> shall remain <03498> in it. (Proverbs 2:21b)
It is the perfect [complete, without blemish, without spot; in full accord with truth] shall remain [excel, have excess, be the remnant thereof] in the Land, in their inheritance.
The word perfect also denotes a quality of the true Bride, illustrating that she is allowing Messiah-in-her to chasten her, to train her, and to actively walk in the Torah, keeping the Torah in every way, that she might remain in the Way of Righteousness, on the path the upright. It is those who will remain in the Land.
But in contrast, we are told:
22 But the wicked <07563> shall be cut off <03772> from the earth <0776>, (Proverbs 2:22a)
The wicked [those whose actions are twisted, like a candle-wick, and so they are called ‘wick’d] shall be cut off [cut down, hewn as a tree, destroyed] from the earth [the inheritance].
The wicked are not on the path of the Upright, the path of those who allow Messiah-in-them to obey the Torah. Instead, they are on the path of the Strange Woman, who has deceived all those who remain in her household, to disobey, to transgress the Torah, which is to work iniquity.
And so it is, that the warning continues:
…and the transgressors <0898> shall be rooted out <05255> of it. (Proverbs 2:22b)
Here we see that the transgressors [those whose actions are deceitful, treacherous, and without faith, as the exact opposite of the perfect; those who transgress the words of Scripture, even transgressing the Torah] shall be rooted out [pluck up, destroy, tear down, tear away] from the inheritance.
Notice also the Hebrew word ‘transgressors’ used here corresponds to the meaning of the Greek word ‘anomia,’ Strong’s number <458>, meaning “iniquity, transgression of the Law [Torah], as we see in (1John 3:4).”
Again, we are reminded of the words to be spoken to the Foolish Virgins, “Depart from me, ye that work iniquity <458>” (Matthew 7:23).
The Foolish Virgins are those who lack the safeguard of Wisdom.
The Foolish are those who began to be partakers of the true New Covenant, but because they lacked Wisdom, they became snared, and taken, through the deception of the Strange Woman, by her teaching and by her example.
Because they remained in the household of the Strange woman, and remained in the same path of her daily actions of rejecting the Law, the Torah of Yahuweh, they continued to break the New and Everlasting Covenant provisions mentioned abundantly throughout the Scriptures [a few of these are Exodus 31:13; Ezekiel 20:12, 20; Leviticus 23:1-44; Jeremiah 32:23; 44:23; John 6:53; 1Cor 5:7-8; Rev 22:14).
But are there further witnesses of Scripture to confirm the identity of this Strange Woman seen throughout Scripture?
Two or Three Witnesses: A Parallel Message
As if to confirm the warning of the Strange Woman, and to confirm her identity, we are given three additional parallel messages in Proverbs Chapters 5, 6, and 7, each slightly different from the other, to paint a vivid picture. Taken together, these other Scripture passages confirm with certainty the identity of the Strange Woman.
Very briefly, let’s notice the three parallel sets of verses:
My son, attend unto my wisdom, and bow thine ear to my understanding:
2 That thou mayest regard discretion, and that thy lips may keep knowledge.
3 For the lips of a strange woman drop as an honeycomb <05317> [The honeycomb speaks of the Scriptures (Psalms 19:10)], and her mouth is smoother than <02509> [apportions, gives out, distributes] oil [she gives out the anointing of the Holy Spirit, an activity found among New Covenant Believers]:
4 But her end [her goal] is bitter as wormwood <03939> [speaks of the curse that is promised to those who disobey Torah (Deut 27:26)], sharp as a twoedged sword [this speaks of the Word of Yahuweh, the Scriptures (Heb 4:12; Rev 1:16). Here we see a mixture of the Word of Yahuweh, mixed with wormwood, the curse promised to those who eliminate the doing of Torah].
5 Her feet [the path she is on] go down to death; her steps [the day-to-day steps of the road she travels] take hold on hell. (Proverbs 5:1-5)
23 For the commandment is a lamp; and the law [Torah] is light; and reproofs of instruction are the way of life [the path of walking in Yahushua Messiah, who is The Way, and who is our Life]:
24 To keep thee from the evil woman, from the flattery <02513> [that which is apportioned, or given out] of the tongue <03956> [the language, speech, slander] of a strange woman. (Proverbs 6:23-24)
Say unto wisdom, Thou art my sister; and call understanding thy kinswoman:
5 That they may keep thee from the strange woman, from the stranger which flattereth <02505> [apportions, gives out, distributes] with her words <0561> [her sayings — not the pure sayings of scripture]. (Proverbs 7:4-5)
Again, we see multiple confirmations. Do these sound similar to what we had found previously?
In these parallel passages, we are told that the ‘evil woman’ is the same as the Strange Woman. We see that the commandments [the Lamp], and the Torah [the Light] provide the reproof necessary for our instruction into the proper Way of Life, to keep us from the mixture of words given out by the Strange Woman, again seen as a mixture of Scripture along with her own words.
But notice also, here we are told that the goal of the Strange Woman has features of the twoedged sword, which speaks of Word of Yahuweh, and also of wormwood, which speaks of the curse that comes from disobedience to Torah. Here we see confirmation of what the Strange Woman gives out: a mixture of the Scriptures, along with her own words, a mixture void of Torah. This combination is one of the hallmark characteristics of the Harlot Congregation.
Satan knows that the curse is promised to those who disobey Torah (Deut 27:26; Gal 3:10), and so the Strange Woman has been deceived, in her ignorance, to do satan’s bidding. Most of those today who consider themselves as Believers have been subdued in this manner by the Strange Woman.
Again, we are given confirmation of the antidote:
As an antidote to becoming ensnared by the Strange Woman, the Proverbs exhort Yahuweh’s people to gain Wisdom, Understanding, and Knowledge [the knowledge of Yahuweh]; and to keep [observe, heed, “Watch”] the Commandments, and all the words of Torah, in order to avoid the portion [mixture] given out by the tongue [sayings] of the Strange Woman.
The Proverbs tell us that the words of the Commandments, indeed all the words of Torah, provide our protection from the words of the Strange Woman. In the previous section we saw that Wisdom provided our protection from the Strange Woman. From the logic of these Scripture statements alone, we can see that Wisdom is simply the keeping of Torah, by the power and Grace supplied by Yahushua-in-us.
We have seen the Strange Woman, as she speaks of the Harlot Congregations.
How can we easily discern the Strange Woman Congregations? How can we discern the Strange Woman Leadership?
We need only listen to her words, to discern what she is giving out to her household.
The words of the Strange Woman will always conflict with the words of Torah.
The ‘New Covenant’ promoted by the Strange Woman Leadership will always deny Torah as being a vital part of its foundation.
Does the Leadership of a Congregation in question promote keeping of Torah? Or do they instead, speak their own words, saying the Torah has been nullified, or done away with, in direct contradiction to all of Scripture?
The people, and the Leaders of a given Congregation as well, may not look evil to us. Most are kind, genuine and sincere. But if they have been deceived by a system of thought, then their daily actions will not be according to Torah, but considered as evil actions in Yahuweh’s eyes.
If, in the course of our actions, we refuse or reject the keeping of Yahushua’s Torah, then in Yahuweh’s eyes, we are doing evil. Confession of sin, followed by repentance, becomes our only recourse.
If we are actively keeping the Way of Life, the Way of Yahushua-in-us, then we will find ourselves obeying the Torah. That is, we will be allowing Yahushua-in-us to keep His own Torah while living within us, by His Grace, His ability and strength He supplies to us from within.
We have been warned of the Strange Woman, called the False Bride and the Harlot.
We have seen that the Strange Woman speaks of that part of Yahuweh’s Redeemed people, who have been taken captive by a particular system of thought, and have been deceived by the words of the Strange Woman, and led into disobedience in their daily walk.
As a result, the Strange Woman and those of her household have forsaken the true New Covenant. Instead, they are embracing a counterfeit or False ‘New Covenant’ which is being promoted by the Strange Woman, and given out to her household.
We have seen that the Strange Woman of Scripture has certain features and actions, by which she is easily recognised:
Features Identifying the Strange Woman of Scripture
- She speaks her own sayings mixed with Scripture, instead of the pure words of Scripture;
- She ignores, and rejects what the Schoolmaster, the Torah, has taught her;
- She refuses to walk in obedience to the Law, the Torah;
- She forgets the true New Covenant of Yahuweh, but promotes her own ideas, resulting in a counterfeit New covenant;
- She entraps Yahuweh’s people, whose lack of Wisdom makes them easy prey.
By looking carefully at the Scriptures that reveal the features and characteristics of the Strange Woman, we have discovered the great importance of avoiding being taken by her deceptions.
Let us now list some of the conclusions we have drawn, of the importance of avoiding the deception of, and being taken by, the Strange Woman:
The Importance of Avoiding the Deception of the Strange Woman
- We have seen that the antidote needed to guard against being taken by the Strange Woman is simply the Wisdom given to us by Yahuweh, the wisdom of being a “DO-er” of His Word, by His Grace, the power given to us by Yahushua who dwells within His people.
- We have seen that to receive the inheritance, Yahuweh’s people must reach out by Faith, and tread every footstep of their inheritance, even though already promised as our inheritance of the New Covenant in Yahushua.
- We have recalled that the inheritance is promised to the Saints [Believers] who are “in the Light” — that is, who are walking in the Light, by allowing the True Light [Messiah] to tread out our inheritance as He lives in us, as we walk in obedience to the Torah [the Light of being a “DO-er” of Torah, just as Yahushua did, while on earth 2,000 years ago].
- We have seen that the treading out of our inheritance is simply a matter of walking in The Way of Righteousness, which is simply walking in obedience to Torah, while we are here on earth.
- We have seen that our enemy satan wants to prevent us from “treading the footsteps” of our inheritance, because he knows that is how our inheritance can be diminished, or even removed completely.
- Thus satan tries his best to discredit the ‘Law’ [Torah] as a necessary component of the New Covenant, by using the Strange Woman — who promotes the twisting of Scripture to imply a meaning different from the plain, clear and simple meaning of Scripture in context.
- We have seen that the counterfeit ‘New Covenant’ that the Strange Woman gives out, and apportions to her household, is a Covenant that is void of Torah, thus void of any inheritance to those who embrace it.
The Strange Woman is revealed to us, in the bright light of Scripture.
Now that the Scriptures have removed the cloak from her identity and her methods, the Strange Woman can now be easily recognised.
The warning of the Strange Woman is a warning given to the Bride!
and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee.” (Rev 3:3)