An Army brat. The author of 17 in-depth Bible studies. International speaker. Survivor. Blessed with a sense of humor. Lover of God. Fierce about Scripture.
Love her or hate her, there is no denying that Beth Moore has made a significant impact in the realm of Christian teaching.
At age 18, Moore sensed the call of God on her life. The direction was not clear, so she determined to simply say “yes” to whatever He might ask. After receiving a degree in political science, she married Keith. Two daughters followed in quick succession. For years, she focused on her family and served her church, speaking at luncheons, teaching an aerobics class and lending a hand wherever she could. After taking a Bible doctrine class, Moore discerned her life’s work: Sharing the Gospel through the in-depth exploration and teaching of Scripture. In 1994, Living Proof Ministries was founded.
She has been criticized for being too serious and for not being serious enough. For being too “mystical” (the definition of which depends on the accuser). For being too not-Calvinist. For teaching men. For being too emotional. For writing too little and for writing too much. The list goes on ad infinitum. Yet Moore has to a large extent remained above the fray. She never claims to be the best teacher. She never claims to be infallible. She doesn’t require that every Christian person agree with everything she thinks or says. She claims only to love the Lord who saved her and to possess a very real desire to see others know Him.
This, she has done for me.
Long have I been a student with an insatiable need to understand as much as possible. Beth Moore tapped into that. She taught me how to love Scripture.
The first real Bible study I ever did was When Godly People do Ungodly Things. I was 21-years-old and newly engaged. Though I had asked Christ to save me as a young child, with all the understanding and innocence of a child, my high school and college years had left me feeling cold, even occasionally hostile, to the things of God. (You can read my story here). Chris and I had only recently begun attending church together. I don’t recall what prompted me to join that group for that study.
Those weeks in the autumn of 2005 set me on a course of study that will never be completed this side of Heaven. Beth Moore taught me how to critically engage. She showed me the importance of context and modeled how to consider varying interpretations of difficult verses. She gave me permission to disagree with her conclusions – and there are times when I do. She told me to seek out other teachers, other viewpoints – and I have.
Above all, Beth Moore showed me how to love and be loved by Jesus. He is the great passion of her life. Her dependence on Him is clear in every line of text, every word spoken. She makes no secret of her difficult past, of her deeply sinful nature, of how weak she is on her own. That is part of the beauty of her teaching. She gives us the space to be flawed and desperate humans who seek a perfect and holy God.
The meandering road I’ve taken through a theology degree and various teaching positions can be traced to the moment when I signed up for that first study. I am grateful to Beth Moore for showing up and stepping up, no matter what her detractors have to say. May we all strive to be so single-minded in our devotion to the Lord.
For all entries in the 31 Days for the Ladies series, go here.