Biblical People

Biblical People: Joanna

Joanna only appears in Luke’s biography of Jesus. And then just twice, but we can learn much from what Luke writes about her.

First, she, along with several other women, helps care for Jesus and support his work. More on this later.

Next, Joanna also joins Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of James and John (remember, they’re the Sons of Thunder) in wanting to embalm Jesus’s body, which they don’t get to do since he rises from the dead.

A third thing we know about Joanna is that Jesus casts demons out of her, along with Mary Magdalene, Susanna, and several others. Jesus relieves them of their afflictions. Joanna’s response is to do what she can for him. 

Now, on to the good part.

The fourth thing about Joanna, which is both significant and easy to overlook, is that she’s married to Chuza. Why does this matter?

Chuza manages the household of Herod (2). Again, huh?

Here’s why: Herod opposes Jesus. Chuza works for Herod. Herod pays Chuza. Chuza’s wife, Joanna, gives money to support Jesus. This means that in an indirect way Herod financially supports Jesus. If Herod knew, he’d surely explode in anger.

When God blesses us with money or possessions, what we do with them matters.

Are we using the money God blesses us with to help others? 

[Discover more about Joanna in Luke 8:1–3 and Luke 24:1–11.]

Learn about other biblical women in Women of the Bible, available in audiobook, e-book, paperback, and hardcover.

A lifelong student of the Bible, Peter DeHaan, PhD, wrote the 1,000-page website to encourage people to explore the Bible. His main blog and many books urge Christians to push past the status quo and reconsider how they practice their faith in every area of their lives.

By Peter DeHaan

Peter writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and make a faith that matters. Learn more at