One of the books in the "Let's Study God's Word Together" series with: Frank L. Hoffman
Let's begin our study of The Beginning of Woman, and of the continuation of a personal relationship between God and humans, by reading the following Scripture verses, Genesis 2: 18-25, and as usual compare them with other translations.
18. Then the Lord God said, "It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him."
19. And out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the sky, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them; and whatever the man called a living creature, that was its name.
20. And the man gave names to all the cattle, and to the birds of the sky, and to every beast of the field, but for Adam there was not found a helper suitable for him.
21. And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and he slept; then He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh at that place.
22. And the Lord God fashioned into a woman the rib which He had taken from the man, and brought her to the man.
23. And the man said,
"This is now bone of my bones,
And flesh of my flesh;
She shall be called Woman,
Because she was taken out of Man."
24. For this cause a man shall leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and they shall become one flesh.
25. And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.
Verse 18 shows more of God's concern for Man. He sees that Man requires human companionship.
In this verse He just states, "a helper suitable for him". This does not necessarily mean human.
In deciding whether or not the helper was to be human or not, remember our previous discussion on limitation of variation. Both plants and animals were created after their own "kind".
This also may be a type of testing and training for Adam, that he should relate to his "kind". And, as we shall see, he did.
Verse 19 also shows proof that all of God's creation was given into the hands of man for care.
In the Semitic culture, the act of "naming" is an indication of lordship.
God is the creator. God formed man and the animals. Yet it is God who brings these animals to Adam to name them.
God is here showing Adam in a very personal way, that he is in reality, "lord of the earth".
This is further amplified by the reinforcing statement at the end of the verse, "whatever man called a living creature, that was its name". In other words, it is finished.
This verse also shows that man had been created with sufficient intelligence to do what God wanted him to do. This also shows that man is capable of understanding what God is saying.
God did not create man only to test him to the point of failure as some may say. It always has been man's own pride and greed; part of his free will, that makes him want more than God has been willing to give him, and that turns him from God.
While we are still looking at verse 19, we should also further consider the creation process of the animals, and the words used to express the conditions.
The word, "formed", is the Hebrew word, "yttsehr", which means to make or create as a potter makes a bowl out of a lump of clay. God had already created the substance out of which He is now molding the animals.
We also see the expression of the created status of the animals. They are not just living creatures, but living souls, for the Hebrew is the same as for Man, "neh-fesh khah-yawh". In this regard, they are the same as humans; they are not some different substance; they are like us.
In verse 20 we see that Adam obeys God in two ways:
He names the animals that God brought before him. He gives them personal names, and not just species names.
He realized that none of these animals were suitable for him as a mate, as they were not of his "kind".
Here also in verse 20 we see that the man also has a name, Adam.
Some translations of the Bible do not indicate his name here, but still use the term, "the man".
The name, Adam, in Hebrew is, Aw-dawm.
The name for "first man", in Hebrew, is also "Aw-dawm".
It is also interesting to note that the name can also refer to "red", and the root portion of the name, "dawm", is the word for "blood".
The name, "Aw-dawm", can also refer to the source of his physical substance, for God formed him from the earth, "haw-ah-daw-mah".
In verses 21 and 22 we see God making, or fashioning, Eve from Adam's rib, or side, depending on the interpretation of the word.
If we look ahead to verse 23, the terms "bone of my bone", and "flesh of my flesh", would indicate more than a rib, hence rib and flesh, or a portion of Adam's side.
Note also here that there is no cruelty with God in the act. No pain is inflected. God uses His divine anesthesia on Adam, and then heals him.
And, when all was completed, God brought the woman to the man.
There is also something else very interesting here. Adam does not name his wife. At this point in time they were equal. Adam was not lord of his wife. They were equal. It was not until after the Fall that Adam names his wife. See Genesis 3:16 and 20.
16. To the woman He said,
"I will greatly multiply
Your pain in childbirth,
In pain you shall bring forth children;
Yet your desire shall be for your husband.
And he shall rule over you.
Note specifically the last part of this verse, "And he shall rule over you." God tells the woman that her husband shall now rule over her. Part of the equality has been removed. So, note what happens in verse 3:20.
20. Now the man called his wife Eve, because she was the mother of all the living.
In verse 23 we see the complete poetic reference to the making of Eve. We also see the generic name of both man and woman, not their given names.
The name of "man", in Hebrew, is "eesh".
The name of "woman", in Hebrew, is "ee-shawh".
As we are told in this verse, "ee-shawh" indicates that woman was taken from man, or is "of" man.
Remember for future reference, that Adam was the only man made without man or woman; and that Eve was the only woman made without woman; and the Jesus was the only man born of woman without man.
An interesting side study exists in the Hebrew of these two words for man and woman. They both relate to the words for fire, "aysh", and a short form of the name of God, "Yaw".
The word for "fire" is formed of the Hebrew letters, aleph-shiyn.
The word for "man" is formed of the Hebrew letters, aleph-yowd-shiyn.
The word of "woman" is formed of the Hebrew letters, aleph-shiyn-he.
If we remove the letters of the word fire, aleph-shiyn, from both "man" and "woman", we are left with a "yowd" from "man" and a "he" from "woman".
By then joining these letters as one, we have "Yowd-he", or God.
Refer to Matthew 3:11 for reference to the Holy Spirit and "fire", as explained by John the Baptist.
11. "As for me, I baptize you with water for repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, and I am not fit to remove His sandals; He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
How did we become living souls?
When God breathed His Spirit, or breath, into us. God molded us into our form, and fired us with life by His own breath, or Spirit. Thus, we are of God and fire. Thus, we became living souls, neh-fesh khah-yawh.
Since the word of God also describes the other created beings (animals) as neh-fesh khah-yawh, too, shouldn't this lead us to treat all other animals with respect, and acknowledge that we all have rights as fellow creatures of God, for we all have His fire of life within us.
Continuing this thought as related to Adam and Eve, they both had their own breath given to them, they each contain their own "fire", but because they were formed one from the other, they share in what God made, and it is together that they make God's work complete.
Also note Acts 2:2-4.
2. And suddenly there came from heaven a noise like a violent, rushing wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting.
3. And there appeared to them tongues as of fire distributing themselves, and they rested on each one of them.
4. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit was giving them utterance.
God is here telling us something very important and special about His creation of us. He has made us from Himself.
In verse 24, we have the perfect definition of marriage.
Man and Woman are to separate themselves from their families and be joined into a new family as one flesh.
Could it be that as individuals and while unmarried, we may still have the "fire" (both fleshly and spiritually) as well, but that God is not complete in us until we become one flesh, in other words, when we marry?
The sin of fleshly lusts between a man and woman is covered, and sanctified, in the marriage relationship.
Do not the fires of passion run wild in our sexually free society?
Such a relationship does not have the blessing of God. And, He is absent even in name from all such relationships.
But sin did not exist before the Fall, and this statement of oneness is their union with God.
But we are also told about leaving father and mother, and they did not exist before the Fall. Thus what we are looking at, is most likely a way to enhance both conditions of flesh and spirit.
There is something special that takes place in the union of a man and a woman, and that the union must be preserved intact without the addition of any other people.
Almost all sexually transmitted diseases are spread from unions outside the sanctified marriage relationship.
Note what the Lord Himself tells us in Matthew 19:3-12.
3. And some Pharisees came to Him, testing Him, and saying, "Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any cause at all?"
4. And He answered and said, "Have you not read, that He who created them from the beginning made them male and female,
5. and said, 'For this cause a man shall leave his father and mother; and the two shall become one flesh'?
6. "Consequently they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God had joined together, let no man separate."
7. They said to Him, "Why then did Moses command to give her a certificate and divorce her?"
8. He said to them, "Because of your hardness of heart, Moses permitted you to divorce your wives; but from the beginning it has not been this way.
9. "And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery."
10. The disciples said to Him, "If the relationship of the man with his wife is like this, it is better not to marry."
11. But He said to them, "Not all men can accept this statement, but only those to whom it has been given.
12. "For there are eunuchs who were born that way from their mother's womb; and there are eunuchs who were made eunuchs by men; and there are also eunuchs who made themselves eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. He who is able to accept this, let him accept it."
In Matthew 19:7-9, we see what I believe is the best and clearest explanation of the fact that God does offer us concessions to do things against His will, but that doesn't mean that we are to desire to live in those concessions. We should desire to do the will of God.
Two other major Biblical concessions are the eating of flesh, and the sacrifice of animals, but they are discussions for another time.
If we look at Matthew 19:10-12, we get an answer to our questions concerning Genesis 2:24. If we cannot live a sexually sinless life in the will of God while single, then marriage sanctifies those desires in the union of a man and woman before God.
In verse 25, we have the emphasis that sin, or more specifically, the knowledge of good and evil had not entered into Adam's and Eve's lives.
There is nothing immoral about the body, if we limit our thoughts to it being a wonderful work of God, but we don't, we think about other things when we look at a naked body. And if it is our body that is being looked at by another person, we become embarrassed.
Adam and Eve were not ashamed, because they were not aware of evil and had no sinful thoughts.
The world was a perfect paradise at this time, and this was God's intent. This is something we should not forget as we look at the world around us.
Today, it is only in our new birth in Jesus Christ, that we can have a taste of what true paradise is like. And it is in our new birth, that we have the hope of our future paradise, heaven.
As a final thought to our study of creation let us consider Matthew 6:10:
10. Thy kingdom come,
Thy will be done
on earth as it is in heaven.
If we believe this portion of The Lord's Prayer, and we pray it, then shouldn't we be doing whatever we can to bring it to fruition? Shouldn't we, as born again believers, be living in the perfect will of God rather than in His concessions?
I believe these are some the good works that God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them (Ephesians 2:10).