This week our devotions are written by Wendy Reaume. We’re excited she’s back and writing for us again.
Eve is our first woman of the Old Testament this week. The first woman and the last creative act of God the Father during creation. “But for Adam no suitable helper was found. So, the LORD God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man’s ribs and then closed up the place with flesh. Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man.” (Genesis 2:20b-22)
Genesis 1 begins with the account of creation. We quickly get an overview of the order, “So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them,” (Genesis 1:27) and then in chapter 2 we get a more in depth look at the set-up of the garden of Eden and the creation of man. What is interesting to me about Eve is the difference in the creation of her and Adam. “Then the LORD God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.” (Genesis 2:7) This is very different from the making of Eve. All of creation is fiat meaning ‘it is spoken, and it comes into being.’ But with Adam, God actually takes the dust that is already created, forms it with His hands, and then breathes the breath of life into him. Of course, God could simply have spoken and had man come into being. But He doesn’t and this stands in stark contrast to the rest of creation. The result is this detail to the creation of man highlights the utmost of detail and care, and the supremacy of man over all creation both by the attention given, and the declaration. God doesn’t say ‘it is good’ (as He does with the rest of creation), but it is VERY good.
Not so Eve. God doesn’t simply speak. God doesn’t take the dust of the ground and form and breath. He takes Eve directly from Adam’s side. “But for Adam no suitable helper was found. So, the LORD God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man’s ribs and then closed up the place with flesh. Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man.” (Genesis 2:20b-22)
Again, God is making a statement. He could have simply created by fiat. He could have repeated what He did with Adam. But He purposely does it differently. Genesis 2:24 further emphasizes this when God writes, ‘That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.’ That is an interesting statement considering Adam and Eve are the only human beings ever to live on the face of the Earth that don’t have a mother and a father! Clearly, that directive is for us…all of us who follow. We are to ‘leave and cleave’ to the one who we are created for literally ‘out of his side.’
The creation story also reiterates it is good, it is good, it is good over and over again. Then we have the creation of man and woman and it is very good. But there is one more interjection. In Genesis 2:18 it is declared, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.” All jokes on why it isn’t good for a man to be alone aside, this is really the ultimate earthly love story. God creates man. God parades all the pairs of animals in front of Adam until he sees and feels his need for companionship, and then God takes from the man himself to create the ‘perfect partner for him.’ Not a partner who is perfect, but the perfect partner for him.
When they first date, couples love to belong to each other. They hold hands, walk side by side not behind each other, and proudly introduce their future spouse as ‘my girlfriend, my boyfriend, my soulmate, my fiancé, etc.’ They are physically and literally tucked under the arm and at the side.
It takes both male and female to accurately reflect the image of God. Each has a unique and creative role, and as they work side by side doing ministry, living life, raising their family, and being companions, together they reflect the image of God. God in three persons; the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. The image of God in two persons: male and female, husband and wife.
Eve is not just the final creative act of God but the completion of mankind. What a role to embrace! Today as the world fights for equality, rights, freedom of choices and attempts to redefine our worth, let us rest in the truth that God already had it figured out. Together, male and female, we reflect His image. Each one of us is unique not just in our gender but in our calling to do good works to the glory of His name, that those lost and confused around us might see our love for each other, our embracing of who we are, and in doing so, come to know Him.
“A new command I give you; Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” (John 13:34, 35)
Let this command to love one another begin with our self, and with our spouse.