Eve, Adam’s Helpmeet

Ryan Robinson

It is easiest to identify Ryan as both theologian and tech guy. By day, Ryan is a Technical Consultant work with PeaceWorks Technology Solutions. There, he works on websites, CRMs, and SharePoint implementations. Along with blogging here, Ryan is a founding member of the MennoNerds blogging network and a contributor to the book A Living Alternative.

7 Responses

  1. Adam Dickison says:

    It’s funny this sunday began a study focused on Matt 5:9 (blessed are the peacemakers) and the first thing we did was take a look at “shalom” and what that idea encompasses. Then we went back to the garden to look at shalom before and after the fall. one thing that we noticed, was that prior to the fall there was shalom between man and creation, man and woman (or man and mankind), and between God and man. We sort of focused our discussion on the shalom between Adam and Eve as a way to understand shalom in our marriages, but also in the greater context of with other humans. I wanted to share these thoughts that came out of the conversation.

    When God creates woman and man sees her for the first time, he sings/speaks this beautiful poetry of how they are one. It’s a song of their equality and union and closeness. There is shalom between them, nothing separates them.

    “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man.”

    As time goes on the snake inserts a lie into their relationship with God. Basically the lie was that there was not shalom between man and God. God was keeping things from man to subjugate him. Even though this debt didn’t exist, humankind believed the lie and in response ACTUALLY broke shalom by disobeying God.

    So God comes looking for man and woman and finds them hiding. In response to their disobedience God gives lays out some curses. The curse given to woman (which I think is really given to all humans) is that shalom will be broken between her and her husband (between mankind). Gods says

    “Your desire will be to control your husband and he will dominate you”

    The broken shalom between people is that we try to control and dominate one another. Our relationships have become power based and hierarchical. That is the root of sexism, the root or racism, and just about any other ism you can think of. power dominates.

    The curse given to man is that shalom will be broken between mankind and creation. The perfect creation that mankind was to tend and that was supposed to sustain mankind will be at war. creation will work against mankind and mankind will have to struggle against it to eat. the kicker is that the day man dies he’ll get swallowed up by the thing he fought against all his life. he can’t win.

    Then finally we see shalom broken between God and man when mankind is banished from the garden and their close relationship with God is no more.

    ALL of that, to point out this wonderful insight that was brought up! After the curses are given, particularly the curse that man and woman’s (or mankind) relationships will be predicated on control and domination, adam does something interesting……..he names woman. He can’t wait to exert his power and just like he named all the other animals that he was given “dominion over” he names the woman. The same woman to whom he first sang “bone of my bone, flesh of my flesh”

    The first fallen act of life within the curse is that adam names his wife just like a common beast of the field. The first act of our fallen natures was to form hierarchy with people, exert power over them, oppress them, and rob them of their humanity and image-bearer status. This idea that God created us hierarchy as men and women (or in any hierarchy) just doesn’t seem to bear out. Surely it may be the way of fallen men, but I can find nothing to support it as people who are called live as children of God.

    • Wow, that’s the first time I’ve noticed that Adam names Eve right after the curse goes into effect. Great comment! Some of the other stuff in there will probably get touched on more later in this series, too 🙂

    • Edna Rabago says:

      I went back to my Bible after reading this comment. Never really noticed Adam naming Eve after the fall. We do learn new things every day! 😀 Thanks for sharing!

  2. stevekimes says:

    Exactly. Actually, the Hebrew word “helper, help” is used most frequently with God as the subject, like Psalm 30:10, so we certainly can’t say that the word in any way implies a lesser partner.

  3. Gary says:

    This is a hugely important issue in my neck of the woods, and this word ezer is the crux of it. In addition to what you say, this article says that the help comes from God, not the woman (she is the help God gives) and at least before the fall, she is not subordinate in any way. http://www.cwgministries.org/who-is-the-helper

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