These are rough notes from the community group I lead:
In the Beginning…God officiated a wedding
In the Beginning, God gave a bride to Christ
In the Recreation of all things, there shall be a wedding
– All of this is a “mystery”
– Ephesians 5:32 (ESV) — 32 This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church.
Genesis 1:26–28 (ESV) — 26 Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” 27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. 28 And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
Us – God is one, but 3, relational being
Image – man (male and female) reflect God’s image, different be design, reflects unity and complementary roles
God blessed them – beatitude and benediction upon the created order
Creation Mandate –
– Fruitful, multiply, fill: children
– Subdue, dominion: subdue does not mean to press down, but rather to exercise authority in a way that begets harmony in the created order. God rules providentially by means, though not confined to them.
- They were co-regents over the created order
Genesis 2:18–25 (ESV) — 18 Then the Lord God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.” 19 Now out of the ground the Lord God had formed every beast of the field and every bird of the heavens and brought them to the man to see what he would call them. And whatever the man called every living creature, that was its name. 20 The man gave names to all livestock and to the birds of the heavens and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper fit for him. 21 So the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and while he slept took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh. 22 And the rib that the Lord God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man. 23 Then the man said, “This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.” 24 Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. 25 And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.
LORD GOD – Yahweh, God’s personal intimate, covenant reference, shows relational nature of God’s dealings. Generic Elohim was used in Chp. 1
Not good – general concession for all, requires a special gift to remain single and to be relationally fulfilled. In the immediate context, it was impossible for God’s mandate to fill earth and beget a multitude of people who would be born into God’s creation.
Helper fit for him – subordinate in function, complementary,
A man shall leave his father and his mother mother…holf fast…one flesh – the ongoing normative pattern considering that God will no longer just create fully mature males and females and pair them.
Some necessary affirmations:
- Men and Women are equal in dignity and value. Ontologically made from the same stuff, equally in God’s image, life considered worthy of same punitive justice, etc.
- Men and women have different roles in marriage as part of the created order. Some reasons:
- Representation of Adam as head of human race
i. We see this when we examine the places where the same verb (the Hebrew verb qārā’ [“to call”]) is used in contexts of naming in Genesis 1–2:
ii. Genesis 1:5: “God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night.”
iii. Genesis 1:8: “And God called the expanse Heaven.”
iv. Genesis 1:10: “God called the dry land Earth, and the waters that were gathered together he called Seas.”
v. Genesis 2:19: So out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the heavens and brought them to the man to see what he would call them. And whatever the man called every living creature, that was its name.”
vi. Genesis 2:20: “The man gave names to all livestock and to the birds of the heavens and to every beast of the field.”
vii. Genesis 2:23: “Then the man said, ‘This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.’ ”
viii. In each of these verses prior to Genesis 2:23, the same verb, the Hebrew verb qārā’, had been used. Just as God demonstrated His sovereignty over day and night, heavens, earth, and seas by assigning them names, so Adam demonstrated his authority over the animal kingdom by assigning them names. The pattern would have been easily recognized by the original readers, and they would have seen a continuation of the pattern when Adam said, “she shall be called Woman.”
i. After Adam and Eve sinned, they hid from the Lord among the trees of the garden. Then we read, “But the Lord God called to the man and said to him, ‘Where are you?’ ” (Gen. 3:9).
ii. In the Hebrew text, the expression “the man” and the pronouns “him” and “you” are all singular. Even though Eve had sinned first, God first summoned Adam to give account for what had happened. This suggests that Adam was the one primarily accountable for what had happened in his family.
i. Eve was created as a helper for Adam, not Adam as a helper for Eve.
ii. After God had created Adam and gave him directions concerning his life in the Garden of Eden, we read, “Then the Lord God said, ‘It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him’ ” (Gen. 2:18).
iii. It is true that the Hebrew word here translated “helper” (‘ezer) is often used of God who is our helper elsewhere in the Bible. (See Ps. 33:20; 70:5; 115:9; etc.) But the word “helper” does not by itself decide the issue of what God intended the relationship between Adam and Eve to be. The nature of the activity of helping is so broad that it can be done by someone who has greater authority, someone who has equal authority, or someone who has lesser authority than the person being helped. For example, I can help my son do his homework. Or I can help my neighbor move his sofa. Or my son can help me clean the garage. Yet the fact remains that in the situation under consideration, the person doing the helping puts himself in a subordinate role to the person who has primary responsibility for carrying out the activity. Thus, even if I help my son with his homework, the primary responsibility for the homework remains his and not mine. I am the helper. And even when God helps us, with respect to the specific task at hand He still holds us primarily responsible for the activity, and He holds us accountable for what we do.
iv. But Genesis 2 does not merely say that Eve functions as Adam’s “helper” in one or two specific events. Rather, it says that God made Eve for the purpose of providing Adam with help, one who by virtue of creation would function as Adam’s “helper”: “Then the Lord God said, ‘It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him’ ” (Gen. 2:18).
v. Yet in the same sentence God emphasizes that she is not to help Adam as one who is inferior to him. Rather, she is to be a helper “fit for him,” and here the Hebrew word kenegdô means “a help corresponding to him,” that is, “equal and adequate to himself.” So Eve was created as a helper, but as a helper who was Adam’s equal. She was created as one who differed from him, but who differed from him in ways that would exactly complement who Adam was.
i. Gen 3.16
- “desire” = usurping, combative
- “rule” = mashal, military rulers, conquerors, God’s providence, subdoing, this is man fighting for his role through harsh rulership to keep the woman in her place, a distortion of what it would have looked like.
ii. Restoration is not an obliteration of the complementary roles, but a right practice of the complementary roles:
- Colossians 3:18–19 (ESV) — 18 Wives, submit to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord. 19 Husbands, love your wives, and do not be harsh with them.
- Adam as prophet, priest, king…assumed in Jesus as second Adam, who didn’t just happen to be a man, but was a man for a reason. Was a sexual being.
i. Prophet – intended to convey the Word of God to Eve
ii. Priest – was a mediator to Eve in a Sacramental sense, the discharge of sacred duties were primarily his, was to abstain from tree of knowledge of good and evil and gain access to tree of life, was supposed to lead the way
iii. King – was supposed to protect the tree and Garden of Eden as sacred within the Kingdom and destroy any intruders, expand God’s rule through administration of duties given him, assisted by Eve.
- Are we not glorifying God if we remain single or if we are married and have no children or if we limit the number of children?
- Do you see the goodness in God’s created order?
- Based on Col. 3:18-19, can you better imagine what creation would have looked like if sin never came into the created order?
- Do you think that our general rejection of any authority is part of our falleness?
- Men, how are you to lead your wives?
- Women, how are you to submit to your husbands?
- Single person, do you embrace your role in singleness or future marriage?
- Parents, are you training your kids to embrace their gender role in future marriage? Are you modeling what that should look like?
Grudem, W. A. (2002). Biblical foundations for manhood and womanhood. Foundations for the family series (27–28). Wheaton, Ill.: Crossway Books.
© 2010, Rick Hogaboam. All rights reserved.