As Seen on Sunday: Bone of my Bone
We provide a recap of the Sunday sermon to encourage you in the faith each week but it's not the same thing as being here.
First, let me make it known that the irony of a man speaking on women is not lost on me. I have taken this topic very seriously and I hope that I do it justice. Since people can proof text any position on women from the Bible, I hope to speak the truth by appealing to the creation account and life after the fall.
18Then the Lord God said, "It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him." 19Now 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. 20The 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. 21So 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. 22And the rib that the Lord God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man. 23Then 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."24Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. 25And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed. - Genesis 2:18-25
The first thing I want to say is that humanity was created in the Image of God. Genesis 1:27 “God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” I say this because I am confused how people sometimes try to make it seem as if women somehow have less of the Image. There is nothing here that indicates that women are any different. Women ARE image bearers. Some men treat their dogs better than they do women. Unfortunately, I doubt anything I say will have any effect on men like that.
Then the Bible zooms in on humanity. We see Adam and he is alone. Even after all the animals are brought to him it is decided that none of them is a suitable helper for "man" so "woman" was taken from man. With a mentality of “the help,” a helper might seem to be negative but the same word for helper here is translated help in Psalms when referring to how God is our help. It is not a derogatory towards women to be a helper.
It is interesting that although man was made of dirt just as the animals were, none of the animals could offer the proper companionship that the text seems to imply I think women being taken from man seems to indicate:
- That Adam was incomplete without Eve.
- Maybe I’m not supposed to say in a sermon about the equality of genders but clearly, God's creation was not complete; God called creation good but then said that it was not good for man to be alone.
- Humanity is in the image of God since they were created as male and female.
- If humans are image bearers of God, it makes me question if we can have a clear idea of what the image of God is without both genders (that can be a discussion question since that is a speculation on my part).
Some people would want to say that since "woman" was not created apart from "man" that woman must then be dependent or subservient to man, but I disagree with this and I believe Adam’s reaction does not lend to this interpretation.
I have heard the saying that something had been taken above or below the ribs it would indicate the women’s place in regards to men, but since it was the ribs it indicates the equal nature of women. I tend to agree, even if that's a quaint way of saying it.
Adam calls her “This is now bone of my bones, And flesh of my flesh” aside from being literal comments of her creation, this sentiment seems very caring. Like when someone says that you are family or blood, literally she his bone of his bones and flesh of his flesh, to mistreat her would be to mistreat himself. I think this goes for all relationships: male and female, husband and wife, teacher and student, boss and worker. Everyone is our neighbor and to mistreat a person, is to mistreat ourselves and to mistreat God.
Even if you see Adam being the head of the household, the Bible indicates the responsibility of such a position versus the power that we tend to associate with it. The Bible shows that the rulership of the male position comes from the fall: “Yet your desire will be for your husband, And he will rule over you.” For this reason, I see any struggle for position to be a result of the fall and not God’s original plan for the relationship between men and women. Just as humanity wanted to be like God, struggling for position, the men and women now also struggle against each other.
If men were willing to give up their lives for others and remembered the golden rule, this struggle for position and dominance would be exchanged for equality of persons. We would respect each other too much to wrong each other.
But it's not just respect. Even if it was, we have been failing to respect and value others for lifetimes. Obviously, it does not work. We see interpersonal love and respect on a micro scale, but on the macro scale we see the depravity of mankind. To expect people to teach each other right is very humanistic when our emphasis should be Theistic.
26for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith. 27For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 28There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29And if you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's offspring, heirs according to promise. - Galatians 3:26-29
The way we treat other people is clearly a heart issue. We as Christians claim to be one in Christ but make women second class citizens. I don't expect the world to get this equality thing right, but I do expect Christians to move past gender roles, socioeconomic status, and race as weapons of discrimination and control.
I think that some of this comes when we realize that there is something, no, someone bigger than ourselves.
Governments have tried, but they are composed of people, and people are imperfect. We end up with corrupt and materialistic people in power saying that everyone else is equal. Even in the US, we despise “the one percent.”
We are all one in Christ as He is our Lord. The incorruptible, all good, perfect, and just ruler who shows us grace and mercy through faith in Him.
If we are to love the Lord our God with all our heart and with all our soul and with all our mind. and love our neighbor as ourselves, what does the way we currently treat others, specifically women, say about us? And why do we just accept the way things are?