Creation of Woman
The creation of womankind is detailed in Genesis 1:27 (from a high level), and Genesis 2:21-22. Like man, woman was created on the 6th day—based on the Biblical account she was likely the final thing God created. You could view this in three different ways:
- Woman was an after thought
- Woman was the final draft; the culmination of all God created
- God created things in a particular order according to His purpose
Oh the places one could go with options one and two (and we all know I'd pick option two)... However, if I'm being unbiased, I would affirm the third option. God created each detail of our world according to His plan and why one thing (or person) was created before (or after) another is based upon that design. It is not a statement of worth or importance.
In the Image of God?
One of the most important things revealed at creation is that we are created in God's image! Now some translations read that "man" was created in God's image, while others use "humankind" or "mankind." I took the looked up the original Hebrew word that's being translated and found it is “adam.” Adam in Hebrew can refer to mankind or Adam the individual, however the word for man, as in male human, is a different word entirely (it doesn't appear until Genesis 2, after God has created woman). Thus, here the text is either saying God created all humans in His image, or He created Adam (the person) in His image. Personally, I believe it is the former, but for those who believe it is the latter: we see that woman being formed from man is created in the image of man, and since man is created in the image of God, woman must also be created in the image of God.
Value and Importance
Have you ever heard a parent say their child was embarrassing them? Or rather, has your parent ever said to you "don't embarrass me"? We are made in the image of our parents and are thus a reflection of them; not just physically, but in how we behave. No one puts their name on something they are ashamed of, and no one wants something bearing their likeness on display if it is shameful. Similarly, for God to make us in His image there had to be an expectation that we wouldn't embarrass Him, a measure of trust if you will. It also cements our place as His children.
Purpose of Woman
The purpose of woman isn't revealed until Genesis 2; in this more detailed account of creation, we see a glimpse at why God created a counterpart for Adam.
Alone is not Good
The first (and only) thing God says isn't good in His perfect creation is that Adam is alone. I've heard many people reduce this statement to the aspect of marriage, but I think it's much bigger than a statement about being single vs. married. Ecclesiastes 4:8-11 goes over a whole list of reasons why two is better than one, and Paul tells us that for some it is better to remain single (1 Corinthians 7), which would be a contradiction if alone-ness is about marriage specifically.
One reason we know that this can't be a statement about singleness also comes from the fact that it is slightly more probably for a couple to produce a girl than a boy. In the US, there are more women than men. If God intended every person to marry, there would be a one to one ratio—or you could argue He intended polygamy; however zero cases of that worked out well Biblically...
More than likely, God's statement about it not being good to be alone was about humans being isolated in general, considering Adam was literally the only human in existence. A complementary companion was created in the form of Eve. Despite the fact that I don't believe this statement can be translated into singleness is bad, I do believe that God created male and female to balance each other and that male-female relationships can provide something our same gender friendships cannot.
The word in Genesis 2:18 that describes Eve's relationship to Adam is the one that causes the most confusion in society. Before we look at the actual meaning, let's look at a comparison of how different translations describe woman's relationship to man.
helper corresponding to
helper as his partner
Ok, so the ISV is kind of out there with its translation, but the others cluster around "companion" and "helper."
If I'm being honest, I think those that read companion or partner—all of which are more modern translations—are an attempt to soften the passage. The original Hebrew actually does translate to help or helper. However, it doesn't mean help like maid or servant. If you trace the usage of the word throughout the Old Testament, you will find that in most cases, it refers to a saving help or a strength, generally coming from God Himself. Examples of this are Exodus 18:4, Deuteronomy 33:29, Psalms 115:9, and Hosea 13:9.
The Significance of the Rib
Eve is Created from Adam's Rib, while Adam was created from the dust (Genesis 2:7). So when God got ready to create Eve, why didn't He create Eve from the dust of the ground? Instead he pulled out a rib from Adam side to create her… One could argue it was to link them and make them one flesh—literally—but I think it's a lot more than that. Everything God does is a vision of something or it is symbolic of something. It is spiritual and physical, and so I asked myself:
- what is the significance of your ribs?
- What is the purpose of your ribs?
- What does it mean to take a rib out? Like if I were to get injured and they were to take a rib from me what would happen? How would that affect me as a person?
- Why do I need ribs?
Your ribs are a bone in your body, just like an arm bone or your finger bones. In most cases, the bones in your body are just covered by skin—may be a little bit of of meat or muscle around it. They're generally there for structure. Your ribs however serve a couple of other functions. They actually form a protective cage around your vital organs. Behind your ribs are your lungs, heart, and all kinds of other organs that you need to breathe and to you have your blood pumped through your body. Aside from your brain, it's where all of the most important organs you have are located, and your ribs serve as a protective case so that if something happens there is a layer of protection before getting to your ribs. So if you were missing a rib, that would be the weak spot that would be the perfect place for someone to go in with a knife to stab you, because that is where you are missing protection.
I think that's interesting for many many reasons. One of those reasons is the story of the fall. In Genesis 3, the serpent does not go to Adam to try to cause destruction, he goes to Eve, Adam’s weak spot. God could have created him without a weak spot, but He deliberately created Eve in this manner. I believe this signified that Eve needed Adam and Adam needed Eve. We see this logic in 1 Corinthians 11:11 where it talks about the fact that men and women are not independent of each other.
About the Series
The Woman of God series is a new series of videos produced for my
References and Footnotes
- "Strongs H120. אָדָם". Blue Letter Bible; visited December 5, 2021
- "Age and Sex Composition: 2010". Census.gov; visited December 5, 2021
- "Strongs H5828. ". Blue Letter Bible; visited December 5, 2021
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