What Is A Help Meet? Part Two

It was not good for Adam to be alone, so God made him a help meet. Help meet can be translated a “help against.” The interpretation of that possible translation would go something like this:

Eve was created to be a benevolent and loving adversary, one who would stand before Adam face to face. If Eve loves Adam, then she wants the best for him. If Adam loves Eve, he wants the best for her. Adam and Eve are one in their relationship, but also because she is flesh of his flesh and bone of his bone. What’s good for one is good for the other.

Male and female are both in God’s image and reveal things about God’s character. With only one we would miss out on who God is, something would be missing from creation. Together male and female can help each other know God and live better.

Unfortunately, this benevolent adversary relationship hit a snag.

Eve listened to the Serpent and ate from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. She did not discuss this with her husband. She did not act out of love. According to the Bible, she acted out of fleshly desire (Genesis 3:6).

Once God confronted them over their disobedience, God handed out some curses, the painful results of their rebellion against the one who gave them life. Note the curse handed out to Eve in Genesis 3:16, “I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.”

Here’s where The Fall really messes with this benevolent, loving adversary relationship. Before The Fall the concept of an adversary was beneficial. We hear “adversary” as a bad word with negative connotations, and often it is. But done right, it can actually be beneficial.

But after The Fall the male female relationship will be tough. Your desire will be to your husband and he will rule over you. The same Hebrew phrase is used in Genesis 4:7. “If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.” Sin desires to rule Cain and will rule over him if he doesn’t take care of his first sin immediately. Cain did not, and next thing you know sin had him out killing his brother.

That same phrase is used in relation to Eve and her husband. Eve will desire to overpower her man and her man will rule over her. It’s all messed up. Now the male female relationship is truly just adversarial, almost as enemy combatants. It’s how we see the world acting and talking about males and females today. It’s ugly and helps no one.

Love is hard after The Fall. It might have even been hard before The Fall seeing as how Eve didn’t act very lovingly even then! Now the situation is possible for a woman to be entirely unhelpful to the point God had to put Proverbs 14:1 in the Bible, “a wise woman builds her house, a foolish woman tears it down with her hands.” It’s a sad thing, but happens many times.

The institution of the family is the natural result of a male female relationship. If both male and female love each other and desire to help each other even if it means disagreeing, then the home will be built up. But unwise, unloving people will tear their own families apart.

To me, if we take this benevolent and loving adversary, one who stands before you and has an opinion shared with the intent of being helpful, sounds a lot like iron sharpening iron.

If both male and female are loving and able to talk through the other’s stupid ideas! Then that family has a real shot at making it! But as soon as love leaves and selfishness and fleshly desire takes over, the entire family will be torn to pieces.

Being an adversary is not necessarily a bad thing, it is actually what is needed to make people better. We’ll test that theory next time and see if the Bible carries that idea into other relationships.

Place edifying remarks here

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