#MeToo and Genesis 2

18 The Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.” … But for Adam no suitable helper was found. 21 So the Lord God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man’s ribs and then closed up the place with flesh. 22 Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.  (Genesis 2:18-22)
22 Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Saviour. 24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything. 25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her … Husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— 30 for we are members of his body. 31 “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” 32 This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. 33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.”  
(Ephesians 5:22-33)
The #MeToo movement has exposed many ways in which women have been mistreated by men over the years. When some people read Genesis 2 and Ephesians 5, they complain that these verses justify such mistreatment. Why was Eve created out of Adam, and not Adam out of Eve? Why is Eve called Adam’s helper, rather than the other way around? How can the New Testament command wives to submit to their own husbands? Isn’t all of this a little bit outdated, and even borderline sexist? Definitely not, if we take note of what these verses actually say.

The Hebrew word ‘ezer, which describes Eve as Adam’s ‘helper’ is normally used throughout the Bible to describe God himself. It doesn’t convey inferiority. Far from it! God is far greater than any of us, yet he humbles himself to help us. Perhaps that’s why the Lord created Eve out of Adam’s side, rather than out of his feet. She isn’t less than him, to be trampled on by him. She is his equal, to be held close to his heart, because he really needs her.

In Ephesians 5, the Apostle Paul explains that God created marriage to be a mirror of the relationship between his Son Jesus and the Church. It isn’t easy for a wife to trust her husband and to submit to him as the Church submits to Christ – but it gets a whole lot easier when her husband lays his life down for her, as Christ did for the Church. Jesus is the Lord, but he doesn’t lord it over the Church. He serves her! If it is rare to see a marriage that truly reflects this, then what a glorious opportunity for us to proclaim the Gospel together! Whether you are married or not, you are part of a church family in which God wants to use many marriages to declare the glory of his Gospel to the world.
1)   How can you pray for the men and women of Everyday Church? Whether married or unmarried, how can the loving way in which they interact with one another bring great glory to God in a battle-of-the-sexes world?

2)   What would it look like if the husbands at Everyday Church truly loved their wives as Jesus loves the Church? How would our church family change if they were always on the lookout for ways in which to serve their wives?

3)   What would it look like if the wives at Everyday Church truly respected and submitted to their husbands as the Church submits to Jesus? How might their example proclaim the Gospel to a hurting world?
Father God, I thank you that you created us as men and women. Thank you for the different ways in which we can bring glory to your name – whether we are single or married. I particularly pray today for the husbands and wives across Everyday Church. Help them to glorify you by living out Genesis 2 and Ephesians 5 in their marriages. Amen.
If you have time, consider carrying on your conversation with God using one of our helpful Prayer Pathways.
Today’s Everyday Devotions have also inspired a devotional video that you can watch on our YouTube channel.