Saturday, December 24, 2011
Woman, the Glory of Man - Created for a Purpose
Created for a Purpose
I Corinthians 11:8-
Man does not originate from woman, but woman from man; for indeed man was not created for the woman's sake, but woman for the man's sake.
One of the great questions asked by mankind throughout the ages has been “Why am I here?” There is great value in knowing the answer to this question. For those who believe in the God of the Bible, it is exceedingly important to arrive at the knowledge of the truth. Success in the kingdom of God is defined as knowing the will of God, and doing it.
If we are to be successful as disciples of Christ, we must know the purposes of Yahweh. Christ ever lived to do the will of His Father, and so too must all who follow in His steps. It is a marvelous thing to discover the purposes of God for one’s life. We are thereby enabled to evaluate whether we are fulfilling God’s purpose.
In the passage above, the apostle Paul speaks of Yahweh’s purpose for the woman. Woman was created for the man’s sake. What does this mean? These words reveal that God saw some need present in man that called for a solution. The answer to man’s need was realized in the creation of the woman. We find the truth of man’s need proclaimed in the second chapter of Genesis.
Then Yahweh God said, "It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him." And out of the ground Yahweh God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the sky, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them; and whatever the man called a living creature, that was its name. And the man gave names to all the cattle, and to the birds of the sky, and to every beast of the field, but for Adam there was not found a helper suitable for him.
After God created all things, He evaluated what He had fashioned. In the first chapter of Genesis we find Yahweh rendering a judgment about those things created. Repeatedly we find the testimony that what God created He saw as good.
God saw that the light was good...
God called the dry land earth, and the gathering of the waters He called seas; and God saw that it was good.
The earth brought forth vegetation, plants yielding seed after their kind, and trees bearing fruit with seed in them, after their kind; and God saw that it was good.
Genesis 1:14, 18
Then God said, "Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night, and let them be for signs and for seasons and for days and years... , and God saw that it was good.
So God created great sea creatures and every living thing that moves, with which the waters abounded, according to their kind, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.
And God made the beast of the earth according to its kind, cattle according to its kind, and everything that creeps on the earth according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.
The last thing God created was man. In the first chapter of Genesis we find the creation of man described in compressed form. Mankind’s creation is expanded upon in chapter two. Thus we read in the first chapter that God created man “male and female.” Yet, this is not the full description of the event. In actuality, Yahweh created Adam on the sixth day of creation, and after some period of time had passed God created woman. It is interesting to note that in the compressed description of mankind’s creation in chapter one that God calls the creation of the man and woman together good.
Genesis 1:27, 31
So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them... Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good.
When God saw everything He had created he judged it to be “very good.” As we pass on to chapter two of Genesis we see that this judgment of God that all is very good was not declared prior to the creation of the woman. When God looked at the man He had formed He testified “it is NOT good for the man to be alone.” There was something lacking in the creation. Yahweh could not rest until He had made all things “very good.” Yahweh determined that man needed a helper, a companion that was “suitable to him.” This helper was not formed in the same way that Adam was formed. Adam was fashioned from the dust of the earth, but of the woman’s creation we read:
And Yahweh God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its place. Then the rib which Yahweh God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man. And Adam said: "This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man."
Every word of Scripture is important. Yahweh does not waste words. He has told us that which we need to know. He has given (disclosed to) us all things necessary for life and godliness (II Peter 1:3). In order for the woman to live a life pleasing to the Father, a life of godliness, there are certain things she needs to know. Among those things is the purpose of her creation. Woman was made for man. God judged man to have a deficiency while he remained alone. Man needed a helper. Yahweh therefore created woman to be man’s helper.
It is beneficial to look at the Hebrew word that is interpreted as “helper.” This word is translated from the Hebrew word ezer (pronounced ay-zer). We find this word used in numerous places throughout the Old Testament. Moses named one of his sons Eliezer.
And the name of the other was Eliezer (for he said, "The God of my father was my help (ezer), and delivered me from the sword of Pharaoh").
This Hebrew word occurs most often in connection with the idea of salvation, or deliverance from an enemy, or peril.
Yahweh hear you in the day of trouble; the name of the God of Jacob defend you; Send you help (ezer) from the sanctuary, and strengthen you out of Zion...
But I am poor and needy: make haste unto me, O God: You are my help (ezer) and my deliverer; O Yahweh, make no tarrying.
I do not doubt that the description of woman as the helper of man was intended in large part as a reference to her role in bringing the Savior into the world. It was from the womb of the woman that the Son of God was born. This act was accomplished quite apart from the effort of man. Christ was not born of the seed of Adam, nor of Adam’s descendants. The Holy Spirit overshadowed Mary, and the child was born from holy seed.
“Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel.”
Due to Adam’s transgression all men were made sinners. The seed of fallen man could never produce a Savior. God in His mercy and grace implanted in the woman a holy seed. Through that divine seed Yahweh provided a Savior for mankind. The woman became the vessel through which the Savior entered the world, bringing salvation to helpless man. Woman in this role has been an extraordinary helper to man. Through the role of childbearing, the woman man has brought deliverance to man.
The apostle Paul speaks of the interdependence that exists between the man and woman.
I Corinthians 11:11-12
However, in the Lord, neither is woman independent of man, nor is man independent of woman. For as the woman originates from the man, so also the man has his birth through the woman; and all things originate from God.
It is important to note the distinctions revealed in the statements above. Woman originates from the man. Man was created first. Woman was created after man, out of the man, and for man. Man, however, is not independent of the woman, for “the man has his birth through the woman.” There is a difference described here. Paul does not say that the man originates from the woman, rather man has his birth through the woman. Although man does not originate from the woman, he is dependent upon the woman for his continuance.
God’s word reveals a profound truth about man. In a very real sense, there have been only two men who have ever lived. The word Adam means “man.” The apostle Paul tells us there have been two Adams, two men.
I Corinthians 15:45-49
And so it is written, "The first man Adam became a living being." The last Adam became a life-giving spirit. However, the spiritual is not first, but the natural, and afterward the spiritual. The first man was of the earth, made of dust; the second Man is the Lord from heaven. As was the man of dust, so also are those who are made of dust; and as is the heavenly Man, so also are those who are heavenly. And as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly Man.
Every man born of the first Adam, the natural man, is merely a continuation of that first man. The life of the first man is contained in his seed. This seed is given to the woman that the life of man might continue. The first Adam was not born of woman. He was created from the dust of the earth. All other men have been a continuance of the first man God created. As the woman has received the seed of man, and given birth to Adam’s offspring, she has continued the life God created.
Apart from the woman, man would have perished when the first Adam died. Woman enables the life of Adam to continue by acting as fertile ground for his seed. As woman gives birth to Adam’s offspring she delivers man from death. This is cause for rejoicing.
A woman when she is in travail has sorrow, because her hour is come: but as soon as she is delivered of the child, she remembers no more the anguish, for joy that man is born into the world.
Most of our English translations today make alterations to the text to make it more readable, and easier to understand. Yet, there are many instances where in doing so the translators actually obscure the truth. You will find in your Bible that in the verse above it says that the woman has joy because “a man,” or “a child” is born into the world. In the original Greek, there is no definite article preceding the word “man.” What Christ actually said is that through the woman “man” is born into the world. The life of Adam is renewed. Adam is able to continue due to woman.
In these words of Christ it is revealed that this action of the woman is a source of great joy. In the context of Yahshua’s words we understand that this is both right and proper. Why is this so? It is because by continuing the life of man the woman is fulfilling her role as man’s helper, man’s ezer. The woman fulfills a costly role. She endures much pain to continue the life of man. As she fulfills this purpose for which she was created, the woman is a channel through which salvation comes to man.
There is a very interesting passage found relating to the woman in Paul’s first letter to Timothy. I believe a great mystery is contained in the words. We need to look deeper than the common and natural understanding that most perceive in these words.
I Timothy 2:14-15
And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.
As I have studied this Scripture in the Interlinear Bible which shows the original Greek alongside the English translation, it is apparent that certain words have been added, while others have been translated according to the understanding of those producing the English text. I will provide an alternate translation that I believe brings out some of the mystery of what Paul is conveying.
And Adam was not deceived, but the woman. In the transgression, salvation shall come through childbearing, if they continue in faith and love and holiness with soberness.
Seeing that Adam was not deceived, while Eve was, who had the greater transgression? The one who knows his master’s will and does not do it will receive many stripes, while the one who did not know the master’s will shall receive but few. In the transgression (of Adam) salvation shall come through childbearing. However, Adam cannot bear children. Adam is a seed producer. He is not a seed nurturer, nor can he give birth to that seed.
When we consider the consequences of Adam’s sin, we see how very necessary it was that he not dwell alone. Adam truly needed a helper, one to bring to man salvation in a time of need. The woman was created to be this helper. Not only has the woman continued the life of the first Adam to this day, but she has brought into the world the Savior of mankind that Adam and all his descendants might be delivered from sin and death.
Is it any wonder that Yahweh observed the man and said “it is NOT good for the man to be alone”? Man was helpless by himself. He would have died in his sins, and there would have been no salvation for him.
Let me be clear in stating that woman is not man’s salvation. She is one who helps man by being a channel through which God’s salvation might come. Neither the man, nor the woman, can save themselves, much less any other, from spiritual death. Christ alone is the source of salvation. Yet, God has given to the woman a very honored role. The word helper seems hardly sufficient to describe woman’s purpose.
Yahweh has put within the woman an intuitive sense of her purpose. The godly woman desires to fulfill the purpose for which Yahweh has created her. In the Old Testament we read numerous accounts of women who were barren. These women were not physically able to bring forth man into the world. These godly women wrestled greatly with God and man due to their barrenness. They saw their inability to bear sons as a source of great shame. Their lives seemed to them not worth living if they could not bring forth sons.
Now when Rachel saw that she bore Jacob no son, she became jealous of her sister; and she said to Jacob, "Give me sons, or else I die."
Among those women who experienced this dilemma, whose stories are recorded for us in Scripture are Sarah, the wife of Abraham; Rachel, the wife of Jacob; Tamar, who bore Zerah and Perez to Judah; and Hannah, the mother of Samuel. The shame and discomfiture of these women was so great that they went to extremities in their passion to bring a male child into the world.
Sarah, and Rachel (as well as Rachel’s sister Leah) all gave their handmaidens to their husbands that they might raise up sons by proxy through them. Rachel was advanced in years and died giving birth to her second son, Benjamin. Tamar disguised herself as a prostitute in order to receive the seed of Judah that she might bear sons. Hannah writhed in such agony of prayer before God, entreating Yahweh for a son, that the High Priest observing her thought she was drunk. Never, do we observe any censure from God relating to the efforts of these women who wanted so desperately to bring sons into the world.
Beyond this, we also have the story of Moses, whose mother risked her life to keep her son alive(Hebrews 11:23). We have an entire book of the Bible, Ruth, in which the story of Naomi’s bitter life is related. Naomi lost her husband and both sons. She changed her name to Mara, which means bitter, for her life appeared to her empty and desolate. Yet, God used Naomi’s daughter-in-law to bring forth a son for her through the action of a kinsman redeemer. Boaz married Ruth, and their firstborn became Naomi’s son that the lineage of her husband would not perish from the earth.
Seeing that God has provided such a wealth of testimonies in Scripture of women wrestling mightily with the shame of barrenness, the understanding woman should recognize that a very deep purpose is touched upon here. There is a reason these particular stories were included in the canon of Scripture. Yahweh has a profound message for all women who aspire to godliness. You were created to be a channel of life for man. Man needs a helper.
Satan has accomplished a terrible work in altering the attitude of women today regarding their creation purpose. Rather than seeking to be an abundant channel of life for man, woman has given herself to the destruction of the seed of man. Through abortion, contraceptives, and other devices, the woman has adopted an attitude of death. Satan comes only to kill, steal and destroy. What greater thing could he kill, steal, or destroy than the life of man? Many women have become Satan’s willing accomplice in this act. (I do not deny the role of man in these things as well. I am emphasizing the woman’s actions here, as this book is intended primarily for the woman.)
The very thought of destroying life is contrary to Yahweh’s purpose for the woman. Nevertheless, multitudes of Christian women take contraceptives, or practice other means of birth control, that they might prevent the natural development of the life that is found in the seed of man. No longer is there a passion among women to pay any cost to bring forth life into the world. With evil they little understand, millions of women employ birth control measures that they might participate in the pleasures of sexual intimacy while seeking to subvert Yahweh’s purpose for their creation.
The woman who aspires to godliness must carefully consider her ways. How can a woman be esteemed righteous and holy by God when she adopts the diabolical practices of Babylon? It is the corrupted wisdom of Satan that leads a woman to question, “Why should I make my life a drudgery by giving myself to raising children, or staying home, when I can have a career, and pursue my own fulfillment and pleasure?”
This wisdom does not descend from above, but is earthly, sensual, demonic.
The kingdom of God operates on very different principles from the kingdom of this world. The greatest in the kingdom of God is the servant of all. In Yahweh’s sight a woman is not throwing her life away by choosing to stay home, to bear children and teach them righteousness and honor. It is the woman who spends her life in service to her husband, to her children, and to others, that is praised by God. The humble will receive promotion, while those who have chosen the path of selfishness and pride will be debased. The first shall be last, and the last shall be first.
The apostles established customs and traditions among the churches. When considering which widowed women to honor by meeting their regular support, the following criteria were established.
I Timothy 5:9-10
A widow is to be put on the list only if she is not less than sixty years old, having been the wife of a man, having a reputation for good works; and if she has brought up children, if she has shown hospitality to strangers, if she has washed the saints' feet, if she has assisted those in distress, and if she has devoted herself to every good work.
Regarding younger widows the apostle’s teaching was equally clear.
I Timothy 5:14
Therefore, I want younger widows to get married, bear children, keep house, and give the enemy no occasion for reproach...
The apostle Paul was not being chauvinistic. He discerned the purpose for which God had created the woman. He knew that which would result in the greatest honor and praise before Yahweh. He sought always to lead the saints in the path of life. Woman was created to be man’s helper. To pour out one’s life for the benefit of others is the pattern observed in Christ’s life. There is no higher calling.
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