Bible Lessons, Old Testament, Uncategorized

One Helpful Word about Eve

If you could describe yourself with just one word, what would it be?

just one Word-jamielanedesigns

God uses just one word to describe the first woman in Genesis 2, but what He has to say about Adam before Eve was created gives insight into the one word He chooses.

Only once in the Creation story does God declare that “it is NOT GOOD.” After 6 consecutive days of creating and declaring, “it was good,” God forms the first man with His own hands and then declares, “it is not good for the man to be alone.”

Before God created the first woman, He was pleased with how His creation turned out. He formed the earth and sky, and then He filled them up. Everything was made to fulfill a purpose, and that was good.

So it is a stark contrast for God to declare that something is “NOT GOOD.”

Genesis 2:18 (NIV)
The Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.”

Adam needed a “helper.” Some Bible translations say, “helpmeet,” but what does that word even mean?

You’re already learning to ask two important questions in Bible study:
What do I learn about God?
What do I learn about myself & my relationship with God?

Another valuable question in Bible study is:
What does this word mean? What did it mean in the original text?

The Old Testament text was written in Hebrew, so it can be helpful to use a resource like www.blueletterbible.org where you can search the meaning of a specific word.

Helper = EZER

The Hebrew word for “helper” here is ezer (ay’-zer), and it’s worth looking into how it’s used in the Bible:

Ezer describes Eve’s role as helper in Genesis 2.

Ezer also describes God’s role as Israel’s strong helper in times of trouble. It’s used 16 times in the Old Testament; here’s one example: Deuteronomy 33:29.

Ezer is also used as a powerful Hebrew military word meaning warrior.

It makes sense that God would use military language to describe Eve’s role and to mobilize her into action. God created Eve with a mission.

Adam was alone in the world. He was the only one on earth who walked with God. He faced enormous potential for overload, burnout, discouragement, and unbelief as the enemy slithered into the garden to attack. Adam couldn’t fight these battles alone. God didn’t want him to fight these battles alone. So God created an ezer to stand by her man as a strong ally in the life of faith and the battle for God’s Kingdom.

Recognizing that Adam needed a “helper” doesn’t demean him as weak. It simply means that he was alone and in need of a strong teammate. Adam would need the gifts Eve would bring, and Eve would need Adam’s gifts to fulfill their calling together to bear God’s image.

Labeling Eve as a “helper” doesn’t demean her as weak. She was created second, so you might view her as being in second place, created to live in Adam’s shadow. But that wasn’t God’s design at all.

God knew what He was doing when He created male and female; He needed a good team for a big job. God intended for men and women to work together. Not to try to change each other, demand things from each other or to battle each other!

God addressed both Adam & Eve when He commanded them to rule over the animals and subdue the earth. He blessed both Adam & Eve with adventure and authority and relationship. These were meant to be shared experiences rather than what is often misunderstood as the stereotypical man who adventures all day hunting for food, and the woman who stays quietly at home helping around the house.

“All women were created to be ezers – not only in marriage but in every relationship, every season and every walk of life. Strong warriors who stand alongside their brothers in the battle for God’s Kingdom. God’s plan to reveal His image through humanity involved both male and female. Nowhere does God’s image shine more brightly than when men and women join in serving Him together.” – Carolyn Custis James, Lost Women of the Bible

Now that you know what it means when God calls the first woman a “helper,” ask yourself the Second Question for Bible study:

What do I learn about myself & my relationship with God?

If you could describe yourself with just one word, would you use one of these?

  • Strong Helper
  • God’s Warrior
  • On a Mission
  • Your Husband’s Ally

As Beth Moore says,

“You and I are supposed to be fierce warriors of the faith. Let’s get over being so fragile.”      

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