Genesis: Then Lord God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man (Genesis 2: 21 – 23)

Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man. The man said, ‘This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, for she was taken out of man. (Gen 2:21-23)

The origin of both man and woman as the Scripture tells. This will occupy our space over the next few weeks. The ‘Who’, ‘How’ and ‘Why’ as the Bible describes. Well, the ‘Who’ is easy; God is clearly seen as creator and intentional in every step. The ‘How’ is also told, though the process is intriguing; but God is always God and His ways are always His ways and His intention (His word) is to speak and communicate that we would have understanding. The ‘Why’; God is shown to be purposeful so the ‘Why’ unfolds along the way. Let’s focus on the ‘How’ for now and the ‘Who’ becomes evident.

The way the narrative runs may give the appearance of God inventing as He goes, but this is for our benefit. Processes make important points.

As God created, he saw and said, ‘It was good’. But as for man, and man has prime focus within the creation story, God said, ‘it is NOT GOOD for man to be alone..’ (Gen 2:18)

The Scripture is showing the significance of Mankind being both man and woman together. This in turn reveals the creation purpose and intention of marriage and family and also community as Mankind lives together. The things perhaps we take as the given, the norm, by going back to creation principals and to see the origins and profoundness of being man and woman, we may also see how a world outside of God’s purposes creates its own blueprint. Man and woman are both equal and of the same essence (‘Bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh’) and yet different to bring complementary purpose and meaning both in and out of marriage but marriage is the high point- ‘They become one flesh’. This in turn relates to being made, “In the image and likeness of God” (Gen 2:24) and God as ‘Trinity’.

** Listen to Leon Patillo’s – Flesh of My Flesh **

The creation of all the animals: God tasks Adam with power and responsibility to begin rule by naming them and also to self-discover, out of the vast array and marvellous connection, “No suitable helper (partner) was found.” Can we imagine a world without animals? Perhaps attacking magpies at present! We may also acknowledge such animals that become ‘faithful’ companions and helps (dogs for the sight impaired etc). We cherish their company and grieve their loss. But such a saying of a dog being “Man’s best friend” has to be understood in context for an animal in accordance to creation, for such can never provide the same companionship as another person.

Coming back to the ‘How’ God created Adam and Eve. Both were the first and both unique once-off in process. Adam, like the animals (2:19) were formed out of the ground- that is material God had previously made- “Then the Lord God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.” (2:7)

The creation of Eve, we have already noted. A different process from the man. Unique and again, once-off. In all of this, the difference between man and woman is shown to be still of the same essence but a clear distinction is also being made between creation and purpose of the animal and plant world and that of Mankind. Now, in turn, with Mankind and animals uniquely described in creation at the hand of God as creator the process of ongoing generations of both is given over in the command, Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. (1:28). NB: the same command was given to Noah and his families after the flood. (Gen 9:7)

So for each and every one of us born is by the providence of God, intentionally and unintentionally in our ‘hands’, fulfilling the purpose of God to continue to populate planet Earth. This is somewhat a simplification for there is much more purpose and intention within God’s plan. We may also note the apostle Paul goes back to creation principals to describe both Man and Woman so we have not covered other aspects on male and female (eg 1 Cor 11:2-16) and this also must be carefully understood.

The God of creation created uniquely. This same God is the same creator who brings and provides life to everyone born. What joy, privileges, responsibility, is given and purposed into our hands. How much of a given and a norm has this become? How much has been lost because of the Fall? What may we see afresh from the origins as the Bible describes and reveals perspective from God’s own mind?

Psalm 139 remains special for many. God who is all-powerful (Omnipotent); all-knowing (Omniscient); all present (Omnipresent) is found expressed in this Psalm. Indeed God, in his highpoint of creation remains God involved in and with all Mankind. (He still calls for the Prodigal to return ‘Home’.

 “You have searched me, Lord, and you know me….Before a word is on my tongue you, Lord, know it completely…For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb….Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be….Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thought…Lead me in the way everlasting.”

As much as Adam and Eve, as man and woman, male and female, were equal, they were different as being complementary and God’s perfection that what was not good would prove to be GOOD. In marriage, they become two halves of one and so become one.  Each person is unique, an individual, a person created by God for purposes. You are you- just like everyone else! How might this lead you into prayer, praise and worship of God the creator?

HYMN: I Know Whom I Have Believed by Fountainview Academy

I know not why God’s wondrous grace to me he hath made known,

Nor why, unworthy, Christ in love redeemed me for his own.

But I know who I have believed and am persuaded that he is able

To keep that which I’ve committed unto him against that day.