Desirable Differences

by | Oct 3, 2011 | Marriage | 2 comments

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

The thought that God would call Eve Adam’s helper makes some bristle. Visions of poor Cinderella scrubbing floors with no life of her own pop into mind. If that is the biblical view of marriage, what woman would want that?

Some seem to believe that because Eve was deceived by the serpent that this is indeed woman’s predicament. She’ll want a man, but her man will callously dominate her. Sadly, in many parts of the world and in homes where sin reins, you find women mistreated that way. But that is not God’s will.

The word “helper” comes from the Hebrew word ezer and is used 21 times in the Old Testament. Sometimes, including the verse above, it refers to peer helping peer. Most of the time it refers to God helping His people. Since God is our help it cannot be a demeaning term or role. See Psalms 33:20, 70:5, 115:9.

God said it was not good for man to be alone so He created the perfect partner for him. Adam and Eve alike shared God’s image and the ability to rule over the earth. They were both blessed and equally capable of relating to God. Eve was not inferior to Adam, but she was different from him.

God designed the couple to glue together as one person. Velcro comes to mind. Velcro is made of two strips of different textures. When you put the different strips together they adhere firmly. Velcro holds kids’ shoes closed and keeps hanging fabric in place.

Velcro doesn’t work if you put identical sides together. It is the difference in the textures that makes it work.

Eve was not another Adam. She was his compliment not his duplicate, his completer not his competitor. I really don’t want my spouse to think and be just like me. Our male and female differences strengthen our partnership.

Note that when God made Adam a suitable partner He did not give Adam a mother. Men say it is hard to feel romantic towards someone who mothers (corrects, trains or nags) them. Women also tire of husbands who look to them as mothers.

Eve was his partner, not his child. Husbands want a peer—not someone continually needy. A husband doesn’t want the Cinderella role any more than the wife. He needs a companion to lighten the load of life—not a helpless burden to carry.

A wife doesn’t want to be treated as a child either. She deserves “honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life” (1 Peter 3:7).

Cinderella married her prince and lived happily ever after. She was content to be a princess, as her husband was to be her prince. Adam and Eve’s happiness was blighted by sin. Sin brings discontentment, competition and blame. A strong marriage consists of individuals who value their roles and respect one another.


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All scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc.™   Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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  1. Faye

    Thank you for these very wise words and great reminder to all of us. I hope you do not mind, but I posted a link here from my facebook because I thought others might glean encouragement and wisdom from this as well.

    • debwilson

      Thank you for passing it on. God’s Word offers clarity and refreshment in a world of muddied messages.

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