Last week, while beginning yet another journey through the Scripture, as a recent bride, I found myself reading the account of Adam and Eve’s nuptials with fresh eyes.
I’ve read it perhaps hundreds of times before—God fashions a woman from and for the man, then personally officiates at their wedding, thus instituting the first marriage. The groom wholeheartedly, enthusiastically receives this bride and their union as a wondrous gift from their Maker. The creation narrative ends with a commentary on marriage as God ordained it to be.
Take a moment to read it again—as if for the first time, as if newly in love, with wonderment.
Then the LORD God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.” …
So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and while he slept took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh. And the rib that the LORD God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man.
Then the man said, “This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.”
Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed. (Genesis 2:18–25)
This is the capstone of creation. Anticipation fulfilled (“at last”), companionship, oneness, recognition of value, celebration of difference, cherishing, honor, holding fast, intimacy, unbridled passion. Nakedness, vulnerability, transparency. And complete, utter freedom from shame.
It is all stunningly good, beautiful, pure and right. And they all lived happily ever after. The End.
Oh that it were so.
Next verse: Now the serpent … (Genesis 3:1).
That phrase jolted me in my reading. So abrupt. So disruptive, falling as it does in the midst of such ecstasy. I ended up parked in this passage for the next several hours, meditating on the progression, contemplating its implications for my own life and marriage.
God had acted magnificently and magnanimously on the stage of history. The God who eternally existed in relationship with the Son and the Spirit had lovingly fashioned one indissoluble union of two distinct, complementary beings. A union designed in his infinite wisdom to reveal the oneness of the Godhead. A union intended in time to tell the redemptive story, even before there was any need for redemption.