“To the woman He said: ‘I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception; in pain you shall bring forth children; your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you’” (Genesis 3:16). The woman still has no name when the curse is laid out by God. She would be named later by Adam in Genesis 3:20 because she is the mother of all living.
The sentence upon the woman deals with the two aspects of the married woman’s life as wife and mother. The woman’s biological system regarding ovulation, sex and conception would be cursed with sorrow and pain. No longer would childbearing be painless and full of joy, having many children to multiply the earth, and living forever as God intended in His perfect creation. Imagine conceiving a child and the pregnancy produces a miscarriage or stillbirth. Imagine the sorrow Eve must have felt when the first murder (Genesis 4:8) happens between her two sons, Cain killing Abel. That is a curse!
Furthermore as a wife, the woman was created as man’s equal. “And the Lord God said, ‘It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him’” (Genesis 2:18). She was made to provide help, relief and aid to Adam. He was to tend and keep the garden, and she would be his relief, capable of performing the same task.
“Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh” (Genesis 2:24). God ordained this first marriage between one man and one woman. As a wife, God in Genesis 3:16 also stated, “Your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you.” Because of Eve’s disobedience to God and subsequent manipulation of her husband, her “desire” will now be for her husband’s needs as he leads his family spiritually.
Adam is now charged to be the head of the family. Of course, if the husband fails to lead his family in spiritual matters and love his wife as Christ loved the church (Ephesians 5:25), it leads to discourse and more sorrow for the woman. “And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4).
God encourages equality in marriage when it comes to being one flesh. “The wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does. And likewise the husband does not have authority over his own body, but the wife does” (1 Corinthians 7:4). Spiritually, “wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord” (Ephesians 5:22). So husband, if God is not first in your life, all bets are off when it comes to your wife submitting to your ungodly leadership. This is why God, the ultimate marriage counselor, implores us in 2 Corinthians 6:14: “Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers.” Unequally yoked literally means to have fellowship with one who is not an equal. Equality in marriage starts with both the husband and wife believing in Jesus Christ.
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NOTE: The preceding excerpt was taken from the book, “God on Climate Change: Worshipping creation instead of the Creator” by Jim Wear (the author of this blog)… available in paperback at Amazon.