Woman: Companion For Man
The first fact in Scripture about the woman is that she was created for the man, to be a "help meet (or appropriate) for him." She is named "woman" because she was "taken out of man. All else - marriage. procreation, establishing and maintaining a home, providing for the family, personal companionship - follows from this fundamental reason for woman's creation out of man and for man.
No help meet for Adam was found among all the beasts. This is crucially important especially n the creation/evolution issue. This verse of Scripture (Genesis 2:21) confirms that evolutionism and biblical thought are incompatible, for it reiterates the separation between all created kinds according to Genesis 1, and especially between mankind and all other created kinds. A "help meet for Adam" could only be found by God's creation of woman out of man. This creation of woman establishes woman's full likeness to and fitness for man, and also the existence of one mankind only with only one ancestral head.
Both man and woman are fully human and the only creatures made in God's own image and likeness. Woman is in no way less human than man, the reason for and result of her direct and supernatural creation by God Himself. The biblical account of the creation of both man and woman gives us a precise epistemological account for man's and woman's equality, as evolutionists can not. Our evolutionist friends cannot even be sure that all mankind is descended from only one first pair. in fact, on evolutionist premises the simultaneous appearance of one first "fully human" male and one first "fully human" female in The same place, as required for their mating and fully human progeny, would be, pardon the word, a miracle, though evolutionists might call it chance, a mutational mega-leap (or rather, two mega-leaps) of "punctuated equilibrium" or manifestation of the New Age cosmic divine life force. On the other hand, if evolutionists deny that all mankind descends from one first original pair, the door is opened to the racism which in fact pervaded Darwinian evolutionism for many decades.
In addition To their fundamental equality in their full humanness, man and woman are equal in that both are blessed by our Lord, and that both are charged to be fruitful, multiply, replenish and subdue the earth, and to have dominion over the rest of creation under God. This dominion mandate is addressed to the woman as well as the man, because as man's specially created appropriate helper she must of necessity participate in its exercise. One example of woman thus laboring in dominion alongside man is the history of North America. In the United States and Canada we are often reminded in historical records, stories, pictures, diaries, genealogies and also in personal reminiscences of "old-timers" of the sturdy, hardworking, brave, persevering pioneer women who accompanied their husbands and families when the great North American frontier was being opened up. These women were fulfilling their biblical creation task as helpers meet for their men. The prevalence of the biblical Christian faith among them is well documented.
Women may fulfill their duties assigned to them by God at creation apart from marriage and if married outside the home. It is the man who must take the initiative to "leave his father and mother and to cleave to his wife" as the founder and head of the name. But this fact does not release the unmarried woman from her task under God to be a help meet for man, and from her responsibility to exercise dominion over the rest of creation together with man. The difference between godly women and women ignorant of or rebellious against the biblical creation origin and purpose of woman's existence is one of attitude: the godly woman acts To serve God and man, while the ignorant or rebellious woman acts primarily to "assert" or "fulfill" herself.
The married woman may work outside the home with her husband's consent if, for example, he cannot provide for his family through no fault of his own. Another instance is the situation where homemaking takes relatively little time and where the children are grown and have left the home. Yet another instance is the newly married, as yet childless couple where both spouses work to lay aside for their future home and children. It is not right under the biblical creation view, however, to forego having children for the sake of greater wealth and comfort. Man and woman are to be fruitful, multiply, and replenish the earth, God's first command to them after creation (Genesis 1 28) which has never been repealed. Children "are a heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is His reward," and they area blessing from God (Psalm 127:3-4).
These principles are often lost sight of in our time where work and career opportunities for women are continuously expanding. Their usual appeal is to women's ambition and pride, or more subtly, to their desire to develop and use their talents in the service of "the community" in the abstract while omitting the crucial importance of their companionship to men in the personal sense. From this subtle diminution of the biblical view of woman it is not too far to full-fledged "women's liberation" and its rejection of companionship with men altogether. There are now many "liberated" women who see men only as business competitors, bed partners, and even as mere studs for children the women plan deliberately to raise without husbands.
The woman who is a true companion and help meet for her husband in the biblical sense is not a clinging vine whom her husband is expected to treat like a pretty, vapid, spoiled child. She is not primarily a sex object or a housekeeper, though she does not withhold herself from her spouse and does keep a good home She takes genuine interest in him, his work, his successes and disappointments, his dreams and fears, his joys and sorrows. All this is part of the biblical sense of husband's and wife's becoming "one flesh". She counsels with her husband with all the ability and experience at her command, and with utmost, loving sensitivity towards his desires, intentions and needs so she will neither stifle his enthusiasm nor encourage him in doubtful undertakings and directions. When he does not follow her well-considered advice, she accepts his decision with good will. If it turns out that she was right and he wrong, she does not gloat. In other words, she pulls her own weight and yet shares his burdens in true obedience to Galatians 6:2- 5. When she thus lives out her life as her husband's true helper, seemingly receiving no glory or favor of her own, she will be abundantly blessed, and she will never be alone. Her family will praise and bless her as with the godly woman of Proverbs 31, whose price is above rubes. Nor will she lose her own creativity but it will rather abundantly bloom and bear fruit. This is true not only of the married woman and mother, but also of the godly woman who is neither, This writer was won to Christ in part by the beautiful witness of one such dear older, single woman.
It is self-evident that men and women are not equal in physical and emotional respects, as all but the wilfully blind must admit. There are more subtle differences between them, such as men's future-directedness and women's present- directedness, men's preference for new acquisition and women's primary concern with the preservation of already acquired property. Men think in terms of overall organization or general principles, while women pay more attention to organizational details and practical application of principles. All this shows that there is not equality, but rather a beautiful design of mutual complementarity between men and women, which witnesses to the truth of the Genesis account of their creation and purpose.
The modern women's Iiberation movement is obviously incompatible with the Biblical creation view of woman as man's companion. Often men themselves have contributed to the women's liberation movement, so hostile to men themselves, because they have either acted as tyrants in the home, or else allowed women to usurp the man's biblical role of headship. However, with oil due admission of men's part in the matter, women's liberation would overcome evil with evil. It would replace God's creation mandate for women by a godless, self-glorifying pseudo-identity for women. True companionship between men and women would be eliminated and replaced by an ugly legalism. Leading feminists fully understand and agree with their movement's total hostility towards the biblical creation view of woman. In fact, to overthrow this biblical view is feminism's real goal. Yet feminism still defines itself by defining a woman's role in relation to man (his "equal"). However, with God out of the picture, not love and companionship but evolution's constant, lawless and pitiless struggle becomes the "norm". It is a way which leads not to love, happiness and personal fulfillment but only to conflict, hostility, loneliness, misery (who is left to befriend aging feminists?) and death. As Christ said. "What will it profit a man (or woman) if he (or she) gains the whole world, and loses his (or her) own soul?" (Mark 8:36). The True, biblical norm for woman is to be man's companion. In defending the biblical creation view of woman by word, and more importantly, by living it, we defend the welfare of mankind, both women and men. Our welfare depends not upon "equality" but godly love.
The character of the godly man, so crucial to the woman's exercise of her biblical companionship mandate, has been discussed in this writer's article "In Praise of Men" CSSH Quarterly. Vol. II, No.3 (Spring l980). pp.5-9.