He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.” 11 And he said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from? ” Genesis 3:10-11
Stacks Image 5
Genesis was written to a people who were slaves in Egypt and the beginning of the story is suppose to explain to this group of people how they got to where they were. How did this thing start and why is it the way it is now.

Genesis 1 shows the reader who God is and who we are in Him. We are created in His image and our identity is who we are and not what we can do. Our life, or day, our being, starts in rest in Him and not our jobs and daily labors. Chapter 2 shows the reader a greater detail of God's plan for the lives of humankind (ha'adam) created in His image and how He divided them so that man (ish) and woman (issa) together make us ha'adam created in God image. (Read the first four lessons in this study for a clearer understanding). In Genesis 3, God's going to show His readers why we are where we are today.

In Genesis 3, we see the fall of man. There's lots of different theories around the snake, the tree(s), the fruit, and what the temptation was. We're not going to look at these, we're going to look at the distortion of God's plan and how that affects our lives and marriages today; and it will better understand many things we see in Scripture and throughout history. In doing this, we're going to focus on the curses.

To the woman he said,
“I will make your pains in childbearing very severe;
with painful labor you will give birth to children.
Your desire will be for your husband,
and he will rule over you." Genesis 3:16

After the curse of the serpent, we see the curse of woman. God's perfect plan is for ha'adam to be fruitful and multiply (Genesis 1:28). The "fruitful" and "multiply" are two different commands and we're going to focus on "multiply" at this moment. Adam and Eve were to have children and God established the child bearing on the woman. Based on the curse, this was a non-painful multiplication. The distortion of this multiplication is now it will be in pain, severe pain, with labor. They will still multiply but it will not be a physically pleasant experience.

In the study of Helpmate we see the original Hebrew word means help with resistance. The help that woman would give is that of positive help. Like brakes on a car are positive resistance, being it keeps the speed of the vehicle in check and allows it to stop when needed, woman was supposed to be a positive resistance to man. After the fall, God says, "your desire will be fore your husband".

In our definition of desire we would think that this is not a curse but a good thing. Isn't it good for a woman to desire her husband? The Hebrew word for "desire" here is ṯešûqâ and we see it used again in Genesis 4 when God is talking to a bitter Cain.

"And if you do not do well, sin lies at the door. And its desire is for you,…" Genesis 4:7

Notice the similar language. The fact is, "desire" in this passage is the exact same Hebrew word as desire in the curse, ṯešûqâ, and the language itself tells us what is happening in chapter 3. As sin desires to control Cain (see also
Sin Within Us) woman's desire will be to control her husband, she will desire his position. Unlike the positive resistance of brakes on a car, she will not be like those brakes that are frozen, locked up, not allowing the car to move.

God then lays down the next curse upon woman, your husband "will rule over you".

But I want you to understand that the head of every man is Christ, the head of a wife is her husband, and the head of Christ is God. 1 Corinthians 11:3

The sound of headship, in today's culture, brings negative connotations. The fact is, based on this passage, to come against headship is to come against the relationship of God and Messiah.

Headship is not control nor a slave like submission to the head. Remember that woman was created as a
help by resistance. The very term "help" along does not indicate a person who is to listen to every single command of another. There must be tension, there must be resistance for help to be established.

Headship is a position that leads, it's not a ruler. Yet, in the curse we see that the man will now rule. It's this rulership, the distortion of God's intent, that people think of when it comes to headship but we must understand the differences in the two.

Just in the curse on the woman alone we see major explanations of what we see in the world. Anyone who has looked through Scripture sees how men treated women in a way that was lower than human. This is the curse of "he will rule over you".

In many areas of the world, and especially in American culture, we see the curse of woman wanting mans position. It's often joked about but, in full honesty, it's a curse and no joking manner. We say how the wife "wears the pants" or "tells the husband which pair to wear". We see men kowtowing to their aggressive and controlling wives making marriage much more difficult. We see woman trying to control the churches; which is also a jezebel spirit.

When God separated woman from man, He took aspects and characteristics from man to make woman. Before the separation, everything was within ha'adam but after the separation we have the differences in our behaviors, the hormones our bodies release, the roles (birth, etc). Man was given physical strength and woman mental strength. This was a good thing but now they are distorted. Man will rule over women with their physical strength but women will desire mans position. Women don't use physical strength, they use their mental strength.

As a side note, it's this mental strength in women that cause them to not be able to get along will and work together. God gave them a great gift but the curse has them trying to control each other as well as men. Watch any show where women are teamed up on a project and you'll see chaos as they fight with each other over power. If they could only learn how to harness this gift of God and use it for His good they would excel so much more.

Then to Adam He said, "Because you have heeded the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree of which I commanded you, saying, 'You shall not eat of it':
"Cursed is the ground for your sake;
In toil you shall eat of it
All the days of your life.
18 Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you,
And you shall eat the herb of the field.
19 In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread
Till you return to the ground,
For out of it you were taken;
For dust you are,
And to dust you shall return."
20 And Adam called his wife's name Eve, because she was the mother of all living. Genesis 3:17-20

After the curse of the woman God moves onto the curse to man and the first thing He confronts man over is "because you have heeded the voice of your wife". The problem is not that man was not supposed to listen to his wife, remember
HELP through resistance, the problem is that man let her take lead. He let her do the communicating without intervention into the matter. He let her take the lead of the relationship. He let her sin without stopping it. He followed her into that sin. Everything about what happened here is the opposite of what God established and that is his first charge from God - You let your wife take the lead and you followed her instead of leading as I designed.

Man was supposed to tend to the garden but since he let his wife take the lead and followed her in eating the fruit, the garden work will no longer be pleasurable. The ground is cursed and now man will toil to gain food, they'll work and rework in order to be able to eat. Man will sweat, work, be pricked and scratched by thorns and thistles trying to choke out the food. Man will eat the "herb of the field", the food will no longer be the same, it will be bitter (as compared to before the fall). And he will work until the day he dies.

We see something else happen here. As talked in depth about in
Naming Them, man no longer seen his wife by who she was. He now saw her by what she could do. While having our work recognized is nice, we need to be able to see each other by who we are. The reason why men view women as sex objects and merely a place to stick their "wiener", and not for who they are, is because of the fall.

In marriage we need to understand that it's more than about what each one can do. While jobs are important and sex is given by God, marriage is more than about what a man can provide and more than about sex. If a marriage is based upon these things it will eventually fall as men will become old and weak and woman will lose their youth. The ultimate purpose of marriage is showing the image of God to the world around us.