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Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary


A Paper Submitted to Fulfill the Partial Requirements of OBST 605 Genesis Dr.

By 2LT Melissa L. Adams (GA ARNG) Barnesville, GA November 30, 2011

Genesis 2:21-24 Whatever souls are made us, his and mine are the same. -Emily Bronte, Wuthering Heights Before we jump into this passage, I want to ask everyone a series of questions: What is marriage? To be more specific, What do you think marriage is all about? Is it an equal partnership between a man and a woman? Or is it just a legal formality on a piece of paper that says, We are a couple? The reason why I am asking you all this is because meaning behind the institution of marriage has decreased so much over the past three thousand years that we may has well put it on the endangered species list. Marriage has always been a sacred union instituted by God in the beginning (Genesis 2:21-24) but in reality, in the now, people give it no more respect than we do any other legal document. It has lost its meaning! You may be asking yourselves right now, What is she talking about? I do not think of marriage that way! Well, in the next five minutes, I am going to give you some examples of what I mean by my previous statement, and then we will explore the scripture in Genesis to learn how this happened and what we need to do about it. Same-Sex Marriages I remember back in 2006 when I was voting for the new governor of GA. There was also a vote on the institution of marriage. It was a huge leap for our state in a very political way but also one theologically. It was a monumental insult to all married couples in America and to the institution of marriage itself but most importantly, it was a slap in the face to God himself. They wanted us to vote on same-sex marriages. My reaction to this abomination was an angry one. Furthermore, I was disgusted by the very thought of it happening in my state. This should not have come as such a surprise when I saw it on my ballot but it was. It really was. It made me so angry. However, it also made me deeply said. It made me ache with grief on behalf of my

Creator. I wondered, How could they do this to God? The very Father, whose commandments this country was founded on? What would George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, or Benjamin Franklin think of this new law they are proposing? I am sure they would be has mad as I am right now. I am sure they would not stand for such a thing to happen. Our beloved president, who had been in office for eight long years and had guided us through a long and taxing war based on freedom, justice, and protection of its people, had let such a law be put on my countrys ballot? It was just unthinkable! Unfortunately, it was there in black and white and this law had a 50 percent chance of becoming a law in the Peach state. Lastly, after getting over the shock of this development, I thought to myself, What do these people really think of the institution of marriage? The growing acceptance of same-sex couples and same sex marriages is enemy number one to the sacredness of marriage. Adam and Steve As I am writing this, I am reminded of a sermon I had heard the president of our college, Dr. David Hopkins (former president of Emmanuel College, Franklin Springs Georgia), gave when I was a freshman. He was preaching on this very issue, except that he was focusing on the concept of homosexuality, not that of their marriage, even though I am sure he mentioned it. From this sermon, there is one particular statement that sticks out in my mind. He said as clear as day, God created Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve! Now, we are talking about the first couple ever who were created and married by God himself. Now my main argument in response to the concept of the gay persuasion is: If God had wanted his people to be homosexual, then he would have created him a helpmate that was male not female. However, this is how they see themselves. A lot of them have the audacity to proclaim that God made them this way and that they were born like that. Also, this is how they are now viewing marriage. Furthermore, this

belief is running through our world like the Black plague ran through Europe. It is destroying and distorting the true meaning of marriage. An institution that God ordained himself! Again, humanity has forgotten what God and the founders of this country have tried so hard to preserve. The biggest let down of all, is we are just letting them do it. We are letting them destroy the goodness that is marriage between a man and a women who love each other and proclaim it before God and man alike. Should we not stand up and fight for what is right? Divorce and No Equality Not only does society insist that marriage should not defined has between a man and a women but it openly insists that if you are not happy in your marriage, no matter what the reason, then you are free to get out of it as long as you follow the legal process for a divorce. Lastly, marriage is no longer held to a standard of equality between two spouses. Either the man rules the castle or the woman does. Couples today, except a vast majority of the Christian population, have no clear standard of what marriage looks like so there is always a battle for supremacy between dominant personalities. Having no clear standard is the number one reason for divorce. People have no idea how to be married or what marriage is or looks like. Again, the meaning of marriage is distorted in todays society. The future looks bleak for marriage brothers and sisters. The Big question is: What are we, as Christians going to do about it? The Fall Not only has the meaning of marriage been distorted but the act itself. How did this happen? When did the sacredness of marriage begin to crumble? What caused it? I will remind you of this event. It is found in the book of Genesis, chapter three verses six through nine. When Adam and Eve ate from the forbidden tree, they caused the original meaning of marriage to begin deteriorating. Slowly since then, over the past three-thousand years, its original meaning

has become so distorted in society has a whole that is barely recognizable. Only in a narrow percentage of Christians can we find couples who seem to have found and held onto this true meaning created by their one and true God. We may model and preach the original meaning of marriage for each other but do we do it for those who are not Christians? Furthermore, if we are going to seek to write this wrong, can we truly explain its true and sacred meaning to them? Do we know what equality in marriage is and looks like? Many of us do not. To solve this problem, let us discover its meaning from the very source, the words of God. Let us examine Genesis, chapter two verses 21-24.: 21So the LORD God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the mans ribs[a] and then closed up the place with flesh. 22Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib[b] he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man. 23The man said, This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called woman, for she was taken out of man. 24That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh. This verse is so essential to the institution of marriage that it is often used in the marriage ceremony. From just reading this passage, I can determine four things about marriage. Marriage is (1) between a man and a woman, (2) permanent not temporary, (3) an equal partnership, and (4) the wife is more important than the mans family. Now let us look at the passage in more depth and see what the experts say about this passage. Original Meaning John H. Walton, author of The NIV Application Commentary on the Book of Genesis, points out that no other suitable companion could be found among the animals and that God had to create one from Adam himself.1 He also brings up the question, If Eve was a suitable helper for man then is the man a suitable helper for the woman?2 This question seems to show that

John H. Walton, Genesis, The NIV Application Commentary (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan, 2001), 175.

Walton is saying that there is equality in marriage. As you read on, Walton insists that the word helper is in no way referring to any type of subservient status that would infer that a man is the boss of the woman.3 Furthermore, Walton shows us that since Eve was made from Adam then they are meant to be together, as one entity. To me, this also implies equality. Lastly, Walton writes that Adam and Eve were partners not just together as a couple. Also, he points out that Eve was Adams counter-partner, which supports the common saying, You are my better half. All of this evidence taken from Genesis 2:21-24 seems to point to equality in marriage. Conclusion The Fall of Adam and Eve caused the slow and steady distortion to the true and sacred meaning of marriage. The marriages of today are not what God clearly intended them to be. We have to insist that gay marriage is wrong. Furthermore, to prevent the extinction of this sacred institution, we need to know what God intended and model it for those around us. Being an appropriate model speaks for itself. People will notice what is different about your marriage and they will ask questions. Will you be able to give them the correct answers? The answer is yes. Here is what you now should know. (1) Marriage is only intended for a man and a woman. (2) Marriage is a lasting commitment. Divorce is only acceptable in certain instances. (3) Marriage is a partnership and the man does not Lord over the wife. (4) A good match is one where the two people complement each other. Or that they complete one another (the other half principle). Finally, when a man marries a woman, the man leaves his family to make a new one with his wife. I hope that I have given all of you some valuable insights into what God originally intended marriage to look like. I also hope that it in some way this study of Genesis 2:21-24 strengthens your bond with your own spouse.

Ibid. Ibid., 176.

References Walton, John H. Genesis, The NIV Application Commentary. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan, 2001.