Note: Devotion taken from last Sunday's sermon on Genesis 2:18-25 in our Genesis series.
Genesis 2:21 And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; 22 And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her to the man.
The LORD God did not leave man in the state of loneliness or incompletion, determining to make woman as the perfect companion and complement to man.
He does this through an act of what one might call “spiritual surgery.” He causes the man to fall into a deep sleep, and took from his side a rib, closing up the flesh (v. 21). Then from this rib he made the first woman (v. 22a).
There has been much attention given over the years as to the reasons for the creation of the woman in this way, though it must mostly remain speculative, since no clear inspired explanations are given.
The Puritan commentator Matthew Henry famously observed,
… woman was made of a rib out of the side of Adam; not made out of his head to rule over him, nor out of his feet to be trampled upon by him, but out of his side, to be equal with him, under his arm to be protected, and near his heart to be beloved.
He later adds a much more allegorical Christ-centered interpretation, writing:
Adam was a figure of him that was to come; for out of the side of Christ, the second Adam, his spouse the church was formed, when he slept the sleep, the deep sleep, of death upon the cross, in order to which his side was opened, and there came out blood and water, blood to purchase his church and water to purify it to himself.
Notice then in v. 22b how the LORD God brings the woman to the man. Here is his presentation of this special gift to Adam.
Maybe as a parent you have sometimes gotten a special gift for your child, perhaps at a birthday or Christmas. You made or got for him something you know that he will really love and delight to see and have. You may have become almost more excited to see him get the gift than he was to receive it. We can imagine God as like that here.
One commentator notes, “God is like a father who presents his son with a valuable gift that is bound to please him and be cherished by him. ‘See, he says, what I have prepared for you’” (Currid, Genesis, 112).
Woman was indeed a good gift given to man to complete the creation of God’s special image bearers.
Grace and peace, Pastor Jeff Riddle