Christian Marriage 301: Structure (2 of 2)

“The Structure of Love”, part 2 of 2

In last week’s video, CM 301 (part 1 of 2), we began by focusing on love in God as the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit: one God in three persons.  As such, He has always delighted in love in specific ways and has never been needy in any way.  When He created us, He did so as an overflow of His love to give us Himself, not to give us to Himself.  He created us to delight in love as He loves.

But before we move forward to focus on the Ephesians passage in this week’s video below, it may be helpful to highlight some basics of loving in His image as seen in the very first husband and wife.

Notice in Genesis 1:27 that the only way that the Lord describes Adam and Eve as being created in His image is as “male and female” or husband and wife.  He could have described them as moral, intelligent, creative, volitional, emotional, or many other things that also would have been true.  But He chose to describe how they primarily relate to each other:  lover and beloved.  And the next few verses imply the equality of both persons to rule over the earth together and to enjoy life.  For this reflects the basics of God’s image, the loving Father, the beloved Son, and the Spirit of life and joy.  Genesis 1 gives this telescopic (big-picture) view of creation.  Genesis 2 gives the microscopic view.

In Genesis 2:7, we see that God created Adam first, and He did so from the dust of the earth and by “breathing into his nostrils the breath (literally, “Spirit”) of life”.  So our worth is to be because of Who lives in us.  Without Him, we are merely dust.  And because He blessed Adam with His Spirit, we are not to rule over the earth as dictators making more little dictators but in the character of His image as He rules.  Notice the work He gave Adam to do in Genesis 2:8-15:  cultivating life and joy all over the earth.  Yet, although Adam and the world were perfect, the Lord said “It is not good that man should be alone.  I will make a helper fit for him.” (Genesis 2:18)  Again, the most basic reflection of God’s image is not the power of ruling but the joy of relationship, so He made Eve.  And notice how He did.

The Lord made Eve, not from the dust, but from part of Adam.  She is a separate person, just as the Son and Spirit are separate Persons from the Father, but she is also part of him and to be as close as possible as described in Genesis 2:24, “one flesh”.  Now consider how they were to love differently.

  • God created man first, placing him in Eden to bear fruit in the world (a metaphor of cultivating life as God does), implying that He holds the husband primarily responsible for the work. (Genesis 2:5ff)
  • Since God created Adam first and gave His instructions only to him, this implies that He also holds the husband as primarily responsible to teach God’s Word to his wife and children. (Genesis 2:16-17)
  • And creating Eve after Adam implies that she is to love Adam and God by supporting her husband in these works of love. (Genesis 2:18ff)

 

You can see other articles and the embedded videos in this series here.

 

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If you’d like to know more about who publishes the articles, videos, and other materials on tools4trenches, you can click on the picture of me and my wife.

 

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