What does Genesis 2:22 mean?
ESV: And the rib that the LORD God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man.
NIV: Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.
NASB: And the Lord God fashioned into a woman the rib which He had taken from the man, and brought her to the man.
CSB: Then the Lord God made the rib he had taken from the man into a woman and brought her to the man.
NLT: Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib, and he brought her to the man.
KJV: And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man.
Verse Commentary:
The previous verse described God's removal of Adam's rib. Now God uses that rib to build a woman. Of course, the ultimate reasons why God chose to work in this way are a mystery to us. To this point, the only description of God's creative process has been of forming man and animals out of the earth, the dust of the ground. He could have formed this woman in the same way, but chose not to. Most likely, this was in order to emphasize the nature of the relationship between men and women.

God's creation of Adam used the Hebrew word yi'ser, which represents taking some existing substance and molding it into shape. In the case of woman, however, the Hebrew root word is banah, meaning "to build." God "built up" the woman from the foundation of Adam's rib. That word is similar in meaning, but carries some sense of "adding" what was not there before.

As Adam will say in the next verse, this origin connects man and woman at a fundamental level. They were literally made of the same stuff. They corresponded to each other. At the same time, this choice of Hebrew words says something important about the differences between men and women. Man was "formed" from existing material, but woman was "built up" from the foundation of man's rib. In other words, God added something in making the woman which was not included in that rib. While man and woman are intimately linked, and literally made for each other, they are also created as unique and separate genders. Male and female are not interchangeable or replaceable: they are exceptional.

When she is complete, God brings the woman to Adam. The God who provides has now given Adam the greatest of all possible earthly gifts: a helper, a companion, a wife. God is the giver of all good things (James 1:17), and Adam's response in the next verse will show us that he was overwhelmed by the goodness of this blessing.
Verse Context:
Genesis 2:15–25 returns to provide details about the sixth-day creation of human beings. After being crafted out of the substance of earth, man is placed in a garden by God. He is then given responsibility to care for the plants and trees there. God's first and only prohibition to the man is not to eat from the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, in the middle of the garden, on promise of death. Man is also charged with naming the animals, an act reflecting his God-given authority. God recognizes that it is not good for man to be alone and makes woman to be his helper, companion, and wife, establishing the pattern of God's design for human marriage.
Chapter Summary:
Genesis 2 begins with a description of the seventh day of creation, in which God rested from His work. Then it returns to the sixth day and describes in more detail the creation of man, the garden God placed him into, and the work God gave him to do. God recognizes that it is not good for man to be alone and makes a helper for him out of his own rib. This woman becomes Adam's companion and wife, setting the original example of God's design for marriage. The two exist in pure innocence, naked yet unashamed before sin enters into the world.
Chapter Context:
Genesis 2 concludes the description of God's week of creation and then zooms in on the creation of man, his work, his perfect environment, and the creation of woman as his helper and wife. It is our last glimpse of the world before it is ravaged by human sin and death with the disobedience of Adam and Eve in chapter 3. Where chapter 1 gave a full overview of creation, this chapter focuses more on a few specific events. These are crucial to understanding the fall of man.
Book Summary:
The book of Genesis establishes fundamental truths about God. Among these are His role as the Creator, His holiness, His hatred of sin, His love for mankind, and His willingness to provide for our redemption. We learn not only where mankind has come from, but why the world is in its present form. The book also presents the establishment of Israel, God's chosen people. Many of the principles given in other parts of Scripture depend on the basic ideas presented here in the book of Genesis. Within the framework of the Bible, Genesis explains the bare-bones history of the universe leading up to the captivity of Israel in Egypt, setting the stage for the book of Exodus.
Accessed 4/17/2024 11:34:54 PM
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