Difficulty: Since God created a woman out of a man to be his “helper,” does this indicate that women are not on equal par with men?
Explanation: God said, “ ‘Let us make human beings in our image, to be like ourselves’…male and female he created them” (Genesis 1:26-27). The woman was made in the same image and likeness of God as the man. Men were not given a more superior image of God, with God somehow creating women in a lesser image. Men and women equally share his image.
The psalmist David used it repeatedly in passages like “We put our hope in the Lord. He is our help and our shield” (Psalm 33:20). God is primarily portrayed by the Old Testament writers as the ezer—the one who surrounds us and helps us. This by no means is a lowly servant role. Rather, it is a lofty role to bring help to one who needs it. And many men today will admit they need the aid and help of not only God, but the expert aid and help of a woman in the person of a wife. When God created a female as a Godlike equal to help the male, it was a highly esteemed role, not one of inferiority or servitude. God considered the man to be in need of a woman and that didn’t mean he was inferior either. Women are not inferior for being a counterpart or companion to men, and men are not weak for needing women.
>Genesis actually has a uniquely high value of women. There are hundreds of other creation accounts in the ancient Near East besides Genesis. And yet Genesis uniquely climaxes with the creation of woman. The Babylonians, Sumerians, and Mesopotamians did not even think women worthy of mention in their creation accounts, and yet the biblical account has the woman being the final act of a progressive creation. The Bible values women.
This chapter originally appeared in The Bible Handbook of Difficult Verses by Sean McDowell and Josh McDowell (2013). Used by permission from Harvest House Publishers.