BEHIND THE WORD ‘HELPER’
Then the LORD God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him. Genesis 2:18
Lest any woman should feel insignificant because of how the word ‘helper’ has been unwrapped in our past, let the Word speak for itself today. The word for helper is ‘ezer’; one who provides aid or relief, one who imparts strength. Adam was incomplete without a counterpart who completed him. The word does not imply someone who is inferior. A helper is not less valuable than the one who is helped. How can we be sure of this? Hold on. Are you ready?
God describes Himself as a helper, an Ezer. Here’s just one example. “Hear O LORD, the voice of Judah and bring him in to his people. With your hands contend for him, and be a help (Ezer) against his adversaries.” Deut. 33:7 It is used another 21 times in the Old Testament.
As a helper to the man, a woman becomes his partner spiritually, bringing him her strengths. She completes him in what he lacks. He completes her in what she lacks. Man does not carve out his path void of her input. He thrives on her feedback. He knows that, left alone, he will not walk the path God has laid out for him successfully without plugging in her gifts. Where he is weak, she is strong, and vice versa.
A woman is neither inferior nor superior to a man. She is equal to him in worth. (Her function in the relationship and Adam’s leadership and responsibility for Eve is another topic. This devotional does not deny the order of authority as God designed it for the home.)
Being an ‘Ezer’ is who I am. I’m an image bearer of God just as Adam was. Just as God comes alongside, lends strength and nurtures, I model after my Creator and help the one for whom I was created. As an Ezer, I reflect the image of the glory of God.
In whatever ways Christian cultures have diminished a woman’s worth, heal our souls. Lift our heads. Amen.