By Pastor Ron Buxton
In the very first page of the Bible, Genesis chapter one, the reader sees the repeated phrase: “And God saw that it was good.” In fact, each of the seven times that God spoke the various components of creation into existence, those were His exact words of satisfaction. However, that flow of creative contentment comes to an abrupt halt in the following chapter, even though all of the original creation was yet unmarred with sin.
Genesis 2:18 records- “And the Lord God said, ‘It is not good that man should be alone.”
Remember, planet earth was still flawless as far as creative order and design goes. It was paradise. It was the garden of Eden. No death. No violence. No fears or worries that we have become so very much accustomed to in our own daily lives. And yet, it was not good that man should be alone even in that perfect environment. God’s solution to this problem was His masterpiece of creation —a woman. She would be the complementary and necessary gift needed to fulfill God’s greatest purposes for all of humanity. I think that Adam got it right when he identified her for the first time. He said in Genesis 2:23– “Whoa…man!” from which we have transliterated the term into our English language as “woman.” That’s my reading of the original Hebrew text, and I’m sticking to it…
Although much of society today, due to brokenness and poor life choices, might frown upon
the concept of marriage, we must remember that it was God’s idea and design in the first place. I grant that some people might never marry for a multitude of reasons, but for the vast majority of people that simply is not the case. And regardless of one’s marital status, there is no mistaken our vital interdependence for the common good of civilization.
John Donne wrote in 1624 – “No man is an island”, and that’s true even today. Our relationships are what make life worth living. In fact, quite possibly the cruelest punishment inflicted upon another human being is solitary confinement. It is a psychological nightmare when imposed for extremely long periods of time, and many individuals have even gone insane through its abuse in correctional institutions.
I’ve entitled this brief commentary–”The Truth About Prime Ribs” as a play on words about God’s creation of what I refer to as His masterpiece. If you are familiar with the biblical narrative then you know that God created Eve from one of Adam’s ribs. I believe this to be very literal and not just figurative in meaning. And many ministers, including myself, have borrowed the words of the late theologian Matthew Henry when performing a wedding ceremony. They are beautiful and
concise words that capture this “truth about prime ribs.”
Matthew Henry wrote –”The 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 to him, under his arm to be protected, and near his heart to be beloved.”
As we celebrate St. Valentine’s Day this year, let us give thanks unto our Creator for the special women in our lives. They might be our wives, or our mothers, or our grandmothers. Let
us see them as they were designed to be –masterpieces of heaven–the necessary gift needed to fulfill one of God’s greatest purposes for all of humanity.