Woman was created to fill a gaping hole in the order of Creation. In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. Yet planets and twinkling stars, oceans teeming with iridescent fish, land covered with fruitful vegetation, and a Garden tended by a powerful man were declared not good by their Creator–all because woman was absent. Consider the fact that God specifically ordered his acts of creation to accentuate the world’s need for the race of women. God spoke these words: “It is not good that the man should be alone” (Genesis 2:18). He allowed Adam and all of creation to experience dismal life without her so that when she appeared, she would be treasured for the gift to both heavens and earth that woman was. God went out of his way to parade before the man his glaring need for woman.
Adam could never have known just how desperately he and all creation would need her. It was only after his horrific fall into sin that man realized how good of a gift woman really was. The serpent who had deceived them both into choosing death instead of life was told by God, “I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel” (Genesis 3:15). Man had no hope for salvation apart from the woman. It was the woman’s offspring that would bruise the serpent’s head. Before the Fall, the heavens and the earth were not good without the woman. After the Fall, the heavens and the earth had no hope of ever being good again without her.
Adam declared to all of creation and human posterity that their only hope rested in her: “The man called his wife’s name Eve, because she was the mother of all living” (Genesis 3:15). She was the life-giver. If salvation was ever to come, and if new life was to restore the heavens and the earth, it would come through the offspring of Eve. Man was lost if not for woman. Man was without hope if not for her life-giving presence in the created order. Not surprisingly, our Savior Jesus Christ was conceived of the Holy Spirit in a virgin woman, completely without the aid of man.
In our modern culture of sex changes and blurred gender lines, no one has more to lose than men. Women are a distinct creation–the only creatures without which all of heavens and earth were deemed not good by their Creator. Men brought death into the world. Cain killed his brother Abel. Only Eve was able to renew mankind’s hope by bearing a new son Seth in the place of Abel. Where men bring death, women are life-givers. This is not merely a reference to a woman’s fertility. Yes, the lineage of the universe’s Redeemer traces back to Eve’s mothering womb, but women mother and bring forth life wherever they are planted.
Consider Deborah, the judge who strengthened a cowering Barak to go forth and fight the battles of the Lord. Consider Abigail, who interceded for her foolish husband and prevented the slaughter of their entire camp. Consider Mary, who willingly submitted to the humiliation of unwed pregnancy, while a vicious King Herod sought to protect his petty and fragile pride through murder and death. Literal childbirth is only one of many ways that women are mothers–bringing life into this world.
It was said in the Garden, and it is as true in Christ’s Church: “It is not good that the man should be alone.” Women are life-giving mothers among the people Jesus Christ has saved. If women were essential for the salvation of all of heaven and earth, certainly they are indispensable to his New Creation begun in the Church. One of the most gracious commands in the whole New Testament comes in Paul’s instructions to Timothy: “Treat older women as mothers” (1 Timothy 5:2). God has not left men to tend his church without life-givers. He has given mothers to his people. Jesus Christ our Savior was given to us through a mother. It is God’s grace that Jesus continues to save, preserve, and give life to his church through the women who serve as mothers to God’s children.
Ladies, whether you have biological children or not, God intends to save his church through your essential, life-giving presence. May you lead men, women, boys, and girls to the Offspring of the woman, Jesus Christ, who crushed the head of the serpent. May your encouragement lift men up when they have fallen. May your words speak life into a world ruled by death. Most of all, may you believe that heaven and earth are not good without you and that God has sent his Son to bring forgiveness of sins to you so that he might give life through you.