(This is blog #2 about the songs featured on my new release, the “Creation EP”.
Genesis 2:22 And the rib that the Lord God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man. 23 Then the man said,
“This at last is bone of my bones
and flesh of my flesh;
she shall be called Woman,
because she was taken out of Man.”
The Genesis creation story is something I’ve been fairly obsessed with for a few years. I’ve studied it inside and out and every which way. I’ve taken a college course on it, I’ve studied the original language and even had conversations with translators. My life has been incredibly enriched by the beauty of this passage, but the point of this blog is not to give you an exposition on it. That’s been done a thousand times before and done better than I could ever do it. What I want you to concentrate on, is the story. I want you to put yourself in it. Try not to concern yourself with it’s literalism, for that isn’t the point. Richard Rohr puts it: “Literalism is the lowest form of meaning.” Meaning, when you’re only concerned about something’s historical authenticity, you miss it’s spiritual lesson.
So here we have Adam, alone in the garden, for who knows how long. He’s been hard at work tending to it, when God gives him the task of naming the animals. He gives him this task for the purpose of finding a “helper”. Now, these verses here may feel a bit quick, but naming things in jewish culture was serious business. In fact the Hebrew word there can be defined “to study and know”. So the story here is not about naming our animal friends, but about a great search for companionship.
Can you imagine the loneliness? In the story Adam is presumably the only person. God was there to talk with him, but there was no human interaction. The garden is described as a beautiful place, and as the story goes it kept him occupied, but deep down he still had a need to be known by another human. He had a need for intimacy, and community.
Well inevitably , the animals were not what he needed. So God intervenes, puts Adam to sleep and performs the surgery that trumps all surgeries. Out of Adam he creates the pinnacle of beauty of all His creation, the woman.
When I wrote “At Last” I tried to keep the idea in mind that this was more than just a dude finally finding his girl. This was a man, seeing a woman, for the first time. Ever. What must that have been like? I was continually moved by that thought, and challenged to try to encapsulate it. “This at last is bone of my bones, flesh of my flesh”. Adam feels such relief, and such beauty. He finally found his partner. His companion. His Ally. His wife.
They are one.
There are so many parallels to be drawn. To marriage, to the church, to Christ. But the parallel I’m most drawn to is that of all humanity. Adam and Eve are fundamentally different, yet they are the same. They are human. I, as a middle aged caucasian male am fundamentally different from many people around me. From the color of our skin, our worldview, belief systems, to our favorite sports teams. We are different, and yet we are the same. We all desire to be loved, to be wanted. We need to feel respected and cared for. We are all searching for answers. We need nourishment and shelter. None of us know what lies in the next life, or if there is one. We share in these things. We share in hope, and in an eternal one.
My hope, my belief, is that someday, in this life or the next, the chaos, the hate, and the tension between us will subside, and we will see ourselves for what we are:
Made for each other.
And in that moment our overwhelming feeling will be At Last.