Hebrew – Help Meet


ēzer negeḏ

Gen_2:18 reveals the exact reason God provided Eve for Adam: “The LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.” Here is an often misunderstood (even hated) verse, but it, along with 1Co_11:9— “Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man”—could not be clearer. Before we chalk all this up to some supposed “male chauvinism,” let us consider the truly incredible reason for it.

The Hebrew for help here is ‘ēzer (H5828), which speaks of a “helper, assistant, one who aids.” The most significant aspect of this word, however, is that most of its twenty-two occurrences indicate divine aid, especially in the Psalms (Psa_20:2; Psa_33:20; Psa_70:5; Psa_89:19; Psa_115:9-11; Psa_121:1-2; Psa_124:8; Psa_146:5). Think of it! A godly wife is actually divine aid. God made her specifically to aid the man. Why? Because he needs it! Meet, then, is negeḏ (H5048), which includes such concepts as “over against, corresponding to, and counterpart.” So God made man a counterpart, a helper who complements him, an assistant who is appropriate and suitable for his needs.

I certainly identified with a sign in a wallpaper and paint store that read, “Husbands choosing colors must have note from wife.” How true that is for me! If it’s not blue, then I don’t really care. If it weren’t for my wife’s knowledge, my clothes would seldom be coordinated. And that’s just one area in which she is a helper who is appropriate and suitable for my needs.

One writer says it well: “As a result of the Creation order, men and women are oriented to one another differently. They need one another, but they need one another differently. The man needs the help; the woman needs to help.” That says it perfectly. When we understand that principle, when we are related to our spouse as God has designed us to be, we will see our marriages transformed.

Scriptures for Study: Read the verses in Psalms mentioned above. How is God’s help pictured in Psa_33:20 and Psa_115:9-11? What response does such help generate in us (Psa_146:5)?

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