As I meditate on Eve’s role in Scripture, I see that this woman was a real individual who lived in communion with God. I believe that God intends deep meaning in every bit of His word, even in the mention of the names of women I barely know, or about whom I have no details. As every syllable of Scripture is God-breathed, I know there isn’t a single superfluous note, and that God intends for me to hear His voice in all of it. These women were mothers, daughters, and sisters who sinned and were convicted, experienced blessing and loss, abandonment, fear, vulnerability, power, prophecy, and love. I am subject just as much to their gain as I am to their loss.
What I found in these women reveals God’s character to a depth that a man’s story could never tell. By looking more closely at these women in Scripture, I am able to see a side of God and His character that would be largely unnoticed if I only focused on the men. These women have also pointed me directly to Jesus, and some revealed the coming redemption long before Jesus came in the flesh. Their lives were living prophecies of God’s only Son. I continue to be intrigued by these wonderful women, but none have felt quite so vindicated and so revealing of God’s inherent and perfect grace as the mother of all living things.
Eve was the woman who was intended to be Adam’s ezer, or fellow warrior, who co-protected the garden of Eden. She was the other half of God’s image in the garden, and lived in close communion with God before the Fall.
I know what God’s presence feels like, and so did Eve. She was there before the Fall widened a gap between God and her, a mistake that reverberated through all creation, and yet God reported in Genesis that she created sons and daughters in partnership with God.
“With the help of the Lord I have brought forth a man”—Genesis 4:1
I sat with this moment in Scripture—Eve making a statement before God about her child as something she and God worked on together, and I imagined what kind of weight must have fallen on Eve’s shoulders after disobeying God’s direct orders. I feel the gravity of her sin bearing down especially through the lens of current Christian culture, with hers as the example of ultimate sin.
I relate to Eve both as a fellow sinner and as an artist. I am very familiar with debilitating guilt, the shame of needing forgiveness, and the feeling that I and the person I wronged will never be the same. As an artist, I understand how difficult it is to move on from negative thoughts brought on by personal mistakes, both because of my inherent melancholy and my need for perfection. Sometimes it is difficult to move, knowing that I have broken or disappointed God’s heart again.
I have failed miserably as a human being on numerous occasions, and the guilt that weighs me down draws an enormous gulf between my Father God and me. I am forever only made of dust, and my daily actions of anger and impatience with my family and my circumstances seem to define someone who does not know the loving patience of God. These actions would be the sole narrative of my life, if it wasn’t for God’s unconditional and all-knowing love. This is illustrated beautifully in Eve’s story.
I find profound encouragement in Eve’s communion with God after her sin.
Her claim that she created a child in partnership with God does not sound like a woman who no longer knows the love of God in her life. As I mourn over my lack of perfection as a human, this moment in Scripture brings me life-giving, immeasurable comfort, and Eve’s vocation as a warrior-helper to Adam gives me strength, both spiritually and physically.
Eve’s moment of praise shows a woman already pardoned. She may have broken the world, but this alone does not dominate her narrative, nor mine. She was also the mother of all living things, a partner of God, and a warrior alongside Adam. As I meditate on her as someone made of flesh as real as my own, I see myself in Eve: the mother of children and other creative ventures, which I pursue in partnership with God, as I battle life’s challenges alongside my own husband.
I am more than my sin. I am a mother, enabled to create in partnership with God, and I am a warrior navigating the protection and health of my natural and chosen family.
Amy Altstatt is a faith-driven writer, passionate about women finding their own voice in Scripture and seeing how God reveals His plan and character through women as active participants in the gospel of redemption, freedom, and hope. She is currently writing a book that reexamines how God tells His story through even the most subliminal female characters in Scripture. Amy’s websites are: Amyaltstatt.com and https://www.patreon.com/Adrinkofwater?fan_landing=true.