Biblical Marriage Homework Session Five

Homework – Session Five

In session five we focus on the role of wife and mother. When no other creature was found suitable for Adam, Eve was taken from his side and presented to Adam as helper.  (Hebrew – “EZER”) What does this helper look like in Scripture?  Focus on the dynamic description found in Proverbs 31: 11-14;

The heart of her husband trusts in her,

and he will have no lack of gain.

12    She does him good, and not harm,

all the days of her life.

13    She seeks wool and flax,

and works with willing hands.

14    She is like the ships of the merchant;

she brings her food from afar. [1]

Now read the following commentary on the same passage:

31:11–12 The husband has “full confidence” (v. 11) in her in every area of life; he trusts in her good sense, her fidelity, and her industry. Verse 11b emphasizes the latter: his house is full of the “booty” she brings in. Verse 12 similarly states that she is a continual source of benefits.

31:13 The large number of verses devoted to the industrious spirit of the woman establishes this as a major theme of the poem (vv. 13–19). In an age long before the industrial revolution, women had to work at spinning wool and making clothes in every spare moment; fidelity in this labor was a mark of feminine virtue. Rather than “with eager hands,” v. 13b might be translated somewhat more literally “at the pleasure of her hands.” The hands are semipersonified as taking pleasure in their creation and going about their work with a set purpose.9

31:14 She adds variety to the lives of her family by trading goods produced at home for food and merchandise the household cannot itself produce (v. 14). She has moved her household from a subsistence economy to a mercantile economy, and all enjoy the fruit of her enterprising spirit.[2]

 

For the women: After reading the commentary, write a brief description by example of what it is to be an ally.

 

For the men: After reading the commentary, write a brief description by example of what it is to have an ally.

 

[1] The Holy Bible: English Standard Version (Wheaton: Standard Bible Society, 2001), Pr 31:11–14.

[2] Duane A. Garrett, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs, vol. 14, The New American Commentary (Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1993), 249.

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