Keepers at Home

In the Beginning...

The consequences of the first sin.

Home | Introduction | Making a Living | Keepers at Home | In the Beginning... | The Virtuous Woman | The Woman's Role | Final Thoughts


We know that at creation God created everything:  the heavens, the earth, the animals, the waters, and man.  Genesis 1:27:  "So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him. . ."  And, thus, we read about Adam, the first man--created by God.  We read of how he was set in the Garden of Eden with simple instructions:  (Gen. 2:16-17)  "And the Lord God commanded man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:  But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it:  for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die."  This is the first commandment that God gave man.  A very simple one, too.  Adam was told not to eat of a certain tree.  If he did, he would die.  We also know that God decided that is wasn't good for man to be alone (Gen. 2:18).  In this verse, God states:  "I will make him an help meet for him."  He is speaking of woman.  This phrase "help meet" means an aid that is suitable for the task.  Woman was to be this "help meet" for man; or, the helper/aid that was suitable to the task of helping man.  Therefore, we know that woman was made for the man.  The first woman, Eve, was made for Adam, the first man.  II Corinthians 11:8-9 states:  "For the man is not of the woman; but the woman of the man.  Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man."  This, of course, is not very popular for the modern-day woman, but it is God's way and His plan. 

We know from further reading in Genesis chapter 3 that the serpent, which was Satan, beguiled the woman and convinced her to eat the forbidden fruit.  Eve gave into the temptation presented by the devil and sinned.  After Eve ate of the fruit, she then convinced Adam to eat of it also.  We know this to be the first sin ever committed against God and His will.  Adam and Eve disobeyed a direct commandment from the Father, and in doing so brought upon themselves some terrible repercussions, or curses.  God was not going to allow this sin to go unpunished.  He had given a rule for Adam and Eve to follow and they had broken it.  So, God established curses on both of them--on man and woman.  These curses are still in effect today for mankind and womankind. 

Genesis 3:16 reads:  "Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee."  This is the curse that God placed on Eve and on all of womankind.  Even with all our technological advances and invention of painkillers, women still have great pain and agony bringing a child into this world.  That's the first part of the God's curse on woman.  This curse did not exist before they committed their sin.  It was not until after that God found it necessary to place this punishment on woman.  The second part of the curse deals with the fact that man "shall rule over" the woman.  The woman is to be in subjection and submission to the man.  Again, this was not so before they committed their sin--only afterwards.  This idea of submission of the woman to the man is carried over into the New Testament scriptures:  Ephesians 5:22-24; I Peter 3:1; Colossians 3:18 are some of the scriptures that deal with this concept.  These curses are specifically for the woman.  In no way can these curses apply to the man.  It is impossible.  They are strictly put on Eve and onto womankind because of the sin she committed in the Garden of Eden.

Genesis 3:17-19 lays out the curse God placed on Adam and all of man:  "And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it:  cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field; In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken:  for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return."  This is God's curse placed upon mankind.  God gave it specifically to Adam and not to Eve; therefore, it is a curse put upon mankind and not womankind.  According to this curse, man was to be responsible now for working the ground to provide for his family.  Before they sinned, Adam did not have to do this.  Everything they could have possibly wanted to eat of was available to Adam and Eve without any work required.  After they sinned, God cursed man to work for his "bread", as the scriptures say, "in sorrow."  Not only does man have to work the ground for his food, but God said the ground was "cursed" and that thorns and thistles would plague man in his working of the ground.  And, of course, this curse is still in effect today.  Men still have to do this.  No matter how far we've advanced, man still has to work by the sweat of his brow to provide for his family. 

Even from the beginning in the Garden of Eden it is easy to see that God had specific roles in mind for man and for woman.  These curses help illustrate the fact that it was God's intention from the start that man be the provider.  This is a role and responsibility that was placed on the man.  So, we see from the offset of creation God's will for the man and His will for the woman.

Are these concepts carried into the New Testament?  Yes.  God would never leave His children without His guidance and instruction.

I Timothy 5:8 states:  "But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel."  The pronoun here in the scripture is masculine:  "he" and "his"; the scriptures are pointing to male Christians.  If God set the curses on man and woman in the Garden of Eden, then these curses must still be in effect when this passage of scripture was written.  The phrase "his own house" refers to the one who is the head of that house, or who makes the governing decisions for that house.  Who is the leader of a house?  Does the Bible say?  I Corinthians 11:3 reads:  "But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God."  This corroborates what we studied from Genesis about the man being the head of the woman.  It also states the hierarchy of God to Christ to man to woman.  Again, this is God's will and His plan for how we view our roles and our lives.  Ephesians 5:23 further supports this:  "For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church:  and he is the saviour of the body."  Further corroboration for man being the leader of his own house is found in

I Timothy 3: 4-5.  Paul has written instruction to Timothy concerning the selection of elders into the Church.  Beginning in chapter three of I Timothy, Paul begins a list of "requirements" a man must meet before he can be considered to be an elder in the Church.  I Timothy 3:4-5 gives us one of those "requirements":  "One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?)  Man is the head, or leader, of "his own house."

So, I Timothy 5:8 is referring to the man and his responsibility to his household.  That responsibility entails providing for his own, which are those in his immediate family--wife and children.  But his responsibility does not end there.  The verse reads:  "But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel."  We have already established that "his own house" refers to a man's wife and children; however, the verse also talks of "his own", which is a distinction from "his own house."  "His own" addresses other family members outside the circle of a man's "own house."  For example, if a man's father dies, that man has an obligation to take care and support his mother.  His mother being one of "his own", but not being of "his own house." 

But why would God make this man who doesn't provide "for his own" or "his own house" a man who has "denied the faith" and "worse than an infidel"?  Why is God's judgment of this man so seemingly harsh?  What this states is that a Christian man (one who has been baptized) who does not provide for his family is someone who has turned his back on God and God's will and is worse off than any unbeliever.  That is what this verse explains to us.  Even though a man may be a Christian, if he does not take care of his own, he is worse than someone who has never believed, repented, confessed, and been baptized.  But, still the question is why?  The answer lies in the fact that if a man is not providing for his own, he is not following God's plan.  And anyone who does not follow God's plan is sinning.  It is God's plan for the man to be the provider.  Therefore, it stands to reason, that a man must do all he can to provide for his family as a fulfillment to God's will.  God expects the man to take on this role as leader of the family.  This role is specifically assigned to the man. 

This scripture reflects and reinforces the curse that was placed upon Adam by God in Genesis and carries it through into New Testament philosophy.  The same holds true for the woman being obedient to her husband and having difficulty in childbirth.  It carries through and will do so until the end of time.  God set these curses upon man and woman because they were disobedient to His will for them in the Garden of Eden.  For their disobedience, God enacted punishment that was proper for the sin that they committed.  In addition to these curses, man would now live out a life cycle and then die, or pass from this life.  Before Adam and Eve sinned there was not death for man; however, that changed after they sinned.  This "curse" is also still in effect for man today.  We all live out a certain number of years and then we die.

All of these things have beginnings in the Garden of Eden and will continue throughout time until the end comes and the Savior returns.  Again, this is God's will for mankind.  He set these things in motion and we must understand this so that we will comprehend His will for our lives and obey it.

If the concept of the man being provider was established in the beginning, why do so many Christians defy it?  So many Christians work diligently to serve and obey God and His will for their lives; however, some choose to find "justification" for choices they make that they fell may not quite be in God's word.  Unfortunately, it comes in the form of using scriptures to justify such actions.  In the case of keepers at home, this is no different.  So many brethren have searched furiously in the Bible to find some shred of scriptural support for their wives working outside the home.  In fact, many have gone to Proverbs 31 (the "virtuous woman" chapter, as it is commonly known as) to find their loophole or "proof" that women can leave the home and hold a full-time job to help "make a living."  Does Proverbs 31 give us this loophole?  Or, are men seaching valiantly to defy the will of God?  To understand further we need to examine Proverbs 31.



Enter supporting content here