In the beginning, God created the universe and then filled it with life. God made the first human— and he was very good. Then God fashioned a very good woman—because He decided that even in a perfect world, it’s far from good for humans to exist without other humans.
In fact, God says of the man’s loneliness, “I will make a helper fit for him” (Genesis 2:18). The word “helper”, is the Hebrew word ezer. This powerful word appears several times in the Old Testament (including Exodus 18:4; Psalm 121:1, 124:8; Ezekiel 12:14; and Isaiah 30:5), mostly to describe God’s mighty military intervention. To paraphrase Genesis 2:18, ezer describes Eve as
the one who has Adam’s back. Ezer is a word imbued with strength, tenacity, and fierceness that the English word “helper” can miss.
Before sin even came into the world, the Lord knew humans needed other humans in order to flourish. Our need to have each other’s back has only increased because of the rampaging presence of sin both in the world and in our everyday struggles. Sometimes we feel it when we roll out of bed after a fitful night of sleep and wake with a weight on our shoulders. Our feet hit the floor and all we want to do is skulk back into our beds and crawl into ourselves. We feel in those moments that it is good for us to be alone. Isolation is one of Satan’s best playing cards.
Sin blows up real-life relationships with all the messiness of characters on our favorite soap opera. Sin changed the relationship between humans and God and between the man and the woman. At first, Adam and Eve were naked and unashamed—free to love, cohabit, work, plan, and rest without inhibition. But after sin entered into the world, shame dropped like a bomb, compelling them to cover themselves with fig leaves and hide from God. We have been hiding ourselves ever since. The proper cover for our emotional nakedness, however, isn’t hiding; it’s confession. This is one of the reasons that the Holy Spirit convicts us of sin and compels us to admit wrongdoing. Thankfully, the Spirit does not leave us vulnerable; He covers us with forgiveness and cleansing (1 John 1:9).