A Particular Man for a Particular Woman,

No. 1


A particular man for a particular woman. This is the first part of a three part series. Since God has a best plan in all things that pertain to His creation, He has a one best mate for each person. The wrong person in marriage can create a life of misery for you at worst; or, a life of boredom at best. There are many wrong reasons for getting married and these result in people choosing the wrong mates. We do have some biblical evidences of the plan of God--that His plan is a one-for-one design in marriage. These are the evidences that we're going to be looking at.

Adam and Eve

The first one is the precedent of creation. Genesis 2:21: "And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam and he slept. And he took one of his ribs and closed up the flesh instead thereof. The rib which the Lord God had taken from man made He a woman and brought her unto the man." What we have read here is a true historical incident. This is a piece of history. This is not a poem. This is not a fable. This is not a myth which is trying to convey some concept. It is an actual piece of bonafide history.

Adam was in the garden naming the animals, as we read in Genesis 2:20, when he discovered something about himself: "And Adam gave names to all cattle and to the fowl of the air and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper fit for him." As he named the animals he discovered that there was no one like himself. There was no helper who was fit or suited for man. There was no one who was the opposite sex to himself. There was no one who was a counterpart to himself in spirit, soul, and body. Consequently, Adam found himself in a certain state of loneliness and a state of unfulfillment. God therefore proceeded to take a rib from Adam and to build the woman. It is not the purpose of God for any man or woman to be unfulfilled. Consequently, He provides the right partner which is necessary for that fulfillment of our beings, or He provides the gift of celibacy in the case of those called to a specialized service.

The rib which God took from Adam was built into a woman; that is, into a female person. The word for build here is the Hebrew word "banah." Now this particular word stresses the idea of the production of a human being like Adam. There are other words that are used for God's creation, or God's productions, which are not used. For example there's the Hebrew word "bara." "Bara" is the classical word for "create," and it means to create out of nothing. This is the word which is used in Genesis 1:27: "So God created man in His own image. In the image of God created He him. Male and female created He them." Here God, by the power of his spoken word, commands the dust of the ground to form, to shape itself into a man, and gives that creature which is formed by His spoken word the gift of life. "Bara" is not the word which is used here in reference to what God did with Adam's Rib.

He also did not use another Hebrew, "asah." "Asah" means to make something out of something, and it would seem to be a benefiting word here, for a woman was being made out of a rib. This is the word which is used in Genesis 1:26: "And God said, 'Let us make ("asah") man in our image.'" He is making man out of something that He has already created. God had previously created, by his creative word ("bara"), into existence the materials out of which man's physical structure was made. He says, "Let us make man," and he uses the word for "make something out of something"--man out of the dust of the ground.

Then there was another Hebrew word, a third one, which was not used, and that's "jatzer," "Jatzer" means to fashion or to mold as a potter does with clay. This would seem to have been a fitting word to describe the creation of the woman. It's used in Genesis 2:7: "And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground. This is describing how God shaped him by his spoken word into the form of a human being. None of these Hebrew words is used. The one that is used is "banah." Though some of these others would be suitable, "banah" is used because what God the Holy Spirit is stressing in this Scripture is the production of a human being as a whole who was a counterpart to Adam. That's the thing that God had set out to do in order to meet Adam's need for fulfillment. Adam knew he needed somebody but he had no solution. Neither did he seek to come up with one. I would stress to you that the Scriptures say that God brought the woman to man in verse 22: after He completed the woman "and brought her unto the man."

Faith Rest

Now this is the only way that right partners get together even today. This is a biblical principle. Adam was not told to chase around the garden looking behind the trees and under the bushes for a surprise that God had prepared for him. Instead, Adam had been taught because God taught him doctrine as he met with him day by day. Adam had learned the faith rest technique, to rest upon God and trust Him to make provision in due time for each of our needs. Because Adam was faith resting, he waited until God brought the woman to him. This is the first step to finding your right particular person in marriage. It is a very great temptation to accept the general pattern of our day of running off to wherever you think the possibilities are greater.

Every now and then, we have someone here at Berean, some young man usually, that gets panicky and gets itchy and nervous and decides he has to find himself a bigger church that has wider possibilities so that he can find someone to marry. They go out and they find someone, but without realizing that probably in all likelihood what they have found is someone that they have settled for, someone that will do, because they violated the principle of faith resting to permit God to cross your path with the path of the one he has prepared for you.

This is very important. I cannot stress this enough that you follow this pattern in arriving at the person that you're going to marry. Do not run around checking people over and seeking someone. Wait until God brings that person. Now when you do find that person, it will be an act of God's grace. It will be something that we do not deserve, nor have we earned, but it will be a gift which He brings in good time. While you're waiting for this grace gift, this is the time to be learning doctrine in order to sharpen your recognition signals within your own soul. God taught Adam before Eve ever came on the scene. When Eve was brought to Adam, Adam's radar locked on her and he got a clear blip that she was it.

In verses 23 and 24, we have described for us this recognition by Adam: "And Adam said, 'This is now bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh. She shall be called woman because she was taken out of man.' Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother and shall cleave to his wife and they shall be one flesh." My bone and my flesh means a human being like Adam--different from the animals who have no spirits. Eve was perfectly suited to Adam since she was a woman from the man. She was his type. She was his kind. She was created by God in such a way that she was suited for just this particular man, which was fortunate in itself because there weren't too many other fellows around for her to be suited to. This is the precedent of creation that we're speaking of. God had prepared this woman in such a way that she was suited to this man alone.

Now the precedent includes the principle of separation from your in-laws. Once a couple has committed themselves to marriage, they are to carry the consequences of that choice. They are not to follow, as is often done today, the rule that the young people move in with the parents; they are not to lean upon the parents economically; and, they are not to organize their lives in such a way that they continue to be dependent upon their parents. What the Word of God tells us is that the two are to leave father and mother, physically and emotionally, and they are to cleave unto one another. The Hebrew word for "cleave" is "davak." The word means to coalesce or adhere, in soul and then in body. These two are to cleave to one another, to coalesce, in soul and body, so that they form one flesh which refers to their sexual union in marriage. This union symbolizes oneness in the eyes of God.

There was sex in the Garden of Eden before the fall and it was for recreational companionship purposes. The purpose of procreation was not activated until after the fall. Adam and Eve were perfectly happy with each other, and they were totally fulfilled because they were right for each other. They were right for each other, not because they had done something to make themselves right for each other, but because God had so designed them. It is still the order of creation that happiness in marriage stems from the union of two right people--maximum happiness and marriage. Again, you can have a marriage of a kind with any number of people that will be fairly acceptable. But when we speak of maximum returns in marriage, it has to be with a unique combination that God has designed. The old sin nature takes this design of God and it distorts what God has produced so that the right people either don't recognize each other, or when they do meet each other they are already married to the wrong person.

Verse 25 adds the fact that both were naked, the man and his wife, and they were not ashamed. This is a sign of the right partners. There was no embarrassment nor intimidation in each other's presence. Perversions of sex are the source of shame. It's the wrong combination of partners that creates a sense of shame. While soul unity is basic to sex happiness, it can only fully be experienced between the right partners. When it is between the right partners, there is no intimidation and there is no shame. Sex was provided for recreation, as we have said, and for procreation, but only within the confines of marriage. Sexual morality, therefore, is required in the bible of both believers and unbelievers in order to protect this designed relationship of a right man with a right woman. Immorality will ruin it.

So the first evidence that we have in the Scriptures of this design that God has only one person that He intends for you to marry, and that He has prepared for you, is the precedent of creation itself in the way that Eve was brought to Adam.

The Church

A second evidence is the analogy to church truth. Ephesians 5:31 is quoting the Genesis 2:24 passage that we have just read: "For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother and shall be joined unto his wife and they two shall be one flesh." It quotes Genesis 2:24, and then it goes on in Ephesians 5:32 to compare this to the unique relationship of Jesus Christ and the church: "This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church." The idea here is that there is only one Lord for the church, and so also there is one particular man, or "lord," as 1 Peter 3:6 calls him, for each woman.

Paul calls this a mystery because it is referring to the exclusive relationship which has been revealed in Scripture between Jesus Christ and the church. This is a new revelation. The word mystery in Scripture indicates something which previously has been hidden in Old Testament times but which is now made known in New Testament times. This is a mystery--a marvelous unique personalized relationship between Jesus Christ and the church. He is not so related to the Old Testament saints. He is not lord of the Old Testament saints. They are a totally different group of people with whom God deals in a totally different relationship. Only those who come within this age of grace, those who are born again, whether Jew or Gentile, by faith in the sacrifice of Jesus Christ upon the cross in behalf of our sins--only these are members of the body of Christ. Only these are Christian and in the group that the Scriptures refer to as the church. This group is the bride of Christ. It is related to Jesus Christ in a distinct relationship. So, it's a mystery. The relationship of Jesus Christ to the church, or even the whole concept of the church, was never revealed in the Old Testament. That was entirely a new thing begun on the day of Pentecost.

So at salvation, a person is placed by God the Holy Spirit, through the baptism of the Holy Spirit which a person experiences automatically at the point of salvation--God the Holy Spirit baptizes him into union with Jesus Christ. By this baptism, he is related to Jesus Christ. Later, he is to be married to Jesus Christ in heaven. No one else can be so uniquely joined by God to Jesus Christ. The relationship of Christ and the church is unique. Ephesians 5:33: "Nevertheless, let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself, and the wife see that she reverence her husband." The words "in particular" indicate that each individual is to view himself as a unique individual since he's designed for a relationship to only one other person.

The thing that each husband is called upon to do toward his wife, as we've already learned, is to love her. This is that Greek word "agapao," which is a mental attitude goodwill such as a person actually has for his own structure, his own being. So, the Scripture says everyone loves himself. Every normal person has an attitude of goodwill toward his own being and desires that which is good for himself. He is unique unto himself in his own being, and so he treats himself as unique to himself. Each man, however, can only really love in the maximum way the one right woman. To her he can be a true aggressor. To him she can fully respond. The wife, on the other hand, is told that she has to reverence her husband, which assumes of course that he is her right man. You can't honor somebody who is not your right man. The wife is not told that she is to love her husband, but to reverence, to respect, him. Her love is the outgrowth of her capacity to respond to this man. Her response is drawn out from her as the result of the mental attitude love which this man exercises toward her. Then this mental goodwill which each bears toward the other, the husband first drawing this out from the wife, results in the emotional "phileo" attachment toward one another.

The word for "reverence" is the Greek word "phobeo." This word means to respect. Grammatically it is in the present tense. That means that this is to be the wife's continual attitude. It is in the middle voice which indicates that she benefits personally by this attitude. It is in the subjunctive mode which indicates that its potential attitude. It's something that is possible, especially for a woman with her right man.

A wife can be happy or she can be unhappy with her husband at any particular point. She can like him or she can dislike him. She can be calmed by him or she can be irritated. But always, if he is her right particular man, she will respect him. Whatever her feelings at any particular moment may be, there will always be the undergirding spirit of respect. For this reason, you women should not marry a man that you don't respect. That in itself is a sign that he's the wrong one for you. See to it that you do not get emotionally involved. Don't continue dating somebody that you don't respect. You may get acclimated to that disrespect toward him until it becomes acceptable to you. You rationalize it. Respect connotes a strong feeling. If you're just neutral towards some man, that in itself signals that you don't have a respect for him.

So the right partners are always stable in their love for each other--the man in his love for the wife, and the woman in her respect for him. This is a second indication that God has a particular man for a particular woman--the analogy to church truth. There's only one Lord that is totally suited for the church. There is only one Lord who is properly suited to be related to the church, and that is Jesus Christ. There is only one bride who is particularly suited to the Lord Jesus, and that is the church. Then in that same passage where that is pointed out, joining it here to the Genesis passage which speaks about the joining together of a husband and wife as one flesh, this is compared to the same relationship that exists between Christ and the church--a one-for-one design.

Judah - Jeremiah 31:22

Let's look at a third indication of the arrangement of a particular man for a particular woman. In Jeremiah 31:22, we have the principle that the right partners have bodies designed for each other alone. The right partners in marriage have bodies designed for each other alone. Jeremiah 31:22: "How long will you go about, oh you backsliding daughter? For the Lord has created a new thing in the earth. A woman shall encompass a man." The combination here is Judah and God in the Old Testament. In the Old Testament, Judah was related to God as wife. The context here is a warning to the Jews about the apostasy that has been rampant among them for a long long time. They have gone so far that spiritual hardness, or calluses, have developed in their soul so they are insensitive to the Lord God to whom they are related as husband to wife. They are insensitive within their minds. They do not think like God. They are insensitive within their wills. They do not choose the way God chooses. They are insensitive in their emotions. They are disoriented in their emotions. They do not feel about things and circumstances and people the way God feels about them.

This is what is meant by the expression, "You backsliding daughter." Judah has gone a long way away from the Lord as her right man. The Jews were uniquely designed to belong to the Lord. They were uniquely related to Him. No other nation on the face of the earth had this particular relationship to God. Judah was so designed. Idolatry had overcome the nation and they violated thereby this oneness. This was spiritual adultery on their part. The oneness of the relationship that they had in such an exclusive unique way with God had been violated by their adulterous practices toward idol gods.

Now what the Lord God is exclusively to Judah, the particular man is to the particular woman. They are the keys to each other's beings. Judah thus is trying to find fulfillment and happiness in idols for which he was never designed. Consequently, she is pursuing the wrong man and can never hope to find fulfillment or happiness. This is the same thing on the human level. When we pursue the wrong person, when we are related in marriage to the wrong person, happiness will elude us. The prophet says that God, the Lord, has created a new thing. The word "Lord" refers to Jesus Christ, because Colossians 1:16 tells us that the creator of the universe was the Lord Jesus. So when it speaks here in this context concerning creation (it says, "The Lord has created it."), it is referring to Christ, the pre-incarnate Christ. "Created" is the Hebrew word "bara" for creation out of nothing. What Jesus Christ incorporated into his creation at the beginning was something that did not exist up to that point--a new thing. What was that new thing? That a woman shall encompass a man.

Now there are certain important words to observe here. First of all is "woman." The normal Hebrew word for woman is "ishae." The man is called "ish," meaning man, and the woman is "ishae." Now "ishae" is the Hebrew word which refers to woman as a whole, in the totality of her being in reference to her spirit and her soul and her body. Genesis 2:22 speaks of the woman in this way: "And the rib which the Lord God had taken from man made He a woman, made He an "ishae", and brought her unto the man. Now in Jeremiah 31:22, this is not the word for woman. It is a different Hebrew word. It is the word "nekevah." This is the word for female, stressing her physical structure as distinct from the male. In Genesis 1:27, "nekevah" is the word which is used. Genesis 1:27: "So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created him male and female." Male and "nekevah" created He them. This verse is stressing the sexual difference between the man and the woman. The word indicates how she is distinct in this respect from the man. It stresses not just the fact that she is a woman as a being in general different from the man, but specifically the sexual difference.

Now the next word is encompass. The Lord Jesus Christ has created a new thing in that a female shall encompass a man. The word "encompass" is "tesovev." It comes from the Hebrew "savav," and "savav" means to fit, to embrace, or to surround. Grammatically it's in the Hebrew Pual future, the Pual stem, and it carries in the Pual the intensive sense which indicates here a close exact unique fit. The future tense indicates that the action of encompassing is still going on. That is, that there are still women who physically sexually fit exactly some specific man in a unique divinely ordained design. The point is that each woman has her particular man. This is a new thing, he says, in the creative order, in God's creative program at the beginning, because it began with Eve, since the animals are not designed as a specific animal for another specific animal. This was a new thing that when Eve was created, here was a creature within God's order of creative design who on a physical level was designed to fit, to embrace, to encompass, and to surround, one man in particular. Consequently, promiscuity violates this exclusive design. The responses become indifferent to the right man or to the right woman. Marriage to the wrong partners may be a marriage that will do, but on the basis of what this Scripture reveals, we have indicated to us, that maximum joy sexually is never achieved apart from that unique designed one of the woman who fits one man.

Also, the word for man here is interesting because it is the Hebrew word "gaver." "Gaver" is a male hero. It is not the word "ish." The word for "ish" is for man taken as a whole. Nor is it the word that was used for male in Genesis 1:27 when it said, "So God created man in his own image; in the image of God created He male and female created He them. This is not the word which stresses the man in his physical structure. It is the man as a hero, as a strong man, as a particular one in a unique heroic sense to this woman. The reason she respects him as hero is because he alone brings out her deepest responses in her soul and in her body to fulfill her desires for the man. This thing which God has built into the woman, this insatiable desire for the man, is fulfilled by this one man because he is her hero. No one else can be the hero to this woman except her one right man.

So physical immorality comes along and this wrecks the potential fulfillment because we are rejecting the combination designed from eternity past exclusively for you. Don't settle in marriage for just anyone that you may like or find attractive. Settle only for your custom-made man or woman. This is a fantastic revelation.

Dr. John E. Danish, 1970

Back to the Marriage index

Back to the Bible Questions index