It was about twenty years ago as I sat at my small kitchen table, with red pencil in hand and papers spread out across the table. I had some questions that continually reeled through my mind. I knew that through prayer and study of God’s Word, the answers could be found.
I could recall the time that I had questioned who Jesus really was, and it was in the Bible that I had found the answers. I could recall the time that I was plagued with questions and doubts, when I uttered the simple prayer, “Lord, increase my faith!” and The Lord brought a new Bible study into the church that I attended. I could remember how, through that study, I was forever changed by the Word of God.
So here I sat with scattered piles of papers. This occasion was before the days when everyone had a home computer, so I had asked a friend, who did have a computer, to do me a favor – to print out the major passages of Scripture that were written directly to women or specifically about women and send them to me. And here they were. I knew that if I could lay the Scriptures side by side and compare scripture with scripture, The Lord could answer my questions.
I had learned, in my Christian life, that you could find multitudes of books about multitudes of topics, and you could listen to many different opinions and voices, but you would not find a consistency and continuity among them. So for me, the solution had become to put aside those things and just see what the Bible says.
And now, with verses before me and a prayer for The Lord to show me truth, I started my search. With my red pencil, I would mark similar words, similar thoughts, and similar passages. The search continued for quite some time. What I discovered was amazing! There was really no confusion at all! The Scripture was amazingly consistent! Growing up in the days of “women’s lib”, the world had successfully clouded and confused the issues regarding women. But sitting here at my kitchen table, there was no confusion. No confusion at all, just a calm sense of rejoicing over truth!
The first important truth that I discovered was to begin at the beginning. As Jesus taught about marriage in Matthew 19 and in Mark 10, He referred His listeners back to the beginning – all the way back to the Creation account in Genesis.
Then as the Apostle Paul taught in the book of 1 Corinthians 11, he referred those saints back to the beginning – all the way back to the Creation account in Genesis.
Next, in the wonderful exposition on marriage in Ephesians 5, the Apostle Paul again takes us back to the beginning – all the way back to the Creation account in Genesis.
And again, as the Apostle Paul writes to young Timothy in 1 Timothy 2, here the same truth is found. He takes Timothy back to the beginning – all the way back to the Creation account in Genesis.
I could see the problem clearly. As women, we often begin with our selves, our situations or circumstances, and our feelings and emotions. But the place that I would have to begin was at the beginning. That is where the word of God began, and that is where the writers of the New Testament returned to explain and expound truths about marriage and about women. That is where I, too, would begin – at the beginning.
Another exciting discovery that I made was that these truths regarding marriage were true at Creation – and that before the Fall. That meant this was God’s perfect design! I felt a freedom, as a woman, that I had never felt before – a freedom to be what God intended me to be!
I bowed my head and thanked The Lord. I picked up my papers and put them in my manila envelope. Time to put them away – for today, anyway. Time to cook supper. But this one thing I was sure of, I would be returning to this little stack of papers. And I would begin at the beginning – with a study of the Creation account in Genesis! I knew marvelous and freeing truth would be found there! And I couldn’t wait!