Priest explains 1 of most controversial Bible verses
Couples from all over Metro Manila renew their life-long commitment to each other during an activity at the “Family is a Gift” conference, June 16, 2018. NIRVA DELACRUZ
By Nirva’ana Ella Delacruz
June 23, 2018
In a little under an hour, a priest explained one of the most controversial Bible passages – particularly for feminists – that describes woman as man’s “helper.”
“[God says during creation], ‘I will give man a helper fit for him.’ Whenever we hear the word ‘helper,’ a different thing comes to mind. What does it mean? Women get mad when they hear it (this verse). [They say], ‘What does the Bible think of women? Maids?,’” noted Fr. Joel Jason, head of the Commission for Family and Life of the Archdiocese of Manila, during the first talk of the “Family is a Gift” conference on June 16 at the SMX Convention Center here.
The priest explained to thousands of couples and families that the original word for “helper,” as used in Genesis 2:18, is the Hebrew word ezer, which means “redeemer.”
‘Someone who saves’
Ezer is mentioned in the Bible 21 times, said Jason, and is the same word used to describe God’s relationship with the nation Israel.
So far from being a pejorative term, “ezer” or “helper” denotes the wife’s unique and esteemed role in relation to her husband.
“Ezer is … (s)omeone who redeems you, someone who saves you. An ezer is a redeemer. So why is the woman called an ezer for the husband? Because the wife will redeem the husband from the absurdity of isolation, because the wife will redeem the husband from the absurdity of loneliness,” stressed the priest, who is also the parish priest of Our Lady Mirror of Justice in Makati.
Giving the first session of the whole-day event that featured workshops and talks on parenting, dealing with depression in the family, sexual intimacy, among others, Jason also described further the natural and God-given complementarity of men and women and why same sex couples will never truly duplicate the unity of heterosexual couples.
According to the priest, the truth of men and women’s design as natural complements is seen in each one’s undeniable anthropological and biological realities.
“The woman will complete the man…Complete and complement come from the same word. You can only be completed by your proper complement. A man and another man will not complement one another. They will only compete with one another. [They would say to each other], ‘Ano bang meron ka na wala ako? Meron din ako n’yan’ (What do you have that I don’t? I have that too),” explained Jason.
Organized by Couples for Christ, “Family is a Gift” conference gathered thousands of people from all over Metro Manila to celebrate the beauty of marriage and family life.