Relationship, relationship, what is a relationship? In this day and age the term ‘relationship’ has all but lost its substantive and profound meaning. What is the difference between a ‘relationship’ and a ‘ REALationship? ’ The spelling for one, yet deeper than that is the reality that at the core of this human desire to bond and connect is a searching for something REAL and authentic. Yet what is the Biblical interpretation of relationship?
In order to fully grasp and appreciate the significance of relationships we must first research its meaning. Relationship is a compound word derived from two words, ‘Relation’ and ‘Ship’. Often we assume that to ‘relate’ means to have something in common with or to have a unique and special bond with a person or thing. Although there are aspects of relationship that deals with this feature, the core nature of a relationship is much more profound. The etymology of the word ‘ relation ’ comes from the Latin word ‘ relatus ’ which means to bring back or restore to a former state. The word ‘ -ship ’ comes from the base word ‘ scip ’ which means a condition of being. So if we combine the meaning of the compound word ‘relation-ship’ we would derived a definition which reads: to bring back or restore to a former state or condition of being.
If that definition holds true, then that means that the innate human desire to bond and connect is the consequence of one searching to be restored back to their former state or condition of being. The question then becomes, what state or condition of being are we seeking to be restored to? Is there a Biblical Principle that supports this idea of relationship? Well in order to find out we must examine the first human relationship established; that is the relationship between Adam and Eve.
According to the Biblical record, Eve was the product of a rib extracted from Adam.
Genesis 2:22 Then the rib which the LORD God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man.
Prior to Eve’s entry into existence, Adam possessed this rib as part of his original form. Once Eve was to be brought into existence the rib from which she was formed was extracted from Adam. Thus Adam had been altered as a consequence of this and his state of being was no longer in accordance to his original form ( his state of being prior to the rib being extracted ). Adam being aware of this looks upon Eve and says:
Genesis 2:23 This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called woman because she was taken out of man.
This is a very interesting yet profound assessment. Adam looks upon Eve and declares her as being the bone of his bones and the flesh of his flesh. The question is why? Well its very simple, the only way for Adam to be restored back to his original form or state of being is for him to cleave to Eve; for she possesses in her an attribute missing in him. Thus he is incomplete lest he is united with her as one. What’s even more profound is the statement which follows:
Genesis 2:24 Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.
The word ‘ therefore ’ in this passage is the Hebrew word ‘ Ken ’ which means on this ground. The question then becomes, on which grounds? On the grounds of Genesis 2:23; the previous verse. You see, on the grounds of a man seeking to be restored back to his original state or condition of being shall he leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife and the two shall become one.
This tells me that every man was born with a missing attribute necessary to complete him. His Eve or the one to whom he is to be married, will possess in her his missing attributes. God has done this so that when the man sees her he would desire her, for he would see in her a feature missing in him; thus he will pursue. In this regard, the original state or condition of being that he is seeking to be restored to is the will of God. For Eve was designed as a helper for Adam to assist him in his stewardship of God’s will. Man’s original state of being was to perform and execute the will of God, therefore the only way for man to find true and authentic restoration is by functioning in the will of God. In this regard, the human relationship between a man and a woman will hinge upon this critical component. The foundation of how the two relate or restore each other will rest upon the clear council of the will of God.
Often we buy into the world’s definition of relationship which says it is about attractive qualities and certain personality traits. While this bears some weight in a superficial sense, it cannot eclipse the reality of the true purpose of a relationship which God himself has established; that is, restoration. While we become captured in the glamor of external appeal we miss the most critical key in our journey of seeking to be restored, that is, the will of God.
Every relationship that does not incorporate the necessary feature of God’s purpose will produce the opposite effect of restoration and will in fact take away from rather than build up. This is evident in the Biblical accounts of Samson and Delilah, Solomon and his many wives, David and Bathsheba, etc. And is a clear indication that relationships such as these are not authentic and do not possess the inherent characteristics of meaning and purpose concerning God’s will. Relationships of this type eventually fall apart because it lacks a stable foundation.
What has God called you into existence to perform? The answer to that question will make clear the course you are to take in establishing a viable relationship. Ultimately the one designed for you will assist you in this purpose and vice versa. So that through your union, both you and your partner are being restored to man’s original state and condition of being, that is to perform God’s will.
In the past I have witness many of my contemporaries miss God in this critical area. Some of their relationships has ended in bitter divorce, while others feel as though they are locked inside of an emotionally distressed prison. While I sympathize with those who suffer in this regard the Truth of the matter still remains; we cannot bargain with the will of God. Either we receive His will or we suffer, the choice of course is ours.