The Only Bad Thing in the Universe

After the six days of creation, everything in the whole universe was very good, except for one thing.


PublicationsOct 12, 2017

PublicationsOct 12, 2017


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God declared everything he created to be good. After completing the heavens and the earth, he looked over the sweeping expanses of time and space, “and behold, it was very good” (Genesis 1:31). The only thing in creation that God declared to be “not good” was man’s loneliness. Then the LORD God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him” (Genesis 2:18).

Adam Loves Eve, the new book from First Fruits of Zion, explores the relationship between Adam and the "helper fit for him" that God provided.

No suitable partner could be found for the man among all the creatures of creation. Despite his innocence, his capacity for fellowship with God, and all the pleasures of Eden, man experienced an inconsolable loneliness. He sought a partner. That’s the way God made him. The Almighty hardwired the desire for companionship into human beings.

The Hebrew behind the term “a helper fit for him” (ezer kenegdo) literally translates as “a helper opposite him.” The Talmud explains why the Torah calls a man's wife his helper “opposite” him:

If man is worthy, the woman will be a helper. If he is unworthy, she will oppose him. (b.Yevamot 63a)

This means that a man’s wife functions as a spiritual barometer. The closer he walks with God, the closer she will want to draw to him. The further he walks away from God, the more repulsive he will appear to her.

Judaism teaches that God selects a man’s wife for him. There are no accidents or mismatches. God selected exactly the one woman in the whole earth that a husband needs for the sake of his soul and his mission on earth. God knows what we need, and he makes no mistakes. The psalmist says, “From where does my help come? My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth” (Psalm 121:1-2). By way of creative application, a husband can read this to refer to his wife, his “suitable helper.” A married man should read the psalm to say, “From where does my wife come? My wife comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth.”

It’s not good for man to be alone because a married man receives extra favor and grace from the LORD: “He who finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains favor from the LORD” (Proverbs 18:22). The Talmud echoes the same sentiment:

Any man who has no wife lives without joy, without blessing, and without goodness. “Without joy,” for it is written [in Deuteronomy 14:26], “And you shall rejoice, you and your household.” “Without blessing,” for it is written [in Ezekiel 44:30], “So that a blessing may rest on your household.” “Without goodness,” for it is written [in Genesis 2:18], “It is not good that the man should be alone.” (b.Yevamot 62b)

This teaching states that God gladdens men, blesses husbands, and bestows his goodness on them through their wives and on account of our wives. This does not mean that a single person has no joy, blessing, or goodness. All those things come to us through our relationship with God by means of his Son. But the married man experiences a certain quality of joy, blessing, and goodness that the single person cannot because these are gifts of God that can only come to a man through his wife. That’s why it’s not good for man to be alone.

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About the Author: D. Thomas Lancaster is Director of Education at First Fruits of Zion, the author of the Torah Club programs and several books and study programs. He is also the pastor of Beth Immanuel Sabbath Fellowship in Hudson, WI. More articles by D. Thomas Lancaster

Related Resource

Adam Loves Eve

This is a book for men only—specifically followers of Yeshua, especially if they are married men, and especially if they are finding marriage to be perplexing and more difficult than they expected. This is a book about how God’s instructions in the Bible can make a man’s marriage better.