We read the text of Genesis 2 and then students started asking several questions.
Is Eve really made out of a rib?
Why did God command Adam not to partake of the fruit?
This chapter has much to offer the youth in way of application to their lives. I focused on a couple of points in the lesson centered on Genesis 2. We examined the Lord mentioning that he created Eve from a rib taken from Adam. (Genesis 221-22)
Elder Nelson stated:
When Eve was created—when her body was made by God—Adam exclaimed, “Bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of man” (Moses 3:23).
From the rib of Adam, Eve was formed… The rib signifies neither dominion nor subservience, but a lateral relationship as partners, to work and to live, side by side. (Elder Russell M. Nelson, Lessons from Eve, Ensign November 1987. See also: http://bit.ly/nHYInL )
From President Kimball: The role of woman was fixed even before she was created, and God is the same yesterday, today, and forever. It is written: “And I, God, created man in mine own image, in the image of mine Only Begotten created I him; male and female created I them. [The story of the rib, of course, is figurative.] (President Kimball, The Blessings and Responsibilities of Motherhood, Ensign, April 1975 see also: http://bit.ly/oen7LM )
The point is that Eve was created (figuratively) from the rib to prove a point. Adam was not beneath, nor was he above her. They were to work equally, side by side, in providing a place for Heavenly Father’s children to come to earth. Eve came from the rib, which is next to Adam’s heart. She is to occupy the first place in his life – to be next to his heart and the center of his affections and desires. She is under his arm, denoting her place with regard to what he is to protect. She is in fact, to literally be “under his wing”.
I asked the young men in the class how they should treat the young women they know based on the instruction in this chapter. It would appear as if right from the start that the Lord is teaching us about our roles as men and women. According to the proclamation to the world on the family, “By divine design, fathers are to preside over their families in love and righteousness and are responsible to provide the necessities of life and protection for their families. Mothers are primarily responsible for the nurture of their children. In these sacred responsibilities, fathers and mothers are obligated to help one another as equal partners.” (The Family: A Proclamation to the World. See also :http://bit.ly/PsHf1)
It was good to see the roles established in the very beginning of Genesis. Modern prophets and ancient scripture both declare the same message. We spent some time discussing ways we could apply this teaching in our everyday lives. How the young men treat young women, girls and children matters. We are to be protectors in a society that demeans these individuals.
The concept of nakedness is also discussed in this scriptural account. We cannot hide from the Lord. Adam and Eve learned right away that this is impossible. He sees us as we really are. So too must our spouse – they must see us without any pretense or secrets. It is wise to live our lives so that we would not hide in shame from the one we are to take with us through mortality and into eternity. I encouraged the young people to make decisions in their lives that would enable them to not want to hide from the ones that they will one day love.