As God brought the animals to Adam to be named, He brought them two by two, male and female. Adam became acutely aware of his own loneliness. The hand behind the pen of the biblical text adds a meta-comment at this point and says, “…but for the man no helper was found as his complement” (Genesis 2:20 in the Holman Christian Standard Bible). God then took “from the side” (literally) of the man and created the appropriate partner for man. Adam, having become an expert at naming, decided to call her “ishah” (woman) because she is from “ish” man. Even the names are complementary! The marriage ceremony that follows was conducted in the presence of God before every living creature and every human being alive at the time. The New Testament talks about descendants existing in the “loins of Adam.” Some argue that this implies the wedding ceremony was performed before every human being ever to be born as well.

God proclaims truths in His created order. That’s what Paul was getting at in Romans when he said, “…what can be known about God’s plan and purpose is evident…because God has revealed it to us. For His creative genius and heavenly intentions for mankind have been clearly seen since the creation of the world, being understood through what He has made.” (Romans 1:19-20: my own very loose paraphrase). The created order, design, of man and woman is purposeful. We were made for each other in very specific ways. We are “complementary” in many ways. I’m not saying that this is a perfectly observed phenomena that’s without any flaws, the fall of man have impacted everything, but for the most part God’s design holds true. We are spiritually, emotionally, and of course, physically complementary.

She was exactly what Adam needed, and in God’s sovereign foreknowledge and omniscience, Adam was the complement to all he’d make in Eve as well. Thus intimacy was an obvious plan and purpose of God in creating them male and female. Looking at the physical form of male and female makes it clear that God had an intended purpose. But the bond holding ish and ishah together is more than physical. It’s uniquely spiritual also. One commentator says, “The marriage union engulfs every aspect of life—emotions, intellect, body, personality, likes and dislikes, worship, service, private life, and public life. All such things are shared by husband and wife. The two become one in an inexplicably intimate way. That is God’s design for marriage.”