Paul, the apostle, urged “older women to train the young women to love their children” (Titus 2:3, 4). Of course, motherhood has become complicated, marginalized, scandalized or romanticized in our confused culture. The foundation of the family began in the Garden. Eve was “the mother of all living” (Genesis 3:20). “Eve” is more of a title than a name, meaning life and life-giver. Even though Eve had not yet birthed a child, the prediction in Genesis 2:24 is that “a man shall leave his father and his mother and will hold fast to his wife.”
Biblical motherhood flows out of the marriage relationship and is a picture of God’s grace for mankind. When Eve was named, she and Adam had just heard God’s judgement against Satan (Genesis 3:14, 15). They sought to hide themselves after disobeying God in the Garden concerning eating “of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil” (Genesis 2:17). The Lord’s gift of her to the man and he to her was indicating the ongoing promise of the human race. Though sin entered into the world by the deception and temptation of Satan, God offered hope and mercy. Satan came in the guise of the serpent, his name was “shining one” (perhaps the most glorious of all of God’s creatures in Heaven, originally). In calling her life-giver, or mother, there is the hope that promised the victorious Deliverer would come (Genesis 3:15).
I praise the Lord that He fulfilled Psalm 113:9 in my wife, Janet, by “making her the joyous mother of children.” I also praise the Lord that all of my children love the Lord and share the life of Jesus with those inside and outside their homes. I am also grateful that they “honor their father and mother.”
While adulthood ushers us into a new relationship with our parents, since we are no longer under their authority, the command to honor them remains. According to scriptural promise, it will not go well with us or our children if the infection of dishonor invades our homes (Exodus 20:12). May we pray that all of our mothers will not just give birth, but life in every relationship and ministry that God entrusts to their care. May all of us fulfill Paul’s words in 1 Thessalonians 2: “We were gentle among you, like a nursing mother taking care of her own children. We were ready to share with you not only the Gospel of God, but also our own selves, because you have become very dear to us.”