I’m glad you found some value in the response I gave @Namia. I’m very sorry if you’ve been made to feel less than because of being a woman according to the story of Adam and Eve, or any part of the Bible for that matter.
After reading your additional remarks here, this issue has grown on me. As a husband to a Godly woman who wrestled with some of the same questions about her role as a woman in God’s eyes, and as father to a little girl (and no sons,) I have a huge heart for women understanding how fearfully and wonderfully made they are in the image of God. And it would be my heart for you, just like it is for my own daughter, to come to know God’s love for you and just how valuable that you are in His eyes that He would send His only Son for you so that you — a woman — would have everlasting life.
So let me offer some remarks that I have shared in my own home on this issue, as I have studied it with a personal interest to make sure I can shephard my own daughter’s heart in the right direction. Again, it all comes back to God’s Word, which is a lamp to the path along which the feet should walk (Psalm 119:105).
Firstly, I find it so relieving and helpful to keep in mind that Jesus, when tempted by Satan himself, responded to every accusation/temptation with Scripture (Luke 4:4) citing Deuteronomy 8:3 that “man lives by every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord”. He always leaned on the Word of God as the truth to rebuke false ideas that the devil (and others) tried to propose, e.g., “if you are the Son of God…” (Luke 4:3). One of the tactics that the devil will try to use against us is to accuse us of misunderstanding God’s heart as revealed in His Word. Just like he did with Eve, asking “did God really say…” (Genesis 3:1,) Satan will accuse us in our own lives, e.g., did God really say you were equally created in His image like men? or something far worse that puts our identity as a loved child of God in question and can shake us if we do not have God’s Word stored up in our hearts (Psalm 119:11).
One verse related to the Adam and Eve story, which I would recommend you study and store up in your heart, is related to what @jlyons alluded to: Genesis 3:15. This verse depicts God speaking directly to the serpent and Eve after that original act of deceit and sin. God says… ‘I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel” (emphasis mine). Notice that the one who God says will harm the serpent is the woman. That is crucial for what seems to be your hearts longing, if I may be so bold to paraphrase you here, to know your role as a woman in God’s story. And from the very beginning, though the woman fell for the devil’s deceit, God promised that it would be the woman (notice he didn’t say Adam’s heel would bruise the serpent’s head) who ultimately had the role in the defeat of Satan, and that comes through her offspring, namely Jesus. We see this imagery repeated in Revelation 12:1-6. And that is something you can look for throughout Scripture, the role that women have in God’s story of redemption. Ruth, Naomi, Deborah, Esther, Mary (the birth mother of Jesus)…all of these women in the Bible had a crucial role to play in the work leading up to Jesus’ atoning death on the cross for the world. And you see key female figures mentioned in the genealogies of Jesus in Matthew 1:1-17 and Luke 3:23-28. That’s no coincidence in a culture that was patriarchal; one where women’s testimony was not permissible in a court of law; one in which primogeniture (passing the right of succession and estate to the firstborn male child), was a most powerful cultural tradition. For all the signs that are in the Bible that show a male-favored society, you will see that God regularly flips the paradigm against the world. He chose Abel, not Cain (first born son); God chose Jacob, not Esau (first born son); and perhaps most directly to your point about going against the grain of perceived women’s roles, would be Luke 10:38-42, where Jesus does not conform to the misguided societal/cultural gender norm of saying that a woman’s place is in the kitchen. Instead, He pulls Martha out of the kitchen and calls her to join Him at His feet, which was the place where disciples/students of a Rabbi would sit to learn from them (a place typically reserved only for men.) Here is how that story unfolds, and I hope it is an encouragement to you to see that what Jesus calls women into flips the system upside down from what the Bible at times showed as the practice and tradition of people to subvert the equality of women:
Now as they went on their way, Jesus entered a village. And a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teaching. But Martha was distracted with much serving. And she went up to him and said, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me.” But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.”
One thing this passage illustrates is how ingrained the perceived gender roles were at that time, even to women, that Martha would complain about her own sister not living in that presumptive role. And Jesus responds in a striking way, telling Martha she is worried about the wrong things. Basically, when it boils down to the way of the world and the way of God, the thing that is most important is being connected with Jesus.
Let me underscore this: your role is important as a woman, and the Bible does make that clear. But what can cloud that message is that while the Bible is God’s Word, it does contain stories of fallen humans and their fallen behavior (both women and men) and so a study of Scripture must come with a prayer for discernment of what is a command or directive of God and what is a narrative of the actions of fallen human beings. If anyone tries to tell you differently, then they haven’t studied Scripture well enough, because there is no Biblical basis for inequality according to the sexes. In fact, the Biblical worldview is the only one that offers women equality in the imago Dei. If you explore other religions, you will see that they do not view men and women as equals like followers of Christ do. Does that mean we are designed for the exact same tasks on this earth? No. But we are designed to complement one another, such that it wasn’t good for man to be alone (Genesis 2:18) and so woman was created, because man alone is not enough. That is why Jesus affirms this complementarian view in Matthew 19:4-5.
Women aren’t here to serve men; they’re here to serve God alongside men. And while that might look different for men and women to do according to the strengths of their design, it makes neither role no less important.
As one last resource here, I found this talk by @Jo_Vitale to be very very helpful on this exact issue. Check it out when you have a chance. You also might find some other voices in the following Connect forum helpful as well: My Question: How Bible view women’s role
For what this is all worth, you have to start by looking at the person of Jesus Christ and work outward from there. Start with John’s gospel and ask God to speak to your heart through it. I firmly believe that the more you study God’s Word the more you will see that the Bible is good news for women, far more than some people might credit it to be.
Thanks for reading, and sharing honestly where you’re at with all of this. I pray that these ideas we’ve all shared here will be a blessing to you and draw you closer to the God who sees you and calls you by name.