On the compegal blog Paula has quoted from God’s Word to Women by Katherine Bushnell. I won’t recap the discussion here, but I want to throw a pebble in the pond, so to speak. Bushnell mentions the history of the word teshuqa in Gen. 3:16. What was teshuqa in the curse of Eve? Some bloggers have watched in utter befuddlement as this issue is discussed at great length.
For the record, here are a few variations on a theme,
- καὶ πρὸς τὸν ἄνδρα σου ἡ ἀποστροφή σου LXX
and to your husband your turning*
et sub viri potestate eris Vulgate
and under the power of the husband you will be
ad virum tuum eris desiderium* tuum Pagnini
towards your husband will be your longing
and thy lust shal pertayne vnto yi hußbande Coverdale
and thy desire shal be subiect to thine husbande, Geneva
and thy desire shall be to thy husband, KJV
and thou shalt be under thy husband’s power, D-R
et te soumettras à ton mari, Olivétan (Calvin)
and you will submit to your husband
Your desire shall be for[a] your husband ESV
(a) or against
These are the major variations as I know it. Here is the complementarian interpretation.
- Eve would now rebel against the God-given authority of her husband
I have been exploring a new interlinear Septuagint here. In contrast, it translates apostrophe as “submission”
- and to your husband your submission
So the curse of Eve can be either “submission to” or “rebellion against” male authority or anything else mentioned above.
No problem, Biblical interpretation is a free for all. However, I did want to share this with Paula, and Molly, so they know that there are not 2000 years of straight teaching about women rebelling.
In fact, history shows that biblical interpretation was and is a lot more varied and humane than that.
Historically the theories have included these ideas, that the curse of Eve is that she is under the power of her husband, or that she desires her husband even though her chances of dying in childbirth are considerable, or that she longs for her husband as one longs for something that one has lost. I think you get the message. These interpretations were for the most part initiated by men, and betray, to my mind, a fellow human feeling.
If the curse of man is that the ground is hard to till, then ask yourself how many women worldwide share that curse? More than a few. And so how many men share the curse of Eve, the longing for something lost?
* ἀποστροφή – turning away, however, explicitly “towards the husband”, (Is it a turning away from God to the husband?)
* desiderium – a longing, ardent desire or wish, properly for something once possessed; grief, regret for the absence or loss of any thing.
PS If you want to know what teshuqa really means, ask John.