Verse 33. "Nevertheless" - plhn? Moreover, or therefore, on the consideration of God's design in the institution of marriage, let every one of you love his wife as himself, because she is both naturally and by a Divine ordinance a part of himself.
"That she reverence her husband." - Let the wife ever consider the husband as her head, and this he is, not only by nature, but also by the ordinance of God. These are very important matters, and on them the apostle lays great stress. See the following observations.
THERE is one subject in the preceding verse on which I could not enlarge sufficiently in the notes, and which I have reserved for this place; viz.
what the apostle says concerning the mystery of marriage, which certainly has a deeper meaning than what is generally apprehended. Dr. Macknight has some good observations on this part of the subject, which I shall beg leave to lay before my readers.
1. "The apostle calls the formation of Eve from Adam's body, his marriage with her; and the intimate union established between them by that marriage, a great mystery, because it contained an important emblematical meaning concerning the regeneration of believers, and their union with Christ, which hitherto had been kept secret, but which he had discovered in the 30th verse. For there, in allusion to what Adam said concerning Eve, 'This now is bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh,' the apostle says, concerning Christ and believers: We are bone of his bones, and flesh of his flesh: that is, we are parts of his body, the Church. And by this application of Adam's words concerning Eve to Christ and to his Church, he intimates, First, That the formation of Eve of a rib taken out of Adam's body was a figure of the regeneration of believers by the breaking of Christ's body, mentioned ver. 25.
Secondly, That Adam's love to Eve, on account of her being formed of his body, was a figure of Christ's love to believers because they are become his body, ver. 30. Thirdly, That Adam's marriage with Eve was a figure of the eternal union of Christ with believers in heaven, mentioned ver. 27. For he left his Father to be united to his Church.
2. "In giving this emblematical representation of these ancient facts, the apostle has not exceeded the bounds of probability. In the first age, neither the art of writing, nor any permanent method of conveying instruction, being invented, it was necessary to make such striking actions and events as could not easily be forgotten emblems of the instruction meant to be perpetuated. On this supposition, Adam, in whom the human race began, was a natural image of Christ, in whom the human race was to be restored; and his deep sleep, the opening of his side, and the formation of Eve of a rib taken out of his side, were fit emblems of Christ's death, of the opening of his side on the cross, and of the regeneration of believers by his death. The love which Adam expressed towards Eve, and his union with her by marriage, were lively images of Christ's love to believers, and of his eternal union with them in one society after their resurrection; and Eve herself, who was formed of a rib taken from Adam's side, was a natural image of believers, who are regenerated, both in their body and in their mind, by the breaking of Christ's side on the cross. Thus, the circumstances which accompanied the formation of Eve being fit emblems of the formation of the Church, we may suppose they were brought to pass to prefigure that great event; and, by prefiguring it, to show that it was decreed of God from the very beginning.
3. "The aptness, however, of these images is not the only reason for supposing that the formation of Eve, and her marriage with Adam in paradise, were emblems of the regeneration of believers by the death of Christ, and of their eternal union with him in heaven. The singular manner in which Eve was formed, and the declaration at her marriage with Adam, 'Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and cleave unto his wife, and they shall be one flesh,' strongly lead to that conclusion. Eve was not formed of the dust of the earth, as all other living things were made, (not excepting Adam himself,) but of a rib taken from Adam's side while he was in a deep sleep. Now, for this diversity, what reason can be assigned, if that which the apostle hath suggested is not admitted? Farther: unless some deep instruction were couched under the formation of Eve, what occasion was there for Adam, at his marriage with her, to declare, 'This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called woman, because she was taken out of man: therefore shall a man leave,' &c.? For although the taking of Eve out of Adam might be a reason for Adam's affection towards her, it was no reason for the affection of his posterity towards their wives, who were not so formed. The reason of their