Eve, Holiness, and Fire

Women are created as and designed to be holy beings

Photo by Joshua Newton on Unsplash

She shall be called woman, because she was taken out of man.” Genesis 2:23

Rabbi Halevi noted that in this verse, the Hebrew word that was used for man is not adam. For the first time in the Torah, the Hebrew word used is ish.“Up to this point in Scripture,” writes Halevi, “man, adam, and mankind are consistently represented by the word adam.”

Both Hebrew words ish and adam (or ’adam) are used generically and interchangeably, mostly as man or humankind. But there is a much different level to the pronoun ish than ’adam.

The pronoun ’adam is often associated with the earth or dirt. He is at a lower level than Heavenly Father, (or Man of Holiness as He is also referred to.) In Strong’s Hebrew Lexicon ’adam refers to a man of lower degree.

So what happens when the Hebrew word/pronoun ish is used? How does that change the meaning? When ish is used it refers to a man of high degree: such as a prophet, priest, royal officials, etc..

Even a man of wisdom.

“[These men] are always called ish — never ’adam,” writes Halevi.

Ish is a man who has an elevated status, quite often holy.

Do you want to know something else very interesting? This word is also closely associated with esh, the Hebrew word for holy fire.

So now we’ve defined the difference between a man of lower status and a man of higher status, at least in context to the holy Scriptures.

But what about Eve?

It begins with the title that Adam addresses his new wife. As she was created from his flesh he could have easily named her Adamah, which is merely the feminine counterpart to his own name.

Let’s reiterate here, Adam did not name Eve, he called her by a title he was already familiar with.

Adam uses a title of great honor.


Since we have just defined ish as an elevated man, we can see how Adam viewed this new creation, this woman, that Heavenly Father — a Man of Holiness — is introducing to him, and is asked by Heavenly Father that he, Adam, arise in her presence.

Ish has an allusion to holy fire. So with Eve, an Ishah, she also has a direct allusion to this holy fire.

Photo by Siddharth Salve on Unsplash

With that in mind, can you now see through Adam’s eyes? Can you now see a small glimmer of Eve’s character, as THE Man of Holiness has created her?

As we have discussed, ish can mean various elevated levels of man: wise man, the divine being, or even God.There is another meaning for ish in the Scriptures, an elevated man who was never, ever labeled merely ’adam.

A man who marries a woman.


Interesting enough, a woman’s ish is translated as husband.Can we see how enlightening and empowering this is?

When an ’adam— a male — marries a woman —  an ishah — his status is immediately elevated.

“[An ’adam becomes] a man of higher degree. He becomes more like the Divine Being in whose his image he was created.” (Shira Halevi)

This brings more clarity to Gordon B. Hinckley’s declaration:

“His [God’s] final creation, the crowning of his glorious work . . . His masterpiece after all that had gone before, the final work before He rested from his labors.”

What Adam sees

Adam, soon to become ish, stands before an ishah, one who has been created already with an elevated status; a creation that, when Adam is first introduced, automatically refers to her as one who reminds him of holy fire.

With Eve, the mother of all living, he is able to do that which he could not do without her, that which is the “most godlike activity available to human beings — create life.”

Women bring men life.

The mission of man — Adam — could not be accomplished, nor could he experience the fullness of his own creation, without a companion that was holy.

Can we now see with these words, heavily weighted with symbolism, that the creation of Eve, the woman, is a gift? As it is shown, being of an elevated status, is needed for the completion, perfection, and growth — not only for Adam, the man, but for all humanity.

You can read more about the divinity of women in my book, “We are Adam: the Partnership of Adam and Eve in the Garden and what it Means for You”, available at Amazon and Cedar Fort.

This blog post can also be found at Medium.com

You can also listen to the podcast episode that coincides with this post at Buzzsprout

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