What Does Genesis 3:16 Mean

By: Rev. Sam Harris; ©1999
Does this verse mean a woman will have “control over her husband”?

What does Genesis 3:16 Mean?


Does Genesis 3:16 mean a woman will have “control over her husband”?


A lady writes concerning a portion of Genesis 3:16: “Your desire will be for your hus­band.” Her husband thinks that this means she will desire to “control her husband or put a ring in his nose, and yet she believes that even though she goes through considerable pain in childbirth, she will still want physical intimacy with her husband….”

There was a key word left out of the Scripture quoted. Reading in the New American Standard Version we find these words: “To the woman He [God] said: ‘I will greatly multiply your pain in childbirth, in your pain you shall bring forth children; yet your desire shall be for your husband….’”

That little word “yet” is important because, in spite of the pain of childbirth, a woman still wants and desires an intimate and loving relationship with her husband which is part of God’s eternal plan. There is no biblical evidence that this means she is to control her husband—not here or in any other part of Scripture.

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