Learning to thrive in the new life Jesus offers us – 2 Corinthians 5:16-17

The Virgin Mary Consoles Eve

The Virgin Mary Consoles Eve

Virgin Mary and Eve
Crayon & pencil drawing by Sr. Grace Remington, OCSO
© 2005, Sisters of the Mississippi Abbey. Used with permission from the artist.

I just love this picture. The image is powerful. Just look at their feet (Gen. 3:15)!

Several early church theologians saw Mary as the antithesis of Eve, and the antidote to Eve’s sin. Even though Adam and Eve both ate the forbidden fruit and both were culpable of sin, early church theologians emphasized Eve’s doubt, disobedience and pride as being instrumental in bringing sin into the world. Conversely, they highlighted Mary’s faith, obedience and humility as being instrumental in bringing salvation into the world.

While the comparison of Eve and Mary is interesting, it should not be pushed too far. What we do know for certain is that Mary’s son Jesus would die sacrificially on our behalf. Through his death and resurrection, it is Jesus who mortally wounded the serpent (Gen. 3:15). It is Jesus who has redeemed both men and women, potentially freeing us from the power of sin and death and the debilitating consequences of the Fall (cf. 1 Cor. 15:56-57).

In the picture above, Mary is a messenger and the message is all about who is in her belly.

You can purchase this drawing online at the Monastery Candy store here.
You can also buy Christmas cards with this picture and a poem (for next year?), plus other goodies, from the Monastery Candy Store.


Related Articles

The Virgin Mary
Blaming Eve Alone
Women, Eve, and Deception
Is Adam solely responsible for the first sin?
Other articles about “Gender in Genesis 1-3
Articles on Christmas

Posted December 24th, 2014 . Categories/Tags: Christian Theology, Equality and Gender Issues, Gender in Genesis 1-3, Salvation and Eternal Life, , ,

Unkind, judgemental, bizarre, and off-topic comments will be deleted.

16 comments on “The Virgin Mary Consoles Eve

  1. Geoff says:

    Powerful and beautiful

  2. Kristen says:

    That’s so cool! Another interesting comparison has been made for Easter, with Mary Magdalene in the garden being the opposite of Eve in the Garden.

    • Marg says:

      It’s an interesting comparison. It would be more compelling perhaps if the same Greek word was used in both Genesis 2:8-17 (paradeisos) and John 19:41 (kēpos).

  3. David says:

    Interesting – but unfortunately not theologically correct. The referenced verse is speaking of Jesus not Mary .. Would be more apropos if Jesus was consoling Eve.

    • Marg says:

      Hi David,

      The focus of the picture is on Mary’s belly. It is her child who is the Saviour who bruises the serpent’s head. It is the hoped for seed of the woman who removes Eve’s shame and guilt, and ours.

      The image is not biblically correct, in that there is no Bible story about Mary consoling Eve, but I think there’s enough good theology symbolised in the artwork for me to appreciate the theology. Art is often symbolic rather than factual in what it portrays. However, I think the artist has symbolised the prophecy of the seed of the woman bruising the serpent’s head quite well.

      My accompanying blurb makes it clear who the Saviour is. Nevertheless, Mary played a vital role in bringing Salvation into the world, and I think it is fine that she is the spokesperson and prophet for this Salvation in this image. I think the picture is profound.

      • Jo says:

        First you say the image is not biblically correct, and then you say the picture is “profound”. Sorry….. I don’t think it can be both.

        • Marg says:

          Hi Jo,

          There is no biblical story of the person of Mary, or the person of the incarnate Jesus, meeting and consoling Eve, but there certainly is both the biblical and theological concept of the seed of the woman bruising the serpent’s head.

          This image clearly points to the seed of the woman. Both women in the image have their hands on Mary’s pregnant belly. Mary’s symbolic stance is prophetic and profound. It does not take away from the fact that it is Jesus who is the one who mortally wounds the serpent. Rather, this artwork highlights this fact. Mary’s stance also highlights that she, Eve, and each of us, have victory through Jesus (1 Cor. 15:56-57).

          • Jawan says:

            Marg – I totally “get” this picture and understand exactly what it means. The gospel changes hearts and this picture reminds me of Genesis 3 – thank you for posting it and for giving credit to the artist for such imagery!

    • Jo says:

      I agree with you, David. Interesting, but not theologically correct. It’s way too much of a stretch.

  4. melanie says:

    Adam would be excited to have two wives, but the Lord won’t allow it.
    Adam:”Awesome I got two wives”
    God:”Adam you only get one wife”
    God took Mary away (she won’t exist until thousands of years later)
    Adam: Oh! Come on.

    • Marg says:

      Hi Melanie, I honestly can’t see how your comment relates to the image.

      I know you mean it as a joke; sorry if I don’t get.

      I am fairly certain that Adam and Eve had a profound unity (Gen. 2:21-25), even if it was marred by the Fall. He would not have wanted another wife.

  5. […] The two obvious adversaries in Genesis 3 are the cursed serpent, who will be an enemy especially of the woman and her seed (Gen. 3:15), and the cursed ground (adamah), which will produce thorns and thistles and make life especially hard for Adam (Gen. 3:17-19). The seed of the woman, will mortally wound the serpent and triumph, despite injury, and Adam will consume the produce of the land, despite hardships. Nevertheless, adam will ultimately return to the ground (adamah) (cf. Gen. 2:7). […]

  6. […] The Virgin Mary Consoles Eve […]

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