I have learned much about having a better marriage through understanding a husband's loving headship and a wife's way of serving God by respectfully helping her husband. However, as a woman, I am still wondering about the origin of subordination. As far as I have come to understand, there are two competing views. 1) In the beginning, God made the woman when Adam realized that all the animals had a fitting counterpart while he was all alone. He made her to make Adam happy, to be his companion through life, to overcome loneliness and have children. This does not necessarily mean that she was less than Adam, since having him also made her happy and gave her a counterpart, too. 2) Two arguments are brought forth: Paul says "Adam was made first" (1 Tim 2,13), thus making it clear that there must be some special value attached to men, since Adam was made "just like that," for man to be made, while Eve was made for Adam, as some kind of accessory. Thus, men must be worth more than women in some way at least. The wife has been made for the sake of the husband, which proves that God had some kind of subordination in mind from the very beginning and women are somewhat second class (even though God loves them and Christ has fully redeemed them as sinners). Which side is right? I would very much appreciate a theologically sound answer.
The first view is closer to the truth of Scripture. It is clear from the Bible that men and women are equal in God’s eyes: “So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise” (Galatians 3:26-28). There are no second class citizens in God’s kingdom; all members—male and female—of God’s kingdom are kings and priests in his sight (1 Peter 2:9; Revelation 1:6). The different and complementary roles and callings that God has given to men and women do not negate their equality before God.
The best thing I could do is to suggest further reading on this subject. This link will take you a doctrinal statement of our church body on the scriptural principles of man and woman roles. This next link will provide you with a study titled Man and Woman in God’s World. These documents will provide you with theologically sound answers to your questions and concerns.