The Garden of Eden

garden

Have you ever wondered what it must have been like for Adam and Eve, in the Garden of Eden, before their fall?

We’re talking total dependency and reliance on God for literally everything. And, they had the ability to walk and talk with God. That’s the part that really gets me. They literally got to be in His presence. No curse on creation, no sin nature, no death, no sorrow or suffering, no tears, no regrets. Everytime that I think of this I am reminded of how Jesus told us as it’s recorded in Matthew 18:3 NIV “And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” I think this is supposed to help us understand that our sufficiency in everything is provided in God and that the essence of innocence, where God’s thoughts and ways are accepted, without reservation, as automatically being the right thing to do.

Another thing that crossed my mind is that there would not be the constant bombardment of negativity and deceptive information coming into our minds and our self awareness would be without malice or harmful or deceitful intent towards others. I don’t know about you but I could really willingly move into something like that.

I know there are many who question the reality of Adam and Eve and the Garden of Eden. That shouldn’t really surprise us because there are also many who question the reality of a Creator God. And there continues to be all kinds of speculation and research being done with regard to tracing the roots of our human DNA. The short story is our species obviously had a beginning. God provides us with His overview on what transpired and humanity will eventually come to accept His overview as plausible or reject it. From what I’ve read, the door has not been shut on the plausibility of God’s overview. You can find interesting research that has and is being done under “Adam and Eve” on my “Christian Resources” page if you are interested.

The Bible doesn’t actually tell us how long Adam and Eve remained in this state of innocence, only that it ended when they, who were created in God’s own image, decided to basically think for themselves or make their own decisions with regard to what was acceptable or what was not (morally right and morally wrong). And none of what transpired took God by surprise, He knew what would happen and He knew how what had been offered, would be restored to those who chose to look to Him and most importantly, through whom. The whom of course is the promised Redeemer, the Messiah, Jesus. Right from the very beginning, before the earth was even made.(Ephesians 1:3-4 NIV)

The part of this narrative that God presents to us, that resonates with all that I am, is the reality of my mind and the reality of my soul. That being my consciousness of self and the battle that continues within to this very day. There was of course, a time when my mind and soul were totally lost, where I was aware that I existed but the course that I chose to follow with my mind did little to bring about the goals that my mind desired and virtually nothing to satisfy the inner emptiness or non-fulfillment of my soul.

That’s what happens when we are seperated from our Creator God. We are His creation but we are lost, like a child with no parents and no one to guide or sustain us when it comes to spiritual realities. The new birth that Jesus talks about where we are literally born again in John 3:3 NIV has to do with our soul or spirit. This is where faith in Jesus as the Son of God, and what He has accomplished on our behalf on the cross, brings about a rebirth of our soul or spirit in that God’s Spirit is joined, from Him, to our soul or spirit again. That’s what Adam and Eve had, that union with God’s Spirit, in their soul or spirit, prior to the fall. And as God had warned them, in the day that they chose of their own will, to go it on their own, by eating the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge, that union between God’s Spirit and their soul or spirit, was broken and that union died. Genesis 2:17 NIV Of course, Adam and Eve did eat of the Tree of Knowledge but they did not physically die that day, but their soul or spirit’s union with God did die, that very day.

The older that I get, the more clear it is in my mind and in my soul, as a Christian, of the difference between what my mind wants and what my soul needs. My mind can in fact be renewed where my thinking is changed and this is indeed a progressive experience. Studying God’s Word and prayer, not to mention, life experiences where we sometimes succeed and sometimes fail, plays a large part in the renewing of our minds. This is not a one hour a week Sunday service that I’m talking about here, this is a daily walk where literally everything that comes across our plate is filtered and responded to, in accordance with adhering to God’s will. There are no weekend warriors in God’s Army. God’s Kingdom does and should affect every aspect of our lives. At home, at work, at play and at rest. This includes our immediate and distant families, fellow workers, neighbours and acquaintances. And no, it isn’t easy, especially when we’re talking about putting self on the back burner. But, over time, most of the things that I used to want in my mind, I no longer want, and now there are many things that I do want in my mind, that I did not want before. And, most importantly, it is only when one becomes mindful of the reality of God and His inner guidance to our mind and to our soul, that one begins to comprehend the magnitude of the transformation that is taking place. And if we compare ourselves to an onion, with many layers to be revealed and dealt with, the onion is usually much much bigger than we ever anticipated.

Yet, while we are going through this mind transformation, our soul or spirit is now linked again with God’s Spirit and He once again takes His rightful place as our God and Saviour. Like Adam had it, before the fall.  Our physical body, including our mind, is being renewed to become more inline with what Adam originally had in the beginning.

Yet, because our physical body still suffers from the consequences of our initial broken state, our bodies will die. And our minds, in these bodies, that are still subject to us wanting to be in the driver’s seat, still fights against our dependence and reliance on God. It undoubtedly diminishes over time but it is always there and will remain there, until these bodies we live in die.

But the resurrection of Jesus is God’s promise to us that because Jesus rose from the dead, so shall we and we also shall be given new bodies, like His, that are not subject to death but are now immortal, because we are in union with our Creator God, once again, like Adam was with God prior to the fall.

These concepts are not always easy to grasp because now we see in part and experience in part but these realities are very real. Much that Jesus spoke about addresses these very realities. But the concepts themselves are just part of the reality, almost the mechanics if you will, because the most fundamental and solidifying part of this experience and reality is not just going through and learning about the conflicts that we experience but coming to know and trust our Saviour Jesus, while we are learning of these realities. Everything about Jesus points to our total dependency in Him. Everything. Just like Adam trusted God and depended on God for everything prior to the fall. 

I literally haven’t even scratched the surface to the linkage or correlations between the first Adam and the last Adam (Jesus) as found in God’s Word, and the purpose and beauty of God’s plan of redemption. But God’s plan, God’s purpose, needs to be visualized and understood for what it truly is, because in doing so, it places this physical reality that we live in, and the mental battles that we experience, in perspective, to the greater spiritual reality of who God is.

The Garden of Eden, God is taking us back to what once was, only much much better.

I found this short paragraph authored by a gentleman named J. Vernon McGee a few years ago and I will leave it with you in closing.

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Worthy is the Lamb! Blessings!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

About

Disciple of Jesus, married to Peggy, with 5 grown up children, 7 grand children, ex-Canadian Armed Forces and residing in beautiful Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. a.k.a. "Papa"

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Posted in Apologetics, Creationism, Defending Christianity, Faith, New Testament, Old Testament
2 comments on “The Garden of Eden
  1. Gary Fultz says:

    I used to listen to DR. McGee’s radio program in the 70’s as I drove an hour to work every day.
    Yesterday I met with a friend whom God has asked him to prayer and fasting about 6 hours a day. Not fasting from food but fasting from the activities he loves to do (hunting, fishing and restoring old machinery), I relate well to concepts note easy to grasp and even more to transferring those concepts into everyday practice. It takes that union with God’s spirit, listening ability and response-ability.

    Like

    • Bruce says:

      Hi Gary, you’re right and it’s so beautiful that God creates the desire in us to draw closer to Him, that compels us, sometimes kicking and dragging our feet, but He prevails. I need so much more of that. God’s grace, peace and blessings to you and yours my friend. – Bruce

      Like

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