A CREATION, A GENERATION
BY: LLOYD ELLEFSON
The first book of the Bible, Genesis, is a very interesting book! Genesis means beginning or origin. It is the first of five books that Moses wrote - often referred to as the books of Moses. The events recorded in Genesis happened many years before Moses was born. Many of these events have been misunderstood. Someone has said that all the heresies and apostasies begin in this book. There may be some truth in that. There is a lot of controversy over the text of this introductory book to all biblical Hebrew writings.
Genesis does not portray a succession of events, but the beginning of events. Today's many doctrines about creation and evolution and Adam and consciousness, have their source in Genesis. Various nationalities have their stories and myths about the origin of things. These stories are passed down from generation to generation, and even filter through to other countries. Genesis is also the reason for many arguments. The original Hebrew text has long been lost. Languages keep changing - and the Hebrew language is no exception. It too has experienced many changes since the writing of this book. The Babylonian captivity of the Jews had quite an effect on their language. Even the characters they used in writing changed. Many adopted the Aramaic language.
Because of the many changes in the language, can we actually believe today's translations of Genesis? We know that God had His hand in it, but so did man. However, a pure translation of the original manuscripts is not the answer either. The book of Genesis has to be understood in the light of the New Testament! The revelation we receive in Jesus Christ opens the scriptures of Genesis 1 and 2. Without the Holy Spirit's revelation of the scriptures, men would continue probing the meaning of the scriptures with their intellectual mind, and never come to the knowledge of the truth. In spite of all the things that are divisive and would divert from the truth, the fundamental message of Genesis received in spiritual revelation comes through.
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. The Spirit (Christ) has always been - He was there before the beginning, at the beginning, and at the disruption of the world. When this Christ, the Spirit of truth, is in us, He reveals what is truth and what it is error in everything we hear and read. This takes place as our ears are open to His voice. But of course many of the scholars who understood the Hebrew and were involved in the translations, lacked a conscious relationship with the Spirit. So they used their intellect to the best of their natural ability.
"In the beginning God..." We are to see the work God has done, and what He is doing in us today. It is good to remember that GOD, ELOHIM in Hebrew, is a plural word, but the Spirit is always singular. The word ELOHIM is made up of three words. The EL means HIGHEST; He is the One who has the power to subject everything to Himself. The OH, in combination with El, means the One who does the subjecting, which is God's word by the Spirit. God spoke and the Spirit moved over the waters, and it brought light. And the last part, the IM, makes it plural. So out of God comes His purpose and His power to subject all things to Himself! After God created nature, He created man in His image. Those who are in Christ, are the human representation of God; they are made in the image of God.
Paul wrote, "For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse." (Rom. 1:20) God's invisible attributes and His eternal power are revealed by, and in the things He has made. Behind the visible creation is the invisible God! The visible has been created from that which is invisible! Creation demonstrates the creative ability and power of God, and convinces us that there is a God!
When God began His work of creation, there were no people and there were no languages. When God said, "Let there be light," He did not speak in English nor in Hebrew, nor in any other known language. God is spirit, so He doesn't necessarily speak with a voice - though He can speak with a voice. There was no one there to hear Him say, "Let there be light... It is good," etc.
Our basic interest is to see the progression of God's plan of redemption, namely, the bringing forth of Jesus Christ, who sent us His Spirit of truth. His Spirit leads us into ALL truth. So any argument or criticism, whether about evolution or any scripture-related subject, like the law of Moses, does not have any validity or foundation unless its source is the Holy Spirit. As we discuss creation we must pay particular attention to the spiritual meaning, for it is the real message of the scriptures!
"In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. And the earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep..." (Gen. 1:1-2a) Where did the darkness come from? Darkness is not created; it is simply the absence of light. God created the heavens and the earth, and they contained the waters. As we shall see, they were not all identified at once - a process was involved in identifying them.
"...and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters." The waters covered the earth; the atmosphere (or heavens) was not isolated and identified at that time. It was in a chaotic condition. In Isaiah 45:18 it says, "For thus says the LORD, who created the heavens (He is the God who formed the earth and made it. He established it and did not create it a waste place; but formed it to be inhabited), I am the LORD, and there is none else." This verse tells us that the earth was not as it had been created.
"Then God said, `Let there be light'; and there was light. And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness." (Gen. 1:3-4) I don't believe the light and darkness were physical, because it wasn't until day 4 that "God made the two great lights, the greater light to govern the day, and the lesser light to govern the night." (v.16) The light and darkness that were in the beginning did not constitute a week of seven 24-hour days. I believe each of these days which consisted of evening and morning, expressed a measure of illumination of God's Word. God was the only one who existed at that time. In order to bring about this creation, He worked everything according to the counsel of His own will. So it was out of the illumination in God that all things came into being.
2 Cor. 4:6 is the reason for that statement. "For God, who said, `Light shall shine out of darkness,' is the One who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ." People could not see because they did not have light; they were in darkness - the darkness that is in ignorance. We can't divide the heavens and the earth and the water in our lives without the illumination of God. This illumination is given to us by God progressively.
The writer of Hebrews tells us "that what is seen was not made out of things which are visible." (11:3) The things which we see are not made out of things which are in the visible or seen realm. Paul said, "...we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal." (2 Cor. 4:18) There is an unseen energy, source or power that is bringing forth something in the seen realm and identifying it. I believe this is not only a pattern we observe in creation, but also in human nature. In the chaos of our human nature, we have our earth, our sea, and our heavens, but they are not divided until we get into the Spirit. Then we can begin to see what part of us is soul and what part of us is spirit, and that the body is our dwelling place. We also recognize where our consciousness is - whether it is in Adam or in Christ.
"...and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters. Then God said, `Let there be light'; and there was light." (vv.2-3) Light is necessary for life and growth. The activity of this light began the process of bringing God's plan into being and fruition. "And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness." (v.4) Isn't this neat! Ignorance is divided or separated from the illumination or enlightenment!
"And God called the light day, and the darkness He called night..." (v.5) As usual, we've got it turned around. We call the day light, and the night darkness. Day and night are of great importance to us. But if we can see day and night as representing understanding and ignorance, we understand that we can't see the difference between them until we receive spiritual light. The heavens, earth and the seas were not divided in creation until light came. That is very evident here.
"And there was evening and there was morning, one day." (v.5b) The day is a measure of light. What light? It is not the light of the two great lights, the sun and the moon, nor the light of the stars of day 4. This light is the light that is in Jesus Christ, the light who IS Jesus Christ! In Col. 1:16 it says that everything was made by Him, for Him, and to Him. Nothing was made without Him!
We notice that God has a commitment in this progression of identification. He says, "`Let there be an expanse (or firmament) in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters from the waters.' And God made the expanse, and separated the waters which were below the expanse from the waters which were above the expanse; and it was so. And God called the expanse heavens. And there was evening and there was morning, a second day." (vv.6-8) The atmosphere divided the waters from the waters. This is what it was to accomplish. It divided the waters; the water in the heavens or atmosphere was in a gaseous atmospheric state, and the water below was in liquid form as in seas, oceans, etc.
How could the firmament bring about this division? God said, "Let it divide." As we observe the pattern of light and darkness representing understanding and ignorance, we see the heavens destined to rule - and they do rule. The earth and the sea are always in ignorance; they only have earthy enlightenment. If we have bad heavens, we have a bad earth. When this world system rules, we have bad heavens and a bad earth. Christ's kingdom is not of this world. We are not to love the world, neither the things which are in this world. There is a god of this world and we are not to worship it. (2 Cor. 4:4)
God called the firmament or expanse heaven. Now most people today think they are going to go to heaven, but all these places, whether of understanding or ignorance, are dwelling places in human awareness, realization and consciousness. It depends upon the source of their information - whether it's the spiritual light mentioned in Gen. 1, or the natural light of day 4, that comes to man in a physical sense.
"Then God said, `Let the waters below the heavens be gathered into one place, and let the dry land appear'; and it was so." (v.9) God set boundaries for the waters, and they became seas, rivers, etc., and the land, or earth appeared. The earth emerged out of the waters. We have emerged out of the sea of humanity, out of our darkness and chaos - our inability to identify light from darkness! This is the pattern for our redemption from ignorance!
Genesis 2 and other scripture passages give us some clarity in regard to the dry land or earth. As we pursue this further, we find there is an earthy and a spiritual concept of things - an earthy man and a heavenly man. The earthy wicked man knows nothing about spiritual realities; he dwells in the sea of humanity. "...the wicked are like the tossing sea, for it cannot be quiet, and its waters toss up refuse and mud." (Isaiah 57:20)
Let us bear in mind that the things, which became visible were made out of things that are not visible to our eyes. In 1 Cor. 15 Paul said that there is a soulish or a natural body, and there is a spiritual body. He said, "There IS." He didn't say, "There is going to be." Most people are looking for a new body. However, the realization of the newness of life resulting from being a new creation in Christ Jesus, comes from growing out of the sea and out of the earth. We know this because in Rev. 12:12, God speaking by the Spirit said, "...rejoice O heavens and you who dwell in them. Woe to the earth and the sea..." Why? Because if you dwell in either of these two stages of your consciousness and awareness (the earth and the sea), "the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, knowing that he has only a short time." Since he has been cast out of the heavens, he cannot work in those who dwell there.
"And God called the dry land earth, and the gathering of the waters He called seas; and God saw that it was good. Then God said, `Let the earth sprout vegetation, plants yielding seed, and fruit trees bearing fruit after their kind, with seed in them, on the earth'; and it was so." (Gen. 1:10-11) Here we see God's energy demonstrated as His purpose unfolds in the development of trees and plants out of an embryo that is already there. The seeds of these plants will produce new plants. "And the earth brought forth vegetation, plants yielding seed after their kind, and trees bearing fruit, with seed in them, after their kind; and God saw that it was good." (v.12) Here we see the reason for apple seeds producing apple trees and more apples, wheat producing wheat, etc. Seeds develop new seeds in their own likeness. So when God's seed in us germinates, it will reproduce according to its kind! Satan's seed also reproduces according to its kind.
On the fourth day natural light is created. "Then God said, `Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night, and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days and years; and let them be for lights in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth'; and it was so. And God made the two great lights, the greater light to govern the day, and the lesser light to govern the night; He made the stars also. And God placed them in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth." (vv.14-17)
We are all familiar with these lights. The prophet Joel predicted that the sun and the moon would lose their light. After the Holy Spirit had been poured out in Acts 2, in reference to Joel's prophecy, Peter said, "This is that" which the prophet Joel prophesied. The coming of the Holy Spirit is the fulfillment of that prophecy! The spiritual meaning is that the sun and the moon, signifying natural understanding, would not be the real light for our understanding and illumination - it would be the light of Genesis 1:3! This light has come to us in Christ Jesus!
"And to govern the day and the night, and to separate the light from the darkness; and God saw that it was good. And there was evening and there was morning, a fourth day." (vv.18-19) Notice that God made everything good!
Then God began to equip His creation with living things. He said, "Let the waters teem with swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth in the open expanse of the heavens." (v.20) The translation here causes a little problem. Scholars generally agree that instead of LIVING CREATURES it should read the LIVING SOULS THAT MOVE. It is rather interesting to note that fish, birds and animals have souls. They have life, a soul, and movement. Plant life has growth and produces seed after its kind, but it doesn't have movement. Plants are stationary; they remain where they are planted.
In Leviticus 17 it says we are not to eat blood because the soul is in the blood. Unfortunately, this word has been translated LIFE instead of SOUL. So people say that life is in the blood. That faulty translation is the source of a lot of error, because life is in the Spirit; it is in God! The blood represents the soul, the awareness. It brings an awareness of what is occurring to the physical body. If one's finger is cut off or its circulation is cut off, it ceases to have awareness.
Let's note another interesting point in v. 20 quoted above. Science for years has taught that winged creatures came out of the sea, and began to fly. They have found many ancient bone fragments and skeletons from which they determine this. This is very interesting! There is some indication in Genesis to substantiate that. "And God created the great sea monsters, and every living creature that moves, with which the waters swarmed after their kind, and every winged bird after its kind; and God saw that it was good." (v.21) It would seem that not only the creatures of the sea, but also the birds of the air came out of the water.
"And God blessed them, saying, `Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.' And there was evening and there was morning, a fifth day." (v.22-23) Evening is a declining of light, and morning is a brightness of light. Jesus was crucified on the evening of the Sabbath. This represented the declining light of human nature. The resurrection morning brought the resurrection of spiritual illumination. Man had lacked this illumination. Jesus Christ brought us redemption and illumination!
"Then God said, `Let the earth bring forth living creatures after their kind: cattle and creeping things and beasts of the earth after their kind'; and it was so." (v.24) God does not deal in afterthoughts; He always has a purpose in mind for everything He creates. Before He created the earth, He already knew everything He would produce out of the earth, and therefore He provided the earth with all the nutrients and other components needed for life to make and sustain His creation.
His purpose was further revealed in producing living creatures or living souls. "And God made the beasts of the earth after their kind, and the cattle after their kind, and every thing that creeps on the ground after its kind; and God saw that it was good." (v.25) These are all living souls, and all have movement. So you see there were moving, living souls in existence before man was created. The soul is not an agency of reproduction; it is an agency of reception. If you mind the flesh you will receive the motions, energy, and things of the flesh - an awareness brought to you through your five senses. However limited this awareness or sense of being of who you are may be, it constitutes the soul. The soul can only receive ideas, realization and feelings, and put them in storage. These form the awareness of who you are.
We didn't know anything about the Spirit until Jesus Christ came. Our spirit had to be quickened or awakened by the coming of Christ before we could understand these things in a new dimension. In v. 26 we come to the place where God declares that He is going to make an image or representation of Himself - one that has the ability to live in creation. God said, "Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness..." This man was to have dominion and the power to subject things to himself; he was to have a kingdom that was subject to him - as God does. He was to be a representation of God.
Before we go on, I want to underscore two of the things we have already mentioned. The first light was the illumination that is in the mind of God and was later expressed in Christ. The real light, the true light, is a revelation of God Himself through Jesus Christ! Each day was a measure of that light; each day revealed a new stage of the understanding that is in God. Then we find that the days, seasons and times in the natural also represent measures of the illumination that is in God.
In Hebrews 1:2 we read, "In these last days (God) has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the ages." Previously God spoke to the fathers through the prophets, but now He has spoken to us in His Son. God makes the ages through Christ His Son! The illumination we have in Christ produces the ages! These ages are not produced by the sun, moon, days and times.
Jesus came when "the time was fulfilled". Jesus began His ministry by saying, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel." (Mk. 1:15) The gospel of the kingdom declares that we are going to have a new rule in our lives. It will not come through natural light, the natural mind, nor the physical body. We have been made new creatures in Christ Jesus! We have been born of incorruptible seed! We have a new body, a new soul, and a spirit that has been made alive. We are not our old selves redone, altered, or made new. We are new creations in Christ Jesus! Something unseen has been created in us; this is the same unseen that produced everything in the natural. The new rule gives us control over the natural. But that is a ways down the road for most of us.
God said, "Let Us make man in Our image..." God made an image and He called it man. Now there are two images, but this is the first one. The second image comes in the second chapter. The first image of God is spiritual. The image is the important thing here, just like the light of God's spoken word in the beginning. Man is a representation of the invisible Father God who created all things. Representation of God in the true sense cannot truly happen until the spiritual image of God is known and consciously recognized while we are still living in our fleshly body according to days and nights. Since we cannot see the invisible God, Jesus Christ came in the exact image of the invisible God (not man's idea of God but the revelation of the invisible God given us by the Holy Spirit) that we could learn to know Him.
In the scriptures the terms ages and a thousand years are symbolic. The word millennium is not found in the scriptures, but people refer to a thousand years as a millennium. However, there is no millennium as popularly taught today. Since a thousand years are as a day in the Lord's eyes, can you imagine how long a millennium would be in His eyes? What difference does time make to Him who lives in timelessness? People concoct all kinds of theories - they make days weeks, and weeks years, etc. If you are clever enough, you can come up with any mathematical answer you desire. We are never told to depend on mathematics or human ability to ferret out God's plan.
"Then God (Elohim) said, "Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness..." Natural man is not a spiritual image of God because he does not have the Son, the Word, the Spirit, the Oneness with God who created everything. He is just an earthy image of God. God produced an image of Himself in the flesh, when He gave us Jesus Christ, His Son, and is now producing a spiritual image of Himself in us. This is the image we are concerned with right now - and we'll see more of this later.
In Genesis 1 and 2, two images are presented, the spiritual and the earthy. 1 Cor. 15: 40-49 gives a clearer picture of this, showing us that the natural man has been birthed and generated in the image of the earthy. That is, our first representation of God has been earthy. When we are born of the Spirit, our representation of God is spiritual. Unless we receive spiritual revelation, we cannot understand these spiritual realities.
To this spiritual image of God, dominion is given "over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth." This dominion or rule is not given to the earthy image of God, namely the Adam of Genesis two. As we compare the two chapters, differences in these two men become very obvious. This is very interesting! Most people just talk about one Adam. But the fact that there are two distinct men in the scriptures, is made very clear in Eph. 2 and 4; Col. 3; 1 Cor. 15.
In v. 27 we read, "And God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them." God created this man - He didn't birth him, and He didn't form him. He created him both male and female. Male and female do not have the same meaning as man and woman. In Jesus Christ there is neither male nor female. This does not refer to man and woman; man and woman are earthy images of God. The true image of God has male and female as being one. This image of God is produced by the Word of God. He is the male and the female; He has the promise and the fulfillment. He is the Word, and in the Word is the energy to perform it. God is one God; in Him male and female are one - they are not two.
"And God blessed them;" (this is not said of the second man) "and God said to them, `Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.'" (v.28) Man tries to rule over nature in a natural way - and what a mess he has made of it! This rulership has to come through the spiritual man.
"Then God said, `Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the surface of all the earth, and every tree which has fruit yielding seed; it shall be food for you.'" (v.29) This man didn't get any restrictions like the man in Genesis 2 did. Many people use this verse as their foundation for being vegetarians, because He gave the plant life, not the animals, to be our food. However, after the flood God said, "Every moving thing that is alive shall be food for you; I give all to you, as I gave the green plant. Only you shall not eat flesh with its life (soul), that is, its blood." (Gen. 9:3-4)
I believe these things are figurative, because this pertains to the spiritual man. The spiritual man has dominion over plant, animal. and bird life. The spiritual man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God. The fruit symbolizes spiritual food, and has to be received spiritually. This may take time to understand. Our spiritual understanding comes from the Spirit's illumination of the New Testament teachings.
"`And to every beast of the earth and to every bird of the sky and to every thing that moves on the earth which has life, I have given every green plant for food;' and it was so. And God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day." (vv.30-31) In my opinion, when God said, "it is very good," God was referring to the creation that is waiting for the sons to be manifested. (Rom. 8:21-22) It is waiting for the sons to come into spiritual realization. When this occurs, the sons of God are manifested as being sons of God. They will then be living in the spiritual creation which produced the seen realm. The things that are seen were made of things that do not appear!
"Thus the heavens and the earth were completed, and all their hosts. And by the seventh day God completed His work which He had done; and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done." (Gen. 2:1-2) Many keep the seventh day, Saturday, as their Sabbath. Others claim that Sunday is the Lord's day. The Lord's day is not a 24-hour day, nor a 12-hour day. When Jesus said, "Are there not 12 hours in the day?", He was teaching His disciples a new concept. He was saying that day is where light is. The remainder is darkness. So God rested in the enlightenment or illumination of all that He did, and what it was - and behold, it was very good! That which is made of the incorruptible word cannot be corrupted, for it was made by the very word out of which we were born again. As Peter said, "You have been born again not of seed that is perishable (corruptible), but imperishable (incorruptible), that is, through the living and abiding word of God." (1 Peter 1:23) Those who have been born of an incorruptible seed, are to live in an incorruptible creation. This is the fulfillment of Rom. 8:19-21 about the manifestation or revelation of the sons of God. Their liberty will bring forth what the creation is groaning for.
In other words, man has messed up everything because he only functions in his earthy understanding. In Genesis 2 God generated the seen things out of the Spirit - out of the unseen! In Hebrews it says, "...so that what is seen was not made out of things which are visible." (Heb. 11:3) But there IS an appearance! The things that are seen are not a delusion, for they were not concocted by the human mind. No human being has ever created himself, any living creature, or anything as extensive as our material creation. God has purpose in creation, even though we don't completely understand it. God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because He rested from all His work. It was finished!
"These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the LORD God made the earth and the heavens." (Gen. 2:4 KJV) The material heavens and earth were generated out of the spiritual realm. In this chapter God is introduced by another name - the name of LORD God. The LORD God is not another God - it is another name for the same God. The word LORD is translated from the Hebrew YHWH, or Yahweh - the vowels were added by people. In the KJV and many other translations, YHWH is translated LORD (all capitals). This is also true of the New Testament. In Luke 4 Jesus said, "The LORD has anointed Me." It means Yahweh. "Yahweh has anointed Me to preach the gospel, and set at liberty those who are in prison..." Jesus was anointed by Yahweh.
"Now no shrub of the field was yet in the earth, and no plant of the field had yet sprouted..." (v.5) Where were the shrubs before they were visible? Obviously in the unseen realm. "...for the LORD God had not sent rain upon the earth; and there was no man to cultivate the ground." A man was needed to cultivate the ground, and he did not yet exist at that time. What about the man who had been created in chapter one? That man was spiritual, and God needed a physical man for the manual labor required in the material creation; this man did not yet exist.
"But a mist used to rise from the earth and water the whole surface of the ground." (v.6) This is generating it out of the existing material creation. "Then the LORD God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul." (v.7) This man was formed; he was not created! God formed another image of Himself - this time an earthy image formed out of the dust of the ground, the material creation which contained all the elements to form him. Since he was made of dust, he had an affinity for earthy things. This became his problem. God breathed the breath of life into the nostrils of this man formed of dust, and he became a living soul. He was formed out of existing materials and then became a living soul. People are only aware of their natural existence - not of their divine origin. So they live in the light of their human nature. That is why Paul told the pagans on Mars Hill, "In God we live and move and have our being." (Acts 17) In Eph. 4 we see that the new man is created according to the image of God. ‘
"And the LORD God planted a garden toward the east, in Eden; and there He placed the man whom He had formed. And out of the ground the LORD God caused to grow every tree that is pleasing to the sight and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Now a river flowed out of Eden to water the garden; and from there it divided and became four rivers." (vv.8-10) Yahweh Elohim planted a garden; the trees grew out of the ground. These seen things were generated out of things that are unseen.
"Then the LORD God took the man and put him into the Garden of Eden to cultivate it and keep it. And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, `From any tree of the garden you may eat freely; but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you shall surely die.'" (vv.15-17) There were lots of trees in the garden, but only one of which they were not to eat! This was a test of obedience. The tree was the means by which man was tested.
"And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the sky..." (v.19) Here the ground is bringing forth living creatures. This is not mere repetition; it is generation.
Then God told Adam to name all the animals. "And the man gave names to all the cattle, and to the birds of the sky, and to every beast of the field, but for Adam there was not found a helper suitable for him." (v.20) God saw Adam's need and immediately proceeded to do something about it. First of all He put Adam to sleep. "So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and he slept..." In 1 Cor. 15 it says that Jesus was the first fruits; He was the first one to be awakened out of this sleep. This refers to those who slept in Adam's sleep. This sleep put Adam in an unconscious state of who He really was. Was this God's way of preparing him for receiving a mate corresponding to him?
"...then He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh at that place. And the LORD God fashioned into a woman the rib, which He had taken from the man, and brought her to the man. And the man said, `This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman because she was taken out of Man.' For this cause a man shall leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and they shall become one flesh. And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed." (vv.21-25) This man was put in the garden to cultivate and dress the earth. He was not given dominion and was not blessed; he was put to sleep and divided; a woman was made out of his rib; he did not receive all the promises the first man received; he was not given the freedom to eat of every tree, nor did God say, "It is good," like He did of the first man. This second man had limitations, and his affinity was for things that came out of creation. He was not created - he was formed out of existing materials.
"Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made..." (Gen. 3:1) Notice that the LORD God made the serpent along with the other beasts, and its craftiness was compared with theirs. There must have been some way that it could communicate with the earthy man, for it says that "he said to the woman..." Notice that the serpent spoke to the woman, not to Adam; nor did Adam speak to the serpent. Remember that the serpent was a beast of the field, created by God.
The book of Revelation contains many references to the beast; it shows that the mind of the beast is not a good one. Rev. 12:9 spells this out very clearly. "And the great dragon was thrown down, the serpent of old who is called the devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world..." His mind is one of lies and deception, and therefore we should not mind (listen) to the beast. The physical man has been FORMED out of the dust of the earth. Everything in the seen realm has been generated out of the earth that God created. To disagree with God is to have the mind of the beast, for it minds or obeys its own natural inclinations, and worships a god or gods of its own making and imagination. Those who are minding or obeying the Spirit are not minding the beast, and therefore do not have the mind of the beast.
The serpent said to the woman, "Indeed, has God said, `You shall not eat from any tree of the garden?' And the woman said to the serpent, `From the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat; but from the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, God has said, `You shall not eat from it or touch it, lest you die.'" (vv.1b-3) Now there were two trees in the midst of the garden: the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, and the tree of life. These represent two ways of perceiving God. Only knowing the things of God through good and evil (the natural mind), causes one to perceive the Christ in this manner. But this is not good! This thinking was introduced to Eve by a third party, by a beast of the field! This information did not come from God! A desire of the flesh came to Eve. The true way to perceive the Christ comes from the tree of life!
Listen to this. "And the serpent said to the woman, `You surely shall not die'!" (v.4) This was a blatant contradiction to God's words; God had said that they would die. "For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil." (v.5) The KJV uses the plural "gods", but the Concordant and other translations make it clear that the serpent says she will be like God Himself. "When the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was desirable to make one wise, she took from its fruit and ate; and she gave also to her husband with her, and he ate." (v.6)
The problem was that the serpent was successful in persuading Eve to disobey God's word! This is humanity's problem too, isn't it? This is where all the trouble lies! Eve saw that the tree was good for food. Jesus was also tempted in the area of food. After 40 days of fasting in the desert He was hungry, and He was tempted to turn the stones into bread. After Jesus quoted scripture, the devil thought he could get Jesus to obey him by also quoting scripture. What a deceptive scheme! The devil tried to persuade Christ to obey him by acting upon what the scriptures promise! That's exactly what the devil tried on Jesus. He told Jesus to jump down from the pinnacle of the temple and He would not break His leg; nothing would happen to His physical body, because God had promised to keep Him. The devil knows what the scriptures say in the physical sense, but he doesn't know what the Spirit of God teaches! Because he operates through the flesh, he uses the scriptures to divert man from the spiritual meaning.
So why did Jesus quote scripture to satan? Why did He say, "It is written"? What had happened to Jesus before He was led by the Spirit into the desert? For 30 years He had lived under the law in His identification with us. Then He was baptized at the Jordan River and received the Holy Spirit. He became a spirit man, and no longer functioned as an Adamic man under the law. His spirit had been quickened by the Holy Spirit! Now He was functioning in the spiritual image of God, so He did not fall into this temptation of the devil. This is a pattern for us. Adam yielded when living in an idyllic environment, but Jesus continued to live in the image of God during the most difficult circumstances! He was the express image of God at all times, and never once tainted God's character.
We have to understand that everything the devil says is a lie; he always lies; he can't do anything but lie. In John 8:44 Jesus said that the devil is the father of lies. He didn't say that he had been a good angel at some time. He is the father of lies; he was a murderer from the beginning; there is no truth in him! Jesus said, "...for the ruler of the world is coming, and he has nothing in Me." (Jn. 14:30) Jesus overcame the world, not by fighting, but by simply obeying the Spirit of God who was at work in Him. In this obedience there was no point of contact in Jesus for the devil to latch onto. That is why he failed in his mission to get Jesus to disobey God.
Eve was deceived, but Adam was not deceived; he sinned knowingly. He became her redeemer as far as the flesh was concerned by helping her to bring forth offspring through whom the true redeemer, Jesus, was born.
Disobedience brought about the disruption of God's rule in man. The earthy, human, Adamic man was not the spiritual man. He was subjected to earthy thinking and earthy desires, and so he misrepresented the image of God. This Adamic idea of God was present until Jesus came and manifested the Christ. Until then, God was only manifested in subjection to human nature. Sadly enough, most people do not recognize that our Redeemer has come to bring us out of our carnal thinking. He has given us the mind of Christ; He has given us the Holy Spirit! Now we can begin to get an understanding of spiritual things! These become our life and dwelling place!
The new man is a new representation of God. What happens to the old representation when we become the new representation? Is the representation destroyed, beaten or killed? No, I think our earthy image of God is now being displaced by our spiritual image! As long as we are on earth, we are the continuation of the Christ in the earth. God has given us the ministry of reconciling people to Himself through the same Christ who is in us.
When Jesus was on earth, He continually called Himself the Son of Man. In the book of Matthew alone, He called Himself the Son of Man 30 times. After Jesus received the Holy Spirit, He testified that the Son of Man would be given into the hands of men; the Son of Man would be crucified; the Son of Man would be raised; the Son of Man would come again. If we are in Christ, we have His Spirit within us; a new man has been formed in us! This new man is the new representation of God. We are members of the body of Christ, so we are an extension of the Son of Man.
God does not do anything without Christ. Everything spiritual happens in the Christ; all reality is in Him. All activity in the kingdom of God is unseen. The kingdom of God does not come in the seen realm. Natural man can only observe the Christian's life - his walk in the Spirit. He can see the changes that occur when he quits catering to the desires of the flesh; he can hear the testimony of hope, and see the resulting peace of having one's hope in the realization of spiritual realities. But he cannot see the spiritual progression taking place in the Christian's life.
The invisible things, the things which do not appear to the natural eye, are working in us. They bring forth a testimony in us and produce the image of Christ in us while we are still living on this earth. I believe that our testimony continues (endures) when the Spirit has dominion over the flesh. The flesh will die, but what we have in Him will never die. The prophecy in Genesis 3 declared that what is made of dust shall return to dust. All that is in the earth bears testimony that the physical has never been resurrected, nor will it ever be resurrected! Corruption does not put on incorruption.
We are new creatures, formed by the Spirit! We have no need to carry an earthy body (an earthy image) into the kingdom of God. Matthew 19:28 says, "And Jesus said to them, `Truly I say to you, that you who have followed Me, in the regeneration when the Son of Man will sit on His glorious throne, you also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.'" Now that Christ has come to regenerate us, He establishes us into the realization of the sons of God! He brings us into the recognition that we are redeemed, regenerated, renewed and reborn into a spiritual realization of who we are, who God is, and who Christ is!
May God bless you with understanding. Amen.