God Planted a Garden

Gen 2&8.jpg

I had a conversation once where I was asked about the differences in the creation story between Genesis 1 and 2.  At the time I was still a babe in faith and didn’t know how to respond, so I didn’t handle it as smoothly as I would have liked. This week in school we are studying Genesis and when we read chapters 1 and 2 the other day it hit me.  They are different on purpose, God meant it to be that way.  Let me explain in case you ever get hit with this supposed issue as why the Bible cant be the Word of God and thus true.

Genesis 1:1-31
(1)  In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
(2)  And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.
(3)  And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.
(4)  And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.
(5)  And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.
(6)  And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.
(7)  And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so.
(8)  And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day.
(9)  And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so.
(10)  And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that it was good.
(11)  And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so.
(12)  And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good.
(13)  And the evening and the morning were the third day.
(14)  And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years:
(15)  And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so.
(16)  And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also.
(17)  And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth,
(18)  And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good.
(19)  And the evening and the morning were the fourth day.
(20)  And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven.
(21)  And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good.
(22)  And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth.
(23)  And the evening and the morning were the fifth day.
(24)  And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so.
(25)  And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good.
(26)  And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
(27)  So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
(28)  And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.
(29)  And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.
(30)  And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so.
(31)  And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

That’s chapter one.  We see the order of creation and how each days work was completed.

Day 1 God spoke light into existence and created the heaven and the earth – most likely this means the matter each is made of not the final forms.  And it was good.

let-there-be-light

Day 2 sees the waters of the firmament divided and space, the planets including the earth in shape as well as the atmosphere formed.  And it was good.

Day 3 sees the water gathered in to rivers and seas and the dry land called earth appear.  Note this is not referring to the planet but the actual soil.  The earth or dirt is formed already sowed with seeds and plants in the soil ready to spring forth – the grass, flowers, trees it was all there.  And it was good.

Day 4 gives us the sun. moon and stars to give us light and to mark times, months, seasons and years.  And it was good.

gen-114

Day 5 was the day that God created the first creatures.  Out of the waters he made to spring forth all sorts of fish and sea creatures.  He also made the birds of the air come flying up out of the water.  And it was good.

Day 6 we all know was his crowning creation.  On this day he creates all the animals and insects before his greatest act of creation – man!  And then he looked at all he had created and he said it was VERY GOOD!

So as we know day 7 he took a break and then we move to chapter 2 which seems all crazy wrong at first glance, if you read it but don’t really think about it.

Genesis 2:4-25
(4)  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,
(5)  And every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and every herb of the field before it grew: for the LORD God had not caused it to rain upon the earth, and there was not a man to till the ground.
(6)  But there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground.
(7)  And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.
(8)  And the LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed.
(9)  And out of the ground made the LORD God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil.
(10)  And a river went out of Eden to water the garden; and from thence it was parted, and became into four heads.
(11)  The name of the first is Pison: that is it which compasseth the whole land of Havilah, where there is gold;
(12)  And the gold of that land is good: there is bdellium and the onyx stone.
(13)  And the name of the second river is Gihon: the same is it that compasseth the whole land of Ethiopia.
(14)  And the name of the third river is Hiddekel: that is it which goeth toward the east of Assyria. And the fourth river is Euphrates.
(15)  And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.
(16)  And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:
(17)  But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.
(18)  And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.
(19)  And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.
(20)  And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him.
(21)  And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof;
(22)  And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man.
(23)  And Adam 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.
(24)  Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.
(25)  And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.

Ok, first off he quickly recaps days 1-3 in Gen. 2:1  then in verses 2:5-6 we are told that although the seed for all the plants of day 4 were already in the ground, they hadn’t sprouted yet because they hadn’t been watered.  God remedies this by causing a mist to rise up fro the ground – a gentle, perfect sprinkler.  Thus enhancing the previously given information, not different information just greater details.

Verses 2:7-14 skip right to day 6 by explaining exactly how man was formed and given life.  We are made of the dust of the earth and God himself breathed the breathe of life into us.  After creating man he creates a home for him.  He plants a garden right before the man’s eyes – The Garden of Eden.  Adam actually witnessed God planting the garden, so he knew 100%, without a doubt that God did in fact create the earth and plants and trees.  God creates a river that flows into 4 distinct rivers and thus waters the garden, that it will produce abundantly for the man.

Moving on to verses 2:15-17 we see man being placed in the garden to tend and keep it, right off he is told his purpose, job if you will.  He is also forewarned of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil which is to avoid partaking of.  For if he eats of it then he will die.  Now God didn’t mean an instant death but that his innocence would be lost, his nearness and oneness with God the creator, and sin would begin to way on and wear him down.  He would loose his divine luster so to speak, would be left naked, chilled, heartsick, broken.  God tries from the beginning to spare man from what He already knows will come.  Let us rejoice that we do not have to remain in that pitful, lowly, hopeless condition that Adam was warned of.  For through faith in the Cross of Christ, through His blood, through the repentance of our sins and acceptance of His freely given gift of salvation to us we are spared this miserable picture of bleakness.

Verse 2:18 addresses the fact that thus far God has only made one man, alone, which isn’t good.  God the Father wants him to have a helpmeet, someone to share his tasks with which before sin are light, enjoyable but still somewhat lonely work without a companion to share our lives with.

So we see God in verses 2:19-20 creating yet again.  This time he forms 1 of every land creature and fowl of the air from the earth, the same dust man was formed from, right before Adam’s eyes.  Never would Adam be able to wonder whether God really created the world around us, the entire universe or single spoken sentence, for he saw God plant the garden and water it with a mighty rolling river, create from the dust (just as man himself came) one of every beast, creeping thing and bird.  Now this is where another supposed issue arises.  In chapter 2 God forms the land animals first then the birds both from the soil of the earth.  But in chapter 1 the birds were created on day 5 from the water, not the earth, and then the animals on day 6.  At first glance this does seem like a problem until you reread 2:19

(19)  And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.

He just forms one of each beast of the field and fowl of the air so that Adam can look at them and name them.  Adam saw God form the creatures right before his very eyes, never could Adam have doubted what his own eyes had seen.  One man was witness to the power of God’s awesome might, majesty and wisdom as he watch the animals and birds spring fully formed from the dust and he named them all, God tasked him with that job, giving him a moment of input into the world in which he had been placed.

But we see in verse 20 that after God has created before Adam one of every cattle, beast and bird (the other one was created prior to this in the rest of the world and I imagine that they were soon happily united to begin fill God’s decree that they multiply and fill the earth) man is still alone for none of God’s wondrous creatures was suitable as a helper for man.  So in verse 21 God performs the first surgery, albeit a heavenly one, when He causes a deep sleep to fall over Adam and removes one of his ribs to form his helper, woman.  That’s right woman was not an entirely new creation but was formed from God’s highest creation, a part of it, extension of it.  Woman was created for man, from man – she was totally part of him and thus the perfect partner for him, a true help meet.  Adam wakes realizes what God has done and blessed him with and thus names this new person in his world woman.

(23)  And Adam 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.

As a result of this we see the heavenly decreed formation of marriage, God’s plan for man to multiply and fill the earth subduing, caring for it.  He did not wish for man to be alone and he knew that in order for man to fulfill that decree he must have a mate perfectly suited to him, someone who was made specifically to compliment man, to fit to him as one.

(24)  Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.

Gen 2&24.jpg

I find it amazing that God, the Creator, the great I Am, the Lord loved that first man, His creation, so much that he not only made an entire universe, bigger than we can ever imagine, but He took the time to plant a garden in the man’s sight and create one of every beast and fowl for man to name thus ensuring that man, that Adam could say with all confidence and surety that “In the beginning God…”

 

 

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