The Garden

Adam is here. God placed him on the earth, the only human being. Adam must have just stood there, looking around in wonder at all the things he saw.    He had no family, no friends, no parents or childhood.  He had to learn all on his own what it meant to be a human. He was a perfect man, there was no sin in the world at that time so he wouldn’t have been afraid. Indeed, all the creatures around him were harmless to him and to each other.  The lions weren’t interested in eating the lambs, the eagle flying overhead did not even think about trying to catch the rabbit and eat it.  Apparently, at this point in time, every creature that God had created was given the seed-bearing plants and the fruit of the tree’s to eat. There is nothing in the story that God indicated that certain animals would eat certain other animals or even that Adam would eat animals.

Once God had finished his creation of Adam, and Adam had looked around a bit, God moved him to a garden that he had planted in the east, a garden that was called Eden.  This was a beautiful garden that was full of tree’s that looked good to eat from.  It was all available for Adam to eat, with two notable exceptions.  In the middle of the garden were two special trees, the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  God specifically told Adam he could not eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil.  He said that if he did he would die.  He didn’t specifically say that he couldn’t eat from the tree of life.  It could be speculated that God actually intended for Adam to eat from that tree because he wanted Adam to live eternally.  Hold that thought, we will return to it in a bit.

At this point, God gave Adam a job to do.  He was to give names to all of the creatures.  The livestock, the fish, the birds, and the wild animals.  God brought them all to Adam to receive a name.  It was a big job and God knew that Adam would need a helper. Adam was still a perfect man, the absence of sin would have meant that he was not aware of loneliness.  Being alone was all he knew, there was no other alternative, and that was fine and normal for him.  But God, in his love and care decided that it was not good for Adam to be alone on this magnificent earth.  So to make sure he would not experience loneliness and to give Adam a helper in this huge animal-naming project he caused Adam to go into a deep sleep so that He could perform a little surgery.  He made an incision in Adams side, took out one of his ribs and then closed up the wound perfectly.  He then used this rib to create one of his most stunning creations, the woman.   God took the woman to Adam and Adam said, this creation I am going to name woman because she was created from the bones and the flesh of man.  I am sure he was thrilled with this beautiful companion.  At this point the man starts being referred to in Genesis as Adam.  It is uncertain whether it was intended to be a personal name. Adam is just the English translation of the Hebrew word for the man. 

Adam and the woman (she has not been named Eve yet) got along perfectly right from the beginning.  They had a totally open, honest and innocent relationship with no hint of shame.  They were able to run around the garden naked, eating fruit from the trees, playing with the various animals and enjoying life as the only two humans on earth.  At some point, Adam must have discussed the rules of the garden with the woman.  Remember, he had been given complete freedom to tend and care for the garden. He was told that he could eat from any tree except for the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  So the woman knew of this restriction even though she likely hadn’t been told directly by God as Adam had.

Now the story starts to go downhill. Though there were surely many serpents or snakes in the garden, one in particular had become the earthly body inhabited by Lucifer (Satan, the devil) 

Yes, There Is a God and He Made You

As promised, here is Chapter 1 of my new book Being Real, published chapter by chapter until finished, then to be published in paperback

Let’s start with the basics.  Either there is a God or there isn’t. “In the beginning God created…” (Gen 1:1)  That is a big statement. “God created the heavens and earth – all you see, all you don’t see. Earth was a soup of nothingness, a bottomless emptiness, an inky blackness.” That’s Gen 1:1 in The Message translation. Now I know that it is modern to believe that there is no God responsible for creation. Most scientists would have us believe that sometime in the ancient past there was an accidental ‘big bang’ that ultimately resulted in an elemental life form. Then, somehow a series of random environmental circumstances caused that piece of ‘life’ in the primordial ooze to start evolving into more complex life forms until, wow, a human!  So, in that belief system I am not a creation of an almighty powerful God but simply fortunate that all of my amphibious, reptilian, avian, simian ancestors were in the right place at the right time to somehow morph into a higher life form, eventually leading to a human being standing up on two legs and thinking for himself.  I’m sorry but that version just requires too much faith. Rather, I choose to exercise a lesser amount of faith and just take the Bible at its word. God decided He wanted an earth so he made one. He thought about how he wanted to populate it and ended up making elephants, lions, dogs, monkeys and even bacteria and insects.  When that wasn’t enough He decided that there needed to be someone to look out for all these creatures so He made Adam and Eve and caused them to have the ability to reproduce themselves.   He literally took a handful of dirt from the ground and formed it with His hands and breathed life into the first man, Adam.  Then, after deciding that Adam couldn’t make it on his own (sorry men), He took a rib from Adam and formed a woman named Eve.  Now there were living souls on Earth, in the garden. Hence, in 1946 here comes me, an ancestor of many generations of the created Adam & Eve. Consider carefully, which version of how you got here is easier to believe?

So who created God? Where did He come from?  This is a question that is often posed by non-believers.  I have a well thought out answer that should be adequate for our purposes – I don’t know!  Uh-oh, does that mean that the whole belief in creation falls apart?  Not at all, somewhere along the line we have to exercise faith in something.  In the big-bang/evolutionary model, can they tell us where those first particles came from that miraculously banged up against each other and created the universe? Can they tell us how somehow an inert piece of ‘stuff’ suddenly took on life? No!  If God has to have a provable beginning, then why don’t those swirling masses of gas and particles have to have a provable beginning?  I just find it a lot easier to believe as the Bible says in Revelations 1:8, “I am the one who is, who always was, and who is still to come…” (New Living Translation)  I don’t have to understand where God came from, it is enough for me to see how everything around me points to the fact that it must be true, God just is and He made all of this!