Now THIS is probably the most important objective and subjective truth that any believer can ever become aware of after being regenerated by the new birth. After one is born again he needs more than anything else to be motivated by the love of God in Christ.
Consider this fact: most books have an introduction and a conclusion. This is also true concerning the Bible. The Bible of course is the God breathed scripture consisting of 66 books, 39 Old Testament, and 27 New Testament books. You may not think these books have anything to do with one another but they build upon one another. In a sense it is considered to be all one book. Isaiah says to read in the book of the Lord. This is found in Isaiah 34:16:
16 "Search from the book of the LORD, and read: Not one of these shall fail; Not one shall lack her mate. For My mouth has commanded it, and His Spirit has gathered them."
Obviously he was not referring merely to his own prophetic writings but to the writings of other books of the Bible as well. To continue: it has been said very well that if you want to get an overview of a book you should start by reading the introduction or prologue, etc. first then read the conclusion or epilogue. By doing this you will get an overview of the subject of the book and you will see where it starts and where its going. Then after you read through the book you can get an even clearer "bird's eye view" by reading the introduction and conclusion again.
Many readers of the Bible have gotten lost in the forest because they do not know the ultimate goal of the Bible. When you know the ultimate goal or consummation of scripture then you have an inkling of the ultimate goal of God and what His aims and desires are. From this standpoint you can form some idea of what his will is. Otherwise you could get "lost in the forest." In other words if you are in the middle of the forest somewhere (like starting your Christian life by reading the book of Romans for instance) without looking at the map from a birds eye view you will get lost! You need to know where you are in relation to where the starting point on the map and the destination point. If you didn't take the time to look at the map then you could easily get on some winding side-road somewhere in the forest on some tangent or even out on a limb somewhere.
The words: "the eternal purpose" is only used once in the entire Bible. But those words denote the fact that there is an ultimate aim or an ultimate intention in the plan of God. It is my belief that the majority of the divisions in today's Christianity result from the problem of having different goals and sources from which those goals came. We need to see the beginning and the end and then draw a straight line between the two or we will continue to waste such precious time. If we do not see what God's eternal purpose is and have other purposes in our heart or other ideas and concepts of what God's ultimate purpose is contrary to what it really is then we are going to be divided. This is a matter of grave importance today or any day for that matter! There has never been a time in which we have needed the outpouring which according to Acts takes place when the believers are in one mind, one place and in one accord, than today. Praying together in such a situation brings a veritable Pentecost.
Since I have already answered the question as to what the introduction and conclusion of the Bible are the obvious next question you may ask is why do you single out those 4 chapters? The word "Genesis" means "beginnings" or in other words: the seeds or genes of things which are to develop take root and grow into a harvest later on. The seeds of nearly every spiritual reality and truth can be found in Genesis. And most of all of these is harvested in Revelation. Along with this fact we also should pay attention to the fact that there is no sin in these four chapters. Now there is mention in Rev 21 & 22 of the evil things outside the city in the outer darkness of the eternal trash can of the universe of course. However it must be noted that these things are mentioned after the fact of Rev. 20:15. It is there that we find that all things from death and all things from Hades had already been disposed of in the Lake of Fire and nothing of that element can ever enter the realms of life and light ever again! Do you notice something here? The very last sentence just before Rev. 21 & 22 speaks of the ending of sin. Whereas the very first sentence after Gen. 1 & 2 speaks of the first beginning of sin or the introduction of it to our race. This was not done by accident but was planned by the very Spirit of God Who breathed the scriptures onto the printed page through those who wrote the holy scriptures. My point is? Genesis 1 & 2 and Revelation 21 & 22 contain the seeds and the harvest of the spiritual things that are absolutely pure and positive ONLY!!! There are many items that are the very heart throb of God that you can see the beginning and consummation thereof. Now, doesn't this make sense? Do we not need such a telescope into the heart of God that we may see what is His ultimate goal and plan? Surely we do. This is what some so-called "ministries" today do not want to face: namely, that there was some meaning to life BEFORE sin entered the scene and there will be also AFTER it's gone! So much so in fact that we will need an eternity and will not even begin to scratch the surface of exhausting all the wonders of the life in store for us! And for Him! What glory and beauty awaits Him! And here's my point: my prayer for you is that you may catch at least a glimpse of that BEAUTIFUL girl He is so madly in love with that you may get the "click" of realization as to why the Lord Jesus was willing to go to Calvary and that you may know the real reason why for Him it is worth it all!! She is worth it all!!! Well worth it all!! PRAISE THE LORD!!
And just who is this most lovely she, pray tell, and what is her name? The New Jerusalem is the subject, the very last and greatest subject of the Bible. And here I must say that though I agree with many others that JESUS CHRIST is THE main subject of the Bible that does not change what I have said about the New Jerusalem as Paul said that the glory of the man is the woman and she is the glory of human kind so the New Jerusalem -- She is the outshining and ultimate glory of the Lamb, the Christ! Not only is this the great (the greatest!) subject of the last two chapters, which fact should tell us it is more important to God than anything else He could ever reveal, but it is the consummation of the divine revelation in the Bible! It is the harvest of all the seeds planted in the first 2 chapters completely grown and matured. This is called by John in Rev. 21:9 & 10, "the bride, the Lamb's wife." Of course, the seed forms in Genesis of these things were real things of the material realm and pictures of the spiritual whereas the writings of John in revelation are material pictures but obviously talking of spiritual things. If you believe that the wife of the Lamb of God is a material city made of literal material gold then the husband is also white with white wool and has four legs and a tail because he is a material lamb! C'mon now, let's get real! Christ being called the Lamb of God is because He was the sacrifice for our sins. So then what is the meaning of the New Jerusalem? She is us! SHE IS THE MAIN ELEMENT OF THE ETERNAL PURPOSE AND SHE IS THE MAIN REASON WHY JESUS CHRIST BECAME THE LAMB! This is proved by Paul's words in Ephesians 5: 23-25:
"For the husband is the head of the wife, and Christ also is the head of the church, being himself the savior of the body. 24. But as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives also be to their husbands in everything. 25. Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself up for it;"
Here we see that the ecclesia or rather "us" stands in the same relation to Christ as wives to their husbands, vice versa. Well then, if she is the people of God in Ephesians 5, she is also the people of God in Revelation 21 & 22! God is not into divorce. He is not interested in divorcing His people for some material city of gold!!!! My conclusion to this matter is???? The New Jerusalem is NOT a material composition or building or place! It is spiritual. And can be called "it: because there is the aspect and reality of the city of God but on the other hand she is the realest she, a real live person that has ever been!! And she can rightly be called she because she is the living counterpart and bride of the Lamb and this living one was taken out of His very life and nature!
Now you are going to ask what is meant by "taken out of life and nature" and how such a thing could be. Here we must refer to Biblical truth concerning who Adam is in Biblical interpretation in relationship to Christ. It is in Romans chapter 5 that we find out the deep meaning of Adam and how to interpret his story to find the deeper truths of Christ that pertain to these four chapters concerning the eternal purpose of God. Romans 5:14: "Nevertheless death reigned from Adam until Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the likeness of Adam's transgression, who is a figure of him that was to come." Now if Adam was the figure of Christ Who was to come then we can realize that Adam's story contains a meaning deeper than we might have noticed at first glance. We can also ask: "if Adam is a prefigure of Christ then who is Eve a prefigure of? But even as Paul mentions the relationship between Adam and Eve as having to do with this great mysterious fact of Christ and the ecclesia so we should also look into these things even as Paul did. These are deep mysteries indeed.
Right here we need to take a minute to expose a very damaging false teaching that has seriously damaged God's purpose today and caused His viewpoint to remain a hidden viewpoint. There are many false teachings being discussed and attacked today but much of this attack only barely touches on the branches and twigs of the problem of truth and does not lay the ax of the truth and reality of God to the ROOT of the tree. Our hearts and our heart's desires and motifs are at the root and are the things that really make us or break us. If our purposes are the same as God's purposes and we have drank deeply of His heart's desire and are in deep sympathy with the Lord we shall be united and shall be OK. However if we have some other goal other than His goal due to a lack of revelation concerning the eternal purpose, we shall be distracted and divided.
So what is this false teaching which has been an element of extensive damages? You may be surprised at what I'm about to expose. There have been many men that have taught that John 14:1-3 concerning the many mansions is that these mansions are huge houses up in the sky and that the Lord's going in this passage is His ascension. They go on to say that His coming again to "receive you to Myself" is the 2nd coming of Christ in our future. This is false! If you'll take the time to read the context of these 3 chapters: John 14, 15 & 16, you will see that His going away from His disciples was His death. His return would be His resurrection and His abiding with them and making His abode with them was the real meaning of the so-called "mansions" which in the Greek is really "abodes." WE are the abodes of God! We are the rooms in the Father's house! And Christ went to the cross to prepare a place inside Himself built together as living stones in His abode as branches of the Vine of this abode where we need to abide. We are living stones by virtue of His coming forth in His resurrection life and infusing us with that life, that new life! Do you see why I have mentioned this false teaching? It is just one more pea in Satan's pod that casts another shadow upon our minds to cast veil after veil upon our understanding of the New Jerusalem. It is not a physical place to go when you die! (Maybe Paradise is)… rather it is a heavenly, spiritual reality within us right now!
There are many aspects of things that can be found in the first two chapters of Genesis which can also be found in the last two chapters of Revelation that I consider extremely important as items that need to be revealed to you by the Spirit of God and I hope you would at least spend some time in the Word, petitioning the Lord to have mercy on you and shine His light upon you that you would have a real revelation of Christ in these things. There are possibly many other items and even countless items that are found in both passages so possibly I have missed a few. However, these I would consider the most important. I would entitle this list as the "Elements of the Garden and City."
This must be explained, as it is not easily seen. You may find this hard to believe but it has taken centuries for the seers, sent ones, prophets and many other men of God to put these things together in the Word of God and to actually have come to see these passages as clearly as we see them today.
Now this is really exciting. There is a couple in both these passages. Adam and Eve in Genesis 1 & 2 are a picture of the Lamb and the New Jerusalem in Revelation 21 & 22. But how are they related? If you look at the story of Adam and Eve and put all the pieces of the picture together as I have listed above you just may get into the right position and angle to where at least a ray of Heavenly Sonlight may beam your way! Let's try to assemble this puzzle. Genesis chapter 1 is so different from Genesis chapter 2 in that the first chapter is unbelievably majestic and flows in logical sequence. However Genesis 2 is like a disjointed cartoon. 1st there is a recount of creation, then a mentioning of God's rest and a more detailed version moving back in time of just how Adam was made from the ground (which ground by the way signifies resurrection) and breathed into. Then it speaks of the 2 trees in the midst of the garden and their names.. After this it mentions the river breaking into four heads (and who knows why!?!!). All of a sudden it talks about the gold of that land and briefly mentions there is also there the bdellium and onyx stone. Again why??? What was that all about? Has anyone asked these questions? Thank God, yes! After this there is mention of Adam's employment, but no Eve. Then comes God's commandment concerning one of the trees and His sanction following. After this God says there is something not good! That man is alone is not good! This is before sin and there's something not good! Wow! Now that's significant and that should at least tell you something. If you add the fact of this "not good" with the fact of His one and only "very good!" in Genesis 1 THAT should tell you something: namely that the "very good" came after Eve was joined to her husband and man was completed. But notice the crazy order here. First He mentions this not good in seeming conference in the Godhead and then goes on to do something else! He gives man a special job of naming all the animals and then puts him to sleep, opens his side, takes out his rib and makes Eve with it! Then the most insightful principles of marriage ever spoken upon which almost everything else as far as good counsel for marriage can be based is spoken there in 3 principles which could be summed up in 3 words: 1. Leave, 2. Cleave and 3. Unite. Let's face it, there could never be an old testament person who could ever figure this order out. But in this New Testament age it has become clearly revealed that this order is precisely the breathing of God breathing out His Word trying to convey to us His living Word through the written scriptures. So let's deal with some of these facts in the order in which they are written.
1st, let's cover some facts in Genesis 1:27-31, " 27. And 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 birds of the heavens, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth. 29. And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb yielding seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for food: 30. and to every beast of the earth, and to every bird of the heavens, and to everything that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for food: and it was so. 31. And God saw everything that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day. "
1st , for everything God made He said it was good but when He made man and notice the statement "male and female made He them," He said it was "very good." Why is this? Of course it is because man is God's crowning creation and the very center of His purpose and without whom His purpose could not be fulfilled. But this lame answer is not sufficient to show us what that purpose is. However, if I repeat the words as they are written verbatim in this passage enough times maybe you will see something. What are we talking about first? We were made in God's image and likeness. Surely there is purpose here. There was no other item in God's creation made in His image. There were many things made after certain kinds, for example there is the canine family, the feline family, the fish type of creature with its gills for getting air from water, etc., but only man was made according to GOD's kind! It has been said that as a glove was made in the image of a hand to contain the hand, so man was made in the image of God to contain God. It is obvious here that no other being or creature in heaven above or earth beneath can be a partaker of God's very life and nature but that is what John 3:16's precious promise is to those who choose to be the "whosoever" that believes in Christ: everlasting life. And that word for life is Zoe in the Greek, which means the divine life which is eternal, uncreated and flawless. Only human beings have the capacity of the human spirit to receive the divine life with all of its innate capacities and capabilities into themselves! No other species (not even angels!!!) possess the capacity for such a reception! Wow! We don't really even begin to know what capabilities we have lost in the fall (even though Adam had not even received the life of God at that time)or what we still have even though we are fallen, much less the unfathomable wonders of the very life of God! Neither do we know too much about what we will be as God's redeemed in the coming glorification!! Though it is true that we have been made in our fallen condition a lower life form in this present age than the angels are right now, the day will come when they won't have anything on us!! Hallelujah! God has such a high life and position for the redeemed that you cannot even begin to imagine it! Hallelujah!
Wow! It sure was hard to not get onto that tangent! But now we are going to touch on something even FAR more glorious!!!!!! And this is our subject. Now, what could be more glorious than our glorification, exaltation and beautification in the future? Oh! Just the real meaning of what the reality of being in the image of God is. That's all!!!! Let's take a look at this: "in the image of God created He him, male and female created He them." Wow! "created He him…them" "created He him ……. them!" I'm confused! Did He create him or them? "created He him, male and female…" Hmmm, I thought the him was a male. Have you ever considered this? So why are WE humans made in the image of God, but the angels are not? Let's take a look at the main difference between human beings and angelic beings. It seems the main difference is that the angels habitat is heavenly or spiritual and man's is merely physical. But even that is not the main difference, nor is it even TRUE !!!! Man has an element that no other creature on earth possesses and even for a time (seemingly?) God Himself did not possess. Man had a spirit and a body! Now of course God WAS Spirit but He was not yet flesh (the story of the 3 men visiting Abraham may prove me wrong of course since the Lord is not limited to time like we are) and blood so He was spiritual only and had not yet caught up to man. So it is not true that man cannot touch the spiritual realm.
Let me get to the point: the angels were all single! That's the way God made everything in the spiritual realm! However, seemingly, almost ALL of the creatures in the physical realm were made in twos, pairs and there was seen (with probably astonishment, much wonder and amazement) by the angels many different kinds of creatures with the aspect of male and female, two of a kind with the ability to pro-create and multiply and increase their species (you see! Us men are not the only pro-creators in the universe!)! So, all the creatures in the spiritual realm are single but in the material realm are made in couples! WOW! What does this mean?
So it seems we've gotten off of the subject of what is the image of God, but hear this: first came the him, then the them! But before Adam was them (even though in a sense the them was already inside him so there was the them), he was the him ….. and he was alone! Now HERE'S a big question: why did not God just make Adam and Eve at the same time, the way He made the rest of the creatures on earth in their pairs?????? It was because Adam was different! HE WAS MADE IN THE IMAGE AND LIKENESS OF GOD HIMSELF!!!!!!! And what is the image of God? Here it is again: " In the image of God made He him, male and female made He them." So when God made him He made them because the them (even all of them, even you!) was him and was in him! When Adam was made, YOU were made! Somewhere in the intricate chromosomes of Adam's being the blueprint for you were in there. In the very being of Adam, we all were there! Oh, Lord, I worship You! We were all there! We all came from there and that is a fact you cannot deny! If you still don't get it repeat out loud these words over and over again till the light turns on: "in the image of God made He him; male and female made He them" Go ahead…..Ok ………………………….. do you see it?!!!!? " In the image of God made He him, male and female made He them." " In the image of God made He him, male and female made He them." " In the image of God made He him, male and female made He them." " In the image of God made He him, male and female made He them." " In the image of God made He him, male and female made He them." What about now? ………….. Ok I'll tell you:
When the angels saw their Creator, they saw One who was single, such as they themselves were but deep, so deep inside, our Lord was different, so very different. He was and is a forever young Lover desperately yearning and searching, longing to love, longing to outpour that love and have it returned. Now should not the worship of the angels be enough for the deep exchange of love to fulfill His heart? That is impossible!!!!!! Why? It is because His very nature and makeup cannot be satisfied with this. Because
because just because His nature is
different from the angels, and here we are entering upon holy ground and we should probably take the very shoes off of our feet as we say this: the nature, the very DNA and image of God is male and female! " In the image of God made He him, male and female made He them." Male and female made He them! Male and female made He them! But when He made them from the ground there was only a lonely he! Here it is: (remove the shoes from your feet) DEEP INSIDE YOUR LORD, YHVH, ADONAI, THE ALMIGHTY, THE ETERNAL AND MOST HOLY ONE THERE WAS A BEAUTIFUL GIRL! Bachelor hood is not His thing! Even though He's done a better and more patient job at even that than anyone else ever has.
At this point I must uncover a lie which has been used of Satan to torment certain individuals. When we are looking at types and shadows of Christ we must not push these truths too far and apply them back to their allegories too much as many have done with this one in saying that human beings were made for marriage and that you are somehow a second class citizen of heaven if you are single. That is NOT true! Man was not made for marriage, marriage was made for man and though it is true that it is God's will probably for the majority of His own to be married, sometimes for some people it is not. There is a mistaken doctrine being spoken these days to say you are only 50% and only with your mate will you become 100%. That's a lie! You were made in the image of God and you are already complete in Christ! If you marry maybe it will become 200% but that's not a Bible teaching either! OK let's get back.
Of course there was a big problem for Jehovah to get His Bride. She would have to match Him! She would have to have the very same life and nature as what He has! How in the universe or even beyond the universe could God accomplish such a thing? It is almost inconceivable. Could even the mind of God conceptualize it? My beloved brothers and dear sisters: God has always held this within, even to infinitude of eternal ages past and past and past farther than you could imagine. It has always been there. This longing; this searching; this travail; this agony. Agony???????????? ??????????????? Before the fall? Do you really mean there was actually something that was not good before the fall?
Well ……….. have you ever considered the awful suffering conveyed in the verse as revealed in holy writ in Revelation 13:8? This took place in the ages before even the foundation of the world, namely, the Lamb of Calvary was slain. Oh! How could this awful thing be? What dark mystery is this? Could this possibly have taken place? Before the foundation, before even creation was there…pain? Could this possibly have something to do with this beautiful girl this Lamb was love sick over? If you're going to pick up stones to stone me, do it now! Only a man who has seen her beauty could suffer for Christ's name's sake. Only one who knows the Divine Romance can get stoned like Paul did and go right back into the same city that stoned him (he was stoned!) and preach again! What a mad man! Only a Jesus Christ Who was blindly and madly in love with this most beautiful girl could endure the ignominy, the horror, the shame, the utter lowest bloody ugliness of the most dreadful torture of Golgotha!
"It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him." …. Surely, it is not good for man to be alone! Of course now that there are so many people companionship does not come merely from marriage. But he was created with longings and desires that mirrored the very image and likeness of his Creator, God! That lonely man was made in the very spitting image of …. "you've got to be kidding, right!??" OK; Now it seems we are ready to look at Genesis finally in the exact order in which it was written:
Now we can approach Genesis 2, hopefully with the proper "infrared vision" so to speak. Genesis 2 begins with the finishing of the first creation. After the job was finished God rested on the seventh day. Now this is no problem if you don't take the time to think about it. But it seems that the events concerning God taking the rib out of Adam's side and producing Eve, his dear wife, seemed to take place after the 6 day creation was accomplished. And the truth of God's Word declares that the first creation was finished on the sixth day! Now, you may say that God actually did bring Eve forth from Adam's side on the 6th day and there seems to be some evidence for this plus the fact that Genesis 2 could possibly just be a recount of things that took place on that day. However, I don't believe she had appeared yet based on the following: 1. The scriptures seem to place special emphasis on the fact of God having finished His creation work and this is offset by the ordination of the seventh day of rest. This seems to stress the fact that Adam had a time of loneliness and had some time for all of this to sink in. 2. There does not seem to be enough time for Adam to do the tremendous task of naming all of the creatures including birds, birds, fish and all the various reptiles, etc. especially considering that there were species at that time that are extinct right now. Right now there are 9703 known species of birds alone. Since the 1600's there have been 115 species of birds that have gone extinct. Altogether the count, including fish, mammals, reptiles and insects (if indeed Adam went that far: the Genesis record does not mention fish) is 1,072,300 million known species (-fish) have been identified by science. It is estimated that by the year 2050 1/4 of those species will go extinct. The extinction rate has gone way up of course due to our modern (yeah, blame it on man) world but my point is that today's science could not possibly know how many species have gone extinct since 6000 years ago. They only have some knowledge before the 1600's and their tracing ability even back to that date is questionable. It is a known fact that in the unsearchably rich Amazon Rain forest new species of animals are still being discovered! Even considering the fact that God supernaturally brought all of the animals to Adam such as He later did for Noah, still ... Even if you consider that his brain was sharper before the fall ...still it seems preposterous. Actually you could bring the number of animals down to their grass roots as it must have been for Noah to 35,000 which would be the number that everything we know about today could have multiplied back into what we have in the present world again. Consider this fact: before the fall the number of species on earth was complete: there were NO extinct species. At least you have to consider that Adam took some real time at it enough to have some fun! You better believe it!
My point in saying all of this has to do with the heart of God. For God to obtain a Bride is not an easy thing. If the Lord God were to actually have a mate, she would have to have the same life and nature as He, but did not Peter say we are partakers of the divine nature? The bottom line is that in creating Adam in his own image Adam's "out of Adam" or his "she" was also created in him. And as there was a longing and a measure of difficulty in obtaining a bride for the Lord, so there was the same case scenario for the one made in his image and likeness. This is why I believe that the naming of the animals made an impression on Adam. The impression made was that none of these creatures were "like" him but all of them had mates and he didn't. This opens up a wide realm of the revelation of the reality inside the heart of your Lord, but here I must refer you to what I believe is the greatest work ever written in the 20th century: "The Divine Romance" by Gene Edwards. This book is considered one of three written in the 20th century that could be considered in a class by themselves as Christian literature not merely writings. But there is more to it than this: this brother was obviously inside the heart of God when he wrote and it seems as if he were actually in sync with the heartbeat of God as he wrote. I refer you to that book for far more insight into this subject. In fact in this case I would get on my hands and knees and beg you to read it. It is a must read. OK now I must try to take Genesis 2 in order. It is obvious to me that the inspiring Spirit inspired the idea of the completion of creation as the first basic thought of this chapter. I will explain what I believe is the divine reason for all of this in the further progressions of this chapter. You can almost made to feel a satisfying sense of completion as you read the account of His day of rest.
Next, it seems I am wrong about Eve actually coming around later because there is a recount of the "history" of creation beginning with the plant life, more details of how Adam was actually made from the ground with the very breath of God, etc. BUT if you read the actual sequence of events there is quite a gap between Adam's creation and Eve's building (building is the literal Hebrew word used). These things include Adam tilling the garden, receiving instructions concerning the tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, and his big job of naming the animals. Inserted in this record are some very important elements that later become the exact constituents of the real building, the final and greatest building of God: the tree of life, the river, the gold, bdellium and onyx stone. It is interesting that these things are mentioned BETWEEN the arrival of Adam and the arrival of Eve because she was built! And building is what these things are all about! In fact this is about that which is MORE IMPORTANT THAN ANYTHING ELSE TO GOD!!!! We have got to get clear on this! Let's take a further look.
"8 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 the LORD God made every tree grow that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The tree of life was also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. 10 Now a river went out of Eden to water the garden, and from there it parted and became four river heads. 11 The name of the first is Pishon; it is the one which skirts the whole land of Havilah, where there is gold. 12 And the gold of that land is good. Bdellium and the onyx stone are there. 13 The name of the second river is Gihon; it is the one which goes around the whole land of Cush. 14 The name of the third river is Hiddekel; it is the one which goes toward the east of Assyria. The fourth river is the Euphrates."
Let's see, in John 15 Jesus calls Himself the vine and in John 14 (and elsewhere) He calls Himself the life. So the tree of life is Jesus Christ! What about the talk of the river breaking into four heads. Well, since both the tree of life and the river of the water of life are also both mentioned together in Rev. 22: 1 & 2, these must be significant. It was the Lord Jesus again Who must have considered these 2 things extremely important because He spoke of rivers of living water as springing forth from the believer whosoever would come to Him to drink. This must be extremely vital for drinking is also mentioned in John 4. But in Genesis 2 there are 3 elements mentioned parallel to this food and water. Hmmmm. John went on to say in John 7 that Jesus was referring to the Spirit Who was not yet because Jesus was not yet glorified. What is this? Well this is not so simple. It was Paul who explained it in I Corinthians 15:45b:
This is the chapter on resurrection of course. Of course there was the Holy Spirit before Christ's crucifixion and resurrection but not the same! The term "the Spirit" has never been seen before this part of the Bible. Go ahead! Read it for yourself and you will see. When the term "the Spirit" is seen in the Bible it refers to the Wonderful Christ Who became in order to give us Himself in all His sin killing, new life-giving power and divine nature! Now, we even have His up-raised new creation, perfect human nature within us! The power of His death and the renewing, transforming healing and enlivening quickening of His resurrection are now new elements of "the Spirit" which "the Spirit of God" did not contain before His resurrection! Praise the Lord! And how do we partake of this? By eating and drinking! How? "Come to Me and drink" Jesus said. And what is the result? Now a river went out of Eden to water the garden, and from there it parted and became four river heads. 11 The name of the first is Pishon; it is the one which skirts the whole land of Havilah, where there is gold. 12 And the gold of that land is good. Bdellium and the onyx stone are there. OK. So I have already spoken of gold as one of the main elements of building as spoken to Moses in the passages of Exodus concerning the building of the wilderness tabernacle which the writer of Hebrews seems to be quite taken up with to the point that he says he doesn't really have the time to expound these things such as he would have liked to. So it is obvious why gold and these other 2 elements are mentioned here in genesis because when we eat Christ and drink Christ we take Him in as not only our life but our life supply AND SO THE DIVINE NATURE THROUGH FAITH WHICH IS WHAT GOLD REFERS TO IN THE BIBLE GROWS WITHIN US!! THIS IS GLORIOUS!!!
So what does Bdellium refer to? It refers to a gum or resin found in certain trees. The tree must be cut to get the gum out and is a shiny substance. Many writers and students of the Bible have compared the substance to pearls. Bdellium is even said to be pearls in some cases Pearls are produced by the same method. The oyster has to be cut and it produces a shiny substance around the wound, which has been produced by sand. Nelson's Bible dictionary gives this definition:
Bdellium. A substance found in Havilah in Arabia, a land noted for its precious stones and aromatic gum. With the same color as manna, bdellium was considered to be a gum resin (Num. 11:7).
In the Numbers passage, the word for bdellium is rendered as bdellium (REB) and resin (NIV) by some translations. But in Genesis 2:12, bdellium was associated with gold and therefore it was considered a precious stone. Some scholars suggest that bdellium jewels were pearls from the Persian Gulf.
The meaning here is that as we come to Christ to partake of Him as food and drink we are like the irritating sand in the oyster and the resin or protective substance forms around the grain so as to protect itself. This substance is compared with Christ making us new within Himself by resurrection. We wounded Him at His heart by our sin but the flow from His side turns the horrible sharp grain of sand into a precious pearl. You can see by this a wound to the side and something wonderful produced out of this TWICE in the 2nd chapter of the Bible! This must really be important! Now, I have a question. If this is so important that God mentions it twice at the beginnings of His Word, how come so little attention is given to these things from today's so called preachers? Of course in the New Jerusalem gold is the street (just one street? Yep!!). And pearls are the gates of the city (which are also the sent ones or the 12 disciples, by the way) for an entrance (which is also the meaning of the pillars in Solomon's temple which were the supports of the entrance).
What about precious stones? This subject is mentioned many times in scripture. Take I Cor. 3: 11-13: "1 For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, 13 each one's work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one's work, of what sort it is. " One thing is for sure, this is something you surely want in your life because once it is there it is something solid and can never go away! What is it's meaning. Science can tell you plainly. Precious stones are transformed materials. They start out as one element and through a process become another element or combination of elements through various stressful, material altering, pressurizing and temporizing conditions. In order for precious stones to be produced there usually must be years and even centuries of pressure and heat. This is why they are precious. Consider the diamond for one example. What did it used to be at one time? Black coal! Coal is not only black and dirty but it's dirt rubs off on other things! II Cor 3:18 contains one of the elements that is also necessary to be transformed and that is to actively behold the Lord in a loving seeking kind of a way. Surely this is something powerful, for both Isaiah and John the Baptist tell us that to look to Him will even bring salvation. John the Baptist said "Behold the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world. How sad it is that there is little or no preaching these days on beholding Christ which equals contemplation.
Contemplation experience is what really changes you inwardly and the Lord's grace will also operate along with it and start the transforming experience. However, I will not be dishonest with you concerning the other means the Lord uses to transform us living stones to cause us to become precious stones fit to be built into His City. It is sufferings, trials, and fiery tribulations in a fiery furnace. Not all the things we pass through during the journey of our Christian life will be fun or easy. If you compare the record of Genesis 2 with revelation 21, there seems to be only one kind of precious stone to start with but in revelation 21 there are 12 meaning there are many situations ages special situations and developments of the unsearchable character and unsearchable riches of the virtues of Christ and the fruit of the Spirit that it seems to take on many beauteous colors when finished. At one point the writer says the City is like one awesome precious stone looking exactly like the precious One Who looks like a jasper stone upon the throne. John even goes so far as to say she is a precious precious stone that is crystal clear! Through her can be clearly seen her glorious Lord Who lives and shines out from within! I have met brothers whom have had visions of this city and I have asked "what were the walls made of? Their answer was? Light! That's right; if the Light of the world is shining through that which is crystal clear then who will be seen? Will it be the one through whom the light is shining or the light?
Now here is the point of these three elements in Gen. 2:12. These and ONLY these three elements are the makeup and material with which the New Jerusalem, the wife of the Lamb is built with. Nothing else! In Revelation 17:4 it says: 4 The woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet, and adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls, having in her hand a golden cup full of abominations and the filthiness of her fornication. Now this verse refers to the false church, the mystery Babylon, the harlot, which represents something God hates because she mixes politics, commerce, and other abominable idolatries and religious things with the things of God. So mixed with other things you see that she is adorned with the three items: "gold and precious stones and pearls" but he is not built with them and them alone. What about our work today? What are we building with? Is it something out of eating and drinking Christ? Is it that which flows forth or has already flowed forth from His side or is it something of our natural life and birth; something out of the thought of man? At this point God showed man the 2 trees. The principle of the 2 trees is obvious. Christ as the tree of life so we eat Him and He assimilates into the very fiber of our being and we grow in his life and nature and even live on the strength of this food day by day. So the principle here is dependence upon God and upon His life within. The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil on the other hand is something done outside of, without and against God or in the principle of independence. This again tells us that the result of the corruption of death will come from independence upon the Lord and that which is precious comes from the Tree of Life. At this point the Lord said " It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.( )" But the question I ask again is, "so why does He not do something immediately? Why does He interject (or at least Moses does in his story line) the naming of the animals here? Surely if the events were not in this exact order and Eve indeed was built on the 6th day, still the Holy Spirit inspired this order in his breathing this order through the inspired writer of holy writ. I believe the reason to be found in verse 20: " So Adam gave names to all cattle, to the birds of the air, and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper comparable to him. ( )" It was here many believe that during this what I believe was a big job, Adam realized that all the animals coming to him all had mates but as they came he also realized there was no one who could be a mate for him. This is really an exaltation of what the human nature is. The key here is that none of the animals out of thousands of species had his life and nature! There was no one like him or suited to be his counterpart or help meet on the earth. Possibly he began feeling his loneliness, for that is what it was. When God said "it is not good for man to be alone," He was also saying "it is not good for God to be alone." Now surely you will say God was not alone as He has always been Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Yes, but there was felt a strong desire to extend this wonderful fellowship in the Godhead or God would not have begun to create. He would not have any reason to if it had not been a good thing to do. But even the man God created could not be HIS counterpart until later when men could be born again and become partaker of HIS nature.
At this point I must briefly mention the difficulty. Gene Edward's "Divine Romance" does the best job here so I would hope that you would read that. It is far better than this chapter, but basically he mentions the fact based on the premise that Eve was not in the flesh as of yet after the first week of creation. This causes the difficulty of the creation of God having been finished already. Gene has a case scenario of what must have been the touching conversation between the two (both being bachelors) as Adam and his Lord walked by cool of the day in the garden. It was here perhaps God asked the question: "Adam is everything that I have made good?" Since God's creation was finished as declares His word, to get Adam a mate after creation is already through would pose a problem.
There are three Hebrew words used for "create" in these first two chapters of the Bible, which are very interesting here. The first is found once and once only. We do not really know how many years or millenniums ago Genesis 1:1 really took place. We can only speculate it. However you look at it you can't change this Hebrew word or its meaning. " In the beginning God created: It means to create something out of nothing. There was no other thing to form the material things with. The rest of the words found in the record translated "make" or "create" mean to make something out of something, for example, Adam was made of the dust of the ground and so were the animals. But there is one more word and again it is used once and once only and I believe it was AFTER the 6-day creation that it happened because she was actually and really created out of the dust of the ground the very moment Adam was created. Anyway, that word means to build. Eve was built! She and she alone of all the creatures in God's creation was built! Yes, and I do believe she is the crown of all of God's creation and the most beautiful creation that He ever made except for the new creation.
And just how difficult was this transaction between Adam and God? Well, I do not believe God is a thief, so I would have to think that He fellowshipped with Adam concerning what He was about to do. The question is, was there blood? Or did God somehow operate without the shedding of blood and remove a rib from Adam's side? All we know is that this was easier for Adam than it was for the Lord because the REAL Adam, the Last Adam, Christ suffered the worst death of all in fulfillment of this picture of which Adam was the type. Adam was the figure of Christ. So Adam's deep sleep signified Christ's death. The rib from out of His side signified the blood and water from the side of Christ. What does this blood and water signify to US! Let's get this straight, OK? It is everything! It is the whole New Testament! The NT consists of 2 ministries. Later on these 2 ministries became one in Christ. Don't let anyone tell you today that that Christian magazine that we see on the News stands today called "Ministries" has a valid title. If you study the NT you will find there is only one ministry (see Acts 1) and it is God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ through the Holy Spirit dispensing Himself into man. There is one flowing river and it flows from one throne. The fact that there were two elements there at the cross, I will explain. At first there were two ministries to bring in the New Testament. There was John the Baptist, who could not properly be called Old testament or New Testament as he was a transition phase or a bridge from the one to the other. And his job is? To terminate you!!! He came to baptize and that means to bury the dead! And that's all we're good for! We need a new life because the old is hopeless and that's the real meaning of the words of Jesus: you must be born again. This must is an absolute must. So what was Christ's ministry as explained by this same man, whom Jesus described to be the greatest of all prophets? John the Baptist said in Matthew 3:11,12, "I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. 12 "His winnowing fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly clean out His threshing floor, and gather His wheat into the barn; but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire." Christ's job? To germinate you!!! This He accomplishes by the new birth.
Here we see the New Testament has two aspects: 1. To terminate our old creation. This Christ did on the cross when He crucified the whole world with Himself and terminated it and then it was buried with Him along with you and I and everything else. This can be found in Galatians 6:14 which say that the world has been crucified to the believer and vice versa. 2. To germinate the new creation. To baptize with water is to bury that which came from the first Adam and put it away. To baptize with the Holy Spirit is to give you a brand new life and baptize you into the Body of Christ, who is the 2nd man of the new creation. These two necessary baptisms are mentioned again in John 3, the famous chapter on the new birth: 5 Jesus answered, "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. 6"That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit." The water here is for burial of the old which is what John did but the Spirit is renewing the new into new life. This is the real meaning of the blood and water taken out of Jesus side. Except that the meaning of the water changed in that context to be the positive side of the river of the water of life. So you see that blood AND WATER IS THE VERY ESSENCE OF THE New Testament (which blessing, the New Covenant blessing, both Galatians and Hebrews describes as being the Holy Spirit in us), which is the Triune God dispensed into us. God was the Word. The Word became flesh. The Word become flesh was the rent veil on the cross both opening the way to God and releasing the Spirit to dispense all of this life to man and in so doing became the LAMB. The Lamb became the LIFE GIVING SPIRIT in His resurrection! The essence of this Spirit is the blood and water that issued forth from the side of the rent VEIL Himself! The negative aspect of death, which is an element of the Spirit, to kill the old, washes, purifies and actually terminates the old creation germs within us! The positive aspect of the Spirit, which is the living water refreshes, quenches our thirst, strengthens, revitalizes the new life and brings all the elements of the divine life and nature with Him to sanctify, transform us conform us to the image of the first born and eventually take this DNA of Christ all the way to glorifying us with a new body! This is the whole New Testament! Can you see that these two ministries have become just one in the Lord Jesus Christ? This is why John the Baptist said "He must increase but I must decrease" and later had go off the scene.
So you see it was not easy for Christ, the very DNA of God, in fact very GOD Himself to obtain a bride built up with His very life and nature. To obtain her He would have to love her very much because He would have to go to the cross. So, we see that Adam was a type or shadow of this reality.
When the woman (which means out of man) was brought to the man Adam said "this is now bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh"! Paul in Eph. 5 repeats these words again and in doing so refers to Christ and His Bride. So it must be that we are humanity of His new humanity and deity of His deity. This does not make us God in the Godhead as the infinite One Who alone should be worshiped and Who wields the ultimate control of the divine power. But this makes us partakers of He Himself in that we are now part of His very life and members of His Body. Though we are part of God Himself, it must be re-iterated that there is only One God and only to Him belongs all glory honor and praise for He alone is worthy and we are only worthy because we are given the privilege to be in Him! When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory. Colossians 3:4.In Ephesians 5 you can also see these two (termination and germination) aspects of Christ's one ministry or anointing (or you can even call it painting or even a masterpiece). Ephesians 5:25 & 26 says: Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, (the blood) that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word. (the germinating Spirit). With this Christ builds His bride with the result of all this worked within us: gold, pearls and precious stones!
|The Revelation of the Lost Keys|