Chapter 11: As in the Days of Noah

“Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great  in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.  And the Lord was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart” (Gen. 6:5-6).  God feels a flood of emotions.  And learns.  Oh-oh!  Look out!

The earth was “corrupt before God” and “filled with violence” (v. 11).

Scary, sounds so much like today!

But back then, one big problem was “sons of God” (Gen. 6:2) taking wives for themselves, resulting in giants on the earth.  This was not fallen angels interbreeding with women to produce half-demon giants!  Humans—not angels which can’t reproduce (Luke 20:35-36)—were the problem here.  “The reference has to do with the breakdown of the separation of the godly line of Seth by intermarriage with the godless line of Cain” (The Scofield Study Bible III, p. 13).

Our loving God felt compelled to wipe out all the evil with a worldwide flood as the best merciful solution.  In His comprehensive plan, the drowned would have their opportunity for  salvation in His Great White Throne Judgment (Rev. 20:11-12).  In due time He would teach mankind His Holy Day called the Eighth Day (Lev. 23:36).

“But Noah found grace

[in the Old Testament!] in the eyes of the Lord…. Noah was a just man, perfect in his generations.  Noah walked with God” (Gen. 6:9)—like Enoch had.

“By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with  fear” (Heb. 11:7, King James Version).  Surprise, we don’t expect to find fear in the Hall of Faith chapter!  The Greek word here for fear [eulabeomai] appears only one other time—in Acts 23:10 where the commander was fearing Paul might be ripped to pieces by the mob.  Barnes Commentary says “It  might mean Noah was influenced by the dread of what was coming.”  Happily, he was more influenced by obeying God!

We all find ourselves living somewhere between fear and faith, hopefully closer to the faith side.  The same  Paul who wrote 2 Tim. 1:7 also wrote 1 Cor. 2:3.

Noah built by faith, not by sight (2 Cor. 5:7).  He kept swinging the hammer under cloudless skies.

If Noah had normal human resistance to undertaking such a massive project, perhaps God did win him over with Bill Cosby’s classic “how long can you tread water!”

It’s encouraging that God allowed Noah’s wife [surely not named Joan of], three sons Shem, Ham and Japheth, and their three wives to survive with him.  It gives hope that when it’s time to flee to the Place of Safety (Rev. 12:14), God might allow unconverted family to flee also if they are willing to step out in faith.

Noah and his family built the three-deck ark according to God’s specs—surely the Master Ark-itect!

“On the basis of a cubit as 18 inches,  the ark was 450 ft. long with a beam of 75 ft. and a depth of 45 ft.  Similar to the proportions of a modern ocean liner”—Scofield, p. 14).

To gather all the wood, it took a lot of go-foring!  And more pitching than Jason Verlander!  Building the ark took 120 years, with Noah bravely serving his neighbors as their “preacher of righteousness” (2 Peter 2:5) though they undoubtedly jeered and mocked him as a religious nut building in the middle of a desert!  Surely this 600-year-old neighbor must be having a mid-life crisis! (Gen. 7:11).  Gone off the deep end!

Interesting, it was while Noah was occupied with building the ark that Jesus “went and preached to the spirits in prison”–Satan and the demons in tartaroo (a Greek word meaning “place of restraint” which is usually translated “hell”) (1 Peter 3:19-20).   They were restrained on earth, and perhaps Jesus warned them they wouldn’t have much to do during the Flood except call a plumber!  Actually He probably informed them that they would have additional restraint from influencing man to become evil so fast.

All aboard!

Moses didn’t have to be adept at roping and riding because God caused the animals, birds and insects to come to him—two by two, male and female (Gen. 6:20), reminiscent of the Adam parade (2:19).

It’s crucial to note that Noah understood about clean and unclean meats because God instructed him to load seven pairs of clean vs. one pair of unclean (7:2).  This would be necessary to eat, sacrifice and repopulate.

Note that this was long before Mt. Sinai, but long after Abel knew he needed to sacrifice a clean animal, which Leviticus would later show would be partly eaten.  It’s likely that Adam who named the animals was taught which foods “God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth” (1 Tim. 4:3, Lev. 11, Deut. 14).

Skeptics question that there was

Room for all the animals

Noah only had to take pairs from each Genesis kind of animal (Gen. 1:25) rather than scientific species.   A biblical kind is more like a scientific genus where two horses can be selectively bred and end up with 400 different varieties ranging from Shetland Pony to Clydesdale.   Similarly, all humans to come down from Adam were funneled from the eight passengers.

Since the biggest percentage of land animals are insects, and it’s been calculated that the average-sized land animal would need only a cubic foot and a half of space, many studies have concluded that the ark was big enough to serve as a floating zoo.  In June I plan to visit the exciting life-size Ark Encounter theme park in Kentucky!

When it was time, God invited Noah and his household aboard (7:1).  He responded like we must when God the Father calls us (John 6:44).   The Bible beckons “Come!” all the way till Rev. 22:17.

Then, in a thoughtful gesture to spare Noah feeling guilty, God shut the door. Noah had relatives who must have drowned including probably other sons and daughters born before he was age 500 (Gen. 5:32).  It is thought that 969-year-old Methusaleh, the longest living human who out-clocked Noah by only 19 years, died at the Flood and maybe clawing at the door!  Adam and Methusaleh tag-teamed all the way to the Flood!

“All the fountains of the great deep were broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened” (7:11).  It rained 40 days and nights!   With all the critters aboard, Noah probably felt like it was raining cats and dogs!

If you believe the Bible [which we must and do!] the Flood covered even all the mountains of the earth by 15 cubits.   Believe it, a worldwide flood!  Peter knew that “The world that then existed perished” (2 Peter 3:6).   The Bible indicates that the waters of the earth at that time were gathered in one place with one land mass (Gen. 1:9).

The Flood—God’s, not actually Noah’s, since how much water can a human come up with except water under the bridge—is dated 2,325 B.C.—1,656 years after re-creation.

From embarking to walking off, the flood lasted one year and 10 days (7:11, 8:14).  Noah marked off time in seven-day periods undoubtedly according to God’s weeks ending in Sabbaths to observe.

After the Flood

“The ark rested … upon the mountains of Ararat” (8:4).  With Ararat being  an ancient name for Armenia, covering much of far eastern Turkey and western Iran, who knows if God will allow eager artifact hunters to find it.  It’s exciting for me to know a brother in Christ who is an expert on the subject and believes he will find the ark in Iran!

God delegated the administration of the death penalty to man (9:6).   And at this time He permitted meat to be eaten (9:3).  This doesn’t mean they had been vegetarians because we’ve already seen that clean meats were surely eaten before the Flood so it looks like they hadn’t been allowed to eat the cargo while on the ark.

After the Flood the canopy of “water above the firmament” (Gen. 1:7), which it’s thought provided greater air pressure and a shield from the sun’s harmful rays, was gone.   This may have allowed the first rainbow to be seen, establishing God’s Covenant that promises He will never again wipe out the earth with a Flood.  The average lifespan plummeted from 857.5 years to 120 years (Gen. 6:3).

During  the first 2,000 years of human history, eight generations had direct access to righteous Noah.

In our day

Jesus, the Living Word, showing He believed the Flood occurred just as he inspired the Written Word to attest, prophesied that “as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be” (Matt. 24:37-39).

Life goes on looking pretty normal, people eating, drinking and marrying.    As with Noah’s day, they don’t know until they’re taken all away.

How long can we tread ignorance?

Watch next Friday for
Chapter 12
“Babel and Tower Then, Babylon and Towers Now”
What’s It All About?

Chapter 1: What’s It All About?

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“Now My Eye Sees You”

All Job could see was day upon day of his suffering from head-to-toe boils and “miserable comforters” (Job 16:2) so he wanted to talk to God (Part 1 link below).  But he slipped into contending with God and even accusing God, and challenged Him to answer (Part 2).  Careful, we might get what we ask for!

The Word blew in like a whirlwind on His portable throne (Ezk. 1:4) and commanded Job’s attention! (Job 38:1).  He shows up to help Job think straight before restoring him to health and service.

“Who is this who darkens counsel without  knowledge?   Now prepare yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer me.”  Who is this spouting in ignorance, presumption and arrogance!  Resulting in darkness when we’re supposed to be a light to others!

The Word zings out pointed questions to help Job realize He didn’t have the wisdom—or the right—to question His awesome great Creator.

“Now God speaks  to Job, but not to give Job the justification he had been demanding…. he reminds Job that the wisdom that directs the Creator’s ways is beyond the reach of human understanding” (Zondervan NIV Study Bible).   None of us is even close to being in God’s league!

God was not there to browbeat Job.  For three chapters (38-41) He gently chides Job like a loving parent comforting a hurting, confused child.  The unrivaled Creator explains His great care and concern for all of His creation.   As Paul would later explain, we must find contentment in whatever circumstances we find ourselves  (Php.  4:10-12).

“Shall the one who contends with the Almighty correct Him?   He who rebukes God, let him answer it” (Job 40:2).  Are you going to tell me what to do or complain about what I’ve done?

What say you

the one who would “fill my mouth with arguments” (Job 23:4)?  Hah!

Here’s all Job could muster:  “Behold,  I am vile; What shall I answer You?  I lay my hand over my mouth” (Job 40:4).

Because Job was  humbling himself, the Word could give him some further correction:  “Now prepare yourself like a man; I will question  you, and you shall answer me:  Would you indeed annul my judgment?  Would you condemn me that you may be justified?” (Job 40:7-8).

The Word challenges Job to be God for a day if he thinks he can do a better job.  Why would I need your advice in running the universe?  Should I change my plans at the whim of every peevish complainer?

God doesn’t attack Job as being self-righteous, but “all our righteousnesses are like filthy rags” (Isa. 64:6) and are not self-perpetuating (Rom. 10:2-3).

Repentance and Restoration

Job responds with what God has taught him and what he has learned:

“I know that you can do everything, and that no purpose of yours can be withheld from you.  You asked, ‘Who is this who hides counsel without knowledge?’  Therefore I have uttered what I did not understand, things too wonderful for me, which I did not know….

“I have heard of you by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees You.
Therefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes” (Job 42:2-6).

What he understood of God was based on what he had been taught by others.  Now he is able to really see God for himself.  Job abhors what he has foolishly uttered in ignorance and repents in total humility.  His relationship with God took on a deeper, more humble bond.

He sounds like David after his egregious sins with Bathsheba and Uriah:
“For I acknowledge my transgressions, and my sin is always before me.  Against you, you only, have I sinned, and done this evil in your sight—that you may be found just when you speak, and blameless when you judge” (Psa. 51:4).

The purpose for all our trials may not be known in this life.   God knows exactly what He is doing in all circumstances even when we don’t.

God dealt with Job in this special way to teach him something he needed in order to be in the Family & Kingdom.  And thank God

We will see too!

We can pray.  We can listen to God.  We walk by faith—relaxed trust in God in any trial that comes our way.

It would be great to talk with God face to face and that’s going to happen for us and Job:  “Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed we shall be like Him,  for we shall see Him as He is” (1 John 3:2).

Part 1:

Watch Friday for
Chapter 11
 “As in the Days of Noah”
What’s It All About?

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Not a Good Idea to Contend with God!

“Now My Eye Sees You”In part 1 (link below) Job wanted to talk with God, as we should even up to three times a day in prayer (Psa. 55:17, Dan. 6:10) and actually without ceasing (1 Thes. 5:17).

But the festering boils and the annoying friends wore him down for “months of futility and wearisome nights” (Job 7:3).

“Therefore I will not restrain my mouth; I will speak in the anguish of my spirit; I will complain in the bitterness of my soul” (v. 11).

complaint deptJob is openly honest with God, baring his anguish, tears and doubts.  He is complaining to the right person!   God is so patient, gentle and kind with Job—as with us!

“What are people, that you should make so much of us, that you should think of us so often?  For you examine us every morning and test us every moment.  Why won’t you leave me alone, at least long enough for me to swallow!   If I have sinned, what have I done to you, O watcher of all humanity?  Why make me your target?  Am I a burden to you?  Why not just forgive my sin and take away my guilt?” (7:17-20, New Living Translation).  Maybe Job was musing:  If trials are such a blessing, God must really love me!

So Job starts thinking about wanting to

“Contend with Him”

Bring legal case.  “Answer Him” in court under cross-examination (9:3-4).  Funny that Job realized a being of clay “could not answer him one time out of a thousand… Who has hardened himself against Him and prospered?”

This is the God of the Universe who has seen it all!  This is not Judge Judy!  And I wouldn’t take her on either!

Growing more contentious, Job says, “But I would speak to the Almighty, and I desire to  reason with God” (13:3).   Great, God invites “Come let us reason together” (Isa. 1:18).  He’s interested in our opinions!

As his suffering continues and mounts, Job comes perilously close to accusing God!   People suffering often blurt out words they don’t mean.  God of perfect compassion understands.

Job rests his case

“I would present my case before Him and fill my mouth with arguments” (Job 23:4).

Till I die I will not put away my integrity from me.  My righteousness I hold fast … my heart shall not reproach me as long as I live” (27:5-6).

“Look, I will sign my name to my defense.  Let the Almighty answer  me” (31:35, NLT).

Be careful, you may get what you ask for.

Part 2:
Part 1:

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Chapter 10: Cut Off—Except for a Select Few

Now, lest Adam and Eve, corrupted by sin and their human nature tilted evil, “take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever” (Gen 3:22), God drove them out of the garden and into the world where Satan would be the interim landlord (2 Cor. 4:4) and deceive all the tenants (Rev. 12:9).    God posted cherubim with a flaming sword.  Closed till further notice (Rev. 22:2, 14)!

This eviction changed the course of humanity, though all according to God’s great plan of salvation.

Mankind, as  a whole, was now cut off

from access to the Holy Spirit for 6,000 years—until the Word would return as Messiah and set up His Kingdom of God on earth.  Adam and Eve’s progeny do not inherit original sin (Rom. 3:23) or evil human nature.  But it doesn’t take long for newborn innocent babes to succumb to the 3 S’s:  Satan, society and self.  Except for a select few, all have only the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil to live under and choose from.  Some live more good, some more evil.

The Master Timer knows when it’s best for an individual to be called—when they will best respond—so Jesus stated, “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him” (John 6:44).  How many would that be?

God hadn’t yet taught man His Holy Days, but Pentecost teaches that there will be only a smaller harvest of firstfruits by Christ’s return (Lev. 23:17).  How small?  Rev. 14:1-4 says 144,000 firstfruits, and the latest estimate  is that 140 billion humans have lived on the earth.  That would be 1%!

From Adam to the Flood, few righteous

What Eve said of her first child Cain may be much more profound than first appearance (Gen. 4:1).  Looking for the Savior who would bruise Satan’s head (Gen. 3:15), she may have thought she just gave birth!  God’s Word translation puts it:  “I have gotten the man that the LORD promised.”  It looks like Eve meant “I have gotten a man … the Lord!”

Cain means “possession, gotten, acquired” and his line would live “the way of Cain” (Jude 11)—the get way versus God’s way of give.

The Word did not accept Cain’s offering, though grain offerings are okay with God (Lev. 6:15-17).  Maybe his grain was day-old or throw-away.  For sure it was his attitude.  The Word discerned that Cain was on the verge of serious sin, and even after talking to him personally about how he needed to “do well” and “rule over” sin knocking at the door, Cain flung it open and became the first murderer and fratricide.

“Am I my brother’s keeper?”  Yes, Cain, you must keep from killing him!  And you must not even make him stumble (1 Cor. 8:13).

God called Abel

Leave it to God to call the second born with a name meaning, of all things, “vanity.”  God doesn’t call who you’d expect (1 Cor. 1:26-27).

Abel brought “the best of his firstborn lambs from his flock” (Gen. 4:4, New Living Translation).   You have to wonder if this special sacrifice for Cain and Abel might have been on the night that would later become Passover picturing Jesus Christ’s sacrifice for man.  It’s amazing how many of these “hints” you see once you know about God’s Holy Days.  Abel is the first person listed in the Hall of Faith (Heb. 11:4).

Genesis also lists the line of Seth, the third son.   The names mean:  Adam (“man); Seth (“appointed”); Enosh (“mortal”); Cainan (“sorrow”); Mahalalel (“blessed God”); Jared (“descend”); Enoch (“teach”); Methuselah (“his death shall bring”); Lamech (“despairing”); and Noah (“comfort”).  Strung together in order, their names prophesy:  Man [is] appointed mortal sorrow, [but] the blessed God shall come down teaching [and] His death shall bring [those] despairing comfort.

It was after Enosh that “men began to call on the name of the Lord” (Gen. 4:26).    How like today when one-third of the world claims to be Christian and yet Jesus says “But why do you call Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do  the things which I say?” (Luke 6:46).

The only other person rated righteous until Noah is Enoch.  He “walked with God” (Gen. 5:24), just as today, “He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked” (1 John 2:6).  And Enoch “pleased God” (Heb. 11:5).

What happened to Enoch?

When the Bible says Enoch was “translated” (KJV), it’s not talking about into French (pardon me for pointing that out!).    Another translation for “taken away” is “transferred elsewhere.”   The Bible does not specify where he was taken.   It does emphatically state where he was NOT taken.  We are taken in by Satan’s immortal soul lie if we don’t believe what Jesus Himself said about whether humans have gone up to heaven (John 3:13).   Please read this crucial scripture for yourself and believe what the most credible source possible said!

“So that he would not see death” (New American Standard Bible) is a better translation because Heb. 11:5 says Enoch “died in faith, not having received the promises” (v. 13).   At only 365 years!

The Bible doesn’t say plainly why or how Enoch may have been transported somewhere on the earth to escape from a deathly situation.  Perhaps to avoid martyrdom for prophesying about the Second Coming of the Lord “with ten thousands of His saints” to execute judgment on the ungodly (Jude 14-15).  Enoch liked that last word!

Timelines make fascinating study.  At the juncture of 1,000 years of completed human history, eight generations could’ve had direct contact with Adam and Eve.

Yet only Abel and Enoch are singled out as righteous.  That’s certainly a few.   Two few.

God is more particular than the Marines!  He wants the few, but not the proud!

Are we responding to our calling?

Chapter 11:  As in the Days of Noah
Chapter 1:
  What’s It All About?

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Would You Like to Talk to God Face to Face?

No, just in prayer will be good enough!

God knows all the bad about me!  I don’t know if I could take what He might say.  Like saying hi to a boss in the hall, but what if he called me into his office!  Would he dump on me or even fire me!

Did anybody else besides me

think this way as a quick first reaction?

Well, yeah, God knows all the bad about me but I’m forgiven.  I’m His son and I want to please Him.   I want to do His will.  I already ask Him daily to correct me in His mercy and He does.

So yeah, I would like to talk to Him face to face 

But I don’t expect that to happen until the resurrection (1 John 3:1-2).

For now, we can learn from Job’s experience in relating and talking to God.

We should take into account that Job—and his three friends—did not know what God said about him to Satan:  “Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil?  And he still holds fast to his integrity” (Job 2:3).

Like me and I’m guessing you too, Job had never received

A direct evaluation from God

He had only heard of God and been taught of God (Job 42:5).   He sacrificed after each of his kids’ parties just in case they had somehow sinned (Job 1:5).  It would have been natural for him to judge his spiritual status with God by his physical blessings.

Job seems to be contemporary of the patriarchs of the pre-Mosaic age because there’s no mention of the law, tabernacle or temple.  Job offered burnt offerings rather than priests.   It looks like he was King Jobab, son of Chief Zerah (Gen. 36:17) of the Edomite city of Bozrah, making Job a great grandson of Esau!   Job probably lived sometime while Israel was in slavery in Egypt (1682-1443 BC).   God called Job “the finest man alive on the earth” (New Living Translation)—apparently tucked in between Abraham and Moses.

Total surprise:  Such a righteous man is Edomite not Israelite!

The book of Job, considered a literary classic, is ideal for self-examination, which is good all year long but Paul said necessary before Passover (March 29 this year) (1 Cor. 11:28).

“The ethical content  of Job’s confession, with its emphasis on inward motivation … and  attitude … is unique and unparalleled until Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount—Nelson Study Bible.

God allowed Satan to inflict painful boils from Job’s head to foot!  As John Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible describes it, Satan spared only his mouth, lips and teeth—instruments of speech—so that Job would curse God! (Job 19:20).   Thanks to that, we get to hear Job’s thoughts and words!

In Job 6:24, he wisely states, “Teach me … Cause me to understand wherein I have erred.”

Job boilsBut as Job’s boils festered on for “months of futility and wearisome nights (Job 7:3), and his friends compounded their accusations and condescending discouragement, Job wanted to talk to God.

People commonly say Job’s problem was self-righteousness (Job 32:1), but the Bible sums up in James 5:11

The two biggest lessons for us to learn from Job

about relating to God and talking to God:   “You have heard of the perseverance of Job and seen the end intended by the Lord—that the Lord is very compassionate and merciful.”

Jesus said He appreciates that we believe even though we haven’t seen (John 20:29).  For now, prayer is good enough!

We must persevere in prayer (Luke 18:1-8) and be grateful for His compassion and mercy.  He talks back to us through Bible study, wise counsel and experiences.  He is decidedly not an unjust judge.

We must not decide to contend with God, as we’ll see Job foolishly did.

Watch for part 2 of this 3-part series on Job
“Not a Good Idea to Contend with God”

Watch this Friday for
Chapter 10
“Cut Off—Except for a Select Few”
What’s It All About? this Friday

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Chapter 9: Not Ignorant of His Devices

Put yourself in Adam and Eve’s shoes … er … bare feet.  You’ve just enjoyed the Sabbath in paradise directly with your Creator.

And then the next day, the first day of the new week, probably a sunny day, probably at sunrise, Satan shows up.  You don’t hear a shriek out of the woman because “the serpent” was not yet cursed into a writhing reptile that would be “enmity with the woman” (Gen. 3:14-15).   Satan may have appeared “perfect in beauty” (Ezek. 28:12), shiny like a reptile without needing Cindy Crawford’s skin products.  And dismiss the idea of hissing—he undoubtedly spoke eloquently straight to their yet untapped feelings.

The Bible makes it clear that Satan—the ruler of the earth (2 Cor. 4:4)—was only there with God’s permission (Job 1:12, 2:6).  All God Beings to come will have to face him and overcome him just as the Word would 4,000 years later to replace him (Matt. 4:1).

The Bible doesn’t say how much—if any—the Word had prepared Adam and Eve for their confrontation with the Adversary.  The key word is con.  They were “ignorant of his devices” (2 Cor. 2:11) like we too often are.

Adam and Eve were created “for a little while lower than the angels” (Heb. 2:7, The New American Standard).  They didn’t stand a chance against the wiles of the Great Deceiver, and the Word knew that because He was “the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world” (Rev. 13:8).

Satan said to Eve

Has God said “You shall not eat of every tree of the garden?”  Look out, Satan’s opening jab is his outrageous twist:  God wants you to starve!

Satan knew God had planted a whole garden full of lovely trees good for food.  Two trees were right in the middle because they really mattered and would influence everything Adam and Eve thought and did (Gen. 2:9).

Satan blew the one restriction all out of proportion.  Why should you be limited!  God’s unfair!  He is personally wronging you!

Eve rightly understood God’s basic instructions and answered that they could eat from any of the trees except from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil—“lest you die” (Gen. 3:3).

“You shall not surely die”

Satan lived up to his status as the father of lies from the beginning (John 8:44)—here as also when he subverted the angels.

The truth was the Tree of Life represented the Holy Spirit, and they would have lived forever as long as they regularly ate from it and obediently avoided eating from the forbidden one.  Actually they weren’t to even touch it (Gen. 3:3) because God wants us to stay far back from sin and not cozy up to any line.

But the Liar said they would live forever anyway because they were immortal souls.  The one who tried to swoop up to heaven would convince mankind that they would go to heaven when they died, if they were good, but if bad, they would get his punishment of ever-burning hell.

“You will be like God”

Satan knew that was their purpose!  And he was all-out committed to stopping them from fulfilling it.   He goes for the knockout!  So he lied that they could become God now, deciding for themselves what is good and evil, if they would only eat from the forbidden tree.  They could determine their own standards.   “God is holding out on you!”

Satan pulled out all the stops in appealing to their vanity, lust and pride (1 John 2:16)—which up until then he cornered the market on.  You owe it to yourself.  Don’t you deserve it.  Why should you miss out.  Judge for yourself.  If it looks good and feels good … But wait!  Act now!  And we’ll double the offer!  Both of you can have some and share the pleasures of God!  Bon appétit!

Instead of recognizing more French to pardon, when Eve’s eyes fooled her, she went for a bite.  She liked the taste of whatever fruit it was.  It doesn’t say apple, but there was no doctor present, so who knows.  Then she gave to Adam—and it’s instructive that he was right there “with her” (Gen. 3:6).   The one who was to lead was not deceived like Eve, but he had stayed weak and silent (1 Tim. 2:14).

The divine interrogation

The Word came walking in the garden in the cool of the day.  It’s worth pointing out that the God Being who interacted with humans in the Bible was the one who became Jesus Christ.  Never God who became the Father.  Jesus said, “You have neither heard His voice at any time, nor seen His form” (John 5:37).   Jesus came to reveal the Father (John 17:25-26) because He looked like Him and He said and did what the Father told Him.

Adam and Eve foolishly tried to hide from their omniscient Creator, camouflaged in their new fig leaves.  Since then man generally hides from God.

The Word confronted Adam first because he was responsible to lead his helper.  Regrettably, he sounded like he thought he was living in Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville:  “Some people claim there’s a woman to blame.”

Next, Eve did what Flip Wilson’s Geraldine Jones character would later alabi:  “The Devil made me do it!”

God took no lip from the Devil.   It’s the first prophecy in the Bible (Gen. 3:15):  Jesus Christ would bruise Satan’s head (Rom. 16:20) by replacing him as earth’s ruler, and Satan would bruise Jesus’ heel through the crucifixion.

How quickly paradise was messed up!  Through Adam and Eve eating forbidden fruit instead of bearing fruits of the Spirit from eating of the Tree of Life, sin entered the world (Rom. 5:12).  They committed sin worthy of eternal death.  Neutral human nature became evil.  This ruins everything.

We should be able to identify with this real-life story that actually happened to our first parents.

Each day we face the same two trees

When tempted, I sucker for “Why can’t I do what I want!  Nobody tells me what to do.”

Today, what fruit have you chosen to eat (Deut. 30:19)?

Watch next Friday for
Chapter 10
Cut Off—Except a Select Few
What’s It All About?

Chapter 1:’s-it-all-about/

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Chapter 8: The Sabbath Was Made for Man

Chapter 9: Not Ignorant of His DevicesThe Word created Adam and Eve just for each other and married them.  Then He made a special day for their delight and pleasure—the seventh day of the week lasting from sunset to sunset (Mark 2:27).  He made it by resting from all He had created, and He sanctified  it—setting it apart as holy time (Gen. 2:3).

The Word knew that humans would need a day of rest physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually each week to cope with all the craziness of life!

This was the origin of the weekly Sabbath, though the word “Sabbath” appears only indirectly.  The Hebrew word shabath means “to rest.”  The Master Timer made it just in time for the new couple to have 24 hours before having to start dressing and keeping the garden.

And speaking of no dressing, the evening was their wedding night, and the Word no doubt was happy to give them welcome space!

But first Adam and Eve probably started the Sabbath with a special meal, shared with their Creator.  The human family pictures the God Family, and the Sabbath is all about family.  Then the Living Word may have shared “a Bible study” on how to have a happy marriage.  Perhaps He touched on some insight into childrearing they would need in about nine months.

During the seventh day, the Word would be meeting up with Adam and Eve for worship and religious instruction.   Religious instruction would be their most important education.

Of all that could be preached

What did the Word teach them that first special Sabbath time together?

No doubt about the two special trees—the Tree of Life and the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.   These two trees summed up God’s way of living (give and love) versus Satan’s way (get and hate).

What a glorious seven days!  God first loved us!  He gave us everything!  How could man possibly get off to a better start!

We’re going to hate to find out what happens.

Chapter 9:
Chapter 1:’s-it-all-about/

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