The Majesty of God
Chapter Eight – Paradise Lost
As day followed day, Red proceeded to explore Lifegiver's mind, which was delightfully agile, and he found her to be very sensitive to the spiritual realm. She learned some things privately from God that she passed on to her husband, just as he was able to teach her things that he was better at understanding than she was. They appreciated each other for their particular gifts, delighting in what they learned from each other. They flowed together in harmony, ruling the lesser creatures and keeping the Garden in good order.
Satan's bitterness deepened when he saw how the Son of God related to the human creatures. It was not only as a Father to a son and a daughter, but also as to very special friends. As the highest–ranking praise leader, he had been granted great privileges in Heaven before his rebellion. He had known God as his Father and as a friend, besides being an honoured servant, but these new creatures were given a place even closer to the Father than any of the angels, regardless of how they were not as strong or as brilliant of mind as the least of God's angels in Heaven.
Humans could not even fly on their own. Their uniqueness seemed to be in how they were "wired" inside. These creatures needed to trust God to an extent that was required of none of the angels, in order to overcome their limitations. They had an ability to know God's mind and heart like no other, and to be an open channel for God's power like no other creatures, which would enable them to overcome all physical and intellectual limitations.
Indeed, if they opened themselves completely to God, trusting always in His goodness, no matter how puzzled they were about circumstances that appeared to contradict it, they would eventually be enabled to far exceed what any of the angels could do. Lucifer squinted thoughtfully at the creatures, mulling over the possibility that this need to trust God so implicitly could be used against them.
He thought of how he could entice the humans who were placed over these domains. If he could somehow trick them both into handing over their authority, he could eat from the Tree of Life and possibly obtain an edge in his battle with God.
Satan did not reckon with the fact that he can never obtain anything, unless God lets him, nor the possibility that taking that fruit would be destructive to him, because he was no longer wired to make use of it.
The adversary could see no way, yet, to get to the creatures. The man and woman were either always with the Creator, talking to Him, or listening to Him, or they always had God somewhere in their thoughts in a reverential manner, even when they didn't physically see Him. The man, in particular, at face value accepted everything that God said and obeyed Him without question. The woman seemed to need explanations more than what her husband did; she had a keener sense of curiosity.
Hmm. Maybe the woman was the man's weak spot. Perhaps he could get to the man through her. Not yet, though. The man's mind was still too riveted on the Lord God, but every day that he came closer to the consummation of his marriage to the woman, he was becoming more and more distracted by anticipation.
Lucifer hung about awaiting opportunity to strike. Years went by. Red and Lifegiver spent them pleasantly, hanging out with their Creator, learning many things from Him and just having fun with Him. They also had time alone with each other, exploring each other's personality and exchanging viewpoints, figuring out better ways to do their job, and dreaming about when they would have children.
God set a pattern in the Garden of Eden for couples to approach each other with great respect and appreciation before consummating their marriage, to develop emotional intimacy before engaging in sexual intimacy. It can be safely surmised that Adam and Eve did not consummate their marriage in the Garden of Eden. Cain was not conceived until after his parents' eviction from the Garden.
Adam was 130 when Seth was conceived. That means that Adam and Eve may have spent twenty or thirty years in the Garden before they were driven out of it. Cain and Abel would then have been born and had time to grow to an age when it was considered proper to marry (possibly between 70 and 100 years) and mature enough to be put to a test that would determine which of them would be Adam's heir.
If Eve's body had been fully mature for marriage when she was made, and Adam and Eve had consummated their marriage before their expulsion from Eden, Eve would have immediately become pregnant because there was no death before the Fall. The eggs from her ovaries would not have been wasted and needing to be expelled from her body through menstruation.
Their courtship might have lasted 20 or more years before Eve's ovum were mature, but that does not necessarily mean that Eve did not look like a grown woman, or at least in her late teens, the day that she was created. The human body has changed in the way it functions since Creation. Nowadays, there doesn't seem to be any apparent reason for having an appendix, though normally we are all born with one.
Judging by the ages of the antediluvian patriarchs, who lived for nearly one thousand years, it is likely that puberty, or at least some aspects of puberty, came much later in life than it does now. It is part of the curse that women begin their menses prematurely, before they are emotionally and intellectually capable of raising children in a thoroughly mature manner, and that they begin menopause and start to be physically infirm when they are finally sensitive and experienced with life enough to raise children gently and kindly, but firmly in a self–disciplined way, if they have been developing character in the preceding years.
Even today, medical professionals have noted an alarming trend in which girls are maturing physically at younger and younger ages, probably due to chemical contamination of our food supply and, in some cases, from eating foods that are no longer as beneficial as they were when God first created them, now producing precocious sexual development in children who ingest those products frequently for extended periods of time.
In our present world, most women ordinarily have children in their late teens and in their twenties. In the beginning of Time, it would have been shocking to sensible people to let anyone so young, even women in their thirties or forties, to have children. Nowadays, it would be comparable to hiring a little child to be their children's nanny. Parents need a lot of God's grace to help them take good care of their children and to fix the mistakes that they have made.
The temptation of Eve was a contest between two very strong personalities, a contest that satan did not trust to any of his fallen followers to undertake for him. He enlisted the help of a serpent, persuading it to help him beguile Eve.
The fact that God judged both Eve and the serpent by putting enmity between them indicates that he had been a special pet to her. Lucifer used Eve's particular interest in the serpent to hook her attention.
The serpent adored his masters, but found it confusing that they laughed at him sometimes. They were entertained by his curiosity and attempts to emulate them. Until satan interfered, loving and admiring Adam and Eve with intense devotion helped it to easily overlook their finding amusement at its expense.
It is likely that satan accessed the serpent's memories of its masters' laughter and ran them through its mind one right after the other to cause the serpent to feel humiliated and irritated. Apparently it had a choice about whether or not it yielded to satan. God held it responsible for succumbing to the adversary's enticements and lending itself to his endeavours by rebelling against his masters.
Lucifer probably projected pictures into the serpent's mind of the man and his mate bowing to it, if only the snake would surrender the use of its mind and body to the adversary. Intrigued, the snake went for it.
Eve might have been passing by the Forbidden Tree or she might have been looking for her pet when the trap was laid. The serpent, having consented to Lucifer's control, was twisted around the tree's limbs. Lucifer enhanced the serpent's vocal abilities and eye contact with his hypnotic power to hold her attention once it was caught.
Eve should not have lingered when she perceived the serpent's sudden ability to think contrary to the edicts of Eden. The best way to overcome temptation is to avoid it wherever possible, and run away from it when it suddenly lands in one's path. That is not cowardice or any other kind of weakness; it is wisdom. It is commitment to doing the will of God.
Eve's attention was drawn into the depths of the snake's eyes as its caressing voice smoothly inserted a doubt in her mind that God had her best interests at heart. As she stood there, the heady perfume of the tree's fruit enticed her sense of smell.
Satan told Eve that God was holding out on her. Not only that, he implied that God has serious rivals among the angels, which is an absolute lie. God's power is so much beyond satan's that there is no comparison. If God chose, He could knock satan and his angels clear across the universe with the tiniest twitch of His pinkie finger. Yeshua said that it takes only one of God's fingers to cast out demons.
There is no such thing as yin and yang, equal opposing forces of good and evil in the Universe; that is just one more of satan's deceptions. The Bible tells us to overcome evil with good. God does not tell us to do impossible things. Evil might look like it is winning for a time, but it is for only a relatively short time, in the overall scheme of things.
Men have condemned women for centuries because it was a woman who tempted Adam to eat of the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, but the Bible does not put the heaviest burden of blame on Eve. It assigns to Adam the responsibility for putting the Earth under the dominion of satan. At the point that Eve sinned, satan did not yet have any authority upon the Earth. He still had to get to Adam, the other half of the rulership, in order to take the crown.
Eve should have hurried to Adam to tell him that something was out of order in the garden. They could have consulted God on what to do about that snake. Lucifer could have been evicted from the planet. The Forbidden Tree would have always been there to provide a choice about serving God, but Man would not have been so susceptible to temptation through weakness of flesh.
In spite of being tempted by Eve, Adam had the ability to refuse her temptation and to wait for God to restore her to him in due season. He refused to wait. Innocents have suffered because the nature of sin is that it harms everything within its reach, whether it deserves to suffer or not.
Lucifer suggested to Eve that God was lying when He said that she and Adam would surely die if they ate the fruit of that tree. He wanted her to think that they could be equal to God and not dependent on Him in any way. Eve got to thinking that she would like to make some decisions that were entirely her own, and do things just to see what would happen, rather than take God's word for it that it would have bad results.
She turned to look more carefully at the fruit. It looked lush and smelled so delicious – not at all bitter like the fruit of the Tree of Life. Her mouth watered as she thought about how sweet it would taste. It must have been a ruse on God's part to strike the Tree of Life as a warning to keep them away from the Forbidden Tree.
As soon as she took a bite of the fruit, she knew that she had made a big mistake. Far from becoming more like God, the glory that was on her faded completely away and she felt death enter into her body's cells, though it worked a lot slower on her body than what it is able to do to modern Man in his extensively depleted biological state.
The serpent had lied, but Eve figured it was too late to turn back. It wasn't too late. She could have immediately cried out to God to help her, and He would have been right there in an instant. It's always best to do damage control; stop immediately when a mistake is made because the longer it goes on, the bigger mess it makes.
Preachers have said that Adam was right there with Eve, listening the whole time. It has been intimated that he wanted to see what would happen if Eve took the fruit. That is highly unlikely. Adam was still without sin, so he wasn't a coward who would let his wife take a risk like that. The Bible does say that he was with her, though, so I surmise that he happened on the scene at the last moment when her teeth were already sinking into the fruit.
Once Eve took of that fruit, she knew that she was at a disadvantage with Adam. Like the fallen angels, she now wanted to control others for her personal advantage, but she knew that Adam would never bend to her will, unless he became vulnerable to her manipulation, which would not happen as long as he stayed connected to God.
Besides that, she was jealous that the glory of God rested on Adam. She wanted to bring him down to her level. Satan was feeding all of these thoughts into her brain, now that she no longer had any defense against him. The fruit was bitter in her mouth and her belly, but she masked her revulsion and smiled beguilingly as she held out the remainder of the fruit to Adam and invited him to eat. Perhaps she said, "Taste it, Adam. It's delicious. Look, I haven't died. God must have lied."
Adam was dismayed to see Eve take the fruit. It was too late to stop her. He saw the glory fade from her and he totally lost all spiritual connection with his bride. She was spiritually dead. And it happened right on the verge of when they were finally going to consummate their marriage!
Pride was Eve's downfall, but the idol of sexual pleasure was Adam's. At that moment, his own gratification was more important to him than Eve's soul and the well–being of his children and other descendents, which is often the case when a man or woman fornicates or commits adultery or takes drugs or commits other sins that hurt people whom they are obliged to consider.
Unlike Eve who was deceived into taking the fruit, Adam could see with his own eyes that it really was evil, and that eating it had dire consequences – spiritual death! Separation from Love! Loss of the Glory! Loss of authority over the Earth!
There is no way that Lucifer would have tried to make his play if Adam was there right from the start. He needed to get the woman alone so that he could use her to get to the man. And now he had him. Adam stood there, undecided about what to do. Obviously, this was a very serious matter that could not be remedied instantly or easily.
Maybe Adam could have died as a sacrifice for Eve. Why not? At this point, he was still without sin. But it would involve pain and having the blame for Eve's sin cast on him. These things were totally repugnant to him. He did not want to be shamed by another person's sin and pay the penalty for her. He did not want his flesh to be cut, his nerves shocked, and his flesh to wither and die as he had seen happen to the Tree of Life. He loved Eve, but he didn't love her as much as God loved her.
It was not until Yeshua of Nazareth grappled with these very same issues, and more besides, in the Garden of Gethsemane where He sweat great drops of blood over it, that the effects of Adam's selfish decision in the Garden of Eden began to be turned back.
Adam knew that he could still consummate his marriage, even if he no longer had the total heart–to–heart intimacy with Eve that he had enjoyed before. For the gratification of the pleasures of the body, he was willing for Eve to continue in her sin and the torment that it brought to her, and to sell all of their children into the dominion of the unholy trinity of sin, self, and satan.
But Adam knew that he could not touch Eve if he stayed pure and holy, for she would be instantly scorched by the glory of God that was upon him. There would be a penalty to pay for disobeying God, but it would come later and he would worry about it then. To be on the same level as his wife, so that he could take her to bed now that her body was fully mature, he took the forbidden fruit when she offered it to him, lured by the sensuous, hypnotic gaze of her eyes because he did not immediately turn away from her and go to God when he saw her give in to temptation.
When Adam ate that fruit, he consented to give up his authority over this planet to Lucifer. This is why, when satan offered Yeshua all the kingdoms of this world if He would bow to him, Yeshua did not argue with satan about his authority to make that offer. He just told him straight that God alone is worthy of worship and service.
The glory faded off of Adam, too, when he ate the fruit. Suddenly, they both realized that they were naked and felt embarrassed about it. They quickly made themselves aprons from the large leaves of a fig tree that was near. Then they heard God calling to them and they fretted about Him seeing them without their shining glory and wearing the leaves, so they ran and hid.
They knew good and evil now, but it wasn't scientific knowledge. They already had plenty of that before the Fall. They were as innocent as babies, but that doesn't mean that they were not intelligent and educated. They simply had no concept of evil. All they knew before was goodness, but now they had an ever–increasing desire to use others for selfish purposes, and a steadily–increasing ingenuity for evil as they were sucked down into the whirling vortex of Self.
After they ate of the Forbidden Tree, Adam and Eve were trapped on an evil track of learning how to manipulate to get what they wanted, using both pleasant and unpleasant means. Pleasant means are flattery, bribery, sensuality, etc. Unpleasant means are sarcasm, ridicule, threats, blackmailing, and other types of verbal abuse, violence, drugging, tapping into demonic power, etc. It was only the divine intervention of God that broke them free of this spiritual death.
While they hid, Adam and Eve fretted about what was going to happen next. What was God going to say about such stupidity as this, letting a snake talk them into giving up their rights as rulers over the Earth? How would He punish them? They were now afraid of God.
Animals slunk away from the couple in bewilderment, sensing that something very horrible had happened that would affect them, as well as their beloved King and Queen. The Garden was eerily quiet as the animals lay still in their dens, shuddering under the heavy blanket of depression that had settled upon the Earth.
God knew from the start that His children would disobey Him and He knew immediately when it happened. He knew where they were hiding, and He went to them quickly so that they would not have to suffer any longer than necessary without hope, but He waited outside their hiding place long enough to give them a chance to respond to His call.
After enduring the silence for a while, God called out to them in an invitation for His children to be honest with Him and take responsibility for their actions. His love for them and His anguish over their alienation from Him and the suffering that they had commenced on filled His voice as it resounded through the air, reassuring them that He still loved them deeply.
This gave Adam and Eve the courage to finally creep forth and approach the Son of God. Besides that, with Him standing so near, it was obvious that He knew where they were. Perhaps they realized that things would go easier for them if they obeyed His call, than if they made Him yank them out of hiding forcibly.
They fell on their faces before their Maker. Adam went so far as to admit that he was not fit to stand before Him, but he hedged a lot about how he came to such a pass, handing off the blame to both Eve, and to God for giving Eve to him. Eve passed the blame off to the serpent, still inhabited as it was by the evil spirit that had taken it over. But even in the sternness of His pronouncements upon His children, God showed them the way out of their predicament.
He promised to send a Deliverer who would die for them; one of Adam's and Eve's own progeny. This method of salvation was also a reproof to them for listening to the serpent, for what sane parent would not suffer agonies see their innocent child die, especially if it is due to some folly of their own?
Further, they understood that it was God Himself who would take their punishment for them. He is the Judge, but also the Advocate who presents all the extenuating circumstances to lessen the sentence. Even so, the lightest punishment in Hell far exceeds the worst suffering on Earth, but our Advocate offers to take the punishment that we deserve, if we will turn away from our sinning. What amazing love and mercy!
By naming the Messiah "the Seed of the Woman," God reassured Eve that He understood that she was less to blame for her fall than her husband was for his. She had been deceived into thinking that the fruit would make her like God. Adam wasn't deceived at all. He saw the glory leave her, but he still took the fruit anyway.
As reparation for the blame that Adam tried to pass on to Eve, God allowed a woman the privilege of bearing a child without a man's participation in the act. A virgin would bring forth a child who would be a sinless sacrifice, a child who would grow to manhood, then pay the penalty for the sins of Mankind and regain title to the Earth.
Astonishingly, that child was the very Word Himself who stood before them, the Word who had shaped them with His own hands, and now promised to ransom them with His own blood when He gave up His Heavenly powers and came to Earth as a human. They must have felt shame that their sinning made it necessary for the Word to do this to redeem them, but also overwhelmed by His love that He would do such a thing for them.
The serpent was rebuked for his part in the Fall. The animal was stripped of its honour and demoted to being the lowest of creatures. The spirit that possessed the serpent was warned that its destruction and the destruction of his kingdom would be brought about by the special progeny of a woman, one of those humans whom he despised.
God also prophesied that the seed of the Serpent (people who were determined to follow satan) would hate the Deliverer (the seed of the woman),1 though for a human being to do that defies common sense. It's like sending a helicopter to rescue someone from the roof of a burning skyscraper, and they yell to the rescue worker, "Get that thing out of here! I hate helicopters!" The rescue worker yells back, "But it's the only way to save you!" The reply comes, "I don't care! I'll get out of this mess on my own!" Then they jump from the roof and go splat.
A sign of the coming Deliverer was the sacrifice of animals, innocent from sin (unlike Man), and these sacrifices would serve as a reminder of the promise. It drove home to Adam and Eve what they had done when they saw innocent, living creatures meet with death on their behalf.
These were their friends that had gambolled after them in adoration, whom they had engaged in hilarious playtimes, animals that had earnestly and loyally obeyed their commands. It horrified Adam and Eve to see their animal friends killed, the skins stripped off their bodies to make garments to cover their nakedness, the meat sliced up to be splayed upon a rock, then burned, and to even eat some of the cooked meat to acknowledge that the sacrifice was made on their behalf. Until then, they were fully vegetarian and the idea of eating an animal's flesh was absolutely shocking. It was necessary, however, to signify the receiving of the Messiah as their Saviour through His death, which was what Jesus/Yeshua meant when He spoke figuratively of eating His flesh.
Through this ceremony, God helped Adam and Eve realize that they could not cover their spiritual nakedness before Him through their own efforts, as symbolized by the aprons of fig leaves that they made for themselves, but they needed to rely on what the Deliverer would do for them some day. Only by the shedding of His innocent blood would there be any remission of sin. By putting their faith in God's promise of salvation, they were able to find their way back into an intimate relationship with God, no longer taking it for granted anymore as they had before.
They were garbed with the skins, another thing that shocked them. It represented the need to be covered with the righteousness of the Sinless One, but these were the skins of their animal friends that had talked to them and worked and played with them. Their blood stained the fleece and the inside of the hide.
Adam and Eve were then driven from the garden so that they could not eat from the Tree of Life. They had lost the privilege. Also, it would have locked them into their sin, if they had eaten of it. None of their children would have died, and then the Deliverer would not have a body that could be put to death for the sins of Mankind.
Adam and Eve and their offspring would have been forever burdened with their sins and locked into sinning, the burden becoming weightier and weightier until they were driven to complete insanity. They would have been forever separated from God and never again know love. Earth would have very shortly become total Hell. I think that it is also likely that the minute they ate from the Tree of Life, they would have felt like their bodies were on fire, because of the holiness of the fruit, and the pain would never stop.
God had not forbidden them before to eat of the Tree of Life, but they had found it repulsive. If they had been hungry for more of God, they would have been more curious about it. But they were happy just as they were. All their physical needs were taken care of. They were diverted by the pleasures of Eden and all the wonderful things to discover about Creation. God kept them company and explained a lot of things to them and was affectionate. But they didn't ask Him how He felt or what He thought. They sought deeper intimacy with each other, but not with Him.
God was waiting for Adam and Eve to get past their immature satisfaction with the status quo and start wondering about that tree. It looked ugly and its fruit smelled bitter, but they knew that eating of that tree would not harm them. Why not try it out and learn something about the mystery of God? Hunger for God is a very important attribute that we should all pray for to increase our intimacy with Him, lest we become spiritually stagnant, and holiness involves self–denial.
If Adam and Eve had eaten from the Tree of Life, though the initial taste may have been bitter, it would have turned sweet in their mouths and sent their understanding into super drive, giving them wisdom for ruling their kingdom that would have otherwise taken them years to acquire. The Tree of Life is the door to Everlasting Life in Heaven. It was a foreshadowing of the Cross; it looked cursed and dead and a failure, but it was actually the very opposite. If Adam and Eve had eaten from the Tree of Life, they probably never would have taken the forbidden fruit.
Angels drove them from the Garden and when they looked back, they saw that the Garden was now encased like a pearl, so it could not be entered from above nor tunneled into from beneath, and it had cherubim guarding the only gate, as well as a flaming sword that whirled in every direction, faster than lightning. Weeping bitter tears of remorse, they stumbled away to find a new place that they could make into a home.
1And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; it shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.
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The Majesty of God, Chapter 9