Tag Archives: Adam and Eve

Parson to Person


William Andrew Dillard

THREE REQUISITES FOR YOUR LIFE

Ask a group of people, almost any people, to prioritize the important requisites of life, and the answers received will not be a surprise. People prize education, wealth, fame, and the human concept of immortality. It is as a noted professor of sociology in a large northern university is reported to have said to a group of male students. “Get a good education, a good job, and a good wife. Those having these requisites possess the wellspring of life.” Well, this writer does not belittle these requisites by no means. They are good, and they are important, but it is obvious that many who have an abundance of these things are most unhappy. Material things do not satisfy the spiritual need of people, and a loving mate cannot substitute for that either. Think about it!
Mankind was created by the Creator/God of heaven and earth. He was created to live in harmony with God, and he was placed on the earth to make good decision for material creation as its lord. Boy, did sin ever interfere with that!!!
With sin came condemnation and death to the delight of the Destroyer. However, there are three things he had not counted on and could not foresee. In short those are love, blood, and the Word. Thinking surely he had won the creation when he successfully caused the sin and fall of Adam and Eve, which incorporated sin into the species inherently, how Satan must have rejoiced, but it was to be short-lived.
Enter, the manifested love of God per John 3:16. God would redeem His created beings by becoming one of them and succeeding where the first Adam failed. Moreover that love would extend into longsuffering through the ages. But it was the gift of God’s love that did the trick. The Lord Jesus came into the world to die for sinners. He could do so because He alone was qualified.
Additionally, He gave the Holy Spirit to this sphere of creation to convict of sin, righteousness, and judgment by which His unspeakable gift might be freely given to “whomsoever.” But that is not the end of the story. He made it possible for a remnant of the race to actually accomplish in spiritual maturity the purpose of their creation through His perfect Word.
So here it is, plain and simple: three requisites for your life. They are the Love that sought us, the Blood that bought us, and the Word that taught us to sanctification of life. The good news is that all three of them are accessed through the channel of faith. How great is God!??!

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Obey


 

šāma‘

Today’s Hebrew word is one of those that permeates the OT, appearing some 1,150 times, and having equivalents in Akkadian, Aramaic, Arabic, Ugaritic, and Ethiopic. Šāma‘ (H8085) basically means “to hear with the ear” with several shades of meaning derived from it that generally denote effective hearing, that is, truly listening. Ideas conveyed by šāma‘, then, are “paying attention, regarding, and obeying.”

The first occurrence of šāma‘ well illustrates the above concepts. After they sinned, Adam and Eve “heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day” (Gen_3:8). Here was, as many expositors believe, the pre-incarnate Word, the Lord Jesus, walking in the Garden. Adam and Eve recognized Him as such and knew fully how they had disobeyed His one and only command. We find šāma‘ again in Gen_3:10 and still again in Gen_3:17, where God told Adam that he “hearkened” (listened to, obeyed, or at least followed the lead of) his wife instead of His God.

We repeatedly find this word, therefore, in reference to obeying God. We are told to “hear the word of the LORD” (e.g., Isa_66:5; Jer_22:29), “hear [His] voice” (Isa_28:23), “[hearken] unto counsel” (Pro_12:15), and obey His law and “commandments” (Isa_42:24; Neh_9:16). Two passages that sum it all up are, “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD: And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might” (Deu_6:4-5), followed by the command to keep these words in one’s heart and teach them to your children (Deu_6:6-9). Those verses actually comprise the “Shema,” the basic confession of faith of Judaism recited both morning and evening.

The challenge to us today is both clear and convicting. As šāma‘ indicates “hearing with the intent to obey,” so does the Greek akouō (G191), which is how the Septuagint renders šāma‘ here. It means not only to hear in general (e.g., Mat_2:3), to hear with attention (e.g., Mar_4:3, “hearken”), and to understand (e.g., Mar_4:33), but also to obey (e.g., Luk_16:19-31). In a day when Christ is presented as a way to salvation without Lordship, and when Christian living is viewed as not involving strict obedience to anything definitive, Scripture’s emphasis on obedience has never been more critical.

Scriptures for Study: Who hears God, according to Pro_1:5 (cf. Pro_1:7)? To what should we hearken and what is the result in Pro_1:33; Pro_8:32-35? What comes by “hearing” in Rom_10:17?

 

 

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THE LIMITED AND THE LIMITLESS


Adam and Eve comic

AUTHOR – William Andrew Dillard

Parson to Person
There is a conceptual wall separating the mortal and the immortal. Man is finite. God is infinite. The finite simply does not comprehend to any appreciable degree the infinite. In simple terms, God put it simply this way: “As the heavens are high above the earth, so are my ways to your ways and my thoughts to your thoughts, saith the Lord.” Isa. 55. It then behooves us who are finite to accept in full the presentation of God and his work to man as recorded in Holy Writ while avoiding the temptation to sit in His chair to postulate what he knows, and by which principles He is bound.
Still, it is an apparent, favorite pastime of bible students to build tenets of faith on what they insist God does or does not know based on their finite reasoning of spiritual principles. Perhaps revisiting the book of Job would be helpful. He longed for a meeting with the Creator until he got one. There he found himself as helpless and mentally and spiritually inept as a toddler would be to run a factory.
A particular case in point is the Eden scenario. It goes something like this: God knew man would sin before He created the planet; therefore, Adam and Eve had no choice but to do what God foreknew they would do. That is fatalism, unfounded, and contrary to the whole presentation of the Bible. If such nonsense were true, God would not have given Adam and Eve the bone fide offer of eternal life in the fruit of a tree. Such would be simple mind games.
Alas! Adam and Eve did plunge themselves and their posterity into a world of sin and death by casting down that perfect order in Eden, but, Thank God, the Lord Jesus, the Christ stood as a Lamb slain from the casting down of that order. The entire interlude of sin in the world of men provides the opportunity to overcome it through the triumphant cross-work of the God-man: Jesus, and to see that perfect order restored in ages to come. Meanwhile sin is shown to have no intrinsic value by which it may claim right to continued existence other than in the hell reserved for its founder and practitioners who have rejected the grace of God. One may claim he does not understand all of this. Then welcome to the club. It is not to be understood, rather it is to be believed without reservation. By His own revelation to us, the “limited” may know and live the faith of the “Limitless.” This is only possible in Christ Jesus. This then is the emphasis of the resurrection; the meaning of Easter; the continuous first day of the week celebration of His churches through the age. Know Him then, and follow Him at all costs. The limited are on their way to becoming as the Limitless, and what a day that will be!

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Cain


 

Qayin

 

When we hear the name Cain, most of us probably think immediately of the first murderer and his heinous crime. But there is more here. The Hebrew is Qayin (H7014), which as most scholars agree is a play on the verb qānāh (H7069), “to buy, purchase, acquire, or possess.” This seems all the more apparent in what Eve herself says of Cain: “I have gotten [i.e., acquired, qānāh] a man from the LORD” (Gen_4:1).

 

It did not take long, however, for that blessed acquisition to take a turn for the worse, long before Cain’s murder of his brother Abel. Jude alludes to Cain’s real problem when he writes of apostates: “Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain” (Gen_4:11). The Greek for way is hodos (G3598), which literally refers to a road, highway, or street, but metaphorically to a course of conduct or way of thinking. So what was Cain’s way of thinking? That he could please God his own way.

 

What offering, then, did Cain bring, and why did God not accept it? Some teachers insist the problem was that Cain did not bring blood, as did Abel. Gen_3:21, it is argued, reveals that God taught Adam and Eve that blood had to be shed for sin, so this same knowledge was undoubtedly handed down to Cain and Abel.  The Hebrew, in fact, for the offering (April 17, 20) both men brought is minchāh (H4503), which does not refer to blood, rather the general idea of a gift. There are two Hebrew words used to translate this passage into english. The second is (H6529), meaning fruit. Therefore a fruit offering.Now we find with Abel brings a gift and (H1062) firstling of man or beast. Properly a blood offering such as was slain in the garden for Adam and Eve.

 

So why was Cain’s offering not accepted? We submit two reasons: First,it was not a bloody sacrifice that represented Christ our sacrifice. for Cain (in contrast to Abel bringing the “firstlings” (Gen_4:4). Second,Cain’s offering represented the ability of man to work his way to heaven. Third, it represented the pride of man in self ability in saving ourselves from condemnation.

 

What, then, is the way of Cain? The way of man. Cain’s way of thinking was that he could please God his own way. Christianity, however, is a life, a life found only in Christ by grace through faith.

 

Scriptures for Study: Read Mat_7:13-14, noting the two paths Jesus outlines. What does 1Jn_3:12 say about Cain?

 

 

 

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