THE BEGINNER’S GOSPEL
[This is Gospel presented in everyday language so as to be understood by everyone. It means there won’t be any ‘Biblical’ references made for the simple reason that it will only go unrecognized. It would also mean such terminologies as will be incoherent to readers in general will also be avoided.]
GOD AND GOSPEL
Who is God? Is He for real? What is He like? What is His Name? Is it possible to know Him and to interact with Him? Where does He live?
To most these are just some of many questions that remain unanswered. In spite of the fact that God has revealed Himself – FULLY AND ABSOLUTELY! It is another fact that constrained as we are by our glaring limitations we can only begin to fathom Him, if we may. Therefore, truth be told, the revelation of God is His blessed Invitation to us to partake of them – FULLY AND ETERNALLY!
To begin with, just as the very first question: ‘Who is God?’ clearly alludes to, the word ‘God’ is not a name. Exactly like how the word ‘man’ is not a name, but Jack is. So, God is the acknowledgement of a Singular Being. In other words, the word ‘God’ denotes the divine understanding of the existence of the Singular Being who is Supreme and Sovereign over all.
This is the reason there are those who choose not to acknowledge Him as if to suggest by ignoring Him they can actually wish Him away or by resisting Him they can overcome Him! Regardless, the Infallible Words and Irrefutable Deeds of God bear testament to the Indomitable Truth of His Invincible Existence.
Unbeknown to all, this relentless resistance on the part of Godless men is the reason God has reserved the full revelation of His holy and fully descriptive Name to those who will at the conclusion of all His works partake of it and enter His eternal rest with Him to dwell with Him eternally – WHEN HE WILL HIMSELF INDELIBLY WRITE IT ON THEIR FOREHEADS.
Therefore, any pretension or claim that one knows the Name of God is right away EXPOSED AS A LIE! As such, this calls for instantaneous discarding of all pretentious names that claim to be God. And, instead, it invites one to know Him for who He truly is, the fullness of Him, and to understand why He is God and why He matters MOST OF ALL!
MEANING OF GOSPEL:
The Gospel is God’s words. Simply put, it may be defined as an acronym for ‘God Spelt’. Because it is ‘God-spelt’ and spelt with a ‘divine purpose’ that concerns everyone, it is for everyone. It is the only thing in the world that makes perfect sense. It speaks of the past and reveals the future. It unravels untold mysteries and answers our questions that trouble our souls. It reveals God, Who is our Father, our Maker and our Provider. It provides the missing link in our lives and reconciles us to Him. It endows us with surpassing Wisdom, Knowledge Understanding and Power. It directs our path to the certain and blissful destination we do not even know exists. Thus it grants us His Purpose which most certainly is divined to make our lives truly meaningful and worthwhile.
God is the Beginning, and He is the End. It means, God is Eternal. In Him begins and in Him ends. Therefore, “IN THE BEGINNING GOD…. ” is how the Gospel begins. This beginning cannot be fathomed or measured for the simple reason that the eternal God had not yet created Time. What is Eternity or what is Timelessness can only be understood as we begin to grasp what is Time and why it was created.
Just as God Himself will not be revealed or understood unless He creates beings who are like Him, able to perceive and understand.
Why create? Because God is Creator. He does not procreate. He is Spirit. He does not have physical form. In other words, God is He who is not limited by Time or Form. And because He does not procreate He does not reproduce ‘Gods’. THUS THE DISTINCTION BETWEEN THE CREATOR AND THE CREATED WILL ALWAYS BE THERE NO MATTER HOW CLOSE A LIKENESS HE ASCRIBES TO THE CREATED BEINGS.
Yet God desired that His holy Abode be filled with such as them who’d share in His awesome Holiness and partake of all Its glorious and invincible splendor. This became His holy and sovereign Purpose – also called the Divine Purpose of God. (So anyone seeking the Will of God, need look no further. For, this is the holy Will of God concerning each one of us.)
However, in His awesome Omniscience, i.e. in His unimaginable and astounding all-encompassing foreknowledge, He also knew such superior beings will more likely challenge His Sovereignty than willingly yield to It and partake of Its glorious magnificence He so wished to grant them. Yet, He put His plan through. For in His Omnipotence, He had determined to bring it to fulfillment by the most Wonderful Plan ever.
He put His Grand Plan into motion with His Grand Works of Creation. As He began creating, He also began to make Himself fully and perfectly known. For, everything He created revealed more and more of His unending and surpassing wisdom, glory, power and holiness.
And, even though they have come to be collectively known as His ‘works of creation’, the true reality is that they are His words manifested as His works. For God sends forth His Word, which literally means He speaks all things into existence.
His Word or ‘the Word’ is the unifying term for all God’s words. (In fact, ascribing such unifying terms is how God establishes His Perfect Oneness so that we may begin to understand it.)
Thus, we learn, the Word was in Him right from the beginning. When He sends forth His Word or when God speaks, the Word displays His full power, wisdom, glory, holiness and majesty. Thus ‘the Word’ becomes the First Sign of God’s existence.
All creations that come into existence instantly respond to it, and their first understanding of God is that the Word is God.
GOD’S WORKS OF CREATION:
Of His total stages of creation works, which are three in all, two have been accomplished: first stage, the Creation of the ‘Invisible World’ and second stage, the Creation of the ‘Visible World’.
The third and the final stage is more aptly called the Re-Creation Stage, because it is essentially the work of re-creation and not merely a work of creation. Hence, it is also known as the Recreation of the Kingdom of God.
The reason being, He will establish His Kingdom after re-creating or regenerating His ‘rightful’ people from among mankind at the end of ‘time’. Where, in fulfillment of His Divine Purpose, He will dwell with them, His angels included, in the incorruptible and imperishable New World of His eternal Kingdom, eternally. Since it will become the very dwelling of God, it is also called Mount Zion, His Holy Temple. The rest of the creations will also be regenerated and renewed and will be called the New Heaven and the New Earth and will remain One and Inseparable from each other as with everything else for ever. We shall of course learn more of it in due course of time.
THE INVISIBLE WORLD OF THE SPIRITS
This world is called the invisible world simply because it is not visible to us. The supremely complex architecture of the world we live in is in itself, to be honest, too astounding for us. Even though we may believe we are familiar with it since it is visible to us. How much more so the invisible world! It immediately draws our attention to our obvious limitations, which is good really, because it is meant to help us accept why the other world is invisible to us presently.
However, just because it is invisible to us does not in any way suggest that we can shrug it off or deny its existence. Because, the revelation that the invisible world was followed by the visible world is a testament to the impact the former had on the latter. It is the impact which made it necessary for the visible world to come into existence, and it is this undeniable impact which is unmistakably felt even today by each one of us and will continue to be felt by all generations to come.
So, the creation of the ‘invisible world’ began with the creation of the ‘heavens’ and concluded with the creation of the ‘earth’. Thus, literally paving the way for the creation of the ‘visible word’, with the transition that took place from the heavens to the earth, from invisibility to visibility – THE SYMBOLIC ALLUSION TO THE FULL VISIBILITY THAT WILL BE THE RESULT OF ALL HIS CREATION WORKS.
Note the ‘heavens’ in plurality. It means the Highest Seat of God’s holy Abode began to be increased or extended farther into various lower strata, the reason for which will be made more and more apparent as the narration moves on. So, for instance, there came into existence the Paradise or Eden, also known as the Garden of God. It is also called the third heaven. Third, as in descending order from the Highest Heaven.
The primary reason God ascribes the first heavens in plurality is because it is only after His Work of Re-creation, their Oneness with one other, as with everything else, is possible. Until then, the Seat of God will remain the Highest Seat of the heavens, separated from the rest of the heavens as with the rest of His creations.
The brilliance of the heavens is the very brilliance of God. The richness therein, the very richness of its Source, inexpressible and too magnificent for us to discern. Yet, praise be to God, for thanks to His Gift of Gospel as we grow in His awareness, they shall also be revealed to us in due course of time.
He then created heavenly beings to live in them – uncountable number of them. They are spirits created in the likeness and image of the Spirit of God to proclaim the Spirit nature of God and are called ‘angels’. The second heaven or the nearest heaven to the Highest Heaven was ascribed to them.
Like God, they have no gender or physical form. But, each is resplendent in His Brilliance, Power, Wisdom and Beauty. Hence the invisible world is also called the ‘spirit world’. And the angels or the spirits – ‘the starry hosts of the heavens’. God assigned them each their individual names and calls them by their names.
THE FIRST REBELLION: THE FALL OF THE ANGELS AND ITS SIGNIFICANCE
Lucifer was created the most beautiful, wise and perfect of all angels. As perfect as a created being could get. In other words, this was the being who came closest to resembling God. God appointed him ‘guardian angel’ and gave him charge over the spirit world by placing him in Eden, the very Garden of God, luxuriant and abundant in riches and provisions. (It was so large it had four branches of the ‘River’ of God, or the river that flows from His throne, flowing in it – called four headwaters, watering and enriching it in every manner.)
His ways were blameless and perfect, so he could also enter the Highest Heaven, the very Presence of God.
However, just as was foreseen, before long, Lucifer began to grudge God His Sovereignty. In his pride, he began to imagine himself equal to God and decided to usurp His Throne – the Highest Heaven, the Most High Seat of God. He deceived all the angels he could and having garnered their support launched his great rebellion against God, his Maker and Provider. Thus Evil was born. And, since evil cannot co-exist with God, it was instantly separated from God.
Thus came about the creation of ‘the earth’, followed by the creation of ‘the deep’ and ‘the darkness’. Because of the holy separation that had taken place. And, also because of the Judgment that evil had invited upon itself, which by the way in His supreme wisdom God had decided to forestall until the fulfillment of His Divine Purpose. Plenty of time, one would notice, for Lucifer to repent of his evil and reconcile with God!!
However, once ‘evil’ was conceived and had reared its evil head, it has no other recourse but to meet its end. Because, ‘evil’ is self-destructive and hence a deadly poison. All who drink of it will likewise also perish.
Therefore, this separation of God and Evil is irreconcilable and eternal. That is why this separation began to be recognized as God’s ‘Right’ and God’s ‘Left’ respectively. Quite simply put, it means that God moves forward His Supreme and Divine Purpose along with those that are provenly ‘right’ with Him while the rest are ‘left’ behind.
This is how, Lucifer, who is since also recognized as the Devil or Satan, and his band of rebelling angels, came to be flung down into the earth, until Judgment had come to pass. They are since called ‘evil spirits’, ‘angels of Darkness’, ‘demons’ etc. They represent the exact opposite of all that is Godly, divine and pure – i.e. Godly virtues and characteristics.
No sooner had they been flung to the earth than they had corrupted it and rendered it void and formless. But God had just as soon plunged them to the very depths by covering it with ‘the darkness’ and ‘the deep’ – meaning impenetrable darkness and immeasurable depth of water.
And then the Spirit of God was revealed as He hovered over triumphantly and proceeded to begin the second stage of His creation works!
So, we see, the evil spirits are powerful in the sense that they are capable of great harm as already witnessed. However, they are also rendered powerless in the sense that they remain subjected to God and cannot do anything outside of His will or outside His pre-set boundaries.
AS FOR THE ANGELS WHO COULD NOT BE TAINTED, THEY REMAIN WITH GOD. THEY ARE SINCE ALSO CALLED ‘ANGELS OF LIGHT’. THEY HAVE THE POWER TO DO ALL GOD’S SUPERIOR AND HOLY BIDDING. THEY ARE ABSOLUTELY GUILELESS, AND THEREFORE THEY REJOICE IN WORSHIPING THE WORTHY GOD AT ALL TIMES. THEY ARE HOLY, BECAUSE PROVENLY, SIN AND DECEPTION HAVE NO POWER OVER THEM. THE AWESOME POWER, THE RADIANT BRILLIANCE AND THE HOLINESS WITH WHICH THEY ARE ENDOWED WITH MAY BE PERCEIVED BY THE REVELATION MADE LATER ON THAT THEY CAN EVEN STAND INSIDE THE SUN AND NOT BE SCORCHED.
CREATIONS REVEAL GOD, THAT HE IS ONE AND TRIUNE:
Before we continue with our narration, it is only right that we make a note of the knowledge of God acquired thus far:
The creation of the ‘spirit world’ in the image and likeness of God, i.e. of the Spirit of God, PROCLAIMS HIS SPIRIT NATURE. So that we learn God is Spirit and that He has no physical form. THAT HE IS MOST HOLY IS ALREADY ESTABLISHED IN HIS TRIUMPH OVER EVIL AND IN HIS ETERNAL AND IRREVOCABLE ALIENATION OF ‘EVIL’.
Thus the progressive understanding of God, which began with the knowledge that He is the Word now goes on to illuminate He is also the Holy Spirit. So that the knowledge of the Triune nature of God – unique only to Himself – begins to emerge! It means God is One and Triune, the Perfect Union of Three. Therefore, known as the Triune God or the Holy Trinity.
In summation, there is God, Who is the Word and also the Holy Spirit. The reason why He is God – Invincible and surpassingly Holy – in His Three times the Holiness, Three times the Awesome Omnipotence, Three times the Awesome Omniscience and Three times the surpassing Glory. To think that all the aforementioned revelations are condensed in the very first three verses of the Gospel is in itself too awesome and majestic a Testament to His Sovereignty! Too lofty for human faculties in fact, yet made understood thanks to the Spirit Who hovers over triumphantly (even as I pen this) to let us know. Of course as the narrative progresses and as His Divine Purpose unfolds with greater clarity, we will see more of the Triune God at work and glean better understanding and conviction.
THE VISIBLE WORLD OF MATTER
THE ‘VISIBLE’ WORLD:
As we had discovered, all that may be visible at first was a huge mass of shapelessness, emptiness and immense darkness of great depth. So, in order that visibility is granted in its full potential, God first speaks Light into existence. He then separates Light from Darkness, and calls them Day and Night respectively.
Also, NOTICEABLY, GOD CONTINUES WITH HIS WORK OF SEPARATION, THAT HAD BEGUN BY THE END OF HIS PREVIOUS WORK OF CREATION, ALONGSIDE HIS NEW WORK OF CREATION. This work of separation will continue until the end of ‘time’, when He shall finally bring His divine purpose to fulfillment and gather all His own. So, as He separates, it becomes clearer as to why.
INTRODUCTION OF TIME:
Another important revelation we cannot afford to let go amiss is that God also began this work of creation with the introduction of ‘Time’.
Time is making possible the concept of measurability of that which is otherwise abstract by fixing boundaries to it. So that we may learn that He has pre-ordained a prescribed span or a preset period before ALL His plans are brought to fulfillment. For, it is only after which that all His creations, all in whom will transcend His holiness and glory, will begin to dwell together with Him in the New Heaven and New Earth. Yes, the singular Heaven, also called the Kingdom of God, He will yet re-create.
Thus, this next stage of His creation work is marked by Time in the pattern of ‘seven’. In this case, ‘seven’ days: Six days for the creation works and concluding with the seventh-day of the Sabbath-rest of God. Because, all His future works until Time itself is no more, will be accomplished in the same pattern of ‘seven’ – each concluding with the Sabbath-rest of God to proclaim the eternal Sabbath-rest of God to come.
In all, God has allotted seventy ‘sevens’ – and that is the full measurement of Time.
Also, since this creation very symbolically moves from Darkness to Light, God counts off the days, proceeding from evening to morning, i.e. beginning with Night and ending with Day. This is very symbolic and significant because it prophesies creations’ ultimate redemption from the evil influence of Devil’s temporal kingdom of darkness into God’s eternal Kingdom of Light. The re-assertion of the symbolic transition from invisibility to total and transparent visibility already proclaimed!
So, with the creation of time, the days began to be marked off. And as God accomplished each creation by nightfall, the following dawn brought them to light.
In their order of succession, we may account them briefly as follows whilst also understanding their significance as we do so:-
The creation of Light and separation of Darkness and Light, evidenced by the names God gave them both – Night and Day respectively. Finally, concluded with the creation or introduction of Time, marked by the declaration of the end of day 1.
God spoke the ‘Sky’ into existence to keep apart the water above (which as we learned is known as ‘the River’) and the water below.
Again this is a very symbolic gesture. Because, some of the evil spirits that were flung down are imprisoned in the depths of the water below. Of the others, some are imprisoned in the depths of darkness, called dark dungeons or ‘Abyss’, while the rest (including Satan) are free to wander about so as to become the very first occupants of earth as it is brought out of its watery depths next.
The reason some are imprisoned is to prevent them from wreaking the havoc and destruction, they are particularly capable of, until their time when it will become inevitable.
God spoke and all the water below gathered to one place. He then let earth appear as dry ground, separated and free from its watery submersion. He called the dry ground ‘Land’ and the gathered waters ‘Seas’. God gave the land its shape and form and made mountains and valleys and, like Eden, enriched it with gold, aromatic resins, precious stones, metals and such other resources we discover as we unearth them.
CREATION OF THE MALE OF MAN – THE FIRST LIVING BEING OF THE VISIBLE WORLD:
The 3rd day also has great significance, in the sense that this is the day God creates the male of the man – THE FIRST OF THE TWO HALVES OF MANKIND.
When the dry ground made its appearance and before any form of life was created on it, God formed the male from the dust of the ground or literally, from the barren land. He then breathed life into him. Thus the male became the first of beings to be created in the visible world. It also means, he witnessed all the rest of the creation works.
Indeed this was the express purpose for which he became the first to be created. God then showed He had great plans for mankind. Therefore, the male was not put on earth but in Eden, the third heaven, or the newly vacated seat of God-ordained dominion, otherwise called, the Garden of Eden. The detailed understanding of the same will soon follow under the sub-heading ‘The Election of Mankind’ in the next chapter. For now, let us continue with the creation narrative.
CREATION OF VEGETATION:
After the male of man was created and God had put him in Eden, He brought forth first signs of life on the earth. He spoke vegetation into existence, and the land produced all kinds of trees and plants. They were fruit-bearing trees with seeds according to their kinds to help them multiply and likewise, plants that bore seeds according to their kinds. In His own holy appraisal they were “GOOD”.
God spoke all kinds of lights into existence on the sky above. Thus the sun, the moon and the stars were created. God also made the sun, the greater of the two lights, viz. the sun and the moon, to govern the Day, and the moon, the lesser light, to govern the night.
While the sun served to define the temporal Light of the visible world which God had created and called Day on the first day, the moon and the stars defined the Night, and together these lights helped mark seasons and days and years.
Now the greater significance of this is that all creations began to relate to the moving of the Spirit from timelessness to time and beyond, in such a way that there came about defined paths and defined momentum to these movements so as to be able to correspond with one another and govern and control times and seasons.
This is also to be understood as the foretelling of the events that will take place when they will finally lose their preset momentum and stray away from their pre-determined paths to herald the end of Time.
They were also “GOOD” in His holy appraisal.
God spoke living creatures into existence – creatures of the Seas and creatures of the Air. Thus the fishes – great and small, and birds of all kinds came into being.
He then blessed them so that they may be fruitful and increase in number and fill the seas and the earth respectively.
As we can see, when God created living creatures in the visible world, He created them with clearly defined and distinct physical forms just as He had given to everything else in it. So that, everything in it may be visible to our naked eye. Hence the name, ‘the visible world’!
He also created them according to their kind or variety (whether vegetation or creatures), and in pairs of gender compatibility, in order that they may be fruitful and multiply.
The significance of this is that they ARE NOT subjected to total destruction or annihilation by the corruption that will most definitely and is to take place soon. Indeed, they were also “GOOD” in His holy appraisal.
God spoke living creatures into existence on the Land. As we know them now, they are the different kinds of livestock, creatures that move along the ground and wild animals. And, in pairs, each after their own kind.
Significantly, the creatures of land are made differently from the creatures that are of the seas and the air: Like the male of the man, all land creatures are also formed out of the ground, i.e of the dust of the ground. This inherent uniformity among the land creatures will prove to be of vital importance in relation to all that will take place as time moves on.
Once again, they were also declared “GOOD” by His holy appraisal. This is so that we understand God is Good and that He created all things ‘good’.
CREATION OF THE FEMALE OF MAN – THE LAST OF ALL CREATIONS:
Before the end of the 6th Day, we come to the most important part of all God’s creations. Hence, it is only right that we bring it under a new sub-heading and learn of it in its full detail as its significance demands, viz., ‘The creation of mankind completed’.
THE CREATION OF MANKIND COMPLETED
The creation of the two worlds and their respective symbolism or significance is a testament to the Omniscient power and foreknowledge of God whereby He has everything pre-ordained and pre-ascertained for as and when their need would arise. This is why the Gospel is all-inclusive; even of the proclamation of His Judgment followed by the proclamation of His Salvation.
AND THIS IS THE REASON WHY GOD’S PLAN OF REDEMPTION FOR MANKIND BEGAN TO BE PROCLAIMED AND DEMONSTRATED EVEN BEFORE THE CREATION OF MANKIND.
As such it was necessary that ‘man’ was taught about it right away, as soon as they were created.
The male, having been created first, had the advantage of learning by witnessing it firsthand when God created the female. In other words, by the time the female was created, the male was fully equipped to take on the responsibility as God’s elect or God’s ‘SPOKESPERSON’ – to faithfully impart and teach all that he had freely acquired from God.
Let us learn all about it and of its immediate aftermath in detail before moving on to the actual creation of the female WHICH TOOK PLACE ONLY AFTER THESE REVELATIONS WERE MADE:
THE ELECTION OF MANKIND:
Let us understand that the election of mankind was established when God made the male of the man – the first of living beings in the visible world on the 3rd day, and the same made understood beyond all doubt when He created the female – the last of His creations, on the 6th day!
As it is unraveled for us, this is the holy testament concerning the same:
“THEN GOD SAID, ‘LET US MAKE MAN (MEANING MANKIND) IN OUR IMAGE, IN OUR LIKENESS (MEANING IN GOD’S TRIUNE IMAGE AND IN THE LIKENESS OF HIS PERFECT ONENESS), AND LET THEM RULE OVER THE FISH OF THE SEA AND THE BIRDS OF THE AIR, OVER ALL THE EARTH, AND OVER ALL THE CREATURES THAT MOVE ALONG THE GROUND.’
SO GOD CREATED MANKIND; MALE AND FEMALE HE CREATED THEM. GOD BLESSED THEM AND SAID TO THEM, ‘BE FRUITFUL AND INCREASE IN NUMBER; FILL THE EARTH AND SUBDUE IT. RULE OVER THE FISH OF THE SEA AND THE BIRDS OF THE AIR AND OVER EVERY LIVING CREATURE THAT MOVES ALONG THE GROUND.'”
Why rule and SUBDUE? Obviously because of the Devil and the fallen angels! Made evident by the specific mention of ‘every creature that moves along the ground’ as a prophetic warning or allusion to the allegiance such a creature would soon enter into with the devil to deceive them.
And why MALE AND FEMALE and a shared dominion? Because it served as the SYMBOLISM TO THE ETERNAL REIGN OF GOD AND HIS PEOPLE IN HIS KINGDOM! We shall of course soon glean more on the same.
Suffice it for now that after God had created all things according to His Divine Purpose, He created the female and introduced her into her God-ordained dominion by ascribing her the latter half of manhood. For ‘Man’ or ‘Mankind’, also known as ‘Adam’, was the God-ordained name ascribed to them at the very foretelling of the divine Blueprint, as testified above, by which they were to be created, more of which we will discover as we look closely into the creation of the female.
And once again, by ascribing them the common name ‘MAN’ He had unified them by His Perfect Oneness. It was made even more evident by the fact that God does not create her like He had the male – i.e. directly out of the dust – but out of the male! So that, THE TRUTH IS THE TWO BELONGED TO THE ONE AND THE SAME BODY!
As mentioned earlier, quite clearly God had desired that the male be given a head start so that he may learn of everything that was unfolding before his eyes by their true implications and thus be absolutely in the know. In order that, he may be fully enabled to prove himself as a worthy ‘spokesperson’ of God.
And because it was pre-ordained of God to make mankind the ruler of the visible world, as soon as the male was created, God places him in the Garden of Eden, as also the female, to take the place of the dethroned angel, Lucifer.
THE FIRST COVENANT:
In addition to all the superior blessings mankind was endowed with (of which we shall soon learn in detail), the male of the man who is already at an advantage also has the unique privilege of entering into a Covenant with God when he is personally entrusted with the first ever Word of God in the form of a single commandment.
THUS THE MALE BECOMES THE FIRST EVER RECIPIENT OF GOD’S WORD!
Receiving the Word or being entrusted with the Word of God is called entering into a Covenant with God. It is the divine responsibility entrusted to the one who receives it to keep it by diligent obedience and to guard it from all possible misuse or corruptions by imparting it faithfully.
So that, he was made the custodian or guardian of all God’s blessings entrusted to him – both material and Spiritual. Spiritual means Godly or Divine or of the Spirit. In this case, it was the Word. And it was,
“YOU ARE FREE TO EAT FROM ANY TREE IN THE GARDEN; BUT YOU MUST NOT EAT FROM THE TREE OF THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOOD AND EVIL, FOR WHEN YOU EAT OF IT YOU WILL SURELY DIE.”
Thus the male was the first one privileged to enter into a Covenant with God. Therefore the Covenant came to be known as the First Covenant.
THE SURPASSING COUNSEL OF GOD:
Clearly, this commandment was God’s surpassing counsel given to him. For it was more than a commandment. It was meant to safeguard him, and through him the rest of mankind, from the Judgment that had come upon the devil and his band of evil spirits.
Until the male had received God’s Word, we must understand, he only identified the Word as God which had the Power to bring all manner of things and beings into existence. However, since personally receiving His Word, he began to see God in a newer light. He saw that the Word which is God not only creates but also counsels to impart Wisdom, Knowledge, Power and Understanding.
Reverting to the commandment, which as we can see was very simple, really! Clearly, God meant Eden to be the holy abode of mankind from where they were to fill the earth and to rule and subdue the world beneath. All the goodness of God’s abundant provisions were given to them. He gave them all the fruit-bearing trees in Eden as food which by God’s own definition of food were both pleasing to the eye and good for food – EXCEPTING ONE! It was the ‘fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil’ that was in the middle of the Garden alongside the ‘tree of life’. God counsels him that it was NOT GOOD FOR FOOD since eating it would bring about CERTAIN DEATH.
That was all! Yet, right there was the Knowledge, Wisdom, Counsel and Power of God in display.
THE SEED OF REBELLION:
Unbeknown to the male, God had in His supreme knowledge perceived the SEED OF REBELLION taking root in him. Having received the Word of God, he had come to sense the supreme Power of God – which is the Power that can both create and destroy forever. He also knew the creation of the female would mean shared dominion. So, like the Lucifer of the ‘spirit world’, he conceived a most devious plan TO USURP NOT ONLY HIS SHARED DOMINION WITH THE FEMALE ALL FOR HIMSELF BUT ALSO THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD.
It grieved God to see what was going on in his mind. And He declares for the first time since His creation work of the visible world began, “IT IS NOT GOOD.” (Until then, as we have seen, He had in His holy appraisal declared everything He created in the material world, “GOOD”.) This was so that the male may be sufficiently warned that such a course would only lead all mankind astray AND THEREBY ESTRANGED FROM HIM FOREVER!
But of course, as was foreseen by God, the male was unrelenting. It meant the male was determined to put his plan through and break the holy Covenant. So God continues, “IT IS NOT GOOD FOR MAN (MEANING MANKIND) TO BE ALONE. I WILL MAKE A HELPER SUITABLE FOR HIM.”
In other words, God prophesies the inevitable outcome of the male’s actions while also proclaiming His awesome PLAN FOR THE REDEMPTION OF MANKIND. It meant that:
a) Though predictably the male would break the Covenant, God will yet accomplish His Divine Purpose by renewing His Covenant with the female who will prove herself the prophesied “SUITABLE HELPER” by faithfully honoring it and thus truly serving God and mankind. This Covenant is since called the New Covenant for the simple reason that it replaces the Old.
b) The creation of the female therefore PROCLAIMED HER ELECTION IN THE DIVINE PLAN OF GOD. This is why it is revealed of God, “MANY WHO ARE FIRST WILL BECOME LAST AND MANY WHO ARE LAST FIRST”, for she is the first fulfillment of the prophecy.
c) Therefore, while the male of the man represented the FALLEN AND ESTRANGED MANKIND, the female of the man represented the RECONCILED AND REUNITED MANKIND.
God then brings all the creatures of the land and air before the male to be named by him in order that by the names he’d give them his understanding and knowledge of them may be established. God then lets him call them by the names he had given them to also establish his reign or dominion over them.
It is after all above had transpired, that God creates the female who becomes both literally and symbolically the last of His creation works. So that this time, in His holy appraisal, again for the first time and surpassing all else, He declares, “IT WAS VERY GOOD.”
THE CREATION OF THE FEMALE OF THE MAN – THE LAST OF GOD’S CREATIONS:
Right away, the male learns that though all the creatures of the land are formed directly out of the ground, including him, the female was to be created differently. As he discovers why, just as it was alluded to earlier, HE ALSO LEARNS OF THE GREATER PLANNING THAT WENT IN WITHIN THE HOLY TRINITY BEFORE CREATING THEM.
For, as reference earlier, God first reveals their divine BLUEPRINT: In His image and in His likeness! Yes, the very Blueprint of God or the Triune image of God Most High. This is the reason mankind are the only beings to bear the Trinity image of God by their triune combination of the Body + Soul + Spirit of life.
Why? Because God created mankind in order:
a) To proclaim and establish His Triune nature;
b) To proclaim His First Coming as the Messiah or Savior of this world SINCE AS WE KNOW JUDGMENT HAD BECOME INEVITABLE, SALVATION HAD ALSO BECOME IMPERATIVE IN THE WONDERFUL PLAN OF GOD.
c) To proclaim the nature of Flesh He would come Incarnated in to make Himself undeniably visible and known to the world;
d) To enable mankind to discern between God and man, between Godliness or Holiness and worldliness or manliness and between eternal Life and temporal life;
e) To expose all lies and counter lies of demons and men that dared to vie with the infallible and irrefutable Truth by Himself fulfilling it, exemplifying it and reinstating it; and
f) To proclaim the Infallible Gospel or the New and Eternal Covenant of His Blood. That it is eternal is evidenced by the fact that it is the Divine Plan of God set in motion since the very beginning!
THE GOSPEL PROCLAIMED AND SYMBOLICALLY DEMONSTRATED:
And then, God proceeds to demonstrate by her creation exactly how SALVATION was to take place:
“SO THE LORD GOD CAUSED THE MALE TO FALL INTO A DEEP SLEEP, AND WHILE HE WAS SLEEPING, HE TOOK ONE OF THE MALE’S RIBS AND CLOSED UP THE PLACE WITH FLESH. THEN THE LORD GOD MADE A FEMALE FROM THE RIB HE HAD TAKEN OUT OF THE MALE, AND HE BROUGHT HER TO THE MALE.”
Indeed, as indicated, THIS WAS THE VERY DEMONSTRATION OF THE GOSPEL! For this is how the Messiah was to break His own eternal Body and shed His own eternal Lifeblood and Himself sleep the brief sleep of Death to bring forth His people or the redeemed from out of the fallen mankind. So that, having brought forth His redeemed from out of the fallen and estranged human race, they may be rightfully restored to Him and in Him – never to be taken apart!
THUS, BOTH BY THEIR CREATION, HAVING BEEN CREATED IN THE DIVINE BLUEPRINT OF THE LORD, AND BY THEIR REGENERATION, BY BEING BROUGHT FORTH BY THE LORD HIMSELF AND FROM HIS OWN ETERNAL BODY, SPIRIT AND BLOOD, GOD HAD TAUGHT THE MALE THAT THEY BELONGED TO HIM TWICE OVER AND THAT HE IS LITERALLY THE ROCK OUT OF WHOM THEY WERE CUT AND HEWN!
GOD IS THE FATHER AND THE MOTHER OF HIS PEOPLE:
What is more? He also taught him that not only is God their Father by virtue of the Creator-created relationship He ascribes to them as earthly beings, but also that God is their Mother by virtue of the breaking of His own Body and shedding of His own Blood to re-create them into heavenly beings of His perfect likeness. Yes, all our fountain is in Him and Him Alone!!
MORE ON MANKIND AND THEIR EDENIC EXISTENCE:
THE GREATER ELECTION AND CALLING OF MANKIND IS THUS ESTABLISHED FROM THE VERY BEGINNING, EVEN BEFORE THEIR CREATION! However, let us learn more of the true nature of their existence in Eden.
THEIR INHERENT ‘NAKEDNESS’:
Firstly, though mankind was placed in Eden, the higher heavens would neither be visible nor accessible to them. For we ought to also recognize, unlike Lucifer, they were neither created ‘perfect’ nor ‘full of wisdom’.
This was so that mankind would learn and grow by their continued dependency on God, Who took absolute delight in them and fellowshiped with them right from the beginning of their existence, as already evidenced.
This set the precedence to a Parent-child relationship, as mentioned earlier, between the Creator and the created. For all creations then followed suit, just as it was meant to be in the domain of mankind, and began to look to God their Father, their Maker and their Provider for their daily sustenance.
Mankind’s infantile dependency on God, in particular, was meant to generate in them the need to seek Him and to grow in His wisdom and His holiness so that they may become like heavenly beings and be able to dwell with Him forever.
This is the reason, in Spiritual terms mankind were said to be ‘naked’ when they were created, which obviously alludes to their inherent imperfection.
In other words, though they were crowned with glory and power and made superior to all creatures on the earth below, they were created A LITTLE LOWER THAN HEAVENLY BEINGS as is proven by their very placing and heavenly inaccessibility.
For, let us not forget, though the higher heavens or the invisible world will be invisible and inaccessible to them, Eden would continue to remain within the domain of the heavenly beings and perfectly accessible to them, just as the rest of the world that God had created would be. For, being spirits, angels are not limited in their movement.
THEIR FORETELLING OF THINGS TO COME:
Secondly, all advantages apart, in the context of the Gospel, prophetically speaking, THE MALE REPRESENTED THE ESTRANGED, CURSED AND DEPRAVED EXISTENCE OF MANKIND WHO WILL LIVE APART FROM THEIR GOD WHILE THE FEMALE REPRESENTED THE RECONCILED, BLESSED AND DIVINE EXISTENCE OF MANKIND WHO WILL DWELL WITH THEIR GOD. This is the reason, in God’s immediate appraisal of both their creation, He responded with “not good” and “very good” respectively.
UNDERSTANDING THEIR TRINITY IN WHICH THEY WERE CREATED:
Thirdly, as we have gleaned, since mankind was created to foretell the Coming of the Messiah, THEY ARE THE ONLY BEINGS CREATED IN THE ‘TRINITY’ IMAGE OF GOD.
Thus they receive a superior and glorious visible ‘BODY’ (which was obviously very unlike what the rest of the creatures were endowed with and most importantly, very unlike what we possess now); plus an intellectually superior and spiritually viable ‘SOUL’ – which is that intellectual and spiritual clubbed-into-one part within mankind with which they are able to think, process, assimilate, store and reproduce both seemingly abstract and creatively tangible matters whilst also enabling them to fellowship with God Most High; and lastly, ‘the very breath of God’s eternal life’, also called the ‘SPIRIT OF LIFE’ – which clearly means they were meant to live eternally.
In other words, by their TRIUNE AND PERFECT combination of Body, Soul and Spirit of Life, they had become the only ones to represent the Triune Self of God.
BLESSED TO MULTIPLY AND PRODUCE GODLY OFFSPRING:
FOURTHLY, ANOTHER VERY IMPORTANT FACT IS THAT MANKIND WAS NOT CREATED TO MULTIPLY IN THE MANNER OF THE BEASTS. THIS WAS ALSO THE REASON WHY GOD’S WORD, IN SPIRITUAL TERMS ALSO KNOWN AS GOD’S SEED, WAS GRANTED TO THEM. So that, just as it was revealed:
“HAS NOT THE LORD MADE THEM ONE? IN FLESH AND SPIRIT THEY ARE HIS. AND WHY ONE? BECAUSE HE WAS SEEKING GODLY OFFSPRING.”
For they were to multiply in the Spiritual manner and raise godly offspring in order that they may continue to rule over and subdue everything, more specifically and symbolically the ‘creatures that crawl along the ground’. IN OTHER WORDS, QUITE PROPHETICALLY, THEY WERE TO ALSO HAVE DOMINION OVER SATAN, WHO WILL FOR REASONS SOON-TO-BE-REVEALED WILL COME TO BE KNOWN AS ‘THE ANCIENT SERPENT’ OR ‘THE DRAGON’, AND HIS BAND OF EVIL SPIRITS.
THE PROCLAMATION OF THE WEDDING OF THE LAMB AND THE TWO COMINGS OF THE LORD:
Fifthly, by bringing the female to the male, God symbolized how He will Himself unite His people unto Him so that they may dwell with Him in His Kingdom as One. In Spiritual terms it is known as the ‘Wedding of the Lamb’, Lamb being the reference made to Him because of His vicarious and sacrificial death to take place for the atonement of the sins of mankind.
And thus came about the Spiritual terms ‘the Husband’ and ‘the Bride’. Because ‘Husband’ means ‘The Redeemer’, and ‘Bride’ means ‘The Redeemed’.
And this is why it was prophesied referring to His Coming that He will leave His Heavenly Abode to be united to His people, symbolizing the ‘Heavenly Marriage’ that is to take place.
And He will leave it NOT ONCE BUT TWICE – for the First Coming as well as for the Second Coming. While the First Coming will effect the ‘Spiritual Betrothal’ between God and His people, the Second Coming will effect the ‘Spiritual Wedding’ between God and His people.
And thus, transformed into their heavenly bodies at last, whether dead or alive, all His people will be regenerated and rejuvenated and gathered up unto Him in midair when He shall make His Second Appearance in all His True Heavenly Glory and Splendor and set the highest stage ever to reveal them to all those left behind below. What is more? The prophesied symbolic dominion of God and His people will at last come to fulfillment when He shall reign with His people on earth for a thousand ears and after that for eternity in His eternal Kingdom. THIS IS THE TRUE AND SPIRITUAL CONSUMMATION OF THE PROPHESIED WEDDING OF THE LAMB.
THE HOLY AND DIVINE WILL OF GOD:
Sixthly, in relation to the creatures of the earth, while God had granted mankind all fruit-bearing trees for food, the animals and birds were given the seed-bearing green plants for food. It also means there were no carnivorous beings. In other words, in the original scheme of things, no creations were flesh-eaters.
GOD HAD ALSO DEFINED FOOD TO HIM, EXPLAINING THAT IT IS THAT WHICH IS BOTH PLEASING TO THE EYE AND GOOD FOR FOOD. Very simple but also very meaningful as we will soon discover!
Also, as earlier mentioned, Eden has its four rivers though the earth had no rivers then. There were no rains either. Instead, earth was watered by springs or streams that came up from the earth. In other words, in Eden, there was no physical labor.
That is right, in the original scheme of things or in His holy will, there was to be no physical labor or toil. Not even the labor of weeding since there were no thorns or thistles either in the original scheme of things.
The will of God for all His creations right from the very beginning has been the pursuit of His holiness by diligent obedience of His Word and faithful imparting of the same. Blessed are those who come to the realization!
THE PROCLAMATION OF ETERNAL SABBATH-REST OF GOD:
SEVENTHLY AND LASTLY, GOD SPOKE THE SEVENTH-DAY IN TO EXISTENCE. HE CALLED IT THE SABBATH-REST OF GOD AND RESTED IN IT FROM ALL THE WORK OF CREATING THAT HE HAD DONE:
“BY THE SEVENTH DAY GOD HAD FINISHED THE WORK HE HAD BEEN DOING; SO ON THE SEVENTH DAY HE RESTED FROM ALL HIS WORK. AND GOD BLESSED THE SEVENTH DAY AND MADE IT HOLY, BECAUSE ON IT HE RESTED FROM ALL THE WORK OF CREATING THAT HE HAD DONE.”
Thus God taught mankind to keep the Sabbath holy on every seventh-day that would follow, by resting on it. This was in order that mankind may learn the HOLY WILL OF HIS ETERNAL REST so that they may continue to proclaim it and look forward to it even after their foreseen estrangement from Him.
This is therefore also called the Sabbath part of the Gospel. It foretells the ultimate, blissful and above all, restful future God has planned for all His own. It is the glorious Sabbath’s increase from a Day to Eternity. Meaning, while all the rest of the days will perish with Time, the Sabbath or the Day of the Lord shall prevail and increase unto eternity or Timelessness.
And so that there is no confusion, God has placed the seventh-day last, in such a way that every new cycle of days will begin with the first day that commemorates the day God created ‘Light’ and installed ‘Sun’ the temporal light of this world to govern it.
It means, as long as there is the ‘sun’ to govern the days of this world, this cycle will continue!
For in the eternal Kingdom of God, He will Himself be its Light and Glory, and there will be no sun or even the need for it. Just as it is revealed, “FOR THE LORD GOD IS A SUN AND SHIELD; THE LORD BESTOWS FAVOR AND HONOR; NO GOOD THING DOES HE WITHHOLD FROM THOSE WHOSE WALK IS BLAMELESS.”
The Sabbath, the only day God so symbolically named, is the day that will be everlasting. For from that Day, in other words, known as the Day ‘of His Second Coming’ onward, the Sabbath’s increase will begin and grow from a day to a thousand years on the earth and then on to eternity in the Kingdom of God.
Therefore SABBATH IS ALSO CALLED THE “DAY OF THE LORD”, AND THE LORD ALSO CALLED, “THE LORD OF THE SABBATH”.
SUMMARIZING ON ALL ABOVE IN THEIR SPIRITUAL CONTEXT:
Under no circumstances therefore we are to be misled in to believing that mankind, whether male or female, was created equal to God. While God is God Most High, invincible and above all, mankind was created as representations of His image and His likeness and for a purpose which we now know.
So, while God is the Plan, mankind is its proclamation. While God is from Above, mankind is from the earth below. Above all, let us not forget, while God is the Creator, mankind is only the created. And even though God’s Word had come to mankind, and will continue to come, they will never be the fullness of the Word which is the Lord Alone.
Also, quite unlike the spirit beings of the invisible world, we now know mankind was given the Gift of infantile dependency on God. The significance here alludes to the Divine Purpose of God. So that mankind may grow from being mere ‘created beings’ to becoming ‘sons of God’.
Why? Simply because He wishes to make mankind His co-heirs, as ‘son’ means ‘heir’. In other words, by becoming a Father to them, He desires to raise them as His sons or to be better understood, as His heirs.
This is why God Who has revealed Himself as the Father, having made Himself known as the Creator and the Provider of all things He created and is to create anew, shall come Incarnated in Flesh to reveal Himself as the Son, meaning as the Heir of all things He created and is to create anew.
This is also to teach mankind that God Who is the Living and Holy Spirit, is as much the Father by virtue of being their Creator and Provider as also the Son since being the Only One, He is the only Heir of all things He has created and is to create anew.
AND HOW DOES HE DEMONSTRATE IT, LEAVING NO STONES UNTURNED SO THAT IT IS ABSOLUTELY IRREFUTABLE?
First, in the light of the above revelation, we learn that “the Son” or God’s Word Incarnate is the “Firstborn” over all creations – the Word that was first sent forth even before the creation of the world.
Second, since He will be the First One to rise from the dead, following His holy Sacrifice, He is also the “Firstfruit” of Death.
Third, as we will soon discover, since He will Himself at last exemplify and fulfill the God-ordained ‘fruitfulness’ that was ascribed for mankind, which sadly they will never fulfill, He is also the “Firstfruit” of the womb in its divine and Godly sense:–Begotten not of the flesh, but of the Spirit and the Word. The Blessed Offspring of the woman, by virtue of the fact that her womb will provide for the divine surrogacy – He is the promised Son of God Who will triumph over the Enemy.
THUS, IN RELATION TO MANKIND, VERY SIMPLY PUT, IT MEANS GOD THE FATHER SEEKS TO GRANT MANKIND THE GIFT OF HIS ‘SONSHIP’ THROUGH GOD THE ONE AND ONLY WORTHY SON.
All this was revealed to man in the beginning itself in order that he may heed them and not go the devil’s way and be damned like him! Alas, to no avail! And it is that which we will see unfolding next.
THE FALL OF MANKIND:
No sooner had God created the female and brought her to the male, things began to take a turn for the worst! Pride got into his head. So that, instead of giving God the due glory and testifying to the Truth as they were revealed to him, he began to boast in himself. IN SO DOING, HE SPOKE THE FIRST EVER LIE AND PLANTED THE SEED OF IDOLATRY IN MANKIND.
He lied to her that since she was created out of him, she belonged to him, when the Truth is that he as the ‘created’ of mankind and she as the ‘re-created’ or ‘regenerated’ of mankind, both belong to the Lord Who Alone is the Heir of all things He created and is to create. And, he did not stop there. HE THEN INTRODUCED HIS NEXT LIE.
He told her, since she belonged to him her name would be ‘woman’ – literally, to remind her that she was taken out of him. Thus, literally and completely obliterating the Gospel from the word go!
For clearly, God had named them both ‘Man’ or ‘Adam’ – to remind them they were taken out of the ground, whether directly or indirectly, and as such were of the earth. Besides also the fact that the unique way in which she was created declared or demonstrated the Gospel, so symbolically and oh so clearly.
AND THOUGH ALL MANKIND CHOOSE TO REMAIN BLIND TO THE TRUTH, THE MALE WAS RIGHT AWAY EXPOSED IN HIS LIE FOR NO WOMAN SINCE WAS EVER BROUGHT FORTH OF MAN WHEREAS ALL MEN ARE SINCE BROUGHT FORTH OF THE WOMAN – BY THE BREAKING OF HER BODY AND SHEDDING OF HER BLOOD!
SO THAT TO THE GUILT AND SHAME OF EVEN THOSE WHO CLAIM TO NOT KNOWING THE GOSPEL, TRUTH STANDS AS AN INFALLIBLE TESTIMONY AGAINST ALL MEN.
So the lies did what they were meant to do. The woman, instead of remaining ‘God-tuned’ or ‘Godly’ as was intended of God (Who was the One her eyes had beheld first and Who was the One she had known from the beginning much before the male was even brought into the picture), turned ‘maleward’.
Thus idolatry, which began with Lucifer, had now grown to take root in mankind.
He then INTRODUCED HIS NEXT LIE WHICH UNBEKNOWN TO HIM WOULD, AT LAST, RECOIL ON HIM AND EXPOSE HIS SPIRIT OF REBELLION, THE SPIRIT OF ANTI-MESSIAH WITHIN HIM.
As it happened, he then passes on the ‘commandment’ to her; barely touching upon the Truth even though it was passed on to her as God’s Word. For emphasis, he’d also literally threatened (and not warned like God had done) her with the lie (for Truth only warns one of impending danger whereas lies threaten, to cover up for its impotency before the Omnipotence of God) that if she so much as touched the fruit of the tree that was in the middle of the garden she would die!
In other words, she did not even get to learn that it was actually called the ‘tree of the knowledge of good and evil’ because of which God had forbidden them from eating it. To her, it was the just ‘the tree in the middle of the garden’.
She was so completely misled by him, it never occurred to her to doubt him. Even though she felt none the wiser for it! While he appeared knowledgeable and wise about everything, she sensed her terrible lacking and yearned for Wisdom. Oh, yes, unbeknown to her, she was yearning for her God.
YET, SADLY, IT NEVER OCCURRED TO HER TO INQUIRE OR ASK OF THE LORD EITHER. And, it is THIS FOLLY WHICH WILL ULTIMATELY PROVE TO BE TOO COSTLY FOR HER. As for the male, unbeknown to her, his unfaithfulness and lies continued to multiply.
This is when Satan decides to strike, with the same temerity that he had employed to deceive the angels. He finds in the Serpent a willing accomplice to help him in his evil purpose and uses it to approach the female and speak to her.
Recognizing her hunger for wisdom, he deceived her into believing that the fruit would not kill her but in fact make her wise – as wise as God! Thus, literally countering and deposing the divine definition of food!! For indeed ‘food’ can never be the source of Divine Wisdom!
‘Food’, as God teaches from the beginning, if it is not good for eating WILL KILL and ‘Food’, if it is good for eating WILL NURTURE LIFE – THE TRUTHFUL AND IRREFUTABLE LESSON TO BE LEARNED BY HIS PLACING OF THE TWO TREES SIDE BY SIDE IN THE MIDDLE OF THE GARDEN.
But the devil had also seemingly proved his point, when the female upon touching the fruit realizes touching it hadn’t killed her as opposed to what she was led to believe. So seeing that there was no further reason to doubt devil’s lie, she takes some and eats of it whilst also offering some to the male who was with her all along.
Now that is something that is most noteworthy – that the male was with her all the time. It means he had every opportunity to avert the tragic outcome God had warned him about! Yet, he does nothing to prevent it. Instead, as soon as he was offered the fruit, he takes and eats it. OH YES, HE’D MADE HIS CHOICE KNOWN – DEATH OVER LIFE!
T H E J U D G M E N T O R D E A T H
A. THE TIME OF RECKONING:
Instantaneously, they were transformed. And just as God had forewarned, the Stamp of Death, also known as Judgment, had come upon them. NOT BECAUSE GOD INTENDED IT OR WISHED IT BUT AS WE CAN SEE BECAUSE ‘MAN’ CHOSE DEATH OVER LIFE FOR WE KNOW GOD HAD NOT FORBIDDEN THE TREE OF LIFE.
Yet, as it was with Lucifer and his rebellious gang, actual Judgment came to be forestalled by God for mankind too. It means they did not die altogether or drop dead instantly. Hence the allusion to it by the phrase, ‘the stamp of death’.
It was noticeable instantly though, because of the transformation that took place. Something died inside of them. It is called the ‘spiritual death’ of their souls. It simply means sin had entered their souls and alienated their souls from God.
It became pronounced outwardly too, by the undeniable exposure of their ‘nakedness’ or ‘imperfection’, which had now become visible to them in all its sin-stamped and loathsome shamefulness thanks to the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil they had eaten.
They were gripped with fear – a feeling absolutely foreign to them until then, and hence it is also known as the fear of the unknown because consequently they were at a loss to figure out how they could help themselves. They decided to cover themselves up. Looking about at the luxurious trees around them, they opted for a similar camouflage and sowed some fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.
However, in spite of the make-over, the new look, the new covering, their new-found confidence waned as soon as they heard God approaching. And they hid themselves, thus giving themselves away altogether!
THE MOMENT OF TRUTH HAD COME – THE TIME OF RECKONING, SO TO SPEAK!
And so they came face to Face with God. As usual. But this time guilt-ridden and shame-faced! So there they were, exposed to God, in spite of all the trouble they had taken to camouflage themselves and their sinful nakedness.
The male was quick to speak up when God called out to them. But he spoke up only for himself, for obviously to him it was just he who mattered. So he said to God he had hid himself because he was afraid as he was naked.
Too late, before he realized he had only made his guilt more obvious, for God then asked him who told him he was naked and that if he had eaten of the fruit He had commanded him not to! And, just as quickly, instead of being penitent, the male reveals his rebellious spirit and passes on the blame, first to God, for putting the woman there with him, and then to the woman, for giving the fruit to him.
The female, on the other hand, cowed down in every manner wouldn’t dare to speak at all. But when God speaks to her – He speaks to her in more of an exasperated expression than a querying tone, as He had with the male – to the effect of “What is this you have done!” She confesses to him in all honesty as to how the serpent had deceived her into eating the fruit.
And since she hadn’t yet realized (in fact she hasn’t realized it till date) that it was the male who had first deceived her by not teaching the commandment accurately, she does not mention him at all.
The serpent was of course not asked to proffer any explanation because his infamy for deception was well established. If anything, he merely goes on to validate the evil in him all the more and justify the irrevocable Judgment that had come upon him.
Before we move on to what transpired next, let us give the above narration the careful scrutiny and introspection it deserves:
As is obvious, let us understand, this ‘time of reckoning’ granted to the male and female was not meant to simulate the end-time holy ‘Court of God’. Rather, it was meant to expose them all the more for exactly as they were.
Let us not forget, God, Who is All-wise and All-knowing does not require them to produce anything by way of evidence or self-defense. This is the reason, He does not settle with the reply the male had given Him. But He does settle with the truthful confession of the female, knowing also fully well the vital role the male had to play in their collective disobedience.
And, by making them speak up, HE HAD ALSO WANTED THE FEMALE TO LEARN AND ACKNOWLEDGE A FEW HOME-TRUTHS. OH YES, HE HAD BEGUN TO IMPART HIS UNPARALLELED WISDOM. IF ONLY WOMEN WOULD PAY HEED!
WHY THE FEMALE IN PARTICULAR?
Because, the Old Covenant with the male was broken as a result of his unfaithfulness and disobedience – just as was expected and revealed by God during their creation.
So, the time had come for God to reveal His Eternal Covenant – since also known as the New Covenant – by choosing or electing the female for it. FOR, AS WAS DEMONSTRATED BY HER CREATION, THE DOOMED FUTURE OF MANKIND WAS TO BE ALTERED IN HER AND THROUGH HER APPOINTMENT.
Now, to enumerate the home-truths that was revealed to her at the time:
1. That she may recognize the unfaithfulness of the male – both towards God and towards her.
2. That she may learn the male was directly responsible for the disobedience as it was to him He had entrusted the commandment to be imparted faithfully.
3. That she may understand that she was an individual in her own right and therefore directly answerable to God and no one else.
4. Lastly, that she may learn that God had AT NO TIME TAKEN AWAY HER BLESSED PRIVILEGE TO SPEAK, INQUIRE, ASK AND FELLOWSHIP WITH HIM DIRECTLY.
Note how recognizing these facts was very crucial to the future of all mankind in general and to the future of women in particular. But, sadly, it was not to be! We will soon find out why!
B. THE REVELATION OF ETERNAL BLESSING AND TEMPORAL CURSES:
Let us now move on to the curses and the Blessing which is the next course of events, our narration takes us to. Now as we know Death had yet to manifest itself fully. So, meantime, God explains to them the full implication of all that they had invited upon themselves. How they were transformed from being blessed to being cursed and what will ensue for them from now on.
So, let us begin with the devil, who had since become synonymous with the Serpent and is therefore also known as ‘the ancient serpent’ or ‘the dragon’, who is the first to learn how it will live the rest of its life until Death or Judgment overtakes it completely:
THE TRUE IMPLICATIONS OF SATAN’S CURSED EXISTENCE:
1. The serpent is irrevocably cursed above all creations of the land for choosing to serve as an instrument of the Devil. As a result, ‘the serpent’ or ‘the dragon’ serves as the symbol of ‘Undying Enmity with God’.
He is the almost-mythical Leviathan, owing to the fact he keeps himself well concealed in the depths while his offspring continue to fill the land and is noticed instantly as they crawl about on their bellies.
2. Because of it, all creatures of the land will also suffer as the serpent had thrown open the possibility for evil spirits to take residence in the creatures of the land. As a result, Death will permeate into them.
Clearly, the way we observe it now is not the way God had created them or the way their lives were meant to end!
3. The serpent and all its offspring will now onward lose their limbs and instead crawl on their bellies. As it is written, it will crawl on its belly and eat dust all its life. It symbolizes the abject fallenness (so that it will never rise again) or depravity of the serpent.
It also exposes it for what it actually is – the devourer of all created beings of God, i.e. of both mankind and other creatures of the ‘land’ (hence the words ‘eat dust’ as they are all formed of the dust).
The only difference being, while the former will be devoured by deception, the latter will be devoured by its cannibalistic spirit sourced from its unholy alliance with the devil. A SIGN OF THE EVIL TO COME WHEN ANIMALS WILL TURN CARNIVOROUS AND EVEN THE MOST UNLIKELY OF THEM WILL BECOME INSTRUMENTAL IN TAKING LIFE – EVEN THAT OF THE LIFE OF MANKIND. So that, it will invite Judgment on the animal world too.
4. Next, it learns how it will meet its end and by Whom. Now this is the culmination of its curse. But, since it is our Enemy, its end also means the dawn of our Blessedness back again.
IT IS THUS WE DISCOVER THE UNRAVELING OF THE NEW BUT ETERNAL COVENANT OF GOD WITH THE FEMALE. It means, this is the Covenant that was, and is, and is meant to be forever. WE LEARN THAT GOD ELECTS HER BY BLESSING HER WITH THE DIVINE AND ETERNAL ENMITY WITH THE SERPENT OR THE DEVIL.
Thus God’s first act of separation of good and evil comes about once again after the fall of mankind. And noteworthy is that it is inherently divined in the female only.
5. Since this enmity is both eternal and divine, it is that which will help us identify the Promised Messiah for He will bring about the end of the Enemy and deliver all God’s creation from the cursed existence they were subjected to because of it. Its ultimate end or the absolute finality on it being that which will take place just before the eternal Kingdom of God is established in the New Heaven and Earth.
6. And when the Messiah comes, the unique manner in which He will come is – as the Offspring of the female. IN OTHER WORDS, THE MALE WILL HAVE ABSOLUTELY NO ROLE IN THE REDEMPTION PLAN OF GOD FOR MANKIND.
7. At His Coming, the enmity on the part of the devil will surface even more pronounced than ever as it will right away seek to thwart His purpose. Yet, for all its evil ploys, the Offspring of the female will triumph over it – His triumph symbolized by the words, ‘He will crush his head’.
However, at a price! For, as He has planned, He will Himself shoulder the wages of the sins of mankind – which is Death. In other words, He will allow the devil to strike at His heel, which is the symbolism for His vicarious Sacrifice (or death) on behalf of mankind. For, only He may thus enter Death as He Alone is the One over Whom Death has no power.
THE TRUE IMPLICATIONS OF THE FEMALE’S CURSED EXISTENCE:
Thus, having first made His plan for mankind’s redemption known through the prophesied cursed end of the Enemy, God then moves on to reveal to them the full implication of the cursed existence they had invited upon themselves. He lets them know how it will affect them individually and collectively as a people.
So that they may understand their only escape or freedom is in His redemption revealed once again through Satan’s Curse and made available to them through the Promised Son, the Blessed Offspring of the female.
THE FEMALE’S CURSE IS AN EXCLUSIVE CURSE. It is more a choice actually. For, unlike the serpent’s curse and that of the male’s, which will be revealed shortly, her cursedness does not permeate beyond herself.
IT IS THE CURSED EXISTENCE OF ONLY THOSE FEMALES WHO LIKE THE FIRST ONE WILL COMMIT THE FOLLY OF TURNING TOWARD THE MALE INSTEAD OF TURNING TOWARD GOD – FOR EVERYTHING AND IN EVERYTHING!
So the choice whether the females want to live their curse or their blessedness is entirely upon them.
BUT THE BIG QUESTION IS, WHETHER SHE WILL BE ALLOWED TO EXERCISE HER GOD-ORDAINED CHOICE? For once having subjected to her curse, she will soon discover, it will be next to impossible for her to extricate herself from it, which explains why things are as they are!
Here is the cursedness of all females who will continue in the folly of their first mother, TRULY AN EYE-OPENER NONE SHOULD IGNORE:
1. Because she had not lived up to the power and dominion God had endowed her with and had instead submitted herself to the male right away, she will find it most difficult to escape him who has since, and unbeknown to her, secretly allied himself with the devil to become her enemy.
In other words, in order to escape the curse she will have to rise to her full potential in the Lord and triumph against her enemies – both enemy no.1 and the enemy no.2 who will both work in such perfect unison she will have difficulty to discern between the two if she does not turn to God for the Wisdom.
And indeed, it is God’s Wisdom which Alone can save her – for, while the former enmity is blessing in disguise, the latter enmity is in effect the curse in disguise, and the knot they will together tie her in to will be too complicated for her to untie on her own and escape. So that every other path of wisdom she will pursue will only tighten their hold over her!
2. It means she will remain subjected to him – who to her misery is now fully exposed as the fallen man and who has not only usurped power and dominion from her but also from God to become the ruler of not just her universe but also of the entire world! As a result, she becomes the symbol of submission and subjection to oppression.
FOR, GOD ALLOWS HIM THE SOLE DOMINION – UNTIL THE END OF TIME, I.E. UNTIL THE HIDDEN BEHEMOTH IN HIM IS FULLY EXPOSED, WHEN HE AND HIS DOOMED KINGDOM WILL FALL NEVER TO RISE AGAIN.
3. It also means, she who had once the lofty and just desire for Wisdom (literally meaning for God) will now be subjected to a cursed desire for the male, who will impersonate himself as her ‘redeemer’ or ‘husband’ and lure her away from her God and from her divine calling and election to instead serve and revere him.
4. Thus, she who was once ordained to rule along with him in the perfect Oneness of God, will now onward be severely estranged from him as to be totally subjected to his cursed, oppressive and hateful dominion.
5. Because of which, she who is called to partake in the divine redemption plan of God to be the mother of the Divine Offspring, will now onward be forced to conceive and give birth to the cursed children of his seeds instead.
And since it is against the holy Will of God, the cursedness of it will show forth in the painful conception and childbirth that she will endure.
In spite of her Calling, in spite of her inherent Blessedness, and most importantly, in spite of living and experiencing the oppressive dominion of the male in every aspect of her life and suffering the terrible consequences of it in every manner – physically, mentally, emotionally and above all, spiritually, IT IS BEYOND APPALLING HOW SHE WILL ADAMANTLY CONTINUE IN IT AND LITERALLY REFUSE TO COME OUT OF IT. This is true of almost all of them as is so evident all around us!!!
THE TRUE IMPLICATIONS OF THE MALE’S CURSED EXISTENCE:
1. To begin with, of the two, but of course, only he was charged with actual disobedience. Therefore, he becomes responsible for the curse that will transcend itself in to all creations of this world, beginning with the ground out of which he was formed.
(So that the present world, as we see it now, with all its heavenly bodies in the sky above, the clouds, the rains, and on the earth below – the hills and the mountains, the valleys, the birds, the animals, the reptiles, the insects, the seas and the rivers, the fields and the flowers, the desert and the wasteland etc. etc., everything in it will be defiled and corrupted because of him. For, in his undying idolatry, he will cause everything in the created world, from the greatest to the smallest, to receive worship and reverence.)
2. So that, for example, the ground will now onward produce thorns and thistles.
It is symbolic in more ways than one, for ‘thorns and thistles’ represent degeneration, disintegration, decay and death, that have penetrated in all nature, and ultimately causing this world in its present condition to fully and absolutely pass away.
3. Therefore they also foretell the generation of the wicked who will also likewise pass away.
FOR IT MEANS, LIKE THE SEEDS OF LIES THAT HE BEGAN PLANTING (AND OBVIOUSLY WILL CONTINUE TO PLANT, UNREPENTANT AS HE IS) WHICH HAS RAISED NOTHING BUT A HARVEST OF WOES FOR HIM, HIS SEEDS OF FLESH THAT HE WILL SOON BEGIN PRODUCING WILL RAISE NOTHING BUT A WOEFUL HARVEST OF THE PERISHING AND A RATHER LENGTHY GENERATION OF THE SINFUL AND THE WICKED.
4. As regards the ground to which he is to be displaced from Eden, he will have to himself work it and produce his own food.
It means since the Edenic array of lavish spread is no longer at his disposal, he will include seed-bearing plants in his diet. And in order to cultivate it, he will have to put in heavy labor by first weeding the thorn and thistle infested ground, then watering it and readying it before he can even begin to sow them. In other words, just as it is written, heat and sweat will be the means by which he will feed himself and his lot.
5. He becomes the symbol of the ‘spirit of anti-Messiah’ or the ‘anti-God’. Therefore, he is the prophesied Behemoth of the land who keeps himself concealed as he goes about plotting and scheming to gain complete dominion over the entire world so that he may realize his evil intentions fully.
It means, even though he will retain the power and dominion, and now solely, he will be totally estranged from God. Having broken the holy Covenant and remaining unrepentant, he will choose to go his own rebellious way and ally himself with the Enemy who will grant him his evil power, his pseudo-authority and all his corrupted knowledge with which he first went about deceiving the angels while he lived in the heavens above.
So that, Satan may work through him (having already misled him in to believing that it is he who may grant him the power and authority) while himself attempting to gain all power and authority over the world, knowing fully well that he could avail of the time while he may before his ultimate end catches up with him.
THIS IS WHY THE MALE WILL NOW ONWARD BE KNOWN AS THE ‘THE RULER’ OF THE PEOPLE, ‘THE PRINCE OF DARKNESS’, THE ‘PRINCE OF THIS WORLD’ ETC., AND THE WORLD IN TURN WILL BE CALLED, ‘THE MAN’S WORLD’!
This is the evil power and authority he will exercise to corrupt all that is in this world, so that soon everything will begin to function and behave out of their pre-ordained character. For example, the days will become increasingly hot. Calamities of massively destructive scale will become commonplace in nature and show forth as famines, volcanoes, earthquakes, landslides, tsunamis, hurricanes, cyclones and floods. Stars will begin to travel off course and plunge on to the earth to cause massive destruction. There will be tell-tale signs on the heavens above and the earth below.
To make matters worse, he who began by waging war with God will go on to wage wars with fellow men as they multiply, and with everything that comes in his path. Wars will become the order of his days on earth TILL THE VERY END OF HIS REIGN when it will be manifested in such an unimaginable proportion that it is best explained by revealing that in the end, the whole world will ally with him to wage war with the Lord at His Second Coming.
The end of his reign, which because he in his undying arrogance refuses to open his eyes to and see, will nevertheless come about at the end of the time God has allotted to him. For, finally, before his end, the evil Behemoth that he is will be fully revealed as he will truly have his heart’s desire fulfilled at last and he will gain total power and authority over the whole world. WHEN, AT LAST THE WHOLE WORLD WOULD HAVE GONE SO FAR ASTRAY FROM ITS GOD THAT EVERYONE AND EVERYTHING IN IT WILL SUBMIT TO HIM AND WORSHIP HIM. The abomination that will cause desolation, standing where it does not belong!! And that will mark the beginning of the end when at last he and everything in his world he corrupted will meet their total end.
6. This is made possible because of his own volition he chose Death over Life. So that Death reigns over him. This stamp of Death has sealed his fate. It is the legacy that will be unmistakably passed on to all his sons, who will in turn continue to plant seeds of Death in all their progeny and make victims of them all.
This time though, Death will manifest itself in such a way that what began as the ‘Spiritual death’ will now overtake him and his generation as the ‘physical death’. So that it is undeniably visible to all. And one after another, everyone will return to the dust they were taken from. THE CONSTANT AND UNSHAKEABLE REMINDER OF WHO WE ARE NO MATTER TO WHAT HEIGHTS WE MAY RISE DURING OUR BRIEF TIME ON EARTH!
The most noteworthy fact we ought not to let go amiss here is that Death has yet to be realized fully. For even though from now onward all mankind who are born to the male, including himself, will die physically, the third part of their trinity will still be alive.
It means, mankind cannot die fully until every aspect of their triune self has met its end. The third and the undying aspect of them is that aspect which will come before its God on the Day of Judgment and only then meet its end.
THE SEPARATION OR ESTRANGEMENT OF MANKIND FROM GOD:
Thus, like Lucifer and the rebelling angels before them, mankind also came to be separated or estranged from their God. Banished from Eden, they are now sent to live on the earth below. Also, having chosen Death over Life, they now came to forfeit their right to the ‘tree of life’, and it became unreachable to them just like Eden.
God shielded the Garden from man with the sheer brilliance of His Light which the newly appointed cherubim and his flashing sword provided. This ensured they would not access the ‘tree of life’ and live eternally in their sinful state, separated from Him forever in their guilt and shame.
It was also meant to create in them the need for His divine reconciliation. So that, having thus been reconciled to Him, and made holy, they would not only enter Heaven and dwell with Him but also once again freely access the Garden of God including the ‘tree of life’ – just as it was purposed by Him from the beginning.
God then made garments of skin and clothed them. Whilst this gave them a new physical identity which would help them survive on earth, it also provided for the temporal covering for their naked souls.
THE BEGINNING OF THE REIGN OF MAN:
Immediately upon their arrival on the earth, the dominion that had come to mankind, from the time they were created, took on the nature of ‘sole dominion’ of the male. And it began to show forth right away as he went about willfully changing and subverting everything that God had now revealed to them both.
And just as it was pre-determined by God, his evil reign on earth will continue until almost the very end. That is, until the Second Coming of the Messiah, when it will be brought to its end and all enemies of God will at last face their eternal Judgment.
Right from the beginning of his evil reign, his pervading rules of dominion have been laid down:
1. THE CORRUPT DOCTRINE OF MALE SUPERIORITY:
Since he remains unrepentant, he persists in his first lie of self-glorification. Thus the corrupt doctrine of male superiority comes in to force absolutely in contravention to the Truth. IN ORDER TO GIVE CREDIBILITY TO HIS LIE, HE DISTORTS THE WORD OF GOD AND BEGINS PROPAGATING THE NEXT LIE THAT BECAUSE GOD HAD DETERMINED IT WAS NOT GOOD FOR THE MALE TO BE ALONE, HE HAD CREATED THE FEMALE, AND THAT HE HAD CREATED HER TO BE HIS HELPER.
Whereas the Truth is that God had said, “It was not good for man (meaning mankind) to be alone”, which is why He had re-created the FEMALE FROM OUT OF THE MALE to represent His regenerated people or the re-created, WHO WILL BE RE-GENERATED FROM OUT OF MANKIND, who will be blessed with the blessed reconciliation of God and will no longer have to live alone or apart from their God. What is more? Her divine calling and election is also made known right away. For, she is one who is identified as the helper of God. It means she will be recognized by her fruits – her deeds and words – for they will not contradict the Word of God but at all times concur with it so that she might fulfill His purpose in her and raise a blessed harvest of His children of the Spirit and the Word, which is also known as His Seed, in her.
Of course, the male, who has since also usurped the name ‘man’ or ‘Adam’ entirely for himself to prove his point, would have none of it. In the world of his sole dominion, the female or the woman as he calls her for obvious reasons, is inferior to him in every way – intellectually, physically and of course ‘Spiritually’!! Yes, Spiritually too, for he continues to ignore the fact that the Old Covenant had ceased to exist.
So she has no choice but to be absolutely subjected to him in every way – serving him, obeying him and basically living to do his bidding only. Literally, worshiping him in every manner as time moved on. And not God! Both in the pretext of his feigned superiority and in the pretext of his feigned ‘spirituality’!
He intended to keep it that way at all times, for this is something he would ensure is drilled in to every female from now onward. For he had determined to exercise his power and authority at all levels and punish her most severely for any so-called acts of disobedience to him.
2. THE VILE AND OPPRESSIVE DOCTRINE OF FEMALE SUBSERVIENCE:
Thus, as soon as they were banished from Eden and thereby from the holy Proximity or Presence of God, the male seized the opportunity, and subjects her to his oppressive dominion.
SO THAT, EVEN THOUGH OF THE THREE RECIPIENTS OF CURSES, SHE WAS THE ONLY ONE WHO COULD CHOOSE WHETHER TO BE SUBJECTED TO HER CURSE OR NOT, THE VERY CHOICE OR THE RIGHT TO CHOOSE ITSELF CAME TO BE DENIED TO HER.
Thus she who was God-ordained to together rule with her male counterpart and subdue everything given over to them in the visible world, instead came to be subjected to his rule and dominion over her.
Moreover, what is also important to note is that he now hated her with a vengeance and blamed her for his newfound plight. In his blind hatred, he secretly allies himself with the Devil who as we know is now the sworn-enemy of the woman.
Consequently, the spirit of anti-Messiah in him combined with his ‘reinforced’ hatred for the woman manifests itself into severe persecution and untold misery upon her. So much so that in spite of her Calling, her Election, she will remain subjected to him, and it will be a long time before she is even able to ready herself sufficiently to begin fulfilling her Calling.
BUT FOR THE MERCY, ALMIGHTY POWER AND PROVISIONS OF GOD IT WOULD HAVE NEVER BEEN POSSIBLE, AND ALL MANKIND WOULD HAVE PERISHED.
Ultimately, this hatred would have so manifested itself that when the last of the ‘anti-Messiahs’ is revealed, he will himself become instrumental in destroying her and her children – all of whom who had remained faithful to him till the end, revering him, desiring him and willfully submitting themselves to him!
ONLY SHE WHO RETURNS TO HER GOD AND LEADS HER CHILDREN LIKEWISE WILL TRIUMPH OVER HIM AND HIS EVIL INFLUENCE AND ESCAPE HIS PERSECUTION, UNSCATHED, IN THE END.
In other words, THE WAY OF THE CROSS was already determined by him. The bitter cup of suffering and rejection put in place.
3. INTRODUCTION OF THE FALSE DOCTRINE OF ONENESS IN THE FLESH:
The Perfect Oneness of God, the likeness of which they were created in, obviously became marred in them ever since the male began plotting against the female. Yet, noticing that Death had not come to reign upon her, he begins to seek the ‘Promised Son’ out of his own flesh – through her! To that effect, he once again changes her name to “Eve” – meaning mother of all the living. Indeed, hoping that she would birth the living by his seeds.
And, to that effect, he introduces the false doctrine of the oneness in the flesh, thus completely subverting the Perfect Oneness of God revealed to them.
SINCE THEN THE PROPHESY OF THE ‘WEDDING OF THE LAMB’ BEGAN TO BE IGNORED AS IT WAS REPLACED BY THE FALSE DOCTRINE OF UNION OF MALE AND FEMALE IN THE FLESH.
AND THUS INSTEAD OF THE SPIRITUAL DESIRE FOR ONE’S GOD, SOON THE CURSED DESIRE FOR THE MALE BECAME THE NEW NORM FOR ALL FEMALES. Little do they realize, even now, how it is meant to keep them subjected to the cursed male dominion that had come over them!
Right away, the new doctrine of the union of flesh brought forth fresh trouble to Eve, as she began to be subjected to physical oppression as well.
And when she conceives and gives birth to her first child in great pain and agony, just as it was prophesied she would, she realizes she would not have survived it if it weren’t for God’s grace and mercy upon her. And rightfully, she accords Him all due praises and glory. A clear sign to the Spiritual revival of her soul!
4. THE SELF-GLORIFYING OBSESSION OF SON-SEEKING IN HIS OWN FLESH:
The fallacy of seeking the Promised Son in his own flesh and by his own seed came to be exposed soon enough. By the death of his younger son Abel, who was murdered by his wayward and envious brother Cain!
So that, the name ‘Eve’ had also stopped making sense as right away he was proved wrong. Instead of being the ‘mother of all the living’ she had now become the ‘mother of the dead’.
[Yet, praise be to God for having set her apart as ‘the living’, i.e. by symbolically and literally not subjecting her to Death that had come to reign over the male, God does fulfill her rather prophetic calling as ‘the mother of all the living’ in the Spiritual way. For she does not die physically as obviously she is revived Spiritually (about which we shall learn soon enough), so that all who are likewise revived enter the list of the living which she heads.]
But, as far as Adam was concerned, son-seeking had now become an obsession. Soon, he goes on to have a third son, to take the place of his firstborn. For he had lost both his previous sons as God had banished Cain farther away for murdering his brother.
The death of his son Abel in particular ought to have opened his eyes to their now inherent mortality. But, Adam in his undying pride, remained blind to it so that soon ‘son-seeking’ that had become an obsession with him, becomes the greatest obsession of all mankind.
5. SABBATH TOTALLY IGNORED AND DESECRATED:
The eternal covenant of Sabbath introduced with the introduction of the seventh-day to proclaim the eternal Sabbath-rest of God, the only hope of mankind, came to be totally ignored and disregarded. So that, it will be a long time, before mankind will begin to heed God’s Word well enough to learn of it again.
THUS, FROM CHANGING GOD-ORDAINED NAMES, MAN HAD COME AS FAR IN GUILT AS TO ALSO CHANGING THE SET TIMES AND LAWS OF GOD!
6. THE MALE’S FALSE CLAIM TO THE IMAGE AND LIKENESS OF GOD:
In order to keep the woman subjected to him, as we know he had at the beginning itself introduced the false notion of his superiority over her. So that he began to claim only he was created in the image and likeness of God, all the while remaining adamantly insistent that she was only taken out from him.
Again, this lie is also right away exposed in more ways than one as they donned their new physical body. With their now warped trinity of a perishable physical body, Spiritually dead soul and the temporal life-spirit of man, they had evidently lost the former glory of the image and likeness of God.
SO THAT, EVEN THE CHILDREN BORN TO THEM EVIDENTLY BORE NOT THE LOST IMAGE AND LIKENESS OF GOD BUT THE IMAGE AND LIKENESS OF THEIR FALLEN FATHER.
However, the lies of man did not waiver. This corrupt teaching has since so deluded mankind that all mankind have since come to equate the image of God (Who, as we know, is Spirit) to the physical image of man, or rather the male of man. And before long, the male image came to be idolized and deified all over the world. To them God was no longer a Spiritual Being! But a sexual being, identified in the sexuality or the male gender of man. The focus had completely shifted from God the Creator to man the procreator.
And even though God repeatedly seeks to open man’s eyes by closing the womb and rendering a lot of them impotent or infertile, mankind refuses to learn. They defy God all the more by leaning on their own understanding, their own knowledge – the so-called scientific findings and continue to increase in their wretched cursedness!
This was the ultimate corruption, and this is why the ultimate exposure of all mankind will manifest at the coming of the lawless one, the last of the anti-Messiahs, who will lead the whole world in to worshiping him, thus committing the worst of all sacrileges – THE ABOMINATION THAT CAUSES DESOLATION, STANDING WHERE IT DOES NOT BELONG!
7. DEATH WAS NO LONGER A THREAT, BUT A WEAPON IN THE HAND OF MAN:
By the time his first child was born, his sinful soul had begun to beget its own offspring. And it presented itself soon enough, when Death that was until then perceived as only a threat began to take shape as a ‘Weapon’ in his evil mind. In other words, the evil dominion of man became even more sinister as Death began to be employed as his own personal ‘tool of destruction’. It gave him the superficial, but nevertheless deadly, sense of power.
His perverted sense of ‘justice’ is noteworthy, for it is ultimately this evil dogma of violence laid down by his firstborn, Cain, with which man will rule or exercise his politics of power play. And just as it began on the trail of persecution and killing of all True worshipers set ablaze by Cain, it will be brought to its sudden and abrupt end on the same note, when all like him would have been fully exposed.
IT IS ALSO THE FORETELLING OF ITS UNPARALLELED AND HEINOUS MANIFESTATION OR CULMINATION in the prophesied ‘striking of the heel’ of the Messiah – Satan’s little time-framed victory over the Messiah that he will carry out through man, his secret ally.
Thus, even before physical death could catch up naturally with man, and at its own slow pace allowing for ample time for repentance and reconciliation with God – for those days mankind lived up to almost a thousand years (eg. Adam lived up to 930 years) – man had himself by resisting the latter executed it and had consequently moved from being ‘the herald of death’ to ‘Death’s own executioner’, the very tool of Death.
As a result, all sense of Justice and Righteousness came to an abrupt halt, as man had now exalted himself as the ‘judge’ and ‘advocate’ with his perverted take on God’s holy laws. As time moved on, violence became a way of life for mankind, leaving no room for Love and Compassion of God.
IN FACT, HE EVEN WENT AS FAR AS METING OUT HIS PERVERTED JUSTICE ON ALL WHO OPPOSED HIM, AND HE CONTINUALLY BLASPHEMED GOD BY TAKING HIS HOLY NAME TO JUSTIFY HIS EVIL DEEDS.
For he had also inevitably, and before long, realized he had met his match in fellow males like him – all of whom would contend with one another in violence and strife, until the very end, dividing his kingdom into tiniest fragments possible and bringing it to absolute ruin with their own bloodied hands.
It is therefore of utmost importance that we understand: WHILE THE FACT THAT SATAN AND HIS GANG OF EVIL SPIRITS, FOLLOWED BY MANKIND, CONTINUE TO SURVIVE IS A TESTAMENT TO GOD’S UNPARALLELED SENSE OF JUSTICE AND RIGHTEOUSNESS, THE KILLINGS AND MURDERS THAT MAN CARRIES OUT BY THE MINUTE AND IN SCORES EVERY SINGLE DAY IS A TESTAMENT TO THE DEPRAVITY AND PERVERSION OF MAN’S UNPARALLELED EVIL.
8. THE PARADIGM SHIFT IN THE REVEALED KNOWLEDGE OF THE FIRSTBORN:
Soon enough, the True Knowledge of the Firstborn or the Firstfruit of God underwent the complete paradigm shift and man began to instead glory in his own firstborn. And even though his folly was right away exposed, he continued in it, relentless and unrepentant, until it had become the only accepted norm in the human society.
Once again, this became evident right from the days of the first family. This is why after Adam had irrevocably lost Cain to banishment because of Abel’s murder, he has another son, Seth, to replace him as his firstborn. Quite obviously, it was to assign Seth the revered place of honor, his name is mentioned and not that of any other of Adam’s many sons and daughters who followed afterwards.
And it is also most noteworthy here that Eve on the other hand nurtured different ideas. But of course! And it serves as another testament to her ongoing Spiritual revival. For unlike Adam, she had Spiritually deemed that Seth would take the place of Abel and not Cain’s, and glorifies God for granting her the same. And, it is because of this Spiritual insight of hers, there is notably a ‘brief lull’ in the spiritual decline of mankind as at that time all mankind in this part of the world had once again begun to call on the Name of the Lord.
SUMMARIZING ON ALL ABOVE: While these are the immediate changes brought about during Adam’s reign on earth, it sets the precedence for all rules of oppression and subjugation that will follow, growing in intensity as mankind multiplies and scatters farther apart.
What is more? We must also realize as ‘divine alienation’ separates mankind farther and farther apart both from one another and most importantly from God, so that men are completely given over to their evil inclinations, man begins to thrive in his bigotry and leads his family, his clan, his tribe, his race and his nation likewise depending on how
much he has multiplied. Until he has deeply entrenched himself in a place of no-return! And as women are subjugated more and more, all traces of Spiritual revival that had begun in Eve gradually disappears, leaving scarcely any hope for her offspring of the flesh.
However, praise be to God Almighty, for while man is exposed in every manner, His Love endures forever and His compassions, they fail not!
SO, BEFORE WE CONTINUE WITH MAN’S EXPLOITS, LET US RETURN TO THE FIRST FAMILY AND LEARN HOW GOD ON THE OTHER HAND REFUSED TO ABANDON HIS PEOPLE. EXACTLY IN KEEPING WITH HIS PERFECT PLAN OF REDEMPTION HE WILL BRING FOR MANKIND THAT HE WILL HIMSELF BRING TO FULFILLMENT!
THE FIRST FAMILY
Thus, as is obvious from the beginning, God had no desire to abandon mankind. He made it very evident when He replaced their ‘good-for-nothing’ and ‘gone-with-the-wind’ covering of leaves with the garment of skin He had Himself made for them. A firm message to all who may be so inclined, to continue to look to God for their True Deliverance in all matters!
It soon became obvious only Eve would lend Him a willing ear. For, she had given all glory to God when her first son was born to her with much difficulty. So He continues to speak to Eve and brings her His Word.
SINCE THEN, IT BECAME A SIGN OF THE GODLY. FOR THE FAITHFUL CONTINUE TO BE ENTRUSTED WITH HIS WORD MORE AND MORE.
Thus, for her faithfulness, Eve was revealed the Wonderful Truth that the Promised Messiah, the Son of God, is the Firstborn over all creation. So that she may not commit the sin of idolatry by glorying in her sons who cannot and therefore will not bring them the desired deliverance from their cursed existence, which we know is only possible through the Son of God. And that she may seek His Face at all times and teach her sons also to do likewise.
THUS SHE IMPARTS THE KNOWLEDGE OF TRUE WORSHIP TO HER SONS – WHICH WE OUGHT TO UNDERSTAND IS ONLY POSSIBLE IF WORSHIP IS BASED ON THE TRUTH OR THE TRUE KNOWLEDGE OF GOD. In other words, the Spirit imparts Truth, and only in Spirit and in Truth, True Worship is possible.
But when her sons had grown sufficiently to bring their own offerings to God, Cain, who was wayward like his father, does not honor God according to the revelation he had received. In his self-effusing glorying, he had begun to deem himself as the firstborn.
He was a farmer. Thus, instead of offering some of the first-fruits from his yields as a testimony to the revelations he had received of the Coming Son of God as the True First-fruit of the womb and of Death, he just makes an offering of randomly collected fruits of the soil he had cultivated, and literally corrupts the knowledge of God he had received and defiles himself by the wrongful offering.
Abel, on the other hand was a shepherd, and he makes an offering of fat portion from some of the firstborn of his flock as a testimony to the holy and perfect Sacrifice of the Son of God, the True Firstborn, Who is to be the True Lamb of God and truly honors God by His offering.
This deservedly brings him the favor of God. But Cain becomes envious of him. Seeing that he was plotting evil against his brother, God warns Cain beforehand of the sin that was going to take hold of him if he did not heed His warning. Exactly in the manner God had forewarned his father before him. But like his father, he ignores God’s warning and lures his brother to a lonely spot and murders him there. And, once again, just like his father, when confronted by God with the query as to where was Abel, he refuses to acknowledge his guilt and retaliates with the now infamous statement, “Am I my brother’s keeper?”
CAIN ESTRANGED AND BANISHED FARTHER AWAY FROM GOD
Consequently, time had now come for Cain to be banished farther from the Presence of God. For the land had become defiled due to bloodshed. And it cannot be atoned for or, in other words, Abel’s blood cannot be silenced until it was avenged. It would mean that Cain would have to die too. But God spares his life, and this is why He banishes him farther away from his presence.
Now, Cain was aware that Satan and scores of other evil spirits wandered about freely on earth. He began to fear for his life and pleaded with God to spare his life from all possible harm. God then puts a mark on Cain as a warning to the evil spirits so that none would dare harm him in any way. THIS FAITHFUL AND LOVING GESTURE OF GOD WILL IN THE LONG RUN PROVE TO BE THE SYMBOLIC CANOPY OF SHELTER HE WILL HIMSELF PROVIDE FOR HIS PEOPLE ON THE DAY OF HIS WRATH.
It is also noteworthy that God grants Cain ‘a wife’, so that he may multiply in the land he will choose for himself and not utterly perish in his banishment. What man can fathom God’s Justice? For undeniably if it weren’t for the supreme Justice of God all mankind would be utterly lost forever.
Let us remember and be warned here that the Gospel clearly mentions the word ‘wife’ and not ‘sister’ – i.e. “Cain lay with his wife..” Yet, to the shame and gross ignorance of the churches, they have propagated the lie that the first sons had taken their sisters as wives since as they conclude there were no other women about. In so doing, they have not only undermined the provisions of God, but to their indelibly stained and sinful disgrace, the unparalleled holiness of God also. BECAUSE THEN, IT WOULD SERVE AS THE GREATEST TESTIMONY AGAINST THEM AND EXPOSE TO WHAT DEPTHS THEY HAD FALLEN TO VIOLATE GOD’S HOLY LAWS!
Cain prospers in the land of Nod, described as positioned to the east of Eden. He and his family thrive and increase on the land. His descendants go on to become artisans and musicians, and prosper in the work of tent-making and tool-making out of various metals like bronze and iron. They remain wanderers, in the manner of their father Cain, and live the nomadic way of life.
Cain, in his time, builds a city and names it after his son Enoch. It quite obviously means that glorying in one’s son of the flesh and particularly in one’s firstborn had become entrenched in Cain’s world of relentless idolatry. In other words, Cain continues in his wayward spirit and leads his family likewise. And soon enough, as his family grows and multiplies steadily into many generations, before long, by the fifth generation i.e., the second murder had come to pass.
By this time the sin of unfaithfulness in man had also begun to manifest by the taking of multiple wives. FOR LAMECH, HERE, WHO IS THE SECOND MURDERER IN THE HISTORY OF MANKIND, BECOMES THE ‘FATHER OF ALL ADULTERERS’ WHEN HE TAKES UNTO HIMSELF TWO WIVES AND THUS INTRODUCING THE SIN OF ADULTERY OF THE FLESH TO MANKIND.
Though details of the incident of the second murder is not available, except that Lamech was at first injured (though not fatally) by one youth which is what leads to the murder, what is important to understand here is that the murderer had immediately assumed God will spare him just as He had Cain! And rather unwittingly declares if Cain was avenged seven times, he, Lamech, would be avenged ‘seventy’-seven times. Quite obviously, he was hoping should he be murdered in return he will be avenged for as long as mankind will reign on earth!!
This serves as the onset of blasphemous interpretation of God’s Mercy and Justice in the world of men. Men who had had no relationship with God, who had never turned to God, who had never sought or received His Word, who remained unrepentant and immersed in their wayward and sinful ways, would simply as and when it suited them pretend to lean on God’s Word so that they may justify themselves before the eyes of fellow-men.
It is thanks to such as these that where seemingly the Word of God is preached is where the most evil of men are found! In today’s term we identify it as religion – which is nothing but a covering for man to pursue his evil inclinations undetected. SO THAT GOD HAS DECREED, HIS JUDGMENT, WHICH WILL FINALLY COME TO PASS ON THE DAY OF HIS WRATH, WILL BEGIN WITH SUCH AS THESE.
Thus, on the heels of ‘politics’ of power play, religion began to be conceived in the hearts of idolatrous men. Soon as time moves on, we will discover that while the more openly brazen among men opt for politics to exercise their power and authority, the subtler ones will achieve the same through the innumerable religions they will plant to build their own little kingdoms of supposed ‘divine sanction’.
ADAM’S BLOODLINE THROUGH HIS SON SETH:
As earlier alluded to, for a short while after Seth was born, people in Adam’s part of land had begun to call on the Name of the Lord. However, it didn’t last long as they went about with their business of living and raising sons after sons for their glory.
BUT THE FACT REMAINS THAT GOD’S WORD KEPT COMING TO MEN AS TO THOSE OF WHOM IT CAME, THEY BEGAN TO BE CALLED ‘SONS OF GOD’. They would begin to obey and teach the Word for a while, but would soon slip in to their sinful and wayward ways and stray farther away from God. Just like their first father!
Where the firstborn was concerned, as long as the firstborns lived, all eyes would be riveted on them. The rest of the sons and daughters merely faded into insignificance. As was the case with Adam’s own family!
And then came about the first natural physical death, with the death of Adam, who had invited the curse upon himself and through him unto every son born to him or his bloodline – whether on Cain’s side or Seth’s side of the family. THUS ADAM HAD RETURNED TO DUST AT LAST OUT OF WHICH HE WAS FORMED AT THE TRULY RIPE OLD-AGE OF 930 YEARS.
EVE, THE MOTHER OF ALL THE LIVING:
Now, what is remarkably obvious here is that Eve’s death is not mentioned. The simple reason being that EVE HAD NOT DIED! For what we ought not to forget is that the curse of physical death had only come upon the male, and through him unto all his sons who will like him bear the Stamp of death on them. It means, as a result, all daughters born to them will also die since they will fall victims to the curse that is upon their fathers by whose cursed seeds they are conceived. So, even though for a while their deaths are not mentioned, hardly surprising considering that they themselves are given scant notice, the not mentioning of Eve’s death is no coincidence.
For, Eve, unlike the daughters of men, was not born of the cursed seed of the fallen man. So the curse of physical death had not come upon her. Perfectly in keeping with the supreme and divine plan of God! For, as we learned, she was revived Spiritually, and so God had entered her into her rest. It is the rest set apart for all His redeemed until the time of their revelation at His Second Coming.
This is the reason, the name ‘Eve’ given to her by Adam became prophetically true of her since she had indeed BECOME THE MOTHER OF ALL THE LIVING. We shall soon discover how it is made possible. By the example of Enoch.
By the 6th generation, Enoch was born. By this time, all mankind had gone far astray from God so that at the age of 65, by when Enoch had himself had a son of his own, he was the only one to have returned to God. He began to walk in close fellowship with God, so that it is written, ‘Enoch walked with God’. And the Spiritual revival of Enoch was so remarkable that He remained in the close fellowship of God the rest of his life and God had in turn entered him also in to His rest, in spite of his innate curse. Thus Enoch became the first of men to enter into his rest, overriding his innate curse of physical death. Clearly, a lesson to all to return to God and to be reconciled and reunited to Him!
However, once again, the message just didn’t get across to them as they continued to keep their eyes riveted on their firstborn sons as each took their turns to be born and die in the end, just like everybody else. The waywardness of men continued undeterred. As more and more generations were added to their line, men refused to learn the Truth or actually turn to God.
So that, by the time Noah was born in the 8th generation, Lamech, his father had declared that Noah was going to be the much-awaited for Redeemer!
Quite obviously another big folly! For, from the lessons of Eve and Enoch, it becomes clear that though one is able to save oneself, if one may, no one can save another. This is why neither Eve nor Enoch could take anybody else with them. Each one is responsible for one’s life, and each one should make one’s own choice.
THE FIRST CALLING – THE CALLING OF NOAH:
By this time mankind had multiplied to great numbers and scattered to farther parts of the earth. All of them, without exception, were living in sin and depravity. Those, to whom the Word of God had come, refused to heed it. In fact, they pursued the evil inclinations of their hearts and openly violated God’s laws by taking unto themselves any number of wives as they chose.
This was also the time when most men were of giant-size, who lived entirely by the strength of their brawn and earned glory and renown for themselves by it. Like the modern-day wrestlers and weight-lifters, these he-men were called ‘Nephilim’. Today, even though exact likeness of them is not found, the show of man-power by the sheer force of their brute strength is one of the chiefest pursuits of all mankind no matter to which part of the world they belong to.
So there they were – all mankind during Noah’s time, none of whom who sought God or His righteousness. So that earth had become completely corrupt and was full of violence. It aggrieved God very much that He had made ‘man’ on the earth. For as they multiplied, each one, like their first father, refused to heed God’s Word and continually and rebelliously CHOSE DEATH OVER LIFE. Literally, challenging God to His Face if He’d dare to bring the dreaded Judgment on them!
However, as we know, God is not challenged by evil mortals, for He had already made known that His Spirit would not strive with the spirit of man forever. He had fixed a particular period of time for that. After that they’d get exactly what they had chosen.
Therefore, God instead decides to give them a taste of His infallible Word so that it may serve as a witness to the whole world after them. To that end, He chooses Noah and calls Him and sets Him apart to serve His purpose. THIS WILL BE THE FIRST OF THE CALLING OF MEN SINCE THE OLD COVENANT CAME TO BE BROKEN. AND AS WE WILL SOON FIND OUT JUST AS THIS CALLING LIKE ALL THE FUTURE CALLINGS WILL ONLY GO ON TO ESTABLISH AND ASCERTAIN THE FACT THAT INDEED THE OLD COVENANT OF GOD WITH MAN IS BROKEN SO THAT MANKIND MAY LEARN TO ABSOLUTELY TURN TO GOD AND LOOK TO HIM AND HIM ALONE FOR THEIR REDEMPTION.
Now, Noah, to begin with was a righteous man. He was born as the firstborn in the 8th generation in Seth’s bloodline to Lamech. And as soon as Lamech had set eyes on his firstborn, he had declared that he would be the prophesied Redeemer who’d redeem his people from their cursed existence. All anticipations were raised as Lamech in his determination had raised Noah to be a God-fearing and righteous man. In fact, at the time, Noah was the one only to be singled out as a righteous person even in the sight of God.
But when God called Noah at the age of 480 years and set him apart to serve Him as His spokesperson and to do everything just as He’d tell him to, none, not even Lamech would listen to him and heed the message he brought them from God. Only his small family which consisted of his wife and three sons and their wives who’d joined them soon enough, would listen to him and heed his words. Eight members in all.
But what is important that we do not let go amiss is the fact that thus when the hope of mankind was once again revived by the calling of Noah, God began by making it very evident at the outset itself that Noah’s calling would include everyone in his household. In other words, everyone in his household will partake of the same calling. Just as it was since the beginning when God had created mankind – for God had called mankind in the perfect Oneness of His Triune self to together rule and subdue! All God’s calling comes in the Oneness of the Spirit, and it does not eliminate anyone in man’s household. Not even the slaves or servants or even their cattle, as we will discover soon enough. And most definitely it does not exclude any of his offspring, whether firstborn or latter-born
God then told Noah to preach to the people for 120 years so that they may be given every opportunity to repent before they witness what was going to come upon the world in the form of divine Judgment during their time – the first sampling of His real Judgment as it would come upon the entire world!
AT LAST THE FIRST SAMPLING OF GOD’S JUDGMENT!:
The essence of the message preached was this: That God was going to send rain upon the earth. For forty days and forty nights! That it would destroy everyone who does not repent of one’s evil ways and turn to God to follow His righteous ways.
Now no man had ever seen a rain before, as until that time God had not sent rain upon the earth. Earth, as we have already learned, was watered by the springs that flowed from under the earth. So they refused to believe Noah and only scoffed at him for suggesting something as ridiculous and unheard of a thing as the ‘rain’! They laughed at him all the more, as Noah also went about building a mammoth-sized ark with the help of his sons according to the specifications, instructions and design God had given him. THIS WAS THE FIRST BOAT EVER TO BE BUILT.
After the ark was finally completed and 120 years of preaching ended, God instructed Noah to take in to the ark with him and his family seven of every clean animal according to their kind and in pairs of their sexual compatibility, so that no species or kind may be lost and two of every unclean animal, likewise, according to their kind and in pairs. Noah did everything just as God had commanded him to. Finally the time had come for Noah and his family to also enter the ark after they had led all the animals into it as God had instructed them to. Noah was 600 years old at the time. His father had died meantime, when Noah was 595 years old.
Thus after all seven and two pairs of all living creatures, clean and unclean respectively, whether animals, birds or creatures that crawl along the ground, had entered the ark, and Noah and his wife along with his three sons, Shem, Ham and Japheth with their wives had also entered in, God shut the door of the ark after them. Then the floodwaters came on the earth. All the springs of the great deep were opened and likewise even the floodgates of the heavens. Rain fell on the earth just as it was prophesied it would continuously for forty days and forty nights, until it had submerged everything on it, every hills and every high mountains. So that none who was outside the ark could escape. Everything on the earth was destroyed. Even after forty days, when the rains had stopped, the waters continued to flood the earth for 150 days, after which it began to recede slowly. Only the ark stayed afloat, and all in it escaped unhurt.
THE SURPASSING LOVE, THE INIMITABLE FAITHFULNESS AND SUPREME JUSTICE OF GOD:
So, while on one hand, mankind finally did get a taste of the Judgment they were scoffing at all along, on the other hand, God in His surpassing Mercy and Love, ensured that neither they nor any of His creations would utterly perish. And before long, once again, all creatures flourished and increased on earth. Including mankind of course!
There were also few notable changes seen throughout the creations:
1. Since the floodgates of heaven had opened to send down the rains, the waters that was initially separated at the beginning on the second day of creation of the world, had been poured down from the heavens. This made way for God’s provision as mighty rivers to course through the earth and bring it healing and revival after the life-threatening repercussions brought to it by the flood.
2. For instance, the new provision of mighty rivers more than compensated for the shortage of water that would have otherwise ensued. Because the fact is, since the cool canopy that these waters had provided until then, against the intense heat of the sun, was no longer there, the springs that had watered the earth until then would not survive the intense heat it will be exposed to most of the seasons.
3. The land that was ONE had since the great flood undergone irrevocable seismic changes and consequently broken away into many major and minor parts, now known as continents and islands respectively. However, the separation would not remain unconquerable as the making of the ark of God would inspire men in time to navigate their way through the divisions to lay hold of their own territories and establish their own little kingdoms everywhere they go. Thus the Japhethites, descendants of Noah’s son Japheth, came to be renowned as the first of maritime peoples.
4. Concentration of all life began to converge along the river banks. Consequently, all mankind and animals began to vie with one another, each for their space and for their share in God’s abundant provisions. This brought about drastic change in food habits as mankind and a lot of animals became carnivorous. Aggression and violence was no longer the exclusive domain of mankind. It had entered the animal world too. And, all creatures began to live in the fear of mankind.
5. Under the more direct and intense impact of the sun, food shortage was going to be inevitable as is already alluded to above. So God permitted man to add to his diet meat and fish from the animal world.
AT THE SAME TIME, GOD ALSO DECREED NO ONE WAS TO TAKE THE LIFE OF MANKIND – NEITHER FELLOWMAN NOR THE CREATURES OF THE ANIMAL WORLD, WHETHER FOR FOOD OR WHATEVER REASON!
God had absolutely forbidden the shedding of lifeblood of mankind! He made it known that disobedience on the part of anyone, whether fellowmen or the creatures of the animal world, would not go unpunished. The perpetrator, whether man or animal or bird or insect or creatures of water or creatures that crawl along the ground, would be held accountable for the lifeblood shed of ‘mankind’.
SO THAT VIOLENCE OF MEN THAT HAD BROUGHT DOWN THE SAMPLING OF GOD’S JUDGMENT UPON THEM ONCE, IF REPEATED, WOULD ONLY ASCERTAIN THEIR ETERNAL AND IRREVOCABLE JUDGMENT.
6. For the first time ever, a ‘RAINBOW’ appeared on the sky, and God included as part of His New Covenant the Promise that henceforth the rainbow will be the sign, a reminder, to all peoples and creatures that never again was God going to destroy all life with the waters.
AT THE SAME TIME, IT WOULD DEFINITELY ALSO CONTINUE TO SERVE AS THE WARNING OF THE ACTUAL JUDGMENT TO COME – WHICH WILL NOT BE BY WATER BUT BY FIRE – ALL THE SAME.
7. Thus, once again, mankind was given a fresh start to seek God, and to seek His eternal Kingdom and His surpassing righteousness so that they may not perish.
THE SHORT-LIVED GLORY OF THE NEW WORLD:
However, no sooner had they stepped out of the ark, they began to digress in to their old wayward ways once again. At first things did look bright and optimistic. After the waters had receded and the land had totally dried up, springing the plant world to thrive once again, God told Noah to step out of the ark with everyone and everything in it.
And as soon as Noah had stepped out of the ark, he built an altar to the Lord and offered some of the clean animals and birds. God looked upon him with favor, and declared that as long as earth endured, He will not destroy all living creatures again. Because Noah, like Abel, had adhered to the Truth by the offering of that which was deemed clean and thus glorified Him with the divine knowledge, or the Truth, that NOTHING UNCLEAN CAN ENTER HIS PRESENCE. Thus, Noah presented a perfect example of the Truth to fellow-men and creatures alike so that they may be warned forthwith.
SPIRITUALLY SPEAKING, IT WAS VERY SYMBOLIC TOO FOR NOW WE HAVE THE ADDED KNOWLEDGE ABOUT THE ONLY HOLY AND WHOLLY ACCEPTABLE SACRIFICE THAT IS TO TAKE PLACE AT THE FIRST COMING OF THE MESSIAH:
First, that which was revealed through Abel’s sacrifice – the Perfect Sacrifice will be the Firstborn and the Firstfruit over all creations and over all regeneration, respectively.
Second, that which was revealed through Noah’s sacrifice – the Perfect Sacrifice will be of the One Who Alone is Perfect, Holy and Clean – absolutely without any sin, stain or blemish.
But, before long, as the few people that were there got busy with the business of living, Noah himself took a heavy stumble. He, like Cain, was a man of soil and had planted a vineyard. One day, having drunk himself to a stupor he lay exposed in his tent. Truth to speak, it alludes to his Spiritual nakedness more than the physical nakedness that was instantly visible. Ham, his second son mocked his father in his heart and sought his brothers to share in his evil derision. But his brothers Shem and Japheth took a garment and walking backwards covered Noah with it, turning their faces away so that they may not see their father’s nakedness and not disgrace him as Ham had.
When Noah found out what had happened, he cursed his son Ham and the Canaanite tribes he would sire to be the least among his brothers, enslaved to them for as long as they lived on earth. He also, in turn, blessed Shem and Japheth above their Canaanite siblings.
Yet, as time progressed and mankind increased, each of his sons pursued the evil inclinations of their hearts. So that, while yet in his lifetime, Noah saw them scattered throughout the earth as sin continued to multiply in every household, every clan, every tribe.
Peleg, a descendant of Shem went down in history as the one in whose time mankind was completely divided and scattered throughout the earth, thus receiving the name Peleg to denote the division that had taken place in his time. Not just in terms of the geographical division that had already taken place due to the flood, but divisions in every manner, beginning with linguistic division of which we shall soon learn in detail.
And, once again, like in the past, men began to rely on their physical prowess, and new-age ‘Nephilims’ soon came into existence. They were hunters and mighty warriors, one of the most renowned among them being Nimrod who built the cities of Babylon and Assyria, to name a few. These belonged to the clan of Ham initially, but were soon found to be widespread throughout wherever mankind spread out.
THUS, ONCE AGAIN, GOD REVEALED TO MANKIND HOW IT HAD BECOME IMPOSSIBLE FOR THEM TO OVERCOME THEIR CURSED EXISTENCE ON THEIR OWN AND HOW IT WAS FUTILE TO DEPEND ON SONS OF MEN TO BRING THE BLESSEDNESS ABOUT WHEN THEY THEMSELVES WERE SUBJECTED TO THEIR CURSES, REINSTATING THE TRUTH THAT THE OLD COVENANT WITH THE MALE OF MAN HAD INDEED CEASED TO EXIST.
THE BIRTH OF THE NEWFOUND EVIL CALLED RELIGION:
By now mankind had so advanced in every manner that they began to totally rely on their own abilities and achievements. This was the time before the divisions that came about between them. The time when all of them spoke the one and the same language. They decided the only thing they seem to lack was the access into Heaven.
So they conspired to build a tower that would enable them to reach the Heaven and make a name for themselves and seek their ultimate glory, hoping that it would give them a united front against God. Just like Lucifer had attempted while he lived in the heavens above.
But while the tower was still under construction, God brought their evil rebellion to an abrupt end. He sent for the evil spirit called the ‘spirit of confusion’ which threw the whole project into a chaotic confusion as each struggled to understand the other for suddenly each one was speaking differently from the other. From there, the Lord scattered them over the face of the whole earth.
Since then, the tower is infamous as the ‘tower of Babel’. Because ‘Babel’ means confusion. Also, since then, Babel which gave birth to the word Babylon, began to denote ‘RELIGION’ or man’s rebellion by which he attempts to enter Heaven in his own merit and for his own glory. Thus the first of all religions was born and symbolically brought to an abrupt end.
And since man’s rebellion showed forth in every manner as they refused to heed God’s Words and Warnings, the ‘Era of Symbolism’ had begun to add to their jaded confusion in order that their deceptions would give way to delusions until they are fully exposed in their sins to perish in it.
FOR GOD HAS DECREED HE WILL EXPOSE EACH AND EVERY RELIGION JUST AS HE HAD ‘PROJECT BABEL’ AS NOTHING BUT VAIN AND REBELLIOUS ATTEMPTS OF VAINGLORIOUS MEN.
Time moved forward, taking along with it the continually degenerating mankind, in particular, as we know ‘time’ was EXCLUSIVELY created for them. FOR AS WE LEARNED EARLIER, SEVENTY ‘SEVENS’ IS THE ENTIRE LENGTH OF TIME THAT IS GOD-ORDAINED TO MANKIND TO FINISH TRANSGRESSION, TO PUT AN END TO SIN, TO ATONE FOR WICKEDNESS, TO BRING IN EVERLASTING RIGHTEOUSNESS, TO SEAL UP VISION AND PROPHECY AND TO ANOINT THE MOST HOLY.
So, as mankind increased on earth, sin increased too. So that they continued to aggravate their harsh living conditions all the more by inviting more and more curses upon themselves. Just like we saw, in the cases of Cain and Ham.
HOWEVER, GOD TOOK PITY ON THEM AND, AS A RESPITE TO THEM, BEGAN TO SHORTEN THEIR SPAN OF LIFE ON THE EARTH IN ORDER THAT THEIR SUFFERING MAY ALSO BE SHORTENED BY IT.
Thus, with the span of life shortened, Noah becomes the last of men to live long like those who lived before the flood. For Noah died at the ripe old age of 950 years. But as his descendants increased, by the 8th generation, the life span of man had fallen to a mere 148 years. This was the age of Nahor who became the father of Terah, a descendant of Shem, who will next be instrumental in taking this narration forward.
THE CALLING OF MEN CONTINUES:
Now, in the self-effusing dominion of man and the fact that the Old Covenant had ceased to exist, it had become increasingly difficult for the woman to rise up to her Spiritual potential and heed her divine Calling. As time moved on she was so terribly subjugated to man that every semblance of godliness was robbed off her. She became weighed down and oppressed in every manner as her very existence revolved round the man – serving him, rearing his numerous children and looking after his affairs. His evil dominion (yes, evil, because obviously it is against the Sovereign will of God) ensured that she was taught to look upon her oppression as the very means to her evasive virtue in his world!
As for himself, he distanced himself completely from God. In other words, it became obvious that unless God brought His infallible plan to fruition, all mankind would most definitely perish. But, praise God, for it was not to be!! Therefore, God began to call man. Just as we saw happen when he called Noah.
Now, lest we misunderstand the calling of man as God’s retraction on His Word and man in turn are justified to continue in his feigned superiority, let us understand the purposes ‘his calling’ was meant to fulfill:
1. Most importantly, to remind mankind that God had not forgotten them even though they had. And that, God is Faithful and True, even though they aren’t.
2. To prove how man is totally disinclined to seek or follow God unless he is personally called of God.
3. To expose man’s undying unfaithfulness, which will show forth in every single one of the ‘called’, in some manner or another, and thus proving to all mankind that indeed the Old Covenant with him ceases to exist.
4. To rekindle the dying embers of the woman’s chosenness, so that she may not lose hope and turn to Him and thereby save herself and her household. For, she is as naturally disposed or Spiritually blessed to seek and follow God, unlike the man, her counterpart. Her Spiritual revival through the calling of man is meant to ensure that.
Thus, surmising on the first calling of Noah, we see the fulfillment of all above. Most particularly, we learn that EVEN THOUGH THE MALE HAD SEPARATED THE FEMALE IN EVERY MANNER FROM HER GOD-ORDAINED NAME, DOMINION AND DIVINE CALLING, GOD HAD NOT.
YES, THE SEED OF ‘DIVORCE’ OR ‘ESTRANGEMENT’, BOTH IN ITS SPIRITUAL CONTEXT AND ALSO IN ITS PHYSICAL CONTEXT, IS ALSO THE SEED OF LIE PLANTED BY MAN.
GOD HAD THUS THROUGH HIS CALLING OF NOAH TAUGHT US THAT HE CONTINUES TO SEE MANKIND IN THE ONENESS HE HAD CREATED THEM. THE REASON WHY, THE TWO, IN THEIR CREATION, WERE SHOWN TO BELONG IN THE SAME BODY. ALSO THE REASON WHY NOAH’S CALLING INCLUDED HIS WIFE, AND INCLUDED HIS SONS AND THEIR WIVES. FOR THE DIVINE LAW OF GOD HAS ALWAYS BEEN “WHAT GOD HAD JOINED TOGETHER LET NO MAN PUT ASUNDER”.
THE SECOND CALL – THE CALL OF TERAH:
By the time Terah was born, all people were found so steeped in sin, they were generally found to be completely oblivious of God and His holiness that was revealed since the beginning. Terah had three sons whom he named Abram, Nahor and Haran. They were born and raised in Ur in Chaldeans, the Babylonian region. All three got married. While Abram had no child with his wife Sarai, Haran, who had a son named Lot, died.
This was the time Terah received God’s calling to leave Babylon and go to Canaan. It means God’s calling of mankind was symbolic right from the beginning so that all men may understand the Spiritual implications thereof. Terah decided to heed God’s Calling and leave Chaldeans. Since Nahor did not join him, he set off for Canaan – the land God had promised to give him – with his sons Abram, his daughter-in-Law Sarai and his grandson Lot whom he had entrusted to Abram’s care after Haran’s death.
However after having reached about half way, he decided to settle down in a good pastureland he had found, and he named it ‘Haran’ in memory of his dead son. And there he lived until he died at the age of 205 years.
And, THAT WAS IT, THE END OF HIS STORY AND HIS CALLING! Not surprising, considering how ‘Haran’ manifested itself as the ‘object’ of his reverence and not God! Unwavering, just as it was before he received his call when he had named his son Nahor after his father and now, after having received his call and heeded it, naming the land he decided to take possession of against God’s wish and naming it Haran, after his deceased son.
THE THIRD CALL – THE CALL OF ABRAHAM:
IT IS ALSO KNOWN AS THE LIFE-TRANSFORMING CALL OF ALL MANKIND!
God’s call then came to Abram, his son. And so that Abram and Sarai may turn fully to God, He made her infertile. THUS SARAI BECAME THE FIRST WOMAN IN THE HISTORY OF MANKIND TO BECOME BARREN.
And this was so that she may SERVE AS A SYMBOL FOR THE TRUE NATURE OF GODLY OFFSPRING OR THE TRUE CHILDREN OF GOD FROM AMONG MANKIND – IN ORDER THAT MANKIND MAY UNDERSTAND, TRUE CHILDREN OF GOD ARE CHILDREN BORN NOT OF NATURAL DESCENT, NOR OF HUMAN DECISION OR A HUSBAND’S WILL, BUT BORN OF GOD.
AND, OF COURSE, SO THAT MANKIND MAY BEGIN TO SEE THAT THE WILL OF GOD WILL BE ACCOMPLISHED ONLY THROUGH THE OFFSPRING OF THE WOMAN FOR TRULY IN THE MAN’S CALLING IS THE REVIVAL OF THE WOMAN’S TRUE, DIVINE AND ETERNAL CALLING.
Thus, it came to transpire that after Terah’s death, God spoke to Abram and told him to forsake all ties with his past, putting his complete trust in the Lord to follow Him and to take possession of that which is of eternal worth. God also said, as a sign of His favor for his obedience, he will be blessed in every manner causing his name to be renowned on the earth. The Lord then went on to list his material blessings which will show forth in the making of a great nation through him which in turn will prove to be a great blessing to all nations. ALL THIS IN SPITE OF THE FACT THAT SARAI, HIS WIFE, WAS BARREN!
It goes to show how the Calling of God involves putting one’s complete trust in the Lord. What is more? Every calling will be a sign, a sifting of the peoples for they that are able to perceive the divine Calling for what it is, become equally blessed by it, and they that reject it outright become irrevocably cursed by it.
THUS THE CALLED BECOME THE SIGNS OR SYMBOLS OF THE LORD WHO IS THE CORNERSTONE OF HIS KINGDOM – OF WHOM IT IS ALSO PROPHESIED, “THE STONE THE BUILDERS REJECTED HAS BECOME THE CAPSTONE. EVERYONE WHO FALLS ON THAT STONE WILL BE BROKEN TO PIECES, BUT HE ON WHOM IT FALLS WILL BE CRUSHED.”
So, Abram left, as the Lord had told him. He was seventy five years old when he set out from Haran. He took his wife Sarai, his nephew Lot, all the possession they had accumulated and the people they had acquired in Haran, and together they set out for the land of Canaan, and they arrived there. Upon reaching Canaan, God’s Word came to him once again reassuring him that this indeed was the land he was going to give his offspring. Abram built an altar each to the Lord at the east and west ends of the land, earmarked for him and his descendants by the direct interventions of the Lord.
IT IS NOTABLE HERE THAT ABRAM’S WAS A SPIRITUAL JOURNEY OF COMPLETE TRUST IN THE LORD. THE FACT THAT HE JUST BUILT TWO ALTARS TO THE LORD WITHOUT ANY KIND OF OFFERING MADE UPON IT GOES TO SHOW HOW DEVOID OF ANY KNOWLEDGE OF GOD HE TRULY WAS AT THE TIME. AND YET IT WAS REMARKABLE AND A TESTAMENT TO HIS NEWLY AND SPEEDILY ACQUIRING RIGHTEOUSNESS THAT HE HAD INDEED BROKEN ALL TIES WITH HIS PAST FOR HE DID NOT DEFILE THE ALTAR BY THE CORRUPT PRACTICES HE WAS ACCUSTOMED TO IN THE PAST.
Abram was then led by God to move on to mark the north and south ends of the land. This journey became the turning point in his personal life as it began to expose his inherent personal struggles. And as each of his struggles came upfront, they became sources for invaluable lessons from God so that they became instrumental in teaching him the true knowledge and will of God.
WHILE AT IT, IT ALSO BECOMES APPARENT THAT HIS GREATEST STRUGGLE WAS IN ACKNOWLEDGING THE INCLUSION OF SARAI IN HIS CALLING – SOMETHING HE STRUGGLED WITH ALL HIS LIFE. SO MUCH SO THAT IT WILL BECOME A FOLLY HE WOULD END UP LEAVING BEHIND AS HIS CARNAL ‘LEGACY’, CONTINUALLY CONFLICTING WITH THE SPIRITUAL ‘LEGACY’ HE HAD INHERITED FROM THE LORD, TO THE NATION OR NATIONS (AGAINST THE WILL OF GOD) HE (AND SOON HIS DESCENDANTS) WOULD SIRE.
THE CONFLICT OF FLESH AGAINST THE SPIRIT:
The reason behind wording this subtitle in this fashion is because Abram’s struggles are symbolic of the struggles every man faces in his Spiritual life. They are not unique to him. They are common to one and all, no matter which part of the world one is from. Therefore a detailed understanding of the same is of utmost importance so that we may learn from his mistakes. They are mistakes that have lifelong repercussions on his people, and it will do well to be forewarned:
1. HE FAILED TO INCLUDE SARAI, HIS WIFE, IN HIS CALLING:
His greatest mistake was in failing to grasp the Perfect Oneness of God. Right from the beginning, we know, God had revealed His Perfect Oneness, by the Oneness of His Triune identity.
And, we know, God had once again established it by creating mankind – when He created them ONE OUT OF THE OTHER. So that they came to be two identities and yet one; One the divine Model in which they were created and One the common name given to them. There could be no better way to lay down the divine law of Oneness that God advocates. And, He decreed, “What God has joined together, let man not put asunder.”
And, yet, after the first male had violated His holy law and had rend the two asunder in every manner, starting with the name, God re-established and reiterated His holy law by the calling and setting apart of Noah as His chosen servant. His instruction was loud and clear. For, it CLEARLY included Noah’s wife, his sons and their wives too.
Soon, we will also learn, as the wealth and number of people increase in a household with the inclusion of servants, even cattle, that every calling of God includes every living being in a household – from the first to the last, the greatest to the least from master to servants, including all cattle, every single being, great and small. For such is the Surpassing and Perfect Oneness or All-inclusiveness of God!
In Abram’s case, the Word of God therefore testifies how when he was called he was but one and yet he had become many, for such was the transition that had taken place in his life from the time he had set forth with his small entourage as ‘a great nation’ to the time when he had come to acquire the ambiguous title as ‘the father of many nations’. That’s right, even though he was called to be a great nation, which definitely means single nation, he becomes diverse resulting in many nations who are continually at loggerheads with one another.
This is because Abram failed to see it the Lord’s way. It showed forth right from the beginning of his calling. So that, even though he had taken his wife along with him, he neither shared the Word of God that he had received with her nor had he even come close to considering her as a fair share-holder in it.
Eventually, of course, he does learn the Truth, but the hard way. Because, it only comes about through very many patient tutoring and disciplining by God. They are:
A. The bartering away of Sarai:
To begin with, there followed a famine, and he and his entourage were forced to change course just as they were beginning to map out the north-south ends of the Promised Land. They go to Egypt to escape the famine. But as soon as he had entered Egypt, he began to fear for his life since Sarai was a very beautiful woman. So he told her to tell everyone that she was his sister.
Obviously, he didn’t care about her safety or the danger he was inviting upon her. All that mattered to him was his own personal safety. Word spread, and soon the news of this beautiful sister of a new arrival reached Pharaoh’s ears. Sarah was promptly brought to Pharaoh’s court, and in exchange, Abraham received a lot of gifts by way of sheep, donkeys, cattle, camels and servants.
However, God’s anger turned against Pharaoh, and if it wasn’t for Him, Sarai would have ended up as one of Pharaoh’s many wives. God inflicted serious diseases on Pharaoh and his household on account of her. Pharaoh then realized his folly and returned Sarai to Abram and sent them on their way with all the gifts he had bartered in exchange for her earlier. Now, clearly, Pharaoh had learned his lesson, so much so that forget Sarai, he would dare not even touch the wealth he had bartered off in exchange for her. But, could the same be said of Abram? Sadly, not!!
B. Misplaced allegiance:
Makes one wonder why Abram would do such a thing to Sarai? Why did he not trust in the Lord and seek His counsel and His help? Why would he go to Egypt in the first place, unless it was to be tested by God? Why did he fail to exercise his faith on behalf of Sarai?
Even if we were to consider for a minute that he was perhaps too afraid, a man of feeble heart, wanting in courage and valor, he proved all such notions as absolutely baseless. For, right away, he got the opportunity to prove that it wasn’t the case. How? By the prompt and military operation he executes to rescue his nephew Lot:
As it happened, his nephew Lot had separated from him on account of a rich pastureland which he had begun to covet for himself and his increasing flock in the fertile regions of Sodom and Gomorrah. Clearly, Lot did not wish to stake his share in Abraham’s Calling. After having just escaped the severity of a famine, his thoughts had turned worldly, and he had already begun contemplating settling in a rich pastureland they had come by which was enriched by the abundant waters of river Jordan.
Abram, on his part, remained true to his calling and let Lot have his chosen land and continued in his journey without him. Which was of course the right thing to do. Abram had thus begun to practice the divine law of alienation, for surely he could not take Lot along against his wishes. AN APT LESSON FOR ONE AND ALL TO LEARN FROM!
This was a great Spiritual triumph in Abram’s life. And surely enough God blesses him even more. He extends his horizons to as far as his eyes could see and as far as his feet could take him in the entire span of his long life thenceforth. And He adds to his descendants a number that would be uncountable like the dust of the earth. Symbolically, Abram then moves to Hebron, and there he builds another altar to the Lord, which remained bereft of any offering as usual.
It was at about this time he learns of a calamity that had befallen Lot. Immediately, he marshaled his troop of 318 men against the allied forces of four kings who had in pursuit of conquest overpowered a company of five kings and their forces which included the king of Sodom and Gomorrah, the land where Lot had taken his new residence.
Abram did this because he heard how the four kings had ended up carrying away Lot among their captives. Thus, for the sake of his nephew, who had in fact deserted him and his calling, Abram and his men overpowered the forces of the four kings and rescued every king, every man and recovered every bit of wealth and cattle they had taken with them and returned them to their rightful owners.
So much for his supposed cowardice!! For, isn’t it strange that yet he hadn’t considered it worthwhile to do the same on behalf of Sarai who had remained faithful to him all along, even going as far as to lie for his sake!!!
Indeed, this is the seed of disparity or otherwise known as the seed of patriarchy that was sown by Abram. It is the seed of lie, which will Spiritually blind his people as they, like him, will continue to glory in flesh, in their male gender, in particular, and end up bringing lasting disrepute to their calling as God’s once chosen nation!! So that, in the end, only a remnant will be joined to the eternal kingdom of God from among them even though just as it was promised, they will number as the dust of the earth.
MORE IMPORTANTLY, WHAT WE OUGHT TO ALSO UNDERSTAND IS HOW HIS ACTIONS IN EGYPT HAD TAKEN ITS TOLL ON HIS FUTURE GENERATIONS AS HE WAS ALSO REVEALED THE PROPHECY THAT CONSEQUENTLY HIS DESCENDANTS WILL BE SUBJECTED TO 400 YEARS OF SLAVERY IN EGYPT. Both, to teach them to wholly trust in the Lord at all times and to teach them to become a truly Spiritual nation, instead of a nation of the flesh like the rest of the nations of the world were.
And yet, did he understand? Indeed not! And he, like every man before and after him, blundered along, multiplying their curses and adding to the general misery of all mankind.
However, in Abram’s case, IN ADDITION, there were also the symbolic blessings, both in material and Spiritual terms, for every act of obedience on his part. Hadn’t it been the case, the nation of Israel would not even exist today. Like many other nations and greater civilizations of the time, it would have also become completely extinct.
C. God’s first Covenant with Abram, the eternal Covenant of God as his Shield and his Reward:
By now Abram was also beginning to show his frustration as he was evidently advancing in age, and still as far as he was concerned there was no sign of the descendant promised by God. So the Word of God came to him again as he was returning from the victorious battle he fought with his men on behalf of Lot, his estranged nephew. Because, clearly, he was increasingly becoming a man of the world and literally compromising his Spiritual calling. Therefore, it was time God set him back on track.
The Word of God this time first came to him through king Melchizedek of Salem, who was also a priest of God Most High. As His priest, Melchizedek brings to Abram the offering of “bread and wine” for him to partake of. It was the first revelation of the Holy Sacrifice to be that Abram receives. Why first? Because he would fail to truly comprehend it the first time, and so God would patiently reveal it to him once again and this time even more demonstratively so that there was no room for any doubt.
Thus, as we can see from the offering of Melchizedek, Abram receives the revelation of God’s plan of redemption for mankind for the first time, which he vaguely registers will be accomplished through the Sacrificial death of the Messiah, who will come in to the world as the Son of God.
HAVING MADE THAT KNOWN, GOD ENTERS INTO A COVENANT WITH ABRAM PROCLAIMING HIMSELF HIS GREAT REWARD AND HIS ETERNAL SHIELD.
This was so because God wanted Abram to learn it was not through valor or might as he had gone about on behalf of Lot, but through the Power of God that His people will be redeemed. IT CLEARLY MEANT A TRUE SERVANT OF GOD WILL AT ALL TIMES STAY COMPLETELY DEPENDENT ON GOD, AND FOR EVERYTHING. Also that, he may learn, the perfect and pleasing offering which is wholly acceptable to God is by the offering of “bread and wine” which proclaims the Holy Sacrifice of the Messiah for the redemption of mankind. THUS, AS OF THEN, THE ALTARS ABRAM WOULD BUILD FOR GOD NEED NOT BE BEREFT BUT COULD BEGIN TO SYMBOLIZE THE PERFECT SACRIFICE. (However, sadly, it was not to be!)
Now all this proved too much for Abram to take in, remorse-stricken as he was thinking all his vast wealth, his great herds of cattle, his acquisition of a large sum of gold and silver and his increasing number of servants will all be inherited by Eliezer, the chief of his servants, since he remained childless. So, he promptly mouths his concern to God. ONCE AGAIN, GOD REITERATES HIS OLD PROMISE, THE PROMISE OF A SON who will inherit his great legacy of wealth – both the material as well as the Spiritual. He also reiterates that He would indeed give the Promised Land, which Abram had mapped, to his descendants after they are freed from their captivity four generations hence.
On receiving the Word, Abram was greatly satisfied, for he believed God and His promises, and this is forever credited to him as righteousness. Yet, as we have been detailing, for all his tremendous faith, he continued to struggle along as he failed to comprehend all the greater and truly Spiritual implications that his great calling entailed!
D. His divisiveness exposed by the lasting enmity between his own flesh:
However, his folly was once again exposed right away when Sarai offered her maid Hagar to him hoping to build a family for herself through her. Exactly, in the same fashion Eve had offered the fruit to Adam. For, by being kept in the dark about the True Word of God concerning them, it was but inevitable that women should also continue to blunder along. But would that showcase men as any the wiser? Indeed not!
For, just like Adam before him, Abram too listens to the ignorant counsel of his wife and begets a son through Hagar, her maid. Directly in contravention to God’s Word that had come to him concerning his descendants! And, thus he invited endless strife for his son of God’s promise which will continue ceaselessly down to the very last generation of his descendants. Because, this son he sired outside of God’s will, just as it was prophesied of him, will become a ‘wild donkey of a man’, who will contend with all his brethren till the very end of time. FROM THEN ON HE CAME TO BE KNOWN NO LONGER AS A GREAT NATION HE WAS CALLED TO BECOME BUT AS A ‘FATHER OF MANY NATIONS’. FROM THEN ON, GOD CHANGED HIS NAME TO ABRAHAM WHICH MEANS FATHER OF MANY NATIONS. Yes, he had become from one to too many, far too many for him to contend with!
E. His second covenant – the eternal covenant of circumcision:
This is when God introduces the Covenant of circumcision to Abraham. So that he and, through him, all men may understand and learn “Faithfulness”. For it is clear from the start, God is Holy, and He desires that all men may learn to be holy as well. Everyone, from the greatest to the least. And, since it is an eternal covenant, a sign between God and His people, He decrees all uncircumcised men were to be forever cut off as they will not be numbered with His people.
And this time again, for we find that mankind finds it easier to obey that which is applicable outwardly, rather than what needs to be applicable inwardly, Abraham proves himself prompt in obedience. After having obeyed God and circumcising himself and all male members in his household, including his servants and the new born son when he had become eight days of age, he once again receives THE WORD OF GOD, AND THIS TIME, SPECIFICALLY, IT WAS THE PROPHECY CONCERNING SARAI, HIS WIFE, which we shall go into under the next sub-heading.
Before that, let us understand how even though Abraham was prompt in obeying the covenant outwardly, he fails to obey it fully which can only be possible by the Spiritual circumcision of his heart. So that, he remained unfaithful to the covenant in the true sense of the word. Directly in contravention to it, his unfaithfulness continued to surface as he went on to acquire more wives and even more concubines for himself. As a result of which, he ends up siring more sons, all of whom, like Ishmael, his son through Hagar the handmaid of Sarai, will continually strive with his son of the “promise” and his descendants until the very end! Yes, far too many for him to contend with!
F. The divinely symbolic parenthood:
All this, in spite of the fact that immediately after receiving and obeying the covenant of circumcision, he receives God’s Word concerning Sarai! For by it, he had learned that it was through Sarai he was to be blessed, that it was she who will bear him the promised son, and that God will bless her so that SHE WILL BE CALLED THE MOTHER OF NATIONS.
Let us not mistake this title for anything but the blessing that it truly is. Because, even though she will bear a single child (very unlike Abraham who will sire many sons), she is to be blessed as the mother of many nations. This is not to be misconstrued as symbolic of the division or scattering that had become exposed through Abraham’s title of similar nature, BUT THE GATHERING OF OR THE CONVERGING AND UNION OF MANY NATIONS AS THE ONE NATION OF GOD. It is the Spiritual allusion to all the peoples and nations of the world who will belong to her as the Spiritually symbolic ‘Daughter of Zion’ that her calling represents. And thus, through her, indirectly the blessedness of Abraham is also retained.
Thus God reinstates His Perfect Oneness as through them He also introduced the ‘Spiritual’ concept of divine parentage as a sign of the fulfillment of His divine purpose in raising ‘Godly’ or ‘Spiritual’ offspring.
This is, once again, and to be sure, the Spiritual allusion to the Spiritual nation God will raise for Himself, not by the flesh, but by His infallible Promise, His irrefutable Word. FOR JUST AS BOTH OF THEM WILL PARTAKE OF IT THANKS TO HIS WORD THAT HAD COME TO THEM, THEY WILL TOGETHER SYMBOLICALLY BECOME THE PARENTS AND A SIGN FOR ALL WHO WILL LIKEWISE BE RAISED BY HIS WORD.
G. It is God Who calls His own, and He will Himself name them:
What is more? GOD THEN CHANGES THE ORIGINAL NAME OF SARAI TO CALL HER HENCEFORWARD AS SARAH WHICH MEANS PRINCESS.
THUS REASSERTING HIS SURPASSING WISDOM BY WHICH HE WILL LIKEWISE RENAME ALL HIS OWN – something that man had usurped right at the beginning. SO THAT THE VERY NAMES THAT GOD WILL RENAME THEM WITH WILL PROCLAIM THEIR BLESSEDNESS IN THE LORD.
And thus Abraham and Sarah came to be known as the ‘father of many nations’ and ‘princess’ respectively by the great blessing of God upon them. SARAH’S NAME IN PARTICULAR IS THE FORETELLING OF THE FORMER DOMINION THAT WILL BE RESTORED TO ALL GOD’S CHILDREN, PARTICULARLY THE WOMEN, WHICH WILL BE FULFILLED THROUGH THE BLESSED EXALTING OF THE DAUGHTER OF ZION AS HIS PRINCESS.
2. LIKE EVERY MAN BEFORE AND AFTER HIM, HE TOO GLORIED IN HIS OWN FLESH:
This is the second of the two factors that contributed to Abraham’s lengthy and long-lasting series of blunders. No man is, truly speaking, worthy of God’s calling. Yet God calls so that His Divine Purpose may be fulfilled. In other words, it is important we understand it is not because we are worthy BUT THAT WE MAY BE MADE WORTHY. Right from the beginning this was the case. Even before the fall of mankind. MANKIND NEEDS TO UNDERSTAND THEY NEED TO BE MADE WORTHY.
The divine call sums it up best in these words which came to Abraham, “I am God Almighty; walk before Me and be blameless.” And again, “For I have chosen him, so that he will direct his household after him to keep the Way of the Lord by doing what is right and just, so that the Lord will bring about for Abraham what he has promised him.”
Failing to understand this is the reason why everybody, without exception, is forced to learn from their mistakes rather than by perfect obedience in everything and at all times. The difference is, even though some do learn from their mistakes, like Abraham did, these mistakes mostly end up bearing serious repercussions, particularly on the future generations. Just as we have been discovering was the case with Abraham. ON THE OTHER HAND, BY OBEYING GOD ABSOLUTELY AND IMPLICITLY, ONE LEARNS THE SURPASSING WAYS OF GOD WITHOUT HAVING TO LEAVE A TRAIL OF DESTRUCTION BEHIND.
More on the trail of destruction Abraham left behind:
A. The weed of patriarchy:
Because he refused to consider Sarah an equal partaker in the divine calling, he continued to exclude her from the Word of God he would receive. Even after God had particularly revealed to him that it was through Sarah he’d receive his promised son. He merely laughed it off! So that, even as he was all the more exposed in his folly, the next time, God’s Word came to Sarah directly. Thus Sarah had at last come to learn of her blessedness, her calling and the fact that in a year’s time she would bear a son at the ripe old age of ninety years.
Sarah’s life was completely transformed from then on, and she had come to be taught by God Himself, starting with the greatest lesson of them all, “Nothing is impossible with God.”
Symbolically, she became the Spiritual mother of Israel, the true children of God, by bearing the only child, Isaac, her son of the promise, who symbolized them. She had turned to God fully, for she had at last come to realize the Lord is her King and her Lord, her True Husband, Protector, Provider and High Priest. WHAT A GREAT RE-AWAKENING FOR WOMEN TO BEGIN WITH!
Unfortunately, in spite of all this, what got passed on as the terrestrial Israel’s legacy was the self-promoting glorying in the flesh that was evident in Abraham. And all Israel, to this day, lord it over their women and blaspheme God by bringing disrepute to God’s work revealed through them. Even after a millennium or so later when His Word comes, reminding through His prophet Isaiah, to look to Sarah along with Abraham as their parent! What is more? Christians, on their part, force women back to their cursed existence to remain under the dominion and subservience of their male counterparts so that they may look to them as their lords, kings, husbands, protectors, providers and priests, citing the lie of patriarchy introduced by the Israelites.
B. Failing to discern between the Spiritual meaning of the slave-woman and the free-woman:
Though Abraham clearly received the prophecy concerning his wild donkey of a son, Ishamael, and both he and his wife Sarah began to see it come to fulfillment especially after Isaac was born, he refused to heed the Spiritual implications thereof. He ignored the mocking and the taunting of Hagar and Ishmael that Sarah and Isaac were constantly being subjected to.
As for Hagar, the slave-woman, she is symbolic of all women who remain subjected to their flesh, who refused to heed God’s Word. Even though God had on more than one occasion intervened on her behalf and provided for her, promising to bless her descendants, she refused to obey Him when He instructed her to submit to Sarah, her mistress.
Finally, it was Sarah who took matters into her hands and ordered Abraham to send the slave-woman and her son away. ABRAHAM WAS GREATLY DISTRESSED ON BEHALF OF THEM AND SOUGHT THE COUNSEL OF GOD, WHO IN TURN COMMANDED HIM TO LISTEN TO SARAH AND DO WHATEVER SHE TELLS HIM TO DO.
Thus, Hagar and Ishmael were sent away. God blessed them nevertheless and made them into a great nation, because of Abraham’s obedience. As for Hagar and her son, though they partook of all the promised blessings and enjoyed God’s unrestrained provisions, they returned to their roots in the flesh. They lived their life completely bereft of Spiritual insight, in Godlessness and in wickedness. So that, true to the prophecy concerning Ishmael, he did indeed prove himself to be a wild donkey of a man, contending with the son of the promise and his descendants to this day in every manner.
FROM THIS TIME ONWARD THE LINE OF DEMARCATION BETWEEN THE TRULY SPIRITUAL AND THEREFORE THE FREED WOMAN AND THE CARNAL WOMAN WHO REMAINS ENSLAVED TO HER FLESH WAS SET. So that, all mankind may learn and understand the will of God concerning women.
However, as we can see, mankind refuse to heed and women in particular are seldom seen to rise to their freedom in the Lord, to their Spiritual potential and to their calling, enslaved as they remain to the flesh. Even among the so-called ‘children of God’, whether among the Israelites or among the Christians!
C. Abraham’s attitude towards Lot and Sarah remains unchanged:
Once again Abraham had an opportunity to put his true allegiance to test. And this time, let us bear in mind, it was after specifically receiving the prophecy concerning Sarah. God revealed to him that Sodom and Gomorrah had surpassed all scales of wickedness, and that He was going to send fire down from Heaven and destroy them as an example to the nations. So that, once again, seeing that Lot’s life was endangered, he intercedes with God on the latter’s behalf. God, in turn, promises to save Lot and his family on account of him.
So, in spite of the fact that Lot was forewarned to leave the city before Judgment came down upon it, Lot struggled to heed. Noticing that both his sons-in-law to be, who were betrothed to his two daughters refused to join them, his reluctance began to show all the more. Finally, the angel of God, because of His promise to Abraham, had to literally lead them by the hand out of the city, out of harm’s way. Here again, his wife disobeyed God’s instruction and full of remorse for having to leave everything they owned behind, looked back and mourned in her heart. Instantly she was turned into a pillar of salt, for that is what the entire region turned to after the Judgment was past.
As for Lot, he went on to prove how totally lacking in Spiritual insight he remained. For, first he pleaded with the Lord for a resting place in the valley even though he was instructed to flee to the mountains. Again, a very symbolic instruction! For this world in general is symbolic as ‘the valley of death’ where the sanctuary for His people is in His holy Mountain, which is the true Mountain, the true City or Temple of God where Life thrives in abundance and eternally.
Eventually, the fact that not only was Lot lacking in Spiritual insight but that he had failed to lead his household in the Light of God’s Word, his daughters, who remain rooted and enslaved to their flesh, end up siring his sons and raise the cursed races of the Moabites and Ammonites through him. Thus surpassing even the sins of Sodom and Gomorrah!
Likewise, once again Abraham had the opportunity to prove his allegiance to Sarah, his wife of God’s election and blessing. This time again, as he traveled through the region of the Negev and entered the city of Gerar, he asked Sarah to pretend to be his sister. Soon enough, Sarah was taken to Abimelech’s palace, who was the king of Gerar.
Once again, God intervened on Sarah’s behalf, and He did not let Abimelech touch her. Instead, He struck fear in their hearts by rendering all women in the land infertile, from the queens down to the slaves. And it was only after Abimelech had returned Sarah to Abraham and made proper restitution by awarding them with all due rewards of wealth, cattle and servants, and Abraham had in turn prayed on behalf of Abimelech and his people that God forgives them and opens the wombs of the women in the land.
D. Not the son of the mortal man but the Son of God:
Finally, it was time for Abraham to come to true Spiritual insight, so that he may indeed partake of the eternal blessings he and his household were called to partake of. To that end, God puts him to test. Let us recall here how he had failed to understand the Spiritual implications of king Melchizedek’s offering of ‘bread and wine’.
God commands Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac on a mountain which He will show to him in the region of Moriah. Abraham, as usual, was found perfectly compliant in obeying all such instructions as he received that had obvious outwardly and visible manifestations. So, he took Isaac to the mountain God showed him, armed with sufficient wood for the burnt offering, and once there he bound Isaac and laid him on the altar.
But, as he lifted the knife to strike at his son, God called out to him and ordered him not to lay hand on the boy. He commended Abraham for showing true fear of God by willing to obey Him to this extent. And then, just as Abraham had rather unwittingly announced to his son on their way up the mountain when he quizzed him about the sacrificial lamb that God will provide, indeed the two witnessed the marvelous provision of God. For, there in the thicket God directed them to look, and they found the lamb for the offering.
Finally, both Abraham and Isaac understood the Truth, that redemption is possible only by the Lamb God will Himself provide and not by the sons of the mortal man. Since then, the Son of God, the Messiah to come, began to be symbolically referred to as the Lamb of God. So that, when the Messiah did finally come, He Himself testified on behalf of Abraham how he had finally come to prophetically see His Day and rejoice in it.
Yet, sadly, we discover, soon the Truth came to be obliterated from the presence of His people and all Abraham’s descendants instead of partaking of ‘bread and wine’ as the perfect offering, began to partake of the detestable practices of the world by offering their own goats, lambs and bulls, even going as far as engaging in human sacrifices, an abomination most deplorable and despicable!!
THE HISTORY OF MANKIND CONTINUES:
As we move along with the history of mankind, we will notice, this pattern of part adherence and part aversion to the Word of God even by His servants continues unabated. And so, all end up violating His holy laws one way or another! Yet, the fact that some do end up reinstated to the fold of God is not because they were better than the rest but because of the faithfulness of God in accomplishing His Divine Purpose.
It is also a fact that God’s unparalleled blessings do reach every member of His chosen ones’ households so that all alike may know and turn to God. As in this case, we saw it happening to both Lot and Ishmael. And not only to them, but also to those who stayed behind. For instance, to Nahor, Abraham’s brother, who chose to stay behind. We learn that God blessed him and gave him many children through his wife Milcah – 8 sons in all. And this, quite some time after Isaac was miraculously born to Sarah in her fading years. Thus Nahor and Milcah had their taste of God’s miraculous ways. What’s more? Bethuel, their eighth son will go on to become Isaac’s father-in-law and thus end up conjoined to Abraham’s calling, in spite of their father’s reluctance, and find that God had not shut His door on them.
As for Ishmael, he proved to be just as was prophesied of him. His mother left the fold of God and settled in Egypt where she found a wife for him, thus ensuring he’d never look back to his lineage except with hostility and strife.
As for Isaac, he had his share of Spiritual struggles just like his father. And, Rebekah, the daughter of Bethuel, his wife, who like his mother Sarah was a great blessing to him and proved to be a great improvement on womanhood. The Spiritual insight and wisdom she displayed right from the start serves as the greatest proof that God will indeed bring to fulfillment that which He had purposed to by His election of the woman.
As Abraham began to advance in years, and Sarah had died at the age of 127 years, i.e. 37 years after Isaac was born to her, he sent for his chief servant to go to his native place in search of a bride for Isaac from among his people. This was so that Isaac may not be misled into going astray from God because of a foreign wife. Of course, the servant comes across Rebekah right away upon his arrival there, AND THUS GOD’S PURPOSE IN CAUSING ABRAHAM TO SEND HIM THERE INSTANTLY COMES TO LIGHT.
For, clearly, Rebekah was no ordinary woman. She proved herself most favorable as soon as Abraham’s servant had set his eyes on her in an instantaneous answer to his prayer to God for guidance. Both by receiving him and serving him, providing enough water for his camels as well. His joy knew no bounds when she told him she was the daughter of Bethuel, the son of Nahor, who was Abraham’s brother. Immediately, he went about seeking their consent to take her with him to be the bride of Isaac. Even though, as was to be expected, the men-folk showed much reluctance and tried to stall it, Rebekah spoke up for herself and expressed her eagerness to obey her calling right away.
Thus, she ended up leaving with the servant right away, loaded with the richness of her gifts she was presented with by him as a token of all that was assuredly hers for eternal inheritance and blessing. She was then very symbolically met with Isaac mid-way. He then, again very symbolically, brought her into his mother’s tent and was married to her. Since then, Rebekah became the symbol of the Daughter of Zion by her ready eagerness and willing obedience to heed her divine calling. Therefore, it was only right that she should represent the Bride, or the redeemed, the people of God, who will all likewise in the manner of her example heed their divine calling. As symbolized through Rebekah, they shall be caught up to their Lord in mid-air at His Second Coming and be brought into the eternal Kingdom of God to dwell with Him forever.
Why does Isaac’s coming to receive her symbolize the Second Coming of the Lord? Because Isaac’s coming is as the Bridegroom or the Husband. Whereas the servant’s coming symbolizes the First Coming of the Lord. Because, it is as the Chosen and Faithful Servant of God Most High, He is to come in His First Coming, laden with Gifts to betroth the chosen Bride.
Rebekah’s superior insight had more opportunity to showcase itself. For, when she became pregnant, she began to be troubled by the uncorroborated evidences she began experiencing. Indeed, she WAS TO BECOME THE FIRST MOTHER EVER TO GIVE BIRTH TO TWINS. When Isaac failed to put her confusions to rest, she BECAME THE FIRST WOMAN EVER TO DIRECTLY INQUIRE OF THE LORD.
Of course, she was rewarded with His answer. God revealed to her how she was going to be a mother of twins who will go on to become two nations, with the difference that the older will serve the younger. AND THUS CAME ABOUT GOD’S CONTINUED LESSONS FOR MANKIND TO LOOK TO HIM AS THE FIRSTBORN SO THAT THEY MAY STOP LOOKING TO THE FIRSTBORN OF THEIR FLESH IN VAIN.
Yet, it is a crying shame that Isaac failed to see it that way until it was a bit too late. Not for Isaac though, but for his sons. For, Isaac learns the Truth the hard way and was restored to God in the end. However, Rebekah, never did forget God’s Word, and right from the beginning she noticed Jacob, her younger son was rather the exact opposite of Esau, her elder son. And this is the story, the story of Esau and Jacob, which shall ensue next.
ISAAC AND HIS SONS:
Isaac began well. He remained faithful and obedient to God, heeding His counsel in all matters and obeying them. For instance, the manner in which he took for himself a wife. And, when she failed to conceive, he prayed to God and saw His infallible promise fulfilled yet again in his life. For, Rebekah gave birth to his twin sons when he was sixty years of age. Likewise, though at first during a famine that broke out in his time he had considered moving to Egypt he did not do so for God had counseled him to go to Gerar in Philistia instead. There Isaac met with Abimelech, king of the Philistines in Gerar and stayed in Gerar. For his obedience, Isaac was blessed by God to partake of the same eternal blessings and Covenant He had made with his father Abraham.
However, before long, Isaac began to repeat the same mistakes his father had done. He lied to Abimelech about his wife Rebekah and introduced her as his sister, thus literally putting her in harm’s way. It was only thanks to Abimelech, who unlike Abraham and Isaac, was quicker to learn and feared God to harm Rebekah in any way. And eventually, when he finds out that she was indeed Isaac’s wife and not his sister, he rebukes Isaac and issues a decree forbidding anyone from harming either Isaac or Rebekah in any manner. In fact, Abimelech’s fear of God was such that he warns his people of death penalty should they bring any harm to the two.
After this interlude, Isaac lived fearlessly and flourished in the land. He grew very rich and strong. The philistines became envious of him and began to persecute him. They stopped up his wells forcing him to move farther and farther away. They continued this till he had reached Beersheba and settled there. Thus from the wells named Rehoboth, just outside of Beersheba, to all the wells he dug afterwards, symbolically, peace prevailed and he settled down there with the blessings of God. Clearly, it was time he left Gerar and returned to his promised land, and God had ensured he had even though he in his increasing prosperity had briefly forgotten his Covenant with God. Abimelech then visited him and entered into a peace treaty with him, and both parties promised not to harm the other in any way.
These turns of events in Isaac’s life is typical of the relentless unfaithfulness on the part of all men in general, as opposed to the surpassing Faithfulness of God, which had in Isaac’s case restored him to his promised blessedness with God’s disciplining.
Just as his unfaithfulness showed forth with regard to Rebekah, it showed forth with regard to his firstborn son Esau. Disregarding the prophecy concerning him, he favored him throughout. And for all his lavished and misplaced favoritism, Esau, just as was revealed of him, ends up as a source of grief to both Isaac and Rebekah.
ESAU AND JACOB:
The life of the twins, Esau and Jacob, is symbolic of the two end-time classifications of mankind – viz. the wicked and the righteous. There was clearly nothing particularly and divinely distinctive between the two except for the prophecy which revealed how they will turn out in the end. Indeed, no child born of the cursed seed of man can presume to have anything divine and holy in him by nature. Such a presumption is the first lie that their life-story thwarts right away.
Esau was typically the kind of brawny boy any parent would delight in. He grew to be a game-hunter and a man of the open country. Consequently, Isaac, who had a taste for wild game favored Esau all the more. For Esau, having been birthed first was also the firstborn in his eyes. Rebekah, on the other hand, held on to the prophecy concerning them and favored Jacob.
However, Rebekah’s folly began to show forth when she attempted to bring the prophecies to fulfillment herself instead of waiting on the Lord to do the same. Consequently, Jacob, whose determination was evident right from the time of his birth as he followed Esau out of the womb, literally grabbing him by his heel, became a willing accomplice in her deceitful schemes. The reason why he was named Jacob, meaning a deceiver or a cheat.
So, while the boys were yet rather young, one day Esau walked in famished after a hectic day of game-hunting. He found Jacob cooking some stew and immediately asked for some. Jacob seized the opportunity and asked for his birthright in return. Esau, who was clearly a man of the flesh, living only for the moment, decides to barter away his birthright in exchange for the stew.
Later on, after they had grown older and Isaac was nearing his end, he decides it was time to give Esau his rightful blessings as the firstborn son. So he sends for Esau and tells him to cook for him the kind of wild game he likes. Now Rebekah had overheard the conversation and noticing that Esau had left to hunt, she quickly orders Jacob to bring her two young goats. She then cooks them to Isaac’s taste. Having prepared the meal, she sends for Jacob again and disguising him as Esau with the help of the goatskin for Esau was a very hairy man, prods him to take the meal to the father.
Jacob does as his mother instructs him to. Taking full advantage of Isaac’s poor eyesight, he lies his way through his father’s interrogations for the latter had his misgivings on account of the difference in their voices. Finally, convinced by the touch of his hairy arms, Isaac eats the meal and blesses Jacob with the blessed and eternal inheritance promised to his fathers.
To Esau’s and Isaac’s horror, as they discover the treachery, Esau and the race he would sire, the Edomites, were left with the revelation that theirs would be the life of continual blood and sweat though in the end they would break free from the yoke of servitude to his brother. For Esau had lost both his birthright and his blessings due to Jacob’s deceit. For, so he believed at the time. So he secretly conspired to kill Jacob. He failed to realize that he had absolutely no inclination toward God. He lived as a carnal man, living for the moment, pursuing his carnal appetites at all times. When the time came for him to marry, he disobeyed God and married native women who only led him farther apart from His God and His people.
Once again, Rebekah got wind of Esau’s plan to kill Jacob after their father was dead. So she convinces Isaac to permit Jacob to go to her brother Laban on the pretext that he may find a wife for himself from among their people. Aggrieved as he was by Esau’s wives, Isaac readily agrees with Rebekah’s suggestion and sends Jacob away with his blessings. When Esau comes to learn of it and realizes how his brother had escaped him with his father’s blessings, he retaliates by taking unto himself a wife from among the Ishmaelites in addition to the wives he already had.
What transpires with Jacob, and how he finally does come to his inheritance in the end is quite another story altogether. So we will not go into it right now. Instead, let us ponder awhile and understand how the family had literally and utterly fallen apart! And all because, once again, like the first father, here’s man yet again failing to faithfully lead his household according to the will and knowledge of God. Let us learn from their individual mistakes, for now the woman can no longer cower behind the excuse of ignorance.
The remarkable Spiritual insight and wisdom both Isaac and Rebekah had displayed initially wavered as they shifted their focus to vie with one another to impart to their respective favored child the chosen inheritance. And as they went about it in their own Godless ways, they had ceased to be the Spiritual people they were called to be. Let us understand how treachery and deceit is not the way of the righteous. For all their trouble and scheming, instead of taking possession of all that he had deceitfully sought to lay hands on, to Jacob and his mother’s horror, they find that he had to leave everything behind and flee for his life instead.
Both Isaac and Rebekah were left with nothing but added trouble as Esau continued to be the source of much grief to them with his foreign wives. It was only much later, as God blesses Esau with all the worldly blessings he could desire, when he moves away with his large entourage of a growing family, increasing herds, flocks and servants to the distant land of Seir, that peace finally returns to them in their final years. By then, God in His infallible faithfulness had fulfilled His promises to them and returned Jacob to their transformed selves a completely transformed man and with the blessed and symbolic name of Israel.
For as earlier mentioned, he becomes the symbol of all righteous of God who meet their God and are thereafter transformed by His eternal Grace and Blessing forever.
JACOB AT THE MERCY OF GOD:
When neither his mother’s schemes nor his deceit helped him earn what he in his natural carnal self had desired from the time of his birth, Jacob found himself fleeing from the very inheritance he had set about confiscating, in order to save his life. Literally, everything material he had come to rely on had slipped from his hands. With neither a roof over his head nor his dear mother to look out for him, he found himself literally thrown to the elements.
Though he didn’t realize it immediately, his faith, the only thing he was left with, was put to test. Having been brought up under the guidance of his divinely foresighted mother, he had grown to know and love his God. But this knowledge had done him little good until now as in spite of it he had only lived by his human instincts. However, unbeknown to him, having been thrown at the mercy of God, all that was going to change for him. For the first time in his life, he was going to experience and live his faith. As for his mother who let go of him aware that she’d probably never see him again, she herself was comforted by God’s promise to her. And that remained her mainstay till her dying day, as she never saw her beloved son again.
The first night of his flight he found himself stranded in an open and barren land. Alone and afraid, he put a stone under his head and lay down to sleep. For the first time in his life that night he had a vision from the Lord. In his vision he saw a stairway resting on the earth and leading all the way into heaven. He saw angels ascending and descending on it. And then, right at the top, he heard the Lord speaking to him. The wonderful reassurance God gave him that night was that just as promised he would be the one to partake of his fathers’ great Spiritual and material inheritance. He heard how God was going to be with him at all times and bring him back safely, how He would also add to his inheritance the land where he was resting, how He was going to bless him and increase him and how his calling shall be of eternal nature just as it was of his father Isaac and his grandfather Abraham.
When Jacob awoke, he was quite a different man! For now he realized he was not alone. The Lord God Himself was with him. He was deeply awestruck, and as a memorial to all that had transpired there, he raised an altar there for God with the stone he had rested upon. He worshiped the Lord the only way he knew how and poured oil upon the altar as a mark of its consecration to the Lord. He called the place Bethel though it used to be known as Luz, and to this day Bethel it is called. He avowed to consecrate it as the House of God upon his safe return, also promising to give a tenth of all the blessings God had assured him about.
Now, Jacob’s response to the vision is typical of one who has yet to know God. Clearly, Jacob’s understanding was limited. However, suffice it that he had finally come to be aware of the Presence of God. God was no longer a distant Entity he had vaguely come to learn about from his parents. God had become real to him. As a result, he felt restored in spirits and continued with his journey with renewed hope. But, the vision apart, he remained distant with God and did not seek Him or His counsel. In other words, Spiritually, he remained fruitless.
Therefore, what we ought not to let go amiss is that he continued to remain the same old Jacob – carnal, shrewd and deceitful. He set about his agenda at hand as soon as he arrived at the very same trough where his mother was met by Abraham’s chief servant. There he meets Rachel, his uncle Laban’s daughter, with her flock of sheep. He finds out that it is her from the shepherds who had already gathered there for he had asked them if they knew Laban. It was at this time that they spot Rachel approaching with her flock. Whereupon, disregarding the custom of the land whereby the shepherds wait for all the flocks to gather before beginning to water each their own, he rolls the stone away from the mouth of the well and starts watering Rachel’s flock. He then introduces himself to her. She reports it to her father, and soon enough Laban receives him gladly and takes him home with him.
Jacob had fallen in love with Rachel, and he had determined to win Laban’s approval so he may win her hand in marriage. Therefore, he begins to assist Laban in his work. Impressed, Laban offers to pay him for his efforts. Jacob, who had nowhere else to go to and desirous to make Rachel his wife, offers to work for Laban seven years in return for the promise of Rachel’s hand.
Laban appeared to agree readily. But he was concerned for Leah his elder daughter who had trouble with her eyesight. He did not like the idea of seeing his younger daughter married while his elder one remained languishing. So, contrary to his promise, when the time came for him to give Rachel to Jacob as his wife after the seven years was completed, he deceives Jacob by giving his daughter Leah instead. Jacob could do nothing but accept Leah and fulfill his duties by her customary bridal week. For he knew that was the only way he could make Rachel his wife after the week was over. He also acceded to Laban’s demand for further seven years of labor for Rachel’s hand.
Thus at the end of the first week of his marriage to Leah, he married Rachel and remained in Laban’s employment for another seven years. As time moved on, while Leah gave him four sons in all, Rachel failed to even conceive.
These daughters of Abraham’s brother who stayed behind while Abraham moved on heeding his call give us a clear insight to the Spiritual growth of the entire family in general even though part of them stay back. At least, clearly noticeable among the women! Like Rebecca, Leah showed remarkable Spiritual insight. Her dependency on God is a testament to the fact. For every time, she prayed to God and was thankful to Him for helping her bear sons for Jacob. But her hopes to win her husband’s love were continually dashed. At last, by the fourth son, she turns completely Godward and ascribes to Him all due praises and honor and symbolically names her fourth son Judah.
Rachel, on the other hand, becomes embittered. Unlike Leah, she remains enslaved to her flesh. And like Jacob, she decides to have her way by hook or by crook. She offers him her maid who bears two sons to him on her behalf. She felt vindicated and decided her struggle with her sister was over. But the rivalry between the sisters had only intensified.
For Leah, discovering that she failed to conceive after her fourth son, offered her maid to Jacob who bore him two sons. To cut a long story short, at the end of it all, Jacob becomes a father of 12 sons and a daughter. While Leah bore him six sons and the daughter, Rachel bore him two sons, and their maids together contributed four sons to the list. Yes, finally, Rachel finds her prayers answered too and she bears Jacob the last of his sons whom he loved more than he loved any of his other sons.
As Jacob increases, God’s promise endures faithfully and he finds his flock increasing too. So much so, that he began to incur the envy of his brothers-in-law. For he had become very rich indeed with large flocks and plenty of servants. This in spite of the fact that Laban had in time proved himself to be a hard taskmaster and treated him unjustly at every turn, even compromising on his wages no less than ten times! Because, as opposition grew against him from all sides, he discovered that God was true to His promises and continued to bless him in every manner.
Consequently, Jacob began to depend on Him more and more and sought His counsel for everything. On the other hand, Laban consulted with spirits and mediums and remained opposed to God. When his wealth began to dwindle compared to Jacob’s, instead of turning to God, he became envious and persecuted Jacob all the more.
At last, Jacob decides to heed God’s counsel and leave Laban. With the help of his wives and his servants, he flees from the place with all his great number of servants and herds, his children included. He decides to return to his land. Meantime, Rachel, in addition, steals her father’s household gods or statues. Though Laban and his men pursue him and catches up with him, God preserves their lives. Laban was outwitted by his daughter Rachel when he does a search on them for his stolen gods of which everyone else in Jacob’s camp was unaware of. Finally, Laban realizes God was with Jacob and enters into a peace treaty with him and sends him on his way peacefully.
JACOB’S GREAT TRANSFORMATION:
To cut a long story short, Jacob had his great encounter with God once again. This time, it was on the eve of his forthcoming and dreaded encounter with his brother Esau. The last of his enemies he had to overcome before he returned to his parents. He had sent his great entourage ahead of him with a great portion of wealth meant for Esau going ahead of them. As he straddled behind on his own, he met a man, an angel in disguise actually. Perceiving him to be an enemy he wrestles with him. The angel on the other hand, not wanting to hurt Jacob in any way kept up the struggle until it was certain Jacob was not going to let go. He then touches Jacob’s hip so that the socket dislocates. Jacob then realizes he was not wrestling with an ordinary man. He pleads with the angel for the Lord’s blessings and refuses to let go of him until he was blessed.
Of course Jacob receives his blessings, which indeed was God’s plan. And so much more.
He now became a truly transformed man. As a result, he receives the God-ordained name Israel from then on. By this name he symbolized all mankind who would in the like fashion come to find God and forsake their old and sinful ways to become a new and blessed Spiritual creation in the Lord. Thus Jacob and Israel become two sides of the same coin to denote every child of God before and after his or her Spiritual restoration in the Lord.
From then on Jacob lives his life differently. God had blessed Esau so greatly that Esau looks upon his brother with favor and enters into a peace treaty with him. Jacob makes due restitution with his brother and gives him a great share of his wealth. He purges his camp of all deeds of Godlessness. He removes all foreign gods Rachel had brought with her. He was reconciled and reunited to his father. But he decides to lives apart and only takes possession of his inheritance after Esau had moved out entirely to Seir. He keeps his vow to God and builds an altar at Bethel. However, his wife Rachel failed to keep up with the last leg of his journey and dies at childbirth when her second son was born to her. God continued to appear to Him and bring His Word to him. Jacob obeyed God in everything and partook of all the blessings promised to him with more to come his way by way of his greater and eternal inheritance.
SUMMARIZING ON THE EVIL SPIRIT OF PATRIARCHY WHICH DOMINATES ALL SOCIETY OF MANKIND SINCE TIME IMMEMORIAL:
Whether starting with Adam or restarting with Noah and again restarting with Abraham, God has since the beginning been exposing the rebellion of man. Repeatedly He proves how man has broken the holy Covenant with Him. And, never mind however many times He’d give them another chance they would end up showcasing the same irrefutable truth over and over again.
As in the present case, once again, where are all the revelations made known to Abraham, the first father of the Israelites? Does Isaac show any signs of their awareness? As far as Isaac was concerned, it is written, God was just the Name of his Fear! Same with Jacob. To him, God was just the Name of the Fear of his father, until his eyes were opened by God Himself.
Why did the Word of God fail to transpire faithfully to one from the other? After all, there weren’t too many to teach then. No more than one or two sons! Why is that even after the Truth is revealed, they continued to subject themselves to the teachings of men and chose rather to revel in their flesh, their patriarchy and their sons, particularly their firstborns? Why is it that God had to literally lead them by the hand all their lives before they even began to actually comprehend and set their sights on their True Divine and Imperishable Inheritance?
Indeed, this is why the Spirit testifies, man is slow to understanding. These are humbling facts. Yet, men would neither acknowledge it to themselves nor acknowledge it before God. For, if it were so, they would gladly and willingly submit themselves to Him in all humility and learn from Him. But, no, they choose rather to live with the foolish notion of their superiority and mislead others into believing the same.
As we have discovered here, it is a fact THAT IF IT WAS NOT FOR THE FAITHFULNESS OF GOD NONE OF THEM WOULD HAVE MADE THE DIVINE LIST. It took them their entire lives to truly reconcile with God. So it is with everyone. None are found faithful to God, and consequently none can be faithful to their fellow-men. So, who should man turn to? Is it not to God Who Alone is Faithful and True?
Abraham, Isaac and Jacob are God’s testaments to the fact that no man can find God on his own. They are God’s success stories. They are not for men to gloat over so that they may justify their building a culture, a way of life around them or the men they are misled to idolize.
Yet, because they do so, they remain exposed in their folly. Therefore, it is not a wonder that those that do so have nothing to do with God’s holy laws or His surpassing righteousness. Instead they end up building their own accursed empires based on their own warped and twisted teachings, as worthless and perishable as themselves!!
This is true of each one of them. Each one of them, whether mentioned in the Bible or outside the Bible. Each one of them, even down the generations of the Israelites. Never mind, whose story we follow up on. The pattern is the same. The Old Testament, since the time of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, is both a historical and Spiritual chronicling of the lives of all their sons. And we find, either one ends up utterly astray, like Ishmael, Hagar and Esau or one ends up saved just at the nick of time like Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
When God reveals the fact every time He names them, and in that order, i.e. to say, concluding with Jacob – it is meant to remind us how like Jacob we end up even though we believe we are called of God. IT IS NOT A CALL TO EXULT IN THEM OR THE PATRIARCHY THEY SEEM TO SYMBOLIZE TO ALL ADVOCATES OF FLESH.
For, Jacob symbolizes all mankind before they are reconciled to God. Whether male or female! This is why all who are thus reconciled, like Jacob, will forsake their evil ways to become a true Israel. And in every one thus called and set apart, it is God’s holy Name that will be exalted for it is God Himself Who took His Word to them when they lived as Jacobs and continues to take it to them when they are renewed in Him as Israels SO THAT THEY MAY TRULY DISPLAY THE SPLENDOR OF HIS HOLINESS.
(to be updated weekly until conclusion)