Focus    on Purpose
Focus    on Purpose
If I have faith to move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing
Focus    on Purpose
If I have faith to move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing
© Focus On Purpose July 2017

“You Shall Surely

Die.”

“…from the tree of the knowledge of good

and evil you shall not eat, for in the day

that you eat from it you shall surely die.”

Genesis 2:17

But they did not…

This past week, I have been pondering on what God meant when He told Adam and Eve that they would "surely die" when they ate the fruit of the tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. They did not die physically after eating the fruit; Adam lived for 930 years. I have been taught that a process of physical death was started when they ate the fruit, but they immediately died spiritually as they were separated from God at that moment. To me separation from God means a withdrawal and no contact - effectively an aloofness. This was supposedly demonstrated by their being cast out of the Garden of Eden. I have also been taught that in this separation, God does not hear the prayers of a sinner, other than the “sinners” prayer asking for salvation. But I don't see this reality in Scripture. The physical death process yes, but immediate spiritual death? God withdrawing from us? After confronting Adam and Eve with their sin and its consequences to them, the first thing God did, was not to remove Himself, but cover their shame. They were cast out of the garden for their protection not for punishment. They were cast out so that they do not eat of the Tree of Life and live forever in a sinful state. In the very next 'scene' we have God connecting with Cain, exhorting him to control his spirit and master the sin that was crouching at his door. As a God who is love, I do not believe He was taunting Cain and telling him to do something He knew Cain was incapable of doing. And then I thought of Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Moses, Daniel, David, Elijah, Job,... If humanity died spiritually, then what about these people? How did they connect with God? If the spiritual death was immediate separation from God, then why do we still see God connecting to man as He speaks to Cain, encouraging him to do what is right? How is it that Enoch can walk so closely with God that he does not experience death - neither spiritual nor physical? And how is it that Noah could be declared as righteous? On the day Adam and Eve sinned, the first thing they experienced was shame, and this shame caused them to hide. And God came to find them… Could it be that spiritual death, as with physical death, is a process? Sin brings separation, but that separation comes because of shame and we hide from God because of that shame; sin also brings pride and pride refuses to come to Him because it will not yield to the shame of appearing wrong. So instead of humbling ourselves before God, we become hostile before Him and blame Him for our predicament? What I see is a loving God pursing man in grace; but I also see a progression of man moving further and further away from God - except for some; just a handful, who chose to respond to God’s invitation to relationship, and their lives were radically different from anyone else. Just some questions to stimulate thinking - I would love to hear your thoughts. Please feel free to mail me  We will coninue next week.
Prev Next
Focus    on Purpose
If I have faith to move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing
© Focus On Purpose July 2017

“You Shall Surely

Die.”

“…from the tree of the knowledge of

good and evil you shall not eat, for in

the day that you eat from it you shall

surely die.” Genesis 2:17

But they did not…

This past week, I have been pondering on what God meant when He told Adam and Eve that they would "surely die" when they ate the fruit of the tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. They did not die physically after eating the fruit; Adam lived for 930 years. I have been taught that a process of physical death was started when they ate the fruit, but they immediately died spiritually as they were separated from God at that moment. To me separation from God means a withdrawal and no contact - effectively an aloofness. This was supposedly demonstrated by their being cast out of the Garden of Eden. I have also been taught that in this separation, God does not hear the prayers of a sinner, other than the “sinners” prayer asking for salvation. But I don't see this reality in Scripture. The physical death process yes, but immediate spiritual death? God withdrawing from us? After confronting Adam and Eve with their sin and its consequences to them, the first thing God did, was not to remove Himself, but cover their shame. They were cast out of the garden for their protection  not for punishment. They were cast out so that they do not eat of the Tree of Life and live forever in a sinful state. In the very next 'scene' we have God connecting with Cain, exhorting him to control his spirit and master the sin that was crouching at his door. As a God who is love, I do not believe He was taunting Cain and telling him to do something He knew Cain was incapable of doing. And then I thought of Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Moses, Daniel, David, Elijah, Job,... If humanity died spiritually, then what about these people? How did they connect with God? If the spiritual death was immediate separation from God, then why do we still see God connecting to man as He speaks to Cain, encouraging him to do what is right? How is it that Enoch can walk so closely with God that he does not experience death - neither spiritual nor physical? And how is it that Noah could be declared as righteous? On the day Adam and Eve sinned, the first thing they experienced was shame, and this shame caused them to hide. And God came to find them… Could it be that spiritual death, as with physical death, is a process? Sin brings separation, but that separation comes because of shame and we hide from God because of that shame; sin also brings pride and pride refuses to come to Him because it will not yield to the shame of appearing wrong. So instead of humbling ourselves before God, we become hostile before Him and blame Him for our predicament? What I see is a loving God pursing man in grace; but I also see a progression of man moving further and further away from God - except for some; just a handful, who chose to respond to God’s invitation to relationship, and their lives were radically different from anyone else. Just some questions to stimulate thinking - I would love to hear your thoughts. Please feel free to mail me  We will coninue next week.
Focus    on Purpose
Focus    on Purpose
If I have faith to move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing
Prev Next