A STUDY OF GENESIS
** Please read Genesis Chapter One before proceeding or you will have difficulty understanding this teaching.
Before beginning with Genesis chapter 2, we should go back to the end of Genesis chapter 1, which, when rightly divided, CLEARLY ENDS WITH VERSE THREE (3) OF CHAPTER 2. Remember, chapters were added by man and are not a part of the original Word of God.
To offer even more proof of this, we need to examine the first word of chapter 2, verse 1 which is "Thus". This word is a conjunction which only strengthens our conclusion in our study of chapter one, that this verse, is in reality, an extension of chapter one. Here are the first three verses of chapter two once again:
Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.
It should be clear that these verses belong to and CONCLUDE chapter one. You can clearly see, by this example, that the translators have made errors when dividing the Bible into chapters and verses. There are other examples in God's Word of this particular nature. Let's take a look at only one pertaining to ‘ITALICS’:
Words in italics are ADDED by the translators. They are often incorrect and can cause no end of confusion and difficulty and can result in apparent contradictions in the Word. One of the noted examples of this is the usage IN ITALICS of the word "GIFTS" in I Corinthians Chapters 12, 13, and 14. THIS WORD WAS ADDED BY THE TRANSLATORS AND RESULTS IN THE WRONGLY DIVIDING OF THE WORD OF GOD -- PRIVATE INTERPRETATION. There are nine MANIFESTATIONS of Holy Spirit -- they are not gifts. The Holy Spirit we receive when born again is a GIFT. Then we, by our believing, can operate the manifestations of Holy Spirit. This one word in italics causes great confusion and misunderstanding among Christians and results in powerless Christians who think God favors some people and not others. NOT TRUE. That alone is saying God is a respecter of persons and James clearly states that God is not a respecter of persons -- BUT OF CONDITIONS, that being to believe and act on His rightly divided Word.
Now let's get back to God's Word and study each verse in more detail. Now remember, that grammatically and logically, these three verses are the END OF CHAPTER 1.
1. Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them.
This is the second heaven and earth as recorded in Peter.
II Peter 3: 7 -- But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.
This second heaven and earth is the period in which we now live. The third heaven and earth is in the future in the Book of Revelation in paradise and the first heaven and earth was in Genesis 1: 1 that became without form and void.
I once read, on a so-called internet Christian site, that the 3rd heaven and earth was way out in outer space where extra-terrestrial beings lived!!!!! I did believe that the writer was out there! You know, there is a Proverb in God's Word somewhere (I'll have to read the Bible sometime) that says if you look for trouble, you'll find it. Keep away from people who guess at what the Word means. The Bible interprets itself in one of three ways -- 1) In the verse right where it is written 2) In the context and 3) Where it was used before. That eliminates the guesswork........ and the flying saucers.
2. And on [by*] the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made.
* The word "on" in Estrangelo Aramaic is the prefix "b". In both the Estrangelo Aramaic and Hebrew, this prefix may be translated "on", "by", "at", or "near" among other things. In context, it is very clear that the translation should be "by."
God ended his work on the sixth day and He rested on the seventh. God didn't rest because He was tired, but because He rested from his activity. It was finished. When the Bible records that Jesus Christ ascended into the heavens and sat down, the same word "rested" is used. His job was finished. In Acts 2 on the day of Pentecost, the spirit sat on each of the believers, the same word "rested" is used. The word "rested" is often used in the Bible to represent a work that is finished.
3. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.
This verse logically concludes Chapter One and supports what God said in verse 2. Notice how it interprets itself right in the verse where it is written. Most of God's Word interprets itself right in the verse.
4. These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the Lord God made the earth and the heavens,
CLEARLY verse 4 is an entirely different thought and should be the beginning of chapter two (2). The verse, in itself, is self-explanatory.
Please read verses 5 and 6 -- We see here that God wanted someone to till or serve the ground, but there was no one. So God sent up a mist from the whole earth to water the ground.
7. And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.
There are some tremendous truths in this verse so let's look at it closely. The Hebrew word for 'formed' is yatsar and it means "fashioned out of something that was already in existence". (Remember, everything was CREATED in Genesis Verse 1). Man was formed out of the dust of the ground. The word "man" is adam and means "red earth". Man's body is composed of the same elements as are in the dust of the earth. Because of the law that everything must ultimately return to its original state, the body must return to dust.
Ecclesiastes 3: 20 -- All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again.
[At this point, it would be best if you studied the teaching "BODY - SOUL - SPIRIT"]
We should understand from verse 7 that God FORMED the BODY of man but what else did God do? He MADE the SOUL (nepesh) of man. Soul is that which gives the body it's life, it's vitality. The verse says God "breathed into his nostrils the breath of life." How can God do this if He is a Spirit?
This is one of very many FIGURES OF SPEECH used in the Bible which is the Holy Spirit's way of marking important points in His Word. A figure of speech grabs your attention and makes you stop and think.
What is more descriptive? "The ground is dry" OR "The ground is thirsty." The latter is a figure of speech. This particular Figure of Speech used in verse 7 is called condescensio. This is when God attributes human characteristics to himself. I have worked Figures Of Speech Used In The Bible by Bullinger for 18 months, marking almost all figures of speech in my Bible. You will sometimes be asked the question by the Christian who never really studies the Bible -- "Can you take the Bible literally?" Not where a figure of speech is being used. So learning figures of speech can only help you to have a greater understanding of God's Word. Bullinger's work is the most exhaustive work available on this subject of figures of speech used in the Bible.
8. And the Lord God planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed.
Here we have mention of the Garden of Eden or paradise. Paradise is a heaven on earth where God was with man and could talk to man. There was no sickness, sin, or death. Paradise is always a place on earth according to God's Word. We find "paradise" in Genesis Chapter 2 and never again until Revelation 21, when there is a new heaven and a new earth. This verse tells us that this is where God originally put man whom He had formed -- in paradise here on earth.
9. And out of the ground made the Lord God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil.
The verse talks about the trees that God made to grow in the Garden of Eden. Now here is an occurrence where the Word makes mention of the "tree of life" and the "tree of knowledge of good and evil". Neither in the verse, or the context, or used before, have I ever clearly learned the accurate meaning of these different trees. I refuse to "guess" as God forbids this in II Peter 1: 20. There is much private interpretation in this area. However, the Bible says the secret things belong unto God. He has given us enough in His Word to manifest the more than abundant life.
John 10: 10b -- ……. I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
If God doesn't tell us, we simply don't know and apparently don't NEED to know. This is God's prerogative. We always have the revelation manifestations [not gifts] if we need them. If you need to know something above God's Word, God will tell you via Word of Knowledge, Word of Wisdom or Discerning of Spirits. These 3 manifestations are referred to as the "eyes and ears of the Church" and are operated by our believing. They did NOT cease to exist after the Apostles died. Our personal adversary would love if Christians would go on believing that lie. This enemy does not come right out in the open -- he deceives by mixing in part truth with lies. We will see this in detail in chapter three. The god of this world influences people to believe error such as the seemingly innocent usage of the word "gifts" instead of the accuracy of God's perfect Word which states "MANIFESTATIONS". There is a major difference.
What we do know for a certainty about verse 9 is that God has placed another Figure of Speech at the end of the verse. This figure is used often in the Bible and is called HENDIADYS -- "Two words used, but one thing meant." The phrase "of good and evil" literally means "of evil enjoyment." This does help us in understanding more about this tree. Apparently, it was the source of some type of pleasure that God did not approve of. It's the lesson that is important. We'll see later that God gave Adam and Eve all they could ever want and asked them not to do ONE THING. The enemy is a master of deception and the only thing that defeats him is the rightly divided Word of God. When living in the renewed mind of a believer, the Word of God allows us to live as more than conquerors.
Romans 8: 37 -- Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that [who] loved us.
You've got to know the genuine [GOD'S WORD] to recognize the counterfeit [part truths and half truths.].
PLEASE READ verses 10 through 14. These verses are very interesting from a geographical and historical point of view. (Did you read them?) This river that God used to water the Garden of Eden in verse 10 separated into four streams or rivers. The Pison [Pishon] and Gihon were canals that connected the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. In verse 14, Hiddekel is the ancient name of the Tigris river. -- The New Unger's Bible Dictionary
15. And the Lord God took the man, and put him into the garden to dress it [serve it] and to keep it [work and preserve it].
16, 17. And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shall not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.
What died the day Adam and Eve ate of this tree? Did Adam and Eve die? No, they went on to live for a long time. This is where it is crucial to understand the difference between body, soul, and spirit as defined from God's Word.
Remember in verse 7, God formed the body of man and made his soul. Then back in Genesis 1: 26 [See “A Study Of Genesis Chapter One”], we learned that God created man in His OWN IMAGE and we know that God is Spirit and that God created Spirit for man. THAT IS WHAT DIED WHEN ADAM AND EVE DISOBEYED GOD. They lost their SPIRITUAL CONNECTION with God and were now just body and soul. God took the Spirit back and drove them out of the garden of Eden as we will see when we study chapter three. The critics of God's Word try to use this verse 17 to say the Bible is full of errors. The Bible as originally written fits like a hand in a glove when worked to the point that it is rightly divided [a perfectly right cutting]. God is perfect so His Word must be perfect. The error lies in man's misunderstandings or mistranslations. The Bible was written for the believer, not for the unbeliever. As a result of this sin by Adam and Eve, every person is still born into this world today as a BODY and SOUL person. They must confess Jesus Christ as Lord in their life and believe that God raised Jesus Christ from the dead to be born again of God's Spirit and therefore become body, soul, and SPIRIT. It's not difficult to understand but it is one of the most important truths from God's Word.
18. And the Lord God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make an help meet for him.
We may wonder why so many marriages fail today when God is usually last and not first in the married couple's life. God spells out many details of how we should conduct ourselves in a Christian marriage relationship in His Word. And way back in Genesis, God, our Heavenly Father, says, in regards to man, "I will make an help meet for him." There are definitely two parties involved here, but in this case, God is saying that "a woman should bring the best out of a man via assistance." That is so important and how often do we see the OPPOSITE. And yes, men do the same. There is a scripture in Ecclesiastes that refers to a Godly marriage as a three-fold cord that is not easily broken. The three cords that are interwoven are God, man and woman. When God is first in BOTH people's lives, that marriage relationship is like a rock. The winds may blow, but it stands -- it can't be moved.
PLEASE READ verses 19 and 20. This is where Adam was giving names to all of God's creatures. Now notice that it is brought up again that there was not yet found an help meet for Adam. He was lonely and needed someone to keep him company and to help or assist him.
21. And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh thereof;
22. And the rib, which the Lord God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man.
There is a record in the Old Testament where God was finally able to get something done for a man of God because the prophet was in a position where he HAD TO "let go and let God". He was asleep! Have you ever noticed when you stop worrying about a problem and relax [believe] that is when it gets solved? Oftentimes, our doubts, worries, and fears hinder or limit God since everything we receive from God comes by believing -- either positive or negative. What we believe is what we receive. A three-part teaching on this dynamic "The Law Of Believing" is available to you.
Isn't it just wonderful how God works with us? He waited for Adam to be deeply asleep when He performed quite a major operation. [Don't confuse this with the counterfeit and most devilish psychic surgery.] He made a woman out of the long rib of man and He brought her unto the man. Could you picture the reaction of Adam? God wants to bless His children and meet their needs. He knew Adam had a need and a want that were equal in intensity. That is one of the requirements we must meet to receive anything from God.
23. And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman [Isha], because she was taken out of Man [Ish]. [emphasis added]
Here is another beautiful illustration of the Holy Spirit's marking as to what is important in His Word. God wants to grab our attention and make us stop, think, and take notice. So He placed, in this verse, the figure of speech Ampliatio or Adjournment which means "a retaining of an old name after the reason for it is passed away" (i.e. an old name for a new thing). The Latin root is amplio which means to "fill out" or "extend". Hence, it's more special and technical sense -- "to adjourn" (i.e. to "extend the time"). Though the bone and flesh of Adam were changed and made into Eve, yet the name of the original source, "bone" and "flesh" is retained.
24. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.
After studying this verse, we see that it is also repeated almost word for word in Ephesians 5: 31 and Matthew 19: 5. (This should be noted in the center reference of your Bible.) I believe the "Can you take the Bible literally?" question needs to be addressed again. Can you picture a man 'cleaving' to his wife?! Can you picture both of them joining together into 'one flesh'? It's ridiculous, isn't it? That is why a red light goes on in my head when someone asks me about taking the Bible literally. In God's Word, he warns us about questions that do nothing but gender strife. We need to be spiritually sharp and mature to recognize when someone is getting us to waste our time -- someone who refuses to believe the Word. When you are unsure of something and don't know what the Bible says, ask God and search your heart. If your heart is right with God, it will guide you to make the proper decision, in this case, spend more time with this person or politely excuse yourself and move on.
We also have another figure of speech in this verse:
The verse is not saying that a man is to forsake and no longer love or care for his parents. There is a simple but important figure of speech used here called HYPERBOLE or Exaggeration -- "when more is said than is literally meant." By being aware of and understanding figures of speech, the accuracy of God's Word will open up to you.
I want to point out the phrase "one flesh" used at the end of the verse. A married couple with God first in their lives will eventually reach the point where they have unity of purpose in all that they do. They learn to work together and in cooperation with one another. They put aside all conflict and live according to God's Word manifesting positives (joy, peace, patience, trust etc.) in their marriage relationship. THIS TAKES TIME. Obviously, the phrase "one flesh" is a figure of speech.
25. And they were both naked [arum - prudent, wise, sharp], the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.
They had nothing to hide before God. We will see later, in chapter three, that man, after the fall, became sin-conscious. Not knowing one's five Sonship rights in our present time period, and condemnation contributes greatly to a believer’s broken fellowship. Often, we do not sin in God's eyes, but we do, in our own eyes.
Romans 8: 1 -- There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus. [The verse ends here. The scribe was looking at the end of verse 4.]
There is never any profit in condemnation -- it is sin -- broken fellowship. We are often taught to condemn ourselves through religion which is based on private interpretation.
"A BELIEVER'S STANDING AND STATE" is an important teaching that every Christian should understand. "Standing" is Sonship and is permanent. "State" is fellowship and it fluctuates. We can and do sin. Staying in fellowship is the secret.
To understand how God organized this second heaven and earth and the rules which were originally established, we must have a minute and detailed knowledge of the first few chapters of Genesis. We must understand the origins of life and its laws if we are to perceive the greatness of God's Word and the justness of His laws. In Genesis lies the foundation of the accuracy of God’s matchless Word.