Archive for July, 2010
Genesis 1 speaks of the creation of the singular, androgynous man (both male and female) in Gods own image.
Genesis 2 speaks of the division of woman from man, ending with the two becoming one flesh in marriage.
Genesis 3 goes beyond the two becoming one by adding a third quality to the picture and that is desire.
This Hebrew word for desire is ta’avah, meaning a lustful or covetous desire; the first place this word is found is in Gen.3:6.
Gen.3:6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was desirable (ta’avah) to the eyes, and a tree to be desired (chamad) to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.
When Eve is confronted with the naked (`aruwm) temptation of the serpent’s offer of the forbidden fruit it awakens within her a desire that was not present before, which she shares with Adam who is there by her side, resulting in the realization of their nakedness. This awareness of nakedness manifests itself as shame….thus a connection between man and woman forms that was not present before desire was woken up by temptation.
Pro.13:12 Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire (ta’avah) cometh, it is a tree of life.
Pro.19:22 The desire (ta’avah) of a man is his kindness: and a poor man is better than a liar.
When man was created in the image of God he was created male and female, that is to say man contained within his being wholeness, at separation when the female was taken from the man each being now lacked completeness which would be the force at play attracting them back together, to once again become one flesh. The initial portrayal of Adams relationship with Eve was one of reunification, an attraction not based on lustful desire, but instead based on the need to be complete…bringing his own flesh back to himself in marriage as one flesh. It was only after they gained an awareness of lustful desire through eating the forbidden fruit did their love based on the completeness of being one flesh change to that of a lustful desire for each other, going beyond that of two halves simply reconnecting to become whole.
Man’s initial condition in the Garden of Eden is portrayed as that of complacency, so it is as if he needed to be tempted to give him the reason to go beyond complacency and grow. In the Garden all their needs were met, so an external attraction was required to awaken within them a reason to go beyond their status-quo. The archetypal figure of the Serpent was the instrument used in the story to cause Eve to break out of that complacency by sparking a lustful desire that goes beyond their static condition of having all their needs met….in a sense the Serpent figure was itself the desire Eve had for knowledge presented externally in the story as “the Tempter”. The Serpent could be viewed as Eves own desire awakening within her that compelled her to act upon the temptation of eating of the fruit that was desirable to her yet forbidden. In sharing this new found desire with Adam, both then could experience a connection between themselves not present before. This connection was manifest as the experience of shame in their realization of their nakedness.
The consequence of this awakened desire was banishment from the Garden which can be compared to a child who reaches maturity and leaves home to begin life on his own, never again being able to return to the innocence of childhood. Adam and Eve were now forever barred from re-entering the Garden through the same door with which they left, hence the imagery of angels with flaming swords guarding the entrance to the Garden. Now the way of access to the Tree of Life is through re-birth in Jesus, which is presented to us in the book of Revelation and takes place on a spiritual level.
Gen.3:22 And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:
Rev.22:2 In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.
Rev.22:14 Blessed are they that do His commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.