So, what happened next? Man who was made by God on the sixth day was placed in the Garden of Eden to dress and keep it as the bible says in Genesis 2:15. The word “keep” in the scripture describing Adam’s responsibilities is translated from the Hebrew word “Shamar,” which means to guard or protect. Keep in mind Adam had no fear of any creature in the garden, and he was well able to handle any animal or God made being in the world.
Man and woman had specific responsibilities in this new world and many freedoms, but only one limitation was placed on their activities. That limitation was established by God when he said,” 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 shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.” Genesis 2:16, 17 (King James Version). This restriction was placed on man and woman because they must learn to exercise their will in a trusting relationship with God. Remember, man and woman had their own God-given human will. They were not mindless robots of God. Man must learn humility in putting God’s word first. Adam and Eve were to develop a trust relationship with God, one that was instituted on the integrity of God’s word.
There is nothing in the restriction of God towards the man and woman that suggests God sought man’s downfall. It is a fair and simple requirement of the creator. There is instead much to show us that God made obedience easy. He created man without a sinful nature created in innocents. He placed man in an ideal environment, provided for all his temporal needs. Then God endowed him with strong mental powers, gave him work to engage his hands and his mind, and provided a life partner for him. He also warned him of the consequences of disobedience and entered into a personal relationship with man and woman. Surely, we cannot blame God for man’s failure in light of these facts.
But man listened to another voice in the serpent, who perverted what God said and made it sound like God held something back from Adam and Eve. The voice of the serpent was the voice of Satan, a rebellious fallen angel. Satan wanted to persuade the woman to disobey God’s warning. Satan challenged what God said and told Eve,” And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil. Genesis 3:4-5 (KJV).” Satan’s only power in this situation was deception. “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.” 1 Corinthians 10:13. God will not let Satan tempt his child in a supernatural way or beyond their ability to overcome. Satan must operate under the limitations of the physical world.
Where was Adam when the serpent was tempting Eve? Does scripture tell us? I believe so. In Genesis 3:6, speaking of the woman, it says,” And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired 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.” Adam was “with her “ as the verse says during the confrontation with Satan, not on the other side of the garden. Adam could have asserted his God-given authority and spoke the word of God in this situation. Adam could have rebuked the serpent for telling lies and cast him from the garden. 1 Timothy 2:14 says Adam was not deceived, but the woman was. It was Adam’s place to guard this creation of God against this lying intruder, Satan. The man was god’s under-ruler. He did not take his responsibility; he willfully bowed himself to Satan and disobeyed God. To know to do right and not to do it is a sin, James 4:17.
Although the man and woman’s body did not die right away, something died in man and woman at the moment of their disobedience. Death came to man and woman’s spirit. Instead of them reaching out to God’s Spirit of life, man and woman’s human spirit became spiritually dead through sin. God had said, “ In the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.” God saw man as a total spirit man with his own soul in his physical body. And when God spoke of death, he referred to the spirit first because it was humanity’s personal connection with the life-giving God. For what is death but separation from life, and there is no life apart from God because God is life. That was the day man and woman became more physical than spiritual. They lost their ability to commune and deal with God face to face, and their minds were flooded with evil. Humanity existed now in the physical because they chose to draw their knowledge from the material world instead of the spiritual life-giving God. .
Adam and Eve became children of disobedience. The power of sin was not in the tree of the knowledge of good and evil but the disobedience of Adam and Eve. Satan, the father of disobedience because he disobeyed God first, became man’s illegitimate stepfather. Adam and Eve listened to the words of the Devil instead of the words of God. Romans 5:19 says,” By one man’s disobedience many were made sinners…”
ADAM AND EVE
GOD spirit soul body EARTH
To illustrate what happened to Adam and Eve, picture man as three circles representing spirit, soul, and body. These circles are intertwined, locked together, and existing in both the spiritual and the physical world, with the soul in the middle between realms. The spirit connected to the spiritual, and the body is connected to the physical world and flesh. Man and woman were created to draw knowledge from spiritual and the physical and make life decisions based on their understanding of what they perceived in their heart and soul. Using the intellect and free human will God gave them, they needed to cling to the things of life from God’s Spirit and not dwell on the material things of the earth like the forbidden fruit of the tree of knowledge. But man and woman turned to the creation instead of the creator, and the result was spiritual death. Man and woman, although biologically alive, were spiritually dead and alienated from God. Their guilt and shame made them hide from God in the garden. Creation itself groaned and changed into a death cycle that exists to this day. Adam and Eve eventually died physically and returned to the dirt from which they were made. The earth was cursed and held in a dominion of death, and Satan became the god of this world because man gave power to him
The universe is governed by law. God’s plan from beginning to end is based on a system of divine justice. It has a legal foundation; God’s grant of authority and dominion over the earth was a legal gift. What man did with it was his own responsibility. Adam made the wrong choice and lost his position in the universe. God could not lawfully step in and repossess it for him. Without a doubt, Omnipotent God had the power to void Satan’s conquest of Adam and his heritage, but that would have violated God’s principles.
So, the next illustration of man shows spiritual death, stopping the pathway to God and making it hard for a man to communicate with the Spiritual God. His soul was now overwhelmed with physical knowledge from his body and five senses. He was now incomplete and living with an unbalanced perspective of the spiritual world and the physical world. He had to work by the sweat of his brow. The ground was cursed and would not freely yield fruit to him. And one day, his body would return to the ground where he came from, Genesis 3:17-19.
Satan became the prince of the power of the air and began working in the children of disobedience his evil nature, and man and woman became the children of wrath, Ephesians 2:2-3. Man’s thoughts of his heart were evil continually, Genesis 6:5. Man learned in time how to steal, kill, and destroy. He received his knowledge of evil. The first male born to Eve, Cain, killed his brother, Able, because of jealousy. Man and woman became a product of their own physical lust and desires with such evil intent that God destroyed the world and all living with a flood with only Noah and his family escaping destruction, Genesis 7:23-24.
Man did not have the power to restore his spiritual relationship with God. And because a man and woman were spiritually dead, God did not have ready access to the heart and soul of man as he did before the fall of man and woman. But God’s Spirit did not stop striving with man. It was conditional; any glimpse of faith and trust in the heart of man towards God was still honored by God with his blessing. For this reason, Noah, Abraham, Moses, and other men are described as men who walked with God and men of faith. Their belief in God and willingness to do what God asks was counted to them as righteousness. God could deal with humanity through them, but so far-reaching was the sin of Adam that even these men did not go to heaven when they died because they were spiritually dead and disconnected from the presents of God.
Where did the soul of spiritually dead men and women go after death? What was a dying person’s fate because of the fall in the Garden of Eden? Jesus tells us what happens to men and women at the end of life. In Jesus’ words, he tells us the story of the rich man and Lazarus. “There was a certain rich man who was clothed in purple and fine linen and fared sumptuously every day. “But there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, full of sores, who was laid at his gate, “desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man’s table. Moreover, the dogs came and licked his sores. “So it was that the beggar died and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s bosom. The rich man also died and was buried.
“And being in torments in Hades, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. “Then he cried and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.’ “But Abraham said, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things; but now he is comforted, and you are tormented. ‘And besides all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed so that those who want to pass from here to you cannot, nor can those from there pass to us.’ Luke 16:20-26 (NKJV). We know that Jesus based all his stories and parables on fact and truth, so we can be confident that the descriptions in the story are accurate and describe an actual place called Hades.
The two leading players in this were the rich man and Lazarus. They both died, and their souls or personalities went to a place prepared for the Godless and the faithful. The rich man found himself in an area of torment, and Lazarus was in Abraham’s bosom, or Paradise as it referred to in other places in the bible. They were separated by a great gulf, which made it impossible to go from the place of torment to paradise. This area is the realm of the dead or Hades, and it was the holding place for the dead for thousands of years. Those in Paradise were awaiting the full redemption of their souls, and the sons of disobedience were tormented in the place of pain.
There is much misunderstanding about the death experience. The bible is clear about what happens when death comes to the body. The bible calls the body the house or tabernacle of the soul. The body without the soul is inanimate or without life; thus, it decays and goes back to the ground from where it came. The reference to death as sleep in the bible refers to the sleep of the body and the hope that it will awaken to new life and be reunited with the soul and the spirit and live in the New Jerusalem with God and His Son Jesus.
Acts 3:23 states that the soul can be destroyed, Hebrews 10:39 says the soul can be saved, James 5:20 tells us the soul can be saved from death. David understood what happens to the body and soul when he said in Psalms 16:9-10 (NKJV), “Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoices; My flesh (body) also will rest in hope. For You will not leave my soul in Sheol, Nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption.” The Hebrew word Sheol is sometimes called Hades or the place of the dead. The verse infers that a person’s personality or his soul has a place to go at physical death.
The learned men of scripture did not correct Jesus when he suggested that a man’s personality, both rich and poor, has a place to go when their body dies. Jesus addressed his disciples and people of that time in the proper Old Testament understanding of death. Jesus came to change that, as we will see later in his personal fulfillment of scripture.
The truth is no man, after the fall of man before Jesus came, went to God’s heaven at death. John 1:18 says,” No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him “(NKJV). “No one has ascended to heaven but He who came down from heaven, that is, the Son of Man who is in heaven. John 3:13 (NKJV). We also know that no man comes to the Father but by Jesus, John 14:6. But I am getting ahead of myself. We will see what part Jesus played in humankind. We will see who Jesus was and what he has to do with us and who we are.
“Thou will not leave my soul in Hell.”