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Temptation By Satan

INTRODUCTION: God made Eve to be a "help meet" for Adam; and all ancestry in the human race began through the offspring of this first husband and wife. Jehovah God, as He rested from His works of creation on the seventh day, said that all He had made was "very good." Jehovah had given Adam and Eve the instruction to multiply and fill the earth before the temptation by the Serpent brought the fall into sin for all mankind. Satan will have influence in this present world until Jehovah God puts all corrupted things aside, and establishes the eternal Kingdom of God.

NOTE: Bible passages are from the 1901 American Standard Version.

A - MAN BECAME A LIVING SOUL BY THE BREATH OF LIFE

Genesis 2 "4 These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that Jehovah God made earth and heaven. 5 And no plant of the field was yet in the earth, and no herb of the field had yet sprung up; for Jehovah God had not caused it to rain upon the earth: and there was not a man to till the ground; 6 but there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground. 7 And Jehovah God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul."

COMMENTS: The text of Genesis chapter 1 provides a general outline of the seven days of creation, and the above passage is somewhat of a restatement related to mankind. The plants and herbs had not sprung forth from the ground because the rain had not yet come, but there was a mist that covered the whole ground. Mankind would cultivate the ground to manage the reproduction of desirable plants and herbs. Though the phrase "dust of the ground" might give us the thought of a substance having little potential for any growth; Jehovah formed a very complex human body that is nourished by the elements and compounds that plants and animals draw forth from the "dust" of the ground. Jehovah animated the first man when He breathed into the nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living soul within the body Jehovah had formed. Reproduction "after his kind" was designed so the earth could be filled as Jehovah had commanded. There was no sin in mankind when Jehovah rested on the seventh day from His works of creation.

B - JEHOVAH GOD PLANTED THE GARDEN OF EDEN

Genesis 2 "8 And Jehovah God planted a garden eastward, in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed. 9 And out of the ground made Jehovah 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 the knowledge of good and evil. 10 And a river went out of Eden to water the garden; and from thence it was parted, and became four heads. 11 The name of the first is Pishon: that is it which compasseth the whole land of Havilah, where there is gold; 12 and the gold of that land is good: there is bdellium and the onyx stone. 13 And the name of the second river is Gihon: the same is it that compasseth the whole land of Cush. 14 And the name of the third river is Hiddekel: that is it which goeth in front of Assyria. And the fourth river is the Euphrates. 15 And Jehovah God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it."

COMMENTS: Moses was guided by the Holy Spirit to write Scripture, and he used some of the above geographic terms that were in use at the time period when he wrote the book of Genesis. His writing was centuries after there were only eight survivors who came out of the ark with Noah, after the great flood that had encompassed the whole earth with all land being underwater. After the dry land appeared, The many tribes of people were all descended from the three sons of Noah. The widespread territories they occupied or traveled in had identities related to tribal names or individuals. But in the beginning, Jehovah God planted a garden "eastward," in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed. Jehovah made every tree that was for food to eat: also the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil were in the midst of the garden. Jehovah God put the man into the garden of Eden to dress and to keep it. These details may seem to be very basic, and might engender a variety of questions. Jehovah God has plans and purposes that often are mysterious to mankind; and some of those may never be fully comprehended. But whatever understanding of truth that is granted, is revealed by the Holy Spirit.

1 Corinthians 2 "12 But we received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is from God; that we might know the things that were freely given to us of God. 13 Which things also we speak, not in words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Spirit teacheth; combining spiritual things with spiritual [words]. 14 Now the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him; and he cannot know them, because they are spiritually judged."


C - THE FRUIT OF THE TREE OF THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOOD AND EVIL WAS FORBIDDEN

Genesis 2 "16 And Jehovah God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: 17 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. 18 And Jehovah God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a help meet for him. 19 And out of the ground Jehovah God formed every beast of the field, and every bird of the heavens; and brought them unto the man to see what he would call them: and whatsoever the man called every living creature, that was the name thereof. 20 And the man gave names to all cattle, and to the birds of the heavens, and to every beast of the field; but for man there was not found a help meet for him."

COMMENTS: The tree of life was not stated to be forbidden at the same time that the tree of the knowledge of good and evil was forbidden. The very day that eating from the forbidden tree took place, death would become a sure consequence, in the unchangeable time-frame set by Jehovah. But we cannot be sure that Adam understood at first that the judgment of death did not need to be immediate. Jehovah formed out of the ground all animals of the field and every bird of the air, and allowed Adam to give them names. None of these were suitable for a help meet for Adam, and Jehovah did not want him to be alone.

The Hebrew term (Strong's #05828) is translated twice in Genesis as "help meet" and 19 times as "help" in other passages of the Bible. The use of the word "meet" may express the role of "meeting" certain needs that require some form of help. Other passages of Scripture remind us that there is no better help than that which is provided by our God, who has unlimited abilities as the maker of heaven and earth.

Psalms 121 "1 {A Song of Ascents.} I will lift up mine eyes unto the mountains: From whence shall my help come? 2 My help [cometh] from Jehovah, Who made heaven and earth."

Psalms 124 "8 Our help is in the name of Jehovah, Who made heaven and earth."


D - JEHOVAH MADE WOMAN FROM MAN AS A HELP MEET IN THE GARDEN

genesis 2 "21 And Jehovah God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and he slept; and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof: 22 and the rib, which Jehovah God had taken from the man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man. 23 And the man said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. 24 Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. 25 And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed."

COMMENTS: We are not told whether Jehovah told Adam what was in store, but He caused a deep sleep to fall upon him, then took a rib to form the woman and closed up the flesh. Jehovah brought Eve before Adam, who referred to her as "bone of my bone, and flesh of my flesh," and said she would be called woman because she was taken out of man. Here in chapter 2, the directive is given that a man shall leave his father and mother, and shall keep his wife with him as they shall be one flesh. Adam and Eve were both naked in the garden of Eden, and they had no reason to be ashamed. In the gospel of Mark, when a question about divorce was put before Jesus, he indicated that man has deviated from the standard that had been set (in the beginning), as he answered them by application from this passage in Genesis.

Mark 10 "2 And there came unto him Pharisees, and asked him, Is it lawful for a man to put away [his] wife? trying him. 3 And he answered and said unto them, What did Moses command you? 4 And they said, Moses suffered to write a bill of divorcement, and to put her away. 5 But Jesus said unto them, For your hardness of heart he wrote you this commandment. 6 But from the beginning of the creation, Male and female made he them. 7 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife; 8 and the two shall become one flesh: so that they are no more two, but one flesh. 9 What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder."

Genesis chapter 1 and chapter 5 contain some interesting word choices such as: "image" of God; and male and female and called "their" name "Adam."

Genesis 1 "27 And God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them."

Genesis 5 "1 This is the book of the generations of Adam. In the day that God created man, in the likeness of God made he him; 2 male and female created he them, and blessed them, and called their name Adam, in the day when they were created."


E - ACTING ON THE TEMPTATION BY SATAN BROUGHT SIN TO ALL MANKIND

Genesis 3 "1 Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which Jehovah God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of any tree of the garden? 2 And the woman said unto the serpent, Of the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat: 3 but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die. 4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: 5 for God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as God, knowing good and evil. 6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat; and she gave also unto her husband with her, and he did eat."

COMMENTS: The first man and woman were both made in the image of God, and they shared in the failure to resist the temptation by Satan as they accepted the contradictory words of the serpent, and disobeyed Jehovah. Some passages that appear in series in Scripture do not actually represent chronological order. When Jehovah gave the command of prohibition about the fruit of the tree to Adam, the creation of Eve was described in verses that followed. But When the serpent questioned Eve, there is no indication that she said anything to Adam before she responded with the words , "of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die." The command Jehovah had given to Adam did not include the restriction about not touching the fruit.

After Christ had become the perfect sacrifice for sin by His death, burial, and resurrection: Paul, James, and John gave further instruction for Christians in their letters, about the wiles of Satan. There are also very important words about the need to ask forgiveness from God when we have fallen into sin, and to pray for strength to avoid returning to sin that has been forgiven. The temptation to sin is inherent within all people in every generation, as descendants of Adam and Eve. But, praise God, those who believe in Christ can be assured that if we confess our sin, God will be faithful and jus to forgive and cleanse away the sin by His mercy and grace!

2 Corinthians 2"9 For to this end also did I write, that I might know the proof of you, whether ye are obedient in all things. 10 But to whom ye forgive anything, I [forgive] also: for what I also have forgiven, if I have forgiven anything, for your sakes [have I forgiven it] in the presence of Christ; 11 that no advantage may be gained over us by Satan: for we are not ignorant of his devices."

2 Corinthians 11 "2 For I am jealous over you with a godly jealousy: for I espoused you to one husband, that I might present you [as] a pure virgin to Christ. 3 But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve in his craftiness, your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity and the purity that is toward Christ."

James 1 "13 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God; for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempteth no man: 14 but each man is tempted, when he is drawn away by his own lust, and enticed. 15 Then the lust, when it hath conceived, beareth sin: and the sin, when it is fullgrown, bringeth forth death."

1 John 1 "5 And this is the message which we have heard from him and announce unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. 6 If we say that we have fellowship with him and walk in the darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: 7 but if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanseth us from all sin. 8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us."


F - ADAM AND EVE CHANGED THE CLOSE RELATIONSHIP MANKIND HAD WITH JEHOVAH

Genesis 3 "7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig-leaves together, and made themselves aprons. 8 And they heard the voice of Jehovah God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of Jehovah God amongst the trees of the garden. 9 And Jehovah God called unto the man, and said unto him, Where art thou? 10 And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself. 11 And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat? 12 And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat. 13 And Jehovah God said unto the woman, What is this thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat. 14 And Jehovah God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, cursed art thou above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life: 15 and I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed: he shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel."

COMMENTS: After the man and woman ate the forbidden fruit, they seemed surprised and uncomfortable upon being aware that they were naked. They made coverings for their bodies, and they tried to stay out of sight when they heard the voice of Jehovah God when He was walking in the garden. Their thought processes were now changed by knowing both good and evil, and they made the first attempt by mankind to hide their evil deed from the all-knowing God. Such futile attempts persist throughout all generations of mankind to one degree or another. David wrote about the futility of trying to hide anything at all from God, as expressed below in part of one of his Psalms.

Psalms 139 "1 {For the Chief Musician. A Psalm of David.} O Jehovah, thou hast searched me, and known [me]. 2 Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising; Thou understandest my thought afar off. 3 Thou searchest out my path and my lying down, And art acquainted with all my ways. 4 For there is not a word in my tongue, But, lo, O Jehovah, thou knowest it altogether. 5 Thou hast beset me behind and before, And laid thy hand upon me. 6 [Such] knowledge is too wonderful for me; It is high, I cannot attain unto it. 7 Whither shall I go from thy Spirit? Or whither shall I flee from thy presence? 8 If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: If I make my bed in Sheol, behold, thou art there. 9 If I take the wings of the morning, And dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; 10 Even there shall thy hand lead me, And thy right hand shall hold me. 11 If I say, Surely the darkness shall overwhelm me, And the light about me shall be night; 12 Even the darkness hideth not from thee, But the night shineth as the day: The darkness and the light are both alike [to thee]. 13 For thou didst form my inward parts: Thou didst cover me in my mother's womb. 14 I will give thanks unto thee; For I am fearfully and wonderfully made: Wonderful are thy works; And that my soul knoweth right well. 15 My frame was not hidden from thee, When I was made in secret, [And] curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. 16 Thine eyes did see mine unformed substance; And in thy book they were all written, [Even] the days that were ordained [for me], When as yet there was none of them. 17 How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! How great is the sum of them! 18 If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: When I awake, I am still with thee."

Jehovah God called out to the man and asked, where are you? This gave Adam the opportunity to answer, even though God did not really need to search for him. Adam had tried to hide because he had become aware of the existence of good and evil, and now was afraid because God had said "the day you eat of it you shall die." When Adam said he hid himself when he heard the voice of God because he was naked and afraid. Again, God already knew the answers to the questions about how Adam knew he was naked, and if Adam had eaten from the forbidden tree. Adam's answer involving Eve, and her answer involving the serpent is a progression to lead to the judgment by Jehovah God.

Jehovah did not ask any question of the serpent, and the serpent said nothing at all. The serpent apparently was there and heard Eve say "The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat." Jehovah began to speak to the serpent, "Because thou hast done this, cursed art thou above all cattle, and above every beast of the field." Jehovah put enmity between the serpent and the woman, and between the seed of the serpent and the seed of the woman. The statement "he shall bruise thy head, and thou shall bruise his heel," can be difficult to definitively explain through other Scripture. But there is perhaps some perspective that can be found in Scripture about what "seed" of the serpent itself may mean. If there are "sons of the devil" and "sons of God," there is definitely enmity between those offspring (or seed).

Matthew 3 "7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to his baptism, he said unto them, Ye offspring of vipers, who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?"

Matthew 23 "29 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye build the sepulchres of the prophets, and garnish the tombs of the righteous, 30 and say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we should not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets. 31 Wherefore ye witness to yourselves, that ye are sons of them that slew the prophets. 32 Fill ye up then the measure of your fathers. 33 Ye serpents, ye offspring of vipers, how shall ye escape the judgment of hell?"

John 8 "38 I speak the things which I have seen with [my] Father: and ye also do the things which ye heard from [your] father. 39 They answered and said unto him, Our father is Abraham. Jesus saith unto them, If ye were Abraham's children, ye would do the works of Abraham. 40 But now ye seek to kill me, a man that hath told you the truth, which I heard from God: this did not Abraham. 41 Ye do the works of your father. They said unto him, We were not born of fornication; we have one Father, [even] God. 42 Jesus said unto them, If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I came forth and am come from God; for neither have I come of myself, but he sent me. 43 Why do ye not understand my speech? [Even] because ye cannot hear my word. 44 Ye are of [your] father the devil, and the lusts of your father it is your will to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and standeth not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father thereof. 45 But because I say the truth, ye believe me not."

1 John 3 "7 [My] little children, let no man lead you astray: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous: 8 he that doeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. To this end was the Son of God manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil. 9 Whosoever is begotten of God doeth no sin, because his seed abideth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is begotten of God. 10 In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother."


G - JEHOVAH PRONOUNCED THE CONSEQUENCES OF SIN FOR MANKIND

Genesis 3 "16 Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy pain and thy conception; in pain thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee. 17 And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in toil shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; 18 thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field; 19 in the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return. 20 And the man called his wife's name Eve; because she was the mother of all living. 21 And Jehovah God made for Adam and for his wife coats of skins, and clothed them. 22 And Jehovah 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- 23 therefore Jehovah God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken. 24 So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden the Cherubim, and the flame of a sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life."

Genesis 4 "1 And the man knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man with [the help of] Jehovah. 2 And again she bare his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground."

COMMENTS: Jehovah had given judgment to the serpent, then began to speak again to the woman and to Adam. He told the woman she will have pain as she bears children, and her husband will rule over her. Because Adam had listened to the voice of his wife and had eaten of the tree against the command not to eat of it, Jehovah told him that the ground is now cursed and it will require hard work all the days of his life to have food from it. There will also be thorns and thistles from the ground that will require more hard work to get the herb of the field collected to make bread for food. This hard work will continue until the man returns to the ground; for he was taken out of it: for he is dust, and he shall return to dust. The man called his wife's name Eve because she is the mother of all living: and in the original language, the word Eve means life, which can have both positive and negative aspects due to the entrance of sin.

Jehovah God made coats of skins, and clothed the man and his wife, which replaced the coverings they had made for themselves. Jehovah said now the man and his wife have become as one of us by having the knowledge of good and evil. But we are not given the clear intent of the "us" in the wording, and I will not attempt to define the meaning. To prevent the man and his wife from eating from the tree of life and thus living forever, Jehovah God drove him out of the garden of Eden to till the ground from which he was taken. And He placed at the east of the garden of Eden the Cherubim, and the flame of a sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life. Again, it is not clear if this is symbolic of a never-ending impenetrable guard for the tree of life; or that Jehovah God would provide a different way to eternal life . After Eve had her first two sons, the conflict between good and evil became very evident with these men in their adult life. In our present day we have so much more Scripture to show that we have a trustworthy Savior in Christ Jesus, and the "seed" of the woman has indeed prepared the way to eternal life for those who accept that gift by faith. So, I close this Bible study with some additional Scripture passages.

Psalm 146 "1 Praise ye Jehovah. Praise Jehovah, O my soul. 2 While I live will I praise Jehovah: I will sing praises unto my God while I have any being. 3 Put not your trust in princes, Nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help. 4 His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; In that very day his thoughts perish."

John 3 "12 If I told you earthly things and ye believe not, how shall ye believe if I tell you heavenly things? 13 And no one hath ascended into heaven, but he that descended out of heaven, [even] the Son of man, who is in heaven. 14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up; 15 that whosoever believeth may in him have eternal life. 16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on him should not perish, but have eternal life. 17 For God sent not the Son into the world to judge the world; but that the world should be saved through him. 18 He that believeth on him is not judged: he that believeth not hath been judged already, because he hath not believed on the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19 And this is the judgment, that the light is come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the light; for their works were evil."

1 Corinthians 15 "41 There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars; for one star differeth from another star in glory. 42 So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption: 43 it is sown in dishonor; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised in power: 44 it is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual [body]. 45 So also it is written, The first man Adam became a living soul. The last Adam [became] a life-giving spirit. 46 Howbeit that is not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; then that which is spiritual. 47 The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is of heaven. 48 As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy: and as is the heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly. 49 And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly. 50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption."

Revelation 12 "7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels [going forth] to war with the dragon; and the dragon warred and his angels; 8 And they prevailed not, neither was their place found any more in heaven. 9 And the great dragon was cast down, the old serpent, he that is called the Devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world; he was cast down to the earth, and his angels were cast down with him. 10 And I heard a great voice in heaven, saying, Now is come the salvation, and the power, and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, who accuseth them before our God day and night. 11 And they overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb, and because of the word of their testimony; and they loved not their life even unto death. 12 Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe for the earth and for the sea: because the devil is gone down unto you, having great wrath, knowing that he hath but a short time."

--- REFLECTIONS IN PRAYER ---

Jehovah God, I ask that you guard my heart from doubting your Holy Word, and teach me to know your ways as the true pathway to daily living and to life eternal. Thank you for providing the Holy Spirit to help me in those times of difficult trials or tests that are common to man. I believe the account of the six days when all things were created by Jehovah God and there is nothing that was not created by you. You, Jehovah, rested after those works on the seventh day, blessed them and sanctified that day. Help me to be aware of the reality that as the serpent beguiled Eve in his craftiness, my mind could be corrupted from the simplicity and the purity that is toward Christ. I want to avoid any doubts that may be of the type that Satan offered in the garden of Eden. And I know because of my inherent sin nature, I must guard against my own lust that can be very subtle at the beginning. I offer all my praise, worship, and glory to Jehovah God who sought me and gave me a new pathway. Hallelujah, Amen.

Published 5 June 2020


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Genesis 1 "26 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth. 27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. 28 And God blessed them, and God said to them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth. 29 And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is on the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat. 30 And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creeps on the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so. 31 And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day."

COMMENTS: The creation of mankind as both male and female was the act of God to create in his own image those who would have dominion over all the earth and all other living creatures. The sixth day was the final one in the process of creation, and Genesis chapter 2 provides additional detail about the significant difference that mankind has above all other living things in God's creation.


B - THE BREATH OF LIFE FROM GOD MADE MAN A LIVING SOUL

Genesis 2 "1 Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. 2 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. 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. 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, 5 And every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and every herb of the field before it grew: for the LORD God had not caused it to rain on the earth, and there was not a man to till the ground. 6 But there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of 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."

COMMENTS: God formed man from the "dust" of the earth which contained essential elements which he intricately designed with numerous details; and then God breathed the breath of life into man which provided a living soul to be within that physical body. These foundational facts are important as they are the base point of the continual unfolding of the plans of the LORD God for mankind until God's purposes are completed. .


C - THE GARDEN OF EDEN WAS INTENTIONALLY PLANTED BY THE LORD GOD

Genesis 2 "8 And the LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed. 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 middle of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil. 10 And a river went out of Eden to water the garden; and from there it was parted, and became into four heads. 11 The name of the first is Pison: that is it which compasses the whole land of Havilah, where there is gold; 12 And the gold of that land is good: there is bdellium and the onyx stone. 13 And the name of the second river is Gihon: the same is it that compasses the whole land of Ethiopia. 14 And the name of the third river is Hiddekel: that is it which goes toward the east of Assyria. And the fourth river is Euphrates."

COMMENTS: The Garden of Eden was specially planted by the LORD God and he placed there the man he had formed. This described location had very pleasant appearing surroundings and all the source of nourishment man would need. Two unique trees were also located there: the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. The river system was geographically described in terms of rivers that have been recognized since the history after the great flood in the days of Noah, wherein only eight people survived in the ark prepared by faith. The precious metal of gold was present in Eden and it has continued to be valuable throughout history. Bdellium is a fragrant resin related to myrrh and used in perfumes, which is produced by a number of different trees. Onyx stone is a semiprecious variety of agate with different colors in layers which can be made into exquisitely beautiful jewelry.


D - THE FRUIT OF THE TREE OF THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOOD AND EVIL WAS FORBIDDEN

Genesis 3 "1Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said to the woman, Yes, has God said, You shall not eat of every tree of the garden? 2 And the woman said to the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: 3 But of the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, God has said, You shall not eat of it, neither shall you touch it, lest you die. 4 And the serpent said to the woman, You shall not surely die: 5 For God does know that in the day you eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and you shall be as gods, knowing good and evil. 6 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 to her husband with her; and he did eat. 7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons. 8 And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden. 9 And the LORD God called to Adam, and said to him, Where are you? 10 And he said, I heard your voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself. 11 And he said, Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded you that you should not eat? 12 And the man said, The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat. 13 And the LORD God said to the woman, What is this that you have done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat. 14 And the LORD God said to the serpent, Because you have done this, you are cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; on your belly shall you go, and dust shall you eat all the days of your life: 15 And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; it shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel. 16 To the woman he said, I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception; in sorrow you shall bring forth children; and your desire shall be to your husband, and he shall rule over you. 17 And to Adam he said, Because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten of the tree, of which I commanded you, saying, You shall not eat of it: cursed is the ground for your sake; in sorrow shall you eat of it all the days of your life; 18 Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to you; and you shall eat the herb of the field; 19 In the sweat of your face shall you eat bread, till you return to the ground; for out of it were you taken: for dust you are, and to dust shall you return. 20 And Adam called his wife's name Eve; because she was the mother of all living."

COMMENTS: The above passage is stated in very simple terms that describe the lowly yet dangerous state of the "serpent" which was the embodiment of the devil tempting Eve to question the truth of God's word. The LORD described the patterns of life and death that were now set in motion for mankind; and there would also be a continual struggle for people to believe and obey the Word of God, in the midst of many who would instead only follow the desires of the flesh. Verses 14 and 15 above describe a very common interaction for people and lowly serpents that would be known around the world; but there is a deeper meaning about a deadly serpent that could not be understood until the LORD revealed more truth by those he inspired to write additional Scripture.


E - MARY'S HUSBAND JOSEPH WAS IN THE LINE OF KINGS FROM DAVID

Matthew 1 "1 The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham. 2 Abraham begat Isaac; and Isaac begat Jacob; and Jacob begat Judas and his brothers; 3 And Judas begat Phares and Zara of Thamar; and Phares begat Esrom; and Esrom begat Aram; 4 And Aram begat Aminadab; and Aminadab begat Naasson; and Naasson begat Salmon; 5 And Salmon begat Booz of Rachab; and Booz begat Obed of Ruth; and Obed begat Jesse; 6 And Jesse begat David the king; and David the king begat Solomon of her that had been the wife of Urias; 7 And Solomon begat Roboam; and Roboam begat Abia; and Abia begat Asa; 8 And Asa begat Josaphat; and Josaphat begat Joram; and Joram begat Ozias; 9 And Ozias begat Joatham; and Joatham begat Achaz; and Achaz begat Ezekias; 10 And Ezekias begat Manasses; and Manasses begat Amon; and Amon begat Josias; 11 And Josias begat Jechonias and his brothers, about the time they were carried away to Babylon: 12 And after they were brought to Babylon, Jechonias begat Salathiel; and Salathiel begat Zorobabel; 13 And Zorobabel begat Abiud; and Abiud begat Eliakim; and Eliakim begat Azor; 14 And Azor begat Sadoc; and Sadoc begat Achim; and Achim begat Eliud; 15 And Eliud begat Eleazar; and Eleazar begat Matthan; and Matthan begat Jacob; 16 And Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ. 17 So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations; and from David until the carrying away into Babylon are fourteen generations; and from the carrying away into Babylon to Christ are fourteen generations. 18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. 19 Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privately. 20 But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the LORD appeared to him in a dream, saying, Joseph, you son of David, fear not to take to you Mary your wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. 21 And she shall bring forth a son, and you shall call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. 22 Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, 23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. 24 Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took to him his wife: 25 And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS."

COMMENTS: This section gives the genealogy in Matthew through the kings who reigned after David; and continues down to Joseph, identified as the husband of Mary. But it clearly states, beginning in verse 18 that the conception of Christ Jesus by the Holy Spirit came before the betrothed couple came together. After Joseph heard that Mary was pregnant, and angel of the LORD appeared to him in a dream, addressed Joseph as a son of David, and told him that which was conceived in her was of the Holy Ghost. Joseph was instructed to give him the name Jesus because he shall save his people from their sins. The prophet referenced in verse 22 above is Isaiah, and the excerpt is from chapter 7 of his book. Extra emphasis is given that Jesus will save people from their sin because he is called Emanuel, which means "God with us." Joseph awoke and did as the angel of the Lord had instructed. He took Mary as his wife, but they did not have sexual relations until she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS.


F - MARY HAD A MESSAGE FROM GOD ABOUT THE MIRACULOUS CONCEPTION OF JESUS WITHIN HER WOMB

Luke 1 "26 And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, 27 To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin's name was Mary. 28 And the angel came in to her, and said, Hail, you that are highly favored, the Lord is with you: blessed are you among women. 29 And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be. 30 And the angel said to her, Fear not, Mary: for you have found favor with God. 31 And, behold, you shall conceive in your womb, and bring forth a son, and shall call his name JESUS. 32 He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give to him the throne of his father David: 33 And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end. 34 Then said Mary to the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? 35 And the angel answered and said to her, The Holy Ghost shall come on you, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow you: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of you shall be called the Son of God. 36 And, behold, your cousin Elisabeth, she has also conceived a son in her old age: and this is the sixth month with her, who was called barren. 37 For with God nothing shall be impossible. 38 And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it to me according to your word. And the angel departed from her."

Isaiah 9 "6 For to us a child is born, to us a son is given: and the government shall be on his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. 7 Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, on the throne of David, and on his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from now on even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this."

Galatians 4 "4 But when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, 5 To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons. 6 And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father. 7 Why you are no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ."

Hebrews 2 "14 For as much then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; 15 And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. 16 For truly he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham. 17 Why in all things it behooved him to be made like to his brothers, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. 18 For in that he himself has suffered being tempted, he is able to succor them that are tempted."

COMMENTS: In the above passage from Luke, it is stated twice that Mary was a virgin, and the angel Gabriel told her she would conceive in her womb and give birth to a son, and give him the name JESUS and he shall: (1) be called the Son of the Highest, (2) the Lord God shall give to him the throne of his father David (his ancestor through Mary), (3) he shall reign over the house of Jacob (Israel) forever, and (4) of his kingdom there shall be no end! Mary did not hesitate to say to Gabriel that she had never "known" a man, so how could she conceive within her womb. After she heard the explanation of miraculous conception by the Holy Spirit, Mary willingly submitted as she called herself the handmaid of the LORD. This was as the prophesy in Isaiah chapter 9 had predicted, and the last sentence of that passage is firmly stated, "The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this."

The Apostle Paul told the Galatians in his letter that when the "fullness of time" had come, God sent his Son made of a woman and made under the Law to redeem those who were under the law of God. Those who are redeemed have received the adoption to become sons of God, and God has sent forth the Spirit of his Son into the heart of the redeemed so they are now heirs of God through Christ. The passage from Hebrews also states that as the children have flesh and blood, Christ Jesus also likewise took upon himself a body; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; And deliver those who were subject to bondage all their lives through the fearful anticipation of death and the grave. Jesus didn't come as an angel, but he took upon himself the ancestral line of Abraham. In all things it was requisite and appropriate for him to be made in likeness to his brothers. He might then be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God as he made reconciliation for the sins of the people. We can relate to "God with us" as he gives us comfort in times of difficulty and distress because we know he was also tempted while he was in physical form among mankind that he had created in the image of God.


G - NO KING AFTER DAVID WAS IN THE LINE TO CHRIST

Luke 3 "21 Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Jesus also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened, 22 And the Holy Ghost descended in a bodily shape like a dove on him, and a voice came from heaven, which said, You are my beloved Son; in you I am well pleased. 23 And Jesus himself began to be about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph, which was the son of Heli, 24 Which was the son of Matthat, which was the son of Levi, which was the son of Melchi, which was the son of Janna, which was the son of Joseph, 25 Which was the son of Mattathias, which was the son of Amos, which was the son of Naum, which was the son of Esli, which was the son of Nagge, 26 Which was the son of Maath, which was the son of Mattathias, which was the son of Semei, which was the son of Joseph, which was the son of Juda, 27 Which was the son of Joanna, which was the son of Rhesa, which was the son of Zorobabel, which was the son of Salathiel, which was the son of Neri, 28 Which was the son of Melchi, which was the son of Addi, which was the son of Cosam, which was the son of Elmodam, which was the son of Er, 29 Which was the son of Jose, which was the son of Eliezer, which was the son of Jorim, which was the son of Matthat, which was the son of Levi, 30 Which was the son of Simeon, which was the son of Juda, which was the son of Joseph, which was the son of Jonan, which was the son of Eliakim, 31 Which was the son of Melea, which was the son of Menan, which was the son of Mattatha, which was the son of Nathan, which was the son of David,"

COMMENTS: The genealogy in the above passage was through the line after David's son Nathan, not his son Solomon. Luke did not directly indicate this as the genealogy tracing back from the father of Mary, but The genealogy for Joseph is clearly presented in Matthew to be through David and Solomon. Thus the seed of the woman was through the line of David and his son Nathan, with conception brought about by the Holy Ghost. The supernatural power of God to destroy death and the grave as man's final end can never be held back by any means in the natural or spiritual realm.


H - GOD DEFEATS THE DECEPTION OF SATAN BY OFFERING RESURRECTION TO ETERNAL LIFE

Luke 20 "27 Then came to him certain of the Sadducees, which deny that there is any resurrection; and they asked him, 28 Saying, Master, Moses wrote to us, If any man's brother die, having a wife, and he die without children, that his brother should take his wife, and raise up seed to his brother. 29 There were therefore seven brothers: and the first took a wife, and died without children. 30 And the second took her to wife, and he died childless. 31 And the third took her; and in like manner the seven also: and they left no children, and died. 32 Last of all the woman died also. 33 Therefore in the resurrection whose wife of them is she? for seven had her to wife. 34 And Jesus answering said to them, The children of this world marry, and are given in marriage: 35 But they which shall be accounted worthy to obtain that world, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry, nor are given in marriage: 36 Neither can they die any more: for they are equal to the angels; and are the children of God, being the children of the resurrection. 37 Now that the dead are raised, even Moses showed at the bush, when he calls the Lord the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. 38 For he is not a God of the dead, but of the living: for all live to him."

John 11 "21 Then said Martha to Jesus, Lord, if you had been here, my brother had not died. 22 But I know, that even now, whatever you will ask of God, God will give it you. 23 Jesus said to her, Your brother shall rise again. 24 Martha said to him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day. 25 Jesus said to her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believes in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: 26 And whoever lives and believes in me shall never die. Believe you this? 27 She said to him, Yes, Lord: I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world."

1 Corinthians 15 "50 Now this I say, brothers, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither does corruption inherit incorruption. 51 Behold, I show you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, 52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 54 So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. 55 O death, where is your sting? O grave, where is your victory? 56 The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God, which gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ."

COMMENTS: What a wonderful truth as Jesus told the Sadducees that Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are alive because God is a God of the living. Those who have resurrection from the dead can never die; they are equal to the angels and are children of God, being the children of resurrection. Before Jesus called Lazarus out from the tomb, he said to Martha, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believes in me, though he was dead, yet shall he live: And whoever lives and believes in me shall never die. When asked if she believed that, Martha said Yes, Lord, I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world. And Paul wrote in his letter to the believers in the church at Corinth of the assurance which is in Christ. The mortal body must be changed to immortal, and it is a mystery that not all believers will "sleep:" but all will be changed at the last trumpet sound when the dead are raised. Then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory: oh death where is your sting? Oh grave, where is your victory? The law convicts all people of sin because none can keep the whole law, and the consequential sting is death. However, we can give thanks and praise to God, for the victory we have over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ!


I - JESUS COMPLETED HIS WORK AND RETURNED TO THE FATHER IN HEAVEN

John 17 "1 These words spoke Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify your Son, that your Son also may glorify you: 2 As you have given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as you have given him. 3 And this is life eternal, that they might know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. 4 I have glorified you on the earth: I have finished the work which you gave me to do. 5 And now, O Father, glorify you me with your own self with the glory which I had with you before the world was."

1 Peter 1 "1 Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the strangers scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, 2 Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, to obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace to you, and peace, be multiplied. 3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy has begotten us again to a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fades not away, reserved in heaven for you, 5 Who are kept by the power of God through faith to salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 6 Wherein you greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, you are in heaviness through manifold temptations: 7 That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perishes, though it be tried with fire, might be found to praise and honor and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: 8 Whom having not seen, you love; in whom, though now you see him not, yet believing, you rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: 9 Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls."

COMMENTS: John 17 has a precious prayer that believers have the privilege to read and contemplate as the Son of God prayed to God the Father about the glory related to the work on earth that was nearing the end point for Christ. When the Son would be glorified, then the Father also would be glorified. When Christ Jesus would come forth from the grave in resurrection he would give eternal life to as many as the Father has given him. That gift of life eternal is to know God the Father, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom the Father has sent. When Christ returned to God the Father they would have the glory in heaven as one God which has forever been true even before the world existed.

In his first letter, Peter opened by declaring himself to be an apostle of Jesus Christ, and addressed his intended readers as the strangers scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia. In a sense all Christians are strangers in this present world because our citizenship is in heaven. Christians are elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, to obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ. This identification of the grace from our triune God is the source of peace in our souls that is past our full comprehension while we continue our journey here on earth. The resurrection of Christ from the dead gives us that firm hope of eternal life according to the abundant mercy of God: and we know we shall have an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that cannot fade away, reserved in heaven for those who are kept by the power of God through faith to salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. This is the joy we must continually return to with praise to our God, even though in this life we will have various trials and temptations. We can love our God who is not presently seen in the flesh; and by believing, we can rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory to our LORD. Peter said our faith is much more precious than gold which perishes; because faith will bring praise, honor, and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: when we receive the end of our faith, even the salvation of our souls!

--- REFLECTIONS IN PRAYER ---

LORD, I thank you that though Satan seemed to be successful in his deception in the Garden of Eden, your grace and mercy provided for so many people over the centuries to overcome that first death, with the sure hope of eternal life provided by the God of the living as you clearly stated about Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Your eternal plans to have Emanuel to be born of a virgin as the "seed of the woman" could not be thwarted by any amount of determined efforts of Satan. We can now be more aware of why our triune God had said at the beginning "let us make man in our image." An anticipated resurrection was even known by Martha when her brother had died; but when you posed questions she realized and proclaimed that she believed that you are the Christ, the Son of God. LORD, it is according to your abundant mercy that the resurrection of Christ from the dead gives us that firm hope of our inheritance of eternal life; and the Holy Spirit is now the comforter Christ Jesus sent after ascending to the Father in heaven. While we have our journey here on earth, we believe we are kept by the power of our God through faith to salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. Help me Lord, to remember that your power can overcome all trials and temptations I may experience until you call me home. My Savior and Lord, You provide the joy of present salvation of my soul; so may I remember to give praise, honor, and glory to your name. Hallelujah, Amen.

Published 2019