When we read Genesis chapter 2, there are a number of things that are very puzzling:
1. First, in Genesis 2:1-3, we read that God rested on the seventh day. Did God rest because He was tired? It cannot be because we know that God will never be tired (Isaiah 40:28). So why did He rest?
2. Second, why was the 7th day stated in Genesis Chapter 2 and not in Genesis Chapter 1. Why was the account of creation repeated in Genesis Chapter 2.
3. Third, why is it written that there was no plants and there was no man to till the ground when it was already stated in Genesis 1:11-13 that God made the plants on the third day and in Genesis 1:26-28 that God made mankind on the 6th day. It seems like there are some repetitions.
4. Why is it that Eve was not created at the same time and immediately after Adam was created? Why did God not make Eve soon after He said He will make a suitable companion for Adam (Genesis 2:18) and instead God brought the animals to Adam (Genesis 2:19)? Certainly God knew that only a female human being would make a suitable companion. Why was there a delay? Why was Eve not made from dust, just like Adam?
5. Why was there a verse that said “That is why a man leaves his father and mother….. “(Genesis 1:24)? What is the significance of this verse?
In this blog post, we are going to search the scriptures to find the answers to the above questions. After you have found all the answers, you will discover that Genesis Chapter 2 has a central theme. So, let’s begin with the search for each of the questions:
Q1- Why did God rest?
We shall search the answer base on the context of Genesis chapter 2:1-3 and the original text (Hebrew) meaning for rest:
1.The context of Genesis 2:1-3
Genesis 2:1-3 is about the 7th day from the start of creation. We have learned in Genesis 1 that after God had created Adam and Eve on the 6th day, God blessed them to be the master of all His creation. It was like a father holding his newborn child, full of joy and pride and wanting his child to inherit the kingdom he had built.
If you are a parent, you will remember the time you had your newborn baby. The first thing you (and even your family members, relatives and close friends) would do was to take leave from your jobs and enjoy your newborn baby.
While you spend time with your baby, what would you be doing? You will likely be feeding him, cleaning him, clothing him, talking to him and doing everything to make him comfortable. You will cuddle and kiss him.
Likewise God stopped work to enjoy the time with Adam and Eve. In God’s presence, Adam and Eve were blessed. In other words, we can imagine that the 7th day was a joyous day where Adam and Eve was enjoying all that God lavished on them, all His provision and the kingdom that God had created for them. It pleased God greatly to see Adam and Eve celebrating and resting in His perfect love.
2. The original Hebrew meaning of “rest“
Next, let’s understand it from the original Hebrew meaning of “rest“. There are two main Hebrew words for the word “rest” in the Bible. The first is shabbat which means to stop working. That is the root word that transate to the English word Sabbath day.
The other Hebrew word for rest used in the Hebrew Scriptures is nuakh. This means to “dwell” or “settle.” It refers to spending time with a loved one. In this article by BibleProject, the author provides the following two good examples to explain nuakh —it is the type of rest like sitting in front of a fire with a loved one or unpacking a suitcase to stay at grandma’s house for the holidays.
Hence, this confirms our analysis in paragraph 1 above, that on the 7th day, God rested from work (shabbat), and then He dwelt (nuakh) and enjoyed the time with Adam and Eve. It was not because God was tired. Rather, God set apart the 7th day, stopped His work for the universe and enjoyed the time with Adam and Eve.
Isn’t it so awesome? That Almighty God, Creator of heavens and earth should stop work to enjoy the time with mankind?
Q2 -Why was the 7th day not stated in Genesis Chapter 1?
Next, we are going to analyse why Genesis Chapter 1 ends on the 6th day? If you were to pick up any book, you will discover that each chapter of any book convey a specific message or story or theme. So it is logical or common sense to conclude that the contents within Genesis chapter 2 must together convey a common message or has a common theme. So, let’s look at the broad categories of verses in Genesis chapter 2:
1. Verse 4 to 7 – was a introduction that tells us the upcoming verses was a history of the generations of mankind and about creation.
2. Verse 8-14 – God planted the garden of Eden for Adam and Eve. It was a home created for them.
3. Verse 18 – 24 – God was writing the love story of Adam and Eve. He gave Adam the mission to cultivate the garden and cause him to see the need for a campanion.
You will notice that all the verses from Genesis 2:4 to Genesis 2:25 centered around Adam and Eve.
Effectively, verse 8-14 is about God planting the garden of Eden which was a matrimony home for Adam and Eve. The gold, resin and onyx were like wedding gifts and dowry.
Verse 18 -20 was actually about how the LORD prepared Adam to see his need for a companion so that when Eve entered his life, he would love and cherish her.
In other words, we can see that chapter 2 is all about God creating a home for Adam, giving him the mission and authority as he inherit the kingdom God created for him, preparing him to be ready to receive and love his bride and giving him the instruction for a good marriage.
Base on this, we can now go back to Genesis 2:1-3 and reinforce our analysis above that God stopped work on the 7th day to spend time with Adam and Eve.
The fact that the 7th day where God rested to spend time with Adam and Eve was placed in chapter 2 where the theme was about God creating a home and preparing Adam to receive Eve, we can believe that the scripture is telling us that the secret to a blessed marriage and family begins with the couple resting in God’s presence, receiving His perfect love.
This explains why the 7th day was not in chapter 1 but in chapter 2 of Genesis.
Q3 – Why is it written that there was no plants and there was no man to till the ground?
Why is it written that there was no plants and there was no man to till the ground when it was already stated in Genesis 1:11-13 that God made the plants on the third day and in Genesis 1:26-28 that God made mankind on the 6th day. It seems like there are some repetitions.
Having found the answer to Q1 and Q2, we can easily answer this question. Chapter 1 provides a macro view of God’s creation whereas chapter 2 provided a micro perspective how God wrote the life stories of mankind.
In Genesis 1:11-13, God spoke and the plants came into existence. In Genesis 2:8-9, the scriptures specifically mentioned God planted a garden in this huge earth. God intricately planned and designed what kind of plants are to be in what position in the garden. God carefully planned the rivers that watered the garden.
In Genesis 2:5, it is written that there were no man to till the ground. This verse was referring to a time before Adam was created (which was in verse 7 of Genesis 2).
Take note that although Adam was created in Genesis 2:7, it was stated in Genesis 2:8 that God Himself planted the garden of Eden. In other words, Adam was not created to design and plan what plants to be in the garden. He was not required to even till the ground! God already planted the trees with fruits that were pleasant to the sight and good for food. Adam’s job was only to cultivate and keep the garden.
Genesis chapter 2 even tell us that God had even planned the calling, career and mission for Adam. In Genesis 1:26-28, we read that God created mankind in His image and blessed them to be master of all His creation. However, in chapter 2 of Genesis, we learned that man was created from dust. Though man was created from dust, God loved Adam so much that whatever Adam named the living creature, that was the name of that creature. God gave Adam the approval, favour and authority.
Therefore, we can conclude that it is not a repetition but a micro perspective that show us how much God cares for the individual’s life though He is the Supreme God of the universe!
Q4 – Why is it that Eve was not created at the same time or immediately after Adam was created? Why was Eve not made from dust but from Adam’s rib?
Why did God not make Eve soon after He said He will make a suitable companion for Adam (Genesis 2:18) and instead God brought the animals to Adam (Genesis 2:19)? Certainly God knew that only a female human being would make a suitable companion. Why was there a delay? Why was Eve not made from dust, just like Adam?
There is a reason why there was a delay in creating Eve. First, God had to establish Adam’s position, authority, inheritance and mission. With this, he will have the respect of his wife. God created woman such that when she is full of admiration and respect for a man, she will naturally fall in love with him.
Men, on the other hand, is attracted to a woman’s beauty. There will always be many beautiful women everywhere. So, for a good marriage, the man had to be able to love and cherish the woman he married. So, the second reason for the delay is that God had to cause Adam to realise that he was in need of a human companion.
Adam had to discover that even the position, authority, career and animal friends he had could not meet his needs. When he realised this, he would be able to love and cherish the woman when God finally brought her into his life.
We also read that Eve was not made from dust but from Adam’s rib. The LORD has a reason for this. His intention was for Adam to love Eve as himself. It is never God’s plan for women to be treated like dirt. Throughout history, many women had been abused and even forced into prostitution, treated like a common commodity. All these are the works of the devil. All these hurt God a lot. It is for this reason, when Jesus walked on earth, He came to heal the broken-hearted, to reach out to the Samaritan woman who has had 5 husbands and who was with a man that was not her husband.
Q5 -Why was there a verse that said “That is why a man leaves his father and mother….. “(Genesis 1:24)? What is the significance of this verse?
Genesis 1:24 is an instruction for a good marriage. Every man has to rise up to love, cherish, provide and be responsible for his wife and children. God has created the woman to be a helper to her husband. The two together is sufficient to overcome the challenges in life. If a man remained reliant on his parents, he will not learn to take his position as the head of the family to love and protect his wife and children. It may cause the wife to lose respect for him. For a woman to love a man, she must be able to respect the man.
The union of a man and a woman in love, together with the presence of God, is strong enough to overcome any kind of challenges in life. The involvement of more parties would merely complicates things. It is for this reason that Genesis 1:24 was given as an instruction for a good marriage.
The theme of Genesis chapter 2
From the above analysis, we can conclude that while Genesis chapter 1 gave a macro perspective of God’s creation of the universe, Genesis chapter 2 gave a micro perspective of God’s creation of a matrimony home, a marriage, a family and a wedding day for Adam and Eve. This tell us how awesome our God is. Though He is the creator of this great universe, He cares for our lives. He would stop work to spend time with us. He writes our love stories. Hence, the verses of Genesis chapter 2 can be interpreted as follows:
|Verse 1 to 3||God rested on the 7th day||A blessed marriage, filled with blessings from God in every area of our lives begin with us resting in God’s perfect love.|
|Verse 4||Introduction to say that upcoming verses are an account of creation||Account of creation starts here|
|Verse 5-6||There was no plants nor rain. No man to tilt the ground.||God did not create man to till the ground.|
|Verse 7||Adam was created.||Adam was created from the dust of the ground.|
|Verse 8-9||God planted the garden of Eden.||Matrimony home|
|Verse 10-14||God caused the rivers to water the garden of Eden and the land around it. Gold, aromatic resin and onyx stones were in Havilah.||The provisions, dowry and wedding gifts.|
|Verse 15||Adam given the mission to manage the garden of Eden.||Adam’s career and mission.|
|Verse 16-17||Instruction to Adam what he could eat and what not to eat.||Instruction for provision and Protection.|
|Verse 18-20||God said He will make a companion for Adam. God brought the animals to Adam for him to name them.||God preparing Adam to be ready to love and cherish Eve. Adam was given authority name the living creatures. God was establishing his position, giving him the inheritance of the kingdom God created.|
|Verse 21 – 22||God created Eve from Adam’s rib||Eve, the bride was created to be loved and cherished.|
|Verse 23||Adam was overjoyed to see Eve.||The love story began.|
|Verse 24||A man shall leave his parents and be united to his wife.||Instruction for good marriage.|
|Verse 25||Man and woman was naked but not ashamed.||They had not had the knowledge of good and evil to know nakedness.|
In the 25 verses of Genesis chapter 2, we can also see God’s blessings for Adam and Eve (mankind) in every area:
1. Favour of God, rest, joy, peace, protection ( Genesis 2:1-3)
2. Life and health (Genesis 2:7)
3. Provision, home (shelter), healing, food, abundance and luxurious living that satisfies the desires of our eyes and mouth (Genesis 2:8-9)
5. Mission and career (Genesis 2:15)
6. Authority, position and power (Genesis 2:19-20)
7. Love, family and companionship (Genesis 2:18-25)
Can you see how much God cares for you?
My child, can you see how the LORD God intricately planned everything, strategically, for mankind, not only with food and material provisions but also in the area of love, family, companionship, power, authority, career, health… in fact, it is in every area of our life. Every plan God has for us is to bless us. When Adam and Eve sinned and mankind is separated from God’s presence, God’s love for us has never changed. God demonstrated His love by sending His one and only beloved Son to die for us so that we can be restored back into His presence:
God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him.This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins. 1 John 4:9-10
Yet now he has reconciled you to himself through the death of Christ in his physical body. As a result, he has brought you into his own presence, and you are holy and blameless as you stand before him without a single fault. Colossians 1:22
No one has ever seen God, except the Son of God, Jesus. When Jesus came, He revealed to us that God is our heavenly Father (John 1:18, Matthew 6:9-13, John 10:30, Luke 11:13) who loves us immensely.
My child, if someone rejects you, or that they find that you are not good enough, not beautiful enough, not smart enough, not lovable enough, whatever people may criticise you… never, never let those words affect you. Those are the lies of the devil.
You are so precious to God, you are perfectly and wonderfully made. You are a child of the God Most High, the Creator of this universe, the King of kings. You are a princess/prince. This is the truth.
If today, you feel alone in this world, know for sure that your heavenly Father is always waiting for you to spend time with HIm. My prayer for the believer reading this article is that the Holy Spirit will reveal to you how much you are treasured and loved by our LORD God. You are everything to Him.
If you are not a believer, you can say the following prayer to receive Jesus into your life as you Savior. When you believe in Jesus, you become a child of God You are made right with God and all curses are broken. You are no longer under the power of sin. You have the Holy Spirit of God who will lead and enable you to live a victorious life, to receive all the blessed life of Adam and Eve described in Genesis 2:
Dear Lord Jesus, thank you for taking my place to die on the cross for my sins so that I can be set free from sin and be restored back to God, to live a victorious life. I pray that You come into my life to be my Lord and Saviour. Fill me with the Holy Spirit of God so that I can lead a satisfying and victorious life. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.
If you pray the above prayer, you have become a Christian. Look for a church near your place and start reading God’s words (bible). Tell Jesus all the difficulties you face in your life and you will be amazed at the miracles and blessings that He is going to bring into your life.
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