The Garden—A Story of Wisdom
Many interpretations as to the meaning of the Garden of Eden story have been offered. When discussing the Path of the Way, the Garden story is directed toward the nature of wisdom and the wisdom of God.
The later wisdom teachings within Judaism emphasize the application of wisdom while discerning a situation. (here are a few examples)
Wise-Hearted, Ex. 28.3: “And thou shalt speak unto all who are wise hearted, whom I have filled with the spirit of wisdom.” It deals with establishing a formal priesthood (structure of authorities), wisdom teachers or counselors, and ministering unto God and God to man.
Wise behavior, I Sam. 18.14: “And David behaved himself wisely in all his ways; and the Lord was with him.” So, behaving wisely brings God closer to you. The Lord was with David because David had acquiesced to wisdom, the wisdom pathway (see, I Sm. 18.7-15).
1. Acquiesced to wisdom: Not his own will, not based on his likes and dislikes or preferences, nor even his personal values.
2. Acquiescing to wisdom is one aspect of the wisdom pathway. It may mean that you have to set aside your own values to acquire wisdom.
3. In this passage, Saul becomes jealous and feels threatened. One’s way of thinking and behaving, or old habits of thinking should be replaced with Sowing Good Seed, acquiescing to wisdom revealed by the spirit. David’s pathway is a wisdom pathway.
a. I realize that looking to wisdom is a big change, and not easy to do at first, but is important in any pathway you may engage, especially Walking in the Way. (Building your own house requires a certain wisdom and an order to events. Much more is it true that building your house within requires a certain wisdom, an order to events. The exception is, this house is built by the spirit of God, He who dwells within.)
The Garden story develops the wisdom theme from the beginning. Experiences are ordered: Adam names the Garden and oversees it; he tends to that which grows from the ground and produces fruit for food. He has real responsibilities and guardianship. By these facts, including how and what Adam names, Adam has authority over the Garden. Your garden, your life, is similar.
Spiritual life in the Garden is typified by communion with God. Unity, peace, love, and beauty symbolize the Garden, revolving around a masculine and feminine polarity. Wholeness with God is the primary emphasis.
Three attributes become primary in the Garden story: the advent of Desire, the resultant lack of Obedience, and attributes concerning Authority issues, not only the breaking of authority but removal from authority.
Adam & Eve
In the Garden, God’s time and timing are essential. Good timing is a function of wisdom.
Adam and Eve become distracted by the Shining Serpent. They lose their “place” (off balance) and thus Eve’s judgment then wanders into desire. Concerning Adam, he wanders into mere acceptance.
The circumstance is sudden and Eve’s desire is without forethought. Forethought, or “stepping back” to consider, does not seem to be in Eve’s nature, nor is it Adam’s.
Desire can cause you to lie to yourself:
Eve creates this new thought structure when she lies to herself and misquotes God: “Lest you die,” adding a kind of question mark, as opposed to “surely die,” which is definite and is what God said.
With two authorities in conflict (God vs. Satan), what you determine as good and bad, based only on desire instead of wisdom, leads to the altar at which mankind worships—the religion of self-centeredness—and building justification as a part of the new religion, therein, the mind then follows the eyes.
As a child takes instruction from a parent reflects the attribute of obedience.
Matt. 18.1-6, (3)”…except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter the kingdom of heaven.” Jesus then addresses humility,”…shall humble himself as this little child.”
The obedience God offers Adam and Eve is not meant to control or suppress but to guide and bestow, as a parent would do, and in an orderly manner—God’s order of events.
Eve does not seek God nor seek Adam’s advice, and Adam accepts Eve’s opinion.
Obedience is an attribute of character (an intent to obey) and an action, usually in the context of simple experiences in the beginning, much like rearing a child, so wisdom lessons can be taught or presented. Adam and Eve move past this season and essentially create their own season or timing, out of God’s timing.
Obedience reflects standards and values, a developing thought structure operating within the kingdom, not necessarily of the self—the introduction of conscience, for example. So, obedience deals with how the spirit is allowed to deliver wisdom or bring a soul forward, and why the lesson of obedience is so prominent in the Garden story.
Seeking, and asking prospers moving toward the spirit, which is helpful relative to obedience. Willingness to walk a more obedient pathway is helpful. Sowing seed for cooperation with the spirit is likewise useful.
Obedience becomes one important factor for Walking in the Way.
Which authority are you going to follow? All pathways are under some authority, even paths that are destructive. Divergent pathways always reveal themselves by improper methods, improper (wrong) authorities (vengeance), or improper intent (motives are revealed, con artist). Adam and Eve act under a divergent authority.
You sow from the spirit into the spirit (discuss and demonstrate).
John 3.24, “God is a Spirit: and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth.”
Adam is constructive in the Garden; you be constructive in your garden.
Sowing good seeds is a form of communion and produces an inner relationship (kingdom within) with God.