In accordance with my new chapter-a-day project, today’s reading is Genesis 2 and there are 4 things I want to highlight from the chapter. Find them below:
Genesis 2 starts out by letting us know that God rested from all His work on the seventh day. This is funny because it had me thinking about how the world has glorified busyness. If you are not constantly doing something or hustling then something is wrong. But we are not to be conformed to the way of the world. We are to be transformed by the renewing of our minds (Romans 12:2) and I believe that there are some important lessons to learn about how to work from how God created the world:
a) Note that God had an agenda for each day of creation and after the day’s work, He stopped (Genesis 1). He did not try to do it all in one day. He broke it down and focused on the task for each day. Once the task for the day was done, it was done. Sufficient for each day was its own troubles (Matthew 6:34).
b) Beyond the little breaks between tasks, Genesis 2:2 says God took a whole day to rest once He was done with the work He had been doing and He made it holy. It was sacred. Guys. If the God of the universe who neither slumbers nor sleeps (Psalm 121: 2-4) chose to cease from His labor and saw enough good in this to make it sacred, so can you. It is about balance. Work hard and rest hard.
In Genesis 2:4-9, the Bible states that:
Now no shrub had yet appeared on the earth and no plant had yet sprung up, for the Lord God had not sent rain on the earth and there was no one to work the ground, but streams came up from the earth and watered the whole surface of the ground. Then the Lord God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.
I found this so interesting because in Genesis 1, man was created post-plants. None of the commentaries I looked at addressed this but the verse that follows this excerpt leads me to think that maybe the plants that were created pre-man were in the garden of Eden. Anyone who has a take on this is more than welcome to share because this girl is slightly confused. Anyway, it does not take away from the main things to note here:
a) Plants had not appeared because God had not sent rain and there was no one to work the ground. Before something can manifest , the necessary environment for success and sustainability must be created. Before plants can appear there must be rain and someone to take care of the land.
b) God works in tandem with man. He has a part to play (rain) but so do we (working the ground). When everyone does their part, plants are able to spring up and thrive (fruitfulness?). So do your part, let God do His and watch your combined efforts bear fruit. It reminds me of Jesus’ words in John 15:4: No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.
In Genesis 2: 8-17, the Bible lets us know that God had caused a lot of trees to grow in Eden and had told Adam that he could eat from all the trees but one. We all know what happens – Adam and Eve eat from that one tree and all hell breaks lose (Genesis 3). I wonder how many of us do that – focus on the have-nots of our life instead of the haves. As I was reading this, I got semi-convicted. It is like I abandon all the good God is doing to focus on those one or two things I want that He has put a hold on or said no to. I have the whole of the garden of Eden with all kinds of fruits so why am I fixated on that one fruit that I cannot have? I think a perspective shift is in order for me. I need to learn to count and more importantly, focus on my blessings.
Genesis 2:25 states that Adam and Eve were both naked and felt no shame. To me, naked here means vulnerable, everything on display- the good, the bad and the ugly. And they felt no shame. Let’s move to Genesis 3 where they disobey God and end up covering themselves. When I hear of this story, most of the focus is on them hiding from God but look at this: when they were naked, they were naked before God but also each other. When they sinned and made coverings for themselves, they hid their nakedness from God but also each other. While their disobedience broke their relationship with God, it also distorted how they related to each other (man to fellow man). Sin/disobedience does not only affect your relationship with God. It also affects your relationship with other people. I wonder if that is why the two greatest commandments focus on restoration with God and with fellow man – love God but also love your neighbor/fellow man as yourself (Matthew 22:36-40).
Happy Sunday and stay blessed folks!