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UNDERSTANDING THE GARDEN ACCOUNT

THE CURE

“Life is short; death is sure; sin the curse; Christ the cure.”

 

This now leads us to God’s remedy for our sin. As we have mentioned before, Adam and Eve, in a type, or figuratively, had attempted their own cure. The Law had exposed their nakedness before God—they did not measure up to His standard of holiness; they fell short of the glory of God. The Law had given them an awareness that there were differences between them and their Creator, and as would soon follow, that there were differences between them and other men and women also. Clothes cover up our physical faults and present an image to the world that we are something that we are not. Clothes may make a man before other men, but they do not hide our nakedness before God. Now of course, all of this is figurative. The real issue was not just their physical nakedness, but the nakedness within their souls and spirits as well. In every aspect of their being—body, soul, and spirit—they fell short. The fig leaf clothing that they had made represented man’s efforts to hide his shortcomings from God and from other men. The clothes that we wear, be they the cloaks of a priest, the suit of a businessman, or the leathers of a biker may hide our physical flesh and present an image to the world of what we want them to think about us, but God is not fooled. The deeds we do, the works of the flesh, our pretense of love or goodwill to others, may fool men, but again, God is not so deceived. Our spiritual show, our religiousness, our piety, our churchianity may cause others to think we are godly, but God sees us as we really are.

Gen 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

Psa 39:5 Behold, thou hast made my days as an handbreadth; and mine age is as nothing before thee: verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity. Selah.

Psa 94:11 The LORD knoweth the thoughts of man, that they are vanity.

Ecc 1:2 Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity.

Psa 39:6 Surely every man walketh in a vain shew: surely they are disquieted in vain: he heapeth up riches, and knoweth not who shall gather them.

Matt 23:5 But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments,
6 And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,
7 And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi.

Matt 15:8 This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.
9 But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.

Heb 4:13 Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do.

The coverings men make for their nakedness are as frail and perishable as those aprons of fig leaves that Adam and Eve had made. Many times the Scriptures will make this analogy when speaking of man’s righteousness, man’s beauty, or man’s glory—it is like a fading flower or a blade of grass that quickly dries up and dies. Every thing about man is fleeting—the beauty and strength of youth, our moment in the spotlight, the riches we heap up; everything passes away so quickly. The fallen couple would need something far more durable and long lasting to wear than those fig leaf aprons; they would need a covering that would last for an eternity.

Isa 64:6 But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.

Isa 28:1 Woe to the crown of pride, to the drunkards of Ephraim, whose glorious beauty is a fading flower, which are on the head of the fat valleys of them that are overcome with wine!

James 1:10 But the rich, in that he is made low: because as the flower of the grass he shall pass away.
11 For the sun is no sooner risen with a burning heat, but it withereth the grass, and the flower thereof falleth, and the grace of the fashion of it perisheth: so also shall the rich man fade away in his ways.

In another sense, Adam and Eve had made themselves a fig leaf bandage to put over their sin.  They had made themselves a herbal remedy for their deadly disease; but what they needed was to be washed from the filthiness of their sins, be given a new heart, and a new life. Only the Heavenly Heart Doctor could do for them what they could not do for themselves. First, they needed the cleansing blood of an innocent sacrifice. Fallen man could never atone for his sin, or anyone else’s; therefore, in a type, the blood of an innocent animal was shed. Then that sinless animal’s coat was made into a covering for their nakedness; giving them clothes that now made them acceptable before God. Of course, this was only an innocent animal, whose blood and skin could have no real benefit in delivering Adam and Eve from the consequences of their sin. It was only a picture, a foreshadowing—as is the whole Old Testament with all of its bloody sacrifices—of the one true sacrifice that would take place upon Calvary’s cross. It portrayed the blood atonement of the Lamb of God and the perfect coat of the righteousness of Christ, made into a robe of righteousness for His people. This offering, however, did form the basis by which all Old Testament saints were justified by God—faith in the sacrifice of an innocent substitute for sins. From Adam, to Abel, to Noah, to Abraham, to Moses, and throughout the first four thousand years of human history, this sacrifice was repeated over and over by those people of God who sought for His mercy and forgiveness.

Gen 3:21 Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.

Psa 49:7 None of them can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him:
8 (For the redemption of their soul is precious, and it ceaseth for ever:)

Eze 11:19 And I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within you; and I will take the stony heart out of their flesh, and will give them an heart of flesh:
20 That they may walk in my statutes, and keep mine ordinances, and do them: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God.

Col 1:20 And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.

Heb 9:12 Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.

13 For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh:

14 How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

1 John 1:7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.

Rev 1:5 And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,

Tit 3:3 For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another.
4 But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared,
5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;
6 Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour;
7 That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

Isa 61:10 I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.

Rev 7:9 After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands;

Rev 19:7 Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.
8
And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.

2 Cor 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

In giving further comment on the Biblical narrative, we must make the following assumptions. Although God provided the sacrifice and covering for Adam and Eve, He did not forcibly remove their fig leaf garments and dress them in the animal skins. We must assume that first, the fallen couple was made fully aware that their present situation was dire indeed, and that the clothing that they had made for themselves was not sufficient for their covering; second, they must have had a certain faith or trust in God, that what He now offered to them would remedy their problem; third, they must have willingly accepted the fact that an innocent animal had been slain for them and then allowed God to dress them in those garments. In that Garden where they had seen no death, now to have witnessed the bloody sacrifice of that animal, would have shown to them that another had died in their place that they might live. In like manner, every child of God who has been brought to faith in Christ must be brought to see their nakedness or sinfulness before God; and to know the awful state of their soul that is under the judgment of God. Then, they must in true repentance cast off any covering that they have been using heretofore to cover up their sin. They must throw themselves completely at the mercy of God and rely only upon what He offers to them as a means of salvation. They must be brought to see that it is only the blood of Christ that can make an atonement for their soul; and it is only His sinless righteousness that can allow them to stand before God. Now, when all of this happens—it may only take moments for God to bring them to this place, like the thief on the cross, or in some cases it may take years, like the Apostle Paul—God then washes away their sin in the blood of Jesus and puts on them the righteous robe of Christ. Now, we stress that it is God’s entire work to do all of this for men, who can do nothing for themselves. He made the coats and clothed them; but men are made willing to allow God to save them, to wash them, and clothe them.

Gen 3:21 Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.

Every aspect of salvation was pictured in the fall of Adam and Eve, and God’s redeeming work on their behalf. In the following verses we offer a breakdown of what salvation encompasses.

Man’s guilt under the law:

Rom 3:19 Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.
20 Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.
21 But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets;
22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:
23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

God’s wrath against sin:

John 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.

Rom 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;

1 Thess 1:9 For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God;
10 And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.

Man’s need of repentance towards God:

Luke 13:2 And Jesus answering said unto them, Suppose ye that these Galilaeans were sinners above all the Galilaeans, because they suffered such things?
3 I tell you, Nay:
but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.

Mark 2:17 When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

Luke 24:46 And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day:
47 And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.

Acts 20:21 Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.

Heb 6:1 Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God,

God’s mercy towards sinners:

Psa 51:1 Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions.
2 Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.
3 For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me.
4 Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest.
5 Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.
6 Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom.
7
Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

Luke 18:10 Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican.
11 The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican.
12 I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess.
13 And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.
14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.

The necessity of faith in God’s provision:

Heb 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Heb 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

Rom 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
17
For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.

Rom 4:4 Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.
5 But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly,
his faith is counted for righteousness.

Gal 2:16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

Rom 5:1 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:
2 By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

Rom 10:6 But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:)
7 Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.)
8 But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;
9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
11 For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.
12 For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.
13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

The Blood of Christ offered for man’s sin:

Rom 3: 24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:
25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;
26 To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.

Heb 9:11 But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building;
12 Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.
13 For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh:
14 How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

1 Pet 1:18 Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;
19
But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:

The Righteous Robe of Christ given to clothe His people:

Ph 3:8 Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ,
9
And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:

2 Cor 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

Rev 19:6 And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth.
7 Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.
8
And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.

The last insights into man’s fall and God’s cure concerns two trees: (1) The first tree was the Knowledge of Good and Evil, which we have already seen represents the Law. It was in partaking of the fruit of this tree that man was judged a sinner and died. The second tree, the tree of Calvary upon which Christ died, represents God’s grace. Sinners who partake of the fruit of that tree are judged righteous and receive new life. (2) Man, in partaking of that first tree, was cursed for breaking God’s Law; but Christ, on Calvary’s tree, bore that curse for all who partake in what His death accomplished—Christ’s perfect life satisfied the Law in every respect; and, because He had no sin of His own for which to die for, He died to satisfy all the demands of the Law against fallen man. (3) Man, in partaking of the forbidden tree, was forced to keep the law in order to stand in the presence of God; but our substitute, the Lord Jesus Christ, has keep it for us, and we now stand before God in Him.  

Rom 3:19 Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.
20 Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.
21 But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets;
22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:
23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:
25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;

Gal 3:13 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:

1 Pet 2:24 Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.

1 Cor 10:16 The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ?
17 For we being many are one bread, and one body: for we are all partakers of that one bread.
18 Behold Israel after the flesh: are not they which eat of the sacrifices partakers of the alter?

Rom 5:1 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:

Eph 2:4 But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us,
5 Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)
6 And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:

 

 

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