Thursday, September 11, 2014

Let everything that has breath praise the Lord!

Genesis 2:15 (NIV)

The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.
Often in reading Genesis 2:15, the thought that comes to mind is that God created the first man Adam in the Garden.  But  the Scripture says, God put him in the Garden of Eden.
He placed him there to work and enjoy creation.  As I was studying this one verse, the phrase "take care of it"  lends to the concept of "guarding" the garden, tend,  or to watch over, or even a watchman.
He had the perfect occupation in a perfect sanctuary. Looking around at the beautiful creation that God placed him in.  He had perfect fellowship with God.  A place to communicate with God, a place of worship.
In the Garden, this place where Adam could adore his Maker, worship was as natural a breathing.  I could imagine, every task he did, tending to all that God had already created; discovering all the beauty and colors and of praise must have echoed throughout the Garden. I could picture Adam bellowing out from behind the trees, tasting every plump juicy fruit, "Lord this is good". Yes, God created all things and he said it was good.  Praise and adoration flowing from the core of Adam's being; love and reverence, thanksgiving and every imaginable act of worship poured out to God! It was out of reverence and obedience that Adam enjoyed this intimacy with God.
When Adam failed to guard the Garden, God's Garden, death entered in and man was displaced because of his disobedience.  If the Lord asked Adam to "guard" the garden would that imply that there was an enemy lurking somewhere? Well, what we do know is that indeed an enemy lured Adam and Eve to sin and the results were just as God said, "you will surely die".
We see the introduction to the shedding of blood even as the Lord prepares garments for the children that disobeyed. Instead of requiring their blood, God gave them garments made of animal skin.  Here we are at the beginning; it is the mercy and the love of God that provided a covering for them. Somebody had to die. A shadow of the things to come.  Christ himself would shed his blood at the appointed time to cover for the sins of the world.
A broken paradise.  A fallen man.  A cursed world.  Worship interrupted by a distraction.  They let their guard down and were deceived.
Since the Fall of man it has become more challenging to worship our God.  Interruptions cause our focus to shift.  Distractions call for our attention.  Pride brings out a mirror and asks us to look at ourselves removing God from his throne and placing a little image of ourselves to adore instead. But, for the worshiper that desires to honor God,  he leads them besides quiet waters and he refreshes their soul.  He give us glimpses of his glory that leave us in awe! Though the place of worship in the Garden is gone, he comes to indwell every believer, he comes and makes residence in us calling us back to a place of intimacy with Him.  Once again we feel the breeze of the day and sense his presence; we know he is here.  He allows us to engage him allowing even a change to occur in us.  Glory to God!
Much has changed; The Garden protected by a flaming sword. Though we were expelled, He pursued us.  It's a relentless pursuit. We've sensed him calling and we've ignored him. The Word became flesh and walked among us but we did not recognize him.  He came to die, was crucified and we despised him. "Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God". (John 1:12-13)
For the true worshiper that seeks him, being in his presence is life, a longing fulfilled! Let everything that has breath praise the Lord!
God bless you!~Liz


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