Now, as we have already learned in our study of origins in the study of the first chapter of Genesis, it is sheer foolishness, scientifically and it is utter unbelief, biblically, to impose on creation any kind of evolution.
Evolution is not a reasonable explanation for the universe or life on earth in any sense whatsoever. It is scientifically impossible and it is biblically rejected. We look closely at the issue of Genesis 1 in creation. We find no evidence of evolution whatsoever in the text of the Scripture, nor is there any indication, by any kind of reasonable science that any form of evolution, from species to species could at all take place.
And I've suggested to you a number of times, and I do it again. As you look more closely at the issue of unbelief and denial of the clearly-revealed account of creation in the Book of Genesis, it is fair to say that anyone who rejects the Genesis creation account, anyone who rejects that God created the universe in six, literal, 24-hours days makes an assault on Scripture, makes an assault on the historicity of Scripture, the accuracy of Scripture, the inspiration of Scripture, the inerrancy of Scripture and the authenticity of Scripture. It is no small thing to deny the straightforward creation account of Genesis 1. And we could go so far as to say that, in actuality, the Bible itself stands or falls with the historical accuracy of Genesis 1. If we cannot trust the creation account, then why should we trust anything else on the pages of Scripture?
It is sad to say that even the secular world has, through the years, better understood this than many Christians. For example, Darwin, who came with the original idea of the origin of species, was followed by a man by the name of Thomas Huxley who lived from 1825 to 1895. Now, Huxley was an ardent defender of Darwin's theory. Huxley, in fact, propagated evolution more than Darwin did. He was the one who really pressed evolution into the scientific and philosophical center of life. Listen to what Thomas Huxley wrote, and I'm quoting.
"I am fairly at a loss to comprehend how anyone, for a moment, can doubt that Christian theology must stand or fall with the historical trustworthiness of the Jewish trechors. The very conception of the Messiah or Christ is inextricably interwoven with Jewish history. The identification of Jesus of Nazareth, with that Messiah, rests upon the interpretation of the passages of the Hebrew Scriptures which have no evidential value, unless they possess the historical character assigned to them." There is a godless atheistic evolutionist saying that the whole of Christian theology rises or falls on the absolute historicity of the Old Testament. He said that in a book on essays by Huxley published in London in 1903 and yet, evangelicals seem to think that they can assault the historicity of Genesis and somehow still save the reality of biblical revelation. Tragically, one of the most severe blows ever dealt to the Christian faith has been inflicted by so-called Christians and so-called evangelical scholars who reject widely the Genesis account, in favor of some form of evolution.
The British writer by the name of Andy Macintosh has written a book called, Genesis for Todayand in it, he says this, "In recent years, a somewhat strange trend has developed in Christian circles. While some secular authors have begun to doubt the traditional evolutionary thinking of Darwin, Huxley and others who first made popular such views, some evangelical Christians have been developing the concept that God used evolution to make the world, the view, which is termed theistic evolution. Such an idea is, of course, by no means new but it now becoming more fashionable among evangelicals who supposedly hold to the infallibility of Scripture, as well as to liberals who do not. Some notable recent books by evangelical writers doubting the straightforward creationist position on Genesis are..." and he names Master Planby Roy Clements.
Another book which rejects the creation account is the book called, The Scandal of Evangelical Mind, written by Mark Knoll. His book, says Andy Macintosh, are published by Inner Varsity Press who has a strong evangelical tradition. He goes on to say, "The Christian evangelical is increasingly being led to believe that the literal interpretation of Genesis is simply a matter of opinion and this is particularly brought out by the book, Creation and Evolution, a book in a series called, When Christians Disagree." "And of course, the implication," he says, "is that the issue of creation is a secondary issue like things such as passivism or politics in Christians have every right to disagree."
Is this really the case? Is the Bible so unclear as to the method of creation that it's a point where we can gentlemanly disagree? Well, many evangelicals believe so. In fact, the majority seem to think so and the irony is that while more and more evangelicals are embracing a form of evolution, secular writers are beginning to rethink whether evolution could have happened at all. And of course, Thomas Huxley, himself a convinced atheist, understood very clearly that Christianity, as such, rose or fell on the truthfulness of the Bible and he knew that included the Book of Genesis. And he also knew that if he could shatter society's confidence in the first book of the Bible, he could ultimately destroy their confidence in the other 65 books. He knew all the major doctrine held by the established church would be abandoned finally if ultimately they abandoned Genesis. In the mainline denomination certainly that is exactly what has happened.
Andy Macintosh goes on to say, "Once creation, the fall and the flutter, brought into question his history, then this brings immediately into disrepute, not just the statements of the apostles who were basically affirming Genesis but of the Lord Jesus Christ who also appealed to Genesis as history." And he writes, "The whole meaning of sin and redemption is blurred and lost if we lose the anchor of Genesis." The purist and poet, John Milton, saw the grandeur of redemption based on a firm belief in the Bible. It's the greatness of 17thCentury commitment to a Biblical world view, as reflected in his epic poems, Paradise Lost andParadise Regained. It says, on Macintosh, "If we are to believe we originally came from monkeys and apes, with generations of violence and bloodshed and that there was no literal Eden, do what do we make of the Bible's promises concerning the new Heavens and the new earth in which righteousness dwells"? He's right. He has it exactly right. And this is pervasive among evangelical "scholars." Even the well-known Bible commentator, John Stock, who has benefited many of us with his writings, believes that man had hominoid ancestors from which he evolved and he says that in his book, Understanding the Bible, of all things, published in 1984.
Now, this is a grievous and I think fair to say, a cardinal distrust of Scripture in its first chapter and it ultimately undermines all biblical authority and brings the right to question everything that comes after Genesis 1. So as we have been going through this section of origins, it has become clear to us that it is the true Word of God regarding creation history and we have treated it as such to the honor of God and the clarity of our own understanding.
Now, the high point of creation came on day six and you will remember, back on day six, in verse 26, God made man. "Let us make man in our image, according to our likeness, let them rule over the fish in the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth and over creeping thing that creeps on the earth. And God created man in His own image and the image of God, He created a male and female. He created them and God blessed them and God said to them, 'Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over every living thing that moves on the earth.' And God said, 'I've given you every plant-yielding seed that is on the surface of all the earth and every tree which has fruit-yielding seed. It shall be food for you.'" And there, we have the creation of man, as stated in Chapter 1.
Now, that happened on day six and as we noted when we studied that, man was made in God's image. What does that mean? It means he had self-consciousness, not just consciousness like animals have but self-consciousness. He had personality, cognition--that is, the ability to rationally process information, he had intelligence. He had--and I think this is such a notable thing about man--creativity and it is staggering to look around the world and see the immense creativity of man. One of the things that struck me, as I was in Paris a couple of weeks ago, and I was meandering through downtown Paris from the Palace Royal to the Luru Museum of Art, to all of the incredible buildings that go way back in the history of France, back to the Louis XIV and Louis XVI and when you see the incredible buildings and the incredible art that is absolutely mind-boggling, the genius of architecture--I had the pleasure of touring Versai which is beyond description and is a very clear indication as to why there was a French revolution and why they chopped the head off of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette because he built these incredible palaces, these incredible places of immense indescribable wealth on the backs of the poverty of an entire nation and all of its colonies. There's no wonder there was a French Revolution, the way they created poverty everywhere to indulge themselves beyond description.
When you look at it, it is no monuments or religion. It is no monument immediately to God but it is a monument to the staggering creativity of mankind. The architecture is breathtaking. The design is just amazing and then when you go to the museum and you see painting after painting after painting by all the masters, you are really staggered by the human genius that is behind this. When you trek in and out of cathedrals and you see the marvelous art that hangs there, that's one thing but the architecture of all of that, I suppose, foolishly, by some judgments, was a cajole into climbing to the tower of the great cathedral, Notre Dame, in Paris, all the way to the top and seeing all of the underpinnings and everything going up and amazing that something could be built like that back in the 1300s or whenever it was built. Man's creativity is staggering and I challenge you to go the monkey section of the L.A. zoo and see what you see there.
There are marks of creativity in man that reflect the image of God in him and then there is the relationships we talked about. Only man builds relationships. So God created man in His image with self-consciousness, personality, rationality, intelligence, creativity, relationships and gave him sovereignty over the entire created world and all its vast resources so that man could bring up out of this rich, rich planet immense demonstrations of his marvelous abilities, rationality and creatively and relationally. Now with the creation of man on day six, the real story began. All the rest of creation was only a stage for man to play out the great drama of redemption. The real story began on day six. All the other creation just provided the backdrop for the history of man.
Now, the history of man starts in chapter two, verse four and goes to the end of the Book of Genesis. That's the original history of man, from chapter two, verse four to chapter 50, verse 26 is the original history of man, the first great sweep of human history. So what you have in chapter one, verse one to chapter two, verse three is the creation of the universe, including man, starting in chapter two, verse four, to the end of Genesis, in fact, to the end of time is the history of man, the generations of man. So as you come to verse four, in Genesis 2, you come to a very important verse. Here is a line of demarcation in the Hebrew text. This inaugurates a completely new section. This the account of the heavens and the earth when they were created in the day that the Lord God made earth and heaven. Literally, in Hebrew, says, "These are the generations." _____ in Hebrew. These are the generations of the heavens and earth when they were created. Here is the beginning of the story of the generations of mankind.
So the Genesis 2:4 points forward. It is not a second account of creation, as critics have said. The second and conflicting account, some of them. It is not an account of creation, chapter two, opposed to the account of creation in chapter two. Not at all. There's only one record of creation, that's Genesis 1. Genesis 2 does not deal with anything during the week of creation, except what pertains to the story of man. That's a very, very important understanding. All you have, in chapter two, is focused on man. Genesis 1 briefly introduced the fact of man's creation. Genesis 2 explains the details of that creation. So what you have in very traditional, typical Hebrew style, much like the headlines in the newspaper. Genesis 1 says man is created in God's image, and hibon dominion. Genesis 2 is the article that describes all the details under that headline. Genesis 2 does not repeat day one, day two, day three, day four or day five. Genesis 2 does not deal with the elements of the creation of light or the creation of the sky or the creation of the earth or the separation of land and water or the creation of plants or the creation of animals. Genesis 2 only deals with man, so that when you come to chapter two, man is plucked up, as it were, out of that whole creation of chapter one and he's put on center stage as the drama of redemption unfolds with the rest of creation as the backdrop. So that man becomes, starting in chapter two, verse four, the subject of the rest of Genesis and the rest of the Bible all the way to the end in the Book of Revelation. So I want you to mark that in your mind, Genesis 2:4 launches a whole new section, the details of man's creation by God on day six. Details are explained in chapter two.
Now the question could be asked, how did Moses obtain this information? Well, he wasn't there. It is the account of the creation, the details of the creation of man that is very different from pagan myths and pagan legends and pagan fictions. Where did Moses get this? Well, he didn't get it from any human source, for no one existed to witness it. He didn't get it from his own reason, for no reason can know the power of a Creator. Reason cannot know how He created. So the only possible way that Moses, who wrote this, could know this was if God revealed the data to him and therefore, He must have done that. "So it is"--listen to Hebrews 11:3--"that we understand that the worlds were framed by the Word of God through faith." Very important, through faith. This isn't the product of some human reason. This can't be the product of some ancient Hebrew search. No one was there. No one could know it. The only way we had any record of creation is if the Creator gave it to us and this is that record given by the Creator. "So that by faith in God and His Word, we understand that the worlds were framed." Hebrews 11:3.
So what we're going to find in chapter two is the details of the creation of man. We're going to find the creation of man, the location of man in the Garden of Eden. We're going to find the location of man, what he was doing. We're going to find the probation of man, what he was not to do and we're going to find the relation of man when God gave him woman. Now all that is summed up in chapter one when it says, in verse 27, "God created man in His own image and He created him male and female." Now we get the details of that. "In the day the Lord God made heaven and earth, the generation of man began." By the way, just a note, in verse four, "In the day the Lord God made earth and heaven." We know He did it in six days. This is simply using day as a reference to the time period and day can mean an undetermined period of time, an undesignated period of time when there is no number associated with it but wherever, in the Old Testament, day has a number, like day one, day two, day three, it refers always to a 24-hour day. Here, no number and so it is simply a general reference to the period of time which actually was six days in which God created the universe. But now we come to that sixth day and although on the sixth day, God created animals as well, land animals, that is not dealt with in chapter two because this is the tolodoth of generations of man on the earth. Let's begin with the creation of man in verses five to seven.
Verse five--and we're going to get the scene. This is fascinating. "Now no shrub of the field was yet in the earth and no plant of the field had yet sprouted for the Lord God had not sent rain upon the earth and there was no man to cultivate the ground." You get into that verse and immediately, you face a huge issue here. How are we to understand this verse? And this is the setting for the creation of man that is specifically indicated in verse seven. We'll get there, perhaps, in a moment. I won't be sure of that because I want you to understand this and I didn't even understand this when I wrote the original note in the study Bible and I had to do a lot more work to come to a complete understanding of this. Because what it seems to be saying here is that the record of man's creation--we know we're talking about the creation of man. We're into the generations of man and He's pulling man out of the six-day creation and it's all about man and yet He starts out by saying, "There's no shrub of the field and no plant of the field yet sprouted" and so it appears as if, since all of that was created on the third day, He's actually going back to the second day, before the creation of the plants. And if that's the case, then that confuses the reader as to the subject matter of chapter two. Why does he go back, prior to day three, before the vegetation was created, if He's only discussing the creation of man and furthermore, how can we understand that there was no shrub of the field, no plant of the filed because there was no rain when on the third day, God created plants and He created trees and it didn't rain--are you ready for this--for at least 1,000 years? It didn't rain at all until the flood, in Noah's time in Genesis 6, about 1,000 years later. So how can you say, if we're talking about man, that God hadn't created the plants yet and that the reason He hadn't created them was there wasn't any rain? And furthermore, he says, "And there wasn't any man to cultivate them." That doesn't make sense either because they were done on day three and he wasn't even created on day six, so they didn't depend on rain and they didn't depend on man's cultivation.
So this verse has confused a lot of people, a lot of people and let me tell you something, as always, in my studies, through the years, confusion comes from a superficial understanding of the Hebrew text and I admit that even mine was superficial at the time I was going through this in the wealth of material, in all the study Bible, I didn't give the attention to this that it deserved. But I have since and I'm anxious to give you the insight that you need to understand this. I don't ever want to be guilty of superficiality--I think you know that. None of us do. So in order to understand what is actually being said in verse five, which by the way, is fascinating, we have to go back to the original Hebrew text and I'm not sure that even the translators of the various English editions really had a grip on the original significance of the Hebrew text. We have to go back to that and when I want to go back to the original Hebrew text, I want to go as far back into the original Hebrew mind and language as I possibly can. I have limitations, obviously, so I look for somebody who has no limitations when it comes to dealing with the Hebrew text. And there is such a scholar who has written a monumental work on the Book of Genesis. I've mentioned him before. His name is Kiseido. He is a Hebrew scholar who has written on the Hebrew text of Genesis and originally written in the Hebrew language his commentary.
And Kiseido reminds us that we, today, tend to think in the Greek way of thinking, the Greek process of thought, and we have to go back and remember the Semitic way of thinking, how Jewish thought patterns follow. And the Hebrew pattern of thinking in writing a history is this--and this is what Kiseido says, this great Hebrew scholar, he says that "The first way that a Hebrew deals with history is to state the general proposition and then to clarify the details and the particulars" and that's exactly what I came to conclude in my understanding of how chapter two relates to chapter one. In chapter one, you have the general proposition of the creation of man. Chapter two, you have the laying down the particulars. And Kiseido affirms that this is, in fact, the case. So chapter one gives the statement of facts. Chapter two clarifies the details. And so he affirms that chapter two is not another story of creation but a detailed account, adding detail to the original statement in chapter one to further clarify the place of man as the central being in the created universe and the drama of redemption.
Now as he comes to verse five, Kiseido gives us some very wonderful, wonderful insights. He understands--and you want to get onto this because it's very important--that the narrative, as I understand it, does begin in day six so that when you come to verse five, you are not, prior to day three, prior to the creation of plants, you are actually in day six. And that what verse five I saying is not that there weren't any plants and there weren't any trees because there were and they were already created and they didn't need rain and they also didn't need man to till the ground. They were created on day three. So whatever shrubs are of the field and whatever plants are of the field, they are not the plants and trees of day three but they are something else--and this becomes fascinating to me. In fact, the word from shrub is cya, cya, in Hebrew and the word for plant is eseb, eseb. The cya of the field and the esebof the field had not yet sprung up for two reasons. They were dependent on rain which didn't come for 1,000 years and they were dependent on man tilling the soil, which he never did until after--what? After the fall. So whatever these plants are, they are dependent on rain, on the one hand, and dependent on the tilling of the soil. They hadn't yet appeared on the earth because there was no rain and man did not till the soil.
Now rain came after the fall. Tilling the ground came after the fall. We can readily conclude then that these plants appeared after the fall and so it is right to say here they weren't on the earth. The post-fall plants weren't on the earth at this time and so the revelation of God is simply telling us that as we begin the generation of man, we are in a pre-fall environment. The fall led to rain, ultimately, in the flood. The fall led to man tilling the soil which brought about certain plants which we not in existence before the fall. So as we ask the question, what then is the cyaof the field and what is the esebof the field, we turn again to our Hebrew scholar.
He writes, "When the verse declares that these species were missing, the meaning is that these kinds were wanting but not other kinds" and that's the point. There were plenty of trees and plenty of plants, as we indicated back on day three and they were used for man as it tells us in verse 29 of chapter one. When he was created, they were there already available for him but these particular two were not in existence. If we _____, he writes, "To understand the significance of the cyaof the field, and the eseb of the field, in the context of our narrative, then we need to glance at the end of the story. It is stated there, in the words addressed by the Lord God to Adam after he sinned. What did God say to Adam? Genesis 3:18. "Thorns and thistles, it shall bring forth to you and you shall eat the esebof the field." That's interesting.
Because of the fall, you're going to have thorns and thistles and you're going to eat the esebof the field. Now the word esebof the field is identical with the expression in this verse. It's the same expression. It's translated in the NI as plant of the field, the second was. It's exactly the same in chapter three, verse 18, identical. "Thorns and thistles are synonymous with the cya of the field. So what he is saying is this, when God first created man, there were no thorns and thistles. We can understand that, can't we? Because there was no fallen-ness. And there were no eseb of the field. What is the eseb of the field? It has reference to those kinds of plants which are the product of man's tilling the soil. You get that? These species didn't exist until after Adam's transgression. In consequence of his fall, weeds, thorns, thistles, the cyacame into existence and so did the kind of eseb, the kind of plants that grow because they are cultivated when man tills the soil. It says, in Genesis 3:23, "You're going to have to till the soil so that"--and this is a very straightforward statement--"so you're going to have to cultivate the ground so that you can take from it food to eat." Literally, verse 19, by the sweat of your face, you're going to eat bread, bread. Literally, 3:18, you're going to eat the esebof the field and then verse 19, you're going to eat bread. Bread was made out of the eseb. What is the esebof the field? Kiseido says it's very clear--barley, oats, wheat, any cultivated grain that you make bread out of. You're going to sweat, tilling the ground to bring forth crops. So the esebis wheat, barley, any kind of grain from which bread was made. And you know, in the pre-fall world, there weren't any cultivated fields. Men didn't till the ground. They didn't make rows and plant seeds and grow crops. They didn't do that. In the original garden, there was a flourishing of everything that man could ever want to eat in varieties that were probably beyond his description. "And the earth brought forth everything of its own accord and there were no thorns and there were no thistles that make the whole tilling process so difficult and so they," says Kiseido, "and when the rains come in the land of Israel, the weeds flourish." And Jesus knew that, didn't He? When He told the parable, in Matthew 13, of the soils. The cyaof the field then refers to the thorns and thistles, the weeds. The esebof the field, refers to the grain that was planted, the ground that was tilled to bring forth crops that could produce man's bread.
What we're learning then, in verse five, is that when the story of man begins, it begins before that ever happened. There was no rain. You know what rain does. It just causes weeds to grow, doesn't it? It does in my yard. It does all over the world and there was no man to till the ground. No rain, no weeds. No man, no crops. So what did we learn here? When God planted the plants and planted trees on the third day, there was a world of vegetation. Trees and plants that naturally reproduced themselves by seed alone. But there were none of these other kinds of plants.
Now in that day, also--look at verse six. And there's been confusion about this verse as well. Even the way it's translated in the NAS but a mist used to rise from the earth and water the whole surface of the ground. Now this has been a somewhat traditional idea that there was some kind of evaporation coming off the ground and watering the earth. Again, when we look more directly into the original Hebrew text, we get a completely different picture. There wasn't any rain but that doesn't mean there wasn't any water. He tells us what happened. Literally, in the Hebrew, it says, "But the waters of the deep"--the waters of the deep, and I'm giving you the literal translation--"went up from the earth and watered the whole face of the ground." This doesn't convey to me the idea of a mist and in fact, you'll notice a marginal note that uses the word "flow". The word is not "mist" here. It's ed. If you translated it, literally, it would be actually ed. It would be a long E and a D with an H kind of softening the E in Hebrew. And what it means is a spring. It literally means something that gushes up out of the ground. It's used, for example, in Numbers 21:17 which talks about spring up of wealth. So the whole earth was water, not by rain coming down but by water coming up from springs, literally, covering the ground, water gushing up from the ground, an intensely-high water table. Not just one spring but a flow rising from the earth, watering the whole surface of the ground. The whole earth with all of its marvelous plants made on day three was literally saturated with water that was in a constant subterranean upward spring. When the water would come up and it flow up, then surely down into subterranean sources again and cycling back up again to water the earth. There was no hydrological cycle. There was no evaporation to the clouds, the clouds moving over the land, dropping water and flowing across the earth and back into rivers and back into the sea and then evaporation. The hydrological cycle didn't exist.
So the word, in Hebrew, edrefers to the waters that sprung up all over the earth and this certainly fits verse 10. You can look at verse 10 and you'll see there that a river flowed out of Eden to water the Garden. And again, there's a spring, a spring-fed river literally gushing up out of the ground in the Garden of Eden, is a source of water that creates a river and really an amazing river that literally covers the entire garden and it divides, according to verse 10, and becomes four rivers--and we'll look at that later on. So in the original creation, the whole word of plants and trees did not receive water from above. They received water from below and the ability--this is very interesting--the ability of the earth to produce flourishing plants and flourishing trees--listen carefully--was never dependent on rain which sometimes comes and sometimes does not, okay? Do we understand that? Do we understand drought? Do we understand what it's like in places where the rain never falls? Do we understand what it's like when you have a severe drought that produces famine? Sure we do, historically. Do you understand then that rain is a judgment. It was a judgment when it came the first time, wasn't it? It was a severe judgment.
And it is the unpredictability of rain--listen--that gives God the right to give it or hold it back, according to His will. Sometimes the rain comes, sometimes it doesn't. Very unpredictable. Rain is a product of the fall. It wasn't that way in the original birth. It wasn't that way in the original garden which meant there was no unpredictability. There was a constant, unending, subterranean, spring-fed circulation of water that literally covered the face of the earth and caused everything to have absolute, unbroken continuity in a perfect hydrological system, rising up out of the ground to always, always, always keep everything completely watered perfectly. There was no randomness to it. It didn't depend on the whims of the wind. It didn't depend on anything and it wasn't something that God had to regulate as a blessing or a curse because there was only perfection and sinless-ness in His perfect world. They drew their water from below, constantly irrigated through the subterranean springs, creating rivers and springs and a water table everywhere across the face of the world.
This very consistent supply of water was in the Garden. It's so noted, Genesis 13:10. It says, "And Lot lifted up his eyes and saw all the valley of the Jordan, that it was well watered everywhere. This was before the Lord destroyed Sodom and Gomorra." In fact, he said, "It was watered like the Garden of the Lord,"--listen to this, "It was watered like the Garden of the Lord." When he saw a well-watered Jordan, he knew that's what it was in the Garden. It was just saturated with water and he says, at the end of verse 10, "It is like the land of Egypt as you go to Zoar." If any of you know about the amazing function of the Nile River, you know exactly what he's referring to. The Nile River overflows its banks and literally drowns all of the Egyptian delta in water and it does that annually and certainly throughout all of history. It has been the source of the source of flourishing productivity of that area.
And so that's sort of a picture, a post-fall picture of what it was like in Eden and all over the world before the fall. There was water everywhere, covering the ground. Not coming from above, but coming from springs and rivers and saturating the ground. Consistent water supply unbroken, uninterrupted and not at all unpredictable. Kiseido writes, "Man would have continued to enjoy these conditions had he remained free from sin but when he transgressed, the Lord punished him by decreeing that the soil should obtain its moisture from above so that He might requite man according to his deeds, giving him rain in its season, if he was worthy and withholding it, if he was no worthy." And I think he has it right. All of a sudden, rain became a means by which God could bless or judge. So the original hydrological or water cycle was very different from what we know after the fall, after the great flood and now water comes a result of global continental mass air movement, annual seasonal temperature changes and it's in the hands of a sovereign God to give the rain, to hold the rain back.
Now you look at these two verses and you realize that he's saying when man was first created, he didn't have to deal with the issues that came because of his sin. There weren't any weeds. There weren't any crops to till and plant and there wasn't any rain to worry about. It was a perfect world. No weeds on the face of the earth. Nothing to retard the growth of the good things. No crops to till. Food was abundant everywhere and he didn't have to toil for it. And he never had to worry about the water supply. It was unbroken. And then came sin and all of that changed. And now God controls the rain, to give or hold it back.
Psalm 147:8, "God provides rain for the earth." Job 5:10, "God gives rain on the earth and sends water on the fields." It's always at God's discretion that the rain comes. Joel 2:23, "God has given you the early rain. He has poured down for you the rain." Matthew 5:45, "God makes the rain to fall on the just and the unjust." Acts 14:17, Paul is defining the true God and he says, "It is God who gives you rain from heaven." Rain is in His hand, to give it as He sees fit. It is a blessing to use it as judgment. In Jeremiah, chapter five, it talks about how God controls the heavens and controls the earth and everything that is in it. He is the one who makes the earth quake. He is the one who sends the rain and the prophets have said that, repeatedly. He's the one who sends the lightening and the thunder and He controls all that is associated with the rain. It's the God of heaven who controls it all. Jeremiah 14:22, "Are there any among the idols of the nations who give rain?" Jeremiah says, "Do you know any idol who can make it rain or can the heavens grant showers on their own? Is it not thou, Oh Lord, our God? Therefore we hope in thee," says Jeremiah. He knows where the rain comes from. It comes from God. He gives it when he desires to give it and withholds it when He desires to withhold it.
I think I mentioned earlier Jeremiah 5 but I forgot to read it. It says, "It's our Lord God who gives rain in its season, both the autumn rain and the spring rain. It's our God who determines the crop and whether the crop is going to grow." Amos said the same thing, Amos 4:7. And as I said earlier, God can use the rain to destroy as He did in the flood. There are other illustrations of that. I don't want to get too bogged down in this but there are times when God has withheld rain and consequently created havoc in the world and when He has caused rain and that was devastating. For example, in the plagues of Egypt--I'm just thinking of Exodus 9--God sent a very heavy hail of rain that literally turned to hail and was terribly destructive and even brought death in Egypt.
So we're looking at a time before all of that. It was in that marvelous environment of the original creation. No weeds, no need to cultivate crops and constant, unending, full water supply created to maintain the rich indescribable perfections in bounty and delights of the created world. "And so it was in that environment"--verse 7--"that the Lord God formed man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and man became a living being." There is the creation. Now we know that God created man in His own image from chapter one, verse 26 but here, we are told how He did it. He formed man of dust. Job 10:8 says, "Your hands fashioned me and made me all together." Out of the way, folks, there's no evolution here. You see that? You see any evolution in verse seven? Do you see any pre-human, hominoid ancestors there? There's nothing here about God watched man evolve or God controlled man's evolution. God created him _____ literally created him out of nothing using the dust of the ground. In fact, in Job 4:19, man is described as "Those who dwell in houses of clay whose foundations" says that passage "is in the dust." And Job 10:9, "Remember now that you have made me as clay." Job says, "And would you turn me into dust again"? The testimony of Scripture is that God made man not from an ape or a baboon or a gibbon but He made man from dust. That is the testimony of Scripture, unequivocally the testimony of Scripture. Frankly, verse seven is a death blow to any evolutionary view whatsoever that makes man the process of some series of hominoid mutations. Isaiah 29:16, "Likens man to clay, being fashioned by the potter." And Paul picks that same imagery up, as you know, in Romans 9: 20 & 21. That's from Isaiah, chapter 29. Also, in Isaiah 45:9, we find a similar indication where it talks about the clay, man being the clay, somehow arguing with that potter and of course, that too is part of the imagery that Paul uses in Romans, chapter 9. You also find that in Isaiah 64 in verse eight.
Now for a minute, look at Genesis 3:19. Part of the curse on man is that he's going to die and when he dies, "He will return to the ground because from it, you were taken, for you are dust and to dust you shall return." You come from dust, you shall return to dust reminds me of a little boy who looked under the bed and saw a whole lot of dust and said to his mom, "Quick, mom, somebody's coming or going."
Now, in verse 23, again, it says, "The Lord God sent him"--verse 23, chapter 3--"The Lord God sent him out of the Garden of Eden to cultivate the ground from which he was taken." Listen, it's repeated enough times that anybody who says man developed out of a series of hominoid mutations is flatly denying the clear statement of Scripture, that God created man out of elements that are in the dust. And so what does this mean? Well, the smallest particles of the earth or the basic chemical elements are nitrogen, oxygen, hydrogen, calcium--we know those components. They make up everything. They make up the dust and they make us up as well. We are made out of the same basic chemical elements. The atoms that compose dirt are like the atoms that compose our bodies and everything else that exists. We are all made out of the same stuff. That is why in I Corinthians 15--I think it's verse 47--it says, "The first man is of the earth." Earthy. You know, you look at a rock and you say, well, certainly, that's an inanimate thing. Am I made of the same components as that rock? The answer is yes. Modern science will verify that you are. So God used some basic, substantial chemical material and He made man, the same way He made dirt and rocks out of the same components. No evolution at all. And then it says, "He breathed into his nostrils the breath of life."
Now that's an anthropomorphic picture. That's a vivid picture. You see God and He's made Adam and He's made him out of dirt and he's just this physical form and then God, as it were, puts His mouth--and it's anthropomorphic because God is a spirit--and He blows into his nostrils the breath of life. That's the imagery. This is to convey the thought that though man had all the physical apparatus, all the organs for life, the immeasurable reality of life is something that's not really part of those physical components. There is a transcendent reality of life that only God can give and it's an immeasurable thing. It's an immeasurable thing. God then blew into him life and started the breathing apparatus moving, the heart pumping, the blood circulating and all of the bodily organs moving in their symbiotic harmony of life. It's the breath of life, he calls it. The breath of life.
Animals have the breath of life. Over in chapter seven, in verse 21 and 22, it talks about birds and cattle and beasts and every swarming thing that swarms on the earth and all mankind and all that was on the dry land, all in who's nostrils was the breath of the spirit of life. So God literally blew life into everything that lives, everything that is animated. Breath is ruoc. It's the same word as "wind". It's the same word as "spirit" but only into man. Although He breathed life into all living creatures, only into man is God breathing life that is in His own image. And then, end of verse seven, "At the moment, became a living being." It became a nefesh. It became a soul. That God breathed in him the immaterial part. Nefesh, I think in the King James, is translated by 21 or 22 different English words but it's always the immaterial part, the inner person, the soul, the spirit and God literally took that form, that physical form made out of chemical components and breathed into it life so that man became nefesh, like other living things but much higher because it was life in the image of God. And so I Corinthians 15:45 says, "The first man, Adam, was made a living soul." Folks, there's evolution here. There's no time here. There's no process. There's no mutating. There's no survival of the fittest. There was no pre-Atomic man of any kind. There is no pre-human man. There is no transitional man. And I'm telling you, I am constantly amazed and I supposed amused the bizarre, unfounded, confused machinations of evolution that have created nothing but an inexplicable, irrational, improvable, chaotic, complex of tangled schemes to explain what God said in one verse. One verse. That's the creation of man.
Now, next time, I'm going to talk about the location of man. But that's all for tonight. Now, I told you, you're going to have to think with me on that one. Let's pray. Father, it's so wonderful to come to grips with the reality of what the Word is saying, to get down into the text and really grasp it. How thrilling it is to see all that You said and how it's unfolded so wonderfully when we look deeply into Your Word. Father, we are blessed, so greatly blessed that we, of all people on the face of the earth, will someday understand what it's like to live in a paradise, what it's like to live in a world without sin, a perfect paradise regained, the glories of eternal heaven. Father, we can't even imagine what it's going to be like when there's no sin, no curse and only delight and joy and fulfillment. Just the way it was, only even greater when You first created man. How sad we are that sin came. How glad we are that a Savior came to save sinners and we praise You and we thank You. Amen.