Genesis 2:7-17    Man and the Garden of Eden

7 And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.

 

8 The LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden, and there He put the man whom He had formed. 9 And out of the ground the LORD God made every tree grow that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The tree of life was also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

 

10 Now a river went out of Eden to water the garden, and from there it parted and became four riverheads. 11 The name of the first is Pishon; it is the one which skirts the whole land of Havilah, where there is gold. 12 And the gold of that land is good. Bdellium and the onyx stone are there. 13 The name of the second river is Gihon; it is the one which goes around the whole land of Cush. 14 The name of the third river is Hiddekel; it is the one which goes toward the east of Assyria. The fourth river is the Euphrates.

 

15 Then the LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it. 16 And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, "Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; 17 but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die."     NKJV

 

Facts to consider in what is revealed in these verses:

Y      Here again Moses continues to use the term Yahowah Elohiym translated as LORD God.  This combination assures us that the One called Yahowah is the same as the creator identified as the plural Elohiym in Chapter 1.

Y      Man was formed from the dust of the ground.

Y      Life came directly from a special act of God as “God breathed life into the man’s nostrils the Breath of Life and man became a living being.”  As seen in [Genesis 7:22] where we learn that the Breath and Spirit of Life are together as it is called the “Breath of the Spirit of Life.”  And again in [John 6:63] Jesus tells us that “it is the Spirit Who gives life, the flesh profits nothing. The Words I speak to you are spirit and they are life.”

Y       Everything that was created was created at the spoken Word of God, and Jesus is the Word of God Who was with God in the beginning and was God. [John 1:1]

Y      God planted a garden eastward in Eden.  Remember at this time the waters were gathered into one place and the dry ground is all one continent, so the term “eastward in Eden” is appropriate since it was inland from the seas of waters.  It was into this garden that God placed the man He had made.  Also notice that the garden itself was not Eden, but was in Eden.

Y      God made every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food to grow in this garden.

Y      In the middle of the garden were two trees, the “Tree of Life,” and the “Tree of the Knowledge of Good & Evil.”

Y      A river went out of Eden to water the garden, it parted and became four riverheads.

 

Remember, since there was only one land mass and Moses is trying to relate it to the divided earth as we know it, he describes it by referring to present topography of the earth.

 

Rivers of Eden:
Pishon (means: increase), encompasses the whole land of Havilah (means: circle), where there is gold.  It is possible that this is a reference to the land of the Arabian peninsula since Havilah is one of the definitions found in the Brown - DriverBrigg’s Hebrew Lexicon as “a reference to a district in Arabia of the Ishmaelites named from the second son of Cush; probably the district of Kualan, in the northwestern part of Yemen.”

1.      Gihon (means: burst forth), is the one that encompasses the whole land of Cush which is in some translations identified as Ethiopia.

2.      Hiddekel (means: rapid), which goes to the east of Assyria which is in some translations identified as the Tigris River which does in fact run on the east of Assyria which today is called Iraq.

3.      Euphrates (means: fruitfulness), same as we know it today.

 

Y       God put the man into the garden of Eden with the job to tend and keep it.  The first Adam was a gardener, and the Second Adam (Jesus) was thought to be a gardener according to [John 20:15].

Y      God put two special trees in the middle of the garden for one reason only, and that was to give man a choice, and these trees became the focus of the first test of man’s freedom of choice, as God gave His first behavioral command forbidding only the one tree which was the Tree of the Knowledge of Good & Evil.  That commandment carried the death penalty.

Y      At this point man faces only one commandment from God:  “Do not eat from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good & Evil.”

Y      The commandment to be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth was not given until the woman was present.