PARTNERS WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT: PART II

The Book of Acts is not the first place or the second place when and where God’s Spirit partnered with man, and where God displayed His magnificent source of energy. The first man God partnered with was Adam. The first great act of God (Elohim) had His Spirit hover and move over the huge mass God turned into our universe. And then, Elohim created man to resemble the Gods to manage the world and to multiply. This author or these people believed in more than one God, who made a complete world, and all living beings, male and female, including man. Man had total autonomy and no interference from the Gods. Elohim created by command (God said) AaMeR and not DaBaR (WORD -LOGOS). According to the author of the Gospel of John, God’s command went to the Word, who then created everything (John 1:1-5). In Genesis One, God’s powerful Spirit (Ruach) was the creator and not the DaBaR or the Word (Logos). According to Jesus, the plural Elohim was a “Trinity” of “Three in One”: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19). We read:

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep; and the Spirit of God was moving over the face of the waters. And God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, one day (Genesis 1:1-5).

Then God (Elohim) said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.” So God created man in his own image of God he created him; 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 have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the air and over every living thing that moves upon the earth.” And God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit; you shall have them for food. And to every beast of the earth, to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, everything that has the breath of life, I have given every green plant for food.” And it was so. And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, a sixth day (Genesis 1:26-31).

THE SECOND ACCOUNT HAS YAHWEH ELOHIM (THE LORD GOD) IMPROVE MAN IN THE CREATION

The Yahweh writer was not content with the man in Genesis One. The man was like the gods: intelligent, independant, and creative. However, the man was not a son or a daughter of Yahweh, the head of the Gods. The first man was physically attractive. But the first man did not have the Spirit of Yahweh that could enable man to covenant and partner with God. By the time of Noah, the men with the Spirit of Yahweh intermarried with the daughters of men, and Yahweh did withdraw His Spirit from man (Genesis 6:1-3). For the Hebrews, and later for the Christians, Yahweh was God over all and over everything, and Adam was the first recipient of Yahweh’s Spirit (breath, ruach, spiritus, Geist). Yahweh, Himself, rolled up His sleeves! Yahweh made the earth, the heavens, the vegetation, the animals. And then, with a special effort, Yahweh made a man in whom He could plant His Spirit. God made and God just did not speak for things to come into being. From here on in, Yahweh did become involved in the Hebrew people. The Yahwehist even described the area where Abraham would come from and where Abraham would end up. Eden was located where Jerusalem is today.

In the day the LORD God (Yahweh Elohim) made the earth and the heavens, when no plant of the field was yet in the earth and no herb of the field had yet sprung up—for the LORD God had not caused it to rain upon the earth, and there was no man to till the ground; but a mist went up from the earth and watered the whole face of the ground—then the LORD God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life (ruach pneuma – spiritus); and man became a living being (nephesh – psyche – soul). And the LORD God planted a garden in Eden, in the east; and there he put the man whom he had formed. And out of the round the LORD God made to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food, the tree of life also in the midst of the garden and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

A river flowed out of Eden to water the garden, and there it divided and became four rivers. The name of he first is Pishon; it is the one which flows around the whole land of Havilah, where there is gold; and the gold of that land is good; bdellium and onyx stone are there. The name of the second river is Gihon; it is the one which flows around the whole land of Cush. And the name of the third river is Hiddekel, which flows east of Assyria. And the fourth river is the Euphrates (Genesis 2:4b-14).

Adam was lonely! And God does supply man with all the basic needs according to His grace and riches through His Son (Philippians 4:19). Under an induced sleep, God did operate on Adam and made him a precious helper and companion. And she became the mother of the human race that God loves.

Then the Lord God said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.” So out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the air, and brought them to man to see what he would call them; and whatever the man called every living creature, that was its name. The man gave names to all cattle, and to the birds of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for the man there was not found a helper fit for him. So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and while he slept took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh; and the rib which the LORD God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man. Then the man said, “This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.”

Therefore a man leaves his father and his mother and cleaves to his wife, and they become one flesh. And then and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed (Genesis 2:18-25).

ADAM — WHAT KIND OF A MAN WAS THE FATHER OF THE PRESENT HUMAN RACE?

Genesis Two has God make the world first, then man, then the animals, then the birds, then the fish, and then the woman. God, through His Spirit, who is an “Invisible Source” of insurmountable creative energy, has installed in man “His Spirit/His Breath,” and man became a miniature god (Psalm 82:6). That means man is an independent being, made up of two substances, earth and spirit. And man was endowed with the ability to choose, to procreate, and to govern himself. Like the Lord God, man has been entrusted with the seed of life in order to populate the world, which requires to be managed. Man, literally caries and sows the seed of life. The womb of the woman provides the environment where the sperm germinates, sprouts, and grows into a living being. Life is in the sperm before it develops into a living being. And the sperm is the “breath” and the “spirit” that God has planted in Adam, for him to pass it on. Every man should seriously think how he spreads the seed of life. Man is the most masterful creation of God in the entire universe (Psalm 8:4-9)! It was, and it still is, to man that God revealed His greatest Love through Jesus His Son (John 3:16; 15:13). The Psalmist could only but marvel about himself! And so should we!

For Thou didst form my inward parts, Thou didst knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise thee, for thou art fearful and wonderful (wonderfully made). Wonderful are Thy works! Thou knowest me right well; my frame was not hidden from thee, when I was being made in secret, intricately wrought in the depths of the earth. Thy eyes beheld my unformed substance; in Thy book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them. How precious to me are Thy thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! If I would count them, they are more than the sand. When I awake (come to the end), I am still with Thee (Psalm 139:13-18).

THE LORD GOD WARNED ADAM TO CURB HIS APPETITE

The Lord God (Yahweh Elohim) had apprehension about man’s willingness to control his appetite for desire, knowledge, and pleasure. To help man guard against being excessive, God issued a restrictive command. The command was a partnership Adam agreed to live by. To help Adam and Eve remember, God planted a poisonous tree (tree of knowledge of good and evil) in their bear sight. To enjoy any fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil would shorten their physical existence. It is important to note that the man, in Genesis One, was not restricted. It is something to think about? Restrictions are for our benefit and not for our harm; and therefore restrictions require obedience to the partnership with God.

The LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to till and keep it. And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, “You may freely eat of every tree of the garden; 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 die” (Genesis 2:15-17).

Eve, apparently, liked animals. And she was surprised that one friendly pet (the serpent) could speak, even reasoned, and made much sense. This harmless little serpent kept wondering, why Eve never picked any of its fruit and ate? When Eve explained that God put the fruit off limits, the serpent merely suggested that, what possible harm could that fruit cause? And the little pet was quite sure that God would not kill them. However, the serpent failed to mention that it would be man that will do the killing, and not God.

Now the serpent was more subtle than any other wild creature that the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree of the Garden’?” And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden; but God said, ‘You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.’” But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate; and she also gave some to her husband, and he also ate. Then the eyes of both, Adam and Eve, were opened, and they knew that they were naked. Therefore they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves aprons (Genesis 3:1-7).

Adam and Eve are a lesson for all of us. The Apostle Paul had a similar warning to the Corinthians. The Corinthians took it for granted that once they were Christians, that they were immune to bad influence and to false preachers and messengers of Christ. Paul had a similar problem with the Galatian believers. Jesus, Himself, told his disciples to be on guard against overly friendly eager companions.

Do not be deceived: “Bad company ruins good morals.” Come to your right mind, and sin no more. For some have no knowledge of God. I say this to your shame (I Corinthians 15:33-34).

And what I do I will continue to do, in order to undermine the claim of those who would like to claim that in their boasted mission they work on the same terms as we do. For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is not strange if his servants themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds (II Corinthians 11:12-15).

I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and turning to a different gospel — not that there is another gospel, but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to that which we preach to you, let him be accursed. As we have said before, so now I say again, If any one is preaching to you a gospel contrary to that which you received, let him be accursed’ (Galatians 1:6-9).

Lo, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves. Beware of men; for they will deliver you up to councils, and flog you in their synagogues, and you will be dragged before governors and kings for my sake, to bear testimony before them and the Gentiles. When they deliver you up, do not be anxious how you are to speak or what you are to say; for what you are to say will be given to you in that hour; for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you. Brother will deliver up brother to death, and the father his child, and children will rise against parents and have them put to death; and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But he who endures to the end will be saved. When they persecute you in one town, flee to the next; for truly, I say to you,, you will not have gone through all the towns of Israel, before the Son of man comes (Matthew 10:16-23).

THE PUNISHMENT FOR DISOBEYING THE LORD GOD WAS AND IS VERY COSTLY

Eden was like a kingdom in the world that already had separated itself from God. Adam and Eve were a protected species and they enjoyed the Presence of God and His Spirit. God and man were joined by an invisible umbilical cord, similar to the way a baby is joined to its mother’s womb, in its prenatal development. God too was helping man grow up. Man could hear God’s sound and God’s voice. Man did not have to make daily and instant decisions because his and her life was not/never at risk. But, when Eve preferred the counseling of Satan’s emissary, God rescinded His Presence and evicted Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden. God closed the entrance to the Presence of God (Garden of Eden) until Christ came and reopen it with God’s kingdom invading Satan’s world. However, and this was of paramount importance for man; God instituted a time limit with leaving His Spirit in man, so that man can reform himself while he still lives in the human body. Man became his own little god, in a world that satisfied his desires, but not his soul.   

And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden. But the LORD God called to man, and said to him, “Where are you?” And he said, “I heard the sound of thee in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.” He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?” The man said, “The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate.” Then the LORD God said to the woman, “What is this that you have done?” The woman said, “The serpent beguiled me, and I ate.” The LORD God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this cursed are you above all cattle, and above all wild animals; upon your belly you shall go, and dust you shall eat all the days of your life. I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.”

To the woman he said, “I will greatly multiply your pain in childbearing; in pain you shall bring forth children, yet your desire shall be for your husband and he shall rule over you.”

And to Adam he said, “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten of the tree of which I commanded you, ‘You shall not eat of it,’ cursed is the ground because of you; in toil you shall eat of it all the days of your life; thorns and thistles it shall bring forth to you; and you shall eat the plants of the field. In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread till you return to the ground, for out of you were taken; you are dust, and to dust you shall return.”

The man called his wife’s name Eve, because she was the mother of all living. And the LORD God made for Adam and for his wife garments of skins and clothed them. Then the LORD God said, Behold, the man has become like one of us, knowing good and evil; and now, lest he put forth his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever”—therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden to till the ground from which he was taken. He drove out the man; and at the east of the garden of Eden he placed the cherubim, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to guard the way to the tree of life (Genesis 3:8-24).