So the reason the flesh behaves as it does isn't because the flesh has become evil or sinful by nature. Any christian that believes that is a walking contradiction. An oxymoron. Because there is no such thing as pagan christianity. And the belief that the flesh is evil or sinful by nature is a pagan, not a christian, concept. One that the pagan gnostic religion of Roman Catholicism and her daughters through the doctrine of original sin have fallen into.
Because you can't believe the flesh became evil from Adam eating the fruit God instructed him not to eat as these false religions teach. Because it didn't. Nor is it because it's nature has changed in any way from what it was when Adam was made. Because it hasn't.
The flesh thinks and behaves as it does because just like anything else, it is only concerned with those things it can relate to. Which are it's needs and wants. A very natural response from a very natural being. Not good. And not evil. This is what it means to be natural, and not spiritual. This is what it meant to be Adam.
And since Adam, man's natural response is contrary to the kind of evil that Paul speaks of in Rom.1:25-ff. Here Paul says man does not do the kind of evil that "changes the truth of God into a lie, and worships and serves the creature more than the Creator" by nature, but by choice. Because Paul says here in vs.26 that this kind of behavior comes only from the man that does what is against the nature God made man with.
And what we see in the Genesis account is that there was never any occasion for Adam to think about feeding anything but these natural God given needs and wants while he was still in the garden. That is, until something happens that causes man to consider.... his own mortality. Which is something Adam could never do while he lived in the garden while he had perpetual access to the tree of life.
So the only way God could get the man to think about spiritual things was for the man to do something for which God would send him from the garden. But, what would that be? What would have to happen that would cause the man to be sent from the garden? Does the Bible tell us? Yes, it does.
As long as he lived in the garden and ate from the tree of lifehis mortality would never become an issue. Because while in the garden every physical need was met. And his physical life was preserved by eating from the tree of life that was in the garden. So Adam's thoughts of his own mortality never came up.
So in God's plan He made Adam's living in the garden conditioned upon his never eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. But, God did tell Adam how he would die. He did not say He would send Adam from the garden if he ate it. He simply told Adam that if he ever ate the fruit that he would die.
This then is why Adam was sent from the garden after being equipped with the knowledge of good and evil. Because it was his no longer having access to the tree of life that caused him to die. And God also knew that now that he had this knowledge he was prepared to face his mortality.
So this is what caused Adam to begin to think of spiritual things. It was not a punishment for sin that would make him aware of his mortality as so many have been taught to believe. There was a completely different purpose in God's instructing Adam so that he would come to face it.
God's instructions to Adam about what he should and should not eat is the key. These instructions were to help him understand what would allow him to stay in the garden. And what would happen after the fact if he were to eat the fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
God knew that because He had made Adam without any knowledge of good and evil he was not able to discern between good and evil. And that without such knowledge Adam wouldn't know the difference between a right choice and a wrong one. This is why God placed the man in the garden of Eden. Because he was not yet equipped to live outside the garden.
This is why God made Adam's remaining in the garden conditional. If he did not eat so that he would still not have the knowledge of good and evil he could stay. If he ate so that he would have the knowledge of good and evil he would be sent from the garden. God did this because He knew that that information was necessary for living outside of the garden.
And what Peter says in 1Peter1:18-21 shows us that it was always God's plan that he would. Because here Peter says "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; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you, Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God."
This is also why in the narrative God did not tell Adam that death would be a punishment for disobeying Him. Those words were never spoken. In fact, Paul says in Rom.5:13 that Adam's sin was not imputed to him by God.
So the notion of punishment and penalty are nowhere found in the Genesis narrative, or anywhere else in the Bible for that matter, when referring to Adam. But, we only see the instructions as to what would happen so he would come to understand, after the fact, his need for a personal relationship with God.
When a person adds the notion of punishment or penalty for sin into the narrative they pervert the gospel. Through what is known as isegesis, which is to read into something which is not there, a lie is injected into the narrative from one's own preconceived ideas and beliefs.
By doing this here in Genesis men have twisted the story of man's beginnings so that it adversely effects the entirety of the scriptures. Twisting them to their own destruction just as Peter said some men do with Paul's teachings. This twisting is what introduced the world to the paganism that is the doctrine of original sin and sin nature.
But, if we will simply believe what is plainly written of the account we will not twist the scriptures. And we will know the real reason God gave these instructions to Adam. That it was so that after eating the fruit, and now having the knowledge of good and evil from which to discern such things, Adam would come to realize his own mortality.
He would also realize after hiding from God because he was afraid of Him, that God was not angry with him as he was now afraid that God would be. He would realize that God was not there to punish or kill him for his sin. But, only to instruct him now as preparation for living in his new surroundings.
This is why God told Adam that now he would work and sweat. And that only by the sweat of his brow would he reap the benefits from working the ground. And clothed them with animal skins that God lovingly provided for them because there were thorns and thistles that would tear at their skin in their new surroundings.
These were the loving instructions from their Creator, not curses, as so many falsely teach they were. Again, to believe these were curses it must be read into the scriptures. Because the scriptures never say this. Rather, these instructions were only the things he now needed to know to live successfully in his new surroundings.
Surroundings where there would no longer be any tree of life from which to eat. Surroundings where there were thorns and thistles that could tear at their skin unless it was protected. Surroundings where at some point Adam would experience the beauty that can only be found by considering his own mortality. Because in that consideration is when we learn to trust God.
And there was no break in Adam's relationship with God when he ate the fruit as some teach there was. God never stopped talking to Adam even after he was sent from the garden. In Gen.4,5 we see that God even spoke with Adam's children. Even when Adam hid from God because he was afraid it turned out that Adam was wrong about God's intentions.
So the natural relationship between God and the man did not change after the man left the garden. It was still only natural just as it had always been. And God still loved Adam just as He always had.
But, with the knowledge of good and evil Adam was now equipped to face his own mortality. And to come to understand why it was so important that he did. He came to know that only by doing so could he come to know and love, and have a personal relationship with, the God who made him.
Like Joseph's brothers, what satan intended for evil, God's plan by intentionally placing the tree of the knowledge of good and evil in the garden, and the serpent to tempt him to eat of it, would work out for our good.
How so? Because in God's plan He knew that satan would successfully tempt the man to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Because when he was tempted he had no knowledge of good or evil to use for a defense against temptation. This is how the serpent would get the man to eat from the fruit that would give him that knowledge.
And thinking that he would thwart God's plan by causing the man's death. What he actually did was put man on a path to a personal and loving relationship with God that only a spiritual man can have. It's almost funny how God has been out maneuvering satan for a very long time. And always for man's good.
It is important too that this would all be done by a free will choice made by the man. Even though he had no knowledge of good and evil. Because this choice would begin a chain of events whose end would culminate in our being made immortal. And heirs to God's kingdom.
A chain of events that Paul spoke of when he said, "Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory". 1Cor.15:51-55.
Peter confirming this by saying, "Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you:Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.
Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into." 1Peter1:10-12.
Peter shows us here that the plan of God was not complete for man to be made spiritual before Jesus came. But, that this would only come after Jesus conquered mortality by His resurrection. So that our need for God that could only be realized when faced with our own mortality would finally be met completely through the spiritual birth when we are born from above as Jesus said we must be to see the kingdom of God in John3:1-8.
This is what men should derive from the Biblical account of the events that took place in the beginning when God made man and put him in the garden of Eden. That it was to this end that God had planned for man to be made spiritual beings by a spiritual birth. So that by our own free will we would submit to God's plan for us. So we could enjoy true spiritual fellowship with the God who made us. And have the inheritance of His kingdom when we leave this mortal life behind.
Shedding the mortality that Adam was made with. To have our spirit that was birthed in us by God when we were born again, now clothed with a new immortal body, which will never know the corruption of death.
If you too have considered your own mortality and want the gift God has offered you, then all you need to do is believe this gospel and receive His gift of grace through faith which takes hold of God's gift of immortality. Receive His gift by confessing Jesus is Lord and that He has raised from the dead. Trust in Jesus as He showed us He trusted the Father saying, "Nevertheless, not my will but thy will be done".
God's will is that none should perish. And that all men will receive His gift of eternal life. Choose of your own free will to submit your will to His will today just as Jesus did, and this immortality will be yours. And through the new birth you will become His child and heir to His kingdom.
Do this... and I will see you there or in the air!
This message can also be heard at: Rumble
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