In the beginning, God put two trees in the middle of the garden Eden: the tree of the Knowledge of good and evil, and the tree of life.
Tree of Life
Genesis does not provide us much description about the tree of life. We know that it stands beside the tree of death, which means it is equally accessible to man. So accessible that God had to cast Man out of the Garden of Eden in order to deny their access to it.
Gen 3:22-24 [NIV]
22And the LORD God said, “The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.” 23So the LORD God banished him from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he had been taken. 24After he drove the man out, he placed on the east side of the Garden of Eden cherubim and a flaming sword flashing back and forth to guard the way to the tree of life.
“Man became like one of us.” In this likeness of God, the fullness is not hinted. Judgment, or reckoning good and evil, is only one of God’s attributes. It does not amount to His wisdom when deprived of His goodness as a father.
Imagine that you have a large family and run a corporation. You dream is to someday hand the business to your son. In the meantime, you give him small tasks to oversee so that he can grow in wisdom and understanding, so that one day he can apply all of this knowledge to running the entire corporate empire. However, in the process of training him up by giving him ever-increasing responsibilities, he goes crazy with power, telling everyone that he works with that he’s the owner of this business and he’ll do things his way. He goes against the wisdom of proper management in a way that hurts the business. What would you do? You love this son and you want the best for him, but you can’t hand over the company to someone like this. He would destroy it. So perhaps, you would give him some small part of the company to work in and come up with a new plan for your business, knowing that this son that you love cannot handle the inheritance you had hoped to give him.
That is what happened to Adam and Eve in the beginning. They were cast out of God’s family and had their Sonship denied. With the absence of the tree of life, they then were denied eternal life as well, which was an innate part of their inheritance. (We will expound more on this when we talk about Sonship in the coming days.)
This post is _Part 3_ in a series on The Cross. To continue with this series, click on Part 4. To use this as a growth tool to better understand your own calling, you might start by reading the explanation of this series and then read Pt 1 and Pt 2.
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