It was not God’s original intention for man to die, but man is now put on probation. You see, man has a free will, and privilege always creates responsibility.
This is an axiomatic statement that is true. This man who is given a free will must be given a test to determine whether he will obey God or not.
“For in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.” Remember that man is a trinity, and he would have to die in a threefold way. Adam did not die physically until over nine hundred years after this, but God said, “In the day you eat, you shall die.” Death means separation, and Adam was separated from God spiritually the very day he ate, you may be sure of that.
Genesis 2:16-20 KJV
 And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:
 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.
 And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.
 And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.
 And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him.
And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the Garden you may freely eat:
As stated, before the Fall, man was vegetarian.
Verses 16 and 17 form a complete thought which needs to be read and understood as one statement to be fully understood. This is God’s first negative command to human beings, telling the man what he must not do.
This uses the Hebrew root word tsavah, the first time this concept is used in the Bible.
Even so, the command starts with what the man can do, which is practically anything else. Man is given the freedom to eat from every tree in the garden of Eden—except for one, single prohibition.
This statement echoes God’s words recorded in Genesis 1:29: that all types of seed-bearing plants and fruits from trees were provided for food.
God provides. That’s who He is; that’s built into His nature and identity. We as His people are provided for even when we don’t clearly see how our needs will be met.
We are provided for even when our God declares some seemingly good things off-limits to us, as He does with the man in the next verse. The fact that mankind disobeys the one, single, simple command we are given summarizes the Bible’s view of sin and salvation.
But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.
Thou shalt not eat of it thou shalt surely die — no reason assigned for the prohibition, but death was to be the punishment of disobedience. A positive command like this was not only the simplest and easiest, but the only trial to which their fidelity could be exposed.
As for the “evil,” that was obvious; however, it is the “good” on this tree that deceives much of the world. The “good” speaks of religion.
The definition of religion pertains to a system devised by men in order to bring about Salvation, to reach God, or to better oneself in some way. Because it is devised by man, it is unacceptable to God.
God’s answer to the dilemma of the human race is “Jesus Christ and Him Crucified” [I Cor. 1:23]): “for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die” speaks of spiritual death, which is separation from God.
Let it be understood that the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil was not the cause of Adam’s Fall. It was a failure to heed and obey the Word of God, which is the cause of every single failure.
Spiritual death ultimately brought on physical death, and has, in fact, filled the world with death, all because of the Fall of man.
The previous verse contains the first use in the Bible of the Hebrew root word for “command:” tsavah. Even so, that command to man began with a statement of permission. The man could eat freely from every tree in the garden.
God had graciously provided all of that for him. God is not placing man inside a tiny fence of rules: He’s locking evil inside a small box. God is allowing the man complete freedom in this new environment…with one exception.
Here, God provides a boundary for the man’s freedom. The command turns to the negative, the restriction: man must not eat from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. If he does, he will die. This simple prohibition underscores the Bible’s basic view of sin and salvation.
Mankind will not fall into sin because he fails to keep some impossibly long list of rules. Nor will humanity fail because the restrictions are too demanding. Given near-complete freedom, and one single restriction, humanity will still choose to sin and fall.
Knowing the outcome of the story as we do, this feels like a precarious moment. We are tempted to question God’s judgment.
Why place that tree in the garden in full view of the man?
Why allow even the possibility for disobedience right from the start of this brand new relationship with a brand new person?
Of course, we are not qualified to answer why in any great detail. However, the fact that God does this tells us some essential things about His character and the way in which He intends to be in relationship with human beings.
From the very beginning, God wanted a relationship based on His provision, our trust, and demonstrating that trust through obedience.
God’s proposition to the first man is fundamentally identical to what He will say to Moses’ first readers many years later: Obey, and I will give life and blessing. Disobey, and you will lose both (Deuteronomy 30:15–20.)
GOD’S FORESIGHT FOR MAN
And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.
The making of the woman, and institution of marriage.
It is not good for the man to be alone — In the midst of plenty and delights, he was conscious of feelings he could not gratify. To make him sensible of his wants, The phrase “and God saw that it was good” appears at various stages of His creative work (Genesis 1: 10 , 12 , 18 , 21 , 25).
The assessment of the creation as “very good” concludes the entire account (Genesis 1: 31). However, we now learn of a situation that is not good: the fact that the man should be alone.
This doesn’t mean that the idea of a companion for Adam suddenly presented itself to the Lord. God never intended that man should be alone. So God determines that He will make him an help meet for him.
This is not meant to infer that the creation of woman was an afterthought. There is no Plan of God that is incomplete! The word meet in this context carries with it the idea of “appropriate.”
Therefore the help to be provided for the man is someone who will serve as an appropriate companion. Thus something of the purpose for the creation of woman is already hinted at even before her creation takes place.
She will complete the man, helping him become what he would not be capable of becoming were he to remain alone. After seven evaluations of creation’s elements being “good,” we come to something that is not good: the solitary existence of the man.
We glean from this passage that God creates us to interact within a context of companionship and community of our own kind. This aspect of the human makeup also relates to the above-stated directives to multiply and replenish the earth.
We do so as we relate to mutual benefit in a wider circle of family, friends, and humanity as a whole. Our quality of life is found in relationships.
The divine assessment It is not good that the man should be alone therefore doesn’t count the fact that the man is technically not alone given that he already has the companionship of God and the creatures of the garden.
The assessment we see here must involve additional purpose of God that the man is unable to fulfill by himself. To “multiply, and replenish the earth” (Genesis 1:27, 28) won’t happen if there is only one human.
This description establishes both the woman’s similarity to the man and her equality with him. In the older English of the KJV, the word meet carries the idea of “appropriate” (compare Matthew 3:8).
The woman to be created will possess all the qualities of humanity and personhood that the man does and will likewise be distinct from every other animal or vegetable.
The description of her as a helper to the man in no way diminishes her dignity or standing, for “help” is a term also used to describe God in relation to people (see Exodus 18:4; Deuteronomy 33:29; Psalm 121:1, 2).
The woman will be equal in personhood though complementarily opposite in her procreative role.
For the first time in the Bible, we hear God describe something as “not good.” Until this point, God has seen everything He has made as good or very good, including the first man. All of the created world was perfect in form, function, and potential until this point.
Now something wasn’t right.
What’s especially interesting about this statement is that, at this point, God is wholly responsible for the state of the world. This is not after the fall of man, but before it.
Why, then, is something God created being called “not good?”
And by God Himself, no less?
In short, only God can be perfect. So, anything which is not God cannot be completely perfect. And, we have already seen God choose to create through a process of creation and modification (Genesis 1:9–12).
It is not only logically possible, but inevitable, that part of God’s creation will be less than perfect, in the sense that God is “perfect.”
What, exactly, is the problem which God intends to correct?
The man was alone. God didn’t design human beings to live in solitude. Specifically, marriage between man and woman was part of His plan for humanity from the very beginning, even before sin entered into the world.
God declares that He will make a helper that is fit, or suitable, or “corresponds to” the man. In other words, He will make another person like the man: another human built with the purpose of being the man’s helper and companion.
Some see the description of the first woman as the helper of the first man as demeaning. Some assume this means she is lesser in position or purpose. However, God often describes Himself with the same root word used here for helper: ‘ezer (Psalm 33:20; Psalm 70:5; Psalm 115:9). In any case, the woman will be provided to the man for his good. She is part of God’s provision to him, as he will be to her. God’s intention and design is for the man and woman to live and work and walk with Him together.
The following verses will also show that God intends humanity to see each other—not animals—as their true companions and equals. God will create animals for Adam to name, and point out that none of them are a suitable match for him.
ADAM AND THE ANIMAL WORLD
And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.
God brought unto Adam — not all the animals in existence, but those chiefly in his immediate neighborhood to be subservient to his use.
whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof — His powers of perception and intelligence were supernaturally enlarged to know the characters, habits, and uses of each species that was brought to him.
The animals and the fowls were created out of dust, exactly as man. Carried within the name that Adam gave to each one of these creatures are the characteristics of that particular animal or fowl.
So we are speaking here of a man who had amazing intelligence. To do all of this, Adam had to have a distinct knowledge of speech, the meaning of all words, and the capacity of attaching words to ideas.
Adam had the greatest Teacher that man has ever had, “the LORD God” The line out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field reflects what has already occurred on the sixth day of creation.
While the waters are said to have brought forth the various sea creatures and birds on the fifth day, all creatures are made from the ground or dust as noted in Psalm 104: 29. The man himself also has been formed “of the dust of the ground” by the Lord God.
But now we come to new information: all of the creatures that God has made are brought before Adam for naming by the man. We wonder if this naming procedure includes each and every subcategory of creature “after his kind”.
Some think that that would take too long for a single day, so they propose that Adam names only the broader categories of animals and birds rather than the much more numerous subcategories.
It is noteworthy that this verse includes the first time in the Genesis account that the name Adam appears. In the Hebrew text, the word Adam is actually the same as that which is translated “the man” in Genesis 2: 18 (the Hebrew language has no capital letters to designate proper names).
Of perhaps greater significance at this time is the fact that the name Adam comes from the Hebrew word meaning “ground” in Genesis 2: 7 . This calls attention to the material from which he is created.
The sequence of events here appears to differ from the account of creation in Genesis 1, in which the animals are created before humans. Questions have therefore arisen about the relationship between the two versions of the story.
A reasonable solution is that one chapter or the other presents a thematic account that is not intended to be taken as chronological. Yet another possibility is that Genesis 2 narrates an additional, special act of creation undertaken for the purpose of presenting the animals for naming.
The latter view has a very long history. Though the animals are formed from the ground just as the man is, none of them is created in God’s image.
By naming the animals, the man assigns a function and place to each one, thereby exercising the ruling authority that bearers of the divine image possess (Genesis 1:26). In the process of observing the animal world, Adam certainly recognizes that he is not like them; he undoubtedly realizes his superior nature.
This verse reveals another aspect of man’s purpose in the world God had made. The man was tasked with using his God-given authority and creativity in order to name the animals. The picture painted is powerful, empowering, and sweet, in a way.
We see God forming the wild animals and birds, bringing them into existence, and then, eventually, bringing them to the man to discover what the man would call them.
God seems to be taking pleasure watching the man accomplish this task. It appears that God is not directing the naming of the animals in any way; He is truly leaving it to the man to use his own creativity, judgment, and process to come up with these names.
And then God allows those names to stand as the animals’ true names. It is truly a privilege and honor which God bestows on this man, by allowing him to participate in the work of building and maintaining this new creation.
More than that, the act of naming something is meaningful in the book of Genesis. This act often implies rule over and responsibility for that thing. God has already instructed man to subdue the earth and rule over all of the creatures (Genesis 1:28). Having the man name the animals is another way of giving him responsibility to rule, subdue, and care for the animals.
This passage is also important in the context of verse 18, where God stated His intent to make a helper for the man. By bringing all the animals in person, God can emphasize the fact that none of them are suitable partners.
The man will be able to see, first-hand that no other created being is his equal. Only other people, male and female, are meant to be joined as “one flesh” (Genesis 2:23) and share that level of connection.
And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him.
But for Adam there was not found an help meet for him — The design of this singular scene was to show him that none of the living creatures he saw were on an equal footing with himself, and that while each class came with its mate of the same nature, form, and habits, he alone had no companion.
Besides, in giving names to them he was led to exercise his powers of speech and to prepare for social intercourse with his partner, a creature yet to be formed. We learn from this that the animal creation was of far greater magnitude and intelligence than at the present.
It was the Fall which changed that creation [Rom. 8:19-23]. Adam proceeds to name the various creatures. But in the process a sobering truth dawns. Although they come from the ground as he does, none is quite like him.
For Adam there was not found an help meet for him. Thus the state of being alone, which God has already said is “not good” for the man, is recognized by the man himself. Perhaps we have been wondering to this point why God doesn’t just name all the creatures himself.
This may be the reason : having Adam do the naming allows him to come to his own conclusion regarding his need. The text reveals that the parade of animals involves not only naming them but also searching among them for a suitable companion.
Even though all the animals are formed from the same material as the man and by the same good Creator, no animal is adequate as a proper help. We reasonably speculate that the man eventually becomes aware of what God already knows: none of the animals can stand beside the man as his equal, to partner with him in his assigned roles.
As Adam gives names to all cattle, and to the fowl . . . and to every beast, he presumably observes the complementary nature of male and female among them. For him, something is missing!
In the previous verse, God brought the animals to the man in order for him to name them. Whatever the man called them, God allowed that to stand as their name. This is a sign of great honor, since naming something in biblical times was a sign of ownership and authority.
God also seems to be taking pleasure in watching man use the intellect and creativity which makes him unique in creation (Genesis 1:26-27). The man gives names to all the livestock, birds, and wild animals.
And then, in this verse, the Bible calls the man by his name for the first time: Adam. Up until now, this unique creature has been referred to as hā’ ā’dām, literally meaning “the man.” This name reflects the dust from which we were formed: the Hebrew word for “ground” is adamah.
Here, however, the first human being is simply referred to as ā’dām, literally “Man,” now taking on the nature of a personal name.
The story-sense of verses 19 and 20 is that, as Adam was naming the animals and birds, he was looking for one that might serve as his helper and companion. It becomes clear that none of the animals are suitable (Genesis 2:20).
Adam needed someone who would “correspond” to him (Genesis 2:18). The fact that no animal suits this purpose is an important aspect of Scripture: humanity is truly distinctive, and meant for a truly unique relationship with other people.
I hope that you have really enjoyed this post,
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