Hector Morrison – Adam: Priest in the Sanctuary of Eden

From Genesis 1:26 it is clear that Adam—and humanity—have royal status. They are to ‘rule…over all the earth.’ In Genesis 2, with a little exegetical digging, it seems equally clear that Adam also had a priestly role within creation and, in particular, in the garden of Eden. As Gordon Wenham says: ‘The garden of Eden is not viewed by the author of Genesis simply as a piece of farmland, but as an archetypal sanctuary, that is a place where God dwells and where man should worship him’. We consider briefly some of the evidence that points to the garden of Eden being an ‘archetypal sanctuary’.


God Walks in the Garden

It would appear from Genesis 3:8 that it was the Lord’s custom to walk in the garden in the cool of the day. The Hebrew for ‘cool’ is ruach. This is the same word used in 1:2 to designate the Spirit of God. By his Spirit, then, the Lord was present in the garden. And it looks as if he was in the habit of walking and talking with Adam at such times. The very same form of the Hebrew verb as is used here for walking is used elsewhere in the Pentateuch to describe the presence of God walking among his people in the tabernacle. For example, in Leviticus 26:12 the Lord makes this promise to Israel: ‘I will walk among you and be your God, and you will be my people’ (see also Deut. 23:14; cf. 2 Sam. 7:6–7). The Spirit was present as the God of Adam and, indeed, of all humanity, communing with humanity in Adam.

To continue reading Hector Morrison’s essay, click here.

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Derek Rishmawy – 9 Reasons the Garden of Eden Was a Temple

G.K. Beale is a bit of an expert on the subject of the Temple in biblical theology. He did happen to write a whole book on it. Given that, it’s unsurprising that he devotes some space to exploring the significance of the Temple in NT theology in his recent New Testament Biblical Theology: The Unfolding of the Old Testament in the New by sketching it’s structure and function in the OT. One of the more eye-opening claims he makes in this section is that the Bible pictures the Garden of Eden as the first Temple in the first creation. He gives 9 arguments/lines of reasoning for that point (pp. 617-621):

1. In the later OT the Temple was the place of God’s special presence where he made himself known and felt to Israel. That is exactly how his walking with Adam and Eve in the Garden is depicted. (Gen. 3:8)

To continue reading Derek Rishmawy’s article, click here.

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