Monday, April 25, 2005

mercy cast them out

I am doing a Bible study with some of my friends from a book called Courageous Love: A Bible Study on Holiness for Women by Stacy Mitch. The second chapter is on the dignity of women, and so far it has dwelt mostly in the earliest chapters of Genesis. One of the interesting questions was a reflection on Genesis 3:23-24.

-----The LORD God therefore banished him from the garden of Eden,
-----to till the ground from which he had been taken.
-----When he expelled the man, he settled him east of the garden of Eden;
-----and he stationed the cherubim and the fiery revolving sword,
-----to guard the way to the tree of life.

Genesis 3:23-24

The question after reading those versed asked something to the effect of why did God station the cherubim with the flaming sword the guard the way to the tree of life and what does that say about His mercy?

At first I was a bit taken aback by the question and thought it was implying that God is not merciful but then I thought about it more and realized the beauty behind God's actions.

So man is in the state of sin now because the rejection in the garden. And now we, as human beings, are doomed to live lives of pain and toil, full of sin and God puts an angel with a flaming sword in front of the tree of life so that Adam and Eve will not be able to return to it and live forever. God is not punishing them by this but showing them His mercy. After all, who wants to live forever in this earth when Paradise awaits us in Heaven?

But had they not sinned, the tree of life would have allowed them to live forever in Paradise with God on earth, which was His plan in the beginning.

So God's mercy prevails, even in the seemingly harsh verses of the Old Testament.

Lord, thank You for Your mercy. Thank You for sending us Your Son to redeem us and allow us the enter Paradise with You!

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