Genesis 2 - Outline of Genesis (Book Notes menu page)
2:1 Thus the heavens and the earth were finished,
and all the host of them.
{host - HB= tsaba, that which goes forth, armies.}
{ie., everything that proceeded from God's creative power.}
2:2 And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made;
and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made.
2:3 And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it
{HB=qadash, set it apart, made it holy}:
because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.
Day # 7 -
God rested - not due to weariness, but because His work of Creation was complete.
This is the basis of the Sabbath day. Ex 20:8-11
After sin entered into the world, God would not rest again, not even on the Sabbath day (cp. Joh 5:16,17), until His work of Redemption was complete (cp. Joh 19:30). The believer ceases from vainly attempting to merit acceptance before God and rests in the finished work of Christ in his behalf. Heb 4:1-10; 1:3; 10:12

2:4 These [are] the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created,
in the day that the LORD God made the earth and the heavens,
2:5 And every plant of the field before it was in the earth,
and every herb of the field before it grew:
for the LORD God had not caused it to rain upon the earth,
and [there was] not a man to till the ground.
2:6 But there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground.
2:7 And the LORD God formed man
{HB=adam} [of] the dust of the ground {HB=adamah},
and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.
The creation of man, a second look (v.4-25) -
This should not be viewed as a second account of general creation, but rather
as a more detailed account regarding the creation of man. This review is an example of -
The principle of Recapitulation in Bible interpretation:
  • The Bible text often gives a broad overview of several themes, touching briefly on less important themes, and then returning to further develop themes that are central to the Bible's purpose.
  • A primary purpose of the Bible is to lead us to God's salvation, in the Messiah, whom He provided through a specific family line. The scriptures continually narrow their focus to this line, leaving other families on the periphery. For example, Genesis can be outlined according to the several lists of 'generations' (ie., lists of descendants, or genealogies) which mark logical divisions in the book (see below). The patriarch named at the head of each list had many sons who are briefly mentioned, but not tracked by Scripture. However, the son, in the line to the Messiah, is the focus of the following section of the narrative. The descendants of two men who are not in this line (Ishmael & Esau) are given special attention, but far more attention is given to their brothers (Isaac & Jacob). The names in italics (below) are in the line of promise.
    The generations of...Book division (ref.)space used
    ...the heavens & the earth.1:1-2:6 (2:4)1 chapter
    ...Adam2:7-6:8 (5:1)4 ch.
    ...Noah6:9-9:293 ch.
    ...the sons of Noah10:1-11:91 ch.
    ...the sons of Shem11:10-261 ch.
    ...the sons of Terah (of Shem's line)
       (mostly re: Abraham)
    11:27-25:1114 ch.
    ...Ishmael (a son of Abraham)25:12-181 ch.
    ...Isaac (a son of Abraham)25:19-35:2910 ch.
    ...Esau (a son of Isaac)36:1-37:11 ch.
    ...Jacob (a son of Isaac)37:2-50:2623 ch.
the LORD God{Jehovah Elohim}...- Here, we are introduced to a new name of God.
  • Elohim- was the name used exclusively in 1:1-2:3. Elohim (plural) is derived from HB=El (strength) and/or HB=aloh (faithfulness, covenant keeping). ie., Elohim is the One who has the power to fulfill His Word. cp. Gen 1:3; Ex 13:19
  • Jehovah Elohim- (v.4-) The name Jehovah (YHWH) is derived from the verb ''to be'' (cp. Ex 3:14). He is the eternally self-existent One. This name is applied to God in His relationship with man, and especially in His covenant relationship to His people. {Compare the usage of the names Elohim (God) and Jehovah (LORD) in Gen 7:16; 1Sam 17:46,47; 2Chr 18:31}. Man alone of God's earthly creatures could grasp His self-existent nature, and our dependence upon Him and responsibility to Him.
    In ch. 2 & 3, the LORD God is seen as-
    1. the Creator of man. v.7-15
    2. the moral Authority over man. v.16,17
    3. the Governor of man's earthly relationships. v.18-25
    4. the Judge & Redeemer of man. 3:8-24
the LORD God... - (Here is the recapitulation of man's creation. v.7)
  1. formed man out of the dust of the ground-
    • Man {HB=adam} is of the earth {HB=adamah, red soil}. cp. 1Cor 15:47-49
    • Man became a living ''soul'' (HB=nephesh). v.7; cp. 1:24 (where 'creature' is 'nephesh')
      (In scripture, the word 'nephesh' only applies to man and animals, not to God.)
  2. breathed into {him} the breath of life-
    • The word 'breath' is analogous to the word 'spirit' (often, trans. from HB= ruach, spirit).
      Spirit (ruach) may refer to the essense of 'soul' life (in the realm of animals, cp. Gen 6:17; 7:15, where 'breath' is 'ruach'),
      or, to the essense of 'spirit' life (in the realm of God, cp. Job 33:4).
    • Because God gave man spiritual life, interpersonal relationship between God and man was made possible. cp. Prov 20:27; Zech 12:1; Joh 4:24; 2Pet 1:21 (the KJV often renders 'spirit' as 'ghost')
      Adam's sin would damage this interface for relationship, but the second Adam would restore it. cp. 1Cor 15:45; 1Cor 2:9-12
2:8 And the LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden;
and there he put the man whom he had formed.
2:9 And out of the ground made the LORD God to grow every tree
that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food;
the tree of life also in the midst of the garden,
and the tree of knowledge of good and evil.
2:10 And a river went out of Eden to water the garden;
and from thence it was parted, and became into four heads.
2:11 The name of the first [is] Pison:
that [is] it which compasseth the whole land of Havilah, where [there is] gold;
2:12 And the gold of that land [is] good: there [is] bdellium and the onyx stone.
2:13 And the name of the second river [is] Gihon:
the same [is] it that compasseth the whole land of Ethiopia.
2:14 And the name of the third river [is] Hiddekel:
that [is] it which goeth toward the east of Assyria.
And the fourth river [is] Euphrates.
The precise location of the garden of Eden is unknown today.
The identity of some of the rivers is uncertain. The known features would suggest the geographic area of modern day Iraq. The location is not critical to the message.
The name 'Eden' means 'delight.'
2:15 And the LORD God took the man,
and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.
2:16 And the LORD God commanded the man, saying,
Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:
2:17 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.
the LORD God commanded... -
Here, God establishes the first of 8 ''covenants'' in Scripture.
  • These are: the Edenic covenant (Gen 2:16); the Adamic (Gen 3:15); the Noahic (Gen 9:16); the Abrahamic (Gen 12:2,3); the Mosaic (Ex 19:5); the Palestinian (Deu 30:3); the Davidic (2Sam 7:16), and the New Covenant (Jer 31:31; Heb 8:8).
  • Each covenant establishes a relationship of responsibility of man to God, and of God to man. Many of the covenants are ''unconditional'' in that God made promises which He would keep, regardless of the actions of the men to whom the promise was given (ie., all of the responsibility was His). Other covenants are ''conditional'' requiring man to fulfill certain responsibilities.
the Edenic covenant - is conditional.
This covenant was in effect during the Dispensation of Innocence.
      This is the first of the seven dispensations (successive chronological periods with distinct differences in regard to man's responsibility toward God). The first four dispensations are introduced in the book of Genesis. We will take note of each new dispensation, as we come to it in the text. For an overview of these periods, see Lesson 2-The Seven Dispensations in the study called Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth (also accessible via the "Resource Menu"). You may return to this study in Genesis via the "Book Notes" button (at the top of this window).
     Beyond the tasks which God committed to man in Gen 1:28 and 2:15, man was responsible to obey one command (v.16,17). This was a test of his obedience.
The tree of life... the tree of the knowledge of good and evil -
  • These trees were both good to look at, and both good for food. cp. v.9; 3:6
    There was nothing poisonous or inherently corrupting about the forbidden tree.
    The 'death,' of which Adam was warned, was in the eating, not in the fruit.
  • Adam, created in the image & likeness of God, initially lived in harmony with God's will, but...
    -- Would he follow God's will when given another option?
    -- Would he believe God's Word when it was challenged?
    -- Would he defer to God's knowledge of good & evil?
    or, Would he disregard God's warning, to gain knowledge by experience (as a disobedient child learns the hard way the consequences of playing with fire)?
    (The second Adam would also be tested. But He would prove true. Joh 8:28,29; Heb 4:15)
in the day that you eat of it, you will surely die {'die' is doubled in HB text, lit., 'dying, thou shalt die'}-
Disobedience would result in -
  1. immediate Spiritual death.- To act contrary to God's Will would break the spiritual unity which Adam enjoyed with the Giver of life. Spiritual death is separation from God.
  2. eventual Physical death. - Most of Adam's 930 years followed his fall (5:5).
    Adam had life. God warned of death.
    We were dead. God offers life. cp. Eph 2:1; Col 2:13 ('to quicken' means 'to make alive')
the tree of life- will be discussed further at Gen 3:22,24.
2:18 And the LORD God said, [It is] not good that the man should be alone;
I will make him an help meet for him.
2:19 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.
2:20 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.
By the time Adam finished this task, he must have been aware that he was alone.
Among all the creatures which God had made, Adam could not find his counterpart.
There was no helper suitable for him, or corresponding to him. cp. 1Cor 11:8,9
2:21 And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept:
and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof;
2:22 And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman,
and brought her unto the man.
2:23 And Adam said, This [is] now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh:
she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.
2:24 Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife:
and they shall be one flesh.
2:25 And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.
the LORD God... took a rib... made a woman- Someone has observed that -
"God did not make her from his head: to be his superior.
God did not make her from his foot: to be his inferior.
God made her from his side: to be his companion, and equal."
Together, they were to share in the tasks which God had given to Adam.
Adam called her Woman {HB= ishah, wife, female},
because she was taken out of Man {HB= ish, husband, male} -
Adam marvelled at their perfect compatibility (v.23).
It is obvious that he recognized her as gift from God. cp. Prov 18:22; 19:14
they shall be one flesh- Marriage was instituted by God. cp. Heb 13:4
Like all else that God made, it was good. Trouble began when sin entered (ch.3).
Factors related to a healthy marriage-
  1. leave... father and mother-
    Husband & wife are to form a new family unit.
    Their responsibilities are first to each other.
    The authority in their home is not to be displaced by the authority of either set of parents. cp. Psa 45:10
  2. cleave- ie., cling to, hold to.
    Husband & wife are to separate themselves to each other, and from all others.
    cp. word usage in Deu 10:20; cp. Mal 2:14-16; Mat 19:3-6
  3. naked- ie., having nothing covered or hidden.
    Husband & wife are to be completely open with one another.
    This applies, not only to sexual intimacy (cp. Heb 13:4; 1Cor 7:2-5), but also to intimate communication of their thoughts, desires and purposes. The ''oneness'' of marriage is meant to extend to all areas of life.
  4. they were not ashamed- or, not perplexed, not confounded, not disappointed.
    Their marriage was well founded, and in contrast to most marriages today.
    cp. word usage, and the source of strength in Psa 22:5; Isa 50:7; Eze 36:32
Marriage is a ''type'' or picture of the relationship between Christ and His Bride.
  • Human marriage best illustrates that relationship when husband & wife fulfill the roles that He modeled for us, and for which He is able to equip us. Eph 5:25-33; 2Cor 11:2,3
  • As the woman brought sin & death upon Adam (ch.3; cp. 1Tim 2:13,14),
    so, it was because of the sin of those who would become His Bride, that Christ took sin & death upon Himself. But in contrast to Adam (whose death was the consequence of his own sin), Christ's death was redemptive.

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