Most people tend to think of God as some “Father Time” being that is portrayed on television – kind of like an old man with a long white beard, a long white robe, and a staff. Or sometimes they think of Him as a Spirit type being that is incomprehensible to the human mind. Regardless of how you picture God, did you know God was very active and physically present in a human type of way in the book of Genesis?
From the very beginning of the book, we see God speaking when He says, “Let there be light.” And God spoke again when He gave a direct command to Adam not to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. His speaking was an audible sound. Audible enough for Adam to hear it and, in some form of language, to communicate His purpose. What language did He speak? Only God knows. But God had to also physically show the tree to Adam. How would Adam have known one tree from another? The Bible says the trees were “pleasing to the eye and desirable for food”, so God had to point out the “bad” tree to Adam in order to help him to understand which one he should stay away from. God couldn’t hold Adam accountable for something he would not have known. So I fully believe that there was a taking to and a showing of the tree, which indicates an intimate human type of interaction.
Later in Chapter One and then in Chapter 2, we see God creating and “operating”, so to speak, on Adam when he takes a rib from him to create Eve. How did he cause a deep sleep to come upon Adam? Was it induced by some type of medicinal plant? Was it supernatural? The Bible doesn’t tell us. But it does say, “and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man’s ribs and closed up the place with flesh.” So it is a physical type of surgery. And it is a surgery that Adam knew about. He didnt’ just wake up and there was the woman and he went on with his day. Adam is noted as saying, “she is now bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh.” Indicating that he knew full well what had occurred. So either God told Adam ahead of time what He was doing, or after Adam awoke and saw the woman, God must have told him what had occurred. Either way, God is the “surgeon and creator” here, another intimate type of human- like interaction with His creation.
Then, in Chapter 3, we see God walking in the garden. We know He was physically walking because the Bible states “the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking.” In order to hear something, two surfaces must come into contact. So maybe it was God walking against the brush, or stepping on a twig. Again the Bible is not clear on how they heard Him, it just says, they “heard him walking in the Garden in the cool of the evening.” So God was in a physical type of form walking to find Adam to have a personal conversation with him.
Later in Chapter three, we see God making garments for Adam and Eve, which means he had to put to death an animal or two in order to use their skins for clothing. How did he do that? Did he physically kill the animal, or simply cause it’s heart to stop beating? The Bible, again, doesn’t tell us. But God had to kill the animal, skin the animal, dry the skins, in order to use the skins. He didn’t simply wrap Adam and Eve in the bloody hide of the animal He had just killed. This was a process. So here we see God in a laborer type of role.
So, you are probably asking yourself, what is the purpose of these examples? The examples are here to show the intimate type of relationship that man once had with God, to show that God walked and talked with man. To also show that God created man for His pleasure, and He desired to be with His creation. But because of man’s sin, God could no longer physically dwell with him because God cannot be a party to sin. And so, He sent them away from His perfect creation and put cherubim to guard the entrance so they could not return. But this was not the original plan of God. Man had altered that plan and had changed the perfect to the imperfect. Never again would this type of relationship occur. But God was not done with man. God had created another way for man to have an intimate relationship with him. And that was thru the birth, death, and resurrection of His son, Jesus Christ.