Man's first home
Gen. 2:8 "And the LORD God planted a garden eastward in
Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed. 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. 10 And a river went
out of Eden to water the garden; and from thence it was parted, and
became into four heads."
was in this Garden of Eden that man had his first home which was given
to him of God. Here man had a plentiful supply of food. He also had a
very pleasant surrounding. There were two significant trees that were
in the midst of this garden which we will learn much more about later.
Also, this was a very fertile spot of land as there was a river which
watered the garden. God had prepared a natural physical paradise for
the man whom he had created.
Assigned to Adam in the Garden
Gen. 2:15 "And the LORD God took the man, and put him
into the Garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it."
While we do not know the size of the Garden of Eden, yet we do know that
there was every tree that was good for food and pleasant to the eyes in
the Garden. This must have been quite a few trees. The effort to dress
a garden of trees of this size and to keep that garden in good would
have been considerable. God did not intend for Adam to be lazy, but to
be busy. Slothfulness is spoken against in the scriptures. Paul wrote:
2 Th. 3:10 "For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that
if any would not work, neither should he eat."
The rivers and their courses
2:10 "And a river went out of Eden to water the garden; and from thence
it was parted, and became into four heads. 11 The name of the first is Pison: that is it which compasseth the whole land of Havilah, where
there is gold; 12 And the gold of that land is good: there is bdellium
and the onyx stone. 13 And the name of the second river is Gihon: the
same is it that compasseth the whole land of Ethiopia. 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."
glance we may not see much significance to the details given us
concerning the above rivers and their courses. For the most part we do
not read much in the scriptures after this about these rivers, nor of
some of the lands. However, there is no wasted space or filler in the
scriptures. There is a significance of every word. Just because we may
understand that significance does not mean that each word is not
important. The key to unlocking some of the significance of the above
passage is found in the meaning of the names and the significance of
when we think of a river we think of streams or smaller rivers flowing
into the larger river. The river mentioned above, however, parts and
forms four other rivers. Ps. 46:4 speaks of such a river, “there is a
river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God, the holy
place of the tabernacles of the most High.” This river had streams
coming out of it that caused the city of God (church) to rejoice.
`The word, Eden, means “delight.” The Lord delights to save
his people from their sins. The
first head of the parted river is “Pison.” The word, “Pison,” means
“freely flowing.” God’s grace is free and flows down from God to his
elect people. This river compassed the “whole land of Havilah.” Havilah
means “circle.” In the scriptures a circle is a symbol of a covenant. In
the covenant of redemption set forth in Rom. 8:29, 30, those that God
foreknew, he predestinated; and those he predestinated, he called; and
those he called, he justified; and those he justified, he glorified.
Thus all He chose before the foundation of the world are completely
encompassed by the grace of God freely flowing from God and imparted
unto us by the Holy Spirit.
of the second river is “Gihon” which means “stream.” This river
completely encompassed the land of “Ethiopia.” The word, Ethiopia, means
“black.” Black is the bible color associated with sin. The atoning blood
of Jesus is as a stream atoning for all the sins of all his elect
people: “elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, thru
sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and the sprinkling of the
blood of Jesus Christ” (1 Pet. 1:2).
The name of the third river was “Hiddekel” which means
“rapid.” This river flowed to the “east” of Assyria. East is the bible
direction of sin. Also “Assyria” means “plain.” In Eph. 2:1 we read,
“you hath he quickened who were dead in trespasses and sins.” The Holy
Spirit as a (rapid) river reaches down and quickens us (gives us
spiritual life) when we were dead in trespasses and sins (absent of
spiritual life). This is the marvelous work of the Holy Spirit causing
us to be born again.
The name of the fourth river is Euphrates, meaning “bursting” or “sweet.” The gospel or good news
comes to those whom God elected and the Holy Spirit quickened and is
indeed bursting or sweet news to the child of God who has come to
realize his own condemnation and felt the depravity of his heart. This
sweet news refreshes his soul and causes him to have hope of eternal
life thru the redeeming blood of Jesus.
Surely these four streams of God’s grace,
redemption, new birth, and the gospel flow out from God’s delight to
save his people from their sins and make glad the city of God (his
church) which is the holy place of his tabernacles.