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CHAPTER ONE

 

The Eden Story

 

Before we take up subject we should look at the creation of Adam.  Adam was created and placed inside the Garden of Eden, the Garden of God the Father.  Adam was the Son of God. When he ate of the tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil at the advise of the Serpent a clever animal, Adam and Eve were fixed with the Selfish motives (the yetser ha Ra usually translated as tendency for evil) without balancing it with the service motive (the yetser ha Tov usually translated as tendency for good). These translations are misleading since for a good life one should have a balanced self assertion and a service mentality.  With the assertion of self alone Adam and Eve have turned themselves into demons taking advantage of every situation of anything and everyone within their association which would simply create and evil society which exploit one by the other. In contrast we see in God a balance.  The first appearance of YHVH to Moses was "I am, that I am" an assertion of self. This in association with Love turns itself to servanthood,  In the incarnation of the Son of God as a man, he came as a servant and gave himself even unto death in that service for humans.

 

If Adam and Eve then ate of the tree of Life, he would have lived ages after ages as demons. The usual presentation of the evangelists is that God was so angry that they were thrown out of the campus of God so that they may die. This is the angry God interpretation. In this case Adam was a slave who was to be working in His garden tilling and keeping. God would have considered driving him out as a good riddance and the death of Adam and family would have been welcome for the cosmos.

 

Many evangelicals still think of the situation as a master-slave relation.  It is true that was the understanding of the Jews.  Here is a quote I found in the internet: "But there is no such thing as freedom. We are all slaves, either to Christ or to Satan." 


Galatians 5:1  "It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery."

 

However the true story that is forgotten or kept secret is that Adam was God's son through the Holy Spirit which produced Adam.  So the relationship is as Father to Son. It was Jesus who finally brought out the relationship of man to God as Son and Father.  He taught mankind to pray "Our Father, who art in heaven"  It was Luke who tracing the lineage of Jesus ends up stating " …Adam, son of God" Luke 3:38.  If you miss that point and look at it as a relationship of the King to Servants or as Landlord to the serfs then the explanation would come out wrong.  The driving out of the Eden was not because God was angry or as a punishment, but because God so loved Adam and Eve that he did not want them to remain as demons eternally with a long long life.  He did not even want them to be like Angels who is now full fledged servants of the God family.  There are others even before the creation of earth who became Sons of God with a balanced knowledge able to distinguish between right and wrong. They live with God and rejoice in all His creation. They formed the Elohim along with YHVH their Father. All sons of God were created with total freedom of choice and will in all matters like God's begotten Son.  While the begotten Son shares in the essence of God itself and form part of the Trinity family, the others are part of emanations - the wider family of God.  This gave them much more freedom of choice that at any point they can will something that is not in consonance with the character and will of the God Essence Family. Thus we see that even the Sons of God committed sexual sin with Adamic daughters and fell from their position and is now kept in darkness awaiting judgement.  That should give you some background information of God and Cosmos which is in consonance with the Theology of the Eastern Churches.

 

 So God drove them out of the garden and granted them God's one day to live (which was a 1000 years) until he can be redeemed.  On the second day God walked out and saw that the whole earth was filled with humans and even their thoughts and imaginations were evil.  So he destroyed all mankind and saved only four pairs - Noah and his three children with their wives.  Then God reduced their life time to one tenth of a day to around 100 years. So we see no redemption or even hope of getting back to Eden until the coming of the Messiah.  Again notice that the aim as far as Adam and Eve and his early children were concerned, they just wanted to get back to the Garden of Eden.  Was that not heaven for Adam and Eve?  Every day they went on a walk with their Dad through the Garden. Here we have the first concept of Heaven.- Gan Eden.

 

There is another concept which is equally valid is that Eden was indeed a purgatory where the creatures were made perfect after their creation and then allowed to enter into heaven.   They could not live eternally nor die.  They were given an opportunity to become immortal through the eating of the fruit of the tree of life.  When they failed in this purgatorial process they were sent out into another dimension of purgatory with severe perfection process and possible redemption since Adam and Eve became demonic by fixing their sinful egoistic nature.. In this thought pattern, the earth and its society were created by the Adamic generation.  It is a state and place where pain and sufferings are created by the power of members of the Adam family themselves. Adain in Christ they are given the opportunity to eat of the fruit of the tree of life.  I have not seen any development of doctrines in this direction.  The general presentation is that Adam and Eve were babies who were being disciplined by the Father till they were adult to become Children of God with all divine right taking their place in Elohim. In a sense all life is a process of growth.

 

What happened when they were thrown out of Eden.  There were a group of early beings - vegetables, water creatures, flying air creatures, animals and humans.  They were subject to death after certain period.  The whole creation outside of Eden was subject to decay and death and were under strict physical laws leaving very little to uncertainty.  This was indeed Hell but they called it the wide world.  Into this came Adam family thrown out from their heaven - Gan Eden- and their God family,  to struggle along with other beings and find their destinies, subject to death with an age limit of 1000 years ( a day of the Lord).  Others on earth had length of life limits less than a 100 years according to our scientists according to the fossil data. If we are to believe the Jewish authorities since Adam and Eve were living inside the garden of Eden with vegetable food which nourished them well to the extent that there was even a tree the fruit of which was considered to give immortality.  Adam and Eve were giants in size also with excellent health.  The height of Adam was estimated as 60 cubits.  Much more than any giants in history.  The food outside Eden was not good enough to maintain the height and size that they gradually decreased in their size in height and weight and as the history opens after the flood they were of normal human size equivalent to those living in the outside world - the sons of men. 

 

But God did not leave them there and send them there only to die. The life time before dying was just a day of the Lord.  After all God was the father he had plans to get back Adamic humans fully redeemed back into Gan Eden to be with Him.  He loved them and love required them to die instead of living eternally in selfish, self centered world they created.  A society based only selfishness is hell indeed.  That is what Adam generated throughout generations. But God had his plan of of bringing them back to Gan Eden which was planned before the creation of the world - Plan B.   How to bring Sons and Daughters back home without violating their freedom? This involved death and something after the death.

 

The propensity for self preservation as expressed in the eating of the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil to grow fast and become like father God remained with them. This is what came to be known as the original sin which obviously were transmitted to all descendants of Adam and Eve through genetic DNA. They were avid gatherers of knowledge - arts and science.  And that is still with the children of Adam. They strongly expressed their self existence and the 'I am' without the servant hood aspect.

 

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Evidently the Kingdom of God is here on earth.  There have never been the concept of a life after death and return of the dead until late in the history of Israel.

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Election

This is not the redemption of Adam
This is only election.  God's process of redemption

 

What action did God make and what was the process of redemption until Jesus?. 
First we see an election of Abraham so that through him all the families of the earth was to be brought back to God.

 

Genesis 22:16 and said, "By Myself I have sworn, declares the LORD, because you have done this thing and have not withheld your son, your only son, 17indeed I will greatly bless you, and I will greatly multiply your seed as the stars of the heavens and as the sand which is on the seashore; and your seed shall possess the gate of their enemies. 18"In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice."

 

 

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Adam was sent out to die in the open earth out of Eden because he disobeyed God's command and now Abraham obeyed and that was the beginning of a possible solution to be started.Start of redemption.

           
Here God selects one person and a nation so that God could bring the redemption of mankind through them.  The process was, God himself to incarnate as man to bring gospel of salvation for all humans who lived in the past, living in the present and will live in future until all are reached.  Until that time God's redemption and its process will go on.  The choice of Abraham was the initiation of the process.

 

This was the role of Israel.  However, they wanted all the benefits of the election - all the special privileges but was disinclined to serve and bring all mankind back to God. One solid example is when Jonah refused to go and preach repentance to a gentile nation Nineveh.

 

Now all these are in the subconscious of every human in their collective consciousness and they constructed their models of heaven and hell.

 

The only model of Heaven was the Garden of Eden.  The only model of hell was the world outside of Eden into which Adam and Eve were to live awaiting redemption.  Thus both heaven and hell are on the earth.  The only hope of getting back into heaven was through death according to some plan of God, the details of which are not given to us in the Old Testament time nor in New Testament time in detail..

 

Judaism eventually offered a range of views on the afterlife essentially based of Eden and the wide world as you can see through the description of heaven and hell which we now take up.

 

What exactly was the role of the death in this redemptive process?  There are some who believe that death in the universe and on earth was introduced only after the fall of Adam. The Universe was created within God as an independent organism - it would imply that God has allowed freewill or freedom of action based on fixed physical and spiritual laws to the universe.  This is also true about every organic beings and units within the universe.  As long as they connect willingly to the ultimate source of life and energy death will not be for them.  But freedom an independence means ultimate death because these create an isolated system.  Isolated systems are subject to the law of decay and death.  This is essentially the law of entropy.  Death was indeed in existence outside of Eden.  That is why Adam and Eve were sent out. 

 

The high energy source of life is still in the Eden and especially on the Tree of life.  That is still a gated community, entrance to which is conditional. What was the process of redemption for Adam and Eve and their children - the Adamic race - who were thrown out in to the world outside of Eden with a fixed tendency for evil - the yetser ha Ra? Were they given the power to overcome that with their own freedom during the day of their life time or were they to find it beyond death.

 

Judaism had no solution for it when and how they could return to the Garden of Eden.  Their theology was only for this life outside of Eden, before death, here and now in this age.  At least it was so until their captivity and return. It was only during the time of the Prophets the thought of a life beyond the grave, the resurrection back with their own physical body and the grant of the entry into the Garden of Eden or Paradise came into focus.  Even then it was limited only to a limited few to enter the Paradise based on their own ability to choose righteousness.  Karma was the only way.  What happened to the other children of Adam who failed in their Karma to keep the law of God remained an unanswered question. Three solutions were proposed –


(1) leave them eternally in the prison under torture
(2) annihilation (destruction) and
(3) recycling of life to reincarnation giving addition lifetime. This recycling need not necessarily to bring the life back to earth since there are an infinite worlds of existence, which God has created.  It is better to call it "born again" rather than reincarnation which has already attained its meaning in terms of the Indian religions.

 

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This world is a Purgatory. We are just passing through.
You have a chance to be transformed in to the image of His Son now here.

 

The problem with the Judaic solution was that the sinful children of Adam have no help or method of overcoming their ego and sinful nature.  This was the purpose of the entry of God into history in incarnation.  Jesus the Son of God entered into human form to pay for the sins of the Adamic race and to give them freedom from sin and the freedom of choice.  Again the it left no detailed account of how the mankind as a whole could be bought back from the slavery of sin and what happened to those who failed to get the release on their free choice.  After death what happened to those who failed in their life time to choose right, still remained a problem.  But what the New Testament proclaims is that the cross reaches far beyond the material earthly life.  The Love of God reaches out beyond this Earthly Life.


 

 

 

 

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