"GOD CREATED MAN IN HIS OWN IMAGE"
--JANUARY 12.--GENESIS 1:26-2:25; PSALM 8.--
HOW DIFFERENT the statement respecting man's creation from that describing the creation of plants and the lower animals which the seas and the earth brought forth! Man's creation was premeditated. In advance, God designed man to be the king over the Earth, having dominion over fish and fowl and beasts, even as his Creator has the supreme dominion of the Universe. He was to be his Creator's image, not in physical form, but in moral and intellectual qualities. He was not to be of the Divine nature, but of human nature-- a fleshly being resembling his Creator, a Spirit Being. This intention of Deity was fully carried out in man's creation. As we read, "God created man in His own image; in the image of God created He him; male and female created he them." Not a word here can be construed as in any sense implying the evolution of man from the lower creatures.
A FALL, NOT AN EVOLUTION
So far from teaching an evolution, the Bible teaches the very reverse, both in the Old and in the New Testament. St. Paul declares, By one man's disobedience sin entered into the world, and death as the result of sin. Thus death passed upon all men, because all are sinners. (Romans 5:12.) The Prophet David refers to this fallen condition and queries respecting God's mercy in providing for man a redemption and restoration to Divine favor, saying, "What is man, that Thou art mindful of him?" (Psalm 8:4.) He then proceeds briefly to picture man's glorious condition before he fell, saying, "Thou madest him a little lower than the angels. Thou crownest him with glory and honor and didst set him over the works of Thy hands." Later he describes man's dominion as related to beasts of the field, fowl of the air and fish of the sea.
In a word, the Bible represents man as the crowning masterpiece of mundane creation. The seal of God's Word is set to this in the statement that God pronounced him "very good." This is also implied in the statement that God created him in His image, for the Scriptures declare, "All His work is perfect." Nor could we for a moment esteem it just or right that any but a perfect being should be placed on trial for life or death everlasting.
NOT TWO CREATION ACCOUNTS
Higher Critics, anxious to discredit the Bible, claim that the Second Chapter of Genesis is another account of the whole creation written by a different person. They claim that it gives a different order of creation, showing man created first, and then trees, beasts, etc. To us this is all foolishness. Moses, having described creation in its logical order, merely emphasizes and particularizes some of his previous statements.
He declares (Genesis 2:4) that he has already described the generation or developments of things heavenly and earthly from the beginning, before there was any plant life. Incidentally he mentions that at that time there was no rain--before the flood. He again assures us that man was God's last creation, to be the king or supervisor of earth. Then, much to our satisfaction, Moses proceeds to give an account of the specialty of man's creation, so different from that of the lower animals and vegetation. He was not evolved, but was God's handiwork. He was not spirit, but flesh, formed of the dust of the ground. But still he had the spirit of life common to all the lower creatures, of whom he was the head or king. The Hebrew reads, literally, "In his nostrils the breath of lives"--the breath or spirit of life common to all breathing creatures.
Then a description of Eden follows, how God particularly supervised its preparation as the home of the king of earth, in which God placed him. Nothing in this implies that Eden was made after Adam's creation. On the contrary, we have already been informed that God's creative work ceased with the production of Mother Eve, and that since then He has rested or desisted from further mundane creation--leaving to His glorious Son, Messiah, the work of human redemption and restitution.-- Acts 3:19-21. [R5141 : page 373]
When we read (V. 19) that all animals that God had previously created were named by Adam, it would be foolish for us to suppose that the animals were a subsequent creation. This bringing of all creatures to Adam's attention implies his mastery of them all and leads up to the statement that in none of them was he able to find fellowship and companionship. God wished him to realize the need of a companion and wife before providing her.
MAN ORIGINALLY SEXLESS
The details of human creation imply that Adam lived in Eden some time alone and sexless. Some Bible students infer from the chronology that it was about two years from the time of Adam's creation until the expulsion from Eden under the death sentence. The cause for the division of Adam into two persons is stated; the earth was to be filled, populated with a race of his species, and amongst all the creatures none was suitable as a companion for him or fit to be his mate, and the mother of an offspring in his likeness.
Thus again is shown that Adam was distinctly different from apes and monkeys, and all the other creatures placed under his control. He was in the likeness of his Creator. Other Scriptures show us that after the earth shall have been filled with a population, it is the Divine purpose that the sex quality in humanity shall be dropped. Jesus' words are, "They that shall attain unto that Age (of perfection--future) will neither marry nor be given in marriage, but be like the angels of Heaven"--sexless. See Luke 20:34-36.
The division of Adam into two parts, male and female, left the headship with the male, but deprived him of some of his sympathetic qualities. His wife, predominating in the sympathetic tendencies, had in her perfection less of the masculine and aggressive traits; but the two were perfectly adapted to each other's needs and fulfilled each other's ideals. The fall from God's favor has affected [R5141 : page 374] both sexes and has disturbed the original balance and harmony, producing extremes of coarseness and effeminacy, destroying perfection and robbing the marriage relationship of much of its ideal happiness.
The Restitution or resurrection of the willing and obedient, to be brought about by Messiah's Kingdom, will not mean the restoration of sex perfections, but rather the gradual perfecting of each individual in the image and likeness of God in personal completeness, such as Adam possessed before his division.
The sex attractions having passed away, man will not be alone, as Adam was originally; for the earth will be full of human brethren, all in the image of God and in fullest fellowship of spirit, enjoying the world-wide Eden. Such a condition of things can be appreciated only as we take the Divine standpoint and realize the superior perfection of God and the angels in their sexless condition-- though always spoken of as masculine.
"BY ONE MAN'S DISOBEDIENCE"
Note the consistency of the Bible theory which necessitated the division of one man into male and female. God purposed that the entire race must proceed from the one man. He foresaw sin and how He would permit it to flourish, and how He would provide for man's recovery. If two or more separate individuals had sinned and involved the race, it would have required just as many redeemers, according to the Divine Law, "An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth," a man's life for a man's life. (Deut. 19:21.) Because God from the beginning intended only one Lamb of God, one glorious Redeemer, therefore the entire race sprang from the one man Adam, that "as by a man came death, by a man" should come "the resurrection of the dead."--I Cor. 15:21.
SECOND ADAM AND SECOND EVE
We should not forget that Adam and Eve in some respects foreshadowed Christ and the Church. Jesus personally is the great Savior of mankind, whose death constitutes the Ransom-price for the sins of Adam and the entire race. He is to be the Great Life-Giver, or Father of mankind. During His Millennial Reign He will give back earthly life to Adam and as many of his race as will receive it--raising them gradually, more and more, out of sin and death conditions, up to perfection during that thousand years,--"the times of refreshing that shall come from the presence of the Lord,... the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all His holy prophets since the world began." (Acts 3:19 to 21.) This will be the glorious work of regenerating the world,--"whosoever will" may then drink the water of life freely.
But before beginning His work of regenerating the world, God has arranged that first from the wound in Christ's side, figuratively, an Elect Church shall be formed to be His companion and joint-heir in His Kingdom-- the second Eve, on the spirit plane, as He, the Heavenly One, is the Second Adam.
The Church will not be the Life-Giver or Father, but she will be the mother, or care-taker of the regenerated hosts of humanity during the Millennium. Under her care the willing and obedient will retain the image of God in the flesh.
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