[A Study of the vast supply of strength we have in receiving God's Holy Spirit into our lives. We are brought back to the original goal God had in mind for mankind when he first made Adam.]
Gen 1:27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
Gen 1:31 And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.
Adam was created on the sixth day of the week in Genesis 1. Eve was created the same day, also, since Genesis 5:2 tells us that God created Adam and his wife on the same day.
Gen 5:2 Male and female created he them; and blessed them, and called their name Adam, in the day when they were created.
Both humans at that time were named Adam. The woman was not called Eve at first. On the next day, the seventh day, we read that God rested from His labour.
Gen 2:1-2 Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. 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.
Genesis gives us the familiar account concerning Adam's transgression in the garden through the disobedience displayed in eating of the fruit from the forbidden tree. As a result, God cast him out from the garden. Could this have occurred the very day Adam was created?
Heb 4:1-4 Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it. For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it. For we which have believed do enter into rest, as he said, As I have sworn in my wrath, if they shall enter into my rest: although the works were finished from the foundation of the world. For he spake in a certain place of the seventh day on this wise, And God did rest the seventh day from all his works.
Hebrews 4 speaks of a REST. The context of the passage is a warning to believers today that we might not recognize that unbelief will keep us from entering the promise of God.
There is a promise that has been given to the Church concerning the opportunity to ENTER into a REST. Canaan was Israel's rest, as it were, as they were to journey into that land and thus fulfill their goal of the Exodus. God had freed them from Egyptian bondage and led them into a land in which they were to reign! What a contrast! They were to go from bondage to rulership!
Hebrews 3 explains how the land of Canaan was the goal which the nation of Israel sought so long ago. It was their land promised to them by God. However, their lack of faith in actually being able to obtain that land moved God to bar them out from it. This is a warning, says the writer of Hebrews, telling us that we likewise will not enter our rest that has been prepared for us by God in this New testament age if we also doubt. We do not have a literal LAND which God has promised us, but a rest in the Spirit. And if we doubt that we can enter such a rest, we are warned that we will be barred from ever entering it!
If we truly believe all of the Gospel, then we will be able to enter that rest. In this context, verse 4 shows the writer mentioning the seventh day when God rested. Then...
Heb 4:5 And in this place again, If they shall enter into my rest.
Psalm 95:11 is quoted in verse 5. This repeated reference to REST in the Old Testament must be recognized as a means by which God is trying to tell humanity a message. We must understand that there exists a rest into which God desires us to enter. God entered into that Rest on the seventh day, and evidently His will was that Adam likewise enter that same rest on the same day. It is God's rest and we are told to enter "my Rest" in Psalm 95:11.
When did He rest? If it is HIS rest, we must ask ourselves when He rested. We find that He rested the seventh day. Man did not enter that rest with Him, though. Why?
God wanted His people Israel to enter into a rest. However, they did not enter their rest due to unbelief. Then we read of another reference to entering a rest.
Heb 4:7 Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts.
This time the writer quotes from Psalm 95:7. In that verse of Psalm 95, David declared that "Today", in David's day, long after Israel failed to enter their rest, there was yet opportunity to enter God's rest. God's will remained set that the people enter rest with Him. We must understand that the book of Psalms was written long after Joshua finally did lead Israel into Canaan after the unbelieving adults died. Although Joshua led them in, they had not truly entered rest at that time. David would not have spoken of entering a rest had they actually entered it then.
The unbelief manifested at Kadesh Barnea, when the adults doubted that they could successfully enter and take the land, moved God to bar them out from the rest. The writer of Hebrews is telling us that, though the children of the doubting adults did enter the land forty years after the doubting at Kadesh Barnea, and though entrance was again possible after the doubters' deaths, God removed a blessing. In other words, Canaan would have been the REST for Israel had the adults not doubted. Their unbelief transformed Canaan from a rest of God into simply a land for the children to enter after the deaths of the adults. The children did not enter a rest. This is what the next few verses are trying to relate to us.
Heb 4:5-8 And in this place again, If they shall enter into my rest. [He quotes David in David's time.] Seeing therefore it remaineth that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief: Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts. [After such a long time since the children of Israel actually entered the land, David still said, "Today" you can enter a rest. Therefore, the rest had not been entered into yet at that time.] For if Jesus had given them rest, then would he not afterward have spoken of another day.
"Jesus" is Greek for JOSHUA. Although Joshua led the children of the doubters into Canaan, that land was no longer a rest of God for the people. If Joshua actually did lead them into a rest, David would not have told Israel in his day that a rest remained for God's people to enjoy and enter.
There was a blessing of rest in entering Canaan for the original members of the Exodus. Due to their unbelief, God removed the blessing . What a mighty work of God the people missed that day! The youth who entered later did not enter a rest. It was gone. A rest remains to be entered!
Heb 4:9 There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God.
This remaining rest seems to stil be available to all humanity since Hebrews is involving Israel's opportunity to enter into it along with our's today. Adam did not rest, obviously, for if he had rested there would have been no need to tell man to enter it in the great Exodus of Israel. All mankind would be born into this rest. Instead, though, we are born in sin.
It seems that Adam committed his sin the very day he was made, being the sixth day. Otherwise Adam would have remained sinless, due to having sinned that day, and would have entered into the rest on the next day, the seventh day. Adam was innocent before his sin. No sin existed in his flesh at that time. If it was God's will for man to enter His rest, according to Hebrews 4:4-5, surely Adam would have entered that rest on the day after his creation if Adam had not sinned by that time. What else could have kept Adam out of the Rest?
It was unbelief that kept Israel out of Canaan according to Hebrews 3:19 and 4:1. This was true in the Exodus and is still true today! It only stands to reason that Adam did not enter rest on the seventh day due to his own unbelief. And that unbelief was "contracted" by Adam when he ingested sin into his flesh by disobeying God. Unbelief is sin, and Adam sinned when he committed unbelief, so he must have sinned the day he was created. Adam must have lost his innocence before the seventh day. Only by having sin in his life during the commencement of the seventh day, God's rest, would Adam have not been able to enter therein.
The Hebrew day begins at sundown. God entered His rest when the sun went down after having created man and animals on the sixth day. When the light of the sixth day ended, the seventh day began. With this in mind, the words of Gen 3:8 confirm the thought that Adam sinned on the sixth day.
Gen 3:8 And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden.
The "cool of the day" is the closing minutes of sunlight on the sixth day just before the seventh day begins. God's voice walked in the garden in the cool of the day. Adam sinned in broad daylight, and God's voice approached him during the final moments of the same day, having need to deal with Adam's sin. He rebuked Adam and his wife, and cursed the woman and the ground, clothed Adam and his wife, and moved the sun to it's course into dusk, thus ending the sixth day. Then God entered His Rest as the seventh day began that evening.
What a sad way for God to have to enter into His rest! His will was that Adam and the woman enter that rest with Him. In fact, God made humanity with the intention of the people to enter His rest with Himself on the seventh day, but, lo, Adam spoiled the chance! He sinned. Had only Adam eaten from the tree of Life instead! It would have given him eternal life! Time would not have mattered to Adam, for eternality exists beyond the aspect of time. Eternal life would have pulsated within Adam's very flesh! Having such eternal life would have enabled Adam to enter into God's rest, having not sinned due to eating the tree of life instead. God gave access for Adam to eat of the tree of life (Gen. 2:16). And, notably, God mentioned a "day" when He referred to eating instead of the forbidden tree.
Gen 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.
Why stress the fact that Adam would die the very "day" he ate of the forbidden fruit? Of course, any day he ate of the fruit would have caused him to day that same day. Yet there may be a point God is stressing to us in mentioned a "day". It seems that this particular point also lends credence to the thought that Adam indeed did sin the very day he was created, before the seventh day.
CONTINUED IN PART 2