Continuing the discussion from No. Adam and Eve were not the first humans: this specific quote “Note that God needed someone (a man) to cultivate plants in the Garden of Eden.”
@mtp1032 Appears to assert that man was created to dig ditches.
While watching a debate and reading the Bible, a neat analogy came to me that addresses this topic. That man was created to tend to earth or dig ditches.
Gen 1:28 Says man is supposed to rule over animals. And to subdue the earth, meaning to conquer it and bring to subjection, it (the earth) does what we want it to do. If we want an irrigation ditch, we move the earth to build one. But then later in Gen 2:15 God put man in the garden to work it and take care of it. So is our purpose (or God’s motivation to create man) to tend to the earth, or to rule animals, or to dig ditches?
Which brings me to me golf analogy to attempt to explain this. If we were created to play golf, God would have placed us on the tee box at hole 1, day 1 of the Masters competition. And in the written account said “we were placed on the tee box of hole 1”. God is our golf/swing coach, and taught us how to swing and we need to trust Him for our best swing. He gave us the rule over our clubs of choice, whether to choose the 9 iron, or the driver, or the putter. We have the capacity to learn different techniques to hit the ball out of the sand tap or in the rough, but it is designed to be played in the greens and fairways. Our main goal/purpose was to play golf, just the experience of it. Not even to get a low score, just to play.
And we never happened to score lower, when we used our rule to chose which club, and when we listened to our swing coach. We always stayed in the fairway and on the green. Even though the low score wasn’t out intent, it was an outcome. But in seeing this low score as outcome, we decided we didn’t need our swing coach, and that we don’t just want to play, we want to win, we want to get the lowest score possible. We did this by getting newer equipment. Our wood shafts changed to iron and graphite, our balls went from hunks of rubber to scientifically engineered composites. Sometimes in attempt to hit farther, we would try so hard in our swing, we would end up in the rough and sand trap. So we learned how to hit fairly well from both and actually got pretty good at it. And though we do pretty decent with this new techniques and materials.
Had we just listened to our swing coach, and ended up on fairways and greens only with our wooden shafts, we would still have got lower scores than we are now, and would enjoy it much better. Even though we were placed on hold one, this doesn’t mean our intent and purpose in life was to stay on the tee box forever. Our purpose was always to learn to trust in our swing coach. Even given the authority to rule over our choice of clubs, and to demonstrate our trust in our swing coach via the game of golf, it was always to trust our swing coach. So golf is more of a method to demonstrate our trust, rather than the purpose for being placed on the tee box.
So the swing coach sent His Son to show us how it is to be played. Not in anger or pride, announcing He is the best golfer ever we should all beg to caddy for Him and clean His balls and carry His clubs. But in humility and servanthood, offering to carry other clubs or wash their balls. He was willing to give swing tips to those who asked, but these tips were not revolutionary, rather the same ones the Father taught Him. But were in the past we understood it as ‘keep your head down’, was actually just saying ‘spinal alignment is important’. And He demonstrated that this type of game play with a wooden club and listening to the swing coach, will not only result in the lowest score (which is an added bonus), but how to enjoy the game of golf. IF we in our heats want to follow the swing coach, though we know there are many times we will chose to swing our own way, we ultimately understand that His way is better and want to do it His way.
But when there is a tree in our way, and we want to attempt to fade around it, and how if we achieved this, it would land on the green. God says, just layup, stay on, or get back to the fairway, and you will enjoy it more. But I want to fade it, though I know He knows better, it is so hard to not do what I see as an obvious better way for the time being. And then when getting to the 18th hole, taking all his balls and throwing them in the water. He could not finish the 18th hole and other could now have a lower score than He did. He took all the disappointment the swing coach had when we didn’t follow His techniques and recommendations, by not even following the rules of gold which greatly disappointed the golf coach momentarily. But when we play this game, if we trust the swing coach as His Son taught us to do, we would enjoy golf AND have lower scores.
So God is obviously the swing coach, who created us in the garden of Eden (tee box of hole 1). The method to demonstrate our trust in him is the game of golf, we know it as life, it was written in Gen 2:15 to say “work and take care of it”. Ruling over animals, is the golfer ruling over club choice. Eating animals and working them hard, is us choosing graphite and irons and composite balls. the capacity to learn how to hit from the sand trap was the apple, it is unnecessary knowledge (knowledge of rough and fairway) as opposed to tree of life (the technique of playing greens and fairways). If we just trusted God, we wouldn’t end up in the sand trap.
Ending up in the rough and sand trap, is falling from the garden of Eden, or any consequence of choosing our own will and desires over the designs of the Father. Tee box 1 of round 1 in the Masters is the garden with Adam, the tee box 1 at the second round of the Masters is when Jesus showed us how to play, tee box 1 in round 3 of the Masters is when you and I are born. Round 4 of the Masters will be heaven. If we didn’t have a swing coach that taught us how to play, we wouldn’t be on the course in the first place. Until the opportunity to not listen to our swing coach arises, we can’t dis-obey. We are born sinless, it isn’t until God tells us to swing a certain way or play a certain way that we decide we can do better ourselves that we sin.
The desire to play our own way is the fall of man, our sin nature, our biology. Thinking we have a better understanding of our own swing and can tweak it to obtain better results. The Son is also the Son obviously. Who also obviously showed us the way to play, with which to enjoy it the most, and to get the lowest scores. Jesus taught us how to listen to God, nothing revolutionary, but not to get angry (spinal alignment) with your brother, how that is as bad as murder (keep your head down), as it was always about the heart, not the actions. Allowing the Father to rule over us will allow us to not only enjoy life more, but also do better in it. I was struggling to equate the atoning of our sins. But He put Himself lower, to make us appear higher.
He took our sins, in a way that He Himself committed our sins. The disappointment God has when we chose our ways, all of this was placed on Jesus Mark 15:24, Matt 27:46. He took all of our disrespect on Him, so when we chose our own way, we are no longer disappointing Him, as all that disappointment was poured on Jesus. The fading around the tree alludes to Paul’s Rom 7:15 speech. We need the Holy Spirit’s intervention to help us chose the right way, as it looks so evident to us at the time that our way is better. Should we cheat on the bar test? If only I pass, I can learn it better, but now I will have a lawyer license and be able to do good things for God. We sometimes disguise a bad thing as if we are doing it to help God. Or if I talk bad about this person to my boss (whether it was true or not), I will get the promotion and not him. With my extra earnings, I will tithe more or give to the poor. We instead need to stop reaching for the ends and trying to control them, and live in the means. God says we are not to lie, this should be all we need. Did Jacob really need to lie about being Isaac to gain the birthright (promise of billions of offspring) that was already promised to him by God? No, and when he took it into his own hands, it caused a rift between him and his brother for years. Later Jacob realized this when he blessed Ephraim and Manasseh. Though traditionally, it goes to the firstborn, it ultimately goes to the one who God says.
This is why Jacob switched his hands last minute, in demonstrating understanding of this. But if a great man like Jacob did it, I’m sure we will too, try to take into our own hands, what God already might have promised us.
That is why I said what I said in the original thread or where I got what I got (as it seemed to perplex @mtp1032 as to how I derived that from that) , the entire context of the Bible, not just a few passages. Surely, if you read that above analogy, you didn’t come to the conclusion our purpose is to remain in the tee box of hole 1 for our lives, though it literally might say “we were placed on the tee box of hole 1”.
That is what I believe is the Christian or biblical meaning and purpose for life. that God created us, not robots, He wanted us to have free will, and the way to demonstrate this free will, would be to place us in this world, and have a life, where we would come to forks in the road with whether to trust God’s rule, or our own. And that we were originally created to subdue the earth, and the rule over animals. Since we were created in His image, He is one who rules our lives. In that He knows what is best for us, and we would be better off to trust that, but aren’t required to believe that, there are consequences when we don’t trust Him. We are to use our gifts that He blessed us with the protect the animals from each other, and rule over them with as much authority and love and He rules over us. We are also given the ability to create things and tools to help s protect animals and to get work done and subdue the earth. In using tools to subdue the earth, we can take care of some of our needs. BUT we must first recognize that God gave us this intellect and ability to make these tools, so though we are providing for ourselves directly, God deserves all the glory, as He is always indirectly taking care of our needs. And sometimes He does directly take care of our needs.
But we need to know that He will take take of our needs, and to trust Him to, even when we can’t see it happening necessarily. If man never fell, then this is how it would still be. This is how I think it will be in heaven. Us using our gifts to glorify Him, in living a ‘normal’ life.
The only other thing this doesn’t really cover, is the need for a companion for man. We were also created to relate among our selves. And how we can help provide for others at times when they can’t. This is also God providing for us indirectly through His means and networks.
Which I do believed this is summed up in the two greatest commandments. To love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind, and soul, and to love your neighbor as yourself. To trust in his rule first, and to relate to others. This is also how Jesus lived. He didn’t compromise the rule of God, yet He also related to humans and ate with them and healed them and empathized with them/us.
It is actually very simple in theory when you boil it down.