3 Adam and Eve in Eden
by Hubert F. Sturges, www.everlastingcovenant.com, December 2013
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. “ Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and
all the host of them. Genesis 1:31; 2:1
God created this world in
six twenty-four-hour days, a world with features and beauty that may
have been previously unknown. As the crowning act of His creation, God
created “man in His own image “ male and female created He them” (Gen.
1:27). Humans are material creatures, created in the image of God. God
equipped them with intelligence, free will, and awareness of themselves
and God. Built into this creation was the desire for fellowship with
God. Their intelligence was a function of their material brain, an organ
of seemingly unbounded capacity to learn and store new information. God
that humans would sin and that His Son would live on this earth as
a human and redeem humankind through His death. God gave Adam and Eve
superior intellect, which all humans-including the only begotten Son of
God-would need to recognize and resist evil. When Jesus came into this
world, He said: “Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body
hast thou prepared me” (Heb. 10:5).
Creation of Adam
Creation week on this earth was a time of intense interest and
excitement for all intelligent beings in the universe. Having witnessed
the beauty of the suns and stars, they watched as beauty appeared in
mountains, rivers, and seas, followed by stately trees, colorful
flowers, and lush waving grass. Next they saw living creatures
consisting of physical matter appear-creatures that could show affection
and learn new things. Finally, they watched as God created a being of
superior intelligence, made of physical substance like the animals but
in God’s very image.
All heaven took a deep and joyful interest
in the creation of the world and of man. Human beings were a new and
distinct order. They were made “in the image of God,” and it was the
Creator’s design that they should populate the earth. They were to live
in close communion with heaven, receiving power from the Source of all
God’s creative acts in making the world are unlike
anything humans have ever experienced. Yet, God constrained His creative
work into the six days of the creation week, as the Bible uses the
words, “and the evening and the morning,” to mark each day. This
expression shows that each day was a twenty- four-hour day, as we mark
We cannot explain the creation. No findings of
science can tell us how God created this earth. Evolution is an attempt
to explain how the earth created itself through eons of time without a
Designer. Yet, this requires more faith than accepting what the Bible
says: “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth” (Gen.
1:1). God does not reckon time as we do, but when He created this earth,
He did it in just six twenty-four-hour days.
We take the creation
of the earth by faith-a faith that originates from the beauty, design,
and order that makes life possible. We know little of how God worked in
creation; yet, the Psalmist tells us: “By the word of the Lord were the
heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth. For
he spake, and it was done; he commanded, and it stood fast” (Ps. 33:6,
On the sixth day, God created Adam.2
Earlier that same day,
He had created all the land animals. The Bible gives more written space
to the creation of man than to that of all other animal life. Even then,
the record is short, though it holds a depth of meaning. God did not
create this earth and then leave it to run on its own. Not only was all
the creation under God’s guiding laws, but God personally formed each
step in the creation and continued to guide and uphold the creation
And God said, Let us make man in our image, after
our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and
over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth,
and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. (Gen. 1:26)
And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed
into his nostrils the breath of life;
and man became a living soul.
That “the Lord God formed man of the dust of the
ground” means that he was made a physical being and not a spirit. The
account of how Adam began to live is simple: God “breathed into his
nostrils the breath of life” and Adam “became a living soul.”
Only God Can Make a Cell
Creating is an activity that only God
can do (Ps. 96:5). Men have walked on the moon and are now exploring
Mars, but we cannot fully explain how these celestial bodies move in
their orbits without colliding with other bodies. In the heavens beyond
are the sun, stars, and other heavenly bodies, about which we are just
beginning to learn.
On this earth, we see order, beauty, and a
system that was established to make life possible for all animal and
vegetable life, as well as for humankind.4
God is the creator of the
greatness of the starry heavens, the beauty of this earth, and the order
of every microscopic cell (Ps. 19:1-6).
The cells of all living
things are complex structures that scientists only partially understand.
Humans cannot make a cell, much less a living one. A number of necessary
parts make up each cell. The cell membrane holds the cell together yet
permits certain substances and particles to pass into the cell or to
pass out of it. The cell could not live or function without this
Inside the cell is a semi-liquid cytoplasm in which the
organelles are suspended and carry on their functions. This cytoplasm
contains food substances, vitamins, hormones, and proteins. Every cell
has a nucleus containing DNA, which is a complex molecule containing the
digital instructions for all parts and functions of the body. Even more
astounding is the RNA, which is capable of reproducing the DNA as well
as other proteins.
The mitochondria are the energy stores; the
lysosomes are collections of chemicals, which could be damaging were it
not for the cell membranes
that hold them in place. Cells can feed
themselves, repair damage to themselves and to the tissues, and carry
out their various functions. Nerve cells carry messages; muscle cells
contract and move the body; retinal cells can see; cochlear cells can
hear. The cell contains many other structures and functions. This makes
each cell more detailed and sophisticated than even the most complicated
machine made by human beings.
The Human Brain
detailed than the cells of the body is the human brain. We can take the
brain apart, examine it with CAT scans, PET scans, MRIs, and the
electron microscope, thereby identifying its parts and learning
something of its functions. There is much that humans have not yet
learned. Human beings are aware of their surroundings and receive
knowledge through their special senses. The brain thinks, plans, and
stores memories. The nerves carry impulses from the brain and spinal
cord to govern the movements and functions of the body. It is
principally the uniqueness of the human brain that affirms that God
created humankind in His image.
God put into the human brain the
ability to be self-aware, to be aware of the world, and to be aware of
God. To be made in the image of God means to have God’s law written on
the heart. This includes having love for God and for our fellow human
beings. Because of their love for God, simply seeing what God did was an
unspoken command for Adam and Eve to do likewise, to the limits of their
When God created the human race, He knew that the
time would come when His only begotten Son would come to this earth to
live a sinless life as a human being. God put into the human brain all
the capabilities His Son would need to resist sin, and human beings
still possess those capabilities today!
The brain has often been
compared to a computer. In some ways,
the comparison is valid; in other
ways, the brain functions differently. The brain is an electro-chemical
organ. This makes it slower than a computer, allowing the brain to
gather value, attitude, and emotion to make wiser decisions. The
capability of the brain, as well as the storage capacity for memory, is
immense-more than any computer.
God Gave Men Free Will
Being created in the image of God, human beings possess free will:
the ability to choose. Free will provides the ability to choose whom he
will serve, God or self. Choosing to serve God gives one access to the
power and purpose of God, which enable success in life. Serving God
brings freedom, power to do, and life itself.
Why would humans
choose anything else? The answer comes from Eden. Satan deceived Eve
into believing that yielding to selfish desires would bring her a
heightened degree of happiness; instead, it brought slavery, sorrow,
weakness, and death. Rather than trusting God to save Eve, Adam joined
her in sin.
The Bible repeatedly shows that, to serve God, humans
need to exercise choice. The Bible also reveals the effects of choosing
not to serve God (Isa. 59:2). From these revelations, we recognize that
humans have free will to choose their destiny, either to serve God
willingly or to rebel.5
At the same time, Paul uses the word
“predestinate” (Rom. 8:28, 30). Does this suggest that free will is of
no effect? While God does predestine all to be saved (1 Tim. 2:4; Eph.
1:11) and while the will of God is effective in the lives of human
beings, it is only by the consent of human beings that the Holy Spirit
changes lives (Isa. 59:2; Rom. 8:13-15).
God placed man under
law, as an indispensable condition of his very existence. He was a
subject of the divine government, and there can be no government without
law. God might have created man without the power to transgress His law;
He might have withheld the hand of Adam from touching the forbidden
fruit; but in that case man would have been, not a free moral agent, but
a mere automaton. Without freedom of choice, his obedience would not
have been voluntary, but forced.6
The Power of God Sustains the Creation
Did God create this earth to run on its own power and
direction? No, God created this earth as an expression of His love, and
He continues to support and guide His creation so that all creatures can
enjoy the happiness and beauty He designed from the beginning. Such
knowledge evokes praise and love for the Creator in the human heart.
Creation could not have come into existence and cannot now continue
without God. Hear this beautifully expressed in the following words:
The seed has in itself a germinating principle, a principle that God
himself has implanted; yet if left to itself the seed would have no
power to spring up. Man has his part to act in promoting the growth of
There is life in the seed, there is power in the soil; but unless an
infinite power is exercised day and night, the seed will yield no
Without the life of God, nature would die. His creative works are
dependent on Him. He bestows life-giving properties on all that nature
produces. We are to regard the trees laden with fruit as the gift of
God, just as much as though He placed the fruit in our hands.”
In the production of earth’s harvests, God
is working a miracle every day. Through natural agencies the same work
is accomplished that was wrought in the feeding of the multitude. Men
prepare the soil and sow the seed,
but it is the life from God that
causes the seed to germinate.
God’s handiwork in nature is not
God Himself in nature. The things of nature are an expression of God’s
character; by them we may understand His love, His power, and His glory;
but we are not to regard nature as God.7
1. Ellen G. White, “Purpose of Man’s Creation,” Advent Review and Sabbath Herald,
February 11, 1902.
2. The work of creation was finished on the
sixth day (Gen. 1:31; 2:1). God did not stop work on the seventh day of
creation and rest for the balance of history but simply rested from the
work of creating, before going on to other work. Jesus told the
Pharisees: “My Father worketh hitherto, and I work” (John 5:17). He
acknowledged the sustaining work of the Father: “But the Father that
dwelleth in me, he doeth the works” (John 14:10; see also Isa. 40:26;
Acts 17:28; 1 Cor. 12:6). Facts about the seventh-day Sabbath:
The Sabbath was made holy by God as a day of rest and a memorial of
creation for the benefit of man (Gen. 2:1-3; Mark 2:27, 28).
It is the seal of obedience within the law and a memorial to creation
(Exod. 16:28, 29; 20:8-11; 31:17).
c. It is the sign of
sanctification, indicating that God has changed our lives (Exod. 31:13;
Ezek. 20:12, 20).
d. Its rest is for the full day of twenty-four
hours, not just for a short two hours of worship (Lev. 23:32)!
It was part of what God expected of Gentiles who “joined themselves to
the Lord.” They were to keep the Sabbath as God invited the people of
the earth to make the Jerusalem temple “an house of prayer for all
people” (Isa. 56:6, 7).
f. It is a seal that marks God’s people
in the end time (Rev. 7:1-4; 12:17; 14:1-5, 12).
3. Deism is the
“belief that understands God as distant, in that God created the
universe but then left it to run its course on its own, following
certain “˜laws of nature’ that God had built into the universe” (Stanley
J. Grenz, David Guretzki, and Cherith Fee Nordling, Pocket Dictionary of
Theological Terms [Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1999], p. 36).
Paul, in his sermon on Mars Hill in Athens, connected the term “the
unknown God” with the true Creator God of heaven and earth, who not only
gives form, life, and ability, but also sustains His creatures on a
daily basis. “God that made the world and all things therein, “
he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; “ And hath made of
one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth,
for in him we live, and move, and have our being” (Acts 17:24-28).
4. Were it not for God’s “fine tuning” of the universe, life could
not exist. See Guillermo Gonzalez and Jay Richards, The Privileged
Planet: How Our Place in the Cosmos is Designed for Discovery
(Washington, DC: Regnery Publishing, Inc., 2004), 464 pp.
gave humans free will to choose Him or to rebel (Deut. 4:29; Joshua
24:15; Isa. 1:19, 20; 55:6, 7; 65:12; Ezek. 18:24; 33:11; Amos 5:4;
Matt. 7:7; John 3:16; Acts 3:19; Rom. 6:11-13; Rev. 3:18, 20). The
conditional element in these statements (“if,” “let,” “choose,” and
God’s imploring them) requires that humans have a voluntary choice in
whether or not to serve God.
6. Ellen G. White, Patriarchs and
Prophets (Nampa, ID: Pacific Press Publishing Association, 2005), p. 49.
7. Ellen G. White, Medical Ministry (Nampa, ID: Pacific Press
Publishing Association, 1963), pp. 7, 8, 11.