by John Lowe
(Laurens SC, USA)
ADAM: Real Men Relate to God
When I began studying Adam and learning what it means to be a real man, I asked myself, "What will the women be doing while I am speaking?" Well, I have an answer for all the women this morning. You’ve worked hard all your life. You deserve to rest. For the next 30 minutes, you have my permission to doze off. You can think about what you are going to do this afternoon or think about what you’re going to have for dinner. There is absolutely nothing for you this morning. I’m just kidding. Practically everything we will learn about men will apply to women.
The Bible tells us that men and women are created equally but differently. An article I read compares men and women in this way: "Women are compassionate, and loving, and caring. They will stop at nothing to get what they think is best for their children. They know how to comfort a sick friend. Women bring joy and laughter to the world. Women are easily brought to tears by injustice."
"Men, well, they are good at moving heavy things and killing spiders."
Our images of men, real men, have changed with time. There was time, when real men didn’t cry, or so we were told. Today, we are told that real men are sensitive, compassionate, in touch with their feelings and do cry. The American cliché, "Real men don’t eat quiche," has been altered to "Real men not only eat quiche, but they also cook quiche."
But what does the Bible say about real men? After all, the Bible is God’s Word. The Creator ought to know what He created and what He intended His creation to be like. For the next 30 minutes, I’m going to read portions of the creation account from the Bible. Then I will make two observations, one about the origin of man and the other about the image of man. After that, I will close with three ways real men relate to God. Let me begin with the reading of Genesis 1:26-29; 2:7-9; 15-25, and then 3:1-12, 17-21.
26 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”
27 So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.
28 Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
29 And God said, “See, I have given you every herb that yields seed which is on the face of all the earth, and every tree whose fruit yields seed; to you it shall be for food.
7 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 being.
8 The Lord God planted a garden eastward in Eden, and there He put the man whom He had formed.
9 And out of the ground, the Lord God made every tree grow that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The tree of life was also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
15 Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it.
16 And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat;
17 but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for, in the day that you eat of it, you shall surely die.”
18 And the Lord God said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.”
19 Out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the air, and brought them to Adam to see what he would call them. And whatever Adam called each living creature, that was its name.
20 So Adam gave names to all cattle, to the birds of the air, and to every beast of the field. But for Adam, there was not found a helper comparable to him.
21 And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept, and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its place.
22 Then the rib which the Lord God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man.
23 And Adam said: “This is now bone of my bones And flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of Man.”
24 Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.
25 And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.
1 Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?
2 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:
3 But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.
4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:
5 For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.
6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.
7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.
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.
9 And the LORD God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?
10 And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.
11 And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat?
12 And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.
17 And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;
18 Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;
19 In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.
20 And Adam called his wife’s name Eve; because she was the mother of all living.
21 Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.
If this account of creation is new to you or if you have forgotten some of the particulars, I encourage you to reread these three chapters in Genesis. It may be that these verses have raised some questions. If so, I will try to answer questions when we finish; and I always look forward to anything that you want to add to the lesson. For now, let me make the two observations related to Adam, the first man.
The first observation is that Adam, the first man, was created by God and not evolved from an ape or ape-like creature. Some Christians want to believe the Bible and the theory of macro-evolution. They say, “The Bible supports macro-evolution.” That theory asserts that the differences in color, sizes, texture, etc., within each type of animals, are caused by pressure from without or genetic changes from within. So they blend the two together by saying God created the world and the basic elements, but God allowed evolution to be the process of creating higher beings, including human beings. Yet, the record in Genesis rules out macroevolution.
Biochemist, Dr. Duane Gish had this comment, "Evolution is the most wasteful, inefficient and cruel method that could ever be devised to create living things ... mutations (which is the basic process of evolution) leads almost always to bad outcomes: crippling, sickness, disfigurements and deaths. Good mutations are rare and they still need to compete with enormous odds to survive."
A good and compassionate God would not use evolution as a process of creating living things. Yet, in the United States, in Asia and in many other countries, people are taught the theory of evolution as fact. People are taught that men evolved from apes or ape-like creatures. But if men truly evolved from apes and ape-like creatures, we should be able to find many fossils that have both ape-like and human-like features. The theory of evolution requires such in-between forms.
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