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"But for Adam there was not found a helper comparable to him. 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. Then the rib which the LORD God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man. 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. Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh." - Genesis 2
The Old Testament - A Brief Overview
Adam & Eve
After God created Adam, He gave to him dominion over all His creation and the garden of Eden as a home to tend it and keep it. But He gave one restriction:
Gen 2:16-17 And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, "Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; "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."
Adam would know what it meant to participate in evil, and the result would be banishment and death. Death is separation from God.
Then God created the woman:
Gen 2:18-24 And the LORD God said, "It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him." 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. 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. 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. Then the rib which the LORD God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man. 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." Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.
The Garden of Eden
The exact location of the Garden of Eden is impossible to know for certainty. The Bible does reveal that a river flowed out of the garden and was divided into four branches. The four branches are: the Tigris, Euphrates, Pishon, and Gihon. In the world today the Tigris and Euphrates rivers flow from the Persian Gulf up and through the countries of Iraq, Syria, and Turkey. The other two branches, the Pishon, and Gihon are a mystery. Most scholars believe that the Garden of Eden was located somewhere near the Persian Gulf. No trace has ever been found, some believe that it died when man was expelled, others believe that it was swept away in the great flood of Noah. Jesus believed in the Garden of Eden, and taught that Adam and Eve were two literal people that existed in history. Paul the Apostle also believed in the Garden of Eden and taught that the serpent deceived the woman and not the man.
Adam loved Eve, but she was later seduced by the serpent, who was actually Satan, the one who rebelled against the Most High God and the one who leads the evil spirits in their rebellion against the Kingdom of Heaven and God's purposes. Eve was deceived and she ate of the forbidden fruit (the Bible doesn't say what kind of fruit it was). Then Adam, who was with her, chose to eat of the fruit also and they sinned. When they sinned, spiritual and physical death came into the world and fellowship with God was broken. Like a rose being plucked off the vine, they were immediately disconnected from their source of life. You can almost see the shame and guilt and fear of their new nature taking over:
Gen 3:7-10 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves coverings. And they heard the sound 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 among the trees of the garden. Then the LORD God called to Adam and said to him, "Where are you?" So he said, "I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself."
The Lamb of God A Covering For Sin
But all was not lost. As God was revealing the consequences of their actions He also gave a glorious promise. God promised Adam and Eve that He would send a Redeemer (Messiah), who would destroy Satan and restore them to a right relationship with Him (Gen 3). In the meantime they could only approach God with a blood sacrifice. This animal acted as a substitute for the penalty of sin until "the lamb of God" who is Jesus Christ would come and pay the full debt.
Genesis 3:21 "Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them."
Cast Out of the Garden
The Bible reveals that because Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit sin and death entered the world. The Lord cast Adam and Eve from the garden, and from the tree of life. He placed Cherubim and a flaming sword, turning in every direction, to guard the entrance to the tree of life.
Genesis 3:22-24 - "And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever: Therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken. So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubim, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life."
The Bible talks a lot about the spiritual realm, and about angels and demons. Angels are servants of God and demons are in servants of Satan and in rebellion against God's Kingdom. Cherubim are only mentioned a few times in the Bible. The prophet Ezekiel described Cherubim based on a vision, they have four faces: a man, an ox, a lion, and an eagle. Gold Cherubim were carved upon the lid (Mercy seat) of the Ark of the Covenant, and blood was sprinkled between them by the high priest on Yom Kippur. Ezekiel also mentioned that Satan was a Cherub before he fell. There have been numerous archaeological discoveries of carved Cherubim used to guard entrances in pagan temples. The great winged bulls of ancient Assyria can be seen today in the British Museum in London.
Cain and Abel
The Bible mentions a lot between the time of Adam and the Flood. For example there was the first murder. Adam and Eve had many sons and daughters but there are only two mentioned because they are important to the history of redemption. Eve thought that her firstborn, Cain, was the one who would destroy Satan and deliver them from the curse of sin and death. But Cain jealously killed his brother Abel. Cain was upset at God because He would not accept his sacrifice (the best of his good works), though He accepted Abel's blood offering (God's prescribed way). Cain rose up and slew his brother. God punished him by driving him out of the midst of the people who served God. Then God gave Adam and Eve another son, Seth, who replaced Abel. The redeemer of the world would come from Seth's family.
But what about Cain's family? The Bible reveals that Cain's son, Lamech, inherited Cain's evil ways (Gen 4:19-24). Sin added unto sin and Lamech boasted that he didn't need God's protection because he had his sword. He rejected God's holy standards for marriage and took many wives. He also killed a man for striking him showing his contempt for God and his disregard for human life. Evil spread very rapidly to all mankind through the ungodly line of Cain.