Entry Level Theological Truth [41]

“So He drove out the man; and He placed cherubim at the east of the garden of Eden, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to guard the way to the tree of life.” Genesis 3:24

CherubimThe cherubim were created beings that fall under the broader category of angels. Genesis 3 presents their first appearance, but they figure prominently later in the Bible as decorative representations in the Tabernacle and Temple. They adorned the veil & the mercy seat in each of those structures. Their presence on the former was a daunting reminder that man could not stride boldly into the presence of a holy God on a whim. As Hebrews succinctly words it: “The Holy Spirit indicating this, that the way into the Holiest of All was not yet made manifest while the first tabernacle was still standing” (Hebrews 9:8). Atop the mercy seat, the cherubim flanked the place were God’s glory sat enthroned (Psalms 99:1). The symbolism accentuates that these heavenly beings were sentries who guarded the Lord’s glory.

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Entry Level Theological Truth [30]

“So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate.” Genesis 3:6

“For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression.” 1 Timothy 2:13-14

The modern confusion over gender issues stems from humanity’s first parents’ ancient failure. Adam and Eve did not maintain their proper roles, which led to their disobedience to God’s Word. The Man failed to lead and thereby opened the pathway for his wife’s deception and the ensuing sin that snared each of them. By ignoring their divinely-ordained roles they brought terrible consequences upon their world and themselves.

 

 


The Danger Of A Leader’s Silence



 

Adam was created to lead. Eve was meant to help in the great work of subduing the earth (Genesis 2:20-24.) Unfortunately, it appears from the statement “She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate” (Genesis 3:6) that the man was present throughout at least a portion of his wife’s conversation with the tempter. This implies that he stood by and was silent, allowing Eve to do the talking and the serpent to dictate the direction of the discussion. Instead of silencing the adversary’s blasphemy, Adam remained quiet, and watched Eve disobey. He then followed suit by knowingly eating of the prohibited tree. Effectively he chose Eve over God. For his behavior, Adam is given chief culpability in the fall among humans (Genesis 3:17-19; see also Romans 5:12-19.)

 


The Danger Of Stepping Out Of Submission



 

When Eve stepped into the leadership vacuum left by Adam’s inaction, she placed herself upon dangerous ground that led to tragedy. She did not closely adhere to God’s Word and thus fell prey to deception. This resulted in her spiritual death before God, as well as the beginning of physical death in her body (a process which would not be finished for many a year, but which led inexorably to the separation of her soul from her body.) Further she put Adam in the difficult position of having to choose between their Creator and her. The guilt for his sin rests upon the man’s shoulders; nonetheless, Eve did not prove to be a fitting helper for Adam in Genesis 3.

 


It’s Deja Vu All Over Again!



 

Similarly today there is a dearth of men who are willing to develop their God-given mandate to lead in the world, the home, and the church. Too often men selfishly shirk their responsibilities in favor of an easier life or the gratification of their lusts. This in turn opens the door for women to usurp the authority of the man – willingly or unwillingly – in hopes of doing what needs to be done.

The failure of men to be leaders like Christ is at the root of the problems facing society, the family, and the church. Of course, they can only exercise this kind of loving servant leadership in the power of the Holy Spirit, and one can only receive Him by being born again through faith in the Lord Jesus who died on the cross as a sacrifice and then rose in victory. Likewise, in order to be submissive, godly helpers, women must have the power of the Holy Spirit enabling them to obey God’s Word. Only by being saved through faith in the Lord Jesus may they achieve their purpose in God’s program.

The church should serve as a microcosm of the new order of redemption in Christ. Accordingly, men ought to lead in the government of the local assembly as overseers (1 Timothy 3:1.) More basically they are given the privileged responsibility of vocally leading in the assembly in worship, praise, and teaching. The sisters are to remain silent, not teach, and not usurp authority over the brothers (1 Corinthians 14:34-35; 1 Timothy 2:11-15.) The men are to be uncovered and the women are to cover, so that the headship of Christ and glory of God may be seen among the angels (1 Corinthians 11:2-16.) In this way, the original creation order is restored: man offers godly leadership and the woman offers godly submission – all to the glory of God.

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Entry Level Theological Truth [18]

Cole Thomas The Garden of Eden 1828

“And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.” Genesis 2:25

This verse takes us back to the idyllic time before the fall of mankind. It closes the more detailed account of God’s creation of human beings. We may look back and derive certain lessons from the first two chapters of Genesis.

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Entry Level Theological Truth [17]

“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.” Genesis 2:23

The past four decades brought about much strife over the so-called “battle of the sexes.” Gender issues remain highly contentious and creep into the academic and business worlds, to say nothing of literature and the nightly news. Many polemicists affirm that there are deep divisions between men and women that are irreconcilable. Others contend that there is really no

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Entry Level Theological Truth [16]

Surgery

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. Genesis 2:21-22

Anesthesia has only been commonly available to human beings for about the last century and a half. Anyone who’s read about horrific battlefield hospitals

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Entry Level Theological Truth [14]

Entry Level Theological Truth 13

“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.” Genesis 2:19-20

There’s a common misconception that modern science and theism are completely incompatible. To borrow divorce court language, God and scientific endeavor suffer from “irreconcilable differences.” In actuality, there is no incongruity between the Creator and rigorous examination of His creation. We derive the English word “science” from the Latin scientia, meaning “knowledge.” Our Maker is not a “check your brain at the door” type of deity. From the beginning of the creation, God has encouraged mankind to investigate His works which display His wisdom and power. This is readily seen in His treatment of our first

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God’s Good News: Lesson 9 Part 2

I should walk according to the Spirit: Christ living in me! (Romans 8:5-14)

We are learning how a Christian can please God in his “walk.” His “walk” is what he does. We have seen that God has given the believer new life in Christ. So the way to walk is to allow Christ to live in me. I am in Christ, and Christ is to live in me.

If you set your mind on the flesh to do good, you will fail and be upset (frustrated). But if you look to the Spirit, He will make it possible for you to do right with your body. So you will have peace.

You should not really “try” but instead you should “trust.” In fact, if you “try” by your own ability, you will fail. The flesh is not able to do what God wants. It does what sin wants, because sin rules it.

What you need to do is think of yourself as dead. Reckon yourself dead. Then, yield your body to Christ for Him to live in. Your body is “dead” in one sense, but it is “alive” in another sense. It is “dead” when you give up on the flesh. But then your body is “alive” by the Spirit of Christ! Are you living as dead to yourself?

And in fact, that very Spirit of Christ is one day going to change our bodies! Even our bodies will be taken from being linked to Adam. Adam’s sin causes our bodies to corrupt and die. But in Christ, even our bodies will be given new life, raised from the dead!

So, we do not owe the flesh anything! It has not helped us at all! So we should not live according to flesh! If you try, you will fail. But if you yield your body to Christ, you will find life and rest. The Spirit of God will do what God wants with your body’s members! Give up on the flesh, and give your body over to Christ! This is God’s deliverance from sin’s power!

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The graphic illustration in Lesson 9 Part 1 and song (below) help summarize Romans 5:12-8:14. First, God told us that we are in Christ not Adam. Second, God taught us why we needed a new power to walk right. He showed this need to us by four questions about the law. He helps us see that the flesh is unable because sin is in it. Then finally, we see the value of being in Christ so we can have a righteous walk by the Spirit in us.

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Romans 5 to 8 Song
I am Crucified with Christ

(can be sung to the tune of “Oh Be Careful Little Eyes What You See”)

I am crucified with Christ, so I am dead;
Jesus Christ now lives His life in me instead;
And the life that I now live,
I just look to Him to give,
All the power I need, for (praise Him!) I am dead.

For the Lord has said it, so I know its true –
That the old me is no good, so I am through
With my fight to follow law
For my flesh will only fall!
So I give myself to Christ – all is for You!

Yes, my hands and feet now all belong to Him
I will no more yield my members unto sin
I have died to sin with Christ
And have risen to new life
So my body is for Christ to live within.

Freedom, peace, and righteousness at last abound,
As the Spirit of new life in Christ I’ve found,
For from sin I now am free
By the life of Christ in me;
And my body soon with glory will be crowned!

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Continued in Lesson 10 Part 1

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God’s Good News: Lesson 9 Part 1

Read Romans 8:1-14

The Spirit of Christ in me is a new source of power to live right (Romans 8:1-4)
We are not in Adam any more, so we are not in a condemned race. We were hopeless in Adam, but God has taken us out of Adam and put us in Christ (like we learned in chapter 5 and 6)!

We have learned (in chapter 7) that the flesh is not able to do what is right because sin rules it. When I try to live in Adam, I try to do good and I find I do evil. This shows I am under the law of sin. So, I am not able to get the members of my body to do what I want. This shows I am under the law of death. But, another law has set me free! The Spirit of life in Christ Jesus frees from both of these laws. How?

God made a way to set me free. God gave me new life in Christ rather than in Adam. God took me out of Adam and put me in Christ. When Christ died, I died (like we learned in chapter 6). He died as my representative, so the life of the risen Christ can live in me. So I need to fix my eyes on the risen Christ!

God decided that the flesh is no good. God gave up on the flesh. He decided to start a new race with a new kind of life. Christ died as a man and then rose again to start a new race of men. Christ died and rose to take us out of living in Adam and give us newness of life in Christ. In Christ, the flesh is not the power to do right. The Spirit is the power of our new life in Christ!

The law said to do right things; but it tried to tell the flesh to do right. The flesh could not do it. Now I can walk a whole new way. Instead of trying to do right through my flesh, I can let the Spirit of Christ in me do right. I need to walk “according to the Spirit” rather than “according to the flesh.” This way I am delivered from sin’s power.

Continued in Lesson 9 Part 2

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God’s Good News: Lesson 6 Part 2

The Problem Solved: Dead to sin and alive to God with Christ (Romans 6:1-14)

Because we have Adam’s life, sin rules over us. The old us could not live right. So, what God did was to start a whole new race in Christ! He gave up on the old us. In fact, He saw to it that the old us was put to death! Our “old man” died with Christ. That was our life as born in Adam’s race.

Christ died as a man. Christ represented all of us when He died. When He died, we died. Now He has risen again to a whole new kind of life. We rose with Him to that new life also. This way we have a whole new life living in our body! We are mp longer in Adam. We are in Christ.

So if we are going to walk right, we have to walk in this newness of life. When we are baptized by going down under and up out of the water, we see this picture of our dying and rising to new life with Christ.

Notice that we are talking about sin not sins. Sins are the things we have done wrong. Sin is the source of these sins. Sin is like the root of the tree; and sins are the fruit. Sin ruled us in Adam. But we died with Christ, so sin is not in charge of us any more. So if sin tries to tell us what to do, we now can say, “No.” Instead of giving our hands and feet and mouth to sin, we should give them to God to use. This is how the new life is lived – by telling God he can use our body now.

To live this life, I need to do three things. First, know that I died and rose with Christ. Second, reckon that this is true. This means that I think in my head and heart that I really did die and rise with Christ to a new life! Third, yield (present) my body and its members to God, not sin. This means I turn the reigns of my body over to God to do what He wants. My hands can do wrong if sin controls them (like hit or steal or break), or they can do right if God controls them (like help or give or build).

So sin is not our king anymore, because the person that used to live under sin’s rule is dead now. If we tried to live under law, sin would rule us. But we are not living under law any more. We need to learn some more about this idea of not living under law. But, in our next lesson we will first need to answer a BIG question about living under grace!

Continued in Lesson 7 Part 1

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God’s Good News: Lesson 6 Part 1

1. READ THESE VERSES IN YOUR BIBLE: Romans 5:12-6:14

2. READ TEACHING ABOUT THE VERSES

God’s Gospel Continued: The two races of men – Adam and Christ (Romans 5:12-21)

We have learned that we can be right before God forever. If I trust in Christ who died for my sins, I will not be judged for my sins. This is the first thing God teaches us in Romans (chapters 1 to 5).

But God also wants us to live right, so He also made a way for this in Christ. We can walk right while we are here on earth, if we reckon that we died and rose with Christ, and let Him live His life in our body. This is the second thing that God teaches us in Romans. We want to learn some more about this second part of God’s gospel that He teaches us in Romans 5 to 8. We will learn God’s solution to our internal problem, that is, the deep problem we have inside us.

For us to walk right, the key is to understand that there are two men with two races that came from them. The two men with their two races are Adam and Christ. All men are born into Adam’s race. Sin rules in Adam. We can see that sin rules Adam’s race if we think about the fact that everybody dies.

Sin began to rule when Adam sinned. By his one act of sin, his whole race came under sin’s rule. This is similar in Christ, who is the second Man. Christ did one act and it affected everyone in His race. But the difference is that Christ’s act was a righteous act, and so His race is a righteous race.

Because sin rules Adam’s race, all die. The law was added to Adam’s race to show that sin had control. Grace rules Christ’s race through righteousness, so all who have received Christ have eternal life in Him. Grace has super-abounded over sin!

Continued in Lesson 6 Part 2

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