Here is a piece of what is coming this weekend @psmchurch – We (humanity) were locked out of the Garden of Eden in Genesis 3. Why? Can we get back in? If so, when?
After Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit, satan’s promise had, in a backhanded way, come true. Adam and Eve had, in a sense, become like God in the knowing of good and evil (verse 22). But there is a great difference as well as some similarity. Both man and God knew good and evil, but in a vastly different way.
Perhaps the difference can best be illustrated in this way. A doctor can know of cancer by virtue of his education and experience as a doctor. That is, he has read of cancer, heard lectures on cancer, and seen it in his patients. A patient, also, can know of cancer, but as its victim. While both know of cancer, the patient would wish he had never heard of it. Such is the knowledge which Adam and Eve came to possess.
God had promised salvation to come in time through the birth of Messiah, who would destroy Satan. Adam and Eve might be tempted to gain eternal life through the eating of the fruit of the tree of life. They had chosen knowledge over life. Now, as the Israelites too late tried to possess Canaan (Numbers 14:39-45), so fallen man might attempt to gain life through the tree of life in the garden.
It would seem that had Adam and Eve eaten of the tree of life they would have lived forever (verse 22). This is the reason God sent them out of the garden (verse 23). In verse 24 the ‘sending out’ of the two is more dramatically called ‘driving out.’ Stationed at the entrance of the garden are the cherubim and the flaming sword.
“How cruel and severe,” some would be tempted to protest. In today’s legal jargon, it would probably be called ‘cruel and unusual punishment.’ But think a moment, before you speak rashly. What would have happened had God not driven this couple from the garden and banned their return? I can answer it in one word—hell. Hell is giving men both what they want and what they deserve (cf. Revelation 16:6) forever. Hell is spending eternity in sin, separate from God:
And these will pay the penalty of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power (II Thessalonians 1:9).
God was merciful and gracious in putting Adam and Eve out of the garden. He kept them from eternal punishment. Their salvation would not come in a moment, but in time, not easily, but through pain—but it would come. They must trust Him to accomplish it.
** thanks to Bob Deffinbaugh for letting me us part of his blog