The question in the title of this post is something that Pastor Jay talked about last Sunday during his sermon on Genesis 3:22-24.
For more details on this let me encourage y’all to read an excerpt from Pastor Richard Barcellos; book Better than the Beginning: Creation in Biblical Perspective. Here is one section from it:
Since this may be a new concept for some readers, it is important to consider this a bit further. Was the garden the earth’s first temple? Was the garden a special dwelling place of God among men on the earth? The text of Genesis 2 and 3 does not use those words to describe the garden of Eden. But as we have already seen, it does utilize language used elsewhere in Scripture that describes God’s presence in Israel’s tabernacle. Does the Bible look back upon the garden of Eden and indicate that it was, in fact, a temple, a sanctuary, the first special dwelling place of God on earth among men? I think it does.
Consider Ezekiel 28:11-19, especially verses 13-14, 16, and 18…
Read “The Garden of Eden a Temple and Adam a Priest?”. [More snippets from the book]
Furthermore, I had the opportunity to interview the author about this book. You may listen to the first part of that interview here [part 2 here] or below (we get into Adam and the temple around the 27 minute mark):
Here is Pastor Jay’s sermon from this past Sunday reminding us to NOT miss Jesus in all of Scripture:
By way of encouraging you to meditate on the glories of the incarnation of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, here are the Scripture readings from this past Sunday:
The Christmas season is mostly celebrated as a joyful, happy occasion (and for good reason!) But it’s also a good season to remember the longing, the desperation, and the darkness in which the world awaited its coming Savior, and even now awaits His return.
The people who walk in darkness
Will see a great light;
Those who live in a dark land,
The light will shine on them.
Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel.
– Isaiah 9:2; 7:14
This true light was none other than the Word of God, the Son of God, 2nd person of the Trinity, Jesus the promised Messiah:
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
He was in the beginning with God.
All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being.
In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men.
The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.
– John 1:1-5
…there were some shepherds staying out in the fields and keeping watch over their flock by night.
And an angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them; and they were terribly frightened.
But the angel said to them,
“Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people;for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.
This will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
And suddenly there appeared with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,
“Glory to God in the highest,
And on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased.”
…The shepherds went back, glorifying and praising God for all that they had heard and seen, just as had been told them.
– Luke 2:8-20
We know the story does not end there, but this baby fulfilled the purpose for which he was born, namely, to “save His people from their sins.” (Matt. 1:21)
…behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife; for the Child who has been conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit.
“She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.”
Now all this took place to fulfill what was spoken by the Lord through the prophet:
“BEHOLD, THE VIRGIN SHALL BE WITH CHILD AND SHALL BEAR A SON, AND THEY SHALL CALL HIS NAME IMMANUEL,” which translated means, “GOD WITH US.”
…the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.
– Matthew 1:20-23; 20:28
And He is coming again to judge the living and the dead (as Psalm 98 says [which Joy to the World is based off of):
Shout joyfully to the Lord, all the earth;
Break forth and sing for joy and sing praises.
…Before the Lord, for He is coming to judge the earth;
He will judge the world with righteousness
And the peoples with equity.
Joy to the World:
No more let sins and sorrows grow,
Nor thorns infest the ground;
He comes to make His blessings flow
Far as the curse is found!
“Behold, I am coming soon,
bringing my recompense with me,
to repay everyone for what he has done.
I am the Alpha and the Omega,
the first and the last,
the beginning and the end.”
… He who testifies to these things says,
“Surely I am coming soon.”
Come, Lord Jesus!
The grace of the Lord Jesus be with all.
– Revelation 22:12-13, 20-21
Apologies that it took us so long to get these online, but they are now up:
Continuing in our series through The 1689 Baptist Confession of Faith, Pastor Jay led us through chapter 18 “Of the Assurance of Grace & Salvation”. Listen or download:
- Living – His current earthly life was so completely wrapped up in Christ (John 15:1-11 | Gal. 2:20 | Col. 3:3-4 | 1 Cor. 10:31 | 2 Cor. 5:14-15)
- Death – finality of life… Heaven or Hell (2 Pet. 1:10-11 | Eccl. 7:2, 4 | Ps. 90:12 | 1 Sam. 2:6 |
- Why is death gain? (Phil. 3:7; 1:23 | Titus 1:11 | John 12:25)
- It brings us into closer fellowship with God (2 Cor. 5:8 | Ps. 16:11 | Luke 23:43 | Rom. 6:4, 6; 8:17 | Gal. 2:20 | Col. 3:4; 2:13 | Eph. 2:5-6 | 2 Cor. 4:14 | 1 John 3:2 | Job 19:6 | Rev. 21:23)
- We have an inheritance (Matt. 6:19-20 | 1 Pet. 1:4 | 2 Cor. 4:8)
- Tribulations of this life will be over (Phil. 1:29; 3:10 | Eccl. 2:22-23)
- Sin will be abolished
- Death has been defeated (Heb. 2:14-15)
Heidelberg Catechism Q.1 What is your only comfort in life and death?
A: That I am not my own, but belong with body and soul, both in life and in death, to my faithful Saviour Jesus Christ. He has fully paid for all my sins with His precious blood, and has set me free from all the power of the devil. He also preserves me in such a way that without the will of my heavenly Father not a hair can fall from my head; indeed, all things must work together for my salvation. Therefore, by His Holy Spirit He also assures me of eternal life and makes me heartily willing and ready from now on to live for Him.
Sorry, we didn’t get the Sunday Seminary recorded this week.
- Rejoicing in salvation (Phil. 1:19)
- True joy is knowledge based
- Getting to know God brings joy
- Deliverance = final salvation (Phil. 1:20, 25-26, 28, 12)
- This joy is undiminished by circumstances
- Prayer is one means (2 Thes. 3:1-2)
- Exalting Christ in life or death (Phil. 1:20)
- Paul as a paradigm (Phil. 3:17 | 1 Cor. 4:16, 11:1)
Sorry, we didn’t get the Sunday Seminary recorded this week.