“Therefore the Lord God sent (Adam and Eve) forth from the Garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken. So (God) drove out the man (and woman) and He placed at the east of the Garden of Eden Cherubims and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.”
Genesis 3: 23, 24, King James Version
“Outside The Garden”
“As You Leave Eden Behind”
“As you leave Eden behind you, remember your home,
For as you remember back into your own being --
You will not be alone…the otters will swim up to you in the bay,
The wild deer on the moor will run beside you.
Sleep at the tree’s root, where the night is spun
Into the stuff of worlds, listen to the winds,
The tides, and the night’s harmonies, and know
All that you knew before you began to forget…”
Having once known the beauty of Eden, how would I have felt having to leave this perfect home forever?
“I believe that there is one story in the world, and only one …Humans are caught – in their lives, in their thoughts, in their hungers and ambitions, in their avarice and cruelty, and in their kindness and generosity too – in a net of good and evil…There is no other story.”
East of Eden
While a great deal of my college education focused on nursing, back when I was in school, you could “major” in one area and “minor” in another. My minor was American and English literature. Being a voracious reader, I found myself devouring everything I could get my hands on. John Steinbeck was one author I thoroughly enjoyed, to the point that, years ago, several friends treated me to a luncheon in one of the private rooms in his home in Salinas, California. This lovely but modest home was converted to a museum and special luncheon area and I loved looking at some of the keepsakes on display.
Of all Steinbeck’s literary achievements, I agree with his own personal assessment of his writing accomplishments when he called “East of Eden” his “big one.” He elaborated further by saying that when he wrote this book he, “Didn’t hold back.” Based on the story of Cain and Abel, with the title drawn from Genesis 4: 16 (K.J.V.), “And Cain, went out from the presence of the Lord, and dwelt in the land of Nod, on the east of Eden,” Steinbeck, through the multi-generational lives of two families, gives his readers a detailed portrayal of choices between good and evil that decidedly carve out the history of our lives. As the narrator of the story pointedly says: “Man has a choice.” I will add, from our study this past week, we found out that woman, too, has a choice. And Eve’s choice had a definite impact not only on her own life but on that of her offspring throughout history.
This is why we are going to spend the next week looking at what happens for good and evil by the choices we make.
While there are only three named women mentioned in the Bible from Eve to Sarah, the wife of Abraham, there are repeated references to “daughters” in nearly every generation.
So we are going to focus our study of Adah, Zillah, Naamah and all those nameless daughters that through their fertility were responsible for the birth of ALL the children from Adam and Eve down to Sarah and Abraham.
What will make this study of great importance is that as a result of Adam and Eve’s fall and the choices they made, their lives were not only immediately affected but also contributed to some disastrous developments in the lives of their children as well as future generations.
While last week, we were reminded of the decision that led to the fall, this week we will see that while there are consequences, God never leaves our side and has never changed His view of His daughters – He never disowns us, no matter how far we fall.
Even though the original inhabitants of the Garden home were planted east of Eden, evil did not and will not prevail. For God has given us a choice, and praise His name, down through the ages, millions of His sons and daughters have “chosen” light instead of darkness…good instead of evil.
thank you that
is not an imposition
of Your will
wringing all pleasure
from our lives.
Thank you that
it can come naturally
as like a loving parent
You let us
chart out our own path,
guiding us gently
Laughter, Silence and Shouting
Dorothy Valcárcel, Author
When A Woman Meets Jesus
For more from Dorothy, please visit transformationgarden.com.