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Wordwise Insight, Issue #115
March 14, 2014


BIBLE INSIGHTS (and Reader Q & A): What is the meaning of the Tree of Life, and how does it relate to us?

WORDWISE HYMNS: My Blog called Wordwise Hymns for you to check out!

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Tree of Life

(What does it mean for us?)

QUESTION: Why did God guard to the way of the tree of life [Gen. 3:22-24]? If Adam eats the fruit of the life, will he live forever? God had told them before this: you will return to dust (will die). So how can he live forever after the curse? What does it mean?

ANSWER: The first ten or eleven chapters of the Bible cover a great deal of time, often with little detail. There may be things we wish God had told us, but He has not. Likely because the Lord knew the information would not be helpful to us.

We know that God made the first man and woman in a state of innocence. That is, they had never sinned, never having had an opportunity to do so. And the Lord put before them a simple test of whether they would be willing to believe and obey Him. They were given free access to the fruit of every tree in the garden of Eden (Gen. 2:16)--which possibly included the Tree of Life, at first. There was only one exception.

Only the Tree of Knowledge (of good and evil) was kept from them. They were warned that if they ate of the fruit of that tree, they would die (Gen. 2:17). Sadly, they disobeyed. We know that the whole human race now experiences physical aging, dying and death. But since the first pair didn't die physically for many years (Gen. 5:5), this may refer in particular to spiritual death (separation from God).

The Bible describes lost sinners as being "dead in trespasses and sins" (Eph. 2:1). Though physically alive, they lack the spiritual sensitivity to comprehend God's will and ways (I Cor. 2:14). Neither do they possess the spiritual desire and power to do the will of God (Rom. 3:11; 8:7). In that fallen state, they need a new spiritual birth (Jn. 1:12-13; 3:3; Gal. 5:25).

If Adam and Eve had been uncertain about whether something they proposed to do...

(To read the remainder of the article, click on Tree of Life.


Come and Pay Us a Visit!

I have developed a blog that is called Wordwise Hymns. As the title suggests, it is about hymns, and church music in general.

But as many of you will know, a blog is especially designed to facilitate a conversation on its particular subject. Readers can easily post comments about what they see, and I'm able to reply. I hope you will take part in the discussion!

Through 2010, almanac entries dealt with what happened in hymn history on each day of the year. Beginning in 2011, I hope to analyze hymns from a biblical standpoint, linking to the material that has come before.

My hope is that the blog will add to the value of the website and this newsletter, and promote some profitable exchanges on the subject of sacred music.

What happened on this day in hymnology? To find out, click Wordwise Hymns.

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