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Cultivated fields

Cultivating the Earth

working with God to transform the earth

For the Lord God had not caused it to rain on the earth,
and there was no man to till the ground

Genesis 2:5

The second account of creation begins in Genesis 2:4.  It is a retelling of the creation event with an emphasis and focus on man, his creation and development under the care of God.  The passage gives us a brief glimpse into God’s intent of how His relationship with man would function.

Man’s Role with God

The account begins by telling us this is the genealogy of the heavens of the earth, then inserts an odd observation.  The passage tells us that this portion of history predates the growth of plants in cultivated fields (Genesis 2:5). It is odd because one would expect it is self-evident that cultivated fields came well after the creation of the world.  However, not satisfied with the observation, the text continues on to inform us of the reason that there were no plants in fields: because God had not sent rain, because there was no man to till the fields.

This gives us a hint of God’s intent for the planet He created.  He did not intend that the planet remain a wild wilderness, but be cultivated.  Furthermore, it tells us that God and man would work together in accomplishing the task.  Man would till the soil, but he would depend on God to send the rain. Thus, God’s intent was that He and man would work together to cultivate the earth.

God’s Care for Man

God’s method of planting the garden reveals a few things.  First, it’s clear God wasn’t dependent on man’s help in planting trees and crops. Secondly, including a river suggests that God was encouraging man to explore the region beyond the garden boundaries. Thirdly, God didn’t create man, place a hoe in his hand, and command him to start turning sod.  

From these observations, I see that God created man as a living being with curiosity and a desire to discover. His intent was not a creature under a master/slave type relationship, but a living being discovering the wonders of his Creator.

To be continued


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