From Eden to Paradise

A 10.09.2022 self-study about 'From Eden to Paradise'

From Eden to Paradise


Genesis 1:1-5: In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day.

Genesis 39:20-21: Joseph’s master took him and put him in prison, the place where the king’s prisoners were confined. But while Joseph was there in the prison, 21 the Lord was with him; he showed him kindness and granted him favor in the eyes of the prison warden.

Luke14:26-33: “If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even their own life—such a person cannot be my disciple. 27 And whoever does not carry their cross and follow me cannot be my disciple. 28 “Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Won’t you first sit down and estimate the cost to see if you have enough money to complete it? 29 For if you lay the foundation and are not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule you, 30 saying, ‘This person began to build and wasn’t able to finish.’ 31 “Or suppose a king is about to go to war against another king. Won’t he first sit down and consider whether he is able with ten thousand men to oppose the one coming against him with twenty thousand? 32 If he is not able, he will send a delegation while the other is still a long way off and will ask for terms of peace. 33 In the same way, those of you who do not give up everything you have cannot be my disciples.

Luke15.30: But when this son of yours who has squandered your property with prostitutes comes home, you kill the fattened calf for him!’

1 Peter 5:8-10: Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings. 10 And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.

Humanity had its beginning in Paradise, the Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve left the garden and began the journey that is life. Life is a pilgrimage that takes us through time to the eternity the Creator has promised us

Creation began with seven creative days. The seventh day is known as the day the Lord designated as a day of rest. History is the story of the moving from one day to another. Each day is an era, or a period of history. The day begins with evening, then moves through the night to the daylight of the new day.

"In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth... darkness was on the face of the deep... . Then God said, 'Let there be light'; and there was light" (Genesis 1:1-3). He spoke and light came to drive back the darkness. History is the story of darkness descending on earth as a day when an era or a historical period comes to an end.

Following night, light returns and a new day begins. Clearly, there is a cyclical pattern in history. We see days, weeks, seasons and life cycles.

Some understand history as an endless procession of cycles. Their religion is based on doing whatever is necessary to get the gods, who control the cycles, to get one started up again. I hey use magic, rituals, offerings and whatever they think is necessary to restore the cycle. Usually, the New Year's celebration is the key to their understanding their lite, history and cyclical perspective.

In sharp contrast, Christianity offers a linear perspective to the understanding of history. God created the world with a divine plan that moves toward a future.

From within our soul comes a need to find meaning and purpose. We believe that we are more than just creatures moving through a cycle of conception, birth, growth, maturity and old age followed by death that ends it all. From deep within our being comes the call to live in keeping with a vision.

Reality is that tomorrow exists. We long to be on a pilgrimage going somewhere. We hope for a future where things are better. We desire to bring in a new day that will correct the things we see wrong in the world today.


That hope, that vision, is found in what can be called the prophetic perspective on life. The Bible is the sure word of prophecy. The prophetic perspective comes from the prophets. They had a vision of the future. That vision came, and comes, as the Word of the Lord. it is best described as promise.

The true prophet is a man of faith who believes the One who spoke the vision of the future. He ascends the mountain and looks forward to the future, Before him are valleys to cross and other mountains to climb. Each one moves him to higher heights. His message calls others to move forward. He invites them to join him in a pilgrimage that will lead to that ultimate, future home.


We are invited to enter into a relation ship with the One who provides prophetic hope. We are to join Him as a community of faith. Believers in the promise become a part of a covenant community. I he most important prophets were those who clarified the promises and received a new covenant that provided the guidelines for living as a community,

The covenant provided God's direction for relating to one another as a community of faith. But more importantly, it provided guidelines for strengthening and developing man's relationship with God. To relate to God, one must worship Him.

The covenant perspective understands the concept of blessing as central in our relationships. First, He blesses us. Then, in the covenant community we are to live to bless others. But the most important aspect is that we must bless God.

The covenant provides guidelines for worship. Every period of history provides new guidelines for a new covenant community to move to higher levels of worship and spiritual relationships with God, but the principles are constant.


Biblical history can best be understood by dividing it into periods. This prophetic perspective provides an understanding of judgment on the failure of humankind to live in covenant relationship with God. When darkness sets in and things Sink so low the world looks hopeless, God brings judgment.

After this darkness, God brings a new day. He raises up a leader who leads the people of God into a new era. From a remnant that He preserves, God creates a new covenant community.

History is marked by conflict between good and evil. God is light. His power pushes back forces of darkness that descend when people become complacent and allow the darkness to take control. To please God and find fulfillment in life, we must walk in God's glorious light.

Failure to continue to move upward toward the final goal eventually leads us downward. The forces of evil pull us down when we don t move up with Him. We must come to our senses and recognize that Satan, our adversary, is working to destroy us.


Key factors direct our study in discipleship. Here are some important guidelines to help our understanding:

  • God is the creator and history moves through a creative process that has a final goal in mind.
  • Life is a pilgrimage leading to the Promised Land, but the promise is still the future.
  • History moves in a cyclical pattern marked by a linear movement toward this ultimate vision.
  • God raises up leaders who guide the covenant community in their pilgrimage. These are prophets who hear the Word of the Lord and speak it to the community.
  • Each period of history functions within a covenant relationship.
  • The most important key to understanding historical eras is the idea of covenant. While God makes new covenants with His people, each new covenant provides continuity with the previous one.


1. Does the idea of seeing life as a pilgrimage from Eden to a new paradise make sense to you?

2. When we talk about the "Day of the Lord, to what do we refer?

3. What times in history would you describe as dark nights?

4. What often happens during New Year's festivals in non-Western countries?

5. Do you see history as primarily linear (moving in a line) or cyclical (moving in cycles)?

6. How important is it to live in the hope of a better tomorrow?

7. Do you think that the future will be better than the past, or do you expect things to get worse'? Why?

8. Why do you think it is important to emphasize the reality of spiritual warfare?