Journey of the Bride - Chapter 5

Journey of the Bride
Beauty For Ashes Part III - George H. Warnock


The Book of Genesis is, as we know, the book of beginnings. But even in the original creation we have many types and shadows of greater things to come in the New Creation. The first Adam was himself but "a figure of Him that was to come" (Rom. 5:14). He was not the full intention of a man in His image and likeness. In the last Adam it was Godís intention to bring forth a Man of a much higher order than the man of the first order. And so in redemption we not only have recovery... we have something far beyond recovery. We have something of an entirely new order. We need to understand this principle in this day when "restoration" seems to be the theme, and people have the thought that to get back to the original state of the Church is all that God has in mind. God has much more in mind than that. Certainly it is a restoration back to foundational principles of Truth, but there must be a going on from there, to the fullness of Godís intention. And so there are two orders of men, the old one and the new one; and the new one is of a much higher order...

"The first man is of the earth, earthy:
The second Man is the Lord from heaven.
As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy:
And as is the heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly.
And as we have borne the image of the earthy,
We shall also bear the image of the heavenly"
                                         (1 Cor. 15:47-49).

It is strange that we accept the fact that we are like Adam because we are born in Adam and grow up in Adam... NOT IN THE NEXT WORLD BUT IN THIS ONE... but so difficult to comprehend that we are likewise born in the Last Adam, and grow up in the Last Adam, NOT IN THE NEXT WORLD BUT IN THIS ONE. Our problem arises, of course, in not realizing that the first Adam has become the seed-plot for the sowing of the seed that would bring forth the Last Adam. Consequently religion in general has tried to bring about a reconstruction of the old Adam to make him conform to the nature of the New. But quite to the contrary God has ruthlessly dealt with the old Adam, by nailing him to the Cross; and it happened when Christ was "made sin for us, who knew no sin." It was there at the Cross that God "condemned sin in the flesh" in order that the new life of the Spirit might be released, and become the new nature, and the energizing life of the new man in Christ.

The man Adam was the crowning work of Godís creation. He was made "in Godís image"... a man who would represent God Himself in the earth. He was endowed with great wisdom and understanding, by virtue of the fact that he had Godís own image stamped upon him. He had soul life, it is true... even as the animal world about him had soul life. But his was of a higher order. It was Godís breath that came into him; it was Godís image and likeness that he bore.

Upon this man God laid great authority and power, to rule over the earth. But He also laid upon him one restraint: "Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die" (Gen. 2:17). The man would hardly be worthy of one "in the image of God" if he could not stand a test... and God subjected him to a very simple test, to prove him worthy of the image he bore, and the power that had been given to him. God help us to understand that He is testing us, and will continue to test us, in one degree or another; and that it is not to destroy us, but to prove us and try us that we might be accounted worthy to be called the sons of God.

A Help, A Counterpart For Adam

This is next in Godís provision. "And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him" (Gen. 2:18). Or, "a help... suitable for him." This one would be his like, and yet different: his counterpart, his complement, one that would be his glory, one to make him complete.

But before God proceeds to do this He tells us something else that seems to be irrelevant to what God had in mind:

"And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof."

And then in the same context the Scriptures go on to say, "But for Adam there was not found an help Ďmeet for him"í (vs. 19,20).

So in the context of what is written is this thought: Adam in naming the various creatures that came before him, was evidently quite aware of the fact that he was "alone"... there was no one his like, his counterpart. The other creatures were not alone, each had its mate; but in all that he observed in the creation about him, there was no one suitable for himself, no one his kind, his like, his counterpart.

Some would shrug off this matter of Adam naming the various creatures... who couldnít put a name on an animal? But we have to understand that Bible names have significance; and whether it be people, or things, or places, or cities, they are so named because of the nature of these things, or because of something that would happen relative to these things or these individuals. Adam had this inherent wisdom and perception to know and understand the meaning or the purpose for which God had created all things, and he named them accordingly; but he found in all of his association with creation nothing that could give him that sense of completeness and fullness. "But for Adam there was not found an help"... Adam was alone....

Until God did something very unusual, and something very different to what He had done up till that time. "And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and He took one of the ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; and the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made He a woman, and brought her unto the man" (Gen. 2:21, 22).

Adam was asleep while all this was going on, but on awakening he beheld for the first time that one creature that he had not seen when he was naming all the other creatures of Godís original handiwork. Again, he knew intuitively what God had done, and he understood that this one was truly a part of himself, one his like, one with him:

"This is now bone of my bones, And flesh of my flesh: She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of Man" (Gen. 2:23).

But I understand the word "now" has this thought: "Now at last..." As if to say, "I knew I was alone... I saw the beauty of Godís creation... but in and through it all I remained detached... there was nothing I saw that was truly completive for myself... NOW AT LAST, this is the one."

He knew instinctively that she came from his side. He knew that she was taken out from him to be joined to him again. He knew that in this mystical union God was establishing a pattern for the race that would come into being. He knew that families would come from this union, and that his kind would be perpetuated in the earth. "Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh" (Gen. 2:24). Now when God had created them, He "called their name Adam." But it was Adam that would name the other creatures: and knowing instinctively what God had done he called his wife "Woman"... for she was "taken out of man." And then more specifically he named her "Eve"Ö "because she was the mother of all living" (Gen. 3:20).

Now as we know, this history of our early beginnings has become the basis of family relationships, and of the order of the home; and it is recognized as such by the Lord Jesus, and by the apostles. When the subject of "divorce" came up, Jesus replied that "from the beginning it was not so," and therefore it was not right. God only allowed it because of "the hardness of your hearts." (See Matt. 19:8; Mark 10:5-9.) We must always go back to beginnings, to discover Godís plan. What He did in the beginning was good. We must grow and develop from there, even as the seed germinates and grows and develops in the earth. And so the apostle Paul lays out Godís plan for the home, based on what God did at the beginning:

"Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God. Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the Church: and he is the saviour of the body. Therefore as the Church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything" (Eph. 5:21-24).

Only a rebellious spirit thinks this to be a grievous arrangement; and in this rebellious generation it is not at all surprising that laws and constitutions, in the Church and in the world, are being changed to accommodate this rebellion. With it there has come into being such a breakdown of the home and the family that neither the government, nor the society, nor the Church, have been able to come up with any solutions. It all started with rebellion against God, and a refusal to acknowledge that God was the Author and the Creator of this divine order; and it is taught rather that manís headship over the woman was something that evolved out of the cave and primeval ignorance. It was not the law of Moses that started Godís order in the family; it was the law of creation, the law of life. "From the beginning it was not so", because creation did not evolve from a meaningless mass of matter and slime... it came forth fresh from the hand of God. There would be a development and further unfolding of Godís purposes, as the seed sprouted and grew in the earth; but it is all inherent there in the seed.

And so even in the first man and the first woman we have a picture of what God will have in the New Creation order. It has begun now... and we may begin to look for the unfolding of Godís order in our lives as God continues to bring us out of the old order and into the new, out of the old Adam and into the New. It is a time of transition... a time of change. The old order was cursed by the Fall... but God brings forth the New out of the old, by the work of redeeming grace.

Chapter 6 - A Bride for the Last Adam
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