In Genesis 1 and 2, God utters declarative statements (or imperatives) such as:
“Let there be lights in the firmament of heaven. . . . Let the earth bring forth living creatures. . . . It’s not good for man to be alone.” All these declarations deal with Creation, and with establishing humanity in that Creation. As we saw yesterday, the next declarative statement recorded in the Bible occurs in Genesis 3:14-15, in which the Lord offers humanity the gospel.
Thus, in Scripture, God’s initial declarative statements deal with Creation and then with redemption—and this redemption occurs in the context of judgment itself. It would have to. After all, what’s the purpose of the gospel, what’s the “good news,” if there were no judgment, no condemnation from which to be spared? The very concept of “the gospel” carries within itself the concept of condemnation, a condemnation that we don’t have to face. That’s the “good news”!
Though we have violated God’s law and though God will judge those violations, in Christ Jesus we are spared the condemnation that this judgment would, inevitably, bring.
Creation, gospel, and judgment appear not only in the early pages of the Bible but in the latter, as well. Read Revelation 14:6-7. In what ways are these verses linked to the first three chapters of Genesis? That is, what parallel ideas are found in all these verses?
In Revelation 14:6-7 we see a declaration of God as the Creator, a key theme in the opening pages of Genesis. In Revelation 14, however, the “everlasting gospel” comes first and then is followed by the announcement of judgment, as in Genesis 3. Judgment is there, but not before the gospel. Thus, the foundation of our present—truth message has to be grace, the good news that though we deserve condemnation we can stand pardoned, purified, and justified through Jesus. Without the gospel, our destiny would be the same as the serpent’s and his seed, not the destiny of the woman and her seed. And, fascinatingly enough, this great news appears even in Eden, in God’s first declarative words to a fallen world.