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Sabbath: Choose Life — 12 Comments

  1. Our memory text for this week states:

    “I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live” (Deuteronomy 30:19).

    This is not talking about a future as such but about the present. We can choose to live life now. Or, perhaps it would be better to say that if we chose God's way now we will really live now. Hopefully we will learn more about what that really means this coming week.

  2. The lesson states:

    "This week, as we continue in Deuteronomy, we will look at the choice of life, and the opportunity given us to choose life, but to choose it on the terms that God, the Giver and Sustainer of life, has graciously offered."

    Does this last sentence imply that there are other terms upon which life can exist - but that God requires that we do it on His terms?

    Or is it that there is only one way that life can actually exist and God is letting us know what that one and only way is so we can make an informed choice to live in harmony with that one and only way? (Deuteronomy 30:19,20).

    • God is the Creator, and sustainer of all things.
      Colossians 1:16-17
      New International Version
      16 For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. 17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.

    • To not choose life would be to choose death, the logical outcome of not choosing God. This is what's so amazing about God's Grace, in that He 1) holds back the natural consequences of death or 2)'deflects the arrows'of the Evil One, in order that we might turn again and choose Him.

  3. Has anyone considered when it would have been the right time for Adam and Eve to be allowed to partake of the 'Tree of Life'? Living in the Garden of Eden given to them by our Maker, at what point might/would He have thought it right to give them access to this special tree? What might have been the 'condition', the 'threshold' to be reached, the 'marker' to establish this point in time?

    This is mankind's second chance to be the creature which pleases God and so partakes in the privilege of being eligible to eat of the Tree of Life and live forever. God offered "His Way' to all who believe; following this 'Way' laid out before us by His Son, our Savior, tells us that we need to walk in it by faith.
    It is clear that eternal life is only available to man if he fulfills a certain 'standard/condition' established by his Maker. It appears that Adam and Eve missed this point, took God's advise too lightly, and succumbed to the temptation of God's adversary.

    Deut.30:6 records the promise God made when the wayward in heart return their heart toward loving Him with all their heart and with all their soul; believing that if they do so they may live. As it was in the Garden, the living soul will die when the heart is turned away from his/her Maker, but when it returns, it will live; this is God's promise to all who seek to find Him by loving Him faithfully.

    God made man a living soul to live here on earth only for a short time. This life-time is extremely precious; it is to be spent seeking to become again the child of God which is pleasing in His sight. We trust our beloved Savior's leading as He prepares us to become partakers of the Tree of Life.

    • I believe you will find the answer in Genesis 2:9,16, 17.

      Think: Where was the tree of life located?

      Did the Lord withhold the fruit of two trees from our first parents or the fruit one tree?

      What did God not want Adam and Eve to experience?

      What is your conclusion regarding your question?

  4. Inge, I was discussing the two trees with my husband and his nephew. His nephew believes that Adam and Eve did eat from the tree of life, but I don't recall seeing any biblical evidence to show that. My thought is that if they had eaten from the tree of life, wouldn't they have eternal life already, which would negate the need for Christ to come and die for us? I'm not sure if that's accurate, and I would love to hear other people's thoughts.

    • Karen, I believe they did eat from the tree of life, but that eternal life needs continued "eating", as Jesus says pick up your cross daily, not just a once off. Just as we surrender our will to the LORD daily.
      I believe the Tree of Life had a literal as well as spiritual effect.

      In heaven it says the tree has different fruit every month, so probably we would eat from it at least once a month.
      Rev 22:2 MKJV  In the midst of its street, and of the river, from here and from there, was the Tree of Life, which bore twelve fruits, each yielding its fruit according to one month. And the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.

      Adam and Eve were sent out of the garden so they couldn't eat of the Tree of Life anymore. Without it they started dying, however I believe the physical effects of the Tree of Life is the reason that Adam, and descendants, before the flood lived so long - some over 900 years!

      • Thanks for your response Shirley! I hadn't considered the aspect of a different fruit every month affecting things.

    • Hi Karen,
      I agree with Shirley. The Tree of Life was one of the trees in the garden, and the pair were told they could eat freely of every tree except one - the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and evil.
      While the Tree of Life was a real tree, it was also a symbolic reminder of humanity's constant dependence on the Creator for continued life.
      When Adam and Eve rebelled against the Creator's authority, they cut themselves off from their Source of life, the Creator Himself. He had provided the Tree of Life as a source of continuing vitality and reminder of their continuing dependence on Him for life.
      In the sanctuary, the Israelites had the Table of Showbread to remind them of the Bread of Life - the Messiah to come.
      Thus it seems to me that in Eden, the Tree of Life symbolized the Creator, just as the Showbread and the manna did for Israel.

      • Thank you Inge for your response! I will share your and Shirley's responses with my husband. I love how this forum helps us learn from so many people.

    • Hello Karen -
      I appreciate your interest in this topic. My initial question was based on 'access' to the Tree of Life. Was the right to access and eat of the Tree part of eating the 'fruit for food' offered in the garden. If so, I see that it was because they did not go against the Will of God, but were denied access when they went against God's wishes, eating the fruit of the Tree of good and evil - Gen.3:22-24; v.24 " .... he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the 'WAY of the Tree of life'. If find the wording "Way of the Tree of life" interesting. So, what really happened that caused them to loose their privilege to 'continue' to eat from the Tree of Life? - Gal.5:4KJV.

      I found an interesting article at a website called "Life Hope & Truth" entitled: 'The Tree of Life' by Larry Salyer. Regarding access to the fruit he writes: "Eating the fruit of the tree of life represents choosing total reliance on God to show what is good or evil (through His law and Holy Spirit). Eating the fruit of the latter tree represented human beings choosing for themselves what is good and evil, rejecting any direction from God."
      This article is much longer, but I agree with the understanding that 'eating the Tree of Life's fruit' represents living in total reliance on God. When looking at the story of the Garden of Eden as an allegory or parable, it shows me the difference between self-reliance and reliance on God; those who singularly rely on Him have access to the 'Tree of Life' at all times! Indirectly, we do enjoy this privilege by having accepted His Authority to govern our life.

      I wonder if only humans need to eat continuously of the Tree of Life in order to stay alive - not physically, but spiritually, because they depend on God for everything. Though clothed with our new body, are we still in *need* of eating of the Tree of Life, or is it a continuous privilege underscoring/enhancing our allegiance to the Creator?
      The 'Tree of Life' is in the New City Jerusalem and only accessed by those living there. If it were a literal tree from which millions upon millions *needing* to eat to sustain their eternal life, how would this logistically be able to be worked out?
      I lean toward thinking of these two trees are allegorical and representing a spiritual Truth.


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