Sunday, October 11, 2009
Earlier this year one of my students observed that if Adam & Eve hadn't sinned, and been thrown out of Eden, none of us would exist. I responded that yes, to the extent that Adam & Eve's (or any human's) exercise of free will affects (and even effects) the future, if A&E were today still sinless in Eden, I, for example, wouldn't exist. My parents had to exist, meet, marry, etc. which wouldn't've happened in an Edenic world. But there would still have been other people, just not you or I.
But weren't A&E alone in Eden, she asked? Uh-oh. Sometimes I think on my feet, and sometimes I decide the best answer is: I DON'T KNOW! That's what I said this time, and added it was a great question, and I'd have an answer next week.
Sons & Daughters, y'all remember last week a question about whether or not there were other people in Eden with Adam & Eve? Yes. Oh, you do...I'm impressed. Well then, tell me who were Adam and Eve? They were the first man & woman. Yes, and who'd God make first? Adam. Yes, and God made him from....dirt! Good, and Eve was made second, from....Adam's rib! Yeah, and what's usually better, to be first or second? First! And what's better, to be made from dirt, or a person's rib? Umm...a rib! So who had the advantage between A & E? They're about the same, I guess. Yes, pretty equal. So, were they cousins? No, there weren't any cousins yet. Oh, yeah, I forgot. Were they brother & sister? No, they were married! They were husband & wife! That's right!
Here's a question: what's the First Commandment for us? Love the LORD thy God & have no other Gods before him. Yep. And what was the first commandment for A&E? Well, we said it already: LovetheLORDthyGod&havenootherGodsbeforehim! Ha! Wrong! Trick question! Who did God give the Commandments to...Adam? No, Moses! Who came later, Moses or Adam? Uhh, Moses! So did Adam know anything about however-many Commandment thingies? Ummm....no, they didn't exist yet! Right! So back to the trick question....what was the first commandment for Adam & Eve? IknowIknow! Don't eat the fruit! Ha-Ha, I am the King of Trick Questions! No! That came later! But that's a good answer.
OK, lets read a bit from Genesis. When you hear the first commandment God gives A&E, say it out loud.
"Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth." 27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. 28 And God blessed them, and God said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it; and have dominion over....IknowIknowbefruitful&multiply! Yes, be fruitful & multiply....weird commandment. How would A&E grow fruit off themselves or need to know how to multiply? Stratopops, it means to have babies! Oh yeah, that's right...why didn't God just say so?
Anyway, A&E are in Eden, they just got created.....have they disobeyed God yet? No! So if they're obeying God they must be.....having babies? Sure, unless you can imagine A&E saying, "God we'd like to be obedient'n'all, but we wanna lay around on the beach, check out the pizza buffet, relax some...since we can't die we'll be fruiful later on, in 50 years or so...what's the rush? Don't worry, we're gonna obey ya!" Ha, that's silly.
Yes, so my guess is Adam and Eve had kids in the Garden before they sinned and were thrown out. They were just being obedient....up until they weren't being obedient. And after they sinned and were being thrown out, God said to Eve,"I will greatly multiply your pain in childbearing," which sounds to me like she had already birthed some kids without lots of pain.
I don't think the Church has firmly decided about A&E having kids in Eden. It's an interesting question, but it doesn't affect whether we go to heaven or not. The Church has decided about whether husbands & wives, like A&E, should be fruitful & multiply, though. What's that decision? That husbands & wives should have babies?