And the LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed. Genesis 2:8
[This is taken from the Introduction to a book in process, Garden Coins.
If you want to read some sample pages from this gardening devotional click on the title above.]
God loves gardens. During Creation Week, amidst all the beauty and perfection of a fresh new world— as only an omnipotent Creator could make it —God still planted a garden. This special area of Paradise, called the Garden of Eden, was to be the home and school for our first parents.
Here God would personally visit with them and instruct them. On this soil were planted two very special trees, the Tree of Life and the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. Here man and woman would decide their destiny. And here Heaven’s plan of restoration and the coming Redeemer was first revealed to earth’s earliest sinners.
Four thousand years later, when the Son of God came to fulfill the covenant made and recover truths lost in traditions and inventions of man, He would use elements of the garden (seeds, tares, soil types, flowers, etc.) to illustrate many of the great themes of the kingdom of Heaven.
But gardens played another part in Jesus’ life and ministry.
Jesus would often take His disciples to a special garden for prayer, meditation, and solace. It was in that garden, the Garden of Gethsemane, where our Saviour was braced for His imminent sacrifice and then betrayed by one of His own trusted disciples.
It was in a garden tomb where the lifeless form of Christ was laid to rest after His crucifixion.
And it was in that garden where the powers of hell and death were shattered when Christ rose from the dead on the third day.
Gardens obviously have a special place in God’s heart. But why does gardening and farming and landscaping have such an attraction to man? There is yet one more garden the Bible mentions where God desired to come close to man and teach him divine mysteries.
Jeremiah 31:12 … their soul shall be as a watered garden (see also Isaiah 58:11)
Within the first 38 verses of the 31,101 verses in the Bible, the unique relationship between man and the soil and plants is quickly established. We are told God used soil for making several things: among them were plants – Gen.1:12 and the first human, Adam – Gen. 2:7. So by having the same source, plants and people should have at least some things in common. The Bible seems to think so, for it compares people to grass, flowers, trees, vines, weeds, roots, branches, etc. . . and calls the results of their life FRUIT .
As we look closer we notice people are designed to live on two types of food and water: physical and spiritual. But plants are also designed to live on two types of food & water: “earthly” and “heavenly”. Roots deal with nutrients and water in the ground, and leaves process sunlight, nutrient-filled moisture, and carbon dioxide above ground. Obviously, the quality of each is important to life & health.
When our time is through the essence of life returns to God and the lifeless body returns to the dust, just like the plants. In that brief “garden interlude” character is formed, fruit is harvested, and destiny decided, just as it happened in the Garden of Eden.
When we use counterparts to study gardening we talk about minerals and soil and microbial life and energies and many other things. To get started, let’s listen to some basic “chemistry” interacting between the physical and spiritual worlds. You will see the “chemistry” remains the same, but is expressed differently in the two worlds. Four elements essential for physical life resonate with another four elements vital for spiritual life. Click here.