4. Theology of Genesis 2: Creation of Man


*DISCLAIMER: I am using the Douay-Rheims versions of the bible if any of you are interested and all the texts posted are from there.


Chapter 2

So the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the furniture of them.

2 And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made: and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had done.

3 And he blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.

4 These are the generations of the heaven and the earth, when they were created, in the day that the Lord God made the heaven and the earth:

5 And every plant of the field before it sprung up in the earth, and every herb of the ground before it grew: for the Lord God had not rained upon the earth; and there was not a man to till the earth.

6 But a spring rose out of the earth, watering all the surface of the earth.

7 And the Lord God formed man of the slime of the earth: and breathed into his face the breath of life, and man became a living soul.

8 And the Lord God had planted a paradise of pleasure from the beginning: wherein he placed man whom he had formed.

9 And the Lord God brought forth of the ground all manner of trees, fair to behold, and pleasant to eat of: the tree of life also in the midst of paradise: and the tree of knowledge of good and evil.

10 And a river went out of the place of pleasure to water paradise, which from thence is divided into four heads.

11 The name of the one is Phison: that is it whichcompasseth allthe landofHevilath, where gold groweth.

12 And the gold of that land is very good: there is found bdellium, and the onyx stone.

13 And the name of the second river is Gehon: the same is it that compasseth all the land of Ethiopia. 14 And the name of the third river is Tigris: the same passeth along by the Assyrians. And the fourth river is Euphrates.

15 And the Lord God took man, and put him into the paradise of pleasure, to dress it, and to keep it.

16 And he commanded him, saying: Of every tree of paradise thou shalt eat:

17 But of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat. For in what day soever thou shalt eat of it, thou shalt die the death.

18 And the Lord God said: It is not good for man to be alone: let us make him a help like unto himself. 19 And the Lord God having formed out of the ground all the beasts of the earth, and all thefowlsoftheair, broughtthemtoAdamtosee what he would call them: for whatsoever Adam called any living creature the same is its name.

20 And Adam called all the beasts by their names, and all the fowls of the air, and all the cattle of the field: but for Adam there was not found a helper like himself.

21 Then the Lord God cast a deep sleep upon Adam: and when he was fast asleep, he took one of his ribs, and filled up flesh for it.

22 And the Lord God built the rib which he took from Adam into a woman: and brought her to Adam. 23 And Adam said: This now is bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called woman, because she was taken out of man.

24 Wherefore a man shall leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they shall be two in one flesh.

25 And they were both naked: to wit, Adam and his wife: and were not ashamed.




Verses 1-6: Through these verses we see the end of all creation by God’s hand leaving one extra day of the week which is the sabbath day. There are two important parts to note about the sabbath day; one is that God rested on the sabbath day after a week of hard work during creation and two is that He sanctified the day to make it a day that is giving honour, glory and thanksgiving to God for His gifts to us.

In verse 4, there is a distinction between plural and singular once again starting with generations of heaven and earth and in the day the Lord God made heaven and earth. This difference in language is important because it helps us to understand God without being able to understand how everything happened. Take for instance how we think, first we come up with an idea and it’s all set up and planned out. This idea can be related to the heaven and earth being made in one day. The next part of having the idea and everything set up in our minds is to make that idea come to life before our eyes, which would be the tangible heaven and earth being created.

The last interesting concept to note during this time is referring to the plants that were made. So in verse 5-6 it says that the plants did not grow until after everything was made because it did not rain on the earth and there was no man to till the ground. The plants were just seeds and not physical plants yet, which led to a spring flowing out of the earth to nurture the little seeds to grow. However the trees still existed in full form because trees are much more resilient than little plants.


Verses 7-9: I found it interesting to read in these verses how man was made more specifically. Adam was made from the slime of the earth. When I think of slime I don’t think of anything pleasant and this is exactly in direct link with Genesis 1 where God did not explicitly state that humans were a good creation. It is in the fact that we were going to be rebellious against God and that we were created from the Earth’s wastes. However, as bad as we are as humans, God still gave us His breath which is the Holy Spirit to give us a living soul. I want to go back to Genesis 1 again because we have a more full explanation of the “image and likeness” of God. Firstly the breath or spirit of God is the first image and likeness with the fact that us as humans are alive and not only alive but eternal. The next image and likeness is Jesus Christ, our Lord, also known as the truth or the word of God, which is why Adam was able to name all the creatures and have understanding of things that would otherwise seem impossible. The last, is the image and likeness of God the Father, which is the ability to create and have dominion over all creation just as He does. A key point about all this is that all the aspects of God were received through God’s breath or His spirit. From one part of God, Adam received all parts of God showing that they are all equal and one and the same.

In the rest of the verses, we see that there is a note of importance on two trees in paradise. We can safely assume that there were many different types of trees, but the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil are extremely important.


Verses 10-15: There is no large amount of theology here, but I wish to stress, for those that are interested, that we can find exactly where paradise was located because of these two rivers and we can see that it is surprisingly close to modern day Israel and ancient Israel. If you are interested search the rivers they mention in Genesis 2 on google to get an ancient map.


Verses 16-17: There is a great importance that God specifically said not to eat from the tree of knowledge, but with no mention of the tree of life. The reason that God has said it this way is because they didn’t know about death yet. They would find out about death through the tree of knowledge because it would all of a sudden make sin and grace understood to man. Also, the fact that God warned Adam not to eat of this tree was also giving humans a chance to obey God from the beginning, but knew if we ate of it (and so we did) that would fall into sin through understanding of good and evil and disobeying God’s command. At the same time, if they ate from the tree of knowledge then they would know about dying and the tree of life would all of a sudden have extreme importance.


Verses 18-25: A very interesting point to note in the beginning of these verses is that God did not want Adam to be alone and that he should have a helper. It made me think why God, who is alone, would actually say that it is not good for man to be alone. I realized then that God is not alone because He is three persons in one. Thus, God deems it good to have good company. It is better to be with a companion according to the vocation God has sent you than to be completely alone. Whether that be a holy friend or to have a partner in marriage a companion in God is always a good thing. Moving on now to the creation of Eve, we see that she is formed directly from Man as a helper. I know if there are women who read this they might be very offended and I wish for you to read theology on Genesis 1 that regardless of what position you are in on the chart (keep in mind than man and woman have the same dominion over all creatures) that we are all subject to God in the end. It doesn’t matter how you are subject to Him, but it is just and right to be subject to Him in the way He wants and not the way we want it. Knowing woman’s position now, we see that Adam and Eve are still the same person and the same essence. “This now is bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh...” and with that being said Adam made the decree that man will leave their parents for their wife because of the union and love between the two. So for women, you are helpers of man, and men leave everything out of love for their woman. I think this is a rather favourable trade because it is normal to be a helper to man who has left everything he has for you. Love can only perfectly exist with two cooperative people who wish only good for each other and not only themselves.


Verses 25: At the end of this chapter we see that Adam and Eve were both naked, but had no shame because they were perfect and pure. We feel exposed and ashamed and hide ourselves naturally when we are naked because we know that we are impure. If we felt truly okay with our nakedness (not in the sense for entertainment or for pleasure as some do) but in an honest normal way that would be a person who is entirely sinless. Even then it has been known that those who are naked are scandalous and wretched and it stems from our innate knowledge that we are impure.

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