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Genesis Framework Part 16


Genesis Framework Pt 16


Genesis Framework
GF 16 2 Samuel 22.31
October 11, 2015
Part 16

NKJ 2 Samuel 22:31
As for God, His way is perfect; The word of the LORD is proven; He is a shield to all who trust in Him.

(Q) What specific or concrete duties were assigned to original man of Eden in the outworking of the kingdom of God?

Today we will look at the principle of the imitation of God– which is the fundamental and comprehensive norm of man’s life that God inscribed on original man’s heart as
image-bearer of God.

God gave activities to man in his kingdom that he was expected to do in order to take the same direction taken by the Lord in His works of creation and providence. Providence- a description of God’s sovereign care provided by the combination of natural and supernatural agencies at work in the context of the Edenic protectorate of God, which secured the blessedness of man in Eden.

We can legitimately draw a parallel between God’s covenant expectations of Adam and ancient suzerain kings treaty expectations of their subject vassal kings.

Let’s review the formal structure of the covenant treaty.

1. Preamble– This identified the Great King. “I am the LORD your God”

2. Historical Prologue– What the Great King had done for the vassals. “I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land
of slavery.”

3. Stipulations– The Great King’s rules and requirements. One great example is the Ten Commandments.

4. Blessings and Sanctions– This spells out the benefits for those who keep the treaty, and punishments for those who do not keep the treaty. Ancient Near Eastern kings usually evicted and exiled treaty breakers.

5. Deposit of Treaty/Public reading/Ceremony and sealing– Both parties kept a copy of the treaty in their sacred temples and vassals were required to publicly and regularly read the treaty so that succeeding generations understood their obligations.

Sound biblical and historical evidence points to the conclusion that each of the two tables of the Ten Commandments was complete in itself. The two tables were duplicate copies of the covenant. The correctness of this interpretation is decisively confirmed by the fact that it was normal procedure in establishing suzerainty covenants to prepare duplicate copies of the treaty (covenant) text.

3. Stipulations– defining the services to be rendered by the vassal to the overlord. This usually included a general statement of the essential character of the lord-servant
relationship in the treaty. In a similar way the law of the Creator’s Covenant of Works with Adam distinguished the nature of the relationship between God and man, and the specific duties assigned to man.

As to the relationship in the Covenant of Works with man, a likeness to God is the primary basis of the relationship.Man’s likeness to God is signified by both notions of
image of God and son of God. Since man is created in likeness to God, he is expected to be like God.

It is a gift from the Creator to make man like God in His image; subsequently, man is expected to act like God and to be like God.In this we see an underlying principle at work:
gifts from God come with a responsibility to use them to glorify God. By being formed in the image of God, man is informed by an intrinsic sense of deity by which he does not merely know that God is, but he knows what God is like.

Romans 1:19-21
19 because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them.
20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse,
21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened.

And knowledge of what one’s Father God is like, is knowledge of what, in a semblance of creaturely ways, what one must be like himself. In turn, with the sense of deity comes conscience, which intensifies the mode of the knowledge of what God is like to the level of imperative, with the expectation to be like God, to imitate what God is like, and so to do the things that God does. Keep in mind that we are discussing the relationship between God and man as found in the pre-redemptive estate.

However, in so far as the relationship between God and man is re-established in redemptive history, we find that the ultimate standard of the imitation of God principle continues to be the covenantal norm that is written supernaturally upon the tables of the new heart of the believer, and to a limited, yet real extent, on the heart of natural man.

In Eden, man is commissioned by God to perform various functions in the kingdom outworking, which are actually the application of the imitation of God principle.

The most general expectations of man as a standard in his relationship with God comes from the example of God Himself. God loves Himself supremely and glorifies Himself.Therefore, acting in the imitation of God, man must love God supremely and make it his primary objective to glorify God.

In the very first catechism question of the Westminster Confession of Faith, we find this universal truth for all time stated succinctly as follows:

Q. 1. What is the chief and highest end of man?

A. Man's chief and highest end is to glorify God, and fully to enjoy him forever.

Since all glory has its source in God Himself, it is only by reflecting the holy Glory-light of the divine Original that the human image glorifies God.By the same God-example, since God loves His covenant children; they are to love one another.

God reigns over the entire cosmos and creates within it a holy temple of His Glory; therefore, His human image-bearer must exercise dominion (under God) over the world, and seek to sanctify it for the presence of the Creator-Lord. In a coincidental manner, since God hates Satan and his evil company; man must hate the Devil.So here again the imitation of God and the love of God coincide.

While the notion of “man created in the image of God” finds its expression in terms of man as sons of God, the image idea compared with the idea of the original, is a reminder that the image is like the Spirit-Archetype; but the image is secondary, it is not the original. So also, though man as the son is like the Creator-Father, the son is derived and therefore under the authority of his Father, and is obliged to render obedience to his divine parent.

So, the Father-son relationship of man is coincidental also with the Lord-servant relationship. As a point of interest, in the language of the ancient treaty diplomacy, father-son terminology was used for the suzerain-vassal king relationship.

So from the very beginning the primary obligation of covenant life has been what we find in Matthew 4.10:“You shall worship the Lord your God and Him only shall you serve.”

NKJ 2 Samuel 22:31
As for God, His way is perfect; The word of the LORD is proven; He is a shield to all who trust in Him.

NKJ Matthew 5:48
"Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.

The covenant servant-son must be what is called in Hebrew tamperfect,” a term which, when used to express the obligation imposed by the covenant, denotes genuine, sincere religious devotion. This is tantamount to saying that the confession of a covenant servant to his Lord must come from a sincerity borne of a whole-heart commitment. It is interesting that our western interpretation of the New Testament sense of the use of the term “perfect” tends to imply a perfection based on preciseness of obedience to do certain possibly even with a detached sort of attitude, with a focus on the things done rather than the motivation in doing them. But the true Hebrew sense of meaning of perfect, in this context, is descriptive of an obedience that is whole-heartedly motivated, resulting in the fully-committed action of the doer to express his love for God, by doing the will of God, to glorify God.

This love of God was part of the theocratic order in the beginning, where the love of God is the consecration principle in action at a conscious level, as a religious Devotion, and where personal devotion to God was expressed by obedience to the particular requirements of kingdom activity.

Many will be surprised on the Day of Judgment when they discover that it was just as the Word of God says; only the righteousness of Christ is able to save you.All men are sinners and no one can save himself. God is just, so He must punish sin; but He is also merciful, moreover gracious, and offers His Son as the perfect sacrifice in order to purchase a place for you in heaven, which He offers to you as the free gift of eternal life. As we continue to examine man’s earliest duties with regard to the covenant of works, although they can be categorically divided into two distinct types of classes; one in relationship with God, and the other in relationship with fellow man, all covenant stipulations are expressions of the will of the Lord. The law of the covenant is the law of man’s image-sonship.

Jesus is God Incarnate

In order to pay the debt of our sins, He came from Heaven, having been sent by the Father, where He lived a life of perfect obedience to the Father even unto the shameful death upon the cross in order to pay the debt of your sins.This gift must be received by faith, believing that Jesus’ perfect life and Cross Work was His complete and necessary Atonement for your sins, in your behalf.Faith is a gift that comes by the Power of God the Holy Spirit working in a person’s innermost being. The Holy Spirit has the authority and power to quicken your dead spirit, to make it come to life. If you have not done so before this moment, ask Jesus to forgive you your sins, tell Him you’ve stop trying to be your own savior, and ask Him to come into your life right now, and to give you eternal life. Then, in faith believing, thank Him for the gift that He is giving you, the one He paid for in full in your place, in Jesus’ name,AMEN


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Copyright October, 2015
Rev. Jim Craig
All Rights Reserved

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