In the Garden of Eden but not in New Jerusalem

New JerusalemMany recent posts have looked at similarities or parallels between the garden of Eden and New Jerusalem. This post is about four things seen in the garden in Genesis 2–3 but is not seen in the city nor in the new creation in Revelation 21–22.

✦  Genesis 2:9 tells us that in the garden were “every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food, as well as the tree of life in the middle of the garden and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.” This tree of knowledge is not in New Jerusalem, but the tree of life is there on both sides of the river of life which flows from the throne (Revelation 22:1-2).

✦  In Genesis 2:17 God commanded Adam: “of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, of it you shall not eat; for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” This is first spiritual death followed by physical death. In contrast, no death is in New Jerusalem, for Revelation 20:14 records that “death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire.”

✦  In Genesis 3:1-13 the serpent deceived Eve so that she and Adam ate of the tree of knowledge. The serpent is a symbol of Satan. In Revelation 12:9 the Devil, Satan, is “he who deceives the whole inhabited earth.” However, his end will come. In John 16:11 the Lord Jesus tells us that “the ruler of this world has been judged.” The final enactment of this judgement is recorded in Revelation 20:10: “the Devil, who deceived them [the nations], was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone.” Hence, no Devil in New Jerusalem.

✦  In Genesis 3:16-19 the curse came upon mankind, including pain, toil, sweat, and death. Instead of this bleak outlook, Revelation 22:3 says of New Jerusalem, “there will no longer be a curse” and verse 21:4 says of the whole new creation, “He [God] will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and death will be no more, nor will there be sorrow or crying or pain anymore.”

The death and resurrection of Jesus Christ has saved us from death, Satan, and the curse. Now He is living within us, gradually making us wholly new, blameless, and shining to match the blessed condition of New Jerusalem. Praise Him!

Photo courtesy of U.S. National Park Service.

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5 Comments

  1. for it brought death to Adam and Eve when they partook of the fruit: “And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die” (Genesis 2:16–17).

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