versailles-gardens     What would it mean if someone told you that they “felt close” to you? Among other things it would probably occur to you that something about the relationship had gone right.

That God created us for relationships is clear from Genesis 2:4-25. Yet, from the rest of Genesis it is clear that something has gone remarkably wrong (see Genesis 4). As we heard on Sunday, God the Father has sent his Son “to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of the cross” (Colossians 1:20). Jesus’ people are seeking relationships as they were intended to, or more simply, they’re seeking communion.

God is presented as the Potter, the Gardner and the Builder, in each case working to provide for the relational needs of his various creatures. First, the earth is in need of a man to cultivate it – so God the Potter forms the man (Adam) from the dust of the earth (Adamah). The man is in need of a relationship with his King, so God the Gardner provides a wonderful garden just outside of his palace as the place where he can relate to his friendly Lord (Genesis 2:10). Finally, the man being alone is not good, so God the Builder makes a woman out of Adam’s rib to be his companion and helper in extending the borders of the Garden.

dirt hands

Notice that for every need, a personal relationship was God’s answer. Notice that in every case, that personal relationship was provided for nothing that the creature had earned or deserved. All was provided for by God; all was of the Lord’s creative and personal grace. Notice that the grace of God is experienced in relationship. Notice that the grace of God is not experienced only in the relationship between the individual man and God but in a complex of relationships. God created us for relationships, and Jesus is in the business of restoring them.

Questions for Conversation

  • Work is an interesting relationship we have with our environment.
    • What is your work?
    •  How do you relate to it?
    • Does work get in the way of a relationship with God?
    • Are the things of the created world distractions from relationship with God in Genesis 2?
  • How have human relationships helped you to relate to God? How have they helped you to relate to work?
  • In Ephesians 5:29-33 the Apostle Paul says that we are the bride of Christ? What connections are being made between Jesus and the Church with Genesis 2?