"We must trust, though we seem alone, there are others walking with us."

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Friday, January 1, 2010

Day 1: God saw that it was good

Today I have begun to read through the Bible chronologically.

Today's Reading: Genesis 1-3.

I was struck by the phrase "God saw that it was good."

There are really only 3 Hebrew words in this phrase:
Elohim, a plural form of the word God;
ra'ah, meaning to perceive, to regard, to give attention to;
and towb, which carries with it the essence of "pleasant," "appropriate," and "excellence."

This is the picture that comes to my mind:

After a day of work, Elohim sit around the dinner table discussing the accomplishments, challenges and tidbits of the day. There is a hearty and affirming cheer as the review of the day is finished and congratulatory pats of joy are given to the backs.

"What a good day! Well done! Good job!"

And with this affirmation comes the excitement and hope that the next day will be full of yet more beauty, excellence and goodness.

So I must ask myself as one created in the image of Elohim; what will be the consensus of Elohim as my day's work is discussed today? Will there be time to perceive, regard and give it attention? Or will I go through the day unaware of what I am creating in my presence by the words I speak, the tasks I accomplish, the "being" I project or unconscious of the wake I leave in my path? Will I discuss it at the Eucharistic table with Elohim? And what will be the response from Father God and Brother Christ and Mother Spirit?

O, to hear, "Well done, good and faithful daughter! And tomorrow is yet to come. I wonder what excellence will be seen in you in the coming day."


  1. What fun! I just opened a blogspot account too! Check facebook for my url.

    You, my dear, are inspirational!

  2. We should be going about our lives each day in such a way to have God wonder "what excellence will be seen in you in the coming day".

  3. Why didn't the serpent have them eat from both the tree of life and the tree of knowledge of good and evil? Why was just the tree of knowledge the forbidden tree and not the tree of life, also?

  4. Good questions, Steph.

    The tree of life is referred to multiple times in Proverbs and Revelation. In Proverbs, the tree of life is Wisdom (a pre-incarnational image of Jesus Christ for Christians.) Wisdom is beyond the knowledge of good and evil in scripture. Wisdom connotes not only knowledge, but discernment and action in righteousness.

    Thus, for instance, Joseph, Mary's betrothed, knew right from wrong, and being a righteous man, did not have Mary stoned as was the letter of the law, but instead planned to put her away quietly. But then, after the revelation that came to him from God, he did neither what the law allowed nor what he thought righteous, but what was truly the fruit of the tree of life...he came in line with the will of God.

    Now, many believe that the tree of life offers eternal life, and God saved humanity from an eternal life of sin by keeping humanity from eating of the tree of life after eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

    In revelation, the tree of life is eternal, righteous and kingdom-bearing-fruit life. Perhaps this tree of life is a paradigm for Christ which he hints to when he speaks of himself as the "vine," which in Greek is really a word like "that which comes up from the root."

    So, perhaps, Jesus is saying, "I am the trunk and you are the branches; if you abide in me (the tree of life) you will bear much fruit."

    And, of course, in the eucharistic meal, we do eat from our Lord, the tree of life. When having his theological discussion with Martha after the death of her brother, Lazarus, Jesus says in John 11:26, "The one who lives (abides) in and believes in me shall never die."

    So, according to Proverbs, John and Revelation, if all these passages are related, one could argue that ingesting, believing and abiding in Christ is participating in the tree of life; thus life giving, life sustaining and life eternal.