Published on: Jan 24, 2008
When most people consider the passage in Genesis 2:19 & 20, they believe that Adam had the job of naming animals. This, however, is wrong. Yes, Adam had a job, which is declared in Genesis 2:15 – he was to “dress and keep” the garden that God had placed him in. A natural stretch of logic, includes naming animals as part of that job. However, it is in the context of finding a mate for Adam that he “names” the animals.
18 And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.
19 And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.
20 And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him. (KJV)
Before I met my wife, Jesus dropped into my spirit the truth of that passage. God was testing Adam to see if he could recognize which creature would be an appropriate mate for him. When Adam named the animals, he was not creating names for the animals, but rather stating what they actually were. In essence he spoke the same word that God spoke to create the animals. He saw their spirits as well as their bodies. Adam passed the test. He knew that none of them were appropriate as mates (v. 20). After passing the test, He was put to sleep and the appropriate mate was created for him (v. 21 & 23).
We naturally assume in reading this passage that Adam was creating names for the animals because that is part of our unregenerate thinking which is the blinder for us all today. Instead of seeing what is actually there, we automatically categorize everything to fit into our preconceived ideas. Everything is given a label. Black, White, Hispanic or Asian. Choleric, Melancholic, Sanguine or Phlegmatic. Liberal or conservative. Democrat or Republican. And on and on and on it goes.
Even in the church the naming of people continues: Catholic or Protestant, Baptist or Pentecostal, and so on. This natural tendency to categorize is a cheat sheet. See a few common characteristics, and vola! pigeon-holed! have you pegged.
I submit that this is why God told the Jews that He did not want graven images made of Him (Exodus 20:4). I further submit that almost all Christians have a mental graven image of God. We try to conform God to our image of Him instead of seeing Him for who He really is. The great body of doctrines taught about God create the basis of the mental image of God in their minds today. Knowing a person only comes from direct observation of that person. Reading about a person is second hand information that creates a bias, or blinders, in seeing that person. There are great principals of scientific observation that should be applied to God. My father was a scientist, and he taught me before I was ever a believer in Christ, to always observe for yourself thoroughly first hand the object of inquiry, before consulting second opinions. When I came to Christ, I did that with my reading of the Bible. I did not read commentaries until about 5 years later, after having read the Bible from Genesis to Revelation 5 or 6 times.
In my 24 year walk with Jesus, I am constantly checking His response to me in all my actions, whether considered virtuous or sinful by the church. Yesterday in my morning prayer I realized that I can quote Polycarp for my life as he did when facing his martyrdom and he was offered life instead of death if he recanted:
I have not served Jesus for 54 years, but I know that even when in full rebellion to Him, all my life, Jesus has been good to me.
Saints, it is time to remove the blinders of categorization of God and man, and to see God and people for who they really are. Adam passed his test. I passed my test when Jesus dropped that realization into my heart, and saw the spirit of my wife to be who was bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh. But passing the test once is not enough. Blinders can be put back on again. Fault finding, criticizing, judging one another are blinders that stop us from seeing who we are.
Likewise, religious opinions of God blind us to seeing who God really is. Andrew Wommack made a cogent observation about healing. Jesus said that he only said what the Father told him to say (John 8:28). Jesus further said, If you see me you see the Father (John 14:9). Wommack asked the question, where in the gospel did Jesus ever make anyone sick? Jesus only did what God told him to do. When we see Jesus we see the Father, so the Father does not make people sick. Yet doctrines blind us to seeing this simple truth.
Let us remove our blinders from God and see Him for who He really is. All our lives he has done us all nothing but good.