No Longer Paradise



In one moment, with one decision, shadowy death came into paradise and what had been the perfect Garden of Eden. It wasn’t supposed to be that way, but the scheme of the serpent to award him a kingdom in this world was granted when Adam and Eve ate the fruit of a tree forbidden to them.


The result?


Paul expresses it in Colossians 1:21 when he speaks of alienation from God. That wording means Adam and Eve (and also we) were objectively banished from God (not simply the Garden) through the barrier that God’s justice had set against the sin of disunion with Him. This is what caused spiritual death.


God had breathed into Adam and Eve “the breath of life” that united them to Him in oneness. The choice they made when they succumbed to the serpent’s guile caused the Spirit to be divorced from the body, the very definition of death.


Their one momentary lapse affects every person born on the earth since then. Satan stalks the earth, possessive of his union with man, and determined to assure his kingdom is not diminished. In his arrogance he believed he could seduce the Son of Man, Jesus, when He came to earth. Jesus, one in the Trinity, had left heaven, would He not want the power on the earth Satan believed he could offer Him?


But he never understood love, that perfect love of God that he abandoned in a bid for power that resulted in what sent him to earth seeking a kingdom of his own.


Even when Adam and Eve broke covenant with God on their part for the false promises of Satan, God still loved them.


As Dave Hickman writes in Closer Than Close:

“…while disunion spreads across the whole earth, God continues to chase after that which He lost at the Fall—union with His bride. Although humans divorced themselves from God, God remained faithful, committed to the union they once shared.”


Few passages of scripture describe this so well as the book of Hosea. The story illustrates His faithfulness as He instructs Hosea to marry a prostitute and who then returns to her adulterous lifestyle after the wedding. Hosea, God’s prophet, is instructed to go after her and bring her back to himself.


And so God has done with each of us.


His mission? To once again be in union with man.


His plan was one Satan could not have imagined or begun to understand. Satan would even believe despite what he saw with Abraham, Isaac, Moses, David, and the rest of the patriarchs that union (re-union) was not possible. If God loved them and gave them laws to follow and sacrifices to make, fine! But what He had hoped for in the beginning when He breathed the breath of Life into Adam could not be undone. Of that, Satan was certain.


Satan’s pride forever caused him to miss the vibrant living truth of God and the power of His love for His creation.


When he did discover the plan, he was determined to upend it. What a preposterous idea! Jesus in perfect union in the Trinity would leave heaven and be planted by the Spirit in the womb of a woman as an infant? Certainly not likely and yet, Satan knew if God pulled it off it would change everything.


Jesus would have all power and be carried by a woman just like the one who had betrayed the union and covenant with God in the first place. He could not let anything to chance.


Max Lucado depicts the struggle in the heavenlies over the story of the Spirit hovering over the woman, Mary, chosen by God to bear His Son, in exciting images in Cosmic Christmas (later reprinted as The Angel’s Story).


 Of course we know the devices of the enemy do not succeed. Jesus is born and all the efforts of Satan through Herod fail completely. But Satan is determined and waits for another chance. He could not comprehend salvation and how it could be possible.


I wonder if we truly understand it. In Closer Than Close Dave Hickman states it clearly:


“But for salvation to be possible by faith, Jesus had to unite the fullness of humanity with the fullness of divinity within his own person. In order for human sin to be forgiven, an actual human had to die. God’s justice demanded this since it was humans who sinned and not God himself.


And yet, only one who was absolutely God could atone for sin! Therefore, Christ had to serve as an atonement (at-one-ment) uniting divinity and humanity within his person. If not, then humanity’s sin could not be divinely forgiven.”


Without this, there could be no re-union and there could be no hope for man.


What a paradox for us to long to be close or closer to the Lord when He has done everything to be as close as He can possibly be and restore us to Himself.


Is it possible Satan has sought to seduce us once again into believing He is not close, even after salvation?





24 thoughts on “No Longer Paradise

  1. I love the book of Hosea and such powerful truth when you shared, “And so God has done with each of us.” Thank you, Jesus for pursuing us! Beautiful image of His light and love.

  2. “Is it possible Satan has sought to seduce us once again into believing He is not close, even after salvation?” Pam, What a great summation and thought to remember!

    1. Thanks, Debbie! Dave Hickman’s book impacted me greatly and post-by-post (6 total in the series) truly reflects my own passion about the fresh glimpse of union with Christ. Blessings on you, sweet friend!

  3. These days, sadly, not many people believe in Satan. They might describe him, jokingly, as a man with horns, a tail, carrying a big fork and prodding people into hell. But they don’t actually believe. And Satan, is happy about that; it’s his best trick to make people not believe in him.

    God bless.

  4. Beyond thankful that God pursues me even when I’m prone to wander. My Tuesday morning Bible study group kicks off tomorrow with Hosea by Jennifer Rothschild. I’m looking forward to diving back into that book of the Bible and being reminded of God’s redeeming love.

    1. I feel that way as well. The book I read and reviewed last week that inspired this 6 part series has impacted and deepened my sense of all this even more than before, I think!

  5. Thank you for sharing your words of wisdom with us here at Tell me a Story. Not just any human had to die, but an innocent sinless human with holy blood derived from his heavenly father God. All other humans have tainted blood because our earthly fathers came from Adam. Jesus did not have an earthly father.

  6. satan’s continued relentless strategy is to keep us/me apart from the One who relentlessly pursued us and won. if i keep that strategy in mind, I can more easily resist it and fall into God’s open arms of rest and hope. amen? amen.

  7. Pam- I’m so glad God had the entire course of history already thought through. This post was timely for me. We just returned from the Creation Museum and learned so much about the beginning.
    I enjoyed your post!
    Your #MomentsofHope neighbor,

    1. Me too! We have never visited that museum, but it sounds like a great one! This post is the second in a five part series (in case you want to read others). Blessings on your day and thanks so much for this encouragement!

  8. Good morning, Pam … you have presented our story, the world’s story in a clear and convicting fashion. Praise God for sending His Son, Jesus! Where would we be without Him?

    Right back in the garden in the clutches of the evil one.

    1. So true, Linda! I talked about the garden in the first post of this series on Friday (Another Look at What Happened in the Garden). I hadn’t planned on writing a series, BUT you know that sometimes it just turns out that way. This will be a 5 (maybe 6) part series. Hope you had a great vacation!! Love you and glad to hear from you!

Leave a Reply