Two Gardens, Two Betrayals, Two Outcomes
Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it. And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” Genesis 2:15-17 (NKJV)
So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate. Genesis 3:6 (NKJV)
In Genesis, we read the heartbreaking account of the sin of Adam. Adam, whom the Lord created for fellowship and blessing, turned on Him and gave his allegiance to another. God had placed Adam and his wife in a garden and gave them everything but one tree. And rather than focusing on and being satisfied with everything he had, Adam allowed himself to be drawn away from God to desire the one and only thing he was told he could not have. Adam knew that by taking the fruit and eating it, he was betraying the Lord, his Maker and the One who loved him completely. Sadly, for the sake of one piece of fruit and the dangerous knowledge it held, Adam turned away from the Source of life and accepted the bondage of the devil. But God, Who truly does love mankind, had a plan to free man from the results of his betrayal. Fast forward about 4,000 years to another garden and another betrayal.
Then Jesus came with them to a place called Gethsemane, and said to the disciples, “Sit here while I go and pray over there.” Rise, let us be going…. See, My betrayer is at hand.” And while He was still speaking, behold, Judas, one of the twelve, with a great multitude with swords and clubs, came from the chief priests and elders of the people. Now His betrayer had given them a sign, saying, “Whomever I kiss, He is the One; seize Him.” Immediately he went up to Jesus and said, “Greetings, Rabbi!” and kissed Him. But Jesus said to him, “Friend, why have you come?”Then they came and laid hands on Jesus and took Him. Matthew 26:36, 46-50 (NKJV)
The plan was coming full circle. What began with a man betraying God in one garden was being remedied by a man betraying God in another garden. The first garden was the garden of Eden, which in Hebrew means pleasure. The second garden was Gethsemane, which means oil press. Man lost the original garden of pleasure, but God restored him by going through the oil press. It was the great pressure of knowing He was to be separated from God that caused Jesus to sweat drops of blood. The betrayal in the first garden cost mankind his life, but the betrayal in the second garden started the process by which one Man would die to provide eternal life for all mankind.
For the sin of this one man, Adam, caused death to rule over many. But even greater is God’s wonderful grace and his gift of righteousness, for all who receive it will live in triumph over sin and death through this one man, Jesus Christ. Yes, Adam’s one sin brings condemnation for everyone, but Christ’s one act of righteousness brings a right relationship with God and new life for everyone. Because one person disobeyed God, many became sinners. But because one other person obeyed God, many will be made righteous. Romans 5:17-19 (New Living Translation, NLT)
Mankind lost everything of value when he betrayed his heavenly Father in the Garden of Eden, and it is only fitting that a garden would be the setting for the betrayal that would give back to mankind everything that had been lost. God’s plan has always been to bring us back to fellowship with Him, so we can all walk with Him in the garden. Two gardens, two betrayals, but two very different outcomes.