Part 2.

The Books in Detail

We have now reached the point when we can without distraction take up each book and seek, as far as we are able, to gather its contents in some systematic way. We have already, once and again, anticipated this in our different surveys of the Pentateuch as a whole; but here our object is to seek with some measure of fulness to examine the contents of each book, and see their inherent character, as well as the suitability of their position in connection with what precedes and follows.

Chapter 1.


1. This book is divided into two parts; and indeed we might say the entire Bible falls into these divisions:
First. The origin of the universe, the earth and man (Gen. 1 and 2).
Second. Salvation through the woman's Seed, illustrated in the life of faith (Gen. 3 — 50).

The first division stands by itself, distinct from the entire word of God, we may say, except in its typical character and in the final fulfilment which we find in the closing part of Revelation, where the new heavens and the new earth take the place of that which had been marred by sin.

This first division sub-divides into two parts:
(1) The origin of all things as created by God (Gen. 1 — 2:3).
(2) Man in responsible relationship to God (Gen. 2:4-24).

Sub-division 1. (Gen. 1 — 2:3.)

The first sub-division has again what we can hardly call a new division, but something that should at least be noticed. The first verse evidently stands alone in its statement. It is not a part of the first day's work, but rather a statement of the abstract fact of the creation, in this way introductory to the entire word of God; and more particularly introductory to the seven days which follow. Bearing this in mind, we will make no further division of this portion, but speak of this introductory statement.

We are not told here of the method of divine creation. How could we enter into that method by which Omnipotence expresses itself? Science tells us of unlimited periods of time in which the earth has passed through various stages of progress. Faith has endeavored to link these with the periods suggested in the seven days. Of this we will speak a little later. Just at present, it is well to remember that God's first statement of creation has no modifications. He does not speak of time or methods, but simply of that omnipotent act by which all things were brought into existence.

The second verse need not be taken as describing the necessary condition of the universe after its creation, but a state into which it fell through causes more or less clearly understood. A passage in Isaiah 45:18 tells us that God did not create the earth "without form." This may refer to the ultimate outcome of the new creative work, which we see in the preparation of the earth as the abode of man. It does not necessarily mean that the earth did not pass through successive stages, thus gradually reaching its present condition. What is dwelt upon in the second verse, however, is the fact that after the original creation in which all things were brought into being, the earth was in a condition of formless chaos. It has been the custom, and we think rightly, to say that in this general statement we have abundance of room for the vast geological ages which a careful study of the earth calls for. We need not think of the first act of creation being futile as to the earth on one side; nor on the other, look for a primeval state of order which was later followed by chaos as the result of some untoward event.

Before going further, we must say a word as to the spiritual and typical meaning of this chapter. We speak for those who are prepared to receive the evident truth that we have many types throughout the word of God. Few indeed are those literalists, if any, who would deny that the ark is a type of salvation through Christ; the passover lamb, of shelter from judgment through the blood of the Lamb of God, and so on. Indeed, Scripture itself applies these and many others. We cannot here argue the question, which will come up in another connection for more direct treatment in the handbook on "The Types of Scripture." The interpretation must justify its own truth; and without further argument, but remembering what we have said of the definite purpose of God in this narrative, we will proceed to speak of the typical application of the seven days.

We have, first, of course, the literal meaning of the narrative, and then two or possibly three typical interpretations of it. The narrative itself is not, as we have already suggested, an amplification of the statement of the second verse, "The earth was without form and void," but shows how God laid hold of that waste condition of the earth and brought it up into its place in successive stages of divine work of creation. The study of nature and of Scripture shows us a close correspondence between the two, and we are not left to our own conjecture that the first creation is a type of the new "If any man be in Christ, it is new creation; old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new." "In Christ Jesus, neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creation." The literal work in the six days is a figure of that work of new creation in the soul, reaching on from its beginning to its completion and the rest of God. In addition to this, God's ways in the world dispensationally are clearly suggested and illustrated in the successive stages which lead us on to the sixth day. Further, we seem to have here in germ, the biographical history of the entire second part of the book of Genesis in which the cycle is again brought before us.

Lastly, we need not be surprised if we have also an outline of the previous geologic periods of the earth's history given in the work of these successive days. Truth is, we might say, in concentric circles, and this is justified and illustrated in these few verses at the opening of Genesis. We will therefore speak of these various meanings as we take up each day's work.

First Day — Light. Science no longer smiles at the thought of light before the sun. The latest discoveries in this department confirm the simple, non-scientific, but not unscientific statement of our chapter. Light is the result of some unascertained motive power, producing vibrations of inconceivable rapidity in the ether which pervades the entire universe. At present, this is connected with the combustion going on in the sun, and indeed with any source of light, great or small. Back of this, however, science demands a further explanation somewhat in accord with that just given. What this mysterious force is which thus puts into motion the waves of ether, it does not say. Faith however, with these precious words before it, has no difficulty. God said: "Let there be light, and there was light." It is Omnipotence that manifests itself in the all-pervasive effulgence that floods His universe with this manifestation of Himself. "God is light." How grand the thought, how glorious, how divine! Brooding over a shapeless wreck that welters in impenetrable darkness, God manifests Himself!

We touch so closely here to the great spiritual truth of new birth, that the transition is easily made. Over a wrecked life, lying hopeless in gloom that so far as its own efforts are concerned must be eternal, the Spirit of God in brooding love flashes forth the knowledge of the presence of God Himself: "God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts." The light here shows nothing but itself in which God can find pleasure: "God saw the light that it was good." He can only divide it from all that is not light, calling the one "day" and the other "night."

In the history of the work of God in the soul, this illumination is often accompanied and indeed marked by the deepest sense of utter sinfulness. God's presence manifests that as nothing else would. There is, however, coupled with this sense of sin, the light of what God's grace is, which is prophetic of the work which that grace is going to accomplish in a creation upon which He has now laid His hand. Thus the literal and the spiritual significance of this first day's work is clearly established.

Dispensationally, it suggests that time when, after sin had brought ruin into the world, we have the light of God's promise shining over the troubled scene of the earth's history from Adam to Noah, when the earth was uncontrolled by human authority, and yet faith had the light of God's promise to guide it ever forward to the good things that were yet to come. Indeed, how beautiful it is to see in this the first of God's new creation, the pledge of its final consummation. The light of the heavenly city itself is seen in this its first introduction here. It is the pledge of that glorious day when there shall be no night there, when God who is light shall be all in all. This is ever the mark of a divine work. It carries within it the promise and the potentiality of the consummation. When once this is grasped, the feebleness and foolishness of the view that God's work can fail, that His people must exert themselves or be "cast as rubbish to the void," is seen. As well might we expect, after the introduction of light on the first day, to find all falling into darkness and ruin. True, the night does come again for a little season, but the day follows, and indeed it is that which is last, for "the evening and the morning were the first day." So, when we reach the seventh day there is no evening. All ends in eternal light.

No doubt this first day suggests the earliest geologic age — the Azoic, in which nothing was manifested except the light.

In the biographies following, we also have, evidently, the promise as connected with Adam given to our first parents before they were banished from Eden. Thus it was not into darkness they were banished, but with the light of a promise which would shine more and more unto the perfect day.

Second Day — The Firmament, or expanse, is here seen, which spreads between the earth-heavens and the waters beneath. As yet, nothing is upon the surface of the world except the waters covering all. God makes a division now between these waters and the vapors above. There is marked distinction between them. The waters upon the earth are the salt, bitter waters of the ocean; while those above, though drawn from the ocean, are perfectly fresh. It is beautiful to see how these waters in vast and inconceivable volume are suspended in those "balancing clouds" which lift them above the earth and yet hold them in connection with it, ever ready to pour down in beneficent rain the treasures which they hold. Science here again has ceased to sneer at the wondrous exactness and beauty of all this. It is a true picture of what the expanse of the atmosphere is, a separation between the waters on the earth and in the heavens, not a hard and fast line; indeed, one that can be filled, it may be, with vapor, and yet which in general arches itself above us, making a true separation, as Scripture here describes it.

The spiritual meaning of this is not difficult to ascertain. We saw in the first day the light manifesting an ocean of chaotic ruin. In this second day, we have manifested the separation that exists between the ruin of the fallen nature and the new life which is from God. "That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit." Here we have the two natures which are in the believer. The fallen one, dead, unproductive, at enmity with God; but lifted up, distinct from this, and yet in connection with it we have a new life which has, we might say, been constructed through divine alchemy from the world, lifted up above it now to control and pour out its beneficence upon the new man, making him fruitful. Fruitfulness is not yet apparent, but God sees the result of His work. If this truth is seen, difficulties otherwise inexplicable are solved. The extravagant claims of perfectionism are seen both to be impossible and unnecessary; while the undoubted presence of evil still remaining in the child of God is fully accounted for. The old nature is not eliminated. It is, however, not that which characterizes the new-born soul.

Further, in their position above the earth, the waters would suggest the supremacy of the Spirit in the life. "Therefore, brethren, we are debtors not to the flesh to live after the flesh." "Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lusts of the flesh."

Dispensationally, this second day points to the time when God made a separation between the lawless elements of a fallen humanity and those principles of control which one day are to govern all. It was effected, we might say, literally out of the waters of the flood; for, under Noah, we have this elevation of divinely given authority in government over the lawlessness of the human family; and from the time of Noah to the present, there have always been the powers that be, ordained of God, which govern more or less distinctly; and though, alas, with constant admixture of human tyranny and unrighteousness, they yet are evidently beneficent and distinct from the raging waves of the sea, which again and again Scripture speaks of as the lawlessness of unrestrained selfwill. This is the dispensational application of the second day.

In the subsequent part of the book of Genesis, it seems to refer more particularly to the life, for instance, of Seth and his family, who are distinct from the descendants of Cain. In Cain, we have the waters beneath, lawless, unrestrained, selfwilled, reaching up indeed to the giants, and fathering all kinds of inventions that make life tolerable and enjoyable, while ever away from God. In the family of Seth, we have that spiritual seed lifted up above all this, reaching its climax in Enoch who "walked with God" and who passed into the heavens, for which his new nature had already fitted him.

The geologic period suggested by the second day is doubtless that condition of the earth when its heavily charged vapors subsided more into the water, and a true atmosphere, not exactly as we know it now, but quite similar, was established, in which the vast waters above the world were separated from those beneath. This touches so closely on the literal narrative, that there can be no difficulty in understanding it.

Third Day — The Earth. Here at last, the dry land emerges from the sea. The waters are gathered in one place, forming indeed by far the larger part of the surface of the world, and yet giving place to the dry land, which soon begins to smile with its coat of many colors in grass and flower and fruitful plant and tree.

There are thus two parts to the work of this day, both of which are pronounced "good." This gathering of the waters into their own place marks the great epoch of the earth's history in which we still are. With the exception of the flood, when all was temporarily submerged, the dry land has ever appeared, and, as we have already seen in connection with the waters above the firmament, given character to the surface of the earth. It will be noticed that God's work from the beginning was of a separative character. Light was separated from darkness the waters above the heavens from those beneath, and here again the dry land is separated from the engulfing waves, which prevented its manife station.

Applying all this to the history of the new creative work, the meaning is beautiful and clear. God's gracious work is of this separative character. The light of life is separated from the surrounding death. The new nature is distinct from the old, and this new life is now to manifest itself in the earth as well as above it in a way that shows its power. Thus the "dry land" appears.

It will be noticed that this takes place on the third day. "Three," the number of manifestation, of divine fulness, and thus of resurrection, suggests the power of the new life manifested as a true resurrection. It is in connection with this that the fruits of the new life make their appearance. And how beautiful are these fruits! If the earth would be unsightly without its grass and herb, its tree with blossom and fruit, how desolate too would appear a life in which, while it was the true work of God, there was no fruit for His eye to rest upon! Indeed, this would be impossible, and so we find that the fruit is closely connected with the emergence of the dry land.

Space will not permit more than this glimpse at the fair field of the new creation. May it be ours to witness more and more the reality of that life which now is manifested: "Being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life."

Dispensationally, the third day speaks of the emergence of a nation from the surrounding heathenism which supervened so soon after the flood, and which took its place definitely as such when Israel entered into the land. This marks an epoch in God's dealings with the world. Noah and his successors give us the second great period of human government, but from Abraham on, and as we have said more particularly in the Jewish nation in the land, we have a distinct separation between the earthly people of God and the surrounding nations. This people was formed to bear fruit for Himself. God brought a vine out of Egypt and planted it in a fruitful hill. He looked that it should bring forth grapes. This was His purpose. We see indeed the fruit in the life of every man of faith from Abraham on to Samuel, David, and the prophets, with countless others who were "the quiet in the land," and yet who presented many a modest flower or luscious fruit to the eye of God. Alas, the nation as a whole brought forth wild grapes; yet the purposes of God were established and manifested, as was just said, in the life of individual faith. Thus the third day, dispensationally, speaks of the time from Abraham to the coming of Christ.

In the biographies of the book of Genesis, we can scarcely fail to see that Noah, emerging with his family from the flood, would speak of this period when the dry land appeared. God establishes a definite testimony upon the earth which, as in the case of Abraham, manifests itself in fruitfulness of life. It has been pointed out elsewhere (see notes in Numerical Bible, Introductory to Genesis), that in this connection, Abraham is linked both with the second part of the third day, as already suggested, and with the fourth, to which we are now coming. This will be noticed as we proceed further. It is simply to be remarked that we thus have for the remainder of the book of Genesis, two sets of divisions; one which makes Abraham a third, and the other, a fourth. This will also give his successors a twofold position, in each of which there is a distinct and appropriate meaning.

In the geologic history of the earth, we have now reached the place where its various strata begin to take permanent place. In the rising of the dry land from the waters, we may have the first appearance of those earliest continental areas as seen in the Laurentian rocks. Connected with these, too, is that character of life which is seen in the earliests forms of algae and other kinds of vegetable life. The periods which are linked with this will give us in ever-increasing measure the establishment of vegetable life upon the earth during the various ages which followed, more particularly the carboniferous, in which vegetation seems to have reached a climax of greatness, thus serving the twofold purpose of absorbing the vast, limitless amount of carbonic acid gas which would have rendered the atmosphere unfit for animal use, and at the same time laying up in store those great seams of coal which were a prophecy of the man that was to come.

Fourth Day — The Heavens. The sun is now seen in its place in relation to the earth; the moon as well. Here again, science adds its assent, which faith had not needed, to the order which suggests that the sun as we know it now had not previously its established and definite place and purpose. Without going too deeply into astronomic theories, it is admitted by scientists that the earth, as the smaller body, might well have taken its form prior to the shrinking of the inconceivably great mass which now forms the sun into that definite body. Be this as it may, there is no question that the narrative, while couched in the language of every-day speech, is strictly accurate. The sun, as we know it now, the great light which rules the day, came into this place on the fourth day.

Spiritually, we have here that which gives definiteness, character, and power to the whole life of the new man. From the beginning, God saw all blessings centred in Christ; but until after He had, not merely appeared upon the earth, but had accomplished by the sacrifice of Himself the great work of redemption, and taken His place in the heavens as riser, and glorified, His preeminent position was not seen. It is Christ, the risen man at God's right hand the One who has sent down the Holy Spirit as His representative and agent upon earth, who is the power of that new life by which we now live to God. "If ye be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God." He is the Sun who illumines our day. We have been delivered from the power of darkness and translated into the kingdom of God's dear Son. He it is also who controls and orders all things; and, as we know, the moon shines with but a reflected light, so the Lord's people as lights in the world shine by virtue of that light which falls upon them from Christ in glory. The stars show the heavens in their complete order.

In the soul's spiritual history, all this is most important. We are not merely to be fruitful upon the earth, but be marked as a heavenly people.

Dispensationally, we need hardly say, the epoch which follows after Israel's national history is characterized by the Sun in the heavens. It is Christ in glory who shines upon this earth, making the present or Church period the most remarkable in the world's history. This epoch extends from Pentecost on to the coming of the Lord; it is the fourth stage in God's ways with the world. The Church is seen here as the moon, in one sense, reflecting the light of her absent Lord. It is not a contradictory, though somewhat different thought, to speak of the moon as Israel, and so we find that in their history God made special provision for the blowing of the trumpets on the new moon. The light of the moon wanes as it turns away from the sun, so that at the close of each lunar month there is a period of darkness. Then the new moon reappears, a type of Israel's shining again, and this is signalized by faith's recognition of it. The Psalms speak of this, the blowing of the trumpet on the new moon. The longing cry of faith asks Him who is the Sun for Israel to begin this new period: "Turn us again, O God, and cause Thy face to shine, and we shall be saved." "There be many that say, Who will show us any good? Lord, lift Thou up the light of Thy countenance upon us."

The present or Church period is the time of Israel's darkness. "Blindness in part is happened to Israel," and the vessel of testimony, the lesser light that rules the night of this present period, is not Israel, but the Church.

As to the application to the geologic history of the world, we have evidently now reached the time when the full effects of the shining of the sun introduces those periods when conditions of life began to be similar to the present, the atmosphere purified, and therefore vegetable growth becoming more and more conformed to what we know it at present.

Fifth Day — The Waters. The waters now teem with life, and birds fly in the air. Here again science adds its confirmation, grudgingly enough, but it could not be withheld. The order is evidently the correct one. How beautifully, too, is seen the action of God's goodness in all this! He first creates an environment in which it is possible for His creatures to exist. For instance, plant life requires the dry land upon which to be established. That, therefore, is first brought up out of the waters. Animals need vegetable food, and this is first supplied in abundance before these creatures are brought into being. God's whole work, as we have already remarked, is thus ever prophetic of the good things to come.

How blessed it is to be a part even of His material creation, and to find that He never introduces us into a sphere which He has not first prepared for us. It is thus even that the apostle speaks of the good works of the believer. We are "created in Christ Jesus unto good works which God hath before ordained (prepared) that we should walk in them." They are made ready to our hand, rather than the result of any effort of our own.

Science, as we were saying, declares that animal life in the waters began before that upon land. The earliest forms of animal life are aquatic, and to this day the waters are the home of by far the larger part, numerically, of all forms of life. The waters still literally swarm with life. The birds also are the first in order of the warm-blooded vertebrates, and those are appropriately in the fifth day.

Spiritually, the sea, as we have already found, speaks of that restless, fallen nature which is in man, and of the world too in which we are, which is like the troubled sea. It is through exercise in connection with the surging and struggling of the old nature that the child of God produces fruit for Him. The tribulations through which he passes in the world, the opposition of evil, the being in the strange element where all is contrary to a life of faith, is the environment in which certain characteristics of the divine life are manifested. "Tribulation worketh patience; and patience, experience." It is true in the history of every child of God that the time when he has seemed to be most tried, are the occasions for a special and higher character of spiritual growth than he had heretofore manifested. Just as animal life is an advance upon vegetable, the latter requiring a fixed and quiet abode, while the former flourishes under more adverse circumstances, so the spiritual life is developed in what we may call the more manly virtues, by the very oppositions through which we are called to pass.

Dispensationally, the period which will succeed that of the Church upon the earth is that brief but troublous time which forms so large a part of the narrative of the book of Revelation. It is the time of the Great Tribulation, when the sea and the waves thereof are roaring, and when all seems ready to engulf any testimony for the truth of God. It is out of this fearful time of trouble that the faith of Israel, in the feeble remnant which turns in penitence to God, will reach a definiteness and energy which perhaps were not known even in Israel's palmiest days. In those days the men of faith frequently were, from their very position, in more or less authority over the earth-power; but during the last week of Daniel, "the time of Jacob's trouble," there will be fearful oppression, a time of tribulation such as has not been since the world was, "no, nor ever shall be;" and yet, out of this surging opposition of evil will arise that poor and afflicted people who shall be marked by the faithfulness, for instance, of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego in the fiery furnace, and who, though many of them shall be put to death, love not their lives unto the death, and therefore shall receive a better resurrection. Out of this period of turmoil will arise a spiritual life in Israel such as they never had before, a life which in the birds flying in the open firmament of heaven suggests a liberty and a power that augur well for the glories of the succeeding dispensation.

As we have said before, this is both a fourth and a fifth division. Abraham, as we saw, is a third, along with Noah, suggesting the resurrection side of things. He is also a fourth, as showing us the walk of faith upon the earth. He is the true pilgrim, who embodies in himself the characteristics of both the numbers three and four. In his life, he is linked with the resurrection. In his walk, he is linked with the earth.

In this way Isaac is also a fourth and a fifth. In the lowliness and subjection of his life, we are reminded of the place of dependence, as well also of his being a type of Christ risen, the true Sun in the heaven. As a fifth division in the book, it shows us the fruitfulness that comes from his typical death and resurrection. His union with Rebecca follows his sacrifice.

Jacob, in like manner, is a fifth and a sixth, with characteristics of both numbers; the fifth suggesting the exercise and tribulations through which he passed, and the sixth, the victory which God gave him and the deliverance out of all his trouble. His history emphasizes for us the discipline through which the people of God are caused to pass; a discipline which produces in them the peaceable fruits of righteousness. So we find with Jacob personally. It is significant that the tribulation itself is called "the time of Jacob's trouble;" and, as in the case of Israel, it can also be added: "He shall be saved out of it."

The geologic periods are now those of the Cenozoic, the earlier Eocene and more recent forms of animal life, the Pliocene, in which life approaches more and more to its present conditions. It is needless to say that during this period, all forms of marine life are in abundantly full evidence.

The Sixth Day — The Earth Peopled. On this, the last day of the Divine labor, the scene is transferred from the sea to the dry land, and beasts of every kind are brought forth from the earth. Details are not given. There are however, here as everywhere else, suggestive intimations which can be followed out by reverent study. It will be noticed that each creature is "after his kind," as in the previous days plant and marine animals were similarly created. This establishes the fixity of species. Of course, what these species were is not definitely declared, nor the general limits within which variety might be subsequently developed. As a matter of fact, in many animal species this variety is so great as to be scarcely believable, did we not have the clearest evidence for it. This may give us a hint that these varieties would include many apparently different species. One thing, however, is certain, that "after his kind" puts its stamp of individuality upon each class of plant and animal life. Evolution, therefore, meets with no encouragement from this Scripture, though as we have just said, we must be careful in any reaction from the extreme of infidel theory not to fall into the opposite one of making endless classes. A common unity underlies all animal creation. There are special adaptations in each class for work to be done. Just as distinctly, however, are the classes separated one from the other by barriers which cannot be transgressed.*

{*That varieties in the same species may have been greatly developed through circumstances and adaptations, we see in the human families having one common origin in Adam and Eve.}

It will be noted that the work of the sixth day is also divided into two parts, as was that of the third, and the fifth as well, where fish in the sea and fowl in the air are not as closely connected together as our ordinary text would lead us to think. It should rather read: "Let fowl fly above the earth, in the open firmament of heaven." The second part of the sixth day is devoted to the creation of man; and here, for the first time, we have those expressions of the Divine counsel which give us glimpses into the wondrous depth of the ineffable relationships of the persons of the Godhead.

It may be as well just here to remind the reader that throughout the entire first chapter, as indeed throughout all Old Testament Scripture, the name "Elohim" translated "God" is plural, while the verb of which it is the subject is singular. This indicates plurality of Persons, but one God. Here we have the same thought of plurality of Persons taking counsel together. Other scriptures show us that the active agent in creation was The Word" (John 1:1-3) — the Son, by whom and for whom all things were created. This, of course, does not mean that He was alone in the work, but it was through Him that the full results of the divine counsel were carried out. The Spirit too was unquestionably present, as we read in the second verse of our chapter. It seems suggestive, as we are reminded constantly throughout this chapter, that the work of creation was by the word of God. Thirty-one times is the expression repeated "and God said." Thus we have not merely the thought of a plurality of divine Persons, but of the Trinity itself — Father, Son and Spirit.

There is an evident pause ere man is introduced into the scene. Of no other creature do we find anything like such language as is here used, although, as we know, he has an animal existence in common with other creatures, and can, as to his material organism, be classified with the rest. There is, however, that which so absolutely differentiates him from the lower orders of animal creation, that he stands absolutely and impassably alone.

"Let Us make man, in Our image, after Our likeness." This "image" constitutes man the representative of God upon the earth, and the "likeness" shows, as the apostle says, quoting from the heathen poet: "We are also His offspring" — a likeness of moral and mental faculties which give man the capacity to know God and to enjoy Him.

Alas, we are soon confronted with the awful ruin which sin has brought in, and which has stamped ignorance of God upon the very being who was created in His likeness. We know also that man at his best estate is altogether vanity, and that being in honor and understanding not, he is "like the beasts that perish;" for, when he knew God, he "glorified Him not as God," and thus has fallen lower than the brute creation over which he was appointed as head.

All this, however, would come in later and is aside from the main point here, which is that man by his intellectual, moral and spiritual constitution, is in the image and likeness of God, as in the New Testament he is declared to be "the image and glory of God." "Glory," as we know, is manifested excellence. How solemn and amazing is the thought that man was created to be the display, in creature measure, of the excellence and the glory of God. At once, the mind leaps forward to the Second Man in whom this display in its perfection exists, One who was and is "the image of the invisible God," and who, coming into the creation which His own power had brought into being, takes His place as Head over it, with dominion over all things. This reminds us again that it is Christ who is ever before the mind of God, and in whom alone His counsels can be fulfilled; of whom alone, in perfection, all that is here said of the supremacy of man is true.

But space does not permit us to enter here into the full discussion of this most attractive and important department of divine truth; we may say, of that which is at the head of it all. It must suffice us to remember that the creation of man thus declares his spirituality, uniqueness and supremacy. Other truths are suggested here which will come up when we speak of the details of the creation as brought out in the next chapter. Male and female remind us of the link between man and other creatures, and suggest that establishment of the human family upon the earth which is in itself a shadow of the blessed companionships in the Divine family and a foreshadow of those companionships in grace which God has established both in heaven and upon earth.

Man, then, is the crowning work of God, and is established over the fair creation which divine wisdom and skill have prepared for his enjoyment.

Passing to the spiritual application of all this in the history of the soul, as has already been said, the mind leaps forward to that day when the Second Man shall be displayed in all His glory, Head and Lord over all things; and associated with Him is a redeemed company which no man can number of those who have been washed in His precious blood and made meet by new creation to be the partner of His glory in His headship over all things: "And gave Him to be Head over all things to the Church, which is His body, the fulness (or complement) of Him that filleth all in all."

Here, then, is the ideal of manhood in the image and likeness of God, an ideal reached alone in Christ, with whom alone His Church could rightly share the place which never could be held by any other than the Firstborn. This already suggests the goal toward which all things tend.

Individually, in the soul's progress, it speaks of that blessed time, in relation to each believer, as expressed by the apostle: "Forgetting the things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark (or goal) for the prize of the calling on high of God in Christ Jesus." No development of character, even of the new man, no fruitfulness of life here, can ever be mistaken for "the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ" which is the consummation of all God's thoughts and purposes; thus, most suggestively, the culmination of highest individual blessing merges in the corporate, where each individual will not only be perfectly blessed, but be in absolutely harmonious relationship with the whole family of the redeemed.

Dispensationally, the sixth day points forward to the repeopling of the world with the nations who shall be brought through the period of trial which shall try all them that dwell upon the earth, spoken of in the fifth day. It is suggestive, thus, of the order and peace of the millennium. Significantly, it is divided into two parts, as giving us the twofold thought of a ransomed earth, which is also under the headship of the Second Man with His bride. As we have it in the last of Revelation, the bride city, the Lamb's wife, is seen in association with Himself in connection with dominion over the earth. Thus the promise is fulfilled to the overcomer, that he shall with Christ sit down upon His throne and rule the nations.

Coming to the division of the book of Genesis, the life of Jacob, as has already been said, is both a fifth and sixth; the fifth recalling his tribulation, and the sixth the victory which God gives him. His closing days are peaceful, and we see him basking in the honors heaped upon his beloved son Joseph, who thus comes before us fittingly as the sixth, a type of the Second Man, who with His Gentile bride, is placed in dominion over the earth; typical of which, he has been the saviour through the time of "Jacob's trouble," the period of the famine.

As is common in the Scriptures, the lights blend together, and we pass from the exercises of Jacob into the even deeper ones of Joseph, out of which he was brought and placed upon the throne. Here all is in beautiful accord.

Little need be said as to the sixth geological period. We are at last brought into the Pleistocene age and modern condition of things which has gone on undisturbed, save possibly by a glacial submergence, and an evident cataclysm of which there are abundant evidences, showing that a flood came upon the earth after man was established on it.

The Seventh Day. We have thus reached the end of the works of God. "In six days, the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath Day, and hallowed it." After labor comes rest. We may say, in the language of man, that God has rested from His works since their completion. He has no longer been putting forth the labor which is suggested in the work of creation. This sets aside the thought entertained by some, of subsequent creatorial acts. Physically speaking, we have been living in the Sabbath of God, so far as His cessation from creative labor is concerned.

Of course this is the lowest view of rest — a view which Scripture does not much dwell upon; for as our Lord said, "My Father worketh hitherto and I work," which shows that there was still need that His Sabbath rest should be disturbed. We know what brought in this disturbance, and what has started a fresh course of divine labor of a far more toilsome character than the bringing of worlds and creatures into existence. "There remaineth, therefore, a rest to the people of God" — a rest which they can share only with Himself. This rest yet waits for its accomplishment, when all things shall have been subjected, and when at last the Son Himself shall deliver up all things unto God, even the Father, and God shall be all in all; when the the tabernacle of God shall be with men and "He will dwell with them;" when there shall be a new heaven and new earth "wherein dwelleth righteousness" — an infinite advance upon even that reign of righteousness which shall be during the millennium.

Nothing more will then remain to be done. All the purposes of God will have been fulfilled; blessing will have been established, not upon the unstable foundation of the fallible first man, but upon the eternal righteousness and accomplished work in redemption of the Second Man. He is also the last Adam, the head of the redeemed human family, who are the "many sons" brought to glory with Himself.

The Sabbath, thus, is a type of the eternal state. Fittingly, therefore, all lines converge here. The spiritual history of the individual here reaches the same goal as the dispensational destiny of the whole creation, and the very "new heavens and new earth" themselves speak of the bringing in of a new geologic order, which shall not witness of the past throes and convulsions of this poor earth, but rather of a scene of bliss, when the creation itself "shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption" and brought "into the liberty of the glory of the children of God;" when the vast universe itself shall be the fitting expression and display of the mind of God.; and, even as now the body of man is not only the vehicle, but in a certain sense the expression of his personality, so the whole universe shall be both the vehicle of the display, and itself in a very real way the manifestation of the glory of the Second Man and His redeemed people. For this rest we wait — in divine company with the Father who still looks out upon a seething mass of evil, out of which is emerging, little by little, that which alone can abide, all the rest of which must be forever banished from His presence; —

In company with the Son, who, while now receiving foretastes of the glories of His redeeming work in the salvation of individuals, still waits for that Day when "He shall see of the travail of His soul and be satisfied" in fulness, and when that joy which was set before Him shall be fully entered into, the joy of bringing back and laying at the feet of the Father a once revolted but now restored creation, never, never again to rise against infinite goodness, love and blessing; —

In company with the Spirit, who from the beginning has been brooding over ruined nature and quickening souls; who has been leading on and on into the ever-brightening light of the coming Day; who is at present dwelling in each believer and also forming the Church, the body of Christ, linking it with Himself in heaven; and dwelling in the temple, the house of God, which is growing up into a completed building, spite of all the failure and ruin which for the time being has come in through the faithlessness of man; but who still yearns and longs for the coming of the Bridegroom — "the Spirit and the Bride say come;" who will find His rest not even in the millennial period when "the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the the Lord, as the waters cover the sea," but who will at last, with the Father and the Son, enjoy the bliss which His own grace has made possible — the rest of God, in the new heavens and the new earth.

In this divine companionship we wait. Surely, our home, our rest can be nowhere else than there, with the family of God. As we think of this, with all the longing implanted in the heart by the Spirit of God for such a rest, we cannot linger here, nor let the fairest scenes of earth deceive us for a moment, even though a millennium lay before us. We still hear a Voice saying, "Arise and depart, for this is not your rest."

Sub-division 2. (Gen. 2:4-25.)

We have necessarily somewhat anticipated what belongs to the present sub-division of our subject, which we have entitled, "Man in responsible relation to God;" nor can we dwell upon the details before us as much as we have in our rapid glance at the seven days. Several salient features, however, must be noticed.

First — The Name of God. "Jehovah-Elohim," translated "the LORD God," has been taken by unbelief, as we know, to indicate a difference of authorship. It seems strange that sensible men should not have thought of a far more obvious explanation — that here we have a different subject. We can think of a person in two or more different connections. As an official performing public duties, he would be designated, for instance, as a judge; while, as the head of a family, his acts in the home would necessarily not be spoken of as those of a judge, but of a father. Thus, we would not be in the least surprised to read in the biography of some noted jurist, "The judge decided that such evidence was not admissible," and on a succeeding page, when his son asks some favor of his father, to find the same person spoken of as his father. This simply illustrates that of which Scripture is full, a delicate accuracy in the use of the divine titles. It is so with the names and offices of our Lord Jesus, which are never used in a haphazard, careless way.*

{*The reader might read with profit the little book, "Divine Unfoldings."}

What then is suggested by this twofold name, "Jehovah-Elohim?" "Elohim" links with what has gone before, and shows us that He who is now spoken of as "Jehovah" is none other than the "Elohim" of the preceding narrative. This establishes a continuity which prevents all heathen thought of a multiplicity of deities with diverse and sometimes contradictory interests.

"Jehovah" is full of the deepest and tenderest suggestions. Etymologically, it means "The One who Exists," perhaps in the simplest way in which it could be expressed, declaring the eternity of God, in contrast with His entire creation, sentient and inanimate, which is finite. It is the self-existent One, the Absolute, who Himself is the Cause, Author and End of all things; the "Alpha and Omega," "the First and the Last," by whom and for whom are all things — the One who "is, and was, and is to come;" the One of whom the Psalmist says, "From everlasting to everlasting, Thou art God." There is, however, in this name "Jehovah" an etymological suggestion of futurity hinted at by the presence of the first letter Yodh, the New Testament "jot" of Matthew 5. It might be rendered "The One who will be," as though suggesting a revelation of Himself in far fuller measure than was enjoyed when first His name was declared. Indeed, God reminded Moses that the revelation of Himself as "Jehovah," in the significance of this name, was something new.

To Abraham, who knew the literal name "Jehovah," as doubtless his predecessors did, God was known rather as El-shaddai, "God Almighty," His omnipotent power, wisdom, etc. , being suggested; but to Moses, was made known the true, inward significance of the name "Jehovah" as the God of covenant relationship, the eternal and unfailing One who would surely bring to pass all His promises. Thus, He was revealed not exactly "by" His name "Jehovah," but according to that name. This encourages us to expect a still further revelation of the significance of that title. We are not surprised, therefore, to find that in "Immanuel" (God with us), His name is declared to be "Jesus" (Jehovah the Saviour). Here at last is the full shining forth of that name which God, in the typical salvation of Israel out of Egypt, made known to Moses in part; as He says, His back parts seen, but now to us revealed in all the effulgence of the glory of the moral character of His beloved Son, and in all the wonder of the grace of that redemption which He has wrought for us by His cross. Thus the pledge suggested in the sign of the future is made good, and in Jesus, "Jehovah the Saviour," we have the full thought of the covenant of God, to whom we have been brought into relationship.

Thus we may well say that the very first mention of "Jehovah-Elohim" has upon it the mark of futurity, telling us that all the depths of that name would not be known until "God was manifest in the flesh."

Second — "Generations, Toledhoth." In Gen. 2:4, we have for the first time this characteristic word, which introduces ten more or less clearly marked divisions of the entire book of Genesis. Indeed, these have been taken to indicate certain original documents which go to make up the book, and they are said to show that Moses simply edited these documents, incorporating them into the one book. We have already spoken sufficiently upon this point. We do not believe, indeed, that they necessarily at all indicate separate documents, but rather, as has already been suggested, separate topics.*

{*The passages are Gen. 2:4; Gen. 5:1; Gen. 6:9; Gen. 10:1; Gen. 11:10; Gen. 11:27; Gen. 25:12; Gen. 25:19; Gen. 36:1; Gen. 37:2.}

These "generations" speak of certain moral characteristics of the portion they introduce. The word "generation," from the root "Yaladh," meaning "to bring forth," suggests the natural order and relationship and community of character in what is being described. Thus, the first use of the word in the verse we are considering has been taken to look both backward and forward, unlike its use in any subsequent passage, where it has always been placed at the head of the passage introduced. Here it has been thought to refer to the work of the six days as well as to that which follows, the establishing of man in moral relationship to God. We are not disposed to deny this application; we merely suggest that it is not absolutely necessary; but that we may have in the six days' work that which stands out by itself, and then in the succeeding section we begin that which continues throughout the entire book, the narration of events in their moral order and significance. This we think is rather more in accord with the truth and subsequent use of the expression.

"Generations" then suggests nature, character, and the responsibility that is associated with these. "The generations of the heavens and of the earth" suggests their relationship to divine order and their evident prophetic connection with man, who had not yet been created. This indeed is what immediately follows. Plant life, as has already been said, which would fit the earth for the abode of man when he was brought into it, is spoken of in just this anticipative way. God prepared all things for the future head and master of creation. Then in verse seven, in simple but most dignified manner, we have certain details of the creation of man. He is formed of the dust of the earth, thus linking him, as we have said, with material creation. It does not exactly say, let it be noted, that man's body was formed of the dust of the earth. His body is a part of himself and cannot be separated from his individuality. This suggests at once the permanence, in some form, of the human body; a permanence which is fully established for His people in blessing by the resurrection of Him who has become the firstfruits of them that slept.

As the formation of man's body links him with material creation, so the breathing into his nostrils the breath of life links him directly with God. He is thus the offspring of God. This inbreathing surely cannot mean of the mere bodily life which man has in common with the beasts. It suggests those mental and moral faculties with which he has been endowed, of knowledge, will and affection, which link him in nature with God. This is a direct, definite act. Many questions might detain us here, the answers to some of which we certainly could not give. It is not amiss, however, to ask these, if in a reverent spirit.

What, for instance, we may ask, exactly corresponds to this inbreathing into the nostrils of Adam, in the case of every person who is born into the world? How is his individuality, personality, imparted to him? In one sense we may say by heredity, which is perfectly true. In another, we must guard against the mere thought of multiplication of the species apart from divine act. While the inbreathing is only spoken of in connection with the first man, yet is there not in connection with each individual that is born into the world something that answers to this unique individuality, this personality stamped upon each human soul? Solemn, in one sense dreadful, that God Himself imparts to every responsible being that which is the pledge and the necessity for an eternal existence of joy or woe unutterable, according to the way he meets the thought of God in grace.

Third — The Garden of Eden. The whole universe, in one sense, is the garden which the Lord has planted; no doubt, in future ages to be enjoyed in the company of the Second Man as He looks out upon that goodly heritage, "the new heavens and the new earth," which has been given Him to share with His ransomed people, in headship over all things.

In another sense, the whole earth is the garden of the Lord, and during the millennial age it will doubtless blossom as the rose, and be a scene where the Lord God can walk and enjoy communion with His beloved people.

The literal Garden of Eden was, however, a certain portion of the earth prepared especially for the abode of our first parents. Just as the present geologic state of the earth is marked off in separation from all those preceding stages when the earth indeed flourished in all the luxuriance of vegetable and animal life, and yet was manifestly unfit to be the abode of man; so too the present earth, stretching out in its vast extent from pole to pole, was too wide, and we may say, uncultivated an area for the untried human family. What thoughtful tenderness, what goodness and love unite with divine skill, as suggested by the word "planted!" Here we have the first husbandman, none other than the living God Himself, in tender solicitude for His offspring, man His creature, preparing an abode where all that was needed and pleasant for food and for enjoyment would be made ready to his hand.

Our attention is then directed to the two trees which were there the tree of life, of which little is spoken, for the very significant reason that it was so soon to be forfeited, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil. This last is distinctly spoken of, and it is just here that the cardinal point is reached. Is man to be simply a child of larger growth, unthinking, irresponsible, without that which will fit him to enjoy communion with God? If so, he cannot be the highest thought or purpose in the Divine mind; just as no father, however much his heart is delighted with his infant child, would rest satisfied with his remaining in infancy. That which is a joy and a delight in the early days of the little one, becomes a sorrow and burden if as the days go on it is seen that its intelligence is limited, its affections similar to those of a domestic animal, and its powers so cramped that it will never, with the flight of years, be anything but an infant. Pathetic indeed are those who thus remain in infancy; a dwarfed spiritual condition, of which the apostle speaks in connection with the Corinthians, who were failing to go on in the enjoyment of their privileges and in meeting their responsibilities, and whom, therefore, he characterizes as babes and carnal, whom he must thus feed with the milk suited only for infants, and not with the food which is the proper enjoyment of the matured man. "Every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe." Likewise we may well say, had man been without the responsibilities that flow from a necessary free agency, he would have been a perpetual dwarf, utterly incapable of entering into the thoughts of God, or of answering to that yearning of the Divine heart for companionship with creatures who were capable of entering into His desires, purposes and and affections.

Thus the tree of knowledge of good and evil was no arbitrary or cruel test applied to an unsuspecting, guileless being. It was absolutely essential, if man was to be man in any true sense of the word. He was to be bound to God, not by the rigid links of a blind necessity over which he had no control and to which he could not say aught. He must be left to the exercise of the freedom of a will which separates him from the beasts about him. These indeed may and do act in accordance with the instincts implanted within them, may devour flesh or feed upon the herb according to their natural endowment, but they are irresponsible because devoid of that individuality and freedom of will which distinguishes man from them for, as a matter of fact, it is not merely reason which distinguishes man from the lower animals, but that moral endowment which enables him to choose, which makes him to a certain degree the master of his surroundings and of his future.

Solemn and dreadful thoughts cluster here. We may easily, especially under the leadership of "the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience," ask why God has brought such creatures into being, why He has endowed man with free agency, knowing that he would abuse it and forfeit the blessing connected with it? Our one and all-sufficient answer is, "Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?" "Hath the clay power to say to the potter, Why hast thou made me thus?" Intelligent faith is content to bow and accept absolutely what God has done as perfection. Nay, more; as we have already suggested, we can even now understand the necessity of man being what he is. We can thank God for the creation of beings whose destiny to a certain extent is in their own hands, even though the fall has come in; for this very fall has been the occasion for the establishment of a relationship in grace with the Son of God who became flesh, a relationship which does not rest upon an untried, if unfallen, creature, but upon the eternal God Himself, who has in grace linked Himself with flesh and blood; and in the perfection of a will as free as that of Adam, and yet eternally incapable of evil or disobedience, yielded Himself up without spot to God, in obedience unto death, that He might bring us to Himself, not as unwilling captives, nor in the perpetual infancy of a dwarfed humanity, but with the full intelligence which goes on developing in ever greater measure — of intelligent, moral, responsible free agents, whose joy it is to recognize their absolute de pendence upon perfect grace and almighty power; who never again will dream of a freedom apart from God, and who will sing in the joy of new creation bliss, "We know no higher liberty than that of being bound to Thee."

Man, therefore, must be tried, must be left to himself to decide the momentous question, Is God God for him; and is he the creature dependent upon and obedient to every command of that God? And yet how carefully God hedges about His creature from anything that would encourage him to depart from the simple path of obedience! About him, all speaks of the goodness, care and kindness of his Creator. The Garden of Eden in which he is lacks nothing to make it a place of sweetest joy; his companionship with an equal, yet dependent fellow-creature who shares in his thoughts, enjoys and reciprocates his affection, and is the companion in the highest sense of all that is noblest and best in him, is a safeguard which cannot be overestimated. There is not idleness in the garden, but the fullest opportunity for the development of all his physical and intellectual powers. He is not merely there to enjoy, but to till the garden, to keep it in order, as well as to partake of its fruits; thus, by implication, to understand the endless variety of plant and tree and fruit spread out before him, to find his tastes cultivated, and to see a link between the tiniest blade of grass beneath his feet and the almighty Creator of the universe above him.

So also with the animal creation. He is established as its head, and must use his intelligence to recognize the various classes into which the animal world was divided. All of this suggests not toil and weariness, but an activity of body and mind, while the affections, as we have already said, go out to a companion who is an equal, immeasurably separated from the brute. Above all, the Lord God is present, in some way making known His will and His command; and, as a little later we see Him walking in the garden in the cool of the day, it suggests, in some measure at least, a communion with the creatures whom He had formed.

Notice, there is but one command given. Man is not confused by a multiplicity of prohibitions, nor burdened with a load of work to be done. As we have said, that work is rather suggested than put into his hand, save that he understands it is his duty. But the absolute command of God is centred in one single word. Neither is it something hard or difficult to understand. It raises but one issue; that is, obedience. One command will do this far more effectually than ten, and by the very fact of being one, concentrates all obedience upon a single point. No room here for forgetting or giving undue emphasis to one command over another. Likewise with the consequences of disobedience, these are not enlarged upon. There would come, of course, the forfeiture of the garden; labor would be changed into toil and the sweat of the face; sorrow, trial of every kind would come in, but these are not mentioned. One solemn, awful, final result will come from disobedience death. There is to be no further trial, no other opportunity. The whole fabric of the first creation rests upon this one pivotal point. If man fails here, the whole structure comes crashing down, and in his disobedience of this one simple commandment, we see the ruin of nature, the crash of worlds, the very lake of fire itself, and the rolling together of the heavens with a great noise. All is blackness where the creature is disobedient.

Space remains only to notice that the Garden of Eden — the paradise of man — is a type, as has already been said, of the Paradise of God, the final dwelling place of redeemed men. The first paradise is evidently a type of the last, and so referred to in the book of Revelation where we cannot fail to see the correspondence between the two. The two trees, of which we have already spoken, together with the river flowing out in its four branches in every direction, and the presence of jewels and gold, all speak of the joy and blessedness of the eternal state. There is but one tree in the midst of the Paradise of God. We may say the tree of knowledge of good and evil has been merged into it through that other "tree" upon which our Lord bore our sins in His own body. That indeed was where good and evil were fully manifested — all of the evil of Satan's malice, of man's rebellion and hatred against God, but the good of His love, of the sinless obedience unto death of His Son, through which the very evil has but furnished the occasion for the display of the good. Truly it is "of death and life the tree." Thus in the midst of the Paradise of God nothing is left but the tree of life, which in itself witnesses to the eternal triumph of good over evil, and which in its twelve manner of fruits suggests the endless fulness and sweetness of the results of Christ's death and present life for us.

It has been suggested that in the tree of knowledge we have typically parental oversight and divine control, pointing to the Father; while the tree of life similarly reminds us of the the Son, and the flowing forth of the river of water of life speaks of the Spirit. Thus the triune God is manifested, which is surely true when we think of the final Paradise. How sweetly, too, does the river remind us of that fulness of the Spirit which shall flow forth from the throne of God and the Lamb throughout the whole creation! No part will be unvisited then; and even now how good it is to trace the flow of that river of water of life from its source in God, springing up in the heart of each believer, a well of water, flowing forth in rivers of service and refreshing in this earth until it is again merged into its own native Source at home!

Heaven is described as a city of gold and jewels, just as here we have the gold of the land of Havilah which is "good;" bdellium and the onyx stone, precious jewels, foreshadows of that final display when God at last shall be free to let shine forth all the effulgence of His glory to His ransomed creatures. Here also we find the bride, the Lamb's wife, of whom the first bride was a type. We merely mention the deep sleep from God which fell upon Adam — the very death of Christ is looked at as from the hand of God rather than what the malice of man was permitted to accomplish. Out of that death is fashioned of Himself a new creature, to be the companion, the bride of Him who "loved the Church and gave Himself for it; that He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the Word, that He might present it to Himself, a glorious Church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing."

We have dwelt at greater length than was intended upon this earliest portion of our Bible, and even now must leave it with what is still a meagre notice of its wondrous fulness of detail. This will suffice, we trust, at least to incite to a livelier interest in this portion of God's word, and stimulate to that reverent and believing search which is always rewarded.

Division 2. (Gen. 3-51).

Salvation through the woman's Seed, illustrated in the life of faith.

We pass now to a more rapid glance at the second portion of Genesis, which includes the remainder of the book.

We reach an absolute division in the third chapter. A breach has taken place between man and God, as complete and absolute as it could possibly be. Death is stamped upon the first creation — a death which, while physical, is also moral, and points forward to the second death, unless there is a sovereign intervention in grace.

This whole second part of Genesis has been divided into seven different portions, and at these we will look briefly.

Sub-division 1. (Gen. 3.)

Life in a Scene of Death. It is blessed to see that parallel with the fall, we have the grace of God working from the very beginning, and it is this which gives character to all subsequent revelation. We may be sure if there were nothing but darkness and evil to be recorded, without hope of deliverance, God would not have troubled Himself to have given us an inspired record of the corruption and rebellion of the human heart. This may suggest why we have so little about the serpent, and indeed why, throughout Scripture, we have but glimpses of Satan's previous exalted position and privileges from which he fell by pride. God gives us just sufficient to show the hopelessness of persistent and defiant sin, in order that we may turn from it unto Him through whom deliverance is accomplished.

Satan is not permitted to assail us as a superior, but must come in the form of one of the lower creatures which has already been put under the dominion of man. Whatever influence he has must be of a moral character, rather than by overpowering will. He approaches the woman, the one who had been put in the place of dependence upon her husband, and whose highest happiness was to defer to his judgment and to be subject to him. The springs of departure from God are suggested here in the alienation, though all unconsciously, of the woman from her husband. She is deceived, is encouraged to use her own reason and judgment, and in doing so falls under the power of the enemy's deception. The man apparently is with her during this trial, and instead of resisting for her, submits to her leadership, taking, as we are distinctly told in the New Testament, not because of deception, but intelligently, that which he knew was in absolute disobedience to God. Satan is a liar as well as a murderer, and he misrepresents God entirely, insinuating doubts of His goodness and a denial of His truth, with an intimation that man can reach a plain of equality with and independence of Him.

Who that reads this narrative and knows his own heart, can fail to see the divine accuracy of all here? Although we have not sinned "after the similitude of Adam's transgression," we have been inoculated with the virus of his sin, and, alas, are quite capable of recognizing in ourselves that distrust of God, that doubt of His goodness and that unbelief in His righteous retribution which marks the entire fallen human family. We see the blind, deceived heart, as the apostle says: "We ourselves also were sometime foolish, disobedient, deceived." We see the ambition to be equal with God, and, alas, we see too that open-eyed clinging to the creature rather than the Creator, even when we know that the end is destruction. Truly, the fall is with us yet in all its awful consequences, intensified by the very multiplication of detail in both the individual and humanity at large. It surely is nothing but wilful unbelief that closes the eyes to the inspiration of these few verses which record the fall.

God comes upon the scene. Oh, how blessed it is to see that in the midst of the shame, the ruin and havoc of sin, God has come down! In this we have in type the incarnation of the Son of God, who "was manifest in the flesh," "God with us," "to seek and to save that which was lost" for evidently it is upon no errand of vengeance that the infinite God enters the garden, that He calls aloud to our terrified parents who shrink and hide in vain amidst the trees; that He probes their hearts and consciences and brings from them the confession of their shame and of their sin.

The whole story is brought out into the light. It is not glossed over. The man's accusation of the woman and implied reproach on God Himself for giving her to him is not allowed to cloud the true point at issue, which is disobedience to God. The women in vain casts the responsibility upon the serpent for deceiving her. Upon the serpent there can be nothing but judgment; yet out of this judgment, in the Seed of the woman who was deceived, comes the promise of One who should crush the serpent's head and gain the victory over him for the fallen sons of men. Here we have the cruse of salt placed at the fountain-head of the bitter waters of sin, a pledge that the very source of evil shall be purged and the author of it eternally judged.

There can be no doubt that our first parents received the promise of life in connection with the judgment of their sin which had brought in death. The promise of the woman's Seed is given in connection with the serpent's judgment, and Adam calls his wife Eve, "life." How beautiful that faith can thus rise into the thoughts of God and see a life given to the very one in connection with whom death had come in! She is the "mother of all living," not only the entire human race, but particularly of Him who was "made of a woman," the true Seed of the woman who has life in Himself and who gives life to every one that believeth on Him.

So also in the coats of skin which God Himself provided, necessarily through the death of the animals whose coverings had been taken, we see provided a divine covering through the death of a Substitute. The fig leaves of human righteousness, all forms of religious expedients, are futile; but who can say aught to those who have been clothed by God Himself? Surely, we see here the joy of the Father as He says, "Bring forth the best robe and put it on him." Thus we have in this chapter the overthrow of Satan, the giving of life, the provision of a perfect righteousness, all through the death of the woman's Seed.

Of the governmental consequences of the fall we need not say much. Grace does not set government aside. The garden has been forfeited and our parents must be thrust outside, while the cherubim guard the entrance to that forfeited paradise. How good it is to remember that those cherubim — as seen in the tabernacle — have their attention riveted upon the mercy-seat and the sacrificial blood sprinkled thereon, which speaks of righteousness fully met, so that man is introduced into and welcomed by the very righteousness of God, not back to his forfeited inheritance, but to an infinitely better one, the paradise of God!

Outside, man must now bow to the pressure of the load which he has put upon himself. His life is to be one of toil, a toil which is indeed a blessing in disguise — for what can be worse for fallen man than to let his heart feed in idleness upon evil? — while the woman in her sorrow and pains is ever reminded, not only of her sin, but of Him, who through a deeper sorrow and pain, is going to deliver her from the results of her evil. Thus at the very outset is implanted in the bosom of the woman that desire for the promised Deliverer.

Sub-division 2. (Gen. 4 and 5.)

The two Seeds, the Flesh and the Spirit. The two lines of evil and of good, of nature and of grace, are now laid down before us in the contrasted seeds of Cain and Abel succeeded by Seth. The first son is the child of nature, and has in him only instincts of the fallen creature; while the second, Abel, by his name, "vanity," suggests the sense of nothingness which is the precursor of the knowledge of grace. The two men are distinguished by the character of their offerings. Cain ignores the curse which has come upon the earth and presents the fruit of his toil to God; while Abel presents that which God had so evidently revealed in the coats of skin, a sacrificial substitute. He is saved on the ground of his gifts, while Cain is rejected for what he was. The enmity comes out, and the first recorded sin, after that of our first parents, is murder, as though God would show how every form of evil is immediately due to the original disobedience.

The incorrigible nature of the flesh is here seen; Cain goes out from the presence of the Lord professing that the burden of punishment is greater than he can bear, yet builds himself a city, makes himself a name, and establishes the whole order of civilization which has gone on ever since. This is the "way of Cain," the way of the flesh. It begins with the denial of sin, a refusal of the sacrifice, and goes on to stain the earth with innocent blood, and to surround itself with comfort and pleasure away from God.

God raises up another to take the place of Abel; in Seth and his seed we have the line of faith, which is brought out in the succeeding chapters.

We do not dwell here upon the significance of the names of these descendants of Seth. Unquestionably, all has meaning, and in its very brevity is pregnant with many suggestions. Enoch blossoms out in the midst of the genealogy which records death, and shows the presence of that life which triumphs over the very presence of death. We see in him the fitting result of being sheltered by the blood of the sacrifice.

Sub-division 3. (Gen. 6 — 11:9.)

The flood and the new world established. The flood gives us God's judgment upon the line of Cain, together with all that is mixed up with it. It shows us also the end of the course of this world and the necessity for inevitable judgment upon man who is away from God. At the same time, we see the provision of grace again in the ark, a type of Christ, wherein is safety not only for the chosen seed of Noah and his sons, but the material for the restoration of things upon the earth after the flood has gone. We have here a type of the Great Tribulation, with provision for the introduction of blessing during the reign of righteousness over the earth in the Millennium.

Human government is now established; a government, alas, which shows its incapacity, not in the authority which has been bestowed, but in the feeble hands to which it has been entrusted. Noah fails to govern himself, and thus becomes a type of the failure of all government, an intimation, however, that One is coming who shall reign in righteousness and bring blessing through His reign.

The nations are here seen established after the flood, and in Babel we have again the rising of human pride and ambition, which will assert itself in the imperial idea which has ever since allured man onward in the path of ambition. Nimrod with his Babel tower seeking for universal rule, only finds the discord which pride brings in, whether in the family, the professing church, the community, or the world at large. The rations are scattered, and the whole history of the world since that time has been an illustration of the same principle — pride and ambition, only bringing the confusion of Babel.

In Noah and his descendants we have the world at large with its national sub-divisions and groups, marked not only by geographical and political boundaries, but by racial and linguistic distinctions. In this account we have at once the unity of the human family recognized, with its diversities explained. The study of language itself indicates this. There is evidently underlying all human speech, to be traced with greater or less clearness, a common mother tongue from which the others have sprung. The interesting researches of comparative philology bring this out and show an essential bond of union between the great eastern and western families of languages, which becomes more and more clear as we look at the cognate groups of those which have been more closely associated together.

The study of language might well form the subject of a special handbook, for the lessons to be gathered from it are rich with spiritual meaning. We dare not begin to speak of what would carry us far afield — how the Hebrew and the Greek are by their very character, structure, etymology and grammar, technically fitted as the vehicles of inspiration for the special portion of the word of God which is given to us in them. If all language is the speech of man, broken, inarticulate, and apparently contradictory — how He who is the Word of God, the true Language embodying all thought in its perfection, is the key which will unlock these mutterings of a disordered humanity and give true interpretations to the longings which seek for utterance from the stammering lips of fallen man!

Sub-division 4. (Gen. 11:10-21).

The pilgrim walk as seen in the life of Abraham.

We pass from the consideration of the world at large to the elect family. For God is interested in giving us, not the history of nations, but the history of His purposes as worked out through faith. The narrative rapidly narrows down, therefore, to those descendants of Shem, the son of Noah, who are the forerunners of the line of faith of which Abraham is the great head. Evidently, idolatry had taken possession of all. Even Abraham himself seems not to have escaped the universal superstition which had lost the knowledge of the true God. Idolatry is not human ignorance blindly groping upward out of darkness into the light, seeking after the true God, eventually to find Him. It does not represent man with his face to the light groping toward it, but rather with his back turned upon the revelation which he once had, going off into ever-deepening gloom.

Unquestionably, Noah had the knowledge of the true God, and his descendants as well. In Ham we see all the impiety which goes on into godlessness, and fittingly he is the head of the first great civilization after Noah, of the builder of Babel, and the progenitor of the great world-powers of that day.

Japheth wanders off into the Gentile regions, to be heard of no more in connection with God, save as he is brought back in sovereign grace; while Shem (Name) suggests that knowledge of the true God who is revealed in His name, which is preserved by sovereign grace.

Idolatry, therefore, is apostasy. The only development that Scripture records is a development away from God. "When they knew God, they glorified Him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things." Notice the order here. Idolatry makes progress, but it is in degradation. First, man who was made in the image of God is deified; then birds of the air, fourfooted beasts, down to the groveling, creeping insects, show the progress of degradation. Thus, in the magnificent temples of Egypt, where architecture reached its culmination of grandeur, we have stately avenues leading up to grand temples with their outer court and inner sanctuary, but enthroned in the innermost recess of this magnificence is a hideous scarabus, a creeping thing, as though Satan delighted to insult God by such a similitude.

It is out from all this idolatry that God in sovereign grace calls Abraham. "The God of glory appeared unto our father Abraham," saying unto him: "Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and come into the land which I shall show thee" (Acts 7:2).

We will briefly note the various divisions in the life of Abraham exemplifying the full pilgrim walk, as they have been given to us.

1. The call of God and the obedience of faith (Gen. 10 — 14). Faith ever separates from nature, not necessarily geographically, but in heart. As we saw at the beginning, when God works he effects division; light is separated from darkness; the waters above from the salt waters of death; the dry land from the sea, etc.; and so it is with His work of grace. Abram is called out from his country, where the Shemites dwell, from his immediate family of the Hebrews, and while for the time being he carries his father's house with him (Terah accompanying him as far as the land of Haran, and Lot going still further), yet eventually he is separated from all that speaks of mere nature. Faith must walk alone with God. He is brought in to a land of which he is given none in possession, but all in promise. This shows us the pilgrim character of faith. Outwardly it has nothing in present possession. It looks forward to its inheritance in the future. It does have its tent however, as we see in Abram, speaking of this pilgrim character, a sufficient if temporary protection; and its altar which shows its access to God and the enjoyment of communion with Him on the basis of sacrifice.

Abram thus comes into the land; but a famine proves too much for his faith, and he passes on down to the land of Egypt where God permits him to see the result of declension in his denial of his wife. Egypt, the world, is no place for faith to settle down in. If it does, it will deny its true connection with grace, the connection of absolute unity.

In mercy God recovers Abram (Gen. 13), and he is brought back to Canaan with much wealth indeed, gathered in Egypt, with Hagar also, the bondservant of whom we hear later. Lot has thus far followed Abram; but now at last the test is applied which separates between the two. It is the willing choice of nature to settle down in the fruitful plains of Sodom, where sight finds much to attract, but faith sees only evil. A righteous man himself, Lot loses his testimony beca se of the feebleness of his faith, and fails to walk in that separation which alone can honor God. He is therefore carried captive by the powers of the world, from which he is only restored by the man of faith from whom he had separated.

Beautifully, in the closing part of this portion (Gen. 14), we find Abram brought into communion with Melchizedek, King of Salem, a type of God's High Priest, who abideth such in the power of an endless life. He it is who blesses Abram and spreads the communion feast of bread and wine for him, while Abram acknowledges his greatness by giving him tithes of all. In the power and energy of the communion thus enjoyed, Abram can face the king of Sodom, the prince of this world with all its greatness, and refuse to take a single thing from him. Has he not feasted in the presence of the King of righteousness? How can he then enjoy the spoils of the king of Sodom?

2. The promise fulfilled to faith (Gen. 15-21). In this portion of the life of Abraham, we have the great example, upon which the apostle dwells in the New Testament, of justification by faith without works. The sentence of death had practically come in upon Abram and his wife Sarai. In view of the utter helplessness of nature, he counts upon the faithfulness of God, who, pointing him to the heavens with their countless stars, declares: "So shall thy seed be." This is the kind of faith which ever glorifies God, an example for the sinner and the saint. One who comes to God with no righteousness of his own, and who takes His word of promise in the gospels, is justified with believing Abram. It is this which characterizes the household of faith throughout all dispensations. They believe in God against sight, counting Him faithful that promises. This is the general subject of chapter 15.

In the next chapter (Gen. 16), we see the restlessness even of the children of God, who would seek for fruitfulness apart from His promise. Thus, the bondwoman Hagar is brought in, and we are left in no uncertainty as to the significance of this, from the epistle to the Galatians. The two covenants are here represented, and the word comes as clearly to faith, with reference to the law, as it did to Abram with reference to the son of the bondwoman: Cast out the bondwoman and her son." "So then, brethren, we are not children of the bondwoman, but of the free."

3. The Seal of the Covenant (Gen. 17). This part of the life of Abram gives us the seal of God's covenant, — circumcision, "a seal of the righteousness of the faith (obtained through faith) which [Abraham] had being yet uncircumcised." It is in connection with this, that God reveals Himself as the Almighty, and renews the promises to Abraham as to the earthly greatness of his descendants. His name is changed from "Abram" to "Abraham" (father of a multitude). The seal of circumcision is typical, doubtless, of what the apostle calls in Colossians "the circumcision of Christ;" that is, it is the sentence of death put upon the natural man. Of course, Israel made a carnal use of this, so that circumcision became distinctively a badge of the first covenant and of the law. If any man be circumcised, "he is a debtor to do the whole law." But, for Abraham, there was a special significance in the seal of circumcision as connected with his faith in God.

4. The Intercessor (Gen. 18). We next see the man of faith in separation from the world, as an intercessor for it. The scene is beautiful in its dignity and simplicity. God can humble Himself to become a visitor at the pilgrim-tent of the man of faith, and here He will not merely make known afresh the promises of blessing to faith, but the certainty of judgment upon the ungodly. Faith has ever to hear this two-fold declaration of the divine purpose. It is beautiful to see Abraham in heart separate from all the defilement of Sodom, yet interceding for that guilty place. It is to be noted that God responds so long as His servant pleads.

5. The End of Lot (Gen. 19). We have here a solemn contrast to the simplicity and dignity of the communion of faith. We see Lot, a child of God evidently, one who "vexed his righteous soul at the filthy conversation of the wicked," and yet who remained a citizen and a ruler amongst them, sitting in the gate of Sodom. With the instincts of courtesy, he finds the heavenly visitants greatly reluctant to accept his proffered hospitality. The contrast with Abraham is marked and the reason as well. Here we have no intercession, nothing but the solemn declaration of immediate judgment, the necessity for which is apparent in the manifested wickedness of the men of that guilty place. Lot is saved "as by fire" his poor wife, whose heart still lingered there, partakes of the judgment which fell upon the ungodly. Solemn warning  to all who would linger in heart-fellowship over a Christless and wicked world.

6. In the Philistine's Country (Gen. 20). We have next Abraham's experience in the land of the Philistines where, most remarkably, we see the second failure of faith in a most crucial point. How strange — did we not know our own heart and history — that twice, in the same way, the man of faith should act with such contemptible cowardice as to deny his own wife! However, the mercy of God is better than the measure of our faith; and Abraham, while the shame of his fault is exposed, is recovered from the snare into which he is fallen.

7. The Birth of Isaac (Gen. 21). Lastly, we have the culmination of Abraham's life in the birth of the long-promised seed, the child of joy, Isaac (laughter). God makes good His promise, and Abraham has practical proof that it is not a vain thing to count "Him faithful who had promised." Sarah too shares in the joy as she had shared in the faith, and the sweet word of praise which she utters may well be taken up by the lips of everyone who knows the spirit of sonship — "God hath made me to laugh, so that all that hear will laugh with me." "When the Lord turned again the captivity of Zion, we were like them that dream then was our mouth filled with laughter, and our tongue with singing."

This closes the life of Abraham in its distinctive character. What remains is so closely identified with Isaac, that it falls under that portion the narrative.

Sub-division 5. (Gen. 22 — 26:33.)

Sonship in obedience and self-surrender as seen in the life of Isaac (Gen. 22-26:33).

(Gen. 22. ) It is very beautiful and suggestive that the first narrative we have in the life of Isaac is connected with his offering up. As an evident type of God's only begotten Son, it is fitting that this should stand out in the prominence which its position gives.

As has already been said, Abraham is also prominent here. We are engaged both with the surrender of faith as seen in him who would give up his only begotten son as a burnt offering in obedience to God, and the response in that son of meek and willing surrender to the will of his father. Here the veil between type and fulfilment is so transparent that we can easily discern the reality under the figure and what a view it gives us of the love of the Father, the self-sacrifice which would give up the Son of His bosom to satisfy claims of infinite righteousness and holiness! How, too, we see the obedience of the Son yielding Himself up to be bound with the bonds of obedient love to His Father's will, to the very cross itself! How the restoration of Isaac from the very dead, "in a figure," points to the resurrection of the Son of God, which thus confirms "the blood of the everlasting covenant" as the basis of blessing which can never be shaken!

(Gen. 23.) Sarah, the pattern holy woman, next passes from the scene. As the mother of Isaac, she is the type of Israel as the nation of whom Christ came, and who nationally pass out of view. Thus in her death we are reminded of the passing of that which is natural, in order that God may perfect His wondrous plan regarding the mystery which He had kept secret from the foundation of the world, the calling out of His Church to be the bride of Christ.

Before the call of Rebekah is recorded, Sarah passes away. How simple and lofty is the whole scene connected with the burial of this holy woman! Abraham, in all the dignity of his bereavement, would secure even in death that separation from the world which their life had maintained. He would not bury his dead in the choicest sepulchre of the men of the land, for faith looks onward to resurrection and the obtaining of an abiding inheritance. The tomb must be purchased, suggestively with the money later on used as a type of redemption. How good it is to remember that the grave is purchased, and so far from being a mere scene of desolation, the trees with their blossoms and fruits, the blessed hopes and assurances of immortality and a glorious resurrection, flourish around it. So too for Israel, for the present buried, there are still the trees of promise growing all around the field of her burial, declaring that the Lord will yet visit His people, bring them up out of their graves of national dispersion and restore them in blessing to the land.

We are now free to follow the history of Isaac as seen in the calling out of Rebekah to be his bride and companion, taking the place of his mother.

(Gen. 24.) It is most suggestive, as already intimated, that the call of Rebekah succeeds both the offering up and restoration of Isaac as from the dead, and the death of Sarah. The call of the Church, beginning at Pentecost, follows after the cross, where the foundation of eternal blessing was laid, and confirmed in the resurrection of our Lord; Israel, for the time being is set aside as a vessel of testimony. The details in this chapter are interesting and exact. It is the father who takes thought for a bride for his son, even as it was God who at the beginning declared, "It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make an helpmeet for him." The servant who is engaged to carry out the will of the father and to bring a suited bride for his son is manifestly a type of the Holy Spirit, who ever hides Himself from view, for it is His one work to glorify Christ and to win souls for him.

The bride must not be an alien, nor taken from those in the land. Our Lord laid not hold of angels, but of the seed of Abraham; and yet in the call of Rebekah there are such manifest reminders of the ministry of grace which reaches out to those who are far from God, that we cannot fail to remember that while grace first saves and then seals, the two acts are consecutive. The scene at the well, where the fair virgin Rebekah is espoused, reminds us much of that later scene, when another weary Traveler sat by the well and won for Himself the heart of a poor wanderer away from God.

The betrothal and the consent of Rebekah follow, and then her immediate going forth tinder the leadership of the servant to meet her lord. How suggestive is that word of diligence: "Hinder me not." So also the Spirit in us would ever say to anything that would detain our hearts upon earth, "Hinder Me not." Under His blessed guidance we go forth to meet the Bridegroom.

In the next portion we have a brief glimpse of what follows the present or Church period — the blessing to the nations of the earth (Gen. 25:1-18). Abraham's children through Keturah are suggestive of the Gentile nations as to whom God made promises to Abraham; while in Ishmael we have the figure of the earthly people Israel, in connection with whom those blessings are bestowed.

We follow on now with the life of Isaac, and see it merging into that of his sons Esau and Jacob (Gen. 25:19-34). In these two sons we have a representation of the two seeds, with the contrast between the flesh and the Spirit. That is first which is natural, "afterward that which is spiritual." The strange contradiction which the believer finds in his own heart, the conflict of two natures, is here given to us in type, with the promise, thank God, of the subjection of the flesh to the spirit and the ultimate triumph of the latter. In Esau, we see the profanity of nature which despises the promises of God,while even the planning of Jacob has in it at least the redeeming feature of a faith that sets value upon that which God has promised.

In Gen. 26:1-22, the weakness of Isaac's faith is manifested. He would, like Abraham, have gone down to Egypt in the time of famine, had not God restrained him, and shows a similar weakness to that of his father in the denial of his wife. Together with this, we have the faithful mercy of God which recovers and gives abundant blessing. This portion of the personal life of Isaac closes with the account of his dwelling at Beersheba," the well of the oath," where again the Philistines, as in Abraham's day, are compelled to own his greatness and his favor with God.

Sub-division 6. (Gen. 26:34 — 37:1).

The discipline and chastening of God, leading on to final victory as seen in the life of Jacob.

In some respects Jacob is the most human of these characters, in whom perhaps we find more that corresponds with ourselves than in the lives of Abraham and Isaac. It has been pointed out that in these three, to whom God gives special promises of blessing, linking His Name with them as the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, we have a suggestion of the Trinity. Abraham as the father of Isaac suggests as we have already seen, the Father and in like manner Isaac, the Son in His sacrifice and obedient submission. In Jacob, we have one who is subjected to discipline and sifting, suggesting those exercises which the Spirit of God produces in order to deliver us from the power of the flesh. Thus in his discipline, we have suggested the work of the Spirit, which again is in fitting accord with the Spirit's self-effacement. He is seen in His work rather than directly or personally.

The life of Jacob may be divided into three main portions, connected respectively with his history in the land (Gen. 26:34 — 28:22) his sojourn in Syria (Gen. 29 — 31); and his recovery to the land (Gen. 32 — 37:1).

We must look at each of these briefly. There is nothing to attract in the wretched deception itself, practised upon his blind aged, father by Jacob with the help of his mother. Deceit and falsehood cannot be condoned, no matter by whom practised, and yet even here, as in the previous case when he defrauded his brother, Jacob indicates that he prized above all things the birthright and the blessing. Esau is a profane man who manifests it in his whole course and in forming those links with the Canaanites which Abraham had distinctly forbidden for his son Isaac. We need not seek to justify Jacob in his deception. He suffers abundant chastening at the hand of God for it, in which his mother shares, being deprived as she was of her favorite child throughout the closing years of her life.

Jacob is obliged to flee from the presence of his outraged brother. In the scene at Bethel we have a beautiful contrast between the grace of God which gives unconditionally, and the results of man's seeking to obtain the promises in a fleshly way. It is, under different circumstances, a repetition of Abraham's efforts through Hagar to secure the promise of God. How beautiful is the scene as the poor, homeless wanderer lies asleep with his head upon a stone! God makes His promises unconditional, but Jacob wakes up to add his faithfulness to God's promises! We feel that it is an intrusion, which God Himself will later eliminate to show that all depended upon Him alone.

The second part of Jacob's life is spent in comparative exile in Syria. Here indeed he is fruitful and experiences the blessing of God in a remarkable way, while at the same time the chastening of God in government because of his untruthfulness is evident. He is the victim of deception, and finds that others besides himself can drive hard bargains; yet in spite of all this there is a manifest faith which attaches the man to the promises of God. His very prosperity does not cause him to lose sight of this, and when Joseph is born — a type of Christ in a marked and distinct way, as we shall soon find — the longing to be back again in the land of promise where the covenant-blessings of God are to be bestowed, and where God Himself had engaged to give him his inheritance, takes possession of Jacob, and he sets his face, in some little way like Abraham at the beginning, toward the land which God would show him.

The last portion of Jacob's life is largely spent in the land of his fathers. He too, as Abraham, is to have his name changed; and in connection with this, he is to have an experience of his own nothingness, even as Abraham had learned his, although in the case of Jacob the struggle is prolonged.

At Mahanaim, we have most significantly, an apparent duality of interests: Mahanaim (two camps), the hosts of God and his own camp. They are not here identical. The angels may indeed encamp about him and deliver him, but they are external to himself. His brother Esau, also, comes to meet him with a hostile force. Here again there is a division of interests. He then divides his own company into two camps, as though realizing his weakness and inability to cope with his brother, hoping at least that one of the companies may escape. But a further division must take place. He must separate himself from all his possessions, even his family, and is left alone while his entire company passes on before. The division, however, is not yet complete. Jacob must realize that he is not at one with God, nor indeed with himself, and in the struggle which follows we see the efforts of nature to win a blessing for itself by its own strength, until God shrivels all this up, and in perfect helplessness at last Jacob is made to realize that God must be all in all — self, nothing. Thus Mahanaim (two camps), in which diversity, division, alienation and weakness are manifested, is changed to Peniel (the face of God), where all is brought into harmony and blessing because the Lord has His true place. Thus are discords ever overcome by the power of God alone; discords in our own hearts, in our relationship with one another, and above all, in our attitude toward God. It is as we bow and confess our own nothingness, that we become as Jacob, "more than conquerors through Him that loved us." A new name is given. It is the name of victory, a "prince with God."

Jacob is now in the land, and we find him exposed to the especial danger of Lot. Prosperity is a sore trial to the people of God, more dangerous in many ways than adversity. In his extremity, when apparently bereft of all his possessions, Jacob clung to God; but as he settles down, building booths at Shechem, purchasing an inheritance with his own money, he lays himself open to the shame and humiliation of the scenes that follow, in which his sons again exemplify his own restless energy in taking the case into their own hands, and bring upon themselves the governmental judgment of God which their father pronounces upon his death-bed. If Jacob is to enjoy blessing in the land, it must be on the basis of pure grace; the grace that found him a wanderer and made unconditional promises to him of blessing, is that alone in which he can be secure.

Thus, how sweet and comforting is the word: "Arise, go up to Bethel and dwell there," a word for every Christian heart that has in any measure departed from its first love.

As a postscript to the life of Jacob, we have the contrast of Esau, who rises to prominence and earthly greatness while yet his brother is but a pilgrim, dwelling in tents. All this is most significant. We are living now in man's day, and need not be surprised if the flesh and its works have a place and importance in the eyes of the world far above the lowly pilgrim testimony of the people of God.

Sub-division 7. (Gen. 37:2-50).

The full display of Christ's glory following His suffering and rejection as seen in the life of Joseph.

As it was in the case of both Abraham and Isaac, the closing part of Jacob's life is merged in that of his son. It is significant indeed that the generations of Jacob (Gen. 37:2) introduce the narrative of the life of Joseph. God would in this way manifest the unity of that divine life which He has been tracing from its beginning in Adam, and show that in each succeeding character there is an enlargement of what existed in the former one. Thus, in the well known septenary series of 2nd Peter, it is not simply an addition which is suggested, but each course is to be characterized with the qualities of that which follows. "Have in your faith virtue (or courage)." Courage is to characterize the faith, just as knowledge is to characterize the courage, and so on. Thus, in Joseph, we have, we may say, the outcome of all the exercises through which Jacob passes. If the lesson we learn from him is the nothingness of the flesh, it ends, not in disaster, but rather in the display of Him who takes the place of the flesh. Thus, Joseph from his very position, as the culmination of the whole of the biographies of Genesis, suggests the full perfection which we find in Christ; and we need not therefore be surprised at the marked exactness of the typical features of his life.

There are three main divisions in the life of Joseph, corresponding to a certain extent with those of his father Jacob. For our present purpose we will group the events under these three divisions, without refusing, however, the more exact and complete sixfold division given to us elsewhere.*

{*See the divisions and notes in the Numerical Bible.}

We have:
1. Joseph in rejection (Gen. 37:2-40).
2. Joseph exalted over the land of Egypt (Gen. 41).
3. Joseph's restoration to his brethren and kindred (Gen. 42-50).

We see him first as the object of his father's special favor: separated in spirit from his brethren who already look with suspicion upon him, and when sent from the vale of Hebron — a glimpse of the place of "communion" which the Son had with the Father, and from which He came forth into the world seeking those who had wandered from God — his brethren plot against him, cast him out, deliver him to the Ishmaelites, a type so evidently fulfilled in the rejection of our Lord and His being delivered up to the Gentiles, that it needs little comment. In Egypt, under the authority of the Gentiles, Joseph is put in prison, suggesting how, not only His own people, the Jews, but the world itself conspired against our Lord. While Joseph was in the prison, in contrast with his faithfulness and uprightness we have the sin of his brother Judah, bringing out again the lesson which is stamped upon the entire word of God, that human excellence is an empty thing, that we must cease from man whose breath is in his nostrils. It is while in the prison that Joseph is the proclaimer of deliverance to the butler and of judgment to the baker, suggesting how, through the cross of Christ, blessing comes to the believer and judgment to the unbeliever.

In the next stage of Joseph's life, he is brought before Pharaoh, declares to him the meaning of the twofold dream he had, and outlines the plan for providing for the time of famine which was soon to come. As "the revealer of secrets" and the "saviour of the world," Joseph is exalted to the place next to Pharaoh, and in this we see a, figure of our Lord's exaltation after His rejection and death to a place where all things are put beneath His feet. It was here that Joseph received his Gentile bride, as it is in the time of His rejection by Israel that our Lord has given to Him the Church who is to be His companion in glory.

The later and larger portion of the narrative of Joseph's life is taken up with those touching scenes with his brethren and his father. Here righteousness and faithfulness are blended with love and tenderness in a way which cannot fail to stir the heart, and to give us a glimpse of those divine ways in righteousness and grace in which Christ deals with the sinner, and brings him into His presence forgiven; or, in a national way, how the Lord will deal with Israel and bring them to repentance, and so introduce them into the blessing which awaits them. It is their need which brings Joseph's brethren to him. The hour of trial which will "try them that dwell upon the earth" is going to test those who still cleave to their national name and claims as "Israel." It is this which Joseph makes his brethren give up. If they are to be brought into blessing, it is not as those who deserve it, but as those who have forfeited everything, to receive it as a matter of divine grace. Thus, in the latter day, Israel will be brought in upon the ground of the pure, unmerited mercy of God — not because they can claim a right to the blessing as being descendants of the fathers. They come in even as the Gentiles, as we see abundantly illustrated on many a page of history and prophecy.

Jacob's hopes have centered in Benjamin since the presumed death of Joseph, and with all the fervor of love which cannot sacrifice its last hope, he refuses to put the child of his old age into the hands of this unknown, apparently cruel, and yet God-fearing ruler of Egypt; but he must place, even as Abraham did of old, the child of promise into the hands of God, to receive him back again not merely as he delivered him up, but as associated with his long-lost, but never-forgotten son through whom all the glory and blessing were to be secured. Thus, Israel must sacrifice their national hopes of greatness and glory, as typified in Benjamin, into the hands of a righteous God, and find that these hopes and claims are made good to them through the very One whom they had rejected and cast out. How accurately and beautifully all brings out the ways of God, whether in connection with the individual sinner or with the nation of Israel as a whole.

And so Jacob reappears in prominence toward the close. He is brought down to Egypt, his beloved son is made known to him, and he finds his true victory, not in his own greatness, but in the greatness of Joseph, who cares for him and all his father's house with a devotion and a wisdom of which Jacob would have been incapable. All this heads up in Christ, who becomes the Nourisher of His people and the Saviour of the world at large, having title to it and to all who are brought through the Great Tribulation into millennial blessing, so that the reign of righteousness which He establishes upon the earth is one in which His absolute claim upon the very persons of those whom He has spared is recognized.

The book closes with the final blessing of Jacob for all his sons, and the scenes connected with his and Joseph's passing away. In the blessing upon Ephraim and Manasseh we see again that reversal of nature which God constantly emphasizes for us. The younger is blessed above the elder, Ephraim above Manasseh; while in the blessing pronounced upon his twelve sons, Jacob gives us a prophetic outline of the ways of God with Israel from the beginning to the final consummation.

In this recapitulation of Israel's history, we find the excellence of the flesh set aside at the very beginning. Reuben cannot obtain the pre-eminence. In Simeon and Levi we have suggested the violence and evil which culminated in the rejection of Christ; while in Judah, we have the coming of the Messiah, who, as the true Shiloh, shall reign; and yet there are intimations of His rejection, and the fact that there must intervene a period of exercise and suffering for the people ere full blessing shall eventuate, in Joseph and Benjamin. Thus we find in those sons following Judah, until Joseph, a submission to Gentile dominance, an apostasy even, with suggestions of the faithfulness of God in preserving His people until, as we said, in Joseph all brightens out again, and Jacob narrates the suffering, the rejection and the subsequent glory of his beloved son, a glory which is linked with the final judgment typified in Benjamin.

Thus we have the whole outline of Israel's history, and their blessing seen in connection with Judah and Joseph. All centers for them, as it does for us as well, in Him who was rejected and separated from His brethren, but exalted by God.

Thus we reach the close of Genesis. We have the end of Jacob, a beautiful, quiet sunset, so strikingly different from his former troublous life. The aged patriarch can bestow his blessing upon Pharaoh, upon Ephraim and Manasseh, upon his twelve sons, and then quietly bowing his head, as he leans upon his staff in worship, he yields up his spirit into the hands of the faithful God his Saviour.

With this deathbed and that which quickly follows it, the death of Joseph, who can question the reality of the faith in these men of God, which still looked for the city which hath foundations? Both Jacob and Joseph demand that their bones shall be laid in the land of promise. Both were looking forward to a better resurrection, and in the hope of that, would rest quietly until God should fulfil His every word.

We have now traced the divine life from its beginning in Adam till its culmination in Joseph. If, on the one hand, the book ends with a coffin in the land of Egypt, on the other, faith shines out brightly as we see the promises still claimed and held fast to, which shall be fulfilled in their appointed time. We are thus prepared to enter upon a new department of God's ways, which fittingly belong to another book in this main group.