Genesis 2:9 says: And out of the ground the Lord God made to spring up every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The tree of life was in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
Why did God create the tree of life? I’ve asked myself this question since I was a kid. After all, the first humans were eternal. They were born to live forever. Once they sinned, they lost their eternality. Paul teaches us that the wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23). As a result of sin, humans began to die. Then what was the purpose of the tree of life in the Garden of Eden before sin produced death? If humans were eternal anyway, the tree gave them what they already had. When humans sinned and became mortal, God banned Adam and Eve the access to the tree of life. The tree of life seems to make no sense. After all, within the reasoning I presented, it doesn’t make sense. They had eternal life before sin, and they’re access to the tree was banned after they sinned.
The Bible begins and ends with the tree of life. Revelation 21 presents the new heaven and Earth where the bride of Christ will live together with God. There will be no more death, no more crying, no more pain (Revelation 21:4). The next chapter in Revelation presents the new Jerusalem through which the river of life was flowing and on both sides of the river, the tree of life brought forth its fruit all year-round. There won’t be any curse in this new world, unlike the curse that came over the first humans after they sinned. That means all the consequences of sin will be annulled. Yet verse 3 says the leaves of the tree of life are for the healing of the nations. Why would there be healing needed since death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire? (Revelation 20:14) Won’t humans be immortal again?
What I am about to say can sound very controversial (even heretical to some). To be honest, I agree it is a speculation, and I am not certain about the argument, but none the less I’ll say it.
Although there won’t be any sin in the new Jerusalem, the Human state will be somewhat like that of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden since both places require a tree of life. There are many similarities between the two Gardens. In other words, human existence will not be as celestial as we imagine it. Human frailty was part of the Edenic life, is part of the current state and will continue in the new Jerusalem. But when humans will get hurt in the New Jerusalem, they will get healed by the tree of life. This was probably the same condition humans had in the Garden of Eden. That does not mean humans could have died in Eden because they had the means for healing. Otherwise, I don’t see the tree of life making sense in both of the Gardens unless it does what it says in Revelation 22: it heals.
Ultimately, what was required and will be required in the New Jerusalem is faith. Just like the Israelites in the wilderness had to believe and look at the bronze serpent, so it was in the Garden of Eden. In case some kind of accident happened or simply because they were aging, they had to eat from the tree of life to be regenerated. In such a case, death did not happen. It will be an act of continuous faith in the New Jerusalem as well. Faith will be required even there. We will live by faith even in the New Jerusalem.
As I said, I am only speculating on this topic. What are your thoughts? Does this argument make sense in any way? Let me hear your arguments in the comment section. To subscribe, click HERE.
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