The garden is a gift from God; it shouts His glory, His diversity, His beauty; it invites our stillness as the wind whispers through it, bestowing the fragrance of His peace upon us as we wonder and marvel at His creation and His love.
I always feel closest to God in the garden. And why not? The two most pivotal events in the history of man happened in the garden. The first lead to defeat, despair and death; the second to victory, joy and life abundant.
“But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.” Genesis 3:3 KJV
The first Adam met Satan in the Garden of Eden; by Adam’s fall sin entered the world and our flesh now contended and fought against the spirit of our God.
“And they heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden.” Gensis 3:8 KJV
We willingly gave up the fellowship and wisdom of the Father to be “wise in our own eyes”. We replaced the perfect will of the Father with the will of our own flesh. In selfishly seeking freedom from God’s rightful authority we condemned ourselves to struggle helplessly in chains—chains of sin and striving, of darkness and death.
“And they came to a place which was named Gethsemane: and he (Jesus) saith to his disciples, Sit ye here, while I shall pray.” Mark 14:32 KJV
The second Adam battled the accuser in the garden of Gethsemane. Unlike Adam, Jesus overcame the will of his own humanity for the will of the Father. His obedience and submission silenced the accuser and set us free; free from the power of sin, free from the wearying struggles of the soul, free from judgement and deserved wrath. Jesus’ humble willingness restored our fellowship with our mighty Creator and defeated satan forever.
“Now in the place where he was crucified there was a garden; and in the garden a new sepulchre, wherein was never man yet laid.” John 19:41 KJV
Finally, having paid the penalty for our sin on the cross, Jesus rose triumphant, in the garden, vanquishing death forever and taking His place at the right hand of God.
“Jesus saith unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou? She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away. Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master. ” John 20:15-16 KJV
Mary was actually more right than she knew. Jesus is our gardener, planting us, pruning us, watering us, growing us, completing a good work in us until the day He returns for us. Because of Him, we can come to the Father without shame; the penalty of our guilt being paid by our perfect Redeemer whose death became our life.
I will praise my Father God who displays His glory in the garden and in whose grace I grow.
“For the Lord shall comfort Zion: he will comfort all her waste places; and he will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of the Lord; joy and gladness shall be found therein, thanksgiving, and the voice of melody.” Isaiah 51:3 KJV