A Little Time With The 1689: Day 173

Day 173

Of Free Will.

Chapter 9, Paragraph 2.

“…but yet was mutable, so that he might fall from it.”

Scripture Lookup

Genesis 3:6

Reflection

Adam and Eve were righteous. They knew God’s law, loved it, and were able to keep it. They had open and unashamed fellowship with God and each other. Their interactions with creation had no hint of wrong.

And yet…

…with such an ability to will and choose good, there was also an ability for Adam to change his mind. He could will to disobey God and act on that disobedience. This is proven to us in Genesis when he took the fruit from Eve and ate it. The upright man, righteous and holy, plunged from such a happy state to a miserable condition. And it was entirely his choice. Despite blaming everyone else around them, Adam and Eve were fully responsible for their action. Adam was not so severely tempted as to be unable to resist. He had the ability to freely choose what was pleasing to God, but he willingly disobeyed.

What Adam and Eve did was disgraceful. Lest we be too harsh with them, though, let’s remember that we freely choose to sin as well. Christians, who have the ability to overcome temptation (1 Corinthians 10:13), still fail each and every day because we decide to do so. This makes Christ’s intercession on our behalf all the more necessary and urgent, so that we may continue to rely on His work, and not on our own efforts. Through His provision may find a way of escape, and resist evil.

Questions to Consider

  • Do you consider Adam and Eve worse sinners than yourself?

 

A Little Time With The 1689: Day 172

Day 172

Of Free Will.

Chapter 9, Paragraph 2.

“Man in his state of innocency, had freedom, and power, to will, and to do that which was good, and well-pleasing to God;…”

Scripture Lookup

Ecclesiastes 7:29

 

Reflection

There was a time when man freely chose to do good, and was capable of doing it. Pleasing God was an ability that Adam had without the intervention of a mediator. Such an ability is foreign to us, and hard to comprehend. How could Adam do good without relying on the work of the Holy Spirit? What does it mean to be upright without redemption?

Thomas Boston, in Human Nature In Its Fourfold State, says thus: “[God] did not first make him, and then make him righteous, but in the very making of him, He made him righteous.” Boston explains that Adam had perfect knowledge of God’s law, and what God required of him; Adam’s will was inclined to be in line with the will of God; and that his affections were pure and holy. No war against sin raged within Adam and Eve in their pre-fallen state.

Everything Adam and Eve did before the Fall was done in keeping with God and His law. They tended the Garden of Eden and ruled over the creatures with incredible wisdom, for it was not tainted with sin. Guilt was unknown; all pleasures of the world were acceptable and delightful. Their character was above reproach. They were the glorious creation of God.

“Had Adam stood, none would have quarrelled with the representation.” -Thomas Boston

Questions to Consider

  • What do you think Adam and Eve were like before the Fall?