July 31 I Saturday
“Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives among you?” —1 Corinthians 3:16
When God created the world, He created human life as the pinnacle of creation. Different from the rest of creation, “the LORD God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being” (Genesis 2:7). The word “breath” in Hebrew is ruach, which can also mean “spirit.” That is, the Lord God breathed into the man’s nostrils the Spirit of life, and man became a living being. In other words, God created man first as a physical being and then breathed His own Spirit into human life.
Paul reinforced this concept about Adam when he said, “The spiritual did not come first, but the natural, and after that the spiritual” (1 Corinthians 15:46). Paul was contrasting Adam with Christ. For Christ, the spiritual came first, and then the natural. In other words, Christ was spiritually alive before He received a physical body. But Adam was different; he received the natural, physical body first and then the spiritual life.
The perfect paradise that God created for humanity did not last forever. God told Adam, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die” (Genesis 2:16-17). Yet, when Adam ate from that tree, did he instantly fall over dead? Was his corpse found under the tree the next morning? No, Adam was still very much alive after eating the fruit, for his death was not a physical one, but a spiritual. That is, Adam became separated from the life of God.
We are all born inherently into that condition, where we are born physically alive but spiritually dead and separated from the Spirit of God. Paul explains, “Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned...” (Romans 5:12). Our condition in sin sounds bleak, but God did not abandon us. Instead, God could have chosen to make His home anywhere in the whole universe, but He chose to make His home right in the hearts and lives of His people.
The whole purpose of the gospel is to restore the life that was lost in the Garden of Eden and put the life of God back into the human experience. The most important decision we can make in our life is to repent of our sin, and invite the breath—the Spirit of God—into our heart.
Prayer: Lord God, I ask for Your breath—Your Spirit—to come and dwell in my heart. In You alone is there eternal hope. Thank You, Lord.