City of God

Continuing my look at John as Second Genesis
So, Behold the man on the sixth day, as Pilate says of Jesus, and after six hours suffering upon the cross, He lifts up His voice and what does he say?  “It is finished,” John‬ ‭19:30‬ ‭ESV‬‬.   Not to give it all away, but what is finished?  New heavens, and new earth.  New Genesis.  It is finished.  And he breathes his last and he dies.  And with the evening of this day, it’s now crossed over to the seventh day, Saturday.  In Genesis, what does God do on the seventh day, the Sabbath, Saturday?  He rests.  In John, what does God in Christ do on the Sabbath day, the seventh day?  He rests, in the tomb.  A tomb that is set in a garden.  Not the garden of Eden, but the garden of Arimathea.  We see these themes that are present in both Genesis and John.     

Because John is Second Genesis

Then early in the morning on the 

But she comes to the tomb and she discovers that the stone has been rolled away.  Not knowing to make of a stone that has been rolled away, and an empty tomb, she runs to tell Peter.  She doesn’t walk, she doesn’t move briskly, she 

And we know John gets there first, because John tells us so. 

John’s beginning to believe, Peter doesn’t know what to believe.  They wander off, lost in their thoughts.  Mary remains alone in the garden at the empty tomb, and she is weeping.  Through her tears, she peers into the empty tomb, but this time it’s not empty.  She sees two men in the tomb, one at the head and one at the feet.  This reminds us of the ark of the covenant.  In the Old Testament, we see the ark of the covenant, with its mercy seat, with two angels with their wings on either side.  Through her tears, Mary 

Mary then turns around from peering into the tomb, and there she finds…

Jesus is the gardener of New Creation.  Jesus is the gardener who recovers the abandoned vocation of Adam to tend the garden, to once again make the garden of God beautiful.  That was man’s original vocation.  God planted a garden, east of Eden, put man in the garden after he formed him from the dust and breathed into him the breath of life.  Man becomes a living soul, and he’s given a vocation to tend the garden of God.  I wonder if that garden was to be expanded until it filled the whole world, I wonder if the whole world was to be the garden of God??

But things went wrong, and Adam lost his vocation, and is driven out of the garden.  Adam and Eve have two sons, Cain and Abel. Cain kills Abel.  Then he goes and builds the the first city of all.  No longer are we planting gardens and tending gardens, but we’re building cities and empires, waging wars, fighting, lusting, killing…

It’s a far cry from what we are supposed to be doing, turning the world into the garden of God.  But what do we find here in this first day of the New Genesis?  We find the gardener back in the garden, back at the original vocation.  If we go all the way to the end of the Bible, what do we find?  We find a city.  Abraham had been looking for a city.  Cain had started cities, but they all went bad, every one of them.  Abraham is looking for a city that God would build.  In Revelation 21 and 22, we find a city.  But it’s not a city of concrete and asphalt and steel, it’s a 

More to come…

“Now in the place where he was crucified there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb in which no one had yet been laid. So because of the Jewish day of Preparation, since the tomb was close at hand, they laid Jesus there…Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early, while it was still dark, and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb.”  

John Lewis

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