Firstborn Sonship of Christ
Vol 26 No 6
The New Birth
Series Number: 31
INTRODUCTION TO THE OLD TESTAMENT
A "WILL" TYPE OF COVENANT
The book of Isaiah, as well as the testimonies of Simeon and Anna in Lk 2 have provoked a review of the Kinsman Redeemer throughout the Old Testament, especially in Gen 3. As a result, those studies are hereby postponed in order to present a study on the Kinsman Redeemer which will greatly aid new students of the Scriptures and enrich our understanding of God's covenant with Adam and all the following Bible covenants.
13 "For if the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh,
14 "How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?
15 "And for this reason He is the Mediator of the New Covenant, by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions under the first covenant, that those who are called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance.
16 "For where there is a testament, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator.
17 "For a testament is in force after men are dead, since it has no power at all while the testator lives.
18 "Therefore not even the first covenant was dedicated without blood," Heb 9:13-18.
The "first covenant" here refers to the Law Covenant, yet the same "will" ("last will and testament") principle governs all the "covenants of promise" (Eph 2:12) from the covenant with Adam through the New Covenant. Each covenant was more than an ordinary covenant agreement.
An ordinary covenant is not a "will" where the covenant maker dies. Yet each of "the covenants of promise" was both a covenant and a "last will and testament," where Christ as the Testator of the testament or must die. In these covenants of promise, God provided for Christ as both the covenant Maker and Kinsman Redeemer to die in a "figure" or "type" in order for the "last will and testament" type of covenants to become effective to the degree seen throughout the Old Testament.
SEALED WITH SEVEN SEALS
Jeremiah, as a kinsman redeemer, wrote a document of purchase with two copies before witnesses, one sealed and one open, Jer 32. These documents were put in safe keeping toward a future date of possession. In Rev 5 we read of a document in the Father's hand that is sealed with seven seals – the document prepared and sealed in the presence of witnesses (the cherubim, twenty-four elders, and angels, Rev 5)before the creation of the world as we know it, Job 38:1-7; 1Pe 1:18-20; Eph 1:3-5; et al. The context of Rev 5 reveals that this document is one of redemption (a "last will and testament"
), and that Christ, as a Lamb slain (died, buried, raised, and in a deified body), was the only one worthy to break the seals for the execution of the term of the "last will and testament."
In all the Old Testament covenants, Christ was represented by the animals that were sacrificed. These animals died and their blood was sprinkled, signifying not only the death of the testament Testator, but also of the efficacious benefits which necessarily followed the death, burial, and resurrection rebirth of the body into divine life. Adam and Eve had life before they sinned, but they did not have divine life. All these benefits were written into all the "last will and testament"
type of Bible covenants. In this study of the Kinsman Redeemer we will discuss some of the major benefits provided in all the covenants, "last will and testaments."
CHRIST IS THE TESTATOR
"For where there is a testament, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator,"
Christ is the brightness of God's glory and the expressed image of His person, Heb 1:3. It was no doubt Christ (the Seed of the woman) in a theophany who slew the animals and clothed Adam and Eve with the skins of the slain animals. As He did this, He made a covenant (a "last will and testament"
) with Adam and his descendants, Hos 6:7. As Christ made this "last will and testament"
with Adam, He demonstrated through the death of the animals how He, as the Seed of the woman, would die for Adam's sin and the sins of mankind.
This "last will and testament"
must be brought back into major focus in all our Bible interpretation. The "blood"
throughout the Bible signifies the "death"
of the "Testator,"
and, without exception, testifies that the covenants are a "last will and testament"
by Christ, according to the will of the Father, and on behalf of the faithful covenant people and all creation.
THE EXECUTOR OF THE WILL
"How will the ministry of the Spirit not be more glorious?"
The Holy Spirit is the Executor (or Administrator) of all the "last will and testament"
covenants, Gen 6:3; 2Co 3; Heb 9:14. The Law Covenant was a ministration of death (2Co 3:7); however, the Holy Spirit was and is the Testament Executor and administrator of "grace"
under all the covenants, Gen 6:3; Zec 4:6; 2Co 3. All the works of the Father and the Son Christ were done by the Holy Spirit (Mt 3:16-17; 4:1; 12:28; Mk 1:10-12; Lk 4:1,14,18-19; Jn 1:33; 3:34; Rom 1:4; Heb 9:13; Rev 3:1; 4:5; 5:6)
THE KINSMAN REDEEMER AND THE BODY OF CHRIST
The word "redeem"
and its derivatives, such as redeemer, redemption, etc., are used more than 160 times in the Scriptures, indicating that the Lord, directly or in "types,"
is the Kinsman Redeemer of His covenant people and their promised possessions. The book of Isaiah has at least 27 such references which are directly associated with God or Christ as our Kinsman Redeemer, and require His divine resurrection birth.
The primary intent of this brief study is to emphasize the explicit "oneness"
relationship between the Kinsman Redeemer and the body of Christ. Some details of the subject will not be covered, yet the study will be broad enough to establish that the "body of Christ"
is a major and vital theme throughout the Scriptures. That is to say: the faithful covenant people have been partaking of "the body of Christ" "by faith"
throughout both Old and New Testaments.
LAWS GOVERNING KINSMAN REDEEMER,
The laws specifically addressing a kinsman redeemer are primarily here indicated (Ex 6:6; 13:13-15; 34:20; Lev 27; Num 18:15-17; Ruth 3 & 4), and we will quickly recognize that the work of the Kinsman Redeemer is the Gospel of Christ in all its fullness, and is the major theme of the Scriptures from Genesis to Revelation. As previously stated, Job recognized God and the Redeemer as one and the same Person, Job 19:25-27. Job understood that he, in his spirit, would not die, but would be carried down to Sheol (Paradise in this case) in the earth, as Jacob later also said about himself and about Joseph whom he thought was dead, Gen 37:35. See also 1Sa 28:7-20.
Those Old Testament saints who understood the "distinguishing marks" of the Kinsman Redeemer had no difficulty identifying the suffering Servant of Isaiah 53 as Jehovah, Israel's Redeemer, Isa 41:14; 43:14; 44:6,24; 47:4; 48:17; 49:7,26; 54:5,8; 59:20; 60:16; 63:16. Furthermore, they should have clearly recognized that God and the Kinsman Redeemer are one and the same, as Job did (Job 19:25-27) before Moses wrote the book of Genesis, and before Isaiah wrote the book of Isaiah. Correlate the above scriptures with Isa 7:14 and 9:7-8. We will demonstrate from Gen 3 and related scriptures that the Seed of the woman would be born, would live a sinless life, would die for the sins of Adam and his descendants, would come back to life in a divine birth, a resounding victory over death, and as the Avenger of blood would crush the power of Satan.
1. Under the Law Covenant God established a period of 50 years within which a very poor person could sell himself to another person as a bondservant. In very dire circumstances this could include his family and his property. However, the fiftieth year was a year of jubilee when the poor person would be set free with all his family and property.
2. However, the bondservant and all that belonged to him could be redeemed by a near kinsman at any time during that 50 year period. This serves the need for a kinsman redeemer within the nation of Israel, but more importantly demonstrates the necessity of the Seed of the Women as a Kinsman Redeemer to perfect God's plan of redemption for His creation, specifically and above all else, of His redemption plan for a faithful covenant people to be brought into a divine "oneness" with the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
3. This was God's purpose before creation (Act 2:23; Rom 9:22-23; Eph 1:4-11; 2Ti 1:9; Titus 1:2; 1Pe 1:18-20; Phi 2:6-11), and these passages, among others, reveal that God's plan of redemption was predestined before creation began. God is omniscient, omnipresent, and omnipotent, so all eternity past and future is forever a present fact with God; yet, God is demonstrating His redemption and its endless results in a time frame divided into ages of ages.
4. Thus God placed before Adam (who represented all his descendants) a simple choice of faith-obedience or wilful disobedience. God provided countless foods for Adam and Eve to enjoy, and among these foods He placed the tree of life and the tree of knowledge of good and evil. God warned them not to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil lest they "die." This required of them a simple choice, but one of immeasurable consequences. To eat of the tree of life would bring the divine fullness of God, but to eat of the tree of knowledge would bring "death," which meant separation from God with terrible and eternal punishments. Of course, God's instructions and power were altogether sufficient for Adam to make the right choice. God is always righteous, just, and sufficient in all that He decrees and does.
5. Man's willful disobedience required God's already predestined Kinsman Redeemer functions, 1Pe 1:18-20. These functions demonstrate God's infinite and eternal attributes of love, compassion, mercy, forbearance, justice, etc., which otherwise would have been forever dormant in God's person. Here God can be just and still be merciful, be merciful and still be just. The Kinsman Redeemer, His firstborn Sonship, and rebirth into divine life are foremost in God's redemptive purpose, Phi 2:6-11; Heb 2:3-18.
THE DIVINE AVENGER
"And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He shall crush your head, and you shall bruise His heel,"
1. The Seed of the woman is God's appointed "Avenger of blood"
who will crush Satan's authority and power. The Avenger therefore is also the Son of God because God (Elohim) is the Creator and Judge of all things, which includes being the Avenger of all evil, Gen 1:1 thru Gen 2:25; Jn 1:1-3; Col 1:15-20; Heb 20:33. We later read that the Messiah, the Kinsman Redeemer, was and is Elohim from the beginning, and yet with no beginning, Gen 1:26; 3:22; Ps 8:3-6; 45:6-8; Zec 12:10.
2. The Seed of the woman is also the Avenger of blood on behalf of all creation and against all who violate God's laws of righteousness. Vengeance belongs to God (Heb 10:30) – the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, who mutually created, judge, and govern all things, Gen 1:26; 3:22; 11:7; Isa 6:8; 48:16; Mt 28:19. The Father has put all things under the Son (Ps 8:3-6; Heb 2:6-8) and appointed the Son as Judge of all, Jn 5:22. This was ordained before creation began (1Pe 1:18-20; 2Ti 1:9; Eph 1:4-11; 3:9-11), and was demonstrated by the Kinsman Redeemer slaying clean animals and clothing Adam and Eve with the skins of the animals, Gen 3:21.
3. Since the Seed of the woman is the Avenger, we must not seek to avenge ourselves. God has placed authorities in certain places to rule, judge, and punish the disobedient (Rom 13; 1Ti 3; Eph 6), and those authorities often corrupt judgment. We are warned not to corrupt judgment by avenging ourselves, Mt 5; Rom 12:19-21; et al. Yet we are determined to avenge ourselves, do somebody in, teach them a lesson. Before we can reach maturity in godliness, however, we must undergo a difficult lifelong course in letting God be our Avenger. It will increase our reward immensely to "back off,"
pray for the repentance of the wrongdoers, and let the Avenger of blood plead our case.
4. The Seed of the woman is furthermore the eternal haven of "refuge"
for all who will seek refuge in Him throughout their lives. This was demonstrated immediately after Adam and Eve had sinned, as God was providing Adam with a revised covenant, which was also binding on all Adam's descendants. This revised covenant became a "last will and testament,"
and was sealed with the blood of animals, as a sign or token of the death of the Testator or Kinsman Redeemer. In this way God ordained a method of worship of the Godhead through the symbolic use of animal sacrifices. And in His covenant exposition, God provided far reaching and full instructions concerning constant and all-inclusive righteous living and proper worship of God.
5. Under the Law Covenant God established six "cities of refuge,"
where one who accidentally shed the blood of another to the point of death could flee for refuge, Num 35:1-34; Deu 19; Jos 20. These six cities were among forty-eight cities which were designated to be cities for the Levites throughout all the land of Israel. The Levites were the priestly tribe (Num 3), while the actual priests were the sons of Aaron, Lev 8 & 9. The man-slayer had to flee to a city of refuge, where he would be judged, and if found not guilty of murder, he was required to remain within the gates of the city of refuge until the death of the officiating high priest. These cities of refuge represented Christ as our Kinsman Redeemer: see below.
6. The priesthood also served as a refuge, particularly the person and ministry of the high priest, Ex 39; Lev 1 thru 9. The tribe of Levi was set aside as the priestly tribe, with the sons of Aaron being the priests and the remainder of the tribe being the immediate aids to the priests in their priestly ministry. The Seed of the woman is the Kinsman Redeemer, is God (Elohim) in human flesh, and is foreshadowed by the high priests of the Levitical priesthood, Heb 9. We can easily see in the New Covenant priesthood that the High Priest and the other priests are one and the same priesthood (1Pe 2:4-9) in one and the same house. Heb 10:21-25; 3:6; 9:11. And in the mixed metaphor the "house"
is one and the same "body of Christ,"
Eph 2:15-22; 3:6; 4:1-16; Col 1:18,24; 1Ti 3:15. Christ, in one metaphor is the Foundation and Chief Corner Stone of the house of God (Mt 16:18; 1Co 3:11; 1Pe 2:4-9), and in the other metaphor He is the Head of the body which is His human body, now deified.
7. Christ is our "refuge"
from God's wrath and our divine "living way"
(Jn 14:6; Heb 10:20) into the presence of God into a most blissful oneness with God, Heb 6:18 (16-20); Eph 5:31; Jn 17:21-23. In these passages Christ is referenced as our "refuge"
as well as our High Priest who prepared an entrance for us through the veil (His deified flesh body) into the presence of the Father.
THE SEED OF THE WOMAN IS OUR REDEEMER,
"And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He shall crush your head, and you shall bruise His heel,"
Satan deceived Eve and thereby caused Adam to wilfully disobey God's firm warning. For mankind to be redeemed, the Redeemer must perfectly obey God as a man, die as a man for man's sins, gain victory over "death"
by resurrection into a divine body (the new birth), and crush Satan's power.
Since we tend to minimize the heinousness and eternal devastation of sin, eating the forbidden fruit appears to be only a small act of disobedience on Adam's part. However, any act of disobedience was sin and required "death."
Also, the Scriptures say "for whoever shall keep the whole Law, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all"
(even the worst of sins), Ja 2:10.
God had also warned: "but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die."
Gen 2:17. We take the Word of God much too lightly, and also we must not think that God did not explain and emphasize what "die"
meant. God's "last will and testament"
Consider, also the sweet influence of God's knowledge through the Gospel:
11 "Say to them: 'As I live,' says the Lord GOD, 'I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live. Turn, turn from your evil ways! For why should you die, O house of Israel?'"
14 "Now thanks be to God who is always leading us in triumph in Christ, and through us is diffusing the fragrance of His knowledge in every place,"
15 "For we are to God the fragrance of Christ among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing.
16 "To the one we are the aroma of death leading to death, and to the other the aroma of life leading to life. And who is sufficient for these things?"
God makes sure that we have sufficient knowledge of the things we need to know, Ps 19; Jn 1:9; Act 14:16-17; Rom 1:20. Six times the Spirit moved Paul to write: "I do not want you to be unaware,"
Rom 1:13; 11:25; 1Co 10:1; 2:1; 2Co 1:8; 1Th 4:13. See also Deu 6:4-9; Jos 1:5-9.
But Adam wilfully disobeyed God and we all sinned in him, Rom 5:12. So God placed a ravaging and all-encompassing "curse"
on His creation to aid mankind to understand and fear God because of sin, Gen 3:17-19; Rom 8:19-22. Yet God promised a Redeemer who would be the Seed of the woman. And God's plan of redemption required that God become our Kinsman and perfect our redemption in order to demonstrate His attributes of love, compassion, mercy, forbearance, justice, etc., Jn 3:16; 1Jn 4:9-10; Rom 9:22-23; Ph 2:6-11.
THE SEED OF THE WOMAN IS OUR KINSMAN
"And I will put enmity be- tween you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He shall crush your head, and you shall bruise His heel,"
Man sinned and man must be punished for his sin and sinful state of being. One man sinned and death (condemnation) passed upon all his descendants for all sinned in him:
12 "Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned...
18 "Therefore, as through one man's offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man's righteous act (generic for all Christ did in His human body) the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life.
19 "For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man's obedience many will be made righteous,"
This requires the Redeemer to have a virgin birth. God became a human because every seed of man is a sinner, and is unable to save himself or anyone else, Rom 5:12-19. The Redeemer must have a perfect start (a virgin birth without the sin nature) in order to have a perfect finish, "without blemish and without spot,"
1Pe 1:18-20. The Redeemer must have a sinless birth, live a sinless life, and then die for the sins of all of mankind, as portrayed by the death of the animals that God used to clothe Adam and Eve, Gen 3:21. But God gave precise instructions on how man must worship God; for example, he must offer in sacrifice specific animals without blemish (sinless) and burn their bodies on an altar (judgment), Gen 4:4; 8:20-21. Cain sinned willfully by not following these instructions, Gen 4:1-7-12.
THE FALLEN RACE
"Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned," Rom 5:12
Sin brought death, a sinful state of being, and eternal punishment in hell and the lake of fire. Man's sinful nature has produced evil imaginations, distrust, hate, fear, strife, murders, wars, and grievous atrocities of every imaginable kind.
14 "Now Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied about these men also, saying, ‘Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of His saints,
15 "'To execute judgment on all, to convict all who are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have committed in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him.'" Jude 14-15.
Enoch lived 365 years and "walked with God" in a most pleasing to God way for the last 300 years of his life, Gen 5:24; Heb 11:5. He was walking with God the last 250 years of Adam's life, and we are surely correct in believing that Adam and Enoch had countless hours of conversations about God, about the sinfulness of the human race (Jude 14:15, above), about the offerings of Cain and Abel, about the proper method of worshiping God, about the meaning of animal sacrifices, about the Kinsman Redeemer, about being clothed with the animal skins, about the significance of the firstborn in life, in sacrifice, and in the future life, about the birthright, about every kind of sin, about every deviation from righteousness, about the coming of the Lord, about the coming judgment of the avenging Kinsman Redeemer upon the righteous, upon the wicked, and upon Satan (Jude 14-15), and endless questions about the last will and testament, especially about the redeeming Testator of the Testament and Him being the Seed of the woman.
GOD PROVIDES INSTRUCTIONS
21 "And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its place.
22 "Then the rib which the LORD God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man.
23 "And Adam said: ‘This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called woman, because she was taken out of man,'" Gen 2:21-23.
God put Adam into a "deep sleep" and Adam "slept." Therefore Adam had no knowledge of God taking the rib out of him. God either made the woman from the rib and then awoke Adam and explained the matter to him, OR, God awoke Adam, showed him the rib, made the woman from the rib and explained human marriage and the bride of Christ projection as Adam watched. Either way God explained the process to Adam or Adam would not have known and would not have said what he did in verse 23 above. Also, God did much more teaching in order for Adam to say what he did in verse 24 that follows:
24 "Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh," Gen 2:24.
This is part of the "last will and testament" (Heb 9:12-22) that God made with Adam in the Garden of Eden. All the "covenants of promise" (Eph 2:12) were made by the Kinsman Redeemer (Heb 8:12-22), were according to the Father (1Pe 1:18-20; Act 2:23; Jn 5:30), and required the death of the Testator (the Kinsman Redeemer), Heb 9:12-22.
The "one flesh" (Gen 2:24 above) is tantamount to the same expressions in the New Covenant (1Co 6;15-17; Eph 1:22-23; 3:19; 5:31-32; Col 1;19; 2:9-10; Jn10:30-36; 14:8-11; 17:21-23; et al), and requires that considerable explanation of the significance of the expression was given by God to Adam in the Garden of Eden. This "last will and testament" that God made with Adam and his descendants was and is immeasurably more important than any "last will and testament" that man can make.
What did Adam know about "one flesh," and what did Adam know about fathers, mothers, and sons and daughters? Very evidently, God told him much more than is written in Genesis 1, 2, and 3; although the spiritual nuggets of these chapters are of immeasurably more value than the finest gold.
25 "And there are also many other things that Jesus did, which if they were written one by one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that would be written. Amen," Jn 21:25.
This same principle is true of the instructions God gave to Adam in the Garden of Eden before and after Adam sinned. More evidence of this fact will follow.
THE SLAYING OF ANIMALS
"Also for Adam and his wife the LORD God made tunics of skin, and clothed them,"
Man's sin required the shedding of blood and the death of the Kinsman Redeemer, and as a means of instruction God took the life of animals and clothed Adam and Eve. But why the animals? The animals did not sin! It is clear throughout the Scriptures, however, that the animals used in sacrifices (beginning in the Garden of Eden) represented the life, death, and resurrection birth of Christ into a divine body. For instance:
"The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, ‘Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!'"
We can be assured that God explained this symbolism in detail to Adam and Eve when He slew the animals in the Garden of Eden and gave His exposition of His "last will and testament."
We can likewise be confident that God through Adam and Eve and by revelations clearly revealed the same symbolisms to Cain, Abel, Seth, Enoch, Noah, Melchizedek, Job, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, etc.
Adam lived 930 years, through most of Enoch's life while Enoch walked with God and prophesied 300 years. Noah was born shortly over 30 years after Enoch was translated and just over 60 years after Adam died, and while most of Adam's descendants were still living. It appears evident that the symbolism which the sacrifices demonstrated of the Kinsman Redeemer was accurately preached by Adam and Enoch throughout their lives.
Also Noah's descendants to the fourth generation lived through most of Abraham's life, with Shem living through 150 years of Abraham's life, and Eber, the forth from Noah, outliving Abraham by four years. We have no doubt that Melchizedek and Abraham understood God's "last will and testament"
and the relationship between the animal sacrifices, the Kinsman Redeemer, Gen 12:7-8; 13:3,18.
ANIMAL SACRIFICES IN WORSHIP
21 "Also for Adam and his wife the LORD God made tunics of skin, and clothed them," Gen 3:21.
4 "Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat. And the LORD respected Abel and his offering," Gen 4:4.
20 "Then Noah built an altar to the LORD, and took of every clean animal and of every clean bird, and offered burnt offerings on the altar. Gen 8:20-21.
God gave Adam and his descendants precise instructions for the sacrifice and burning of specified animal bodies on an altar in worship ceremonies. Otherwise, Abel would not have known precisely what kind of sacrifices to offer and Cain would not have been guilty of not offering the Redeemer's death portraying sacrifice, Gen 4:1-7. God probably demonstrated this procedure of worship as He killed the animals and made Adam and Eve garments of the animal skins, Gen 3:21.
4 "By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts; and through it he being dead still speaks," Heb 11:4.
1. Cain did not listen carefully and lightly regarded God's "last will and testament" instructions. Clearly, Cain and Abel had been properly instructed to worship God, which both of them did. But Cain did not follow precise instructions as Abel did. We must daily give the more earnest heed to the Word of God, Heb 2:1-3. Cain's offering did not portray that the wages of sin is death, Rom 6:23. Worship of God is a covenant (a "last will and testament") related matter, and the death of the Testator is necessary, Heb 9:14-22. We are correct in affirming that God's "last will and testament" instructions to Adam were passed on to Cain and Abel by Adam and perhaps by the Lord. The death and resurrection of the Testator and Kinsman Redeemer must be portrayed in worship that properly defines the "last will and testament" of the Testator, who must come back to life.
2. The Death of the Testator Was Necessary. Cain and Abel had been instructed to sacrifice animals as they worshiped God. It should be obvious from the above scriptures that Abel was following specific instructions as he chose animals from the flock. God had instructed Adam and Eve about caring for domestic animals as well as the benefits of farming: Cain chose farming and Abel chose sheep herding – so far so good, but sin requires the shedding of blood in the death of the covenant Maker, Heb 9:12-28. Though the first-fruits of farm produce was required and very meaningful under the Law Covenant in worship and in burnt offerings (Lev 2; et al), it is nevertheless unacceptable without the death of the Lamb of God, 1Pe 1:18-20.
3. The Firstborn of the Flock. Cain and Abel had been instructed to worship God by sacrificing the "firstborn of the flock" which is vital in order to qualify for the firstborn sonship of Christ – it projected the resurrection of the firstborn. Cain was aware of the birthright of the firstborn (Gen 4:1-12), and his anger raged when his offering was not accepted by God, Gen 4:1-7. We must recognize that God's instructions to Adam included far more than is revealed in the first three chapters of Genesis. The first seven verses of Gen 4 reveal that the firstborn sonship and its birthright of "oneness" with God are of major focus in portraying the Kinsman Redeemer through the Seed of the woman. We must recognize that the firstborn sonship is the major theme of the Scriptures, and as a Lamb slain before the foundation of the world, Christ has always been the Firstborn from the dead, 1Pe 1:18-20; Rev 5:6,12; 13:8.
4. "The wages of sin is death," Rom 6:23; 5:12 – "but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die," Gen 2:17. The Seed of the woman (the Kinsman Redeemer) must die. That is punishment, but that is only part of the punishment: the "body" of the firstborn lambs of the flock must also be "burned" on the altar, Gen 4:4. Abel knew this, and Cain also knew it or he would not have been rejected, Gen 4:1-7. The burning of the body of the animals portrayed the Seed of the woman enduring God's wrath for man's sins. This is an integral and central part of the offering, Gen 4:4. 1) The burning of sacrifices and offerings spoke first of the righteous judgment of God (1Co 3:13-15) – the Kinsman Redeemer, who was thus judged, is also the One the Father has appointed as Judge of all, Jn 5:21-23. 2) The burning of the sacrifices again spoke of purification, Isa 48:9-12; Zec 13:9; Mal 3:3; 1Co 3:13; 1Pe 1:6-7. 3) The burning of the sacrifices also spoke of the pleasure of God in the finished product of tried and approved stones, Gen 8:20-21; Lev 2:1-2; Ex 29:18,25; 30:7-8; Isa 28:16; 53:10-12; 1Pe 2:4-9.
A BODY YOU HAVE PREPARED FOR ME
5 "Therefore, when He came into the world, He said: "Sacrifice and offering You did not desire, but a body You have prepared for Me.
6 "In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin You had no pleasure
7 "Then I said, 'Behold, I have come -- In the volume of the book it is written of Me -- To do Your will, O God.....'
10 "By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all," Heb 10:5-7,10; Ps 40:6-8.
We must not overlook this major fact: the bodies of all the animal sacrifices throughout the Bible represented the "body" of the Seed of the woman – "the body of Christ," as the Kinsman Redeemer. John the Baptist twice introduced Jesus as "the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world," Jn 1:29,36.
RESURRECTION OF THE SEED OF THE WOMAN
15 "And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He shall crush your head, and you shall bruise His heel," Gen 3:15.
God predestined that Satan would crucify the Seed of the woman (demonstrated by the death of the animals that were slain in the Garden which represented the Seed of the woman), but the Seed of the woman must fully destroy the power of Satan. This requires resurrection.
22 "Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a Man attested by God to you by miracles, wonders, and signs which God did through Him in your midst, as you yourselves also know:
23 "Him, being delivered by the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God, you have taken by lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death;
24 "Whom God raised up, having loosed the pains of death, because it was not possible that He should be held by it.
25 "For David says concerning Him: 'I foresaw the LORD always be-fore My face, for He is at My right hand, that I may not be shaken.
26 "Therefore My heart rejoiced, and My tongue was glad; moreover My flesh also will rest in hope.
27 "For You will not leave My soul in Hades, nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption.
28 "You have made known to Me the ways of life; You will make Me full of joy in Your presence," Act 2:22-28.
David by inspiration wrote these words, and Jesus read and sang them as addressed to Himself. How did our Kinsman Redeemer explain and demonstrate this "last will and testament" to Adam and Eve? – by slaying the animals and explaining that the animals represented the Seed of the woman. God's explanation of the "last will and testament," the death of the Testator, and His resurrection victory over death in a divine "tree of life" body to crush Satan's power is a vital part of the Testament
1. The animals represented the Seed of the woman. God slew certain animals and explained that the animals represented the Seed of the woman as the Lamb of God. This explanation by the "will" Maker in the Garden is made necessary by the context and is also paramount through the Scriptures.
2. The Seed of the woman must die. The Testator) must die for the sins of Adam and his descendants. The wages of sin is death (Rom 6:23; 5:12), and the Kinsman Redeemer must die in our stead according to the "last will and testament," Heb 9:12-22. In the Garden of Eden, God explained and demonstrated this requirement of the "last will and testament" by slaying the animals and providing clothing for Adam and Eve with the skins of the animals.
THEY SHALL BE "ONE FLESH"
23 "And Adam said: This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called woman, because she was taken out of man.
24 "Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh," Gen 2:23-24; Mt 19:4-6; 1Co 6:15-17; Eph 5:25-31.
The Holy Spirit moved Jesus and Paul to draw from Adam's words in Genesis, and emphasize the "oneness" of Christ and His bride which the Testator had clearly taught Adam and Eve. This "oneness" of "they two shall be one flesh," is precisely the same divine "oneness" Jesus emphasized in John 10:30-36; 14:8-11; and 17:21-23. This required a divine resurrection birth of the Seed of the woman, the Kinsman Redeemer, the testament Testator.
DEATH IS SWALLOWED UP IN VICTORY
"O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?" 1Co 15:54-56.
God told Adam that in the day he ate of the tree of knowledge of good and evil he would die, Gen 2:17;3:3. "Evil" was and is a part of that "death" and the lake of fire is its destiny. The Kinsman Redeemer must "die" in order to redeem Adam and his descendants, but the "last will and testament" provided for the Testator to be raised back to the divine life initially offered in "the tree of life" – an essential state of being with the intrinsic power of God above that of Satan whose power he must crush. This required the Kinsman Redeemer to be God, to be born as a human (the Seed of the woman), die for man's sins, then give that body a divine birth in His resurrection.
Adam and Eve had sinned, were now in a state of death, were headed for a death which they saw the animals die, and were also headed for hell and the second death in the lake of fire. God explained these things to them and did not leave them in darkness to be further exploited by Satan. The death of the animal sacrifices promised that very life offered in the tree of life, which is the same life promised through the Scriptures.
THE PROPHECY OF ENOCH
14 "Now Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied about these men also, saying, ‘Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of His saints,
15 "'To execute judgment on all, to convict all who are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have committed in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him,'" Jude 14-15.
The life promised in the tree of life would result in the state of being of which Enoch prophesied. This prophesy is the same as that of Zechariah, Zec 14:5. Malachi wrote of Christ as "the Sun of righteousness" (Mal 4:2), indicating a shining brilliance. Daniel wrote of the saints as shining like the stars, Dan 12:3.