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    God in the garden – B’reshit

    “The Garden of Eden” by Thomas Cole, c.1828

    Genesis 2:8 says that the Lord God planted a garden.

    There were trees that were “pleasing to the sight” and trees that were “good for food”. In the middle of the garden was the tree of life, and “the tree of knowledge of good and evil”, two trees not found elsewhere (Ibn Ezra).

    Adam and Eve lived in the garden. In the garden God Himself could be heard.

    From the poetical point of view the garden was a major indication of the existence of God, not merely as a source of beauty, but as proof that the spirit of man should never despair.

    Small things grow, and even when one year’s growth is unsuccessful, a person should never lose hope.

    Sforno says the trees of life and moral knowledge warned man to be careful in his choice of physical and intellectual pleasures. The garden is a stage in man’s moral development. The garden that is the world is full of wonderful things; man must learn how to handle them.

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