The garden of Eden was a physical and historical place, but it also symbolizes the motives and methods of God. Eden is an allegory of your life.
In Hebrew, garden of Eden means “enclosure of pleasure.” Within this enclosure there were three principal players: Adam, Eve, and Nachash. The Bible describes these three as co-existing inside the garden that God planted.
Your life is also the garden of God. You are the planting of the Lord, and the garden of Eden represents your present state upon planet earth. Your Adamic existence is an experience in sensuality (pleasure), ordained by the wisdom of God. Within this enclosure your life has three parts: Adam represents your physical body; Eve represents your spirit; and Nachash represents your fallen Adamic nature, the errant desires of the carnal mind. A garden enclosed is my Darling, my Perfect. Song of Solomon 4:12 (Fenton).
Your physical body is symbolized by Adam. Adam was formed from the dust of the ground. His body then became a container for the spirit that God breathed into him. By this, God became Adam’s Father twice, first in the natural, then in the spirit. In like fashion, your physical body is a container for the spirit that God placed inside you.
The physical body is perfectly described in the Greek by the word, soma. Soma means, “the body, both of men or animals, living or dead.” The body (soma) is the hardware of your life, and includes the five basic senses. And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, … And if thy right hand offend thee, cut it off, … for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body (soma) should be cast into hell.
The body (soma) originates the physical needs required to sustain its health. These include the need for food, water, warmth, and sleep. Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body (soma), what ye shall put on.
The soma is the home for your spirit during its earthly sojourn. Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body (soma), we are absent from the Lord. The soma has no life of its own. It is only a physical container for the spirit. The body (soma) without the spirit is dead. When the spirit leaves the body, the body dies. Thus the soma can be considered as being either alive or dead. He went to Pilate, and begged the body (soma) of Jesus. Then Pilate commanded the body (soma) to be delivered.
Your spirit is represented by Eve. Before Eve’s incarnation she dwelt inside Adam’s physical body. In like fashion, your spirit dwells inside your physical body. Also like Eve, your spirit is feminine. My soul shall make her boast in the LORD. This means that, like a woman, your spirit has the ability to reproduce life. God is the Father of every spirit, and every human being has a personal spirit which came out from God. It is this spirit that is capable of reproducing a Son of God.
The spirit is perfectly described in the Greek by the word, pneuma. Pneuma means, “the wind; breath; the spirit, which like the wind, is invisible, immaterial and powerful.” Pneuma is used for the spirit in man, the Holy Spirit, and the spirits of angels and demons. A pneuma can be either good or evil, but it is never both. When applied specifically to the spirit in a man, pneuma means, “the sentient element in man, that by which he perceives, reflects, feels, desires.” Pneuma is “the vital principal by which the body is animated; a simple essence, possessed of the power of knowing, desiring, deciding, and acting.”
Your spirit (pneuma) is the real “you.” It is your self-awareness, your conscience, and your living personality. You are a spirit being (pneuma) dwelling inside a physical body. For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit (pneuma) of man which is in him? Your spirit was sent from God and entered your body when you were conceived in your mother’s womb. When your body dies, this process is reversed. Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit (pneuma) shall return unto God who gave it.
Your spirit (pneuma), desires uprightness in your life. For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit (pneuma) in the gospel of his Son. The spirit cannot bring forth evil. It can be subjected to evil, and beguiled by evil, but of itself it can bring forth only Godliness. For the fruit of the Spirit (pneuma) is in all goodness and righteousness and truth. The pneuma (spirit) in man is sinless, and not corruptible. But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit (pneuma). Though your mind and body may sin, yet your spirit cannot. And if Christ be in you, the body (soma) is dead because of sin; but the Spirit (pneuma) is life because of righteousness. Your spirit subsists in purity, awaiting the quickening unto life. For we through the Spirit (pneuma) wait for the hope of righteousness by faith. Your spirit is expected to grow up, grow strong, and ultimately to seize control of your body. But I keep under my body (soma), and bring it into subjection.
Your fallen Adamic nature is represented by Nachash. Just as Nachash lived side-by-side with Adam and Eve in the garden, so also your carnal mind lives alongside your body and spirit. Nachash was Satanically energized as the betrayer of Eve. So also, your own carnal nature is energized by evil, and is the betrayer of your spirit. Nachash represents the corrupt, “fleshly” nature of mortal man. The flesh is well described in the Greek by the word, sarx. Sarx can mean, “flesh; the soft substance of the living body.” But sarx also means, “human nature; the earthly nature of man apart from divine influence; the animal nature.”
When Adam and Eve fell into sin, their human nature took on a new and devilish character. The sarx (flesh) was infused with Satanic evil. After that the sarx was defined as, “the seat of sin in man (but this is not the same thing as in the body); the lower and temporary element in the Christian.” Sarx is most often used in the New Testament to describe an acquired, sinister, and malignant nature. The sarx is your own carnality. Your carnal mind is the offspring of Satan through Nachash. This is Satan’s entrance into your life. Because the carnal mind (sarx) is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. Your own carnality is a conduit for Satanic evil. By this oppressive miscreant you are made subject to the vanities of earth. All of your sins have been originated by Satanic power, acting through your “flesh” (sarx), which is the carnal mind. I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh (sarx) the law of sin.
The sarx is a treacherous villain, a conspirator meeting with the Devil to plot the sins that are later expressed in a groveling body. The wicked sarx is a dumping ground for every Satanic notion that is looking for a home. As a diseased depository, it accepts every desire for filth and uses these unctions to bombard your body and spirit. Putting off the body of the sins of the flesh (sarx).
The sarx was created in Eden and has been placed in your life as the loyal opposition. It is the adversary of your spirit. Your spirit is expected to rise up and slay the sarx. The sarx is to be eradicated from your life. Make not provision for the flesh (sarx), to fulfil the lusts thereof. This is the maturing process for the spirit Son of God that is growing within you. By this competition this spirit warrior must distinguish himself as one of the greatest conquerors who will ever exist. And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh (sarx) with the affections and lusts. The trilateral consortium of Adam, Eve, and Nachash, represent the composition of every man or woman. Each human being is composed of body (soma), spirit (pneuma), and a licentious human nature (sarx).
Before the fall in Eden, these three dwelt together in peace, along with the visible presence of God. But after the fall, the relationship between body, spirit, and flesh were dramatically altered. Both Nachash and Adam had inseminated Eve. Eve was thus joined as one flesh with Nachash. What? know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh. And Eve was also joined unto one flesh with Adam. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. At the fall in Eden, Eve became welded into one flesh with both Adam and Nachash. This represents the fallen state of Adamic man today, for your spirit is now fused to a physical body and an evil carnal nature.
The insemination of Eve was the forbidden fruit, the very action that God had prohibited at the Tree of Good & Evil. When Nachash and Adam violated this prohibition, God set a curse on them both. For their rebellion and sin, God cursed Nachash (the flesh), and Adam (the body). These are the “curses of Eden.” The fall of the Adamic race was instigated by Nachash. Thus he received the first curse of God. As the serpent, the fleshly nature of man was cursed by God to become the lowly carnal mind. And the LORD God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field. The carnal mind of man is the lowest form of animal life on planet earth. Upon thy belly shalt thou go. Only man is capable of blasphemy, perversion, and depravity. Like Nachash, the sarx was invaded by Satan, and became the carnal mind. This carnal mind is of its father, the Devil. It is deluded with evil and enthralled with its own beauty. It is the father of lies, and a murderer from the beginning. Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness.
This Satanic adversary (Nachash, the sarx, the carnal mind) was then given power over your body (the dust). And dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life. To your fallen carnal nature, your body is but snake food, the fodder and playground of iniquity. Adam was made from the dust of the earth, and hence the second curse of God was directed to the ground, which represents the substance of the physical body. And unto Adam he said, … cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life.
After the fall, the physical body of man began to produce disease, aging, and death. Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee. This corrupted body requires constant effort to prolong its health, and in the end it will die. In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return. The fall of Adam in Eden was the plan of God all along. For though Adam was created as a man to “till the ground,” he was not actually set to this task until after the fall. Only after the fall was Adam finally sent forth from the garden to accomplish the objective for which he was created. Therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken.
Eve (the spirit) was made subservient to Adam (the body). Today your spirit is enslaved to the maintenance of your physical body and besieged by the constant cravings of the five senses. And thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee. Eve (the spirit) was also made subject to the torment of Nachash (the carnal mind). By the edict of God, the spirit and the carnal mind took up permanent positions as sworn enemies. Today your spirit and your carnal mind are locked in mortal combat, a battle to the death. Your spirit must ultimately eradicate the carnality within you. Through this struggle your spirit will eventually bring forth a Son of God, matured and strong. I will put enmity between you [the carnal mind] and the woman [the spirit], and between your offspring and her offspring; He [the spirit Son within you] shall bruise and tread your head under foot, and you [the carnal nature] will lie in wait and bruise His heel. Genesis 3:15 (Amplified).
The events of Eden produced the state of your existence today: you are a feminine spirit that is chained to the curses of God. You are Adam, Eve, and Nachash; soma, sarx, and pneuma; three travelers bonded in a struggle of life against death. The current condition of man is this contradictive mixture of sin, vanity, discord, shame, and sensuality, all joined to the promise of immortal strength.