[asa] Re: The Eden in Israel Proposition - Reconciling the story of creation with science

From: Bruce Paul <luke15twenty@yahoo.com>
Date: Wed Jun 06 2007 - 12:08:31 EDT

I'm trying to find a few apologists / thinkers review a book I’m just about to have published. I began a study of the Eden in Israel proposition while investigating the work and purpose of the Holy Spirit. Because "Living Water" is Scripture's principal metaphor for the Holy Spirit, I was going through every verse in the Bible referring to water, wells, rivers, and springs, and it soon became clear that the river in Eden is a type of the Holy Spirit. An interesting principle of scripture I've often meditated on is how God regularly visits certain places over and over again, such as the temple residing on the very location where Abraham took Isaac to be sacrificed. After working through my study, I became convinced that the first river from Eden mentioned in Genesis 2, was the same river mentioned in Ezekiel 47, and both of these were for-runners of the River of Life found in Revelation 22.
  
 I had come to believe these were all one in the same river because:
  
 1. All three of these rivers appear during principal transformational points of the earth throughout redemptive history.
  Eden's River at the beginning of creation(Gen 1-2).
  Ezekiel's river during the New Millennium (Eze 40-47)
  The River of Life when the New Jerusalem comes down from heaven (Rev 21-22).
 2. All three rivers were accompanied by a version of the Tree of Life
  Eden's River with the Tree of Life (Gen 2:9)
  Ezekiel's River has trees on either side of the river. The Ezekiel 47 passage records that there will be all kinds of trees for food, which ties Ezekiel's orchard together with Eden (Gen 2:9), but the trees will bear fruit every month and the leaves are for healing, which ties it together with the River of Life in (Rev 22:2).
  The River of Life has two Trees of Life on either side of the river (Rev 22:2)
 3. All three of these rivers have an incredibly vast distribution
  Eden's River turns into four other rivers that water the whole surface of the earth (Gen 2:6).
  Ezekiel's river flows down to the dead sea, but Zechariah 14 suggests that it will also flow down to the Mediterranean Sea (Zec 14:8)
  The River of Life will go out to all the nations (Rev 22:2)
 4. All three of these rivers have a remarkable source
  Eden's River flowed out of Eden (Gen 2:10).
  Ezekiel's river flows out of the altar outside the temple (Eze 47:1)
  The River of Life flows from God's thrown and from the Lamb (Rev 22:1)
  
 I realized there is a very logical conclusion in associating these three rivers together! If Eden's river flows from the same point these other two rivers come from, Eden had to have originally been in the region we now know as Israel. My mind started to race as I began to appreciate the principle implication of this hypothesis, that the very ground that saw the first sin and failure would become the very ground of redemption and restoration. Why else would Israel be the Promised Land if God didn't have an extraordinary plan in mind for this territory, and under premise of the Eden in Israel Proposition, He was winning humanity back on the very ground that saw man's original fall from grace.
  
 Invigorated by this glorious possibility, and equipped with a geology background that enabled me to proficient review maps of the region, I tried to understand how Eden's River could have acted as the source of the four other great rivers mentioned in the Genesis 2 account. But once the source of the first river was fixed, the pattern was obvious; all four rivers in the Eden narrative are coincidental to the Great Rift Fault. The Tigris and Euphrates flow directly out of the East Anatolian Fault (which is actually an extension of the Great Rift Valley), the Gihon (assuming that Josephus and the book of Jubilees are correct in suggesting the Nile is the Gihon) and the Pishon (assuming that Farouk El-Baz’s Kuwait river in Arabia is the Pishon) also have headwaters that are suspiciously coincidental to the Great Rift Valley.
 Tying this together with Genesis 2:6, “But a mist used to rise from the earth and water the whole surface of the ground,” it seems apparent that the water was flowing underground from the center of all these river headwaters from an area we now know as Israel. I’ve recently discovered that Dr A. Yahuda suggested the water from Eden flowed underground 70 years ago, but I believe I’m the first to put together this connection with the Great Rift Valley.
 Soteriology, Pneumatology, Eschatology, and even Hermeneutics all have wide-ranging implications effected by this Eden in Israel proposition, yet there's a theme that can be found weaving its narrative throughout all these fields of endeavor, tying them all together and affecting the very way we live - The message and mandate defining our inheritance within the Kingdom of God. The Eden in Israel proposition doesn’t contradict conservative evangelical Christian doctrine. Yet, many of the implications of this proposition are unconventional, and challenge many traditional concepts in scripture. The mysteries uncovered by this theory are, however, nothing less than astonishing, and provide a remarkable framework for understanding the message of God's Kingdom and His purposes with the land of Israel. I believe this work is only the beginning; inspiring many other works to follow, resolving mysteries that have confounded and separated the Church for thousands of
 years.
  
 This book is an honest endeavor from a Christian geologist’s perspective to reconcile many issues of science and the history of religion, together with a conservative evangelical perspective on the authority and inspiration of the scriptures. If you or anyone in your group would be interested in reviewing this 124 page book, let me know and I’ll send along a pdf copy.
  
 Kindest Regards
 Bruce Paul
bruce@faith-friends.com
       
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Received on Wed Jun 6 12:08:56 2007

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