*Scripture verses covered in this section's commentary are noted in italics

Genesis 2:7-9 meaning

Verses covered in this passage:

  • Genesis 2:7
  • Genesis 2:8
  • Genesis 2:9

God makes man from the dust of the ground and he becomes a living being. Man is placed in a beautiful garden with food, the tree of life, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

God formed man from dust. God molded man like a potter molds clay. For instance, in the book of Job we see, Behold, I belong to God like you; I too have been formed out of the clay (Job 33:6).

But now, O LORD, You are our Father, We are the clay, and You our potter; And all of us are the work of Your hand (Isaiah 64:8). Then God breathed into man the breath of life, causing man to become alive. Man became a living being or soul.

The Scriptures tell us, ‘The first man, Adam, became a living person.’ But the last Adam—that is, Christ—is a life-giving Spirit (1 Corinthians 15:45). Although other living creatures possess life, only human life is linked to the breath of life given by God.

God specially prepared a garden in an area called Eden (commonly referred to as the Garden of Eden) and placed man in it. Eden was a place of delight and pleasure. It was a unique dwelling place furnished and adorned by nature. The stars of heaven formed its cathedral ceiling. The lights came on and turned off when they were supposed to, there was not a lock on a door. It truly was a paradise that provided Adam with everything he needed. It had beautiful trees that were good for food and it was a blessed place provided by God’s grace.

In Eden was the tree of life. Some say it was intended to be a sign and seal to Adam, assuring him of the continuance of life and happiness. The tree that gives life seems to be symbolic of the cross that Jesus was crucified (put to death) on. In Galatians we find, Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law, having become a curse for us—for it is written, “CURSED IS EVERYONE WHO HANGS ON A TREE”— (Galatians 3:13).

The tree is a reference to redemption. The law (which God would later give to Moses) brought a curse. By Jesus’s substitutionary death for us, He brings the promise of blessing to all who believe in Him. In the New Testament, it is realized that God’s blessings and salvation are for the the Gentiles (non-jews) as well. We see in Galatians, In order that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we would receive the promise of the Spirit through faith (Galatians 3:14). The tree of life is also symbolic of eternal life. In the book of Revelation we learn that God judges non-believers, those who reject God’s plan of salvation. After this, God creates a new paradise for those who do believe and overcome the false teachings of the world, He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, I will grant to eat of the tree of life which is in the Paradise of God (Revelation 2:7).

In the garden, there was also the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. God would soon make it clear to Adam and Eve that it was bad to eat of the tree and good if they did not. In the event that Adam would eat of this tree, he would gain knowledge by the experience of losing what was good and learning what was evil (wrong). This is seen in the grace of the New Covenant too. Believe and be saved, or believe not and be condemned (Mark 16:16). So, Adam had a choice, but it was a test of obedience.

Biblical Text

7 Then the Lord God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being. 8 The Lord God planted a garden toward the east, in Eden; and there He placed the man whom He had formed. 9 Out of the ground the Lord God caused to grow every tree that is pleasing to the sight and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

Check out our other commentaries:

  • Daniel 4:10-13 meaning

    Nebuchadnezzar recounts his dream.......
  • Numbers 10:29-32 meaning

    Numbers 10:29-32 contains the description of something that happened sometime before the Israelites departed Mount Sinai. It involved Moses trying to convince his brother-in-law Hobab......
  • Deuteronomy 22:28-29 meaning

    Moses gave the law designed to protect an unengaged virgin who may have been a victim of rape.......
  • Genesis 7:1-5 meaning

    God tells Noah to enter the ark. Further instructions are to take a male and female of every unclean creature and seven pairs of every......
  • Genesis 21:1-4 meaning

    God kept His promise; Abraham and Sarah conceive and have a son at the appointed time. Abraham names the boy Isaac and circumcises him at......