Adam and Eve: Worship and Blessing

This story is part of the Adam and Eve unit. Story source: The Forgotten Books of Eden, edited by Rutherford H. Platt, Jr. (1926): The First Book of Adam and Eve 23-24-25.

Worship and Blessing


XXIII. Then Adam wept more and said, "O God, have mercy on me, so far as to take upon Thee, that which I will do." But God took His Word from Adam and Eve.

Then Adam and Eve stood on their feet, and Adam said to Eve "Gird thyself, and I also will gird myself." And she girded herself, as Adam told her.

Then Adam and Eve took stones and placed them in the shape of an altar, and they took leaves from the trees outside the garden, with which they wiped, from the face of the rock, the blood they had spilled. But that which had dropped on the sand, they took together with the dust wherewith it was mingled and offered it upon the altar as an offering unto God.

Then Adam and Eve stood under the altar and wept, thus entreating God, "Forgive us our trespass 1 and our sin, and look upon us with Thine eye of mercy. For when we were in the garden our praises and our hymns went up before Thee without ceasing. But when we came into this strange land, pure praise was no longer ours, nor righteous prayer, nor understanding hearts, nor sweet thoughts, nor just counsels, nor long discernment, nor upright feelings, neither is our bright nature left us. But our body is changed from the similitude in which it was at first, when we were created. Yet now look upon our blood which is offered upon these stones, and accept it at our hands, like the praise we used to sing unto Thee at first, when in the garden."

And Adam began to make more requests unto God.

XXIV. Then the merciful God, good and lover of men, looked upon Adam and Eve, and upon their blood, which they had held up as an offering unto Him without an order from Him for so doing. But He wondered at them and accepted their offerings.

And God sent from His presence a bright fire, that consumed their offering. He smelt the sweet savour of their offering, and showed them mercy.

Then came the Word of God to Adam, and said unto him, "O Adam, as thou hast shed thy blood, so will I shed My own blood when I become flesh of thy seed, and as thou didst die, O Adam, so also will I die. And as thou didst build an altar, so also will I make for thee an altar on the earth, and as thou didst offer thy blood upon it, so also will I offer My blood upon an altar on the earth. And as thou didst sue for forgiveness through that blood, so also will I make My blood forgiveness of sins, and blot out transgressions in it. And now, behold, I have accepted thy offering, O Adam, but the days of the covenant, wherein I have bound thee, are not fulfilled. When they are fulfilled, then will I bring thee back into the garden. Now, therefore, strengthen thy heart, and when sorrow comes upon thee, make Me an offering, and I will be favourable to thee."

XXV. BUT God knew that Adam had in his thoughts, that he should often kill himself and make an offering to Him of his blood. Therefore did He say unto him, "O Adam, do not again kill thyself as thou didst, by throwing thyself down from that mountain."

But Adam said unto God, "It was in my mind to put an end to myself at once, for having transgressed Thy commandments, and for my having come out of the beautiful garden, and for the bright light of which Thou hast deprived me, and for the praises which poured forth from my mouth without ceasing, and for the light that covered me. Yet of Thy goodness, O God, do not away with me altogether, but be favourable to me every time I die, and bring me to life. And thereby it will be made known that Thou art a merciful God, who willest not that one should perish who lovest not that one should fall and who dost not condemn any one cruelly, badly, and by whole destruction."

Then Adam remained silent. And the Word of God came unto him, and blessed him, and comforted him, and covenanted with him, that He would save him at the end of the days determined upon him. This, then, was the first offering Adam made unto God, and so it became his custom to do.

(800 words)

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