Abad is a Hebrew word with a meaning of cultivating as in the labor of working land, tilling the soil; plowing. It means to cause to work, to make fatigued, to make weary. It also means to serve as a slave; to be made to serve; to be made to worship or honored, to cause to worship. This service can be directed toward things, people or God. When speaking of slaves it means to compel or impress into service. If it is for God it will not seem like service it will be an exhilarating experience not seeming like bondage at all. This is when our free will compels us to become “bond slaves” to Christ; we stay because our life is so good we cannot imagine leaving His work.
This is why Adam was placed in the Garden of Eden to be about his fathers work as a bond slave. He was placed there to live in freedom within the good life of plenty. Now let’s look at where we derived the word “keep” from: It was translated from the Hebrew word Shamar meaning to hedge around something (as with thorns); to keep, to guard. In Ecc 12:3 it is referring to a house. It means as a watchman, at time this watchman is a prophet. It means to protect, to abstain oneself, to observe. This is also applied to Gods commands and the Sabbath. It means to regard, to attend, to take heed, beware, revere. Ultimately it means to exercise “great care” as the keeper. (We will see this employed when Adam was escorted beyond the gates of Eden by the Cherubim in a few days.)
So let’s put a bow on this today. God put Adam in the garden so that he would be His bondservant exercising “great care” as the keeper of everything. His service was directed toward things, people and God in order that He might lead all things toward “the way of Zoe life”.
In the devotion I read to start my day (you can go to tabs at top of page click on TGIF to read this devotion) Os was speaking of Josiah. What a great example of how a man was perfectly placed within in a situation by God in order to direct everyone’s attention toward “the way”. In the New Testament Paul uses the “The Way” to describe the gospel. We know that Christ is “the way” back through the gates into Eden.
With all this being said…BIG finish here. Observe yourself and your environment. God has planted you to beware of all that is going on in your land. Take heed to protect it there are things you will have to abstain from in order to give “great care” as the keeper of your garden. You will have to work it, till it and it may make you fatigued at times but keep it up you will be exhilarated and it will not seem like bondage at all. Remember the thorn of crowns placed on Christ’s head. Let that remind us to protect our thoughts and life by faith so that we can see “the way” with clarity.
My love to each of you and a prayer that you not utilize your own strength to do this task, but rely on the super God places on your natural enabling you to do ALL things through Him.