3 (Gen 3:20-21) And Adam called his wife’s name Eve; because she was the mother of all living. To Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.
Let’s look at the third passage. Here it says that the name Adam gave to Eve had meaning, right? This proves that after Adam was made, he had thought, and he understood many things. As to what he understood and how much he understood, we will not study or discuss them now, for they are not the crucial point of the third passage, which I will talk about. Where does the crucial point of the third passage lie? Let’s look at the verse “To Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.” If I did not bring up this verse and fellowship about it today, you might never be able to realize what connotation this word has. First, I will give a clue to you. You may stretch your imagination, picturing the garden of Eden: Adam and Eve live in it. When God comes to see them, they hide because they are naked. God cannot see them, so he calls to them. And they say, “We are naked and are afraid to see you.” Because they were naked and were afraid to see God, what did the LORD God do for them? The text says, “To Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.” Now do you know of what God made coats for them? God made coats of skins for them. That is to say, the coats God made for men were leather coats. They were the first coats God made for men. Nowadays, a leather coat is considered as an expensive coat, and not everyone can afford it. If someone asks you, “What were the first coats worn by the ancestors of mankind in the very beginning?”, you can tell him, “Leather coats.” If he asks, “Who made them?”, then you can tell him, “God made them!” Here lies the crucial point: The coats were made by God. Is this worth talking about? At the description I have just given, do you have a picture in your mind? You should have a broad outline of it! My purpose in speaking these words today is not for you to know what the first coats worn by mankind were. Then where does the crucial point of these words lie? The crucial point does not lie in the leather coats. The crucial point I want to talk about is how man should know God’s disposition and what God has and is that he expressed when doing this thing.
In the picture “To Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them,” whom do we see God stayed with Adam and Eve as? In the world where there were only two people, whom did God appear as? Did he appear as God? The brothers and sisters from Hong Kong, give your answer. (As their parent.) The brothers and sisters from South Korea, whom do you think God appeared as? (As the head of the family.) The brothers and sisters in Taiwan, give your answer. (As the family of Adam and Eve, as their dear one.) Some think that God appeared as the dear one of Adam and Eve; others say that God appeared as the head of the family; and still others say that he appeared as their parent. These are all very appropriate. But what do I want to say? God created these two people, and he regarded them as his companions, and he, as their only family, took care of their life and their food, clothing, shelter, and travel. Here, God appeared as the parent of Adam and Eve. In this thing God did, men cannot see God’s loftiness, cannot see God’s supremacy, and cannot see God’s mysteriousness and unfathomableness, much less see God’s wrath and majesty, but they only see God’s humbleness and God’s lovingkindness and see God’s concern for man and God’s responsibility and loving care for man. God treated Adam and Eve with the same attitude and in the same way as human parents are concerned about their children and also as human parents tenderly love, look after, and care for their children, true and real and visible and tangible. God did not stand in his lofty position but personally made the coats of skins for mankind and clothed them. Whether the coats were used to cover their shame or protect them against the cold, anyway, God did this thing in person and with his own hands, and it was not that God made the coats by a thought or by performing a sign to cover man’s body as people have imagined, but that he practically did a thing that mankind does not think he could do or should do. Although this thing was simple and men even think that it is not worth mentioning, it causes all those who follow God but have been full of vague imaginations about God to see God’s realness and God’s loveliness and see God’s faithfulness and God’s humbleness. And it causes those arrogant ones who consider themselves lofty and without equal in the world to be ashamed and bow their high-held heads before God’s realness and humbleness. Here, God’s realness and humbleness cause men all the more to see God’s loveliness, and by comparison, the “lofty” god, the “lovely” god, or the “omnipotent” god in men’s heart becomes so small and ugly and so weak as to be unable to withstand a single blow. When you read this word, when you hear this thing, will you despise God because God did such a thing? Some of you probably will, while some others, on the contrary, will think that God is real and God is lovely. It is God’s realness and loveliness that move them. The more they see the real aspect of God, the more they will feel the real existence of God’s love, realize the weightiness of God in man’s heart, and feel that God is beside man all the time.
Speaking of this, we should relate it to the present. Since God could in the beginning do tiny little things like this for the men created by him, and even do something people never dare to think about or expect, can he do such things on people of today? Some answer, “Yes!” Why? Because God’s substance is not performed, and God’s loveliness is not performed; God’s substance truly exists, and it is not added to him by others, much less does it change with time, place, and age. In the things done by God which are inconspicuous to man and which man considers very small, and even in a very small thing that man thinks God can never possibly do, God’s realness and God’s loveliness can be truly reflected. God is not hypocritical, and in his disposition and substance there is no pompousness, no pretense, no haughtiness, and no arrogance. He never boasts but with a faithful and truthful attitude, he has been taking good care of, showing concern for, watching over, and leading the man created by him. No matter how much people can realize it, how much they can feel it, and how much they can see it, God has been indeed doing such things. When you know about such substance of God, will it affect your love for God? Will it affect your fear of God? I hope that when you know about the real aspect of God, you will draw nearer to God and will more truly feel God’s love and God’s care for man, and at the same time you will hand over your heart to God and no longer have any suspicion or doubt about God. God has been doing every single thing silently for mankind and doing everything by his sincerity, by his faithfulness, and with his love. But as to all these done by him, he never has any hesitation or regret about them, never needs man to repay him with anything, and never hopes to get something from man. His only purpose in doing all these is that he can gain man’s true faith and love for him. That is all for the first topic!
Are these subjects helpful to you? How much help are they? (We have gained more understanding and knowledge of God’s love.) (Fellowshipping about them this way enables us to from now on better understand God’s words, understand what God felt and meant when he spoke the words, and understand the state of heart God had then.) After reading these words, does anyone all the more feel the real existence of God and feel that God’s existence is no longer empty or vague? After man has such a feeling, won’t he feel that God is right beside him? Now you may not feel that so obviously, or you may not be able to realize that. But one day when you in your heart truly have a deep feeling about God’s disposition and God’s substance and have a true knowledge of them, you will feel that God is right beside you, but your heart has never received God. This is true!
What do you feel about our fellowshipping in this way? Can you keep up? Do you feel very heavy when we fellowship about the topic of God’s work and God’s disposition in this way? How do you feel? (I feel it is good, and feel excited.) What do you feel good about? Why are you excited? (I feel as if I have come back to the garden of Eden and come back to God’s side.) In fact, the topic of God’s disposition is very strange to everyone, because what you have imagined about it, what you have read about it from books, or what you have heard about it from the fellowships at ordinary times makes you always feel that you are like the blind men trying to size up the elephant, only touching it with your hands but not seeing it with your eyes actually. “The touching of your hands” cannot at all give you a general outline of the knowledge of God, much less give you a clear concept of the knowledge of God; rather, it causes you to have more imaginations, so that you always fail to accurately define what God’s disposition is and what God’s substance is, and these imaginary and uncertain elements, on the contrary, cause you to always have many doubts in your heart. The things you cannot be certain about and yet you want to know always bring contradictions and conflicts in your heart, and sometimes they even cause disturbances in your heart, making you not know what to follow. When you want to pursue God, want to know God, and want to see him clearly but you always fail to get an answer, isn’t this a painful thing to you? Of course, this word only applies to those who want to pursue to fear God and want to pursue to satisfy God. To those who simply pay no attention to these things, it actually matters nothing. For they wish God’s realness and God’s existence were a legend or a dream. In that case, they could have their own way and could lord it over others and exalt themselves over all, and whatever evil things they do, they would not need to worry about any consequences, would not have to be punished, and would not have to bear any responsibility, and even those words God says about the wicked would not be fulfilled in them. This portion of people are not willing to know about God’s disposition, detest knowing about God, and detest knowing about anything related to God. They wish God did not exist. They are hostile to God. And they are the portion of people to be eliminated.