Have Sex and Eat: The First Two Commands in Scripture

If I were to ask you to tell me the first commandment God gives in the Bible, I suspect many, if not most, of you would think of “Do not eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil.” We tend to think of the LORD’s commandments as a list of “Do nots” but the “don’t”s are always given in the context of the “do”s. In a sense, by focusing on the “do not”s, we have already accepted the premise of the Serpent’s question. Implicitly, the Serpent suggests, “Isn’t the LORD rather stingy and withholding?”.

Consider the 10 Commandments. Do worship the LORD God who brought you up out of slavery. Do rest on the Sabbath.

Or Jesus commandments. Do love the LORD your God and Do love your neighbor.

In Genesis 1, the first commandment that human beings are given is “Be fruitful and multiply.” In common parlance, have sex and make babies.

In Genesis 2, we tend to emphasize Genesis 2:17 over Genesis 2:16 which is precisely what the serpent does.

Perhaps, if we were a little more poetic in our translations we might see the connection.

And the LORD God commanded the man saying,

“Eat, Eat! From every tree in the Garden. But the tree in the middle of the garden, the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, don’t eat from that one for on the day you eat of it — Death! You will die.”

As one of my professors at Regent quipped, in Genesis 2, God is an Italian Mama feeding her bambinos. “Eat, eat!”11899874_719221108206165_8692773118386508753_n

So, why is it not good for man to be alone? There is too much food it is going to go to waste. He needs someone to enjoy and to enjoy it with. Unlike the pagan deities, YHWH doesn’t eat after all.

Remember, all the fruit bearing trees includes the tree of life.

So, why have we turned the Lord’s Supper, the appetizer to the Kingdom Banquet, into something so sparse and remote?

God is a party God. He likes a good BBQ. Just read the Torah.


Here are a few recommendations to help you get in the party mood and see the good news of the Kingdom. Follow the links below:

The Supper of the Lamb by Robert Farrar Capon

Kingdom, Grace, & Judgment by Robert Farrar Capon

Reading the Bible with the Damned by Bob Ekblad

Babette’s Feast (Film 1987: Danish with Subtitles)

Christ Plays in Ten Thousand Places by Eugene Peterson (and the Study Guide)


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