Adam the Preacher

Genesis 2:16-17

“And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.'”

Luther’s Commentary
“This sermon of God to Adam would have been to him and to us all, his posterity, had we continued in the original innocence, a whole Bible as it were. And did we, or could we, possess that sermon now we should have no need of paper, ink and pens, nor of that infinite multitude of books, which we now require to teach us knowledge and wisdom. The whole contents of these books put together, could we grasp them in our minds, would not put us in possession of one-thousandth part of that wisdom, which Adam possessed in paradise. Could we attain to the sum of all the wisdom in all the world, this short sermon would swallow up and overflow the whole. It would show us in all plainness and fullness, as if painted on a tablet, that infinite goodness of God which created this nature of ours pure, holy and perfect; and it would show us with equal plainness all those impurities, calamities and sorrows, which have since overwhelmed us by the inbursting of sin.”
“This ‘tree of the knowledge of good and evil,’ therefore, or this place in which a number of trees like unto it were planted, would have been, as we have said, a church, where Adam and his posterity, had he and they continued in their innocency, would have assembled on the Sabbath day; and Adam, after refreshment derived from the ‘tree of life,’ would have preached God to those assembled, and would have praised him for the dominion which he had given them over all other creatures he had made. The 148th and 149th Psalms set forth a certain form of such praise and thanksgiving, where the sun, the moon, the stars, the fishes and the dragons are called upon to praise the Lord. But there is no one psalm so beautiful, but that any one of us might compose one far more excellent and more perfect, if we had been born of the seed of Adam in his state of original innocence.”
“Adam would have preached that highest of all blessings, that he had been created in and that his posterity bore the image and the similitude of God. He would have exhorted them all to live a holy life without sin, to till the garden in which God had placed them with all industry, to keep it with all diligence, and to guard with all caution against tasting the fruit of the ‘tree of the knowledge of good and evil.’ This external place, form, worship and preaching of the Word, man would most certainly have observed on the Sabbath. Afterwards he would have returned to his duties of laboring and guarding until the time appointed of God had been fulfilled, in which he ohould be translated without any death and with all sweetness to heaven…it is moreoever very profitable to consider from this text that God gave unto Adam a Word, a worship and a religion.”
Martin Luther. Luther on the Creation: A Critical and Devotional Commentary on Genesis [1-3] (Kindle Locations 3312-3348.

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