Adam was the first man on earth and he was charged with two basic responsibilities. God commanded him to keep (guard) and dress (cultivate) the Garden of Eden. Here, guard comes before cultivate. A gardener is motivated to sow seeds in his garden only after ascertaining the security of his produce. But then, the task of security is delicate especially when an enemy is in disguise.
God knew that an enemy was lurking around in the earth hence the need to guard the garden. That enemy embodied the serpent, and this sly beast, encroached the garden. Perhaps, if Adam had been discretely sensitive to the security demands of the garden, he would have detected and rightly cast out the rebellious scorner who is mainly desperate to usurp man’s dominion.
Cast out the scorner, and contention shall go out: yea, strife and reproach shall cease (Proverbs 22:10). And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon… And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him (Revelation 12:7-9).
The enemy had been evicted from heaven and he descended to the earth. He goes about as a wounded, defeated, roaring, alpha-lion that has been stripped of dominance in his former territory and is in search of a free zone. So he parades with his skills before he pervades with his kill. We live in this world, but we must not embrace the crafty standards and illusions set by the god of this world.
Lusts are inordinate desires and it appeals to the flesh but distasteful to the spirit’s longings. In view of the parable of the sower (Matthew 13, Mark 4 and Luke 8), lusts are thorns, and are capable of suffocating and choking the seed sown in hearts that it becomes unfruitful. Hence we must guard our hearts (i.e. gardens) with ALL diligence for out of it comes (grows) the issues (produce) of life.
Thanks be to God that we are seated in heavenly places with Christ. Our affections are rightly set on things above and not on things on the earth. Our hearts can only be free from corruption by the agency of God’s Word. David underscored this precaution in Psalm 119:11, “Your word (seed) have I hid (kept, guard, secured) in my heart (garden) that I might not sin (breed thorns) against you.
Consequently, the realities on the inside will manifest as experiences on the outside. If Adam and Eve didn’t fall in their hearts, they couldn’t fall in the earth. The enemy sends his wiles and lusts so he can gain access into the heart. Our hearts hold the key to either bondage or freedom. For always, we are to stay spiritually alert with military precision as we constantly ward off the enticements and endorsements from this tricky invader.
– Demola Adeniran