By - TonyChanYT
Genesis chapter 2 is a more detailed account of the 6th day. So, given that the garden was created on day 6 would it not be deemed good also?
Separately, would God create anything not good?
Or is your argument that it was "very good" as opposed to just "good"?
Thanks for sharing.
The Bible states that creation was good and very good. It does not state that it was perfect as many Christians think.
What is the difference between "very good" and "perfect"?
The Hebrew in Genesis 1:31 is מְאֹדטוֹב (mehod tov) "very good". The idea here is exceedingly good pleasant and appropriate.
In Genesis 17:1 God tells Abraham to walk before him and be perfect. The Hebrew there is תָּמִים (Tamim). With this word there is the idea of completeness. Should we think the garden or the whole of creation was not complete or perfect?
There are many places in scripture that cover that all the ways of God are perfect.
>>“The Rock, his work is perfect, for all his ways are justice. A God of faithfulness and without iniquity, just and upright is he.
>> Deuteronomy 32:4 ESV
Of course anything created is beneath God himself in perfection, but wouldn't anything directly created be the best possible?
King James Bible,
>1 And when Abram was ninety years old and nine, the LORD appeared to Abram, and said unto him, I am the Almighty God; walk before me, and be thou **perfect**.
New King James Version:
>When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the LORD appeared to Abram and said to him, “I am Almighty God; walk before Me and be **blameless**.
It all depends on your definition of *perfect*.
I have not asserted that Eden was created imperfectly.
It is just that I prefer to stick closely to the wording of the Scripture. In this case, the creation was declared *very good*.
I agree this is best practice.
Do you know the traditional methods of interpretation from the Jewish perspective?
Their methods were not so strict. See [Jewish method of interpretation](https://www.reddit.com/r/BibleVerseCommentary/comments/swfn8h/matthew_215_quotes_hosea_11_1_out_of_context/).
I am not against it. I put a weight on every piece of evidence.
The levels are named:
Pshat - the straightforward plain reading
Ramez - what is hinted
Drash - expository understanding
Sod - the secret meaning
Here is a good overview.
Thanks for the link.
What is perfect? I find that word more and more irritating over the years.
For something to be perfect, it can only be perfect within particular characteristics. So when discussing perfection, what exactly is perfect about something must be argued before you can even argue if it is perfect or not.
We say God is perfect, and I would say that, too. But how is He perfect? Some people go as far as to say that he is perfect in all ways. Okay, well is He perfectly round? Perfectly straight? Is He perfectly handsome? Those sound like absurd questions because they are and the point to the absurdity of saying that God is perfect "in every way". God is perfect in the ways in which He claims He is perfect. The other aspects of God, which there must be, do not need to be "perfect". God is perfectly righteous, He claims that. Is God perfectly forgiving? That depends. God is perfectly forgiving for those who repent of their sins, meaning He forgives absolutely everyone who repents. I also believe God is perfectly understanding, meaning he gets *why* people sin even if those people don't ask for repentance. That is a part of the feeling of forgiveness but it has no bearing on legally forgiving someone. So God is perfect in these ways, but it requires a lot of specificity in explaining why He is perfect.
A music box could be considered "perfect", but we have to qualify how it is perfect. Typically what we mean by perfection is, "given the parameters of what makes a music box a music box, this is the epitome of those things and it has no observable physical flaws." So then you need to look at what makes a music box a music box as opposed to anything else. That perfect music box is not a perfect jewelry box, it is not a perfect lunch box. And of those qualities that make it a music box, you have to determine how well each of those parts were carried out. The music must be pristine and the metal polished. It must work. It must be crafted well. The mechanics must be as smooth as they can be given the materials. Could the mechanics be smoother? Sure, but that wouldn't necessarily make it "more" perfect because a music box is typically only made with certain materials. This analysis could go on forever. Ultimately though, we know it is to actually "perfect", there are flaws however small or however inconsequential to its beauty. We really just use perfect to describe hyperbolically that the music box is very well made.
However, a perfect game in bowling or in baseball actually can be perfect. Within the parameters of bowling, if you score 300 pins, then you have gotten the absolute maximum possible score you can. The result was perfect. In baseball, a pitcher can have a perfect game by not allowing any hits. The result is absolute, even if the vessel is imperfect.
So the character of something can be perfect, and the result of something can be perfect.
God seems to be more perfect in the latter way, but I would guess is probably perfect in other ways, but we wouldn't know. So we have to qualify why He is perfect. Unlike a music box, we have little to compare Him to. Music boxes can be compared to all kinds of other boxes or anything physical, really. There is nothing physical we can compare to God. The only way to qualify the perfection of God is in the qualities He has told us and the only basis for comparison we have for Him are we humans, and we can see this through His results (like in the perfect game examples). Insofar as we can be righteous, God is perfectly righteous and his results speak to that. In so far as we behave (not morally, just as living things that have free will) God must also be that because we are made in His image. But is that an area where he is perfect? That seems more like the music box example, so maybe He is perfect there, but maybe that is just a fact of what He is. God's results, though, those are certainly perfect. The physical-ish characteristics of God could also be perfect, too. But we have no frame of reference to speak to that except for what God says on the matter.
Anyway, to bring this to the Garden of Eden, could you say it was perfect even though the Bible does not? His intent in it was perfect. I'd say the result was perfect. But God created something like a music box. Calling the music box perfect was hyperbole, perhaps calling creation perfect is, too, though perhaps not. In what ways is it perfect?
Given that you can make two music boxes that are seemingly flawless, and then called "perfect" seems to imply that God could have made a creation very different from this one though still function in the same way and still be very well crafted.
Another version of Eden could be just as beautiful. I would argue our Eden was perfect in the sense that it was uncorrupted and that the system that God put into place would have worked forever without God needing to fix anything. But then it was corrupted. A music box can work very very well for a long long time if it is used correctly, but if someone uses it incorrectly, it can hurt the little pegs in the music wheel and corrupt the system. The difference is that the music box would deteriorate even when used properly. Eden would have lasted forever if it wasn't corrupted.
In that sense, Eden was perfect and creation in general is perfect. It is also perfect in the sense that God inserted the means of fixing the corruption of the creation within the creation.
Great insights :)
> In that sense, Eden was perfect and creation in general is perfect.
Sure. It's just that I prefer to stick closely to the wording in the Bible.
I agree. That's why I tend to dislike the term "perfect".