In the Beginning: “Let us make man”
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. (Genesis 1:1 NKJV) After populating the new earth and skies with all living things God created man. Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” (Genesis 1:26-28 NKJV) These living things were presented to Adam who was given the privilege of naming them.
God sculpted man from the dust, breathed life into him and next provided a home. And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being. The LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden, and there He put the man whom He had formed. (Genesis 2:7-8 NKJV) Then the LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it. The garden contained trees that were both beautiful and edible. And God said, “See, I have given you every herb that yields seed which is on the face of all the earth, and every tree whose fruit yields seed; to you it shall be for food. “Also, to every beast of the earth, to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, in which there is life, I have given every green herb for food”; and it was so. (Genesis 1:29-30 NKJV) (Genesis 2:15 NKJV) And out of the ground the LORD God made every tree grow that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The tree of life was also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. (Genesis 2:9 NKJV) Man was granted free access to all but the tree of knowledge. And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; “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.” (Genesis 2:16-17 NKJV)
Absent among all the living creatures was a companion for Adam. And the LORD God said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.” Out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the air, and brought them to Adam to see what he would call them. And whatever Adam called each living creature, that was its name. So Adam gave names to all cattle, to the birds of the air, and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper comparable to him. And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its place. Then the rib which the LORD God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man. And Adam said: “This is now bone of my bones And flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of Man.” (Genesis 2:18-23 NKJV) And Adam called his wife’s name Eve, because she was the mother of all living. (Genesis 3:20 NKJV)
Having a home, food, a companion, responsibilities to fulfill and few restrictions, Adam set about the tasks to which God had entrusted to man. That included having dominion over the living creatures and the responsibility to tend and keep the garden. Adam and Eve lived in innocence in this idyllic setting. (Genesis 2:25) David praised God for man’s design. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well. (Psalms 139:14 NKJV) Later David’s son Solomon observed that God made man upright. (Ecclesiastes 7:29)
Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good. So the evening and the morning were the sixth day. (Genesis 1:31 NKJV)