A New Eden
"Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you" (Philippians 4:8-9).
I have heard this passage described as "a new Eden," a veritable paradise of God, and so it is. The old Eden was beautiful with all manner of fruits which were good for food and God was there; but our first parents forfeited their right to be there by their disobedience, and they were driven out of it, and the sword of the Cherubims flamed every way to guard the entrance and prevent any attempt on the part of the sinners to return.
But here is a new Eden opened up for us, and the entrance to it is the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ; by that cross the way has been opened wide to this paradise where everything is good, and we may roam amid its beauties and feast upon its glorious fruit — things true and honest and just and pure and lovely and of good report, things of virtue and worthy to be praised. What fruit, what blessing awaits us in this Eden! It is all Christ, and as we rejoice in His loveliness and He is our food and our souls live and roam amid the glories of His person, the God of peace will be there and we shall walk with Him and He with us. And the great Apostle, who knew and loved this paradise of God so well, had nothing to say to the saints beyond urging them to enter it; it is his final "finally." And what need we beyond it? "FINALLY, BRETHREN ... THINK ON THESE THINGS."
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