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Remember that in the very beginning, when man had been created in the image and likeness of his Father, God, and had been given dominion over all living creatures, God specified what he should eat. This is what God said to man: “Behold, I have given you every herb yielding seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for food: and to every beast of the earth, and to every bird of the heavens, and to everything that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for food: and it was so. And God saw everything that he had made, and, behold, it was very good.”
According to the Scriptures a nonflesh diet was God’s original plan for both man and beast. Only growing plants and their fruit and the fruit of trees were to be eaten by man and beast. However there was one tree the fruit of which Adam man was instructed not to eat. This tree was the tree of knowledge of good and evil. But Adam man was later tempted by an idea in his own mind to believe that he knew better than God what he should eat.
Since God is infinite in His potentialities, His creation also (animals, plants, water, chemical elements, and so on) must have infinite potentialities, and since the qualities of things available to man are practically unlimited man may easily turn them to adverse and destructive as well as constructive uses. The possibility o£ man’s wrong use of things is well illustrated by the story of the tree of knowledge of good and evil in Genesis. God had forbidden Adam to eat the fruit of this tree. So long as Adam did not eat of this tree he was able to enjoy the beautiful and harmonious things that God had provided for him in their pristine goodness; but after he ate of this tree his clear perception of Truth was blurred and to him life presented an adverse aspect. Where he had found only good heretofore he now found evil also, because he had introduced it into his life. Out of the infinite possibilities God had provided, man created a state of mind that was not compatible with the Garden of Eden consciousness, and it rendered him no longer fit to live in the perfect state.
Since God’s Garden of Eden was composed only of good, it was not possible for Adam and Eve to remain in it while they believed in both good and evil. But even after they had left the garden God did not forget them or cease loving them. God’s infinite love withholds nothing from His children, to whom He has given the power to create by their words. They are free to use His gifts wisely or unwisely. They are permitted to eat the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil and also to eat flesh, which was not included in the orginal menu God gave man.
While a flesh diet was not included in God’s original plan, neither was a mental diet of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil included in His plan. God shows His unselfish love for man by giving him freedom to choose and use any of the possibilities that the infinite scope of His being affords, even though what he does may prove to be harmful temporarily to himself. Man may choose unwisely, but God’s love will eventually bring him back into His fold.
Adam man chose the hard way of learning how to use God’s goodness, the way of experimentation. By this way Adam was forced to earn his bread by the sweat of his brow.
No matter how many mistakes man makes, God still loves him and sees him in spirit and in truth as His perfect child, whom He created in His own image and likeness, and who is potentially able to make manifest the Christ perfection and to dwell again in the beautiful garden. Then “he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes . . . And righteousness shall be the girdle of his waist, and faithfulness the girdle of his loins. And the wolf shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fat-ling together; and a little child shall lead them. . . . and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. . . . They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain.”
Man will someday realize that he can demonstrate his dominion over the animals by his wise supervision of them, which will help them to be of greater service to God, to one another, and to men. Then man will not destroy them for food.
God’s loving co-operation permits us an opportunity to improve ourselves by degrees, a little each day if we desire. In this way we are able to share His omnipresent blessings to the extent that we are willing to work with Him toward His perfect plan for us. All things are prepared for His children, but we His children must be willing to cooperate with Him voluntarily in re-establishing His perfect garden upon the earth.
Each day I am privileged to become a little more loving and to manifest a little more divinity in my being, if I am willing to do so. To the extent that I appreciate and live up to the Son-of-God standard I shall be able to enjoy the riches of my Father’s inheritance.
SUGGESTIONS FOR DAILY MEDITATION
SUNDAY: I am obedient to the wise and loving will of my Father, God.
MONDAY: The will of the Spirit, not the will of the flesh, is being done in me.
TUESDAY: The creative powers of the word that God has given me are being directed according to His wise plans.
WEDNESDAY: “My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to accomplish his work.”
THURSDAY: My eye is single, beholding God’s good creation as being everywhere present.
FRIDAY: Only the good is real in my world, because I trust only in His good creation.
SATURDAY: I rejoice because God has bountifully blessed me with His love and spiritual substance.