The last time we discovered that Adam and Eve exchanged their garments of light (‘or, with the first letter Aleph), by taking the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for garments of skins (‘or, with the first letter Ajin). Adam and Eve chose to let themselves be ‘supported’ by the snake (the devil) instead of by God.
Reading part one of the aricle ‘What for cloak?’ you wondered whether Genesis 3:21 is a ‘legitimate’ text interpretation It also could be that we, Christians, not so familiar with the various Jewish ways of explanation why it sound foreign in our ears.
The Jews known four different methods of exegesis to explain the Scripture and is called PaRDeS. PaRDeS stands for:
• Pashat (פְּשָׁט) – “simple”; the literal meaning of the text.
• Remez (רֶמֶז) – “hints” or the allegorical sense; more than just the literal meaning of the text.
• Derash (דְּרַשׁ) – “inform”; the comparetive (midrasj) interpretation, as given by means of similar events.
• Sod (סוֹד) – “hidden”; you can only get this interpretation through a revelation.
Would it not be that the various writers of the New Testament (and perhaps Jesus himself) were known with one of these (or multiple) exegesis of Genesis 3:21?
Clothing of light
In 1 Corinthians 15 verse 51 and 52 Paul tells us a mystery. The mystery is that we will change in the twinkling of an eye at the last trump. If we continue reading we discover that our body will change from a corruptible to an incorruptible body. In other words, our ‘carnal’ body will be changed in a ‘spiritual’ body. But what does it mean that we change from ‘flesh’ to ‘spiritual’? In Philippians 3 verse 20 and 21 Paul speaks about a humiliated body that will change in a glorified body.
A glorified body wants to say that we will get a glorious body. Glory/glory is a characteristic of God. In both the Old and New Testament is the glory of God compared with light.
Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee.
And the city hath no need of the sun and the moon to shine upon it, for the glory of God did lighten it and her lamp thereof is the Lamb.
A glorified body would be a ‘garment/cloak of Light’. Perhaps, It is not surprising that several times in his letters, Paul speaks of children of light (Ephesians 5:8; 1 Thessalonians 5:5). But Jesus also spoke about children of the light. In John 12:36 He says: ‘While ye have the light, believes on the light, that ye may become sons of light.’
The question is why Jesus told the Jews (who were not in Him and not wanted to believe in the light) that they are the children of your father the devil (John 8:44). Would Jesus (and Paul) have been familiar with the Jewish exegesis of Genesis 3:21 about ‘garments of light and garments of skins’?
In addition, the thought came to me to what extent will our ‘clothes’ change from ‘garments of skins’ into ‘cloak of light, after our repentance (rebirth)? Of course Paul speaks in the verses about a glorified body in the future. But can we by now talk about the ‘already/not yet’ principle? Let me explain this based on the history of Moses.
In Exodus 34:29-35 we read:
And it came to pass, when Moses came down from mount Sinai with the two tables of the testimony in Moses’ hand, when he came down from the mount, that Moses knew not that the skin of his face shone by reason of his speaking with him. And when Aaron and all the children of Israel saw Moses, behold, the skin of his face shone; and they were afraid to come nigh him. And Moses called unto them; and Aaron and all the rulers of the congregation returned unto him: and Moses spoke to them. And afterward all the children of Israel came nigh: and he gave them in commandment all that Jehovah had spoken with him in mount Sinai. And when Moses had done speaking with them, he put a veil on his face. But when Moses went in before Jehovah to speak with him, he took the veil off, until he came out; and he came out, and spoke unto the children of Israel that which he was commanded. And the children of Israel saw the face of Moses, that the skin of Moses’ face shone; and Moses put the veil upon his face again, until he went in to speak with him.
In other words, since Moses had an intimate relation with YHWH (who was in a cloud of glory in the tabernacle of the congregation, Exodus 40:34), his face happen to shine. Through his intimate relation Moses began to reflect God’s glory. It may be a strange thought, but could this also happen to us today when we have an intimate relation with Jesus Christ, who is the Light of the world? Paul says in 1 Corinthians 6:19 that our body is a temple of the Holy Spirit. And with that, we can also say that by God’s Spirit, God’s glory is in us.
Shine like an angel
Is it not the case that we very often, in one way or another, recognize a Christian, without knowing him/her, to the radiance of his/her face. It seems as if that person ‘radiate’ something else than all the other people around.
Even though this is a strange thought, one thing I know for sure. When we increase our intimacy with YHWH, Jesus our Savior, then we will always radiate ‘Him’ more.. And it is up to you to believe whether this is literally or figure. But in Acts 6:15, we read about Stephen: “And all that sat in the council, fastening their eyes on him, saw his face as it had been the face of an angel.”!