I was reading Genesis the other day and stumbled across Genesis 2: 11, 12.
The garden of Eden had just been created and the surrounding areas were being described.
(10) Now there was a river issuing out of E'den to water the garden, and from there it began to be parted at it became, as it were, four heads. (11) The first one's name is Pi'shon; it is the one encircling the entire land of Hav'ilah, where there is gold. (12) And the gold of that land is good. There also are bdellium gum and onyx stone.
I found it interesting that gold was mentioned this early in the bible.
Gold has always represented material wealth and power. It usefulness in bibles times would of been limited to decoration and a store of wealth.
Why was it so notable that not only gold, but 'good' gold was described in Genesis 2? This should of been a time before greed or material wealth had even been conceived of. In my own personal view, I feel the storing of wealth for personal gain has limited our progress as a society. (Income disparity)
I've received a few explanations on this topic from friends, family and elders:
- Moses was describing the area as it was in his time. Material things such as gold, bdellium hum and onyx would make the area notable in that era.
Surely the materialistic nature of people would of been present in Moses day. Wouldn't wealth and materialism have no place so close to the perfection of Adam and Eve?
If he was just relating to common things of his day, do we then have to take the rest of his writings from the perspective of when they were written, not the time period they covered? Perhaps we should reinterpret the bible for the time we are living in, not taking it literally?
- Gold was God's institution and control of an economic system
If this is the case, then God enabled materialism by giving us a tool to make it more efficient. Gold is way easier to stockpile than livestock and produce.
- It doesn't matter that gold was mentioned in Genesis 2, you're over reacting.
Maybe. I'd just like to know why (in my opinion)the cause of wars and famine was mentioned before the Original Sin.
I think my next kingdom hall contribution will be in Gods currency of choice. Storing up riches in heaven, one 1/20oz gold coin at a time.
I'm looking forward to hearing everyones thoughts on this.