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"Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb through the middle of the street of the city; also, on either side of the river, the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit each month.  The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.  No longer will there be anything accursed, but the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and His servants will worship Him.  They will see His face, and His Name will be on their foreheads.  And night will be no more.  They will need no light of lamp or sun, for the Lord God will be their light, and they will reign forever and ever" (Revelation 22:1-5).
John, in the book of John, begins his gospel record in identical fashion to Genesis: "In the beginning...."  Furthermore, John's final revelation of Heaven sounds very similar to the first book of Genesis: a garden similar to Eden is described in the final chapter of the book of Revelation, where there is found the Tree of Life, a River of Life, Light, and God Himself, living with and reigning over His people.

But what is the connection between the two?

In the beginning, in Genesis, God dwelt with His people - Adam and Eve.  He walked with them, He talked with them, He lived with them in unhindered communion.  Adam and Eve rejoiced in God, until the day they sinned against Him.  Immediately upon their rebellion, they hid from God.  They felt afraid of Him.  They no longer desired His communion.
"But the Lord God called to the man and said, to him, 'Where are you?'  And he said, 'I heard the sound of You in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked, I hid myself'" (Genesis 3:9-10).
Shortly thereafter, God cursed Adam and Eve and all that He had made, designating it all for destruction because of the wickedness that had corrupted it.  Adam and Eve were banished from the Garden, never allowed to return... until Christ came.  This is why John begins his record the way he does:
"In the beginning was the Word....  All things were made through Him, and without Him was not any thing made that was made....  In Him was life, and the life was the light of men...." (John 1:1-4).
What is God doing in the beginning of John's gospel?  It sounds very much like Genesis.  Indeed, it is a re-Genesis - a new beginning!

The true Light, which gave life to Adam and Eve at the start - and, thus, to all mankind - had returned to dwell with man.  And this time He came to dwell among a cursed people who were afraid of Him from the beginning, so He became like them in appearance (things are much less scary that way).

Indeed, the very creator of all things came down to live with His creation in physical form.  This had not happened since God walked with Adam and Eve in the Garden before sin had been committed.  What was this to mean?  That Jesus Christ would bear the curse for humanity, and God would, thus, dwell with man once again, just as He did before sin was yet known in Adam's race!

Still, not one received Him:
"The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world.  He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, yet the world did not know Him.  He came to His own, and His own people did not receive Him" (John 1:9-11).
All humans - even His own people, Israel - rejected Him.  They hid from Him, as it were, just as Adam and Eve had done after they had sinned.

So it was that when Jesus appeared, all people - since all are offspring of Adam and Eve - hid from God and did not desire Him.  This shows the depravity of all people everywhere.  Powerless to receive God we are, for we all are rebels and sinners.

But still, God, in His mercy, came in human flesh to dwell among men, that He might re-create man and live among them as He did at first in the Garden of Eden.

And just as God created man out of the lifeless dust at the beginning, so God Himself would re-create dead sinners to new life in His Son!
"But to all who did receive Him, who believed in His Name, He gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God" (John 1:12-13).
Just as Adam and Eve did not create themselves, so the new man does not create himself either; instead, it is the will of God, not of man, that empowers re-generation in sinful man so that he may receive Him.  Apart from the empowerment of God, all humans are alike in their fear and terror of God.  All are equal in their hatred of His holiness and the spurning of His holy judgement.  Had the God-man not come to dwell among us and bear Adam's curse for us, we should have no hope of ever returning to the Garden of God, nor any desire.

But thanks be to God, from whom the Christ came, to ransom us back from death to life, from the curse to blessing, and from God-hating to God-loving.  It is for our joy and His glory that He did these wonderful, gracious things!

Praise the Lamb who re-creates dead sinners and gives them life eternal!  His incarnation we celebrate this Christmas, and His people anxiously await their return to God's Garden!  Come quickly, Lord Jesus!

"No more let sin and sorrow grow
Nor thorns infest the ground:
[Christ] comes to make His blessings flow
Far as the curse is found,
Far as the curse is found,
Far as the curse is found!" ("Joy To The World, Isaac Watts).