The early dealings God had with the Children of Israel began to develop what we refer to today as the Biblical Worldview. When God said, “I am one God”, it shook the existing pagan world with its hopeless understanding of many gods that could never be known or pleased. When God said mankind was created in His image it raised the standard of human dignity. In the ancient pagan world, no other group of people had an understanding of the nature of humanity that was nearly as positive as the Hebraic veiw. It gave them a sense of dignity and significant identity.
But then it got better…God said, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it…” (Gen. 1:28). Not only were people created by God in his image, but the purpose of their existence was fixed by God. They were to be fruitful and rule over the earth. They were told to work six days a week. Each person was to tend their own garden and take care of their own sustenance and provision. After their own personal care was taken care of then they could steward the earth.
We know that since Adam was later told to dress and keep the garden in Genesis 2;15, that there was work to be done in that great, wonderful creation. In the original Hebrew this word for dress means literally “to work and to till”. Perhaps Adam tilled spots to grow certain things in greater abundance. Perhaps he trimmed or pruned plants to produce them in a greater quantity. Adam’s incentive was that it was a blessing to be fruitful and not unproductive. Also through his obedience Adam could experience the pure joy that comes from relationship with his Creator. He was invited to help manage what God had created and to help establish God’s order on the earth. He was assigned activities like naming the animals.
Many today look at work as a curse or a necessary evil instead of a wonderful gift from God. This is not a Biblical view. Man was created to be productive. Next God taught his children about land ownership….