After Paradise: The Curse of Scarcity

Genesis 3:17 And to Adam he said, “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife and have eaten of the tree of which I commanded you, ‘You shall not eat of it,’ cursed is the ground because of you; in pain you shall eat of it all the days of your life; 18 thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you; and you shall eat the plants of the field. 19 By the sweat of your face you shall eat bread, till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for you are dust, and to dust you shall return.”

Every action has a reaction. It has a consequence. The theological principle here is God’s justice: He righteously gives what is due- the consequence for man’s misbehavior is scarcity.

This curse is universal. Everywhere fallen man resides, his surroundings lie on top of scarcity. In other words, poverty is the default position of the earth.

Because of the fall, even the systems that govern on the earth that fights scarcity has also fallen. These systems, left alone to men, produce more scarcity and even greater problems. Fallen systems come in the form of ideas and beliefs inside the human mind, that are alienated from the Creator of the Garden.

In a scarce world, the “goods” are scarce, and the “poor” are rampant. When God created the universe, everything was good, but after the fall, the “goods”, beyond grace, are disappearing and degrading.

That’s why goods have a price, because they are scarce. When a “good” has a price of zero, the demand will rise higher. Of course, when an item is not “good”, no one will demand to buy it even in a zero price (or free). The higher the value of those goods, the higher the price that is needed in exchange of them.

Because of scarcity, there is a price. Price is something you need to pay in exchange of something. It is a “good” your produce in order to gain another “good.” You trade goods. Even when someone gives something that is free, like a free lunch or free gift, that person still needs to pay for the given gift.

There are some goods that are free, like the air we breath. But air is no longer free in an environment that is scarce, e.g. in the outer space, on top of Mount Everest, or under the ocean. But most goods or resources of the earth are scarce most of the time.

The Garden of Zero Cost

Before the fall, man was an in environment of total abundance and presence of God. He had everything that he needs- God Himself.

He enjoyed a life that was not under time pressure since the ground yielded all he needed and therefore there were no scarcity. Since there was no scarcity, everything he did was at zero price. He did not have to worry what trade offs he would make, or sacrifices he would take in order to enjoy a certain good.

After the fall, man went from a zero cost environment to a world that has greater costs, a world from abundance to scarcity. Meaning, before man would enjoy certain goods, he must trade off a greater amount of himself.

Man’s rebellion brought cosmic consequences that made his economics worse than it was in the Garden.

Scarcity demands a “Garden Economics”

Since death, bondage in a cycle (“dust to dust”) and scarcity are the inescapable consequences of the fall, man suffered from these environments of “falleness.” (Romans 8:19-22)

Man was supposed to receive God’s training and wisdom in the Garden and spread it across the globe (Genesis 1:26) and defeat scarcity, but because of sin and rebellion, man was banished from the Training Ground of God towards a world that has been cut off from His presence (Genesis 3:23). Economic systems, then, have fallen and became a curse. The solution is to go back to the Garden Mindset, the Original Economics that the Programmer has installed in the system of the universe.

Bad Economics and the Solution

Bad economics and management are therefore a result of the fall. Banishment from the Garden and from the presence of God led men to form government, schools and thoughts that are hostile against His Will (Genesis 3 to Revelation 20).

The tree of life was guarded so that man will not partake of it’s power, lest death and curse will be forever in the earth. Man was not allowed to receive its grace of eternal life without cost (since scarcity is now governing the earth).

Instead, God separated man from the tree of life and led him to world of consequences of his rebellion. But He had a rescue plan.

God who was rich in grace and mercy (Ephesians 2:4), brought the Tree of Life back to the earth. He is the I am (John 14:6). He Himself took a robe of flesh and came down to rescue man from the land of scarcity and back to the Paradise of abundance and presence of God. Through Him, the scarce world have a hope of becoming a paradise again (Revelation 21). Man was thrown out of the paradise, but paradise was sent back to man (John 17:3).

He sent Himself through the Law, and these Words became a Man.

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