Sabbath in Paradise


“Adam, what are you doing?”

“I’m weaving these flowers together into a wreath, it will look pretty in your hair, and I…”

“But today is the seventh day, the Sabbath.” Eve sat next to Adam on the soft grass. “You are not supposed to be working.”

“We never work, Eve, this is paradise. We play and frolic and nap, and eat. Frolicking with you is my favorite though. Want to frolic now?” He reached for her in his playful way, but she pushed his hands aside.

“I know, Adam. The hardest part about doing nothing is knowing when you are done, but really, this is the Sabbath, and we are supposed to keep it holy.”

“What could be holier than frolicking right here on the riverbank? We could copy the lions again, I liked that game.”

Eve smiled, for she liked that game as well, but she wanted to make her point. “No dear heart, we must keep the Sabbath holy as we were instructed by the Great Creator, don’t you remember?” His gaze rested on her softly swelled chest instead of on her face, so she continued. “Firstly, we must stop all work.”

Gently she nudged his hands away. “Then we must stop all play as well, including the frolicking you cannot seem to get enough of. We must stop all things that are not in keeping with the Sabbath. So no more weaving.” She took the flowers he had woven together and gently laid them into the river, where they floated downstream. “We must cease all activity that is not something that we do only to give praise and honor to the Great Creator. We are supposed to celebrate the fact that all life comes from the Great Creator.”

“But I told you, we don’t work here. I mean, we play around at gardening, I really like making the plants grow and matching things up by color, and height, but that is not really work, even if I do get sweaty. In fact, I can’t recall anything that we do that we have to do, most of things we do we just want to do.” He reached for her again. “Like frolicking.”

“Like the flowers, and the fruits on the trees, and the little scurry things that crawl through the bushes, and the horse things and the lions that eat them and the little ones that have come from your womb after we frolic and the…”

“Yes, my love, all those things.” Eve put her finger on Adam’s lips to hush his prattle. “The Great Creator has given us all these things, and even the sun, which grows the grass and plants which the animals eat and gives us life when we eat the animals.” She reached up to where a vine crawled up a tree trunk and pluck a fat bunch of purple grapes, pulling a few off and sharing them with Adam. “Every thing that lives in this place lives because He wished it so.”

“So if we frolic and you bear another little one, isn’t that more life given us by the Great Creator?”

“You enjoy that so much, my man, you cannot seem to think of other things.” Eve smiled, for her man was after all, only a man. “But there is more to keeping the Sabbath holy.”

“Like what?”

“Well, we must give grateful thanks that the Creator is who He is, that he is generous in all things, that he is merciful and kind…”

“How do you know?”

“How do I know what?”

Adam looked serious for the first time. “How do you know that He is generous and kind and merciful and stuff?"

"Sure, He gave us all that we need to eat and drink, and He gave me you so I would not be lonely, and I would have someone to frolic with, which I really do appreciate, but if there is something else that He has not given me, how would I know it? I don’t know of anything else besides what I have, so how do I know there is not more?” Adam shook his head. “And how does giving us food and fun make Him merciful?”

“Just look around you at all this bounty.” Eve did not understand how he could question what was obvious.

“If you had to work for everything, only finding food from the earth after you had toiled for it, if you had to chase after the beasts in order to slay them by force to feed yourself, and our young ones, if you had to hide from beasts that wanted to eat you, or from the rain that falls from the clouds, would you not wish for life to be as it is now? Well, in His mercy, He has given us that life already.” Adam looked doubtful, so she added, “Things could be a lot worse.”

“I suppose. OK, so we give Him thanks for being wise and kind and stuff, can we frolic now?”

“Almost, Adam. First we must appreciate what he has done for us.”

“Isn’t that the same as giving Him thanks?”

“No, it is appreciating. Taking the time to savor, all things such as the little ones we have, and the food, and our health, and each other.

“That’s what I’ve been trying to do, appreciate you.” He reached for her again.

But I want to spend some time to…” Her words were lost as he covered her lips with his own. Each time he did that the warmth in her belly grew like wildfire after a lightning strike. Her thoughts turned to appreciating him in his turn, and they kept the Sabbath holy in the way Adam had suggested.

But her mind turned over something he had said, something about not knowing what else they might have been given since they had not been given it. She made a mental note to ask the wise serpent about that tomorrow, then gave herself over completely to frolicking with Adam.

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