“The Spirit of the LORD God is upon me, because the LORD has anointed me to bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and freedom to prisoners; . . .” Isaiah 61:1 (and Luke 4:18 with modifications) NASB
Sent – The first Adam was sent out. So was the second Adam. In fact, Yeshua’s citation of Isaiah 61:1, even in its altered form in Luke, uses the same Hebrew verb, shalah, found in Genesis 3:23. Do you suppose that is a linguistic accident? Do you think that sending Adam from the Garden is in any way connected to sending the Deliverer into the world? Can the motif of Adam’s expulsion help us understand the kenosis of the Christ?
Why is Adam sent from the Garden? The text tells us that he is expelled because of the possibility of eating of the Tree of Life and living le-olam (usually translated “forever”). What this means and why it is a threat is not explained. olam is itself a mysterious word. While it usually means some sort of indefinite continuance (but not necessarily some kind of existence “outside” of time), there are many occasions where the word refers to the past, not the future. This is further complicated by the fact that olam is never used by itself (independently). It is always used in connection with some preposition (as it is here with the preposition le) or as an adverb or a modifier of a noun. This is how the word is connected to later Jewish expressions like olam habba’ (the world to come). Why was Adam’s eating a threat? Actually, we don’t know. Adam lives a very long time even without eating, but how he might have been a threat by eating is simply not clear. All we know is that he was sent out. God determined that sending him out was the way to fulfill God’s planned redemption. And that is the precursor to sending out someone else. The goal is the same – the redemption of the world. But the sending is different. In the case of the second Adam, God does not expel. The second Adam volunteers to go.
Nevertheless, He is still sent.
This suggests that being sent is not entirely punishment. There is divine purpose in being sent, even for the first Adam. What must be accomplished cannot be accomplished if the first Adam remains in the Garden. What must be transformed is the motivation for being sent, not the sending itself. Until the second Adam relinquishes His right to remain in the Garden, salvation cannot come to the earth. But when He empties Himself of that right, He goes out just as the first Adam went out – empty-handed. He is sent out just as the first Adam was sent out – with the directive to take dominion, to rule, to be fruitful, to restore God’s creation to its proper order. The first Adam will now be required to fulfill this directive with the sweat of his brow in a world of ‘atsav (sorrow), but he is still required to serve (‘avad) the earth. The second Adam will face exactly the same circumstances. He too will find sorrow. He too will serve the earth. He too will be tasked with bringing God’s order to a world in chaos. The consequences of the choice of the first Adam will be foisted upon the second Adam. But the second Adam will accept this role voluntarily. He willingly leaves the Garden.
It seems to me that most of us are doing everything we can to get back into the Garden. It seems to me that we are still fighting God’s plan of shalah. We have not yet determined to volunteer to leave. So we resist the direction of the second Adam. We think it isn’t fair that we must suffer and toil and strain to bring about the purposes of God. We are still standing with the first Adam, head down in mourning as we are told to go out, rather than striding into the chaos with the second Adam, looking toward the glory of bringing God’s will to earth as it is in heaven.
Topical Index: send out, shalah, second Adam, kenosis, Isaiah 61:1, Philippians 2:7
 The Greek word kenosis is found in Philippians 2:6-8 (“emptied”) and is the theological expression of Yeshua’s voluntary renunciation of His divinity in the incarnation.