13 From Noah Back to Paradise
Kuyper starts by again justifying why he started with the Noahic covenant. It has been alluded to by others but the full appreciation of it has been neglected.
Common grace began after the fall, but underwent a change after the flood.
In Paradise we read of a threat (“you shall surely die”) that did not occur - at least not in the way Adam and Eve understood it. Adam had a “stay of execution”: it was “a very powerful act of common grace”(121). If Adam had died there would be no human race:
“The total and direct outworking of sin, had it not been arrested, would have destroyed the entire human race with a sin- gle death sentence.” (121)
Kuyper then justifies staying close to the Scriptures. He briefly discusses the Ethicals, Schliermacher and the mechanical use of the Bible as all being flawed approaches. They separated form and content.
Kuyper maintains that :
“we must maintain and prove our right to take the words as literally as they stand in Genesis 1–5, to depend on the facts told us in those words, to draw our inferences from those facts and words, and thus to come to the conclusion that not simply for our imagination and not merely in appearance, but in reality and in truth, the origin of things transpired precisely in the way we are told in these opening chapters of Holy Scripture.” (126)