I first encountered T. Desmond Alexander at seminary, years ago, via his tome From Paradise to the Promised Land. It was then I first encountered the theory of “Eden as cosmic temple.” His work From Eden to the New Jerusalem features that same theme. It’s a theme that seems to fill Alexander with starry-eyed wonder.
His aim is to set the whole biblical story into a framework; a story people can understand and “see.”1 Alexander suggests a helpful framework for seeing Genesis 1-2 and Revelation 21-22 as bookends on the same story. Just as God originally dwelt on earth among men,2 so the end of the story has God returning to a new and perfect creation to dwell with man once again!3 I had never considered this parallel of “God with us” before. Rather, I had always focused on the old creation/new creation motif.