Life to Subdue and Have Dominion


It was a great time at Alife today. God was in the house and the family was hungry, willing, and teachable. I believe the church is in a new season of life. Get ready for the fruitfulness of God. This is His season to shine! God sees things before we do.

Genesis 1:1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2 The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.

I believe that Genesis chapter 1 is an account of creation from a covenant perspective of God. It is not a chapter detailing the facts of the creation of all things, but covenantal realities of God’s view of the earth, His creative power to deal with all things, and His purpose for man in His plan. God looked at a situation of need and began to bring order, fullness, and light. His ultimate climax was with the creation of mankind in His likeness and His image.

Genesis 1:26 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” 27 So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 28 Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”

I don’t know if anything existed prior to these verses. It is none of my business. All I know is that when the situation needed help, God did not just create, He was intimately committed to the situation. He made man in the likeness and image of Himself in the form of man and woman and they were given dominion over all the works of His hands. Man was not only to be fruitful, multiply and to fill the earth, he was to subdue and have dominion. To subdue and have dominion would mean that things that are out of order could be put in order and kept in order. It was not a matter of controlling it, but of giving it proper liberty. The earth needed fullness and abundance. To subdue would be to take something that is empty and cause it to be full. Dominion is to keep it going and growing in its fullness. If it is dark, to subdue is to turn the light on. Dominion would be to sustain and expand the light. Human beings were not just created to be fruitful, multiply and fill. Animals can be fruitful, multiply and fill, but only man was destined to subdue and bring dominion to the world. The world of animals never changes. It is the same as it has always been, but God’s governing agents in the earth were not just natural beings. They were spiritual beings of spirt, soul, and body to fill the earth with the glory of God.

In Genesis chapter two we see that God formed man from the dust of the earth. I believe that this is an account from the perspective or vantage point of humanity. What did it look like in the history of men and God? Chapter two doesn’t chronologically follow chapter one in history. It is a different perspective. One is from God’s vantage point and the other is from man’s. God looks and speaks, man experiences the effects of God speaking. God touches men and gives life to them. God saw a fruitful earth and He saw Adam and an Eve as the key to bringing heavenly things into an earthly world. God blessed what He saw. Man saw barrenness and dust, but God planted a garden in the East and put man there. Then man saw and abundance of trees, an abundance of life. He saw paradise. He saw God. He didn’t see Eve. Something inside of him said, you need an Eve. He didn’t know it, but what was inside of him was Eve. There was a need for a relationship of vulnerability, transparency, trust and partnership in all things. He was in this paradise relationship with God, but he needed to be able to expand that relationship to others. He didn’t need a pet, a servant, or a slave. He needed a co-reigning partner. There were four rivers and they flowed out of the garden to the barren fields of the world. God had a plan that was greater than the garden. His plan was to take the life of the garden to the barren places of the world. His plan included the life-giving attributes of subduing and dominion.

I am almost 62 years old, I haven’t been around long enough to have been in the garden of Eden, but I have been in the barrenness of the earth. I remember when He touched me, laid His hand upon me, breathing His life in me, and established a place in the earth where I could get to know Him. He commanded me to eat ­– He commanded me to live! I know what it is to need God, to know God, and to live with Him. God wants me to become like Him. He wants me to know a relationship of vulnerability, transparency, trust and partnership with others in all things. I am in a paradise relationship with God, but I need to be able to expand that relationship to others. I don’t need a pet, a servant, or a slave. I need to understand the truth of being a member in the body of Christ – a co-reigning partner with co-reigning members in partnership with God in all things.

In the garden man was to have a relationship with God where he could be sent forth in a life of being fruitful, multiplying, filling, subduing and having dominion. In the garden man experienced an administration of God’s influence where he could eat of all good things and of the tree of life for eternity, but man chose a tree of information instead of intimacy. He chose the tree of the knowledge of good and the knowledge of evil. We need life, more than we need knowledge. We need one another more than we need the power to judge one another. We need to be people of mercy and grace for a destiny of giving mercy and reigning by grace in all things.


Ted J. Hanson

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About ted4you

Ted J. Hanson is the author of several Christian books intended to equip and raise up strong believers in Christ. He leads a training school known as Christ Life Training ( and ministers globally through House of Bread Ministry ( Ted travels to various places throughout the U.S. as well as other countries. He is a dynamic preacher/teacher who has a heart to share, uncompromisingly, the Word of God and the Lordship of Jesus Christ. He holds a bachelor of theology and masters of biblical studies through Christian International Ministries Network and is ordained through Abundant Life Ministries and House of Bread Ministry. He has served to plant and establish many ministries.
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One Response to Life to Subdue and Have Dominion

  1. Gary and Marilyn Stuart says:

    Once more, you have brought life to dead areas. The issues of your heart are like those four rivers of life from the Garden. You bring a great loving disturbance to the hearts and the heads of those listening to challenge our whole being to reach farther in the Spirit of Grace. Really looking forward to your week here in the Kootenays. So blessed to be in relationship with you and the A Life family.
    Gary and Marilyn

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