The Septuagint uses the word Paradise when speaking of the Garden of Eden, in which the Lord placed Adam and Eve. This famous garden is indeed commonly known by the name of "the terrestrial paradise," and there is hardly any part of the world in which it has not been sought. See EDEN.
In the New Testament, "paradise" is put, in allusion to the paradise of Eden, for the place where the souls of the blessed enjoy happiness. Thus our Savior tells the penitent thief on the cross, "To-day shalt thou be with me in paradise;" that is, in the state of the blessed, Lu 23:43. Paul speaking of himself in the third person, says, "I knew a man that was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter," 2Co 12:4. And in Re 2:7; 22:14, the natural features of the scene where innocence and bliss were lost, are used to depict the world where these are restored perfectly and forever.
a Persian word (pardes), properly meaning a "pleasure-ground" or "park" or "king's garden." (See Eden.) It came in course of time to be used as a name for the world of happiness and rest hereafter (Lu 23:43; 2Co 12:4; Re 2:7). For "garden" in Ge 2:8 the LXX. has "paradise."
(See EDEN.) From Sanskrit paradesa, "a foreign ornamental garden" attached to a mansion (Ne 2:8; Ec 2:5 "gardens," Song 4:13 "orchard," pardes). An earthly paradise can never make up for losing a heavenly paradise (Re 2:7; 22:1-2,14). Compare the Holy Land turned from a garden of Eden into a wilderness, with Israel's wilderness made like Eden the garden of Jehovah (Nu 24:6; Joe 2:3; Isa 51:3; Eze 36:35; contrast Eze 28:13). Paradise is the blessed resting place with Jesus to which the penitent thief's soul was received until the resurrection of the body (Lu 23:43).
Paul in a trance was caught up even to the third heaven, into paradise (2Co 12:2,4). In Eden Adam and Eve lived solitary, exhibiting the perfection of the individual. The heavenly home shall be not merely a garden, but a city, the perfect communion of saints (Heb 12:22; Revelation 21; 22). Earthly cities, Nineveh, Babylon, and Thebes, rested on mere force; Athens and Corinth on intellect, art, and refinement, divorced from morality; Tyre on gain; even Jerusalem on religious privileges more than on love, truth, righteousness, and holiness of heart before God. But the coming city shall combine all that was excellent of the first Eden, with the perfect polity that rests on Christ the chief corner stone, in which symmetry, grace, power, and the beauty of holiness shall shine for ever.
A Persian word for 'park' or 'garden' (see Orchard), used in later Jewish and Christian thought to represent the abode of the blessed dead.
1. In the OT.
The word ?????????? appears to have had an oriental origin. It is said of the king of Persia that he had gardens which were called paradises, full of everything beautiful and good that the earth could produce. The LXX, adopting this word for the garden of Eden, which signifies 'delights,' accounts for Eden being often called paradise, and may account for the use of the word in the N.T. as denoting some place of happiness and blessing in the heavens. The Lord on the cross called the place where the thief would be with Him that day Paradise. Lu 23:43. The name is also given to 'the third heaven,' to which Paul was caught up, 2Co 12:4; and to the paradise of God, where there is the tree of life (type of Christ), of which the overcomer in the church at Ephesus would have authority to eat. Re 2:7.
This is a word of Persian origin, and is used in the Septuagint as the translation of Eden. It means "an orchard of pleasure and fruits," a "garden" or "pleasure ground," something like an English park. It is applied figuratively to the celestial dwelling of the righteous, in allusion to the garden of Eden.
It has thus come into familiar use to denote both that garden and the heaven of the just.
PARADISE, according to the original meaning of the term, whether it be of Hebrew, Chaldee, or Persian derivation, signifies, "a place enclosed for pleasure and delight." The LXX, or Greek translators of the Old Testament, make use of the word paradise, when they speak of the garden of Eden, which Jehovah planted at the creation, and in which he placed our first parents. There are three places in the Hebrew text of the Old Testament where this word is found, namely, Ne 2:8; Song 4:13; Ec 2:5. The term paradise is obviously used in the New Testament, as another word for heaven; by our Lord, Lu 23:43; by the Apostle Paul, 2Co 12:4; and in the Apocalypse, Re 2:7. See EDEN.