ALBERT BARNES' BIBLE COMMENTARY....another view of Genesis two with chapter one.
THE GARDEN. — Gen. ii. 8-14.
And the Lord God planted a garden in Eden to the east; and put there the man whom he had formed.
And the Lord God made to grow out of the soil every tree likely for sight and good for food; and the tree of life in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. 10. And a river was going out of Eden to water the garden: and thence it was parted and became four heads. 11. The name of the one was Pishon; it is that compassing the whole land of Havilah, in which was gold. 12. And the gold of that land was good; there were the bdellium and the onyx stone. 13. And the name of the second river was Gihon; it is that compassing the whole land of Kush. 14. And the name of the third river was Hiddekel: it is that going east of Asshnr. And the fourth river was Perath.
This paragraph describes the planting of the garden of Eden, and determines its situation. It goes back, therefore, as we conceive, to the third day, and runs parallel with the preceding passage.
8. And the Lord God planted a garden in Eden to the east. It is evident that the order of thought is here observed. For the formation of man with special allusion to his animal nature immediately suggests the means by which his physical wants are to be supplied. The order of time is an open question so far as the mere conjunction of the sentences is concerned. It can only be determined by other considerations.
Here, then, the writer either relates a new creation of trees for the occasion, or reverts to the occurrences of the third day. But though in the previous verses he declares the field to be without timber, yet in the account of the third day the creation of trees is recorded. Now, it is unnecessary, and therefore unreasonable, to assume two creations of trees at so short an interval of time. (COULD BE A VALID ARGUMENT BUT CERTAINLY NOT GUARANTEED - GOD CAN DO WHAT HE WANTS WHEN HE WANTS, TIME MEANS NOTHING TO HIM; HE IS NOT BOUND BY TIME - Keith Hunt). In the former paragraph the author advanced to the sixth day, in order to lay before his readers without any interruption the means by which the two conditions of vegetative progress were satisfied. This brings man into view, and his appearance gives occasion to speak of the means by which his wants were supplied.
For this purpose the author drops the thread of events following the creation of man, and reverts to the third day.
He describes more particularly what was then done. A centre-of vegetation was chosen for the trees, from which they were to be propagated by seed over the land. This central spot is called a garden or park. It is situated in a region which is distinguished by its name as a land of delight. It is said, as we understand, to be in the eastern quarter of Eden. For the word 'on the east' is most simply explained by referring to some point indicated in the text. There are two points to which it may here refer, — the place where the man was created, and the country in which the garden was placed. But the man was not created at this time, and, moreover, the place of his creation is not indicated; and hence we must refer to the country in which the garden was placed.
And put there the man whom he had formed. The writer has still the formation of man in thought, and therefore proceeds to state that he was thereupon placed in the garden which had been prepared for his reception, before going on to give a description of the garden. This verse, therefore, forms a transition from the field and its cultivator to the garden and its inhabitants.....
EMPHASIS IS MINE [Keith Hunt]
SO DO YOU SEE HOW BARNES UNDERSTANDS THIS SECTION. CHRONOLOGY THAT GOES BACK AND FORTH. HENCE TO READ IT AS BARNES DOES WOULD BE: Verse 8 "And the Lord God [HAD] planted [already on the 3rd day] a garden in Eden to the east."
As Barnes says the writer EITHER relates a new creation [a garden created when man was created on the 6th day] OR reverts back to the third day - THE GARDEN CREATED ON THE 3RD DAY READY FOR THE MAN TO BE PUT IN IT ON THE 6TH DAY WHEN MAN AND WOMAN WERE CREATED AND TOLD TO CARE FOR IT.
THIS LATTER IS THE WAY BARNES WANTS TO UNDERSTAND IT, A CHRONOLOGY THAT MOVES BACK AND FORTH. BUT STILL NO CONTRADICTION WITH CHAPTER ONE.