Tag Archive | Adam and Eve

The Tragedy of Sin

And the Lord God called to Adam and said to him: “Where are you?”

Genesis 3:9

And the Lord God said to the woman: “What is this you have done?

Genesis 3:13

 

Discovering Truth:

Take time to reread Genesis 3. We will be making several observations from this chapter which help to explain how we lost the perfection of God’s original creation, how mankind lost their perfect fellowship with God, and why we have so much conflict and difficulty in relationships.

As soon as the woman and the man ate of the fruit which God had commanded them not to eat, immediately their eyes were opened and they knew they were naked.  It was the first time that they had any awareness of their flesh – an awareness of their self.

They desperately tried to cover themselves, and when they heard the voice of the Lord walking in the garden, they hid themselves from the presence of the Lord. Knowing exactly where they were and what they had done, God began to question them.  He addressed the man first. Adam admitted that he was afraid because he was naked.  Then God specifically asked him if he had eaten from the tree that God had commanded him not to eat. His response was one of blaming: The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree and I ate.

God then turned to the woman and questioned her. Her response, too, was one of blaming: The serpent deceived me, and I ate.

Interestingly, the Lord did not question the serpent at all, but pronounced immediate judgment on him!

Note the responses that sin brings to the human heart.

The sinner tries to cover his sin.

The sinner hides from the presence of God.

The sinner blames another to justify his actions.

Aren’t we guilty of the same?

It is very important for us to see and understand that God was not influenced by their reasons, excuses, or blaming of another.  He held each of them responsible for their own actions. Each one received specific consequences for their disobedient actions.

The Woman: We can recall the purpose for which God had created the woman.  She was created to be a help and companion to Adam.  They were joined into marriage – a one flesh relationship. God had commanded them to be fruitful and multiply, and from the one flesh relationship, indeed, children were to be born.  The woman’s body had been specifically designed by God to carry a child safely in the womb until the time of birth, and then to nourish and nurture that child, snuggled closely to her breast, as the child grew and developed.

Oh, the tragedy of her sin.  Now the very purpose for which she was created would bring sorrow and pain into her life as she bore and raised children. And tragically, the perfection of the husband and wife relationship was broken.  She would now desire to rule over her husband and overtake his position rather than being fulfilled by being alongside him as a help and companion. In return, the man would rule over her.  The beginning of conflict in families was born.

The creative purpose of God for the woman had not changed, but now those very purposes would be filled with pain, sorrow, heartache, and conflict.

The Man: Equally as tragic was the consequence for the man’s sin. In the same way as the consequences to the woman, the very purpose for which man was created would now be difficult. He had been created to tend and keep the garden, but now thorns and thistles would spring forth. The work for which he had been created would now be done by the sweat of his brow.  It would be a difficult task.  And finally, death would come, and man would return to the dust from which he was taken.

The creative purpose of God for the man had not changed, but now those very purposes would be filled with difficulty, sweat, and toil. He would now find himself at odds with the woman who had been created as his help and companion, and he would be determined to rule over her.

And finally, the most tragic consequence of all – the man and woman were put out of the garden and lost the perfect fellowship with God for which they had been created.

All the consequences were true tragedies and the devastating results of sin.

It is critical for us to understand that we can, indeed, take our own actions, even if they are disobedient to the Word of God.  But it is equally critical to understand that consequences are sure to come, and we do not get to choose what those consequences will be, nor how many others they will affect in the future!

In closing, we find that sin has entered the hearts and lives of the man and woman. It has separated them from God, and because God had ordained all things to reproduce after its kind, all mankind would now be born into this sinful state. What God had created perfectly was now completely broken. The man and woman truly lost the preciousness of living in the presence of God in perfect harmony with one another.

Did the Lord forsake them forever? Was there no hope? We will answer those questions in our next writing and will find how much God loves us and the means that He has given so that we may once again be restored to a life in fellowship with Him and fellowship with one another!

 

Personal Reflection:

Guilty, guilty, guilty! I am guilty of all the sins above. Unknowingly, I was born into sin, just as every human being since the fall of Adam and Eve.  The problem is that I was blind to it. I really couldn’t see it.  It takes God to open ours eyes so that we see our fallen human nature.  Fallen human nature is selfish. It is very aware of self, and it wants its way! It does not obey God, but goes about to fulfill its own desires, whatever they may be.

I tried to cover my sin. I hid from the presence of God, avoiding truth at every turn. And blame! Oh, I was a master at blaming someone else for my sin. I could always look around and find someone “worse” than me, and thereby make myself look good in my own eyes.

But God has a way of cutting right through our excuses and laying our hearts open before Him so that we see our self. And it is never a pretty picture! Oh, but the beauty of mercy, grace, and forgiveness!  We do not readily comprehend the depth of our sin until he shows it to us.  Neither do we realize the depth of His love for us until He opens our eyes to that great truth! We will talk about His redemption next time!

But here is what I would like to share with you. The two greatest struggles of my life were in being a mom and being a wife.  Because I had the fallen human nature of a woman, I experienced difficulty in raising my son. And because of that same fallen nature, I struggled in my marriage. I loved my child with an incredible love, but as he grew he developed a “mind of his own”, and untold struggles arose.

And as for my relationship with my husband, I was blind to it, but I was always attempting to overtake. I always thought that my ways were best. I thought I knew better. I thought my ways were wiser! I didn’t realize that I was attempting to overtake him, but that was exactly what I was doing.

It took the Lord to open my eyes. It took the Lord to forgive me. And it took the Lord, step by step, to change me! He, and He alone, is able!

 

So Until the Next Time:

I will leave you with questions for thought:

Do you recognize the fallen nature of a woman in yourself?

Do you struggle in raising your children?

Do you find yourself in conflict with your husband because you think your way is better?

(Remember Eve really thought her actions were wise and would produce good results.)

Do you try to overtake your husband and rule over him?

I was guilty of all, and these are the natural reactions of the fallen woman.

It takes God Himself to redeem and restore us to all that He created us to be as a NEW CREATION!

In an honest evaluation, allow the Lord to show you your heart, and then allow Him to change it!

If you are His child, thank Him for all the love, mercy, and grace that He has already extended to you!

 

He Who calls you is faithful, Who also will do it.

1 Thessalonians 5:24

 

 

 

The Subtlety of Deception

And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived fell into transgression.

1 Timothy 2:14

 

Discovering Truth:

We have been discussing the perfection of God’s Creation.  We explored the creation of the man and the woman and the joining of the two into one flesh.  We saw the beauty and the glory of what God was creating as He looked upon His Creation, and with all authority, declared that it was very good.

However, we all know as we look at the world around us, and as we consider our own lives, hearts, and relationships, that something has changed.  We see that everything has fallen short of God’s original design.  So, what we must ask is: Exactly what happened to mar the beauty of God’s perfect design?

Scripture gives us the answer. A careful reading of Genesis 3 provides insight into the dilemma.  We will consider some of those truths.

The cunning serpent entered the garden and approached, not the man, but the woman.  His first mode of action was to question the Word of God: Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’? Then the serpent openly contradicted the Word of God: You will not surely die. And finally, the serpent replaced the truth of God with his lie, a very deceptive lie, which convinced the woman that she was making a very wise choice to follow his cunning advice.

So, when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate.

It is important to note that in Genesis 2:9, God had already declared that all the trees of the garden were pleasant to the sight and good for food.  But here we find the phrase desirable to make one wise.  Interestingly, this is the first place in the Scriptures that the word wise is used.

The important truth to understand about deception is that the woman was completely deceived.  She really, really, really thought that her actions were wise.  She thought her actions would produce very good results.  Very subtly the serpent had persuaded her to move away from the command of God to an action she thought was good.  Then she gave the deadly fruit to her husband with her, and he ate.  Sadly, she did not turn to Adam to ask for leadership.  And sadly, Adam did not step up and guard his wife from the deception!  Both were guilty! Both disobeyed God! And both were going to be held accountable to God! But Adam wasn’t tricked, as the woman had been.  He knowingly disobeyed God’s command.  The results were tragic, which will be the topic of our next writing, but for today let’s focus on the danger of deception.

Satan stills tries to deceive, and he often uses the same tactics. He questions the Word of God.  He then openly contradicts the Word of God, and then He substitutes his lie for the truth of the Word of God.  If we fail to hold fast to exactly what God has said in His Word, we can be convinced that actions we take are going to produce very good results. We can be deceived into believing that our action is wise! But how could any action that we take be wiser than God’s way?

What a convicting truth James lays out in James 1:22:

But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.

Not only does Satan attempt to deceive us, but we can deceive our own selves. How important that we both hear and do the Word of God!

How will this all apply to the wise woman? Our wise woman will be very careful in her thoughts and actions.  She will not allow thoughts to pull her away from what God has said regarding a woman, and specifically regarding her and her marriage.  She will be very aware that she has the potential to be deceived into an action that she perceives as wise, all the while acting apart from truth. She will look to her husband (her God-given head) for leadership, guidance, and protection. She will not trust her ways and her will.  She will only trust the Lord.

Every wise woman trusts only in the Lord and in the truth of His Word!

 

Personal Reflection:

Oh, how prone we are to think our way is best, that our way is wiser! I constantly need to be reminded of this truth, but I remember as the Lord was first teaching me these truths. He made me very aware of two words in my thought process. I unknowingly would move away from what God’s word had said or what my husband may have asked of me.  Two words would be in my thought process.  They were but and just.

Any time that my thoughts began something like this: I know that God says ……. But ………. Or I know that David said ………. But ……. That meant that I was in trouble.  I was moving away from truth, getting ready to rationalize my move to my own way.  It was something the Lord had to open my eyes to because I really thought that what followed the but was quite a good idea! It was my own thoughts, but I certainly thought they were wise.  How easy to go astray!

I also learned to hear that little word just!  It went something like this: I know that the Lord says ……. But I am just going to …….. Or I know David said …………… but I am just going to ………  You see, just is a tiny move in our mind.  We know it is a move away from what we should do, but we deceive ourselves into thinking that if it is a tiny move, it will be OK.  Oh, but it is not OK.  When we just disobey a little, it is full disobedience. We easily recognize this as disobedience in our children, but do we recognize it in ourselves?

One further truth that the Lord taught me was that trying to work things out on my own would never produce good results.  The Lord brought me to the story of Abraham, Sarah, and Hagar.  Most of you probably know the story.  Sarah “hatched her own plan”, to which Abraham agreed.  However, they did not get God’s promise. They only got a work of their flesh, named Ishmael.

When we “hatch our own plan,” so to speak, it is a work of our flesh.  It can never produce God’s goodness. We must live according to the Word of God and trust Him to produce His blessed result! Where I ended up, in my heart, was with great conviction about doing things my own way, “hatching my own plans”, no matter how good my intentions might be.  It was as if the Lord spoke to my heart saying: Go ahead if you choose, but the best you will get will be an “Ishmael”.  I understood then that God’s work can never be done in my flesh, according to my own thoughts, ways, and manipulations. God’s work can only be done in full obedience to God Himself and His Word!

Remember, I said I still need reminding? Sometimes it is hard to wait for God to bring about His plan and His work.  But it is so worth waiting for! What do we do until that time comes? We wait. We pray. We serve. We love. His timing is perfect!

Lord, may we never settle for the work of our flesh, rather than Your perfect will. Protect us, Father, from subtle deception!

 

So, Until Next Time:

Spend time in thought and prayer about deception.

Settle in your heart that God’s way is the only good way.

Give thought to the truth that there is no way that could ever be wiser than God’s way.

Never listen to the argumentative thoughts in your mind as to why His way won’t work in your life and situation.

Trust Him to show you how He can make truth work in your life.

Ask the Lord to protect you from deception.

Meditate on being a doer of the Word, and not a hearer only!

Trust God for His goodness in your life.

 

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion

 seeking whom he may devour.  Resist him, steadfast in the faith …

1 Peter 5:8

 

… lest Satan should take advantage of us; for we are not ignorant of his devices.

2 Corinthians 2:11