2000-01-31 - "Where are You?"
Genesis 3:9-19 But the LORD God called to the man, "Where are you?" 10 He answered, "I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid." 11 And he said, "Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?" 12 The man said, "The woman you put here with me--she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it." 13 Then the LORD God said to the woman, "What is this you have done?" The woman said, "The serpent deceived me, and I ate." 14 So the LORD God said to the serpent, "Because you have done this, "Cursed are you above all the livestock and all the wild animals!You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life. 15 And I will put enmity between you and the woman,and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head,and you will strike his heel." 16 To the woman he said, "I will greatly increase your pains in childbearing;with pain you will give birth to children.Your desire will be for your husband,and he will rule over you." 17 To Adam he said, "Because you listened to your wife and ate from the tree about which I commanded you, `You must not eat of it,' "Cursed is the ground because of you;through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life. 18 It will produce thorns and thistles for you,and you will eat the plants of the field. 19 By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground,since from it you were taken;for dust you are and to dust you will return." (NIV)
As if God did not know where they were. He was being very gracious to them already. God called to them, and it is the beginning of His reclaiming them. In verses 11-13, Adam lays the blame for his sin on Eve. But, not really, he actually is laying the blame on God. "The woman, you gave me … " He insinuates that God is a partner in his sin. Eve in turn, also fails to take responsibility, but blames the serpent. They continue, both of them, to make things worse on themselves. They are now also guilty of lying.
The Provision of grace, is seen in verse 15. The one through whom grace would come was from the seed of the woman. Here is an implied promise of the virgin birth. It was the seed of the woman, not woman and man, through which Christ would come.
The suffering and death of Christ are also in view here with Satan bruising Him on the heal. Satan, led Judas to betray Christ, Peter to deny Christ, chief priests to prosecute Him, the false witnesses to accuse Him, and Pilate to condemn Him. Satan did this in an attempt to ruin salvation, but it was Christ's death that secured salvation. In his death, Hebrews 2:14 says, He destroyed him that had the power of death.
He shall bruise his head, Christ overcame Satan's temptations, in Matthew 4, and cast demons out of the bodies of those they had possessed. As the gospel of salvation goes forward, Satan falls (Luke 10:18), and is bound (Rev. 20:2), and will be cast into the lake of fire (Rev. 20:10).
The sentence upon Eve (verse 16) is a punishment mixed with mercy. The sorrow of child-bearing results in the joy that the child is born. She will be subject to her husband, but it is to her own husband, who loves her, not to a stranger, or to an enemy. Enmity was not put between that man and the woman, as it was between the woman and the serpent.
In verses, 17-19, the sentence is given to Adam. There is also mercy mixed in with the punishment. He will sweat, but that will make his rest all the more enjoyable. He will have sorrow, but he will also not starve, he will have bread. The serpent is sentenced to eat dust, but Adam will eat the herb of the field.
Lastly, his life is now short. "Dust you are." Man is but dust, a frail creature, and now also a mortal and dying creature. Sin brought death into the world. If Adam had not sinned, he would not have died, Romans 5:12.
So much for the long review of some key elements of Genesis 3. I have done this, because as I recently studied this passage, I was amazed at how grace and mercy was so evident from the start of God's dealings with Adam after his rebellion. God is a merciful God. And we need to remember how willing He is to forgive and reclaim us when we do not follow His will. Just as He dealt mercifully with Adam and Eve and provided grace for them, so He also has made provisions of mercy and grace for us in Christ.
Soli Deo Gloria,