What if you had total paradise at your fingertips and a face-to-face relationship with God? Can you imagine having no worries about work or finances, and a close relationship with both your spouse and your Creator? Sounds wonderful, doesn’t it?
Most people yearn for paradise or utopia like this, but when we had bliss, what did we do? We broke it and we keep breaking it!
We are like children with a precious new toy, which we throw in frustration when we don’t get our way. The newness is gone, and the toy no longer functions as it should. Creation was perfect, but, like the foolish children we are, we broke it with our conceit and refusal to heed God’s love and direction.
Genesis 3:8-11 tells of the consequences of Adam’s and Eve’s rebellion. Everything changed as soon as they disobeyed God, and the utopia they had known in Eden was shattered. “…And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. But the Lord God called to the man and said to him, ‘Where are you?’ And he said, ‘I heard the sound of you in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked, and I hid myself.’ He said, ‘Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?’”
Christians often talk about a “sin nature” which refers to our heredity of sin, that we are predisposed to choose what is evil over what is good. Ever since that day in the Garden of Eden, our sin nature has decayed our understanding of God and created separation from him. It is why we need a Savior, Jesus.
In Adam and Eve’s story, we see humanity move from a perfect harmonious relationship with God and nature to being ashamed and naked.
Dysfunction and pain are the consequence of disobeying God. Satan attacks us, telling us to not believe in God or in his power to restore, he tricks into hating God and goodness, and our actions have consequences.
The end of Genesis 3 tells God’s judgment on humanity for Adam and Eve’s disobedience, and the immediate consequence to the world. Genesis 3:22-24 says “Then the Lord God said, ‘Behold, the man has become like one of us in knowing good and evil. Now, lest he reach out his hand and take also of the tree of life and eat, and live forever—’ therefore the Lord God sent him out from the garden of Eden to work the ground from which he was taken. He drove out the man, and at the east of the garden of Eden he placed the cherubim and a flaming sword that turned every way to guard the way to the tree of life.”
It’s easy to see how humanity’s rebellion and the following exile from Eden affected everything. Even though we rebel, we make mistakes and we fall away, God’s grace continues. Even though he sees our hearts and knows our thoughts, he still loves us and calls us the apex of his creation. We desperately need a redeemer to save us, and we have one in Jesus – through the line of Adam and Eve, despite all of their mistakes and failures.
God still loves and pursues us, even through the mess we made; he gives us his plan and purpose for us, just as he did for our ancestors in the Garden of Eden.
Read the first post in this series here.