Fear is something we seem to be unable to control. Fear is accepted in our world, even encouraged. It seems to be built into our minds to instantly fear. An uncontrollable reflex and emotion.
The interesting thing about fear is that it instantly appeared with the first sin, going against God’s word. Adam and Eve were instantly aware of their nakedness and afraid when they heard God calling for them.
This fear came because they listened to the evil serpent instead of trusting in God. The serpent enticed Eve to want the one thing God said no to. At that moment she shifted her focus from God and all He had blessed her with. She then enticed her husband and in one moment, for curious pleasure, they had sinned against God and their lives changed forever.
That one decision to go against God’s word cost Adam and Eve everything. They were cast out of the Garden of Eden and left to fend for themselves out in the world.
What I find amazing in Genesis 3:21 is that even though God cast them from the garden, he still cared for them. He made them clothes before He sent them on their way.
There is som much to learn in this short chapter. God is giving us instruction with the example of Adam and Eve.
What I learned:
1. Fear provokes sin and sin provokes fear. Fear is the common denominator of sin and sin is the common denominator of Fear.
2. Choosing to step outside of God’s will and do what you know He doesn’t want you to do is sin.
3. Our choices have consequences.
4. God still covers us and loves us even when we go against Him.
5. God still seeks us out even when we have sinned and are trying to hide from Him.
Many argue that the Bible is outdated. The world was a different place. Those words don’t apply to us and the way we live today. The interesting thing is that God didn’t kill the serpent. He just made him lower than anything else on earth. That serpent is still enticing people today. The very argument that the Bible doesn’t apply to us today is that same voice that enticed Eve.
Situations are different today; but God is the same. Being led by anything other than God’s word, leads us to sin.
Many argue God’s very existence, saying if there is a God, why does He allow killing and suffering. God gives us a choice. By placing it that tree and serpent in the garden, He allowed free will. He gave Adam and Eve paradise; but when they shifted focus from Him to the one thing He said don’t even touch, they chose.
See, if you don’t have freedom to choose, then what good is love? How can someone forced into a relationship have happiness and joy?
People see the Bible as a set of rules. Churches teach rules and regulations. Some perceive God as all fire and brimstone. Genesis 3 teaches us that there is great freedom with a rue relationship with God. It also tells us that stepping outside of God’s will, by making choices we know are agains His word, brings sorrow and grave consequences. We make our own lives harder or easier, according to the choices we make.
Being a thief and murderer will get you thrown in jail. Freedom gone. Freedom isn’t just getting to walk around, go wherever you want, do whatever you want. Freedom is the ability to choose. We imprison ourselves with the choices we make. Fear either rules the choices we make or is a product of the choices we make.
Some are afraid to speak God’s truth. In some parts of the world, one would be put to death for being a Christian. In other parts of the world, people fear what others will think of them. Maybe you would loose some friends or family for simply believing in God.
That serpent roams this world on his belly, whispering doubt into our ears. He puts beautiful, shiny things in our sights. We desire acceptance of our peers over relationship with God. That serpent is busy every minute spreading news of killing to instill fear in us.
God doesn’t cause mass killings. God doesn’t make someone walk into a movie theatre with a gun and kill innocent people. People choose their own acts.
That one act of defiance against God’s word. That one moment of doubt. That one beautiful, delicious piece of fruit Eve chose to taste, set in motion a chain reaction of doubt and fear. One choice of one woman set in motion sin and shame. Defiance. Doubt in God and His word.
What is your tree of life? What is the evil serpent speaking to you? What are you seeking that looks better than what you already have? Is it a bigger house? Better clothes? A different husband? No husband? Acceptance? Love? Pills? Alcohol?
Are you hoarding guns for fear of martial law? Do you blame God for the way you were raised? Do you think you are being punished for being a bad person? Do you think you are not worthy of a better life? Do you lie just to get what you want? Do you manipulate others just to get what you want?
I pose these questions, no to shame or cause pain. I present modern problems we face. We all have to choose. I had to choose to seek God. I had to choose to stop living in the pain of my childhood. I have to choose God over sin every day.
It is my prayful hope that you choose God over the voice of the beguiling serpent.