HIDING, COVERED DUST
Lord we fully see the awful consequences of sin.
Read GENESIS 3:14–24
14 So the Lord God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this,
“Cursed are you above all livestock
and all 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[a] and hers;
he will crush[b] your head,
and you will strike his heel.”
16 To the woman he said,
“I will make your pains in childbearing very severe;
with painful labor 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 fruit from the tree about which I commanded you, ‘You must not eat from it,’
“Cursed is the ground because of you;
through painful toil you will eat food from 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.”
20 Adam[c] named his wife Eve,[d] because she would become the mother of all the living.
21 The Lord God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them. 22 And the Lord God said, “The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.” 23 So the Lord God banished him from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he had been taken. 24 After he drove the man out, he placed on the east side[e] of the Garden of Eden cherubim and a flaming sword flashing back and forth to guard the way to the tree of life.
a Genesis 3:15 Or seed
b Genesis 3:15 Or strike
c Genesis 3:20 Or The man
d Genesis 3:20 Eve probably means living.
e Genesis 3:24 Or placed in front
New International Version (NIV)
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
“The whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth … even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body” (Rom8:22,23, NASB).
Adam and Eve have been told by the serpent that they would be like God if they eat the fruit. That is, they could become more than what they are; they could elevate themselves. God acknowledges that the humans have become like him in knowing good and evil, (22) and thus He needs to prevent them eating from the tree of life. At the same time, He points out to the humans that they have lowered themselves by eating the fruit, for they will die and become dust. Actually, dust is what they were before God breathed life into them; the dust of the ground (19). To some extent they have reversed what they were. They have certainly removed themselves from the task they were assigned –to cultivate the garden – for they are now driven out of the garden. So very much has been lost. I’m sure they have no idea of the consequences to follow, not least that creation itself would be cursed. They are simply looking at the immediate effect of eating the fruit: knowledge for themselves. We are not so different, and if we could foresee the consequences of our sin, perhaps we would think twice about it.
Once they have sinned, they seek to cover themselves, so they sew fig leaves together (7). They still do not feel covered, however, because when they hear the sound of God in the garden, they hide themselves among the trees (8). It is God who covers them properly when He clothes them in animal skins (21). Is it significant that the only effective way to cover them after their sin is by the shedding of animal blood? Does this prefigure the Mosaic sacrificial system, and is this an ultimate adumbration of the cross?
If you feel guilty about forgiven sins, then meditate on the all-encompassing work of reconciliation that Christ accomplished on the cross. His grace was sufficient for your sins (cf. 2 Cor 12:9).
Father, we understand that the only covering for sin that avails us is the blood of the Son You sent to redeem us.
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