The Beginning of Our Story (Genesis 3:1-15)
Rev. David French
Today, we begin a ten-week exploration of God’s Word. Each week we’ll look at a revelation from Scriptures to learn what it reveals to us about God’s Son, our Savior, Jesus Christ who is God’s plan for our salvation.
So, let’s start at the beginning. The very first verse in the Bible reads, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth” (Genesis 1:1). We see how God brought the heavens and the earth into existence using nothing but the power of His word. The first chapter of Genesis tells us how God formed the sky, and land how He filled the heavens with the sun, moon, and stars, then the earth with trees and vegetation, animals of all kinds, and finally mankind. But, you may ask, where is Jesus in all this? John the apostle gives us the answer in the first chapter of his gospel, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him was not anything made that was made” (1:1–3).
Jesus is the Word of God who brought everything into existence. But, look at our world today. There are natural disasters, droughts, floods, fires, earthquakes, hurricanes, and tornadoes. There is crime, war, illness, and death. Where did all these ugly things come from? Is this how God created the world to be? And if not, what is He doing about it?
Well, to begin, on the sixth day, after creating the world, God stepped back to examine His handiwork, “And God saw everything that He had made, and behold, it was very good” (Genesis 1:31). The bad things we see all around us are the result of a tragic choice made by the first humans, Adam and Eve. We read in Genesis, “Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the Lord God had made” (3:1). Now at this point, the Bible doesn’t say who this serpent is. But in the Book of Revelation we read, “That ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world” (Revelation 12:9).
So, who is the devil? To begin, God created him as a holy angel. More than that, he was an archangel. Sadly, this angel turned away from God and became the author of all the evil and suffering that fills the earth— from plants and animals to us. The Scriptures don’t tell us how Satan fell into sin, only that he did, and he convinced a great number of angels to join his unholy rebellion against their Creator.
Since the fall, Satan and his followers have been enemies of God and His people. It was Satan who entered the Garden of Eden in the form of a serpent with a half-truth, also known as a lie, that led to Adam and Eve joining his rebellion against our Creator. “He said to the woman, ‘Did God actually say, “You shall not eat of any tree in the garden”?’ And the woman said to the serpent, ‘We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, but God said, “You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.” ’ But the serpent replied, ‘You will not surely die.’” directly contradicting God’s word.
Moses, who later wrote down the words of Genesis, recorded the thoughts that passed through Eve’s mind as she looked at the forbidden fruit, “So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate” (3:6).
St. Paul, in 1 Timothy 2:14, says this, “Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and became a transgressor.” Think about that. Eve was deceived, but not Adam. That means Adam knew it was all a lie. He knew the tree would not make them wise, but they would surely die. So, why in the world would Adam eat that fruit? Why didn’t he step forward and put the serpent in its place and protect Eve and all their unborn children? Why did he just stand by silently and watch Eve take a bite of that fruit and then take a bite himself?
The effect of Adam and Eve’s disobedience was immediate. Their eyes were opened, and they knew that they were naked and felt shame. They sewed fig leaves together and made cloths for themselves to cover their shame. (Genesis 3:7)
Have you felt that searing kind of guilt? The deep burning shame and the desire to be able to turn back the clock? In a moment our human nature was drastically changed. We lost the image of God and now carry within us the sinful image of Satan. It’s that sinful nature that gives rise to all the distrust, fear, hatred, crime, and war with our brothers and sisters in the human race. And what’s worse is that we’re powerless to change. In fact, we are born dead to God and enemies by nature.
Does that seem unfair—for you to be condemned as a sinner thousands of years before you were even born? Why should you suffer for what Adam and Eve did? Simply put, it’s because we’re all interconnected; a part of the human family.
God’s solution? He could have just started over, but God even then loved you and me and all who are born of Adam and Eve too much to throw us away. So, God came walking through His garden in the cool of the day to seek and find His two lost children. But when they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, Adam and Eve hid themselves among the trees. The feeling of shame Adam and Eve had first felt was nothing compared to the terror that gripped them now. Imagine, they tried to hide from God. “But the Lord God called to the man saying, ‘Where are you?’ Adam answered, ‘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?’ ” (Genesis 3:10–11)
Here was the time for Adam to make his confession. Instead, the man said, “The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate” (Genesis 3:12). God turned to Eve, “What is this that you have done?” The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate” (Genesis 3:13). God turned to Satan, “I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel” (Genesis 3:15).
In that moment, the Lord God announced His great plan to save humanity and restore His damaged creation. His eternal Son would join the human family, become one of Eve’s descendants, and as true God and true man, He would crush the serpent’s head.
Satan received a mortal blow when Jesus Christ hung from the cross. Jesus suffered horribly as He was punished for Adam and Eve’s sin and the sins of all humanity. Since that day, Satan has been writhing in his death throes. He’s still dangerous, but He’s been defeated.
Adam and Eve were driven out of the garden. They would have to labor and toil to raise their food. The ground would no longer yield its strength to mankind. Our bodies grow frail, get sick, wear out, and eventually, we die. Bad things happen in this world, but it won’t be that way forever. Christ is coming back to judge the living and the dead. He will make all things new again. And He will transform us completely—body, mind, and soul, so we will be what God created us to be. And we will bask in the glory of God our Father and His Son Jesus Christ, our brother and our Savior forever. Amen.