After Man Was Created (1) – Journey Through the Bible (7)
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After Man Was Created (1) – Journey Through the Bible (7)
Sermon by Thomas Thornhill Jr
Passage: Genesis 2:20-25, Genesis 3
Period 1 of 17 (#3)
Tonight, we continue our study going through the Bible. Our past few lessons have been introductory and addressed the creation of the world from various angles. Today, as we continue, we move through the period before the flood. I intend to address the remainder of this period in2 lessons.
- Events to consider in the period
- The first marriage – Genesis 2:20-25 – of all God’s creation, a suitable helpmate was not found. So Eve was created. Moses uses this to introduce the first marriage. They are blessed in the garden, but there was ONE negative command – do not eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil.
- The fall of man – Genesis 3 records the first sin of Eve and Adam.
- Satan, in the form of a serpent, deceives Eve. He lies to her and appeals to her pride. She gives in and offers to Adam who also partakes. Their eyes were opened and they realized they were naked and thus hide themselves.
- The LORD appears to them and confronts them for their sins.
- Consequence of Adam and Eve’s sins – Serpent is cursed, both Eve and Adam are cursed. The ultimate curse is death (3:19)
- The first promise of redemption – Genesis 3:15 – the seed of woman would crush the head of Satan.
- Progressive wickedness – Cain murders Abel – Genesis 4.
- Sacrifices offered to God – necessarily implied in the text – God had given instructions about sacrifices. Why else would He have accepted Abel’s and rejected Cain.
- Cain murders Abel in jealousy
- He lies to God when asked where Abel is. (4:9) Am I my brother’s keeper? Cain tries to cover up his sinful act.
- The curse of Cain is pronounced – his ground would be cursed, he would be a fugitive and vagabond – the execution of Cain is forbidden (with vengeance taken 7-fold). Cain is marked.
- Cain begins his family, bearing Enoch and numerous other generations. One of his own descendants also kills (Lamech – 4:23)
- Seth – the promised lineage preserved – Genesis 4:25-26 – Seth is born as another seed in place of Abel. Cain could NOT be the lineage of deliverance because of his sin.
- Genealogies – Genesis 5 records the genealogy from Adam to Noah. This includes Enoch who would not see death.
- Some lessons for us to consider:
- God instituted marriage – (2:22-25)
- It is observed that this text is an interlude from the account. Moses presents a law that God clearly intended to apply to all mankind. We find in this text that marriage predated the LOM.
- The man is to leave his father and mother and take the woman to be his wife. We have here the beginning of a new family unit.
- Adam noted, “This is now bone of my bone, and flesh of my flesh”. In this Adam understood his responsibility toward her. Consider Ephesians 5:22-33 where Paul compares the marital relationship to that of Christ and His church. But notice the responsibility he gives to the husband to take leadership in the home! He loves his wife as himself. And note how Ephesians 5:31 quotes Genesis 2:24.
- As we consider this, we must also consider God’s law concerning its permanency and how He feels about divorce.
- Again, be reminded that Moses inserted this indicating its importance.
- The Bible is clear that God hates divorce – Malachi 2:16.
- The only cause for which He grants the right for one to divorce and marry another is unfaithfulness. That is the point Jesus made over and over.
- We must consider Matthew 19:1-9, in context, Jesus is asked by the Pharisees, “testing Him”, if it was lawful to divorce for any cause. Jesus said no and quoted our text – Genesis 1:27 and 2:24. He then concludes, “Therefore, what God has joined together, do not let man separate.” (Matthew 19:6). Understand if God recognizes a marriage (whatever the ceremony), then their relations are legitimate (not fornication). And if it is legitimate, then He has the right to establish its permanency, and He does! See Matthew 19:8-9, where Jesus gives us one exception granting the right to marry again – a faithful mate who puts his/her spouse away for committing adultery (fornication involving at least one married party).
- Why do I regularly emphasize this?
- Because it is ignored by many, explained away by others, and manipulated by others, even preachers and elders in some instances.
- Because it is a hard saying – and one that often we cannot logically rationalize in given circumstances. (But that does NOT change what God said).
- And because of how terrible divorce actually is. Many years ago, I heard a faith gospel preacher say something to the effect of: “The best thing that can be said about divorce is that it is worse than death.” Look at the destruction caused by broken homes in our society.
- I could say so much more, but that is not our ultimate point in this study.
- A Personal note: This subject is so important to me that I made a decision years ago that as a rule, I will not perform the marriage ceremony for anyone who has been divorced. While I acknowledge there is a scriptural cause for divorce and the innocent party to marry again, I have to admit that I do not know all the factors that led to a divorce (was the “innocent party” complicit in any way?), so rather than take a chance based upon doubt (see Romans 14:22-23) I choose not to perform that wedding ceremony. That does NOT mean I will not attend a ceremony where I BELIEVE the innocent spouse has a right to marry again, NOR will I question the legitimacy of that marriage. If I have no reason to object, I will assume that God recognizes that marriage, support it and expect all parties involved to be true to God’s word. But I will NOT perform the ceremony. That is the stand I have chosen to take. I take God’s laws concerning MDR that seriously. As a society, I attribute divorce and broken homes as one of the primary factors for our moral downfall.
- The fall of man –
- Genesis 3 is an important chapter in scripture as it lays the foundation for the rest of the Bible as the story of redemption unfolds. Had man not sinned, the Bible would have concluded with Genesis 2:26, “And they lived happily ever after” (note: there are only 25 verses in Genesis 2). In college, Genesis 3 was described as one of the 5 key passages of the Old Testament.
- Eve was tempted by Satan in the form of (or using) a serpent (3:1). Satan promoted doubt, lied to Eve (though some might say what he said was at least partly true – they did not die immediately), and made false accusations against God (vs. 1-5).
- Note: The name “Satan” means “adversary” and “devil” means “accuser” or slanderer. Both apply to him and clearly he is the instrument of the temptation and fall of man.
- Temptation typically comes from 1 of 3 avenues: 1) Lust of the flesh, 2) lust of the eyes, 3) the pride of life. We find all 3 in the temptation of Eve (3:6)
- Lust of the flesh – she saw the tree was good for food
- Lust of the eyes – it was pleasant to the eyes
- Pride of life – a desire to be wise
- We find all three in the temptations of Jesus (Matthew 4:1-11), and 1 John 2:15-17. NOTE: Luke Capps in our upcoming gospel meeting is presenting a series of lessons based upon temptation and sin. He will address these three avenues as they relate to Jesus.
- Eve partook and gave some to Adam and he ate also (3:6)
- Then their eyes were opened, and they realized they were naked (3:7). They had disobeyed God’s commands and that changed EVERYTHING! Their innocence was gone. Prior to this they did not realize (or care) that they were naked. Now they were exposed! I’ll talk about their realized nakedness in a moment.
- The LORD God appeared to them in the garden and challenged them (3:8-11). He asked if they had eaten of the forbidden fruit. They make excuses, but God does NOT accept them!
- Consider the curse –
- The serpent (Satan) – Gen. 3:14-15 – the serpent would be cursed and crawl on its belly eating dust. Enmity will exist between man and the serpent. And to this day, snakes are despised by most. We will address the seed in a moment.
- Eve – Gen. 3:16 –
- Sorrow and pain would be greatly multiplied in childbirth.
- Also, her desire would be to her husband.
- NOTE: This is the foundation of the order of submission according to God. Again, this predates any written laws of man.
- And while it is certainly not intended as justifiable ground for abuse of any sort, it IS God’s law.
- Numerous NT passages clarify the place and role of women, including leadership in the assembling of saints.
- 1 Corinthians 11:3 – describes the order of submission (including man submitting to Christ)
- 1 Corinthians 14:34-35 – women to keep silent in the churches. NOTE: Chapter 14 is addressing leadership roles. This is why we do not have women preachers, elders, deacons, or taking leadership in worship services.
- 1 Timothy 2:11-15 – NOTE: This text gives 2 reasons – 1) Adam was formed first, 2) Eve was deceived.
- Numerous other passages that teach submission – Ephesians 5:22-24, 1 Peter 3:1-6, Colossians 3:18, etc.
- NOTE that God established this order. And when ALL parties respect their roles, it works well.
- Adam – increased toil. His life was to be about providing and at times barely enough. He is expected to provide for the family. To fail to do so is to fail in his responsibilities – 1 Timothy 5:8
- Adam and Eve – death. Because of the sin of Adam, death entered into the world. Understand that spiritually, the day Eve and Adam sinned they died – they were separated from God. ALSO, that day, they began to die physically.
- Adam and Eve – separation from God – they were driven out of the garden. 3:22-24 – they had to leave the presence of God and the safety of His provisions.
- Concerning modesty:
- After sin they realized they were naked – sewed fig leaves, which were inadequate.
- God provided animal skins – Was blood shed to cover their “nakedness”?
- Spiritual lesson – we see the inadequacy of man’s attempts to cover up his sins. But God allowed blood to be shed to cover our sins through Jesus – Ephesians 1:7
- You cannot hide from God – TWICE in this section, we learn that you cannot ever hide from God. Both Adam and Eve tried to hide. Later, Cain tries to hide his murder from God. Let us never forget the first examples teach us that God is everywhere!
- The first sin resulted in the plan beginning to unfold.
- Genesis 3:15 – among the curse made to the serpent (Satan) – reference is made to enmity between the seed of the serpent and the seed of woman (her Seed).
- Clearly, this is the battle between good and evil. Between Satan and Jesus.
- Satan brought enmity and was the enemy of Jesus. He succeeded in having Jesus crucified (killed) – BUT HE FAILED! Jesus arose! In so doing, Satan “bruised the heel of Jesus”, but Jesus CRUSHED the head of Satan. 1 Corinthians 15:54-57 – the sting of death is sin, BUT in Christ being raised, “death is swallowed up in victory”.
- This is the KEY PASSAGE that begins God’s redemptive plan for mankind. We will see this unfolding throughout the Old Testament.
- God instituted marriage – (2:22-25)
In our next lesson, I intend to conclude our study of section 1 by addressing Cain and Abel, Seth and the genealogies. But here we learn the beginning of sin, but also the beginning of hope. Romans 3:23 tells us that “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Hope is available, but only if you reach out and take hold of it through Jesus. Romans 6:23, “the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Where do you stand before God?