Updated: Mar 23, 2019
by Dave Miller
The world changed in moment, the moment when the authority of God was replaced by the authority of man. Idolatry was born. A desire for a piece of fruit from a single tree replaced the desire for the creator God of glory and the loving protection of his word.
Satan in the form of a serpent slithered up to Eve and asked a simple question.
“Did God actually say?”
The loyalty of Eve, living as an ambassador of God, was challenged. Did God actually say? Could he be trusted? Of course her response was quick and precise:
“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’” (Gen. 3:3).
Eve responds to the challenge with the authority of God’s word. God said! But it was no longer just God’s word that she was trusting; because she added her own declaration to make certain the point. Eve said we don’t eat the fruit or touch the fruit, lest we die (Gen 3:3). God’s word that can create something out of nothing was no longer authority enough; she had to add her authority as well. God said don’t eat the fruit. Eve said don’t touch the fruit.
Satan exploited the chink in Eve’s armor.
“You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil” (Gen 3:4-5).
God is keeping something that you deserve Eve! God can’t be trusted, because if he really loved you he wouldn’t be withholding this wisdom. You can be like God.
Eve was already like God. She bore, as an ambassador of his authority in creation, God’s image in all its glory. She lacked no good thing. She did not know evil. Now, everything changed because the ambassador attempts to become queen. The moment of tragedy:
“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. Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked” (Gen. 3:6-7a).
Eve now knows evil. Her disobedience to the word of God by forsaking his authority for her own is the antithesis of an ambassador. Eve exchanged the role of ambassador for the crown of a queen and gave some fruit to her husband. Adam willingly ate the fruit and crowned himself king. In the split second of a moment Adam left the grand purpose of God and entered into the inferior purpose of Adam. Together they unwittingly began a futile coup d’état from a whisper in Eve’s ear, “Did God actually say?” Treason.
There is only one response to treason, death. The real authority, Creator God, comes walking through the garden looking for the traitors and finds them hiding. Behind a bush Adam and Eve try to solve their failure by covering their shame with leaves. Death was required and the first couple thought a couple of fig leaves should do the trick. Yet, God unexpectedly does not bring death. You see the treasonous ambassadors may try to take authority, but their attempts cannot thwart the mission of God. He will be glorified and his glory will fill the earth through his image bearers because God has declared it so.
God showed mercy and substituted Adam and Eve’s death with the death of an animal. He covers their nakedness with the skin of the substitute. Death came to creation for the first time and Adam and Eve wore the result of their treason. The effects of their disobedience not only affect Adam and Eve but all of creation. The very animals they were responsible to care for are now hanging dried and dead from their bodies. God pronounces curses on man, woman and creation (Gen 3:14-19). Sinful image bearers now fill the earth with idolatry and brokenness instead of worship of the one true God (Gen 6:5).
Up Next: Failed Attempts and Idols
Until there's #NoPlaceLeft...
Sentergy: When Jesus, People, Practice and Theology Collide
Chapter 1: The Glory of God
Chapter 2: The Glory of God in Jesus
Chapter 3: The Glory of God in the Gospel
Chapter 4: The Glory of God in Disciple Making
Chapter 5: If You Love Me You Will Obey What I Command
Chapter 6: Monday Morning Disciple Making
Chapter 7: Monday Morning Disciple Making Part 2
Interlude: The Father's Heart
Conclusion: The Lump In Your Throat