In Genesis 2:7-9 we read that “the LORD God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature. And the LORD God planted a garden in Eden, in the east, and there He put the man whom He had formed. And out of the ground the LORD God made to spring up every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The tree of life was in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.“
We then see that “The LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it. And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, ‘You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die‘” (Genesis 2:15-17). God then made a woman for Adam (Genesis 2:18-25).
Adam and Eve found themselves in a paradise on earth. It was a beautiful place where they could work, live, and raise a family. They had all the food they could ever want. They were safe. Above all God was with them. And if you can imagine, they only had one law! God had told them that they were not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. THAT’S IT! That we know of anyway. It was a place and time we can only dream of on this earth.
But, they threw it all away. They gave it all up. As the saying goes, they didn’t know how good they had it until it was gone. Why? How? All because they couldn’t keep themselves from eating off of one particular tree. We read of their downfall in Genesis 3. There are a few lessons about temptation and sin that we need to learn from their example. Here they are:
- Watch out for “that one thing I just gotta have.”
Why did Eve want to eat of that tree so bad? Was it because she was starving and there was no other food? Were all the other trees bad? Did she need it? No. No. And no. Look back at the record. Adam and Eve had PLENTY of food and provisions from God. “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit. You shall have them for food” (Genesis 1:29). But Eve became so fixated on that one single food that she ignored all the bountiful blessings God had already given her (Genesis 3:6).
Satan wants to do that to us today. He wants us to think that we just have to have that, we just have to do this, we absolutely must experience this or that or our lives will not be happy. But it is in those times that we need to look to God and consider all that He has provided for us. I don’t have to commit fornication to be happy. I don’t have to dance to have fun. I don’t have to curse and swear to express myself. I don’t have to ______________ to have a fulfilling life. Satan wants us to think that fulfillment and pleasure in life will only come from sin. He’s WRONG. True happiness and enjoyment comes from following Christ. Especially when it comes to eternity.
- Do not “reason about God’s commandments.”
Was Eve ignorant about the fruit of that tree and that she wasn’t suppose to eat it? Did she not know? Did she forget? None of the above. She knew perfectly well what God’s law was about that tree – “Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the LORD God had made. 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.“‘” (Genesis 3:1-3).
What happened was Satan got her to thinking and reasoning about God’s command. He deceived her by telling her that she wouldn’t die, but Eve knew better. She began to question God’s command which led her to rejecting it all together. She should have told Satan, “No, I know the command. It’s simple and straightforward. Leave me alone.” But she gave in to her own feelings and opinions.
When someone begins to reason about God’s commands and finds themselves softening them, changing them, or ignoring them all together, they will find themselves in the hand of our God who is a consuming fire. God’s commands are plain. We are not to question. We are to do.
3) “Where was Adam?”
We talk a lot about Eve and what she did, and for good reason. But the question begs to be asked, where was Adam? Adam was physically there in the garden with her. We read that “she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate” (Genesis 3:6). He was guilty too.
What should Adam have done? He should’ve stopped Eve if at all possible and if it wasn’t possible then he should have rejected it himself. He didn’t stand up for what was right. For whatever reason he too gave in.
We must learn from Adam’s mistake. We must never give in to sin. We must never go along with the crowd. We must always put God first and His will above all others.
If we will learn from these 3 lessons, we can prevent ourselves from falling into temptation and sin. Pay attention. Stay awake. Follow Jesus.
To GOD be all glory and praise!