Skip to main content

Genesis 3: In search of wisdom

In the garden, waiting for the King and his bride to fill the world, to extend the garden into a global temple in which God lives with his people.

And then one of the animals speaks to the women and questions what God has said. At first it might sound like an honest question. Did God actually say? But soon we see that this is a stunning overthrowing of divine authority. God's word is distorted. The doctrine of the authority of scripture is cast aside, and with it the inconvenient doctrine of divine judgement. And the woman plays along.

She is caught up by the appearance of a tree that looks good to eat from, that delights the eyes (a blessing from God!) and is good for obtaining wisdom. Wisdom is a good pursuit. God says that it comes from fear of the Lord, he says that it's found in the person of Christ. She reaches out and takes wisdom for herself. The ultimate Man would have given it to her, she casts that aside. And the man follows along.

She is deceived. He sins. Both are accountable for their actions. Their eyes open and rather than being helped by this wisdom they are full of shame. They begin to love darkness. They thought they'd be wise but they have become fools. They hide from each other. They hide from God. The bliss of Eden is interupted by the consequences of sin.

And then God acts further. Not to kill them immediately, but to bring curse upon sinners that will lead to death. The serpent is cursed. The woman is cursed in childbearing - more pain than before. The man is cursed in work - as he goes out to extend Eden it's going to hurt. Moreover dust, from which he came, will overcome him.

“Adam would never have dared oppose God’s authority unless he had disbelieved in God’s Word… Adam, carried away by the devil’s blasphemies, as far as he was able extinguished the whole glory of God” Institutes, Calvin II. i 4

Yet the curse is laced with hope. There will be a serpent crushing seed. There will be a seed! They might yet fill the earth! There will progress. And Adam has faith in God even in his curse, naming his bride Mother of All. And God kills animals to clothe them properly - blood is shed to remove shame. That points somewhere!

But, they're driven out of the garden into the wilderness. They're kept from the tree of life from which they could have eaten. God will not let these rebels live. They will die. But, they will work and they will have offspring. Hope remains.

Yet still how will they live? Angels bar the way - just like the temple curtains (Exodus 26v31) - this great temple where God and man are meant to dwell is inaccessible until the seed will come. The serpent-crusher. The garden-enterer. The one who can take his people back in to eat from the tree of life.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

"Big eyes full of wonder"

Books. Fiction. Libraries. Second only to churches as are the best gateways in your community to ultimate reality and new possibilities.

Our local library has just re-opened after refurbishment, and I love that our boys have spent several mornings there during the summer holidays, discovering some wonderful new stories.

I realised a few months back that I wasn't reading enough fiction. My work necessitates reading a lot of non-fiction, a mix of historical and contemporary thinking, biblical studies and theology. But fiction is the cinderella. Easily overlooked, and yet able to awaken my imagination and show me the way things are meant to be.

So I've picked up a few more lately - bought and borrowed. Not every book attempted flies, and that's ok. These have been winners though.

Ink. This is Alice Broadway's debut novel. It's young adult fiction and tells the story of Leora who lives in a world where the events of your life are tattooed on your skin. Nothing gets hid…

Uniquely Matthew

Reading gospel accounts in parallel is sometimes used to blur the differences in perspective between the evangelists, seeking to harmonise the texts and find a definitive historical account of what happened. No such thing exists because every account is biased and limited. You simply can't record everything. You have to hold a vantage point. And that's not a problem.

Matthew, Mark and Luke take a very different vantage point to John who was of course an eyewitness himself of the events. Comparing the text of Matthew, Mark and Luke across the death and resurrection of Jesus yields two steps.

Firstly, the common ground. All three accounts tell of...
Simon of Cyrene carrying the cross…. · Jesus labelled as King of the Jews…. · Criminals crucified with Jesus… · Darkness in the daytime… · Jesus' loud final cry… The women who witnessed Jesus death, and Jesus' burial… · The tomb lent to Jesus by Joseph of Arimithea… · The women who went to the tomb on the morning of the…

Songs we're singing in Church

Christians are a singing people, it's part of what we do when we gather.

Our church meets morning an evening on a Sunday - normally using 5 songs in each service. So, over the year that's about 520 song-slots available. The report from the database system we use (http://planningcenteronline.com/) tells us that in the past year we've sung about 150 different songs.

Our current most used song has been sung 11 times in the last year, just under once a month. Our top 10 are used about every 6 weeks. By #30 we're talking about songs used every two months. The tail is long and includes loads of classic hymns from across the centuries, plus other songs from the past 40 years, that we have used around once a term or less.

1. Rejoice - Dustin Kensrue



2. Come Praise & Glorify - Bob Kauflin



3. Man of Sorrows - Hillsong



4. Cornerstone - Hillsong


Rejoice was a song I didn't previously know, along with a couple of others that have quickly become firm favourites for me: Chri…