Sunday service, Michael Ngubane, 18 Sep 2016
1 Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? note
2 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:
3 But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.
4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:
5 For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.
6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.
7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.
8 And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden.
9 And the LORD God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?
10 And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.
11 And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat?
12 And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.
13 And the LORD God said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.
One point we find here is listening and obeying God in all things. Another thing is doubt; Doubting the truth that one knows.
Another point is the consequence of disobedience and doubt. If one reads the chapter before this one understands how sad this chapter is, the saddest in the whole Bible.
Man was made in the image of God and He called everything He had made very good. God gave man various tasks to do in the garden, and gave him great freedom. They could eat of every tree in the garden except the tree in the midst of the garden, the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
But then the serpent arrived on the scene, being more crafty than any other animal. We don’t fully understand everything about this situation. This serpent could speak.
At first the serpent seemed innocent enough, simply asking a question, “Did God really say?”
This planted the seed of doubt.
We need to closely look at these three, Adam, Eve and the snake. When the serpent spoke to Eve, where was she? From the context it seems as if she was already very close to the tree, and maybe even longingly looking at the forbidden fruit. Satan found her being ripe for temptation.
After she ate of the fruit we read that her eyes were opened. Had her eyes been closed before? No, but she saw things from God’s perspective. Now she saw them in a different way and noticed that they were naked.
It also doesn’t look like she was close to her husband for the snake spoke to her. Only after she ate did she give to her husband and he ate.
Before they ate of the forbidden fruit they had daily fellowship with God. One can only imagine the sweet daily fellowship they had with God when He walked in the cool of the day. But after they ate of it they fled from His presence when they heard Him walking in the garden.
Maybe it’s the same with you? You enjoyed sweet fellowship with God but today you fear God’s voice and His presence? When did doubt enter your life? Maybe at this very moment you’re doubting God’s word. Maybe you doubt His forgiveness and victory over sin.
Maybe you find yourself lukewarm today. What is it that caused you to become lukewarm? Where is the assurance you’ve once had?
Beware of the serpent. He wants to have a discussion with you and sow doubt in you. Maybe you’ve seen the damage to those who have departed from God, but you’re joining their discussion. Are you drawn to those who are lukewarm, while you flee from those who are in fire for God?
Are you in the place where God put you and are you still experiencing the sweetness of being in His will? Remember what God had once said to you. Are you still clinging to that?
Adam, was the man God created and Eve, the woman to be with him as a helpmeet. However, Adam forsook his duty and listened to his wife when he should not have. This should be a warning for us men to guard over our families that nothing that defiles enter. But many men, in order to keep the peace simply allow every evil thing in their family. But God didn’t start with Eve, but with Adam. Adam accused his wife and she again the serpent. Instead of humbling themselves they passed the buck. And till today it is the same where people don’t want to own up to their sin and humble themselves, but accuse others.
Do you still know how to humble yourself under the hand of God, or do you do your own thing?
To what is your heart drawn? Do you long back to your life in Egypt? Child of God be thankful for what God had done for you. The Bible says, “because they did not thank God He gave them over to their perverted lusts” (Rom 1:21-24). Be thankful for what God had given you lest you also lose that.
We also see here how seriously God takes sin. He no longer considered the sweet fellowship He had with them, but sent them out of Paradise when they sinned and had no more sweet fellowship with them.
But God in His love didn’t leave it there, where they remained outside. He sent His Son, the Lord Jesus, to restore and save us, so that Paradise might once again be restored; that we can once again enter Paradise. God had made the bridge where God and man can once again be reconciled.
Can you distinguish between the voice of God and the serpent? It’s a terrible condition when you call black white and white black. That’s characteristic of a person far from God. But even such a person can come to God and be helped and receive life.
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