Happy first Saturday of 2020, friends! Welcome to part two of my Genesis blog series. If you read part one, you are all caught up on creation and I want you to know that it makes my heart dance knowing you decided to come back for the next part. You. Are. My. People.
If you’re new here, well I’m glad you came! Want to catch up real quick? You can do that by clicking here and reading part one. If you don’t want to catch up and you’re ready to just dive right in to part two, that’s okay too!
In part one I broke the book of Genesis down into nine categories. The first category was “Creation” and it covered chapters one and two. The second category, the one we are doing today, is “The Fall of Mankind” and it covers chapters three and four.
Get comfortable, pull out your Bible, and let’s get started…because things are about to get real.
Right out of the gate, things go wrong.
It starts out with the conversation between Eve and the serpent. Whether you call it a “serpent” or a “snake”, it’s important for you to know that both words represent the same thing: Satan. If you’re unsure about how the interaction went between Eve and the snake, here is a short breakdown…
The snake slithered it’s way up to Eve and asked her if God told her she couldn’t eat from any tree in the garden. Eve responded to the snake and told him that God said they could eat freely from any tree they wanted…except the tree in the middle of the garden. He said that if they ate from the tree in the middle, they would surely die.
The snake, being his snakey self, responded like, “Whaaaat?? You won’t die if you eat from that tree! God just doesn’t want you to eat from that tree because He knows if you do, your eyes will be opened and you will be like Him, knowing good and evil!”. (3:1-5).
Eve looked at the tree. She saw how beautiful it was and how beautiful it’s fruit was and now she knew that the tree would make her wise. She picked a piece of fruit and ate it. And then she gave her husband, Adam, the fruit and he ate it too. (3:6).
Remember in part one how Adam and Eve were frolicking around in a beautiful garden, naked, without a care in the world? Yeah…that was over.
After they both ate the fruit, their eyes were opened and they suddenly knew they were naked. Ashamed of their nakedness, they sewed fig leaves together and used them as loin coverings. When they heard God walking through the garden coming toward them, they got scared and hid behind some trees. (3:7-8).
And the next few verses go like this…
God is walking through the garden calling out, looking for Adam and Eve. Adam finally comes out and tells God that he heard Him coming and he got scared because he was naked, so he hid himself. God then asks Adam, “How did you even know you were naked? Did you eat from the tree I told you not to eat from?”. (3:9-11).
Adam explained to God that “the woman You gave me to be with me gave me a piece of fruit and I ate it.” God, of course, then turns to Eve asking her what she has done. Eve responds with, “The serpent deceived me and I ate.”. (3:12-13)
I think there is an interesting point to take into consideration here. When God questioned Adam and Eve about the fruit, Adam blamed Eve and Eve blamed the snake. Finger pointing at it’s finest.
God punished the serpent first. He cursed him more than all the cattle and every beast in the field. Because the serpent did what he did, on his belly he will go and dust he will eat. God put enmity between the woman and the serpent and her kids and the serpent’s kids. Woman will bruise the serpent on the head and the serpent will bruise her heel. (3:14-15).
(Side note: I don’t know about you, but snakes already scare the bejesus out of me. Studying this story didn’t help.)
Next, God punished Eve. Because she was the first one to eat the fruit, He punished her by greatly multiplying her pain during childbirth. Her desire was to be for her husband, and her husband was to rule over her. (3:16)
Lastly, God punished Adam. Because Adam listened to his wife and ate the fruit when he knew he wasn’t supposed to, God punished him by cursing the ground. In toil, man would eat from it. He would grow his food by the sweat of his face. (3:17-19)
By the sweat of your face you will eat bread, till you return to the ground, because from it you were taken; For you are dust, and to dust you shall return. Genesis 3:19
God made garments of clothes out of skin for Adam and Eve and sent them out of the Garden of Eden so they could go and cultivate the land. He stationed the cherubim and the flaming sword which turned every direction to guard the way of the tree of life. (3:20-24)
(Side note: Verse 20 is the first time the woman is referred to as Eve. Adam gave her that name because she was the mother of all living things.)
And that’s the end of chapter three.
Before we move forward, however, I want to share the theme I took away from this chapter and what my particular Bible study taught me.
Flip to Revelation 12:9 and Revelation 20:2. Notice how they relate to the first few verses in chapter 3 of Genesis? When given free will, Satan will always choose deceit. Always.
Okay. Now we can move on to Chapter 4. This is a short chapter but it tells a very important story.
The story of Cain and Abel.
Adam and Eve “have relations” and Eve gives birth to two sons: Cain and Abel. Cain was the oldest and he was a tiller of the ground. Abel was the youngest and he was a keeper of the flocks. (4:1-2)
It came time to bring an offering to the Lord and Cain and Abel both brought offerings. Abel brought the firstlings and fattest members of his flock as an offering and the Lord was pleased. Cain, on the other hand, brought the Lord fruit, but he brought the Lord fruit from the ground and the Lord had no regard for it. This made Cain super mad. (4:3-5)
The Lord asked Cain why he was mad and said if he did well, his countenance would be lifted up. But if he didn’t do well, sin was waiting for him and desiring him…and he had to learn how to master it.
Cain was so jealous of his brother Abel that, one day, they were both working in the field and Cain killed him. When God asked Cain where his brother was, Cain lied and said he didn’t know. God knew better and cursed Cain with the ground. He said that the ground would no longer yield strength and Cain would be a wanderer. But God also said that whoever killed Cain would be avenged sevenfold and He appointed him a sign. Cain then went out from the presence of the Lord to Nod, which was east of Eden. (4:8-16)
Cain had relations with his wife and she had a son named Enoch. Cain then built a city naming it Enoch, after his son. (4:17)
Verses 18-24 cover the family tree of Enoch and his children and their wives.
Chapter four ends with Eve having another baby boy and naming him Seth. She said the Lord appointed Seth to her in place of Abel. Then Seth had a son and named him Enosh. The men began to call upon the name of the Lord. (4:25-26).
And boom. Chapter four is finished.
Whew! We made it you guys! We made it through two of the nine categories of Genesis!
You know, I have always known the story of Adam and Eve and the snake, but I had never read it for myself. I had just heard the stories in Sunday School and what I learned growing up. It felt good to read it as an adult…for myself…because I wanted to. Not because someone was trying to teach me something. I took away a lot more from it this way than I ever did by halfway listening to a story someone told me.
I guess sometimes you have to look at things from all different angles before you can really see the big picture. It’s easy to take a mainstream Bible story and make it personal if you really try.
I would love to hear your thoughts on this blog post or the book of Genesis in general. Have you read it? Did you love (or hate) it? What did you learn from it? Let me know! Start a conversation! Leave me a comment below and, as always, don’t forget to hang out with me on Instagram and Pinterest!