8 Then the man and his wife heard the Lord God walking in the garden. It was during the coolest time of the day. They hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden. 9 But the Lord God called out to the man. “Where are you?” he asked. 10 “I heard you in the garden,” the man answered. “I was afraid, because I was naked. So I hid.” 11 The Lord God said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten fruit from the tree I commanded you not to eat from?” 12 The man said, “It’s the fault of the woman you put here with me. She gave me some fruit from the tree. And I ate it.” 13 Then the Lord God said to the woman, “What have you done?” The woman said, “The serpent tricked me. That’s why I ate the fruit.” 14 So the Lord God spoke to the serpent. He said, “Because you have done this, “You are set apart from all livestock and all wild animals. I am putting a curse on you. You will crawl on your belly. You will eat dust all the days of your life. 15 I will make you and the woman hate each other. Your children and her children will be enemies. Her son will crush your head. And you will bite his heel.” 16 The Lord God said to the woman, “I will increase your pain when you give birth. You will be in great pain when you have children. You will long for your husband. And he will rule over you.” 17 The Lord God said to Adam, “You listened to your wife’s suggestion. You ate fruit from the tree I warned you about. I said, ‘You must not eat its fruit.’ “So I am putting a curse on the ground because of what you did. All the days of your life you will have to work hard. It will be painful for you to get food from the ground. 18 You will eat plants from the field, even though the ground produces thorns and prickly weeds. 19 You will have to work hard and sweat a lot to produce the food you eat. You were made out of the ground. You will return to it when you die. You are dust, and you will return to dust.” 20 Adam named his wife Eve. She would become the mother of every living person. 21 The Lord God made clothes out of animal skins for Adam and his wife to wear.
God knows that Adam and Eve have sinned, yet He seeks them out. He didn’t strike them dead or exile them straight away. He sought them, confronted the sin and pursued relationship. There were negative consequences, but there was also a seed of hope, in the promise of Eve’s descendent.
How interesting… God didn’t say that one of Adam’s descendants would crush the enemy… But Eve’s seed. In a sense Eve took the first bite and offered it to Adam, and though she wasn’t solely responsible she initiated the disobedience. How gracious of God then to use a woman, Mary, to bring into the world the saviour who would crush the serpent and put things to rights. I see it as God redeeming women, associating them no longer with the initial step of sin, but blowing that away with the far surpassing privilege of being intimately involved in God’s rescue mission.
On the one hand it can seem a small detail of relative insignificance, but on the other hand it declares that God is a gracious, kind and detail focused God. If I were Eve and could see how God wove together the story of salvation I would be so encouraged that despite my mistakes God loves me and is able to turn my mistakes into something breathtakingly beautiful.
Thank you God that you are the master storyteller taking our mistakes and failures and weaving them into a glorious tale of triumph. Thank you that because of the cross we are no longer sinners but your glory on the earth – our lives shouting out the power of God to forgive and transform and set free. Help me to remember that it’s all about you and what you have done for me. Amen.
Written by Beth Waugh