With the Lenten season here and Easter fast approaching, our minute of study until Easter Sunday will be about the reason for Jesus’s sacrifice on the cross. In eternity past the triune Godhead had a plan of redemption for when man disobeyed God in the Garden of Eden by eating of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, at that moment sin and death entered the world.
16 And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: 17 but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.
God gave one command for man to obey. He could have eaten from any tree in the garden except one. Was there a special chemical or drug in the forbidden fruit? Was there some unknown juice or seed in the fruit that would cause the fall of man? Was there some scent or invisible cloud that would compel Adam eating it and cause the man to die? There was nothing in that fruit that would compel Adam to eat it, neither would eating cause any physical change to him. The act of disobedience is the cause of the fall. Adam willfully disobeyed God’s command not to eat. Woman by being deceived was equally as guilty of disobedience but the curse of sin and death occurred the instant Adam ate of the fruit, not her.
3 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? 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.
Satan has used the same method throughout history to convince us that God doesn’t mean what He says and causing doubt in our minds. Woman correctly stated that God said not to eat the fruit but God never said not to touch it. Woman added this to God’s words as Satan convinced her that God really didn’t mean what He said. Satan said that when she ate the fruit she will be as gods. Just like today so many false beliefs state that humans will become a god on this earth or would after death. Woman ate of the fruit after being deceived, but notice the man was with her and ate also. Adam willfully disobeyed and in that moment the head of the human race, Adam, being the first created ,caused sin and death to enter the world. It was after Adam ate that the consequences of his actions still reverberate to this day. Adam and Eve were cast out of the garden so they wouldn’t eat of the tree of life that also was in the garden. Had they ate its fruit they would have lived forever in a state of sin and could never have been reconciled back to the relationship they had with God before the fall. We also would have no way to reconcile back to God if we lived forever in our sins.
So how can mankind be reconciled back to God and have an everlasting relationship with Him? Adam couldn’t reconcile on his own, Eve couldn’t, and you and I can’t reconcile ourselves back to God. Only the sacrifice of our Savior Jesus Christ on a cross and who rose bodily three days later from the grave can do that. A blood sacrifice is required to atone for sin and all the animal sacrifices in the Old Testament were a temporary covering of sin but could not permanently take away the sins of the world. Jesus willingly died on the cross for our sins and the shedding of His blood brought about the reconciliation but only if you believe in Him and accept Him as the Son of God. That is the Gospel. Your heartfelt belief in the Gospel will take away you past present and future sins and you will be in Jesus’s presence after you die. That guarantee of everlasting life and Jesus’s taking all our sins on himself while on that cross doesn’t give us a free to sin card for the rest of our lives. We will stumble because we have sinned like Adam but recognize the sin, ask God for forgiveness as you repent and go and sin no more as Jesus told the woman caught in adultery. (John 8: 3-11, AV)
God Bless, Phelps Chapel
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