“Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden. 9 But the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?” 10 He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.” 11 And he said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?” 12 The man said, “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 is this you have done?” The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”Genesis 3:8-13 NIV
There is something about this exchange that I missed for a long time. Maybe you’ve never heard it and you need to. Maybe you’ve heard it and you need to be reminded.
After Adam and Eve rebelled against God, they got their wish (careful what you wish for). Their eyes were opened and they realized they were naked. So they sewed fig leaves together to try to hide themselves.
Then God walks through the garden. Not only were Adam and Eve trying cover up their nakedness, they were literally playing hide and seek with God. So God calls out “Come out, come out wherever you are.”
When Adam comes out God asks him a question. This is what I missed. Why did God ask him questions? Why does God ask Adam where He is? Is it because He doesn’t know where they are or what they did? Of course not, He’s God. He knows everything. So why does God ask Adam where he is?
To get him to come out of hiding. That’s what our sin does, it makes us want to hide. Rebellion leads us to isolation. If God is going to deal the rebellion, he has to draw us out of hiding. And God keeps asking questions.
“Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?” What is God doing? God is drawing out a confession from Adam. He wants Adam to admit what He had done. Of course he shifts all the blame to Eve, but he does admit that he ate the fruit. Then God goes to Eve.
“What is this you have done?” Again, she shifts the blame to the serpent, but she does confess that she ate the fruit as well.
Now it’s all out in the open. Yes there will be consequences for their actions, but now that they have come out of hiding and have confessed their rebellion, God can get about the work of restoration.
Quickly we read that God has a solution to this problem. Gen 3:15 -“15 And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.”
The problem of sin would not go away. In fact, it would only get worse to the point that the desire driving mankind was only evil all the time. (Gen. 6) God’s chosen people would constantly rebel and turn to worthless idols made with human hands. He would save them from oppression and then they would respond by spitting in his face.
But, as it turns out, God knew all along that we would constantly rebel against Him. Consequently he already had a plan in place to deal with our selfish choices. At the end of the story we learn this: “All inhabitants of the earth will worship the beast—all whose names have not been written in the Lamb’s book of life, the Lamb who was slain from the creation of the world.” (Rev 13:8)
God had a plan all along. And His plan was to send his own son to sacrifice his own perfect life to deal with the problem of our rebellion once and for all.
Jn 1:14 says: “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” The Word of God which existed from all eternity with the Father became flesh and blood. The one about whom John the Baptist would testify: “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” (Jn 1:29)
The reason God did this was to reconcile the debt we have accumulated with our rebellion and make it possible for us to once again be in a right standing with Him. “All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. 21 God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”
Jesus lived the life we couldn’t live and died the death we should have died. The reason He is the only way to God is because He is the only Son of God. The reason He is the only way is because he lived the only life that refused to rebel against God’s higher purposes. At the greatest moment of temptation, when Jesus was being tempted to go his own way instead of the cross, even begging the Father for a different way, he ultimately chose to submit to God’s higher ways even though it would cost him his life. Life would have to die so that we who are dead could live.
I don’t know if you see it, but God went to great lengths to fix what was broken. Even though you and I are the ones who rebelled against God, chose our own ways instead of His ways, even though we tried to hide from God so we wouldn’t have to deal with His response, he still came calling to us all, “Come out, come out wherever you are.” He left his throne and His kingly crown and came to the jungle of thorns we had created with our own sin and called out to us: “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
He’s still calling. Will you answer?