Reading through Genesis 3 today something struck me. How devestating must it have been to be Adam and Eve on the day when sin entered the world? The events of this story were surely by far their worst day. Let’s look a little deeper at the story so many of us find so familiar.
God created all the beauty of earth- the plants, sky, sun, and creatures. Then He Himself planted a garden in Eden and placed the man there to live. (Genesis 2:8) Can you imagine what that garden was like? Since the creative Creator of the universe planted it, it surely was the most beautiful garden in all of history. Can you imagine the colors? Or the taste of the best and freshest fruit? There is a reason we use the word Eden to speak of paradise. It surely was one. It even says in the text (Genesis 2:9) that God put every tress that was pleasant to the sight and good for food there. Then there was a river to water it all. Magnificent.
After placing Adam in this paradise, next God created a beautiful helpmate for him in Eve. He blessed them and told them to multiply and fill the earth and rule over creation. He gave every wonderful plant to them as food. And everything was VERY GOOD. There was no sin to separate them from God. I wonder how much they talked to God? Did they take walks with Him? They knew what it sounded like when He walked in the garden so this must have been a regular occurrence.
But then came sin. Adam and Eve chose to eat the fruit. Immediately their eyes were opened and they knew they were naked. There was something to be ashamed of. Can you imagine how they felt sewing the fig leaves together to cover themselves? I’m sure it was rushed and anxious. Then they heard the sound of God and hid themselves. After a conversation and curses, God kicked them out.
Can you imagine the loss they felt that day? Not only were they now ashamed. They were cursed. Can you imagine how they felt when pain coursed through their bodies for the first time? The first time they stepped on a thorn? The first time Adam had to sweat to feed his family? Being reminded multiple times that you were made from dust and you would return back there someday? Then knowing that an animal had to be killed for you to have clothing to cover your body. Did they vomit at the thought? These were the animals that Adam just named and now at least one of them was dead because of him.
Then they were kicked out of their home. The most beautiful place on earth was now guarded by an angel with a flaming sword that missed nothing- he turned every way. So they could never go back there and reminisce on their first home. They just had to feel the devastating loss and move forward.
And the worst was the emptiness of being separated from the presence of their Creator. No more walks in the garden to talk with God. It was them alone now. God was still surely there but not in the same way. He was now distant. They would never again hear His footsteps and welcome them. They would be ashamed. Can you imagine as they told this story for the rest of their lives how it made them feel? It was the beginning of the most disgraceful story in history- how the created would reject the Creator. And they were the ones who started the shame and loss. They started anxiety and pain. Their choice brought death and depression and every bad thing. Their choice would ultimately lead to the death of the One they used to walk with.
Surely Adam and Eve lived with regret, shame and pain the rest of their lives. What a lesson for us. May we daily count the devastating cost of sin and look to our Savior’s grace to save us from it.