By His Grace and In His Word Ministries has moved!

You should be automatically redirected in 6 seconds. If not, visit
and update your bookmarks.


The Great Revelation, Part 3

Today our study of 1 John is going to be interactive. There will be Scriptures for you to read and questions for you to answer. I hope that you will take some time to engage God's Word and dig a little deeper.

Ready? Let's dig in. A third way that God reveals Himself to us is:

III. The ultimate revelation of God to us was through His One and only Son, Jesus Christ.

"And he who sees Me (Jesus) sees Him (God) who sent Me.”
John 12:45 (NKJV)

God made Himself known to us through His Son, Jesus Christ. Jesus is God’s Word of life (John 1:1; 1 John 1:1) to us. To know Jesus is to know God. To know God is to know eternal life with Him. God proved His love for us by sending His Son to earth to die the horrible death that each one of us deserved. Because of sin, the perfect relationship with God that man originally possessed was lost. The only way our fellowship with God could be restored was through the death of Christ.

Let’s take a little field trip back in time to the Garden of Eden to find out how that perfect relationship with God was broken. This garden was paradise on earth. I don’t think that we can even begin to imagine how beautiful it was, but let’s try. Close your eyes and just listen. What do you hear? Can you hear the birds singing in the distance? Do you hear the wind whistling through the trees? Do you smell the sweet aroma of the flowers? Have a seat under that big tree over there. Maybe you’d like to dip your feet into the cool waters of the river. Isn’t it the most magnificent place you have ever seen? Can you believe that God, Himself, planted every flower, every tree, every bush just for Adam and Eve to enjoy? He knew exactly what would make them happy. Life for Adam and Eve was good; in fact, it was very good. They had everything they needed. They lacked nothing.

Now turn around. Look to your left. No, your other left. Now straight ahead. Do you see those two beautiful trees standing there side-by-side? It’s the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. These trees were placed in the garden to give man a choice; a choice in whether to simply obey or disobey God’s instructions. The tree of life would sustain man’s physical and spiritual being. The tree of the knowledge of good and evil would do the complete opposite; nothing about it would sustain man; it would eventually bring about physical death and ultimately separate man from God.

~God gave Adam specific instructions about eating from these two trees. Read Genesis 2:16 & 17. What were Adam’s instructions?

The Garden of Eden was not only for Adam’s enjoyment, but it was also his responsibility to tend to it and keep it up. I guess you could call him the grounds keeper. After God took Adam to his knew home (Genesis 2:15), He saw that Adam was the only one of his kind in the Garden. Adam was alone and needed a helper. Out of Adam’s own body, God made for him and woman to walk along side him and be his companion, his wife, his friend (Genesis 2:21-25). We don’t know exactly how long Adam and his wife, Eve, were in the Garden, but at some point Adam must have shared with her God’s instructions concerning the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil because when she was confronted by Satan she knew that she wasn’t suppose to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

~Read Genesis 3:1-7. Did Adam and Eve obey God’s instructions?
Satan embodied a serpent in order to approach Eve without her being alarmed. The apostle John identifies this serpent as Satan in Revelation 12:9 and 20:2, as does Paul in 2 Corinthians 11:3. He was very wise in his advance to her because had in not been uncommon for Adam and Eve to have conversation with the animals, I think that she would have taken off like greased lightning. Satan had his eye on Eve and knew the perfect time to attack her. He had probably been watching the two of them for a while and knew that he could get to Eve, and her heart, with almost little effort. I tend to think that she was alone when Satan approached her. He specifically targeted Eve because he knew that she was the weaker one and needed the protection of her husband. He knew her weaknesses and used those to his advantage. Satan, first, made her question God’s instructions, “Did God really say you must not eat the fruit from any of the trees in the garden?” (Genesis 3:1, NLT, italics added) He got the wheels in Eve’s mind spinning. She began questioning the truthfulness of God. Did God really mean what He said? Maybe He didn’t.

Not only did Satan make Eve question God, he also flat out lied to her face.

“Then the serpent said to the woman, "You will not surely die. For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil."
Gen 3:4-5, NKJV, italics added

Satan wanted Eve to think that God was keeping for Himself something that would be better for her than all she already had. He wanted her to think that God was holding back on her. Satan also implied that she would be like God in that she could do whatever she wanted to do. God did, in fact, know something Adam and Eve didn’t know and He was trying to keep them from it by giving these instructions. God was trying to keep them from sin. He was trying to keep them from a life of evil; a life that would separate man from God. Eve was convinced that eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil would be beneficial to her.

~What happened when Adam and Eve disobeyed God? Read Genesis 3:6-24
Because Adam and Eve chose to disobey God, they, along with Satan, suffered some serious consequences. For Eve, and all women, (Genesis 3:16), because she gave birth to sin for the human race, she would have pain in birthing her own children and in raising them. Raising children is hard because they inherited a sin nature from Adam and have an inborn desire to rebel against what in true and right. Her relationship with her husband was meant to be one of joy and blessing, but now her husband would rule over her, by God’s design (Ephesians 5:22-25), which would cause conflict in the marital relationship. Adam, and all men, (Genesis 3:17) would now have to work for everything that had once been provided for him by God. Through sweat and hard work, he would labor to provide for his family.
The serpent, having been used by Satan, faced consequences for his actions. “So the LORD God said to the serpent, ‘Because you have done this, you are cursed more than all cattle, and more than every beast of the field; on your belly you shall go, and you shall eat dust all the days of your life (Genesis 3:14, NKJV)’”. The serpent would spend the rest of his life lower than all the other animals having to crawl around on his belly. Snakes now represent all that is hateful, sickening, and low. They are identified with disgrace and avoided with fear.
Satan, himself, had consequences of his own to deal with for deceiving man. There will be hostility between Satan and his seed, his followers, and woman and her Seed, Jesus Christ (Galatians 4:4), and His followers. Through a woman would the ultimate destruction of Satan come, for he will be defeated once and for all by Jesus Christ, who would be born of a woman (Luke 1:30-33).
God gave Adam and Eve the choice to obey His instructions or to disobey. I’ve often wondered why God even gave them a choice. Why did He make two trees? Why not just the tree of life? God loves us and wants us to freely love Him. He doesn’t want us to love Him because we have to. Wouldn’t you much rather do something you want to do than be made to do it? God didn’t want a bunch of robots walking around programmed to love Him; He wants people whose hearts are truly committed to Him and that love Him completely.
Yes, Adam and Eve had some serious consequences to pay for their disobedience, but as bad as having pain in childbirth and childrearing and having tensions within marriage and having to labor to provide for your family might be, there is nothing worse than being eternally separated from the One who created you. Because of their sin, they were banished from the perfect life and fellowship with God they once knew. There was no longer a perfect world because sin had tainted it.
~How could man’s relationship with God be restored? We'll answer that question next time.

1 Lovely Thoughts Shared:

Victoria said...

You have a gifted way of helping your readers to experience the truths in the Word! I'm so glad we found one another!