Faithlife Sermons

897 Biblical Characters - Adam & Eve (Gen.2.1 - 3.24)

Characters of the Bible  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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Looking at Adam & Eve

- How great it is to live under favourable circumstances
- Enjoying pristine conditions, under no stress, everything going the way you want it to go
- Mechanics, carpenters, plumbers, designers, technicians, builders, homemakers - every profession all have their good days and their bad days
- No doubt you’ve heard of the Midas touch – originally, this saying was based on the myth of King Midas who prayed that everything he touched turned to Gold
- This saying (having a Midas touch) doesn’t mean that everything you touch literally turns to Gold, but that everything you put your hand or mind to, goes really well – is productive/fruitful
- In the building industry - it applied to whatever you were working on going really well
- It all falls into place; measurements are accurate; the fit is perfect
- But you have those days where everything you touch goes pear shape
- Some days are stinkers & you wished you could start the day off again
- John Denver had a song that went “Some days are diamonds, some days are stones”
- Now think of how you react in those differing moments!
- You know as well as I do that the moments when everything goes to plan & falls nicely into place are moments of great joy, peace, sometimes relief & blessing
- You also know that those moments when nothing goes right are moments of, sometimes, intense frustration, annoyance & anger
Q. Do people bite your head off in moments of great joy & peace?
- They don’t do they
- You get your head bit off when they are intensely frustrated, annoyed & are even angry
Q. As we consider the situation of Adam & Eve, what was their original environment like?
Q. Was it harsh, creating frustration & annoyance or was it rather pristine?
- Here’s the thing – they were in a pristine environment – sin had not entered the world at this stage so life was a breeze
- Adam & Eve enjoyed a sovereignty over the earth that was unequalled among all the creatures God had created
- They were provided for by God & both the man & the woman had nothing but fruitful days – oh, what bliss
- I’m embarking on a series I’ve entitled, “Exploring Biblical Characters”
- What I’m particularly interested in is asking about what God is telling us through these people? - About Himself & about the person or people’s response during their life
- Hopefully, we will be able to learn much from the way God interacted with these people
- How He responded to them & how they responded to Him
Q. What can we learn & how can we live our lives in such a way that we can know with confidence what would be pleasing to God?

​1. God Brings Mankind to Life

- The first biblical characters we look at is Adam & Eve
- I will not be dealing with every detail of a biblical characters life, but selecting important snippets that relate to the objective about what important things God wants us to know
- We begin with God creating Man – the male & the female - & that all He created, He declared to be very good
- Two genders was His creative plan and designation
- Those two come together in a marriage bond of fidelity to one another
- This is His plan & we know that many are kicking against this as if it does not matter
- But let us look at a crucial starting point when looking at the creation of the man
Genesis 2:7 NASB95
7 Then the Lord God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.
- Man is a created being
- This means that we are not, in ourselves, eternal (we cannot live forever) nor omniscient (we cannot know everything) nor omnipotent (we are not all powerful)
- We owe to God our existence, our dependency &, therefore, our loyalty
- We are made from the earth, thus being tied to creation – tied to the a material world
- Women are also from the dust since her connection is that she was made from the man of dust
- Remember, God took a part of the man & fashioned it into a woman
- Many people have no idea of the great importance of these statements – they are axiomatic to everything you think about male & female & our relationship with God
- The tie between the man & the woman is utterly unique
- We both are of dust – as God said to them after they sinned – “dust you are & to dust you will return”
- There are no comparisons we can make between ourselves & God other than the fact that we have been made in His image & likeness – we are not God (full stop)
- God makes the form of man from the dust of the ground & then breathes into him the breath of life - & only then does he become a “living being”
- There are two significant factors here: breath & soul
- God breathes into the man the breath or spirit of life
- The word breath is a word that is associated with life
- Man became alive - an animated being
- When the spirit of life is pulled, there is death
Genesis 6:17 NASB95
17 “Behold, I, even I am bringing the flood of water upon the earth, to destroy all flesh in which is the breath of life, from under heaven; everything that is on the earth shall perish.
- What we need to cement in our minds is that God has given us life & we possess it by His will & power
- We do not possess life in & of ourselves, but over & over again people subtly live as if they think they do
- You have the man coming to life & he becomes a living soul
- Translated in most Bibles now as living being
- For years, we have been living under the powerful influence of the Gk philosopher Plato who taught that the soul was immortal
- However, if we understand “living being” rather than, as in the KJV, “living soul” then the “soul” does not have this so-called eternal existence apart from God (we are living beings)
- You don’t get told this much, but animals are souls too
Leviticus 11:46 NASB95
46 This is the law regarding the animal and the bird, and every living thing that moves in the waters and everything that swarms on the earth,
- And every living being or living soul that swarms on the earth
- That word for Adam becoming a living being is exactly the same here
- Those other living beings are fish & animals – there it is in the Bible
- If this is not enough, have a look at Lev. 24...
Leviticus 24:17–18 ESV
17 “Whoever takes a human life shall surely be put to death. 18 Whoever takes an animal’s life shall make it good, life for life.
- Humans & animals both are referred to there as souls but we are to think of souls simply as living beings
- A human life is regarded as more valuable than the animal
- That is why nothing can make up for the intentional killing of a human other than the murderer having to give up his life
- Yet, you can make a substitute for an animal that has been killed – another animal is given to the owner who suffered the loss of his dead animal
- My point is that the life of both the animal & the human is given by God & sustained only by Him
- Notice the key here – God is the One who gives us an everlasting future
- We exist because He has given us life
- Which is why the resurrection of the body was so foreign to Greeks
- Remember Paul in Athens where he was debating with Greek philosophers & they scoffed at the thought of a resurrected body
- Now you may be thinking about why this is so important to raise
- It is important for us to understand that we only exist through God
- We have nothing eternal about us apart from God
- “In Him we live, move & exist” Paul quoting back to those Greek philosophers
- We are not God & we are not eternal which means we depend on Him for everything - which is why we also see the “tree of life” being provided for by God which allows Adam & Eve to live forever
- These are not way out principles but core values you need to understand

​2. God Calls for Obedience

Q. If you could ask yourself the question, “what is the one thing that is important to God” what would it be?
- I think we have the answer here in Genesis
Genesis 2:16–17 NASB95
16 The Lord God commanded the man, saying, “From any tree of the garden you may eat freely; 17 but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you will surely die.”
- God is wanting man to assume his rightful place in relation to God
- That is expressed through his obedience to God
- Guess what – the man is not God
- The man has absolute blessing – he has freedom to take & eat from whatever he likes, except from the one thing – isn’t that interesting
- He cannot eat from the tree of the knowledge of good & evil
- Now, there is theology behind this
- The one thing you cannot aspire to Adam is godhood
Genesis 3:22–23 NASB95
22 Then the Lord God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of Us, knowing good and evil; and now, he might stretch out his hand, and take also from the tree of life, and eat, and live forever”— 23 therefore the Lord God sent him out from the garden of Eden, to cultivate the ground from which he was taken.
- You are not My equal – I am Creator, you are creature
- I am eternal, you are temporal – I am Spirit you are part of this creative realm
- Adam had to know his place before God & keep to it
Q. Was he robbed of anything he needed? No
- God provided for him in many ways & gave him purpose & meaning to his life
- He ruled over God’s creation; He names the animals
Q. What went wrong that Adam took from that which God had told him to leave alone?
Q. Was he unable to understand the instruction?
Q. Was he somehow disadvantaged in any way that led to his indiscretion?
- Well, what we know here is that Adam lived in a pristine environment
- There was no sin, no weakness, no hardship & no stress
- This makes the decision of the pair to reach beyond their humanity to equality with God all the more damning
Q. How did it all happen?
- Temptation came to the woman through what Christians understand to be Satan
- Temptation occurred in a sin-free environment
- This means that temptation is not automatically associated with sin
- Of course, temptation leads to sin, but temptation is not sin in itself
- It’s how you handle it that is most important
- Jesus experienced temptation yet, He did not sin
- Now Adam received the command of God & would have conveyed that to Eve
- This is confirmed by the fact that God called out Adam on what happened
Genesis 3:9–12 NASB95
9 Then the Lord God called to the man, and said to him, “Where are you?” 10 He said, “I heard the sound of You in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid myself.” 11 And He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?” 12 The man said, “The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me from the tree, and I ate.”
- Yes, he had the responsibility but gladly passed the buck to the woman
- It is interesting how the serpent got to Eve
- She was not the primary recipient of the command so, in a sense, she was like us who are acting by faith in what is told to us by the recorded witnesses in Scripture
- It’s always easier & more certain when you have been told face to face what to do by the person concerned
- This becomes the very crack in the door the serpent uses
Q. Did God say…are you sure...? Well I got it second hand & I’m assuming that Adam correctly instructed me
- Yet, Eve did not actually reply exactly with what God had said...
Genesis 3:1–3 NASB95
1 Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, “Indeed, has God said, ‘You shall not eat from any tree of the garden’?” 2 The woman said to the serpent, “From the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat; 3 but from the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat from it or touch it, or you will die.’ ”
Q. Did God say that? Not exactly – God didn’t say that they cannot touch it, only that they shall not eat of it
- Now that may not mean much, but it does show that she did get the message but did not perceive it accurately
- Perhaps, she just did what many people do – make a law stricter than it needed to be
- You have a great example of that with how Israel filled the Sabbath day with many many laws of their own to satisfy God’s one command to take one day of the week off
- Still dealing with the woman, the serpent blatantly contradicts what God had said
- You will not surely die! – I mean you’ve got it wrong woman - God is lying to you
- Moreover, the reason He is lying to you is that He wants divinity all to Himself
- He doesn’t want to share power & He doesn’t want any rivals
- But if you just take that fruit, hahaha, you will be like God knowing good & evil
- The NT makes this issue of obedience to God paramount in the comparison between Adam & Jesus & between the way of salvation & the way of condemnation
- The apostle Paul contrasts in Rom. 5 the disobedience of Adam with the corresponding condemnation of death with the obedience of Christ & the corresponding life that comes through Him
Romans 5:19 NASB95
19 For as through the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous.
- Let us understand clearly, that obedience to God is us confirming that we are not his equal
- Remembering the Lord Jesus & the position He took
Philippians 2:5–11 NASB95
5 Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, 6 who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. 8 Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. 9 For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

​3. God Reveals The Problem – Desires for Equality with Him

- It is hard to disagree that the most talked about & most pushed for idea in today’s western world is equality
- It’s everywhere to be seen
Q. Shall anyone dare argue against it?
- Well, I think we must – as those who believe in God and His creation
- The first thing we need to remember is that we have received the knowledge of good & evil – do you think that’s a good thing?
- God wanted to keep that from us - for good reason
- We are not God & can never be Him – how can we possess & process matters that are beyond our capacity?
- Look what happened to Adam & Eve
- They received the knowledge of good & evil & what did they discover?
- They were naked – nakedness was not evil, but it became that to the pair who didn’t have the capacity to determine what was good & evil
- We have become like a computer that is dropped in water
- So that which is good looked evil to them & subsequently things that were evil looked good
- So what we now have is massive confusion about what is good & what is evil
- Good can seem like evil & evil seem like good
Q. You ask how could anyone agree with babies being aborted & how people can think it is necessary & good thing? You have the reason for that distorted & warped thinking answered there in Genesis
- You cannot go back now that good & evil has now been received by the human race
- People – you & me - the entire human race – is possessed by a knowledge that we cannot undo
- That is why nakedness in public is now wrong – we all have this distorted view of good & evil so nakedness will always be wrong
- The hippies & new age people who think they can go back to a pristine utopia are flat out wrong – you can’t – we have that distortion & we must now live in a way to accommodate our misconstrued perceptions
- God has given us His word & here is our solace
Q. How can we determine what is truly good from what is evil?
- God has given us His word – He gives us the truth - the reality
- Jesus says in His prayer to God – “your word is truth”
- Those who live apart from God & who reject Jesus Christ live by the standard warped sense of good & evil - God had something to say to Israel about that
Isaiah 5:20 NASB95
20 Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!
- It is the revelation of God - His special revelation in the Scriptures which allows us to truly know what is good & what is evil
- What we are presently seeing now in our society is a full on attack against God
- The whole transgender/homosexual thing is directed against God
- It is He who they rail against because they refuse to bow to Him
- They refuse obedience & are determined to live as if they are gods with the right to say what is & what isn’t
- This is why Christians are being attacked & harassed
- We uphold God as creator & we maintain that we need to honour Him in the areas of marriage & sexuality - as He designed it to be
- Nietzsche expresses the movement of this rejection of God nearly 150 yrs ago
- But what Nietzsche was concerned about was the hole – the vacuum of public morality & what might fill it – when God is put out of the picture
“God is dead. God remains dead. And we have killed him. How shall we comfort ourselves, the murderers of all murderers? What was holiest and mightiest of all that the world has yet owned has bled to death under our knives: who will wipe this blood off us? What water is there for us to clean ourselves? What festivals of atonement, what sacred games shall we have to invent? Is not the greatness of this deed too great for us? Must we ourselves not become gods simply to appear worthy of it?” -- Friedrich Nietzsche
- What happens to public morality when such a Person as God is removed from the world? - & although Nietzsche approved of getting rid of God from the world, he was concerned about what would replace Him, concerned about an a-moral world (meaning no morals)
Q. What is Genesis teaching us?
- It is teaching us that man’s desire is to be God – to be equal with Him
- These choices are still before everyone today
- But the choice is now located in the second Adam – the One God sent to bring us back into a right relationship with Him (what Easter is all about)
- Do you want to be associated with Adam’s lost-ness & fallen humanity with their distorted perception of good & evil?
- Or with the 2nd Adam – following in his obedience & hence the blessings that flow through His obedience?
Q. This all relates to Jesus Christ – He has now become the definitive pivot as to whether men & women will life forever – as God originally intended – or will die in their sin & be eternally separated from God
Q. What choice have you made?
Matthew 12:30 NASB95
30 “He who is not with Me is against Me; and he who does not gather with Me scatters.
- If you have not decided for Christ, Jesus says that you stand against Him - be clear on that
- Remember, obedience is what God cares for & He is now commanding you to believe in Jesus Christ as the only One who can restore your currently lost position back to God
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