It is interesting to reflect upon the nature of the way in which various relationships are expressed in the first part of this reading. God challenges the man as to why he is hiding from Him and he replies that he was afraid due to his nakedness. God then asks, “Who told you that you were naked?” The man then blames the woman for leading him to eat of the forbidden fruit. God then challenges the woman and she blames the serpent for having tempted her. Both of these accusations can also be seen to have an implicit passing of the blame to God as well. In the case of the man he explicitly states that it is the woman He, God gave him who tempted him. In the case of the woman it is not as clear but the fact that she blames the serpent, a being formerly created by God, is enough for our purposes. Neither the man nor the woman expresses anything to make us believe that they are interested in taking responsibility for their actions. Isn’t that often the way with sin?
Through the dynamic operating in this story, when combined with the following passage detailing the ‘punishments due for the sin,’ we have a summary of the effects of sin in terms of human life and its various constituent relationships with God, one another and the rest of creation. Each of these relationships has now moved from a place of perfection to one of brokenness as a result of the primordial sin of Adam and Eve! Here is one of the ultimate lessons of the first few chapters of Genesis: We have moved from primordial chaos to the creation of a perfect world which has now descended back into a new form of chaos as a result of sin. This is the world in which we know live and have to battle towards redemption and eternal life in the New Creation that will be inaugurated in the mission of Christ.
The author(s) of these texts have used very simple illustrations to present some very profound truths to us. It will be well worth the time to reflect and meditate upon these texts seeking to understand them more deeply in terms of the lessons God wants to teach us through them.
Heavenly Father, sometimes the depths of truth is difficult for me to understand. Increase my ability to deepen in the knowledge and love of you and your Words of Life.