Devotionals Genesis

What Happened

One of the tragic things about a family is that when the parents and in particular the husband and father does something bad, it affects the marriage and the whole family. Often it is not his fault directly. It might be due to circumstances that whatever happens, happened.

Take borrowing money from a bank. It is relatively easy to get a loan and perhaps even far easier to get a credit card or two, or four … and max out on the limit. The pleasure of whatever you have purchased, be it clothing, furniture, an airline ticket, holiday, school books, groceries, etc. is short lived, but the loan is long lived with evil interest rates! When you can’t pay the card’s lowest payment, it’s not too bad because you use the other card or cards. Paying two cards each month and then skipping those to pay other cards off every two next month becomes the habit. Then, suddenly the hot water cylinder bursts and you don’t have home insurance or you get pulled over because your tyres are pretty smooth … and you can’t pay for the geyser or the tyres and your cards are maxed out so you miss the next two months mortgage payments and you stop the medical insurance … and … your economic world collapses, the bank repossesses your home and car. You can’t pay school fees. You don’t have money for a taxi or bus to get the children to school. You have to move in with your financially struggling parents. The problems are endless.

What you did (rightly or wrongly or unfortunately) affects your whole family. You substituted for your family. In a far deeper and relentless manner, that was what happened in the Garden of Eden.

We are almost ready to start Genesis chapter three … a chapter many, not just liberals, want to tear out of the Bible. For them, if creation was not true, then the Garden of Eden is not true. If the Garden of Eden is not true, then sin is not true. If sin is not true then the human race does not have an inherent disposition to immorality … and then as a race we are intrinsically good people.

Now if we are good people, then we don’t need a Savior, because there is no sin! If there is no sin and no Savior needed, then we don’t need a Bible and the Church and then man may do as he does without a conscience … and then there is no accountability to God, because then, if God exists, man is good, having a clear conscience, not needing a Savior and having no fear of what will happen after death because then there is no hell.

All of this might seem so strange to you as a Bible Believing Church Member, yet that type of argument is in the mind of those who reject the Genesis account of chapters one to eleven. Please read:

Ge 3:1 Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made.

Immediately we read this verse, some might question whether there was a real snake that speaks. Issues that are raised follow something like this …

(1) Is there something called good and evil? Implied here is the question about whether there is a God or gods. Mythology running through many ancient religions speak of pantheons of gods, good ones and bad ones, fighting ones and peace making gods. In their morality, they reject sin and holy!

(2) Is there a real devil? I can’t see him or it, they say. If there is one, where does he live and where did he come from? If he exists, does he have power to cause the havoc the Christian Church says he is able to do and did?

(3) If these questions are answered in the positive, is there such a thing as sin? Following this, if sin exists, is there something called holy? Back to point one above.

(4) Then, if God exists as the Bible says, why is He angered with sin? How does sin affect Him? In any case, if He is supposed to live in a place called heaven, distant from this little earth we live on, how does what we do affect Him?

(5) If heaven is real, is hell real? The Bible says hell is a place of suffering, pain, agony and relentless eternal punishment, So, if hell is real, who will occupy hell and who will occupy heaven?

(6) Does God has the authority to send people to hell?

(7) Is it unfair for God to send some to heaven and others to hell?

(8) All this seems so frightening. If heaven and hell are true and real, how does one escape hell and go to heaven?

This is not rambling! Rather, these questions set the tone for our study in Genesis chapter three. Although we won’t answer each question individually, we shall answer them all as we open up the many doctrines that flow from this chapter.

Just that we understand … I believe there is one true, living God. He has an enemy called the devil (satan, the ancient serpent, Lucifer). Where God is good and holy, the devil is sinister and wicked to the core. This follows to say there is sin and the wicked will be caste into hell whilst those who follow Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior shall be escorted into God eternal heaven. All this comes not from fantasies or children’s story books. It comes from the Bible.

I need to repeat something in different words. There are people who dispute the first eleven chapters of Genesis because of chapter three. This mind set has infiltrated the Church extensively. The underlying thought is that people are intrinsically good. They reject the Garden and the serpent because it refutes the concept of people being intrinsically good. They teach that Genesis three is mythology, just a story to get to the part of Jesus.

I mentioned once, and feel it needs repeating again. The reason Jenny and I, together with another couple, started a Church soon after our conversion was because our eldest child’s Sunday School teacher rejected the concept of sin. If there is no sin, there can’t be a devil and if there is no sin and no devil there is no hell. Therefore you cannot traumatize children by telling them that Adam and Eve were real people and that they sinned and because of them we, their descendants are sinners and sin is against God and hell is meant for sinners.

From this time onwards, I learnt that the denomination in question followed Liberal Theology. Not only did they reject Genesis 1 to 11, they rejected most of the Old Testament as well as everything New Testament except for the Gospels. The Gospel they interpreted to Jesus just being a man, no incarnation, virgin birth, no actual miracles, no substitutional death and no resurrection. But then, for them, why would you need Jesus, God incarnate to be a Savior from sin when there is no sin, devil and hell?

As we start Genesis chapter three, with verse one in particular, I want to argue that there is a real devil who is God’s enemy. I want to argue that people are not intrinsically good, but sinners … lost sinners and at enmity with God. I want to argue there is a real hell, reserved for all who reject the free offer of God’s free gospel in Jesus, through which He offers free salvation through pardoning sin. I want to argue that Genesis chapter three as well as every word of the whole Bible is genuinely inspired, inerrant, infallible and authoritative … and the only rule for life if one wants to life a God glorifying life in this world and the next.

Thank You Father that we do not need secular thought and interpretation for true realities. Your Word is sufficient! It is all we need. Help us as Your people to love and use Your Word, trusting it as our only guide for salvation, life and eternity. Amen.

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