Bible Passage(s): Genesis 3: 1 - 10
Memory Verse: “6 When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. 7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; ……" Genesis 3: 6 – 7 (NIV)
The title of this message reminds me of a novel by Professor Wole Soyinka, the Nigerian Nobel Prize Winner of 1986, of the same title. However, whereas the book is about his prison notes, when he was incarcerated by a military regime at the start of the Nigerian civil war. My take here however, is to examine how man lost fellowship with God and how the negative consequences of this continues to plague man, even in our contemporary times.
The story in the reference Bible passage above is about how man died due to disobedience in the Garden of Eden. Man died the day and moment Adam and Eve took the forbidden fruit from the tree of life in the middle of the garden and ate it; contrary to the directives of God.
Eve succumbed to the treacheries of Satan and ate the fruit, she also gave it to Adam, who also ate it! Their eyes were thus opened and they realised that they were naked!
One may want to ask, how can one die when his eyes were opened? Hitherto man and woman had been living in the garden, enjoying the ambience, peace, security and comfort of it without any care in the world! Their needs were provided for! They knew no sickness nor illness. They were dead to sin, but alive to holiness and righteous living; worshiping and glorifying God in the beauty of His holiness. Alas, the moment they ate the forbidden fruit, their lives changed and they realised they were naked, hopeless and helpless! Man left the “security and safety of ignorance and transited into the hazardous state of knowledge of good and evil! They died to a life of ease and translated to that of labour, hardship and distress on all sides!” Man lost fellowship with God and became dead to the ever-loving care and attendance of God. Now he has to labour and struggle to get those things he had once taken for granted in the garden of God! The Lord pronounced judgement on man: “Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat food from it all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return’’ Genesis 3”17
Man since then has struggled to maintain a relationship with God through righteousness and holiness. He has continued to struggle for the mundane things of life and is never satisfied. His needs are no longer enough to ‘satisfy him’, rather he continues to chase shadows, gathering wealth, thinking in it lies his security and insurance against poverty; “… people walk around as shadows. Surely, they busy themselves for nothing, heaping up possessions but not knowing who will get them. Psalm 39:6 (Berean Study Bible)
The Man died! The centre can no longer hold for him! The only recourse is for him to reconnect with His God and maker. Repent of his sins and live a life of godliness with contentment. I enjoin you today, restore peace with God by surrendering your life to Him and accept His Son, Jesus Christ as you Lord and Saviour. Then the Prince of Peace Himself will restore you to the company of His beloved and grant you peace which the world cannot understand.
May the Lord bless and keep you. May He make His face to shine upon you and be gracious unto you. May the Lord lift up His countenance upon you and give you peace, now and forevermore. Amen.
Father in heaven, please give me the peace that the world cannot give in Jesus mighty name. Amen
©Bola Olowe, Grace Leadership Foundation. Saturday 1, June 2019
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Therefore the redeemed of the Lord shall return, And come with singing unto Zion; And everlasting joy shall be upon their head.