I'm Glad You Asked - The Fall: Genesis 3
Series: I'm Glad You Asked
February 26, 2023
The Fall: Genesis 3
God created man and woman as said it was "very good". Genesis 3:1 reads, "Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, "Did God actually say, 'You shall not eat of any tree in the garden'?" The serpent was Satan and he put doubt in Eve's mind. She responded with twisting the truth of what God actually said, and eventually, Adam and Eve ate the fruit, and shalom was broken on the earth. We are not as we were intended to be; we are fallen.
Romans 5:12 shows us the Doctrine of Original Sin - "Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned." In other words, we are not sinners because we sin; rather, we sin because we are sinners.
The doctrine of the Fall seems really negative, but understanding original sin makes it possible for humanity to thrive:
It sets all of us on level ground:
No one is saved by their virtue or goodness. No one is saved due to a prestigious position of power. By insisting on human sinfulness, Christianity puts us on the same playing field: the rich and poor, the educated and the illiterate; all of humanity has the same fate at birth.
Unfortunately, the pride of man does not want to accept this. This is the other side of the Imago Dei because we are broken. We all have the same disease and need the same salvation regardless of what the sin is.
We must be made into the Imago Christi - image bearers of Jesus Christ.
Understanding original sin protects us from Utopian fantasies:
All of the increased funding of education and justice will fall short without a transformation of a man's heart through Jesus because every gain, however real and important, will likely be tainted at some point by sin and selfishness until Jesus comes back to restore the world.
Edward Oakes said, "we are born into a world where rebellion against God has already taken place and the drift of it sweeps us along."
In the Age of Enlightenment, Western intellectuals rejected the biblical teaching of creation and replaced it with the theory that nature is our creator. The biblical doctrine of sin was thrown out (a belief holdover from the Dark Ages). No longer would people live under the shadow of guilt and moral judgement, and no longer would they be oppressed by moral rules imposed by an arbitrary and tyrannical deity.
This makes us ask, "if the source of disorder and suffering is not sin, then where do these problems come from?" Ultimately, Enlightenment thinkers would reduce sin to social constructs and self-help becomes the means of salvation. This way of thinking has proven to be irrational and unlivable.
Consequences of not having a healthy understanding of the Fall are:
- We lose sight of our desperate need of a Savior.
- We promote solutions that are incapable of success.
Change in our culture starts with each of our hearts. Pray that your heart will be soft and that you will be strong like a lion and gentle like a lamb. Be humble. Be sensitive to the Holy Spirit. A movement of God's Spirit starts with confession of sin. Jesus said of His heart in Matthew 11:29 , "I am gentle and lowly in heart." Let's remember that we are sinners in need of Jesus every single day.