Old Testament – From Genesis to the Prophet Jonah
If everything that God created is good, where does evil come from?
The answer can be found in Genesis’ second story, the creation of Adam and Eve.
On day six, God created Adam from the soil of the earth and after breathing into his nostrils, he became a living being. He then placed him in The Garden of Eden whose setting was the beautiful lush pastureland of Mesopotamia through which the Tigris and Euphrates rivers flowed. God told Adam, “You may freely eat fruit from every tree of the garden, but you must not eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will surely die”. (Genesis 2:16-17)
God then created Eve from a rib in Adams side, as his companion and partner to share the beautiful delights of the garden. Adam celebrated saying, “This one, at last, is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; this one will be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man”. (Genesis 2:23)
When a serpent shrewdly encouraged Eve to eat fruit from God’s “tree of knowledge” saying, “Surely you will not die, for God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will open and you will be like divine beings who know good and evil,” Eve ate its fruit and offered it to Adam, who did likewise.
Immediately, Adam and Eve knew they had sinned against God, the first sins of mankind, the original sins. They even felt ill-at-ease in each other’s presence and, for the first time, realising they were naked they sewed leaves together to cover their bodies!
Adam and Eve had willingly disregarded God’s single “Don’t do” instruction. Instead, they chose to disobey the one who gave them life. So, access to the “tree of knowledge” was taken from them. God expelled them from the Garden of Eden, Adam to sweat and toil as he tilled the earth for their food and Eve to suffer in childbirth. (Genesis 2:15-3:24)
Today, our broken relations with others, thus God, is the result of the same sin, human disobedience. Just like Adam and Eve, we continue to disregard the God who made us!
Lord Jesus, I pray that I will not give in to temptation today but seek the help of your Holy Spirit and proudly choose to walk only your ways. Amen.
Prayer: An Invitation (Dietrich Bonhoeffer – Adapted)
O God, help me to fully accept your invite,
and concentrate only on you:
I cannot do this alone.
In me there is darkness but with you there is light.
I am lonely but you do not leave me.
I am feeble in heart but with you there is help.
I am restless but with you there is peace.
In me there is bitterness but with you there is patience.
I do not understand your ways but you know mine.
O God, restore me to liberty,
and enable me so to live now
that I may answer before you and before me.
Lord, whatever this day may bring,
may your name be praised forever.