In this Old Testament devotional, we're reading through Genesis 3:7-14 together. I've included examples of the 3 questions you can read to help you better understand the Old Testament, plus application questions and a prayer!
Sin is broken relationship with God and with other people. After Adam and Eve committed sin, their first instinct was to hide from one another by making clothes to cover their naked bodies. Just hours before, the couple had been “naked and unashamed!” Yet after committing sin they scrambled to find a way to hide themselves. Then, they tried to find a way to hide from God in the trees.
In relationship with God, we receive the ability to love others fully, since we are fully loved. But sin breaks our relationship with God. It separates us from God. And because we are separated from God, we are also separated from other people. Separated from God, we lose the ability to love fully, because we are caught up in our own desires, shame, and insecurities. Sin causes us to become preoccupied with hiding our deepest shame.
Sometimes we hide our shame by blaming others. When God confronted Eve about the sin, she blamed it all on the serpent! She conveniently forgot that it was partly the “desire of her eyes” which led her to take the fruit. When God confronted Adam, Adam blamed “the woman that you gave to be with me” for his choice to eat the fruit! Both man and woman hid from the truth that they had played a part in their own downfall.
What does this passage reveal about God?
While Adam and Eve were hiding, blaming, and avoiding, God remained in faithful pursuit of his children. “He called out to them, “Where are you?” (v.9). God is loving and merciful. He is always faithful to pursue the ones He loves. God loves us even when we separate ourselves from His love.
What does this tell us about our relationship with God?
Even when we’ve messed up, when we are walking in sin, God continues to seek fellowship with us. He calls out to us, longing for us to come back into His presence instead of hiding. We can confidently pursue a relationship with God because we know He longs to be with us. When we feel like hiding, we have to remember just how far God will go to rescue us from ourselves. There’s nothing that we can do that can ever separate us from God’s love. Yet even as we are in relationship with God, we have to pay attention to how we are responding to sin. Are we letting it push us further away from God, or using it to repent and draw closer to Him? The choice is ours.
How does this passage point to Jesus?
Jesus’ mission was to restore our relationship with God, as well as our relationship with other people. In the Old Testament, because the nation of Israel kept failing to love God, they also failed in their mission to be a blessing to other nations. Through a restored relationship with God, we are empowered to love, forgive, and bless others through the power of the Holy Spirit working within us.
“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones God's messengers! How often I have wanted to gather your children together as a hen protects her chicks beneath her wings, but you wouldn't let me.” -Matthew 23:37 (NLT)
Sin causes us to hide from God and from other people. In the past, how has sin separated you from other people in your life? How has God worked in you to heal and redeem this separation?
God continues to seek us and chase after us, no matter what. How did God continue to pursue you even when you didn’t pursue Him?
Sin can cause us to blame others and to avoid the truth about ourselves. Pray that the Holy Spirit would reveal any parts of our hearts and our lives that are not fully surrendered to God.
Lord, thank you for sending Jesus so that we could be reunited with You forever. I confess that at times I have let sin separate me from You, and from other people. Like Adam and Eve, I confess that I have hidden and avoided the truth about myself. Sometimes I have even blamed other people for my own issues. Father, ask for Your forgiveness. Thank you for your mercy and for the power to live a life of love for others. Help me live in relational fullness with You and with the people around me. Amen.