In part 1, we looked at the nature of sin - it is doubting God's word, disbelieving His goodness and desiring his position. In part 2, we explored the consequences of sin - that shame, conflict and death enter the world and we still can't get rid of them today. Fortunately, that is not the end of the story. Even at the very moment that sin enters the world, God has good news about a solution.
Relational sin is not transactional, you can’t pay it back with good deeds, it only happens if the offended party forgives.
God comes to Adam and Eve graciously, he doesn't have to ask where they are or what they've done (He already knows!), He is graciously giving them a chance to repent.
The storyline of the bible is a story of grace. We see God consistently and relentlessly pursuing a rebellious people, extending grace towards them.
Don’t read genesis 3 and go away thinking the solution is to try harder. We are totally dependent on his grace
Ephesians 2:8-9 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – 9 not by works, so that no one can boast.
The solution to sin is not in ourselves, it starts with God’s grace
In v21 God clothes them with animal skins. An animal must have been sacrificed to do this - a sacrifice took place in order to cover their shame.
This would go on to become a pattern through the Old Testament, with regular animal sacrifices reminding people that the result of sin is death
This sacrificial system culminates in Jesus
Hebrews 10 11 Day after day every priest stands and performs his religious duties; again and again he offers the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. 12 But when this priest had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God, 13 and since that time he waits for his enemies to be made his footstool. 14 For by one sacrifice he has made perfect for ever those who are being made holy.
God clothed Adam and Eve, replacing their pathetic efforts to cover their shame (fig leaves) - God clothes us in Jesus righteousness gal 3:27
As soon as sin enters the world, God preaches the gospel! - there is someone coming to sort this out once and for all. Someone who will be wounded (you will strike his heel) but in the process will defeat Satan, sin and death (he will crush your head).
Our sin starts with doubting and questioning God’s word - what does God do? sends his living word, Jesus, into the world to speak to us clearly about what he is like.
We daily doubt God’s goodness and what does he do? comes into the world as one of us to show us what true unselfish goodness looks like, doing good to his enemies, at the cost of his own life.
At the heart of our sin is us trying to dethrone God and put ourselves in his position. In response, Jesus steps down off his throne and puts himself in our place, living the perfect life we could never live and dying the death we should have died, exchanging our sin for his righteousness.
We live with the shame of sin hanging over us.Jesus died a shameful death Heb 12:2 For the joy that was set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. What was the joy set before him - us!
We live with the conflict that sin causes between us but we read in Ephesians that His purpose was to create in himself one new humanity out of the two, thus making peace, 16 and in one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility.
We try to shift the blame and justify our sin. Jesus took the blame so that we can be justified.
We turn our back on the author of life and as a result are headed towards death. Jesus died and then rose again - conquering death, assuring us that our future, in Him, is to live forever. Where do we live forever? In a new creation where we encounter the tree of life that Adam and Eve were banished from the garden to prevent them eating?
Rev 22:1-2 Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb 2 down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations
We can eat freely from that tree as we live in a world that has no pain, no tears, no suffering, no death!