Then to Adam He said, “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree about which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat from it’; Cursed is the ground because of you; In toil you will eat of it All the days of your life."
We saw in Genesis 2 that Adam was a willing moral agent. This is a theological way of saying that Adam was able to make choices—both good and bad. When Adam chose to abdicate his God-given leadership responsibilities and eat from the tree, he willingly chose evil. Because God is good, He must punish evil.
God punished the serpent, the woman, and the man, drastically changing their lives (and the lives of their descendants) forever. Going forward, life would be difficult. Adam and Eve’s sin had driven a wedge between themselves and God. Their previous life was forever gone—they sinned and thus had to live with the consequences. One of the consequences of their sin was death.
What was originally meant to bring Adam blessing (his work and his relationship with Eve), now brought hardship. Evil intruded and broke down what God had intended to bless Adam. It is helpful for us to pause and locate when evil began, because it absolves God of evil. He did not choose evil; His creation did. Nowhere in the Bible is God ever held responsible for evil. God gave us a choice because He loves us, and we chose to let the intruder in. Yet in His grace, God has given us boundaries to restrain evil. He is never absent, even when we make poor choices.
- What changed about work for Adam after he disobeyed God and ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (Gen. 3:17-19)?
- Why is it important that God is with us, even in the midst of evil we create?
- Ask God to forgive you for the evil you have done and receive His grace.