“No one ever bought a ticket to see a bullfighter get away from a bull.” This was my consolation, without thinking mind you, to a bullfighting student that had just got freight-trained by a large and angry bovine. The sad part is its true. No one goes to a rodeo wanting to see someone get run over, but they certainly don’t want to miss it if it happens. The collision, the tension is what keeps people coming back. If everyone who tied their hand in and nodded their head stepped off after 8 seconds, then it would become boring. With each and every ride, every bullfight, there is a certain amount of unpredictablity and danger. WIth each story the same rings true. Every story has conflict in it and just like the collision you see above, the fault can be placed squarely on me.
In Genesis 1 and 2, everything God had created was good. In the case of Adam and Eve, it was very good. God had created man and woman with some specific purposes that were good for them. He created Adam to work in the garden, to rule and care for the earth, to lead the relationship with Eve. With Eve, she was created to bring children into this world and to help and support Adam. Together they were created to comfort and support one another, to become one flesh, a to walk and talk with God. All these things were very good when God created man and woman.
Enter the snake.
Adam and Eve were in paradise, living with God, when the snake showed up.
His first words to Adam and Eve reveal his mission of distortion: “Did God really say…” Satan’s mission is to distort, warp, and alter the things of God. Satan questions the words of God (Gen 3.1) and then he questions the goodness of God (Gen 3.4-5). Satan’s charge, that God is keeping the good stuff from Adam and Eve, pushes the right buttons and they succumb to the temptation. This story is a little too familiar. How often do we feel like God is hoarding the good stuff? How many times have you felt like God was killing your fun with His rules? Sex in the confines of marriage…huh? Serving the Lord with your finances? Laying your life down for others? Focusing on others needs instead of our own?
Often the thought in the back of my mind is similar to the thought Satan gave to the first couple…”You better take care of yourself because God won’t!” So we choose to go it alone. Follow our own desires. Make our own rules. Choose our own path.
This path runs the opposite direction of God. And I, like Adam and Eve, take the fruit, take care of ourselves, and disobey God. The collision happens and the tension arrives in the story. A bad collision between a holy God and His very good, yet independent creation.
This collision turned everything upside down: work (2.15) became toil (3.17); ‘be fruitful’ (1.28) became ‘increased pains’ (3.16); ‘naked and no shame’ (2.25) became ‘covered and hidden’ (3.7); and ‘walking with God in the Garden’ (3.8) became ‘banishment’ (3.23). Man (and Woman’s) purpose had become tainted with their disobedience. The tension has arrived in the story.
The collision happens in Genesis 3 for the same reason it happens today, we don’t trust that God knows what He is doing. I caused the collision in Genesis 3. I was there with Adam and Eve…I ate the fruit…and take it from a guy who has been in a few collisions, there are always consequences.
For the wages of sin is death…(Romans 6.23)