Genesis 3:1-9, 21-24 has a perspective we need to accept. It says that Eve thought the forbidden fruit was “desirable for gaining wisdom.” In other words, she thought she’d be wise if she knew evil as well as good. But she and Adam gained only knowledge, for no wisdom exists by disobeying God, however much we learn about sin. There’s only guilt, fear and punishment. The very first result of sinning was the guilt of nakedness that forced both to hide from each other. Unfortunately for them, the same guilt caused them to hide from God, a guilt that only an animal’s blood could eliminate.
Having unsuccessfully warned them not to eat from the tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, God banished them from Eden to keep them from eating from the Tree of Life. That prevented them and us from living forever in sin.
The Bible account rings a tocsin at our culture. For we’re still trying to find peace with ourselves by education, science and technology. When we don’t find it from the above, we resort to personal creativity. One lady began a Kindness Rocks Project: rocks with short, nice, kind messages. Another lady makes a living as a landscape designer turning back yards into showplaces of personal self-worth: “I’m pretty inside and out.” San Diego U-T, 8/12/17
Part of this reflects the narcissism of Americans. We consider ourselves “beautiful” and want our surroundings to reflect it. Part of it is the expansion of educational classes in many careers never before available.
Understand the spiritual implications. Like Eve, many consider that what they want, desire and crave is what proves their self-worth. Any effort at creating something soft, quiet and helpful are subliminal messages to ourselves: we really are worth something. We’re really trying to convince ourselves: we’re O.K. Give us time and we’ll get life right. Let our creative urges flow long enough and we’ll correct the wrongs that our alienation from God have caused. (This isn’t how the unsaved talk or think; it’s the Biblical message they need to hear.)
The Genesis text warns us: we’re sinners needing God’s forgiveness in Christ to recover what Adam and Eve’s sin lost. We’re never going back to Eden on our own. God set cherubim and a flaming sword to keep people from Eden. And the way back only re-opened through Jesus Christ at his death.
Without God we’ll always create outside stuff to seek inner peace. While God warns us we must seek peace with him that cleanses our sins before we have personal self-worth. Then we won’t need the fluff we now rely on to give us meaning. For we’ll be the testimony, not of our goodness, but of God’s grace; not of our value but of the Master’s all-embracing perfection.
Consider this also: whenever we take it on ourselves to prove our worth, we seldom find anything we do is sufficient proof. Where confessing our sins and being baptized into Christ automatically provide proof of worth—by grace alone we’re saved—we can never on our own be sure if we DO enough, create enough, think highly enough to earn acceptance.
Books at: www.createspace.com. (Go to search, dropdown to store, Virg Hurley.)
Apologetics book: Their Own Best Defense, Volume 2, Part 1
Books also at www.amazon.com (Virgil Hurley & Virg Hurley)
New book: The Parables of Jesus at www.createspace.com/7164741