Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, you know the story. But in just 6 verses of the Genesis telling of Adam and Eve comes the whole point and purpose of the Bible and Jesus Christ our Savior. It also explains the relationship between men and women, mankind and the devil.
Adam and Eve
14 And the Lord God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life:
In the previous verses God asks Adam and Eve questions as to why they ate the fruit of the tree. They hear God calling and are afraid and find themselves naked and exposed.
“Who told thee that thou wast naked?” God asked Adam.
“What is this that thou hast done?,” God asked Eve.
God dealt with the devil first, the instigator and cause for the sin and downfall. God didn’t ask the devil a question. God didn’t allow the devil to speak. Jesus did the same thing with devils and unclean spirits.
“And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him” (Mark 1:25)
Now whether or not the serpent was a literal or allegorical snake is for future discussion. But the etymology of the Hebrew word for snake is to mean “hiss” or to “whisper” and to practice divination. This describes and is in line with the very methodology of Satan.
This runs consistent with the Book of Revelation description of the devil and the serpent. “And the great dragon (derived from Genesis description of serpent) was cast out, that old serpent (snake, crafty), called the Devil (slanderer, false accuser), and Satan (adversary, incites apostasy), which deceiveth the whole world.” (Revelation 12:9)
In any case, as punishment God caused an upright (implied) devil to be doomed to crawling on its belly and eating dust. This condition would epitomize contrast if you take into account of the glorious and powerful descriptions of the devil in Isaiah 14 and Ezekiel 28. An angel, beautiful, rich and powerful now reduced to crawling on his belly as a reptile.
The Devil and Hatred
15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.
“And Adam called his wife’s name Eve; because she was the mother of all living” (Genesis 3:20).
“And I will put enmity between thee and the woman and between thy seed and her seed”. God put hatred and hostility between mankind and the devil. This brings up several points. First off all power and all things belong to God.
“The LORD killeth, and maketh alive: he bringeth down to the grave, and bringeth up.” 1 Samuel 2:6
“The Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord..” Job 1:21
“The LORD before thee; and will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will shew mercy on whom I will shew mercy.” Exodus 33:19
“From him (God) cometh my salvation’ Psalms 62:1
All things come from God. By his mercy He either gives or takes away.
Some believe that the “seed” is a singular and not a plural. The belief is that the seed deals strictly with Jesus Christ and not with the elect which is to follow. John Calvin the 16th century theologian had stern words to the latter thought.
“There is, indeed no ambiguity in the words here used by Moses; but I do not agree with others respecting their meaning; for other interpreters take the seed for Christ, without controversy; as if it were said, that some one would arise from the seed of the woman who should wound the serpent’s head. Gladly would I give my suffrage in support of their opinion, but that I regard the word seed as too violently distorted by them; for who will concede that a collective noun is to be understood of one man only ? Further, as the perpetuity of the contest is noted, so victory is promised to the human race through a continual succession of ages.” John Calvin
The salient point from this verse and for the entire Bible is this. Because of this warfare between mankind and the devil is the reason for the virgin birth of Jesus Christ. Man was removed by divine intervention to create Christ our Savior with no trait or trace of Satan within. Christ is pure of sin.
Jesus said, “Hereafter I will not talk much with you: for the prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me.” John 14:30
“it (the seed) shall bruise thy head (devil), and thou (devil) shalt bruise his heel (Seed of Eve).
The seed of Eve is Jesus Christ and more. It is the Church of Jesus Christ, the elect of Christ.
“And the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen.” Romans 16:20
16 Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.
After dealing first with the perpetrator of the sin, God moves next to the accessory of the sin, Eve. Sorrow is now introduced unto the breathe of life, Eve that once knew nothing but bliss. And the first place of sorrow is in the very battleground of the devil, her seed, her baby. This battle is in full force today and is no better evidenced as in legalized and moralized abortion. Over 1.2 million babies are aborted within the life giving mother each year in the United States on an annual basis.
“thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee”. By all accounts Adam and Eve were equal in the Garden of Eden. But man now will not only have preeminence over Eve but she will desire him. In its most basic meaning, the woman will long for, crave, to be needful of the man. This is the exact same word used to describe sin waiting at the door in Genesis 4:7, “And unto thee shall be his desire”.
17 And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;
18 Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;
19 In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.
And finally God addresses Adam. Although the sin originated with the devil and Eve, Adam knew better. He knew God’s commandment of not to eat of the fruit but he did anyway. It was a willful act of rebellion. Adam then advanced his sin by lying to God about it and then attempting to shift the blame and responsibility on Eve. Sin has now permanently entered into the skin of mankind.
“Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned” (Romans 5:12).
The ground, of which man was formed and every tree that was pleasant to the sight and good for food is now cursed. Sorrow, sweat, turmoil replace what once was pleasurable. This is not the beginning of work for God had already made Adam busy.
“And the Lord God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it” (Genesis 2:15).
But now pain in life to live and “unto dust shalt thou return.” Man’s lot was death, the grave, dust. The dust, the very thing God commanded the devil to crawl upon his belly and consume.
Praise God for the virgin birth of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior!
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