In the Beginning
Oh-so-many of you have bought the lie that women were cursed from the beginning of time because of Eve. It's all Eve's fault, isn't it. Men use it as an excuse to try and lord over us, and women use it as an excuse to be rebellious. Society likes to tell the story as a way of making her look dull and ignorant, and so she needs to be punished, held back, or looked down upon. I beg to differ. Care to join me and find out why I disagree? Follow along...
Let’s talk about Eve for a while, because…wow, there is a lot to talk about!
What did Eve see? Genesis 3:6
When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining knowledge, she took some and ate it…
Of course we already know that the serpent twisted God’s words to confuse Eve, but it bears acknowledging that the lie he told her was a common lie most people everyday try to get away with: a half truth that doesn’t divulge all the necessary details. He says to her, “You will surely not die.” Well, sure, not immediately. He then explains to her that when she eats the fruit she will be like God, knowing good and evil (vv. 4-5).
Eve, as lovely and good as she was, saw good even in evil. She is the epitome of what we are to be like. As what God is like. God sees through the evil. He sees the heart and that’s what He judges.
So there are three things Eve saw: nourishment, beauty and knowledge.
The enemy can always turn something beautiful into something ugly, as he did to Eve. He knew her innocence and desires. He saw her vulnerability and joy. Eve doesn’t get defensive with the serpent, she politely says, “We may eat from the trees in the garden…” So she tells him, in her own sweet way, “What you’re saying isn’t entirely true, because God gave us all of this.”
Let me just say that I understand the deception of the serpent here. I’m not overlooking that. That’s something entirely different. We’re not talking about what he did, or even what she did, but rather, what Eve saw. Her reaction to what she saw was based on good intentions. It was good for food, it was beautiful, and she could be more like God!
Creation: Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. Roger Vandersteine
Let’s remember, too, that Adam and Eve literally walked with God daily. They took strolls together, they talked to one another, they sat together. There wasn’t a question of, “Was that God talking to me?” They saw Him. (And as we know, their punishment was to never know that again.) Eve probably—most certainly—loved God. She probably desired to be with Him and talk to Him. She probably looked up to Him. So it would only make sense that Eve would want to be more like Him.
The serpent suggested things to Eve that were natural for her to want, and felt she possibly needed. I’m not making excuses for Eve by any means; but let’s try to figure out her character instead of focusing wholly on her character flaws.
Eve didn’t see a scary, ugly, disgusting serpent. That comes later. What Eve saw was yet another beautiful creature created by God. A creature that God let Adam name and take care of. So why would Eve doubt this creature? Why would she think it would deceive her or lie to her? She wouldn’t! She had no idea at this point what evil was, or what evil was capable of doing. But she would learn incredibly fast—and not just from the serpent!
Eve instead saw the goodness of the serpent. She saw the goodness of the fruit. Can you see the goodness in others, even in those who aren’t always so good? I tell you quite honestly that God admired Eve for this, and I can prove it!
You see, God, too, sees the good in all of us, even when we are awful. Even when we are full of sin and possibly even a bit evil. Jesus sought the sinners, not the saints. Jesus saw the good in them. The prostitutes. The tax collectors. The murderers! Don’t believe me? Think Mary. Think Matthew. Think Saul (Paul). Now…think about seeing the good in the bad.
Eves Enemy and Excuse
Everyone is always so quick to judge Eve, but let’s not forget that God didn’t tell Eve not to eat from the tree of knowledge, He told Adam before Eve was even created! So Adam must have been, then, the one who relayed the information to Eve. Did he? We don’t know. It doesn’t say.
Genesis 2:16: And the Lord commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.”
So when the serpent says, “Did God really say…” Does Eve know for sure? Here’s where it gets tricky, because not only does the serpent get Eve to doubt God, but he probably had Eve questioning Adam, too (probably rightfully so, we’ll soon discover). And we also know that Adam was there when this was all happening, because it says so at the end of verse 6. “She also gave some to her husband who was there.”
Now let’s focus on the next part of Eve’s story. Her enemy—but WAIT! The serpent wasn’t her only enemy. She was deceived by one, but betrayed by another.
So now we know that Adam was there with her when this all took place. He heard the entire conversation, never once stopping her or rebuking the serpent. What was Adam thinking? “Hmmm…that does make sense. Let’s see what happens if Eve eats it.”
I can’t say for sure that’s what he was thinking, but what would you have thought? Shouldn’t Adam have been there to help Eve? Isn’t that what they were made for each other for, to be each other’s helpmate? Help Eve, Adam!! She needs you right now…more than ever. She needs your help! But he says and does…nothing!
It gets worse. Not only does he do nothing to protect or help her, but he then throws her under the bus! Who is Eve’s real enemy here. the serpent or Adam? I’d say, both! And what’s Eve’s excuse? “The serpent deceived me, and I ate it. (Genesis 3:13) Many insist that this is where the saying, “The devil made me do it,” comes from. But does she? Let’s reexamine what she says, because maybe she’s not blaming anyone…but herself.
Eve is very aware, suddenly, of her apparent weakness. She realizes she has been duped, not once, but twice. She was betrayed by the one and only person she knew and felt she could trust, and he all too quickly found fault in her and accused her of his own mistake. Not only did he not take responsibility for her when he should have, but he refused to take responsibility for his own behavior.
Imagine what must have been going through her mind. In her compassion, she handed it to Adam to eat, because he hadn’t stopped her from doing it, so she gave it to him. Not seductively, not even temptingly. She figured if he didn’t say anything, then it must be okay, because God didn’t tell her not to eat from it, He told Adam. But then to hear Adam tell God that had He not sent her there, it wouldn’t have happened?! How awful for her! The sadness that must have swept over her. The shame she must have felt.
When God asks her what she did, she tells him the truth. I was duped God. I admit it. I let the serpent deceive me. I did it. Not once does she say to God, “Adam was there, too! He could have stopped me. He heard what was going on and he ate it too.” She could have, and in my eyes, she should have. I would have. But that’s just me.
But Eve…well, again, let me reiterate what I stated yesterday: she was good. Instead she said, “I was deceived. I ate it.” I can see her saying it with her head hung low, guilty and ashamed.
Do you think God saw that she was being honest and honored her? You bet cha!
We know God banished Adam and Eve from the Garden as part of their punishment, but worse yet, they were banished from His direct presence, which changed how we know God and where He dwells forever.
God’s intention for Adam and Eve (and us) was for them to walk and live with Him forever. But their sin forged a deep disconnect from God, and a gaping hole that has left generations angry and resentful of their sin. If only we could experience just one day with God the way they had…
Eve confessed her sin, admitted that she had been deceived by the serpent, and ate the fruit from the tree of knowledge.
Please read Genesis 3:14-20.
Now, go back to that scripture circle the words “because you” in verse 14, and then circle the word “cursed” in the same verse. Go to verse 17 and circle the words “because you” and the word “cursed” in the same verse.
Verses 14-15 shows us God’s curse on the serpent. “Because you have done this, cursed are you…” In verses 17-19 we hear God’s curse on Adam. “Because you listened to your wife and ate from the tree about which I commanded you, ‘You must not eat of it,’ cursed is the ground because of you.”
Wow! Adam got the brunt of the punishment here! You, you, you!! Look at what God said to him again. YOU listened to your wife over Me!? I told YOU not to eat from it. And because YOU didn’t listen to me, YOU are responsible for the ground being cursed!
God wasn’t blaming Eve for tempting Adam with the fruit. On the contrary. God was angered that Adam didn’t do what he should have done by protecting Eve in the first place, but then blamed her for it. God says, “How dare you blame her. I am the One who told you…”
So we’re aware of the curse on the serpent and Adam. Read verse 16: “To the woman he said…” Praise God!! Do you see it? God did NOT curse Eve. He makes her the creator of life, as God can do, too!! God let Eve be more like Him because He was aware of her desire to be more like Him. He gave her an amazing gift! Her name even means, living. Verse 20 says Adam named her Eve, “because she would become the mother of all the living”!! She is the mother of all living. All!
He took from Adam and made Eve. He then took from Adam and gave to Eve. He cursed Adam and blessed Eve. She got a little bit of what she had hoped for when she ate the fruit. The serpent told her she would be like God, and because she wholeheartedly wanted that, God honored her. She was truly able to be more like God. Women are more like God then men! We are creators of life. He enables us to bring life into the world. He trusts us enough to do that! How incredibly amazing is that?! And why do you think he trusts us to bring life into the world? Because Eve was honest.
Now don’t be confused with the last line: “Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you.” Please read this with Eve’s new eyes and God’s loving Spirit, because God is showing Eve how to love in this statement. God gave another piece of Himself to her: love.
“He will rule over you,” does not imply he will have the upper hand; in fact, read again God’s curse to Adam! He will work hard to provide for his wife—the mother of all the living. No longer is God the sole provider for them. God instructs Adam to work the land for the food he’ll need. And he has to provide for Eve and their family. Since she is the mother, Adam no longer has the luxury of doing nothing but wandering the Garden all day anymore. When you think of a ruler—as David was a ruler…as God is a Ruler—consider that rulers are caretakers of their people.
So God says to Eve, “You may have painful childbearing, but you will be a creator of life, and you will know love, and love your husband, and he will work very hard to take care of you.”
Why do you think that was? Because Adam was supposed to have done that in the first place. God put Adam in charge of everything, but all the while made it easy for Adam. But since Adam neglected his duties, and instead tried to push the blame not only on God, but the woman too, God said, “Now you will know real responsibility. I thought I could let you do this without knowing the trouble and hard work it would take, but you apparently took advantage of my kindness, and Eve’s. So now you will work hard and you will sweat and toil. And I tell you the truth, you are no better than the dust from which I made you!”
Cursed are you, Adam (man). Blessed are you, Eve (mother of all the living: women).
You can now see the value of women in God’s eyes. Don’t take this lightly. Don’t even begin to minimize what that means in our marital relationships.
As a society we have tried so hard to degender ourselves. Women are acting like men; men are acting like women. I think it’s important, though, that women know how to fix stuff on their own, and I also believe men should learn and accept the fact that they also need to participate in household chores, besides taking out the trash. Men should be more active in their children’s lives, rather than a stand-in when mommy’s not around.
Even if you’re not a believer in Christ, I honestly believe you will find a lot of value in this website. Of course I would never encourage you to take God out of the picture, but if you need to in order to gain some wisdom on how to revive your relationship, by all means, take what matters to you and use it. My prayer, however, is that you will put God smack dab at the center of your marriage, because I honestly believe that’s the only way real love can survive the harsh realities of the world.
So, in conclusion, are you ready and willing to rev up your relationship, and take it to a whole new level?