We all know the story of Genesis 3 when Eve and then Adam ate from the tree that God had placed in the Garden next to the Tree of life; God forbade them to eat of that tree. Yet, after consultation with that famous serpent, they went for it anyway. As we have already seen, their having eaten from the forbidden tree did not change the fact that they were bearers of God’s image, but it certainly changed how they viewed it, and of course there were consequences to their actions.
They now knew both good and evil; that will certainly change one’s thinking about a lot of things, in fact, it might just make a person’s thinking evil.
In this chapter, we find out why 2:25 is there; it turns out that it wasn’t as random as it seemed at first. They had been unashamed, and then they disobeyed God and were ashamed. Exactly what they were ashamed of is something that is open for debate, and many have indulged in that debate over the centuries. Personally, as I view this chapter I see several apocalyptic elements, and if this were a study of Genesis per se, I would get into them in detail, but since this isn’t a study of Genesis, I will only say here that naked or not naked is one of those elements, and that nakedness is a powerful metaphoric component in Scripture, particularly in the Old Testament, representing our having been created in God’s image on the one hand, and our separation from Him on the other.
God goes searching for Adam, who has made for himself a covering of leaves, and hidden from God in the trees, along with Eve. Of course you can’t hide from God, who finds them, and has a little chat with them. As a result of this chat, God pronounces curses on the serpent, the woman and the man, and has them removed from the Garden forever. Interestingly, another one of the apocalyptic elements is found in 3:15 which is the first messianic prophecy.
We have completed our exploring of the Garden, but we still have leads to be followed as we consider the implications of our having been created in God’s image, and we will head off in that direction next time. Before I wrap up this post, there is also a “side trip” that we could add to our exploration; it is a “related” adventure which is to explore nakedness as a Scriptural metaphor. Experience has taught me two things about this line of inquiry: First, that some are uncomfortable with the entire subject and second is that others like to draw conclusions from it that are not warranted. I can only tell you that this topic isn’t anything close to salacious, in fact it is about as far from salacious as you can get. Anyway, since it is uncomfortable for many, and I am sensitive to that, I will only do the “Bonus Trip” if a goodly number of you ask for it, and then it will be a second string of posts at a different time of day, one or two a week, and clearly marked, and it would only begin after we complete our exploration of the image of God, so there will be no confusion.
So, if you would like such a series, please let me know by comment or email, and with that, I’ll see you next time!