Sermon Transcript: The Problem With Sin

10/11/2020 Jeff Schwarzentraub 40 min read

- Before I begin today, I just wanted to make a couple comments. A few weeks ago, I made some comments about where you send your kids to school, and I just wanted to clarify some of the things that I was trying to say at the time. What I wanted to say was this, you as parents are the foundation for your kids, and you're responsible for raising them. Whether you choose public school, private school, charter school, Christian school, or homeschool, you as the parents are responsible for what you do. I know in the heat of the message, as I was trying to proclaim, I went back and watched what some of you told me to go back and watch, and realized not everything that I was trying to say was coming out at the time. What I was trying to say, is that in many places where you go, the Word of God is not being heralded, where you cannot go into a public school and teach about two genders, you cannot teach about marriage, you cannot teach about God's six day literal creation, and I was responding to that. But I want you to know as parents, you have the liberty to send your kids wherever you want. I have great friends that send their kids to public schools. Kids, if you're in the public school, you are a light in the public school for the Lord Jesus Christ. If you're a teacher in the public school, you're a light for the Lord Jesus Christ. Wherever you go, you're a light for the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen? So, I wanted to clarify my comments because they didn't come across the way I was trying to communicate them, and I appreciate your grace and your forgiveness for not being able to articulate what I was trying to say. With that, let's go before the Lord and let's seek Him today. Let's see what He has to say to us from Genesis chapter three. Would you pray with me? Lord Jesus, we love You, and we bless You for who You are, and Lord, we give You all the praise. Lord, we thank You for Your living and active Word; that every time that we open it up and that we faithfully proclaim Your Word, You speak, because we know that faith comes through hearing, and hearing from the Word of God. So Lord, be helpful to me as I preach today, and be helpful to us as we listen, and Lord encounter us, interact with us. Lord, let us believe what Your Word says, and then Lord, let us by faith put into practice the very things that You show us individually to do. Lord, this is a topic that we don't often like talking about, but Lord, it is such a freeing topic if we'll deal with things the way that You want us to, and we thank You for the grace that we find in the Lord Jesus Christ, for all that You do. And now all God's people who are gathered, who desire to hear His Word proclaimed, who desire to believe what God says, and by faith to do what He shows you, would you agree with me this morning by very loudly saying the word, amen, amen.

- Amen.

- When it comes to Genesis chapter three, I think about how it would be titled by different people. For instance, I think if Charles Dickens was titling Genesis chapter three, he would say, "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times." I think if NASA was titling Genesis three in light of Apollo 13, it would be "Houston, "we have a problem," right? I think if Paul Harvey were talking through Genesis three, and he would say, "And now the rest of the story." No matter where we get, we get through Genesis chapter one and two, and we see God's awesome creative acts, we see His interaction with us, we see that we're the crown of His creation, that we're His image bearers, and everything is going fantastic until we hit chapter three. And then we have to deal with this concept called sin. And for most of us, when it comes to sin, we say, "Well, I've dealt with sin, I know what sin is. "Everybody sins. "It's all right, Jesus died," and we move on. But we don't take long enough to take a look at some of the consequences and problems that our sin brings, and that's what the text is going to talk about today. So I encourage you, open up your Bible to Genesis chapter three. We're gonna start in verse eight, make our way through the chapter. And we're gonna take a look at three problems, that is pervasive with your sin. Three challenges to your sin that you have. In Genesis chapter three, starting in verse eight. You'll remember where we left off, that they were covering themselves with fig leaves, and in verse eight, here's what happened. "They heard the sound of the Lord God walking "in the garden in the cool of the day. "And the man and his wife hid themselves "from the presence of the Lord God, among the trees "of the garden. "Then the Lord God called to the man and said to him, "'Where are you?' "And he said, 'I heard the sound of You in the garden "'and I was afraid because I was naked, so I hid myself.' "And He said, 'Who told you that you were naked? "'Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you "'not to eat?' "The man said, 'The woman whom You gave to be with me, "'she gave me from the tree and I ate.' "Then the Lord God said to the woman, "'What is this you have done?' "And the woman said, 'The serpent deceived me and I ate.'" See how this story opens up? It's really interesting because when we leave, in Genesis chapter three and verse seven, you get the idea that Adam and Eve are still fine in their sin. As a matter of fact, they sin and they realize that they're both naked, and so what they do is they take fig leaves and they make clothing for themselves, and for each other, and then they just cover up their differences. And it's as if life is just gonna go on as normal. Yeah, I sinned. Yeah, this is not what I want. Yeah, this is uncomfortable, but hey, we'll just cover this up and we'll just keep living life. But verse eight starts out this way, "They heard the sound of the Lord God "walking in the garden." Here's the first problem with sin. The first problem with sin is that you can't hide. You can't hide your sin. You can't hide in your sin, because the Lord God knows everything. God knows everything. The theological term would be omniscient. It means there's nothing that God doesn't know. We think oftentimes that we can sin and we can cover it up, and nobody's really gonna find out about that. Our wives are never gonna know. Our husbands are never gonna know. Our children are never gonna know. Our parents are never gonna know. Our teachers are never gonna know. We can just keep going on with life as is. And we go to great lengths to try to cover up our sin. We go to great lengths to mask whatever we are. We often hang out with people that struggle with the same sins we do, so that we can kind of take the mask off for awhile, and we all, you struggle with that, I struggle with that too. Oh, thank goodness. But we rarely like to deal with it. Now here's a truth that you need to know. What you need to know from God's word, and Moses told the Israelites this from Numbers chapter 32 in verse 23. "You can be sure of this. "Your sin will find you out." How many of you know your sin always finds you out? You can't hide it. The illustration I use all the time, it's like having a blown up beach ball that you try to hold under the water. You can't do that forever. It's not fun. When you go to the beach, nobody has like competitions for how long they can hold a beach ball under the water. I mean, it's not a fun competition. You know, maybe you lay on it for a while and then it gets slippery, and it comes up. You can't hold your sin down. And even if you can, you have to realize that God sees everything anyway. There's nothing that you ever do, or think, or feel, that God doesn't know. He already knows it all. Psalm 139 tells us that, "Everywhere you go, God's there, "and He knows everything before a word's on your tongue, "He knows it completely." Before something's gonna come out of your mouth, He knows exactly what you're gonna say. In Psalm 139, verses 11 and 12, he says this, "If I say, 'Surely the darkness will overwhelm me "'and the light around me will be night, "'even the darkness is not dark to You, "'and the night is as bright as the day. "'Darkness and light are alike to You.'" Even if you say, "I'm gonna keep this in the recesses, "I'm gonna pack this down, I'm gonna put this "in the darkest dungeon. "Nobody's ever gonna see this. "Nobody's ever gonna know about it." It's as if broad daylight to God. Have you ever said, or have you ever heard somebody say something like this? "I'm taking that to the grave with me. "I'm taking that to the grave. "Nobody's ever gonna know." You know, what's challenging about that statement? Even if you take it all the way to the grave, the second you die, who are you gonna stand before? The Lord God who saw it all. You don't want to harbor sin. You don't want to hold onto sin. And here's the problem with sin, when we sin, instead of confessing our sin, our first move is cover our sin. Don't let anybody else know that I did this. Don't let anybody else see that I did this. How do I mask what I've done wrong, so that nobody else can find out. Here's the news this morning, God already knows. He not only knows what you did, He knows your motive for doing it. He knows everything about it, and you're accountable to Him. There's accountability, and so what you see in this passage, as I think about Genesis chapter three, if somebody were just catching me off guard and say, "Hey, what's Genesis chapter three about?" And I told them about Adam and Eve sin, and then you said, "Well, what did they do?" I'd say, "Well, they hid from God." But really, they didn't. They sinned and they covered themselves in the hopes to continue life just the way that it was. It wasn't until the Lord God came. And in verse eight, "They heard the sound of the Lord God "walking in the garden in the cool of the day, "and the man and the wife hid themselves "from the presence of the Lord among the trees "of the garden." So here's their great plan. They've masked themselves, they've covered themselves. They're saying, "We'll just get on with life." Now they hear God come and everything changes. You ever seen the difference in little kids when they play and they know they've done something wrong, and they're just playing with other kids, and it's no big deal till a mom or dad show up, and then there's terror, right? That's what's going on here. "Hey, we sinned, we know we sinned, "no big deal, no big deal." But now there's accountability. They hear the Lord God walking, and so what do they do? Now they hide, and they hide among the trees. Now think about this for a second. The God that sees all night as if it's day, that's everywhere all at the same time, is that really who you want to play hide and go seek with? Good strategy, bad strategy? I mean, not a good strategy, but what are they feeling? Terror. Fear. That's what sin does. When you sin against God, it causes all sorts of emotions to come out where you're fine, like with your friends, you're fine in a group, you're fine hiding it until the Lord shows up. Well, I got good news, all of us are gonna stand before the Lord someday, and you don't want to live in fear going into meeting the Lord. Adam and Eve were playing hide and go seek. And so notice verse nine. They're hiding from God among the trees of the garden, then the Lord God called to who? What's your Bible say? What does it say, just look down at your Bible. The Lord God called to the serpent? Lord God called to Eve? No, the Lord God called to the man and said to him, "Where are you?" Now, when God asks you a question, and when He's asking this set of three questions to the man, He's not asking because He doesn't know. He's not saying, "Come out, come out wherever you are. "Olly olly, oxen free." I mean, He's not doing that. He's not saying, "Where are you, I can't find you, "I don't know where you are." He's coming to the man and saying, "Adam, where are you at?" Now, why did He go to the man? He's coming to the man because he gave the man a direct command as to what to do to worship Him, and the man punted his dominion and authority to do what God wanted and ate from the fruit. So who's He going to? The very one He gave the command to eat freely of everything in the garden, but not of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. "Adam, where you at? "We need to have a talk." How many of you know that God loves to confront us in our sin? God loves us enough that He doesn't stay apart. For those of you that are believers, you will know that when you sin, the reason you feel conviction, that's the Lord coming to you. He's coming near to you. Once you've masked it, once you've tried to hide, "Adam, where are you?" He needs Adam to acknowledge where he's at. Now, notice what He says. Verse 10, "I heard the sound of you in the garden, "and I was afraid because I was naked, so I hid myself." Why would he be afraid? In Genesis chapter two, you know, he was singing songs from the love boat, and they were both naked and neither of them were ashamed, and it was awesome, and he wasn't afraid of God at all. He was who he was in his identity before the Lord, and everything was fine until he sinned. And once he sinned his true identity, he was ashamed of. And now he has fear in facing the Lord. Now, all of a sudden, the way that God made him, he's embarrassed by. The way that God made him, he's ashamed of. The way that God made him, he's saying I was afraid. So God asked him two more questions. Notice what He says. He says, "Who told you that you were naked? "Have you eaten from the tree, "which I commanded you not to eat?" So in other words, the notion we get from the text is that being naked, that's just the way it was. It was no big deal, that's just what it was. Adam didn't have a problem with that. Eve didn't have a problem with that. It's just the way they were. When they ate off the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, now they're covering up their differences, they're ashamed about who they are. They're ashamed and convicted that they've sinned against God, and so God asked Adam, "Who told you that? "How did you learn that you were naked? "I never told you that. "Did you eat off the tree that I told you not "to eat off of?" Now men, the next statement that you read is going to be the DNA of all of us as sinner men. 'Cause you would think that Adam would say, "You know what, "it was me. "I didn't do what you commanded me to do. "Instead of eating off all the good trees, "like you commanded, I did eat off the bad one. "It's entirely my fault." That's what you'd expect the Scripture to say, but that's not what Adam says. Notice what he says. The man said, "The woman who You gave to be with me, "she gave me from the tree, and I ate." What do we see in the Garden of Eden? In this perfect world, God said, "How did you know you were naked? "Did you eat off the tree I told you not to eat off of?" "Well, it wasn't me, it was her. "Everything was fine on day six. "I agree with you, it was a great creation, "but if you hadn't given me the woman, "I wouldn't have sinned." Now what are we seeing? We've seen covering, right? We've seen hiding, we've seen fear, now what do we see? Blame. Blame, because when you don't take your sin personally, and guess whose fault it is? It's somebody else's fault. Christians, listen to me. We are all responsible for our own sin. We're all, when we sin, we're responsible for our own sin. We're accountable, we're not a victim. I listen to many guys that will say, "Well, the reason I'm into porn is that my dad "had Playboys around all the time when I was growing up." That may be true. You're responsible for your actions. "The reason that I'm anorexic is because, "like all my sorority sisters were and therefore." No, they may have been, but you chose. "Hey, the reason I'm a gossip is because everybody "in my family just kind of talks about it." That may be true, but you're a gossip. And we have a hard time calling ourselves by the name of our sin, don't we? Here's what we usually say as Christians, 'cause sin's ugly. We don't, we admit that we're sinners. Hopefully we admit that we're sinners, that we know it's true of us, but we have a hard time calling ourselves by that name. It's easier to call you by that name, but I don't want to call myself by that name. There's reasons for why I sin, right? I like to justify my own actions, but when it's somebody else that hurts me, I can call it by name. So for instance, when guys struggle with pornography, they'll say stuff like this. "Yeah, I kinda, I kind of struggle with lust," but they won't say, "Lord, I'm a pornographer," right? They won't call sin by sin. Most people don't say, "I'm a glutton." They say this, they say, "Yeah, I struggle "with eating a little bit too much." We talk about our struggles, rather than naming things by sin. God told Adam, "Do not eat off the tree of the knowledge "of good and evil, in the day that you eat of it, "dying you will die." Adam eats off the tree, God says, "Did you eat off the tree?" "Eve made me do it. "Wasn't me. "It's not my fault." It's blame, it's blame shifting, right? And that's what we have. God goes after the man because the man was responsible for being a provider and being a protector. And we read in the New Testament that sin entered the world through Adam. He's our first sinner, right? That's where we see it pass down. Now, last week I was kind of hard on the men and talked about what we need to be as men, and I'm preaching to myself as much as I'm preaching to anybody else, but here's the reality of this. You can't be what God called you to be as a man, without the Holy Spirit in your life. You can't muscle this one up. You can't leave church and say, "From now on, "I'm gonna be a great provider, "I'm gonna be a great protector, "and I'm always gonna do what it means to be a man." You can't do it apart from the Holy Spirit of God, and what God's looking for is not your commitment and your strength. You know what God's looking for? Is your dependence, and your weakness, and letting God know that He's the one that has to come and work through you. God uses broken men, right? But God uses honest men. Adam, at this point in time is not honest. He admits that he ate, but he's blaming Eve the whole time. So then God goes to the woman in verse 13, then the Lord God said to the woman, "What is this you have done?" And the woman said, "The serpent deceived me and I ate." So what do you see here? God's seen it all. God knows exactly what has happened, and what do we see? Adam saying, "Yeah, I ate, but it was Eve's fault." What does Eve say? "I ate too, but it was the serpent's fault." Is anybody gonna take ownership of this? What I'm trying to get you to see here today is that we can't say these words that a lot of times people say in church, "The devil made me do it." He doesn't have that power. You may give him the power, but he doesn't have the power. He's not controlling you. You have your own volition to choose to sin or choose not to sin, right? Adam's like, "I did it, but it wasn't my fault." Eve says, "I did it, but it wasn't my fault." Now why is this so important that we understand it? Because for us, we need to understand we can't hide because the Lord God sees everything. Now, why do we sin? You ever think about it for a minute? The reason we sin is this, we don't spend our time being filled by the Lord Jesus Christ. We're not filled up to the full of the Lord Jesus Christ. In Ephesians, it tells us to keep on being filled with the Spirit. That means we feast upon Christ, we focus upon Christ, we get our fulfillment from Christ, our joy from Christ. Why? Because at a soul level, Jesus Christ is the only one who satisfies. Food can feed your body, sex can be pleasurable for a time, in the context of marriage, but you know what? Nothing can feed your soul, but the Lord Jesus Christ. And when your soul is not being filled, your flesh will try to fill it with something other than Jesus, and that's what sin is. And whether you feed it with alcohol, or drugs, or adultery, or pornography, or filthy language, it's all an attempt to fill your soul, which only Jesus Christ himself can fill, right? I mean, in the garden, we have Adam and Eve in the garden, all they had to do, all Adam had to do is grab Eve's hand and walk back to the Lord and say, "Hey Lord, "we need you here. "What should we do?" God would have taken care of it. God would have shown him what to do, or God would have done it Himself. But instead of being filled on the Lord, what do they find? They're looking for something at a soul level that will give them wisdom, give them more than what they have, "we need something other than God," and they sin. We do the exact same thing. And then we do the same things they did. We cover ourselves, we hide, we live in fear, all sorts of different emotions, and we blame others. And I could think of myriads of illustrations, some appropriate, some more appropriate for men's conferences, but the one I was thinking about this morning, I was talking to my, I've three other siblings. Two of them are much younger than me and when they grew up, the one story that gets told in her house all the time is how my youngest sister, when my littlest brother was bugging her one time, he didn't have a shirt on and she slapped him on his back and he's very fair skinned, and so there was a hand print on his back with all five digits, and her whole hand, her size. And so my little brother went running to my mom and started crying and saying, you know, "Julie hit me." And my sister said, when my mom came, "What did you do?" She said, "He did it to himself. "He's just trying to get me into trouble." Now think about that. How do you put the exact hand print, your size, on your brother and get him to reach around his back and smack? I mean, it's amazing, but that is what sin is like. We do it all the time. We do it all the time. We make excuses for our own sin and we blame other people, we think it's not as bad as it is, and here's the truth, you cannot hide your sin from God. Adam and Eve are learning that the reason that they're diving in the trees and among the bushes is because they're learning they can't hide from the Lord because He knows everything. And here's the real deal. I know that when it comes to church, oftentimes we think that because we come into church that we're super holy people, and that we're awesome, and that we're not like the world, we're Christian, so we don't do that. Here's what I know. I know we, as Christians, are capable of sinning every single sin that non-Christians are sinning, if we're not being filled by Jesus. I hate saying that, but I just know it's true. I know, but for the grace of God, go I, I know that I'm capable of sinning any sin that non-Christians sin, apart from the grace of God in my life. I just, I know it's true, but here's the problem that happens in church. Because we don't want to be authentic with God, and we're too scared to be vulnerable with each other, when we sin, we do these things. We mask it, we hide it, we put it away, we play games, we don't wanna get too close to other people who might actually know us for who we are. And so that's why I know in a church, especially a church of our size, that there are people that love the Lord, that are steeped in sin, that you don't want anybody else to know about. Some of you guys are sinning sins that you hope your wives never find out about. Some of you wives are sinning sins you hope your husbands never find out about. Some of you parents are sinning sins you hope your kids never find out about. And listen, I was once young, too. I was once young too, and I wasn't a believer, so I know I was sinning sins I didn't want my parents to find out about. It's real, but when you're a Christian and the Holy Spirit is on your life, here's how you're gonna feel. I mean, listen to David when he talks about his sin with Bathsheba in Psalm chapter 32. He says, "How blessed is he whose transgression "is forgiven, whose sin is covered. "How blessed it is the man to whom the Lord "does not impute iniquity and in whose Spirit "there is no deceit." You know what he's saying? There is no price tag on a clean conscience. There's no price tag on a clean conscience. One of the greatest gifts that the Lord Jesus Christ gives us through the cross, is forgiveness of sin, so it can be completely washed, completely cleansed, and not carry around the burden of sin. And yet, for many of us, even as Christians, we carry around the burden of sin, and these next verses would really describe how you feel if this sin quote, "ever got out of the bag." David said, "When I kept silent about my sin, "my body wasted away. "Through my groaning all day long, for day and night, "Your hand was heavy upon me. "My vitality was drained away "as with the fever heat of summer. "I acknowledge my sin to You, "in my iniquity I did not hide. "I said, 'I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,' "and You forgave the guilt of my sin." Unconfessed sin can cause physical ailments, unconfessed sin can cause disease, unconfessed sin can cause you to sin in all sorts of other different ways. You are not living the fullness of Christ, if you are carrying around unconfessed sin in your life. Confess that sin to the Lord. "Yeah, but Pastor Jeff, if I do, this might happen, "so I'm not gonna do that 'cause the consequences "are too great." The consequences of your soul are too great not to confess your sin. We've all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Now you may be here today and you're not really going through one of those, 'cause you're in a season where you're walking intimately with the Lord. Good, but for those of you that are here, that feel that weight, that drain, that says, "I hope nobody ever know." Confess your sin to the Lord and be obedient to what he shows you to do, because there's cleansing in the blood of Jesus. Amen? See the problem with sin is you can't hide because the Lord knows everything. The second problem with sin, is that you can't avoid punishment because the Lord God is holy and just. See the problem with sin, is that you can't avoid punishment because the Lord is holy and just. God, in His holiness, has to punish sin. He absolutely has to. If He doesn't punish sin, then He's really not holy. He's not standing by His nature. So notice what happens next, in verse 14, the Lord God said to the serpent. Now notice what he doesn't do with the serpent. He questions Adam, He questions Eve, He does not ask the serpent any questions. He's just gonna begin to pronounce judgment. He says, "Cursed are you more than all the cattle, "and more than every beast of the field. "On your belly, you will go, and dust you will eat, "all the days of your life." Now notice this, there's only two curses that you're gonna read about in this section: one's for the serpent and one has to do with crops. Who does he not curse? He does not curse Adam, and he does not curse Eve. Adam and Eve are still the image bearers of God. Humankind is not cursed. Satan is cursed. The earth is cursed. You are the image bearer of almighty God. There's going to be punishment that's meted out, but you, yourself, as an image bearer of God, are not cursed. See that. And it's really interesting because we don't know a whole lot from what the Scriptures tell us, but we do know how man was made. How was man made, from what? The dust of the ground. I mean, one of the reasons for sure, why Satan hated humankind, is he saw that God took from dust and created an image bearer. Satan wasn't an image bearer. Satan was an angelic being, is an angelic being that was created for the worship of God, but he wasn't created in the image of God, he wasn't created as an image bearer for God, and in his pride, he wanted to be God, got cast out, and guess what? He now sees God create from the dust, that which is going to be greater than him. He sees it as the crown of God's creation, so he goes after that which God loves the most. And what's his punishment? What's the serpent's punishment for allowing Satan to take over him? "On your belly you will crawl on the dust, "all the days of your life." As a reminder, that this is what I created my image bearers out of. Fair punishment? I think so. And then He says this, "And I will put enmity," which is hostility, "between you and the woman, "and between your seed and her seed. "He shall bruise you on the head "and you shall bruise him on the heel." Many people refer to this theologically as the protoevangelium, the first Gospel, because here what you see is not only Eve's offspring are gonna be in constant hostility with some of Satan's offspring, and his agenda, and his ideas, but you really see the word seed. You see the serpent's seed, which is Satan, you see the woman's seed, which is ultimately Christ. How in Galatians, it tells us that the seed is Christ, who's the fullness of God. Jesus Christ being born of a virgin, the seed of Mary. That's who He is, and what's going to happen? There'll always be hostility between Jesus and Satan, up until a certain time when Satan will bruise Jesus' heel, but Jesus will crush his head. When did this take place? It took place on the cross. And how was Jesus wounded? Well, He was suffered, He suffered and He was beaten, and He was tortured and He was hung on a cross, and He was killed, but He rose victoriously from the dead. And when Satan was cheering for Jesus, when He was being crucified on the cross, what was taking place? It was Jesus Christ putting a death blow to Satan. Now we're gonna read when we get to the book of Revelation, that Satan, while he's a defeated foe, 'cause 1 John 3:8 says that "Jesus came to destroy the works "of the devil," that Satan is a defeated foe, but he's not gone, he's still present. I can tell you that Biblically, theologically, and I can tell you experientially, he hasn't gone anywhere. But there's gonna come a day where he's gonna be thrown in an abyss for a thousand years during the millennial reign of Christ and then he's gonna come back out for one last attempt before being thrown in the lake of fire. But what happened at the cross? I mean, here's the picture of the cross. The picture of the cross is this verse coming true, where Jesus Christ, you can almost see Him pick up his heel and go like , stomping right on Satan's head, like you're done, bro, no more. You are a defeated foe, you don't touch my people. Greater is he that is in my people than he that is in the world. This is where it comes from. God says there'll always be hostility between Satan and Himself up until the time Jesus comes and crushes Satan on the head. Then He says to the woman, He starts to mete out punishment for her. To the woman He said, "I will greatly multiply "your pain in childbirth. "In pain you will bring forth children." I'm not an expert on this, but women is it true? I mean from my experience and what little I know, I have a mom that's a RN, that was a labor and delivery nurse educator for years, it seems like it'd be true to me. Then He says, "Your desire will be for your husband, "and he will rule over you." Now, what does this mean? We know from Genesis one and two, that God created man and women in His image, we said that they're both equal, but they're different, and we said in this context of oneness, the demand is the head of the wife, which means he's her provider and protector, and the woman is to submit to her husband. And in a sinless state, when you have a Spirit filled, even a Spirit filled Adam, that works beautifully. Even in the New Testament, when you read through 1 Corinthians 11, you read that man was not created for woman, but woman was created for the man. We still see the divine order of how God created things. What's the punishment here? God says, "Here's what it's gonna be like. "In a sin stained world, women, you're gonna "have a desire for men and men are gonna Lord it over you. "There's gonna be male domination in the world." Do you ever see that anywhere? I don't know of a woman that's over 20 years old that can't tell me at least one story about some man that's hurt her in some way, because of sin in the world, right? It doesn't take away headship in a marriage, between a Godly husband and a Godly wife, it doesn't. That was there in Genesis one and two. What He's talking about here is as a consequence of the fall, there's gonna be this desire for women to have men, or in this context, if you read ahead, 'cause we're gonna talk about this next week, in Genesis chapter four in verse seven, when we see Cain. God tells him that, "Sin is crouching at your door "and its desire is for you, but you must master it." Same word, "desire." What was the desire sin had? To overtake Cain. And what was the Lord saying? You need to have control over that. What was God saying was gonna be one of the punishments of women? You're gonna have this desire to control your husband, and he's gonna put you down for it. That's a result of the fall. And then He's gonna go to the man and He's gonna begin meting out punishment for the man. Then He said to Adam, "Because you have listened "to the voice of your wife." Now let me just be clear on this. This is not a verse which says, "Men never listen to your wife," okay? Anybody who's been married long enough, knows that your wife has a lot of things to say, and if she's telling you, she's probably right. Here's what He's saying, "Because you have listened "to the voice of your wife and have eaten from the tree "which I have commanded you saying, "'You shall not eat from it.'" In other words, because you were obedient to your wife in a way I told you not to be, that's why you're getting punished. All right? Guys, finish the statement with me. Happy wife, happy?

- Life.

- Now, you heard that before? True and only true if a happy wife means she's not leading you astray from God, right? What was going on here? You get this idea from Adam that he's gonna go after Eve, instead of going after God. I see it in young guys all the time. I'm gonna go after a girl rather than go after God, right? Men, go after God first, pursue God, right? What does that mean? It's not because he listened to his wife, it's because he's listening to his wife tell him something exactly opposite of what God told him to do. That's why. Men listen to your wives, unless your wife is telling you to do something contrary to what the word of God teaches, then lead her. Don't boss her, don't control her, don't manipulate her, gently lead her to the things of God. Amen? Now here's what Adam's problem is, "Cursed is the ground," there you go, ground. "Cursed is the ground because of you. "In toil you will eat of it all the days of your life. "Both thorns and thistles it shall grow for you." In other words, God says, "I'm giving you weeds, man. "That's part of your curse, and you will eat the plants "of the field. "By the sweat of your face, you will eat bread "till you return to the ground, "because from it you are taking, for you are dust "and to dust you shall return." What is God's saying? "I told you the day you eat of it, dying you will die. "You're gonna die. "You came from dust, you're gonna go back to dust. "I told you, I told you, I'm a God of My word. "I told you what was going to happen." So what's gonna happen now? It's gonna be hard for Adam to do what he was called to do. Now you think about these different punishments for a minute. What was man assigned to do in the garden, before the fall? Does anybody remember? Work. He was called to work. So what's his punishment? Now he's still called to work, but guess what? Work is hard. God says not only, "It was easy before, "but now I'm gonna give you thorns, "I'm gonna give you thistles. "There's gonna be challenges to your work." Men, you're called to work, but I promise you this, work's hard. Providing for your family is gonna be hard. Your career is gonna be hard. Can you imagine if everything was easy? Like every day is easy. That's what Adam had. So, he was called to work, God says, "Hey, because "of your sin, you're still gonna work, "but now work's hard." Woman, what were you called to do? Woman was assigned to serving her husband and delivering children. That's still the assignment now, but guess what? That's gonna be hard. I mean, when I talk to younger women, they usually yearn for this. I can't wait till the day I get married, I can't wait till I have kids. I mean, two of the most blessed things that God gives, marriage and kids, and most women that I know desire that unless they're called to be single. They would say, "I look forward to that." Now God says, "Those two things, "they're gonna be really hard." Your marriage, once upon a time prior to sin, there wouldn't be any problem. There were no marital counselors in Genesis one and two. Now it's gonna be hard, and when you deliver, that was gonna be easy, now that's gonna be hard. Women, can you imagine what a world would look like, if marriages, there were no problems in it, and delivering kids was easy? That's what it was like, pre-fall. And what about Satan? Satan didn't have an assignment, but Satan decided that he would take an assignment upon himself to destroy humanity, the crown of all of God's creation, the image bearers, and so what does God tell him? Here's your punishment, "I'm absolutely gonna destroy you." He is now a defeated foe and will ultimately be thrown into the lake of fire. Is God true to His word? Yes. Now we don't like this section because we think we can avoid punishment, but God is holy, and He's just, I mean, He's fair in everything that He does. Ezekiel 18, verse 20 says, "The soul that sins, will die." Every single one of us, we know this, we know we're closer to our dying day than we've ever been before, right at this moment right now, but most of us don't think about it, and we really deep down think, "Yeah, I've sinned. "Yeah, I've probably done some bad stuff. "Yeah, I'm not the best person in the world, "but in my constructive grid, I know this, "God is loving, God is kind, and I'm not as bad "as 10 other people that I know, so I know when I die, "I'll go to heaven." That is a bad way to enter eternity, I'm telling you right now. 'Cause God is holy, so God only takes perfect people. He only takes perfect ones. See the question people ask all the time is, "How could a loving God send people to hell?" He does it every day. That's not a good question. The Bible doesn't answer that question. Here's the question the Bible answers, "How is it a holy God could actually "bring people into heaven?" How is it a holy God could even bring one human being that sinned against Him, that's not perfect into heaven, and that's what He attempts to answer in His Son, by sending His only begotten Son who could do for us in our place, what no one else could ever do. You see the problem with sin, is not only that you can't hide from God, it's not only that you can't avoid punishment, it's that you can't deliver yourself. You can't save yourself, because only the Lord God is merciful and compassionate. You can't deliver yourself. Many people think, "Well, I'll just "find the right religion." Buddhism doesn't save. Islam does not save. Mormonism doesn't save. Being a Jehovah Witness, doesn't save. Confucius doesn't save, Jesus Christ, the Lord, is the only one who saves. He said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life, "and no one comes to the Father except through Me." That's why we see in Genesis 3:15, God is going to send His only begotten Son. We see the first fruit of that in Genesis 3:15. You can't save yourself. You can't make yourself right. Like most people will hear a sermon like this, and here's what they'll say, in their heart. "God, I'll be a good boy from now on. "I promise from now on, I'll always love my wife," or, "I'll be a good girl from now on. "I'll always submit to my husband," or, "From now on, I will always love my kids," or, "From now on, I won't slander anymore, "I won't swear anymore, I won't look at porn anymore, "I won't do these bad things anymore. "Like from now on, I'm gonna be a good neighbor. "I'm not gonna isolate myself. "I'm gonna be intentional about serving. "From now on, God, I'm doing it all right." And even if you could, but you can't, you still stand guilty because of your heredity. It's been passed down to you. You got the sin DNA when you were conceived, and you spent your life proving that you own it, in all sorts of different ways, right? And you can't save yourself. You can't deliver yourself. And what most human beings want to do, is find the right guru, spokesperson, religion, man made up thing, new age philosophy, to help them get over their guilt. It doesn't work, because every single person that dies, stands before the Lord God, to give an account for their life and God only takes those who are perfect, and you can't save yourself. Now, it's really interesting because we get to verse 20, and you see, not only does God punish, but He's loving, because in verse 20, you see, "Now the man called his wife's name Eve, "because she was the mother of all the living." Now it's interesting, 'cause on day six, Adam named all the land animals. We talked about that, in probably under four hours, and what that looked like, but he still didn't name his wife yet. She hadn't been given a name. Maybe she was baby, or good looking, or honey, or something like that, but she hadn't been given a name until here, which tells me this wasn't long after day six. I have a lot of reasons I think theologically for why that's true, but it had to happen pretty quickly. But here he's gonna name his wife Eve, 'cause what, she's gonna be the mother of all the living, why? Because God's first command in the Bible was, "Be fruitful and multiply. "Be my image bearers." God hasn't changed His command. He hasn't cursed humanity. He's still telling humanity, "You're still my image bearers." Ladies, you still have the responsibility to bear children, because I want my image to be bore around the world, right? So He's not taking away man or woman's responsibility, so he calls her Eve, 'cause she's the mother of all the living. Notice this then, the Lord God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife, and clothed them. Why? Why did they need clothes? They already had fig leaves, they already made their own. Was it because God says, "That's not in fashion right now, "I got, I'm way better, haberdasher for Adam"? I mean, is that why? No, here's why. Because fig leaves couldn't atone for their sin. Hebrews 9:22 says, "Without the shedding of blood, "there is no forgiveness of sin." Where did the skins come from? It came from some animal that had to give its life, because blood had to be shed in order to cover sin from the very first sin. We see blood being shed from the very first sin as the way of what is going to ultimately happen down the road in the person, the God-man of Jesus Christ. So it's not that they weren't covered, it's just, God says, "Hey, your skin coverings "don't cover the sin. "Blood covers the sin." An animal is gonna give its life. Even after God sets up the sacrificial system, what was that for? It was to cover sin. Buckets, upon gallons, upon liters of blood were spilled over generations to cover sin, all until Jesus Christ came. And John the Baptist looked at him and said, "Behold, the Lamb of God that takes away the sin "of the world and Jesus Christ, once for all, "the righteous for the unrighteous died, "so you could come to God." And in Jesus Christ's final sacrifice, when His blood was shed, it was sufficient for all sin past, present, and future. We see the foreshadowing of it here. I mean, isn't that awesome? Yeah, God's a punishing God, 'cause He's Holy, He's righteous, He's just, but He's a merciful and compassionate God, and He said, "Hey, I'm gonna forgive your sins." So we see here that an animal shed his blood for skins, Jesus Christ came and shed His blood for sins. Amen? That's what we see. You can't deliver yourself, it's only in Jesus that you can do this. Then in verse 22, it says, "Then the Lord God said, "'Behold, the man has become like one of Us knowing "'good and evil, and now he might stretch out his hand "'and take also from the tree of life and eat "'and live forevermore.'" Remember, there were two trees in the garden: one was the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, one was the tree of life. Now there's no indication in Genesis one and two, that Adam and Eve would have ever died. God said, "The day you eat of the tree of the knowledge "of good and evil dying, you will die," but prior to that, there's no indication that they would have died. Now they're gonna die, but what is God? He's a protector, He's a lover. He says, "Now that they've become like one of Us." Now check out what God is saying. God, didn't say, "You're like Me, you're God." That's not what He's saying. He said, He's making a simile or a metaphor, He's saying this, He says, "You've become like Me, "in the sense that you now know good and evil." Can you imagine a world that you lived in where you didn't know what evil was? There was no evil in the newspapers, there was no evil in the streets, there was no evil in anybody's mind, heart, there were no evil when people are driving on I-25 thinking thoughts, there is no evil anywhere. Like all there is, is good. That's all, you know. God said, "Now you've become like Us," and because dying, you will die, God's going to protect them. "Therefore, the Lord God sent him out from the garden "of Eden to cultivate the ground from which he was taken." So God said, "I made you a garden, which was awesome, "and it would have taken little work, "'cause I was tilling it all, and all you had to do "was kind of tweak a few things. "Now you're being banished from the garden, "and you're gonna work by the sweat of your brow." "And so he drove the man out, and at the east "of the Garden of Eden, He stationed a cherubim, "and the flaming sword, which turned every direction "to guard the way to the tree of life." Now, a cherubim is an angelic being involved in the worship and praise of God. We'll see more of them in the book of Revelation, but it's a being that's there to protect them from taking from the tree, and there's a flaming sword. Why in their sinful condition, would God not want them to eat from the tree of life? Can you imagine dying, you will die, every day you're getting closer to death, but you can never, ever die? It'd be the worst torment and punishment ever. God's like, "I'm gonna protect you from that." So God protects them from that. Now you may ask, "Well, where's the tree now? "I don't see it. "I've been all over the Middle East, I've toured, "I've never seen the tree of life. "They don't even have a tour there." Well, you're gonna get to Genesis chapter six, you're gonna realize there was a global flood that took everything down, but don't worry because when we get to the book of Revelation, at the end of the book of Revelation, you'll see that tree of life again. And for everyone that's named the name of Jesus Christ, you'll be able to eat off of it in season. It's awesome, all right, it's coming back. It's really interesting. When you think about the Gospel, right? How did Adam and Eve sin? By eating off a tree they weren't supposed to. So what did God do? God, the Father sent his Son to come hang on a tree, and be cursed for humanity, so that humanity that was sinful could be made alive in Christ. How awesome is the Gospel? See the Gospel is not you coming to BRAVE Church so you can learn how to become a better person. It's not how, so you can get rid of bad sins so nobody thinks you're a bad person anymore. It's about you understanding that in your sin, you are dead. In your sin, you are separated from God, that's where all of us start. And yet, because of God's great mercy and compassion, He sent his only begotten Son, Jesus Christ, who died according to the Scriptures, who was buried, and who was raised according to the Scriptures, so that all who place their faith and trust in Him, can have all their sin completely forgiven, forever and ever, amen. Is that good news or what? You see, without Genesis three, we have no understanding of why we need a savior. Like, if I don't know what I did wrong, I don't know why I need to be corrected. I mean, if somebody just apprehended me and say, "You're going to jail," and I'm like, "For what?" "Just 'cause." I'd be mad. If I broke the law and I was arrested because I broke the law, then there's a punishment that fits. We broke God's law. All of us have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. And yet God, in Christ reconciled the world to Himself. Think about how Paul writes about this in 1 Corinthians chapter 15. Romans five is another place you can study this week, but in 1 Corinthians chapter 15, it says this, verse, starting in verse 20, "But now Christ has been raised from the dead. "The first fruits of those who are asleep. "For since by a man," that's Adam, "came death, "by a man," Jesus, "came the resurrection of the dead. "For, as in Adam all die, so also in Christ "all will be made alive." We have the first Adam, our daddy, who brought sin into the world, so we have his heredity. We're just as guilty as Adam was, but in Christ, by trusting in Him, we can have all of our sins forgiven. BRAVE Church, I want you to know that I know there's many people that come and for many of you, we kind of may, sometimes it gets made an assumption like, "Well, because you come to BRAVE Church, "we know you're a Christian, because you sing worship music "and you hear the Word of God taught," but I don't make that assumption, because there has to be a time in your life that if you're born dead, that you've been made alive by Christ. So, when did Jesus Christ make you alive? When was the time that you recognized that you were dead, when God pursued you and instead of hiding behind your mask and covering up all your sin, you confessed your sin to the Lord, and said, "Lord, I need you and I need to be forgiven." And Christian, man, woman, boy, or girl, listen to me, if you've been truly saved, why are you carrying around all the guilt and weight of sin? Why are you trying to hide it? Get right with God. God will walk with you through whatever you need to walk through, no matter how heinous it is, and how bad you think it's going to become, because I'm here to tell you on the authority of God's Word, there is no price tag on a clean conscience. God loves you, He loves you unconditionally. He cares for you. You're still His image bearer. Although our image bearing has been marred by sin, God is willing to redeem us from the pit, put a new song in our mouth, and the reason that we sing at BRAVE Church, and the reason we give glory to God at BRAVE Church is not because of anything any human being has ever done, it's because of the glory of Jesus Christ and all He's done our behalf. It's the greatest news on the planet, that God foreshadowed in Genesis three, when humankind had sinned, that he was going to send His Son to redeem us from the pit of hell. And here's the reality, all of us will stand before the Lord Jesus Christ to give an account. I told you, God only takes perfect people. The good news is this, that when you trust in the Savior, who shed His blood for all the sin of humanity, God sees you through the lens of his Son, through His divine S-O-N glasses, and you are perfect in Him. Not because of anything you've done, but because of the righteousness of the Lord Jesus Christ. Don't leave here today without making Jesus, the Lord of your life. And for those of you that are Christians, if Jesus really is the Lord of your life, don't leave here today with that weight on your shoulders, saying, "I just have to gut this one out, "I'm taking it to the grave." You don't have to take it anymore, you can lay it right on the cross. Cast all your anxieties on Him because what? He cares for you. Amen? I'm gonna pray and then we're gonna take communion together and hopefully you have some elements. If you don't have them at home, just gather them now, and hold them in your hand as I pray, and then hear this song sung over you, as we get ready to receive from the Lord. Lord Jesus, we just thank You for who You are. Lord, we bless You for Your Word. Lord, we know we can't hide from our sin, we can't avoid punishment, we can't deliver or save ourselves, but we know that You can deliver and save us, and Lord, we thank You for the grace of Jesus Christ. Lord, as we hold these elements in our hand, as we look at them during the singing of the song, Lord, we just want to be reminded that it's through Your shed blood and through Your body, Your broken body, that we have life and have it in Your name. And Lord, we just thank You and bless You. If you're here today and you never trusted Christ, you say, "I want to trust Jesus," here's how you can pray. Lord, I know that I'm a sinner, I know that I'm dead in my sins, I know I'm separated from You, but I need You. Today, I may not know a lot, but I believe You died on the cross for my sins, and were buried, and rose from the dead, and right now I want You to be the Lord of my life. Come into my life, Lord Jesus. By faith, I believe in You. And for those of you who know the Lord, for some of you here today that feel the weight of your sin, I just pray as we're singing this song over you, and as you're holding these elements in your hand, you will know that through Christ, you are already forgiven. And the Bible says, "If you confess your sins, "God is faithful and just to forgive us, your sins, "and cleanse you from all unrighteousness." Go before Him now, as you prepare your heart to take the Lord's supper, in Jesus' name, amen.

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