Genesis 3:1-6. “Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die. And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil. And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.”
The Book of Genesis is a book of beginnings, and in the passage above is found the beginnings of human woe and suffering. It is the beginning of sin; the violation of God’s will by His creatures. Along with that violation of God’s will came a landslide of negative and painful results, and humanity still suffers from those results to this day. In fact, the only viable explanation of the darkness, cruelty and wickedness that is present in our world is found in these verses. There is also found in this chapter of Genesis the origin of humanity’s darkness.
A character is introduced here that will be found throughout the remainder of God’s Word; “the serpent.” Revelation 12:9 sheds some light on the identity of the serpent. “And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.” The Apostle John, who wrote the Book of Revelation, gave Satan the dubious recognition of being the one that “deceiveth the world world.” Please read the following passages to find more about the being called, “Satan.” Job 1-2; Isaiah 14:12-15; Ezekiel 28:12-19; Matthew 4:1-11; Luke 10:17-20; 1 Thessalonians 2:17-18; 1 Timothy 3:6; 1 Peter 5:8-9; Revelation 20:1-10.
In the above verses, we find that Satan was a created angelic being, perhaps one of the highest ranking angels of heaven. As the “anointed cherub” that “covered” the throne of God, he was lifted up with pride and sought to rise above his Creator in prominence. He was “cast down” from heaven and, after the creation of humanity, became the deceiver and tempter of mankind. His power is tremendous, but his doom is certain. For now, however, he is walking about this earth seeking whom he may devour. Sin entered into this world through his power of deception, and all men are sinners according to the Scripture. (Romans 3:10-23) This explains the necessity of the condescension of the Son of God that He might “give Himself for our sins.” (Galatians 1:4)
There has been no book of the Bible attacked more visciously than the Book of Genesis. The first recorded words of Satan found in the Bible are in Genesis 3:1 where we read, “Yea, hath God said?” Part of his success with Eve was getting her to doubt the Word of God. He has been most successful in convincing men to reject the Book of Genesis, for herein is found the record of the fall of man into sin and the explanation of the need for redemption. If Genesis can be denied, the rest of the Bible becomes nothing more than empty religious fables, which is exactly what has happened over the past couple of centuries. Modern man has been convinced that he is far too intelligent to accept the simple teachings of this first book of the Bible. Beloved, “God forbid: let God be true, but every man a liar....” (Romans 3:4)
What was the “sin” that plunged the whole human family into ruin? It was not the “tree of the knowledge of good and of evil.” The fruit of that tree was not filled with poison that would defile the human family. The “sin” was disobedience to the revealed will of God. The disobedience of Adam and Eve introduced “sin” into their lives. God had promised that if they did disobey Him in partaking of the forbidden fruit, the result would be their death. (Genesis 2:16-17) There are three types of death found in the Word of God. First, there is physical death. Adam and Eve were created to live eternally. Some marvel at the long lives spoken of in the early days of the human family, but this should come as no surprise when we consider God’s original plan for mankind. When Adam and Eve sinned against God in the Garden, a process began in them that eventually brought them to the end of their physical lives. Sin brought physical death. Secondly, there is spiritual death. Writing to the Ephesians, Paul spoke of this spiritual death; “And you hath He quicken who were dead in trespasses and sins....” (Ephesians 2:1) Adam and Even experienced spiritual death the instant they disobeyed their Creator. This will become obvious as we read on in the Book of Genesis. Finally, there is eternal death, or eternal separation from God in hell. Note the following words "But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.” (Revelation 21:8) Adam and Eve died spiritually, the process of physical death started and the potential of eternal death in hell all came as a result of their disobeying their Creator in partaking of the forbidden fruit. These truths that are found in the Book of Genesis are essential in understanding the current condition of humanity today.
This explains why Satan has been so diligent is seeking to undermine the truths revealed in the first book of the Bible. If successful, and he certainly has been, the underlying problem of the human family is abolished, along with the need of the redemptive work of Jesus Christ. This is exactly where we are in our world today. Most in our advanced world has rejected the truths of Genesis, and have consequently rejected the need for the Savior and the belief in His Person and Work.
Pastor Steve Smith