We tend to remember Eve for her sin in the garden; but one can imagine, like us, she had many facets. What sets her apart is that her first sin changed the life of every person until the coming of the Lord. The object of this lesson is to touch upon various aspects of what the Bible teaches in regards to Eve. (1-2)
She was called woman because she was taken out of man. Adam believes that eve is like him; he says she is, “bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh” (Gen 2:23). Far from being a declaration of superiority, this verse celebrates union and likeness. Woman truly resolved the problem God saw in Gen 2:18; Man is no longer alone.4
Both Eve and her husband are called Man (Adam in Hebrew). “He created them male and female and blessed them. And when they were created, He called them man” (Gen 5:2). This was God’s plan for marriage. He made them equal and of one flesh. This is the divine ideal for man and wife and what makes a spiritually functional home.1
“Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and shall become united and cleave to his wife, and they shall become one flesh” (Gen 2:24).
Very often, we have reversed this passage. Throughout history in Christian cultures, women have left their families to “cling to” their husbands. The Bible is very definite that the husband should be the one to leave his family and cling to his wife. When this happens, they become one flesh, much as Christ and the Church are one Body.4
We are created equal with different responsibilities to make the home complete.3
|Goes out & Works||Keeps the home in tact|
|Physically stronger||Emotionally stronger|
|Important role for children ages 10-teenage years||Important role for children ages of newborn to 8-10 years|
|Decision maker||Influencer of decisions|
Adam named his wife Eve “because she was the mother of all the living” (Gen 3:20). Eve means “life,” “life giving,” or “mother of all who have life.” 1
Eve lived in a perfect world, created for her and her husband. We might wonder why she would do anything to disturb such a blessed existence. It started innocently enough – just a stroll through the garden.1
The serpent enters the garden and speaks to Eve. He asks her if God said, “You shall not eat from any tree in the garden?” (Gen 3:1). This is exactly the opposite of what God had said in Gen 2:15-16. He said, “You may freely eat of every tree of the garden.” The serpent undermined what God said. Eve responds, but again she subtly changes what God said. She replies, “We may eat of the fruit of trees in the garden.” (Gen 3:2). She reduces the bounty of God’s gift from “freely eat” to “eat” and “every tree” to only “trees”. She continues to say God said, “You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the middle of the garden, nor shall you touch it, or you shall die.” (Gen 3:3). God had actually said, “But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall die” (Gen 2:17). Eve defines the tree by its location, not by what it was. Eve reports that they are not even permitted to touch it, while God had said not to eat. Eve presents death as a punishment; God presents it as a consequence. The result of these changes is that Eve reports that God is denying them, when the original was about bestowing bounty and protection.
Eve was enticed by lust… for food, pretty things, and personal gain.1
“When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye and also desirable for gaining wisdom…” (Gen 3:6). She decided to believe the serpent and her own desires above the command of her creator.1
She took her eyes off of the Lord and decided to walk in the flesh. She tried to rely on her own instincts instead of relying in the Spirit.3
Only after they ate the fruit did Adam and Eve become ashamed before the Lord. Until they ate, they had freely entered the Lord’s presence.4
God asked Adam if he had eaten of the tree. He answered by projecting the blame on Eve and God. Adam’s joy was gone at “bone of my bone” to be replaced by blaming. Eve also tried to shift the blame. She claimed the serpent had tricked her. Instead of accepting responsibility for her actions, she lays the fault on the serpent.4
From the time of the sin, her bond with God was broken. Eve’s bond with her husband was also broken as they passed the blame for the transgression.…The man said, ‘The woman you put here with me-she gave me some fruit’…The woman said, ‘The serpent deceived me, and I ate…’ (Gen 3:12, 13).4
In His mercy, God clothes Adam and Eve (Gen 3:21). Even forgiven sin has consequences. As punishment, they were shut out of their perfect garden (Gen 3:23-24).1
Hardship then became a part of life; hard labor, pain in childbirth, and even murder. Eve’s son, Abel, was killed by his brother Cain. Eve must have experienced extreme sorrow at the loss of her two sons as Cain was condemned to wander the Earth. Even in her sorrow, Eve acknowledged God’s majesty, for she named her next son Seth, saying “God has granted me another child in place of Abel, since Cain killed him.” (Gen 4:25). Seth means “granted.” 1
We are very much like Eve; her sin is all too familiar. We face similar temptations and fall into sin in the same way. We listen while God’s Word is twisted or contradicted or we disregard it when it seems illogical. We are tempted by lust for pretty things, food, and personal gain.1
Like Eve’s, our sin reaches further than we can see at the time. Hidden, or un-confessed, sin breaks our close relationship with God, our spouse, family and friends. It continues to grow and is far reaching. In His mercy, God gives us a way out. The Bible tells us that if we turn to God and confess our sin and believe in Jesus’ sacrifice, He is faithful to forgive us. Our fellowship is restored. We can return to the life that God plans for us.1
Examples of God’s Promises – Three Cycles God takes us through in response to receiving God’s promises made in faith.
God gave Adam/Eve authority over everything on Earth (Gen 1:26).
They were welcomed to eat from every tree including the “tree of life”. But God told them they would surely die if they ate from “the tree of knowledge of good/evil and blessing/calamity” (Gen 2:9).
Problem: Serpent/Eve (Gen 3:1)
God allowed His children to be tested, which required self control and obedience (the tree of the knowledge of good and evil).3
The serpent presented his temptation in a way which naturally appealed to the innocent and childlike character of Eve. It attempts to focus her mind on what she is missing out on, rather than what her loving father has provided.2
First, the serpent attempts to create in Eve’s mind the idea that her father has been keeping things from her unfairly, asking her “Is it really true that God said, You shall not eat from every tree of the garden?” (Gen 3:1). This question implied that God had denied Adam and Eve all of the trees of the garden, but God had not done this, and Eve knew it (‘We may eat of the fruit from the trees of the garden’, Gen 3:2-3). Eve rightly identifies the fact that God had given His children all they could need, and that there was only one tree withheld from them.2
Next, the serpent attempts to introduce doubt into Eve’s mind, encouraging her to question whether or not her father’s word is reliable (‘Surely you will not die’, Gen 3:4). Like the first question, this was an attack on the character of God. The first question challenged His generosity in providing for His children, and the second question challenged His honesty and reliability.2
The serpent combines this attack with a suggestion that God is keeping something from Eve which she should rightly have, something which God has not even told her about (‘God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will open and you will be like divine beings who know good and evil’, Gen 3:5). The enticement to become independent of the parent is a powerful temptation to disobey; a temptation felt strongly by any child.2
Provision: There are two important details to note. The first is that before doing this God had given Adam and Eve the promise of a redeemer (Gen 3:15), and showed His love and care by forgiving and covering them (Gen 3:21).3
One of the most powerful phrases ever written by the apostle Paul is found in Romans 5:20, “So where sin increased, grace abounded all the more.” The problems of human sin and rebellion will not thwart God’s plan. God’s grace, truth and love will ultimately win the day.4
Abel sought after God’s acceptance (Gen 4:1-8). He raised sheep even though he could not eat the meat of sheep at that time (Gen 3:18). He could use their wool for clothing, but primarily he raised them for sacrifice to God as Adam & Eve taught him from their personal experience of using blood from a substitute’s death to cover their sins. Therefore Abel pleased God in faith by raising, shepherding sheep, and obeying.(1 & 5)
Cain was a tiller of the ground (Gen 4:2-3). He knew he couldn’t give his best offering from grains and fruits because he was taught that the only sacrifice accepted for his sins was a blood sacrifice.5
Problem: Cain’s anger, jealousy, rebellion, stubbornness, and disobedience
If Cain displayed these character faults over his sacrifice, it is certain that Abel saw them manifested in Cain as they grew up together. Cain approached God with external ritual (works), and did not step out in faith. He offered God the works of his hands, produce from the cursed earth. Cain offered to God the works of his own hands and paid no heed to his parents teaching him about their sacrifice to God after their sin.(1 & 5)
Provision: “By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts; and through it he being dead still speaks”
Cain had a few options.5
God wants us to humble ourselves and heed to his commandments. God yearns to have a relationship with us and be our protector, comforter, liberator, our guide, our healer, and our friend. But we have to take time to commune with Him. Just as we spend quality time with a person, get acquainted, and become close in a relationship, God seeks for that same attention and depth in a relationship with us. We can only do this by spending time in the Word and allowing God to show His Glory and move in our lives. Obedience is the ultimate way of seeking God wholeheartedly.5