For the past few days I have been strolling through book of Genesis. I posted “The Serpent’s Penalty” talking about what happened to the serpent for his part in tempting Eve.
No thoughts have come to me about Eve’s punishment for her part in the fall. I will let all of you intrepid female bloggers out there write something deep and meaningful on that one. I guess maybe I just don’t have the guts to take on all women right now.
But, I do have some thoughts on Adam’s penalty for his part in the fall. First let’s take a look at the text. It comes from Genesis 3:17-19
To Adam he said, "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; through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life.
It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field.
By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return."
Well you know most of us are not farmers anymore, so I don’t think this means that we will always be farming, there must be something else to this. What can it be?
A little paraphrase came to mind that I think it might fit here.
Here it is, it is really profound.
Making a living is going to be hard.
There you have it. Why is this such a big deal? Let me ask you another question? Do you love what you do for a living? I know some of you do and that is a great blessing, but as I look at myself and my work and many of those around me, there is generally turmoil and distress in our thoughts about our work.
Yes, I realize this may be a lack of a thankful heart and certainly some of that is true in our very affluent society, but I think some of the difficulty may indeed be from the curse of Adam. It is not that it is overly difficult to make enough money to provide for the base needs of our families, again this is a comment of our very affluent society. It is more an issue of the mental condition and anguish or “painful toil” that is present in the making of a living.
I can only imagine how it would have been in the garden. Sure, Adam was working, but there was total delight and fulfillment in that work. I long for that from the bottom of my heart!
So the question is, can we get any of that back here on earth or are we destined to live the curse?
I will give 10 points to the best answer to this question.
The question was, “…can we get any of that [delight and fulfillment] back here on earth or are we destined to live the curse?
Since God said, “Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat,” I believe we will not be totally free from this toil — this side of the second coming. I think it’s like the way we are freed from sin: We are freed from its penalty first, then its power as we mature in Christ, and finally from its very presence when we are transformed to “incorruptible” beings.
So it is with the painful toil vs delight & fulfillment. I believe we can experience God’s favor & blessing through our humble service and obedience – though it may be seasonal, as God still allows trials and suffering to purify us.
Thank you for your thoughts DJ. My question for you then is, how far along that path of “delight & fulfillment” have you come? And, are you willing to help direct others?