The Scriptures teach that, in the beginning, God created all things, and that He created all things perfect (Gen. 1:26). His creation included the material universe, plant life, animal life, human beings, and even angelic beings. Yes, even Satan himself was originally created perfect in all his ways (Ezek. 28:12-15).
Scriptures also teach that God’s perfect creation did not remain that way. Sin entered and God’s creation was marred.
Sin against God originated with Satan. This angelic creature was originally called Lucifer, which means “light-bearer” or “shining one.” He was called the “son of the morning” and the “anointed cherub.” He was “full of wisdom” and “perfect in beauty,” but his heart became lifted up with pride because of his beauty and he corrupted his wisdom because of his splendor. He said in his heart five times, “I will,” (Isaiah 14:13-14), thus setting his will against the will of God. As a result, Lucifer fell from heaven (Isaiah 14:12), being cast out of the mountain of God (Ezek. 28:16). Please take note of the fact that God did not create him as an evil being, but God created him with the capability of choosing whether he would serve God or not. Lucifer’s heart was lifted up with pride and he tried to exalt himself above God. It was because of this choice to sin against God that he became Satan, the “adversary” of God.
Adam and Eve were also created perfect. They were created in the image of God (Genesis 1:26) so that God could have fellowship with them (Genesis 3:8). They were innocent of any sin and therefore enjoyed the very presence of God.
God set them in the beautiful garden of Eden and laid upon them one requirement,
“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 surely die” (Gen. 2:17).
Now the fact that God gave this requirement to them, implied that they also had the capability of choosing whether they would obey God or not.
The Cause of Sin (Genesis 3:1-6)
The cause of sin was Satan, the adversary of God. Satan’s tactics were deceit and trickery. He approached the woman, Eve, as a serpent, a creature who was “more cunning than any beast of the field.” Satan began by questioning God’s Word: “Has God indeed said, You shall not eat of every tree of the garden?” He then proceeded to contradict God’s Word: “You will not surely die.”
Eve’s troubles began when she listened to and talked with the serpent. As soon as this creature questioned God’s Word, she should have recognized his opposition to God and turned away from him, but she did not know God’s Word as well as she should have. She demonstrated this lack of knowledge by mishandling God’s Word three different ways. First, she took away from God’s Word: “We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden” (she omitted the word “freely”). Second, she added to God’s Word: “You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it” (God said nothing about “touching” the fruit). Third, she corrupted God’s Word: “lest you die” (God had said, “you shall surely die”).
Satan’s temptation of Eve appealed to the same area which had caused his own fall: pride. He told the woman,
“For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
- Lust of the flesh — Eve saw that the fruit forbidden by God was “good for food.”
- Lust of the eyes — Eve saw that the fruit forbidden by God was “pleasant to the eyes.”
- Pride of life — Eve saw that the fruit forbidden by God was “desirable to make one wise.”
Both Adam and Eve were put to the test and both failed. Eve was thoroughly deceived by Satan (II Cor. 11:3), took of the fruit and ate. Adam was not deceived by Satan (I Tim. 2:14). He knowingly disobeyed God and ate also.
The Consciousness of Sin (Genesis 3:7-13)
Immediately, Adam and Eve became conscious of their nakedness and their sin. This is evidenced by the fact that they tried to cover their nakedness with fig leaves, they tried to hide themselves from God because they were afraid of Him, and then they tried to blame someone else for what they had done. Adam blamed Eve and God by saying, “The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I ate.” Eve blamed the serpent saying, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.” By Adam and Eve’s disobedience, sin entered into the world. From the dispensation of INNOCENCE, mankind moved into the dispensation of CONSCIENCE. The man and woman, who had been innocent before God, were now made conscious of the fact that they had sinned against God by disobeying His Word.
The Consequences off Sin (Genesis 3:14-18)
The entrance of sin resulted in grave consequences. God pronounced judgment upon the serpent (vs. 14-15), upon the woman (vs. 16, 22-24), upon the man (vs. 17, 19, 22-24), upon the creation itself (vs. 17-18, Rom. 8:20-22), and upon all mankind (Rom. 5:12-14). The grave consequences were no surprise. God had stated them up front: “You shall surely die.”
The Conqueror Over Sin (Genesis 3:15)
God is a God of love, mercy, and grace. Along with the pronouncement of these judgments, God gave the first promise of the One who would eventually conquer sin and death and redeem mankind from the curse of sin. This promise is given in Genesis 3:15,
“And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel.”
The Seed of the woman is the Lord Jesus Christ, who would one day suffer a bruise to His heel by the hand of the serpent (i.e. Satan). This bruise occurred when Jesus was crucified on the cross of Calvary, but that very same death on the cross was when Christ bruised the head of Satan. Hebrews 2:14 states that through His death, Christ destroyed “him who had the power of death, that is, the devil” (Heb. 2:14). Although he is still active, even today, Satan’s ultimate end will be the lake of fire where he will remain for eternity (Rev. 20:10).
The Covering for Sin (Genesis 3:21)
Adam and Eve’s attempts to cover their nakedness and sin were futile. God provided the required covering for their sin by making coats of skins for them. This act by God introduced the requirement He placed upon man for this new dispensation; the shedding of blood to cover man’s sins (Heb. 9:22). This requirement was to remain in effect until the promised Redeemer came; the One who alone could take away sins (Heb. 10:10-14).