A Small Request
Once upon a time, there was a tree standing in the middle of a lush garden…a place called paradise. This garden was filled with so many wonderful trees, and all the Master asked was that the tenants refrain from eating of the one tree in the middle.
So many options; one small request…
The garden was filled with every tree “pleasing to the sight and good for food”, so it’s safe to assume no good thing was withheld from the two tenants who occupied the land. This is so important to establish as we move forward in the story…absolutely no good thing was withheld by the Master.
Deception and Doubt Enter the Story
As the two tenants enjoyed paradise, an intruder slithered into the story. His only weapon was his words, and he used them effectively. His goal was to steal, kill and destroy, but he first had to position himself as a trustworthy one with a credible perspective. His words, laced with lies, weaved an alternative version of the truth. With very intentional brushstrokes, he painted a deceptive picture, positioning himself as the sole truth-teller, while the Master was to be questioned regarding the motives of His heart.
Rather than silencing this intruder, Adam and Eve entered into a conversation…allowing the intruders words to chisel away at the beliefs they held.
The Fall Before The Fall
Genesis 3:6 has been the text used to identify what’s been commonly referred to as the three original sins which took place at the fall of man in the Garden of Eden: 1) lust of the flesh; 2) lust of the eyes; and 3) the pride of life.
I am proposing that this battle was lost prior to the moment they took the fruit and ate. There was a “critical moment” that was lost by Adam and Eve prior to the fall. It was the moment when they allowed doubts to enter their mind regarding God’s intentions toward them. Rather than declaring God was good and possessing only good intentions for them, they embraced the idea that God was holding out on them.
A Contract By Agreement
There was no signing on a line, no shaking of hands, but in the moment Adam and Eve chose to come into agreement with Satan, a contract was made and it was fulfilled moments later through their act of rebellion toward God. They chose to agree with Satan’s report that God was holding out on them, that He did not have best intentions for them.
In that moment of agreement, truth became a lie and lies became truth, the snake became the entrusted; God became the distrusted…and they saw only that tree in the middle.
Eve looked upon the forbidden tree and saw that “the tree was good for fruit, and that it was a delight to the eyes…” A dense fog creeped over them and Adam and Eve no longer saw all that God had for them…they only saw the one thing God withheld from them. They only saw that God was not to be trusted any longer.
So…Is He REALLY Good?
We inherit a “sin” nature from Adam and Eve. It runs through the veins of human history, generation to generation. Although a perfect work was finished at the Cross, taking back the authority that was snatched away on that day in front of a tree, in the middle of a garden called paradise, there remains some unfinished business for us.
Although the work was finished, we still stand before that proverbial tree, in the presence of a snake weaving his tales with one motive…to steal, kill, and destroy from us. He still tells a story of a God who holds out on us, a God who does not have our best in mind. He positions himself as a friend, lies dripping from his mouth as he whispers words of deception.
Will we continue to listen to his lies or will we cut off his head and believe the One who created us in His image, who has only good in store for those who will receive the gift of life He’s offered through Jesus Christ?
Everlasting Greatness Passes Through the Cross
If we are to pursue the greatness God has for us, we have to determine within our own hearts whether we believe He is really good, and has good in store for us. Each of us were made with a grand design in mind…unique in so many ways from others around us… We were made as those wonderful trees in the Garden so many years ago, to bear fruit of every kind, to flourish in this life, to enjoy others and be enjoyed by others as we walk in our own giftings…given to us by a Loving Creator who longs to be our Father.
True and everlasting greatness comes from many directions, and it goes off in many directions of expression…….but all paths lead through the Cross if you want what is offered.
Please…for the sake of all of the lives impacted by you, pursue the greatness you were designed to become. In Jesus Name…..