<<the first man upon the earth>>
God created Adam from the dust of the ground in His own image – having the likeness in personality, character and with the ability to talk with his creator. He was distinct from other created life in that God breathed into him and he became a living person (Gen 2:7). Eve was created from Adam to be his helper (Gen 2:21-24). The creation period of Adam and Eve is open to speculation, but many Bible scholars believe it was only some 6000 years BC.
Adam lived for 930 years and his story is told in Genesis 1:26-5:5.
All humanity has physically descended from Adam and Eve (Christ was born of a woman, although conceived by the Holy Spirit and did not sin). Because of this ancestral line, pain, sin and death continued to be passed on from generation to generation so it is not only when we yield to sin ourselves that we suffer the consequences of ‘the fall’ (Rom 5:12; Heb 4:15).
“The first man Adam became a living being, the last Adam a life giving spirit”, referring to the new form of existence of Christ after His resurrection, better suited to His glorified life just as Adam’s was for natural life (1 Cor 15:45-50). When we are glorified, God will also give us bodies better suited for eternal life.
Lessons from his life: * Adam was given authority over all the animals in the Garden of Eden and responsibility to care for the earth (Gen 1:26-28, 2:15,19,20). God clearly instructed that one particular tree was off limits. Eve was tempted to doubt God’s rule and both Adam and Eve ate of its fruit. By this act of disobeying God humanity lost their privileged place and came into bondage to Satan, the deceiver (Gen 2:17, 3:1-19). Through sin, mankind loses authority although many godless rulers by manipulation, intimidation and human power try to control people.
* We are to clearly pass on God’s instructions to others – and also the consequences if the instructions are not obeyed (Gen 2:16,17). Eve knew it was off-limits but obviously was not totally convinced of the outcome (Gen 3:3). God won’t prevent us from sinning, rather He gives us a choice – to obey and be blessed or disobey and be punished. Every action has consequences – good or bad. This is the principle of cause (action) and effect (result or consequence), also termed the law of sowing and reaping. The consequences can be in operation for a long time – we are still suffering for Adam and Eve’s sin even today. Only by giving opportunity to disobey can obedience be tested.
* After Eve had eaten of the forbidden fruit, she gave some to Adam and he ate too (Gen 3:6,17). He wasn’t ‘man’ enough to stand firm. It took Satan (in the form of a serpent) to deceive Eve and get her to partake. Adam succumbed to a woman. How many men today yield to this subtle female pressure and disobey God rather than living by the Word of God and being a constant guide, protecting and leading their spouse and children? Eve acted impulsively and independently, not taking time to check the offer out with Adam in accountability. God ultimately holds the husband responsible. Don’t try and fill any desire in life outside God’s direction and principles.
* Adam and Eve didn’t own up to their sin – they tried to justify themselves by shifting the blame (Gen 3:12,13). Rationalising, making excuses and blaming others for our wrongdoing does not clear up the problem. God can only forgive sin that is acknowledged. We need to take responsibility for our actions. What sins am I not facing?
* The repercussion of sin spread into other areas. Adam and Eve originally had a close relationship with God. After they sinned, not only was this intimacy with their creator lost, but child-bearing, and daily work would be affected (Gen 3:16-19). Sin changed Adam from one who walked and talked with God, to one who felt guilty and tried to hide from God. When we sin, this influences numerous other areas too.