CHAPTER 9

The Origin Of Sin--Part 2

(The Fall of Man)

As we learned in the last lesson, the heart of Lucifer was lifted up in PRIDE and he fell. For the first time a creature had sinned against the Creator. It was the sin of pride. After Lucifer fell, countless numbers of other angels followed the devil into sin and stood with him against God. The fall of Satan and the rebellion of the other angels all took place before there was any world or universe as we now know it. There were no people (humans), and the creation events recorded in Genesis chapter 1 had not yet taken place.

The Scene Changes From Heaven to Earth

Even though God had prepared the lake of fire for the devil and  ________      _____________ (Matthew 25:41), He did not send them there immediately. God wanted to first teach the angels something very important. God wanted to vindicate His character and prove once and for all that He is a Just God and a Loving God. To achieve this purpose, God is allowing the good and bad angels to view THE DRAMA OF REDEMPTION which is taking place now on the planet Earth that God created.

The angels watched with great interest as God created the universe. In the book of Job we learn that the holy angels sang together and shouted for joy when God laid the foundations of the ___________  (see Job 38:4-7). The earth became the great stage upon which the great drama would be presented. The angels must have been intently interested as God formed man from the ______________________ of the ground (Genesis 2:7) and as God formed the woman from the man (Genesis 2:21-22). The greatest wonder of all took place thousands of years later.  The angels must have been astounded when their great Creator-God left the glories of heaven and became a Man (John 1:1,3,14) and later died the shameful death of crucifixion.  The angels were learning some amazing and wonderful things about God and His love.

The Origin of Human Sin

When did sin first enter the human race? How did sin pollute and defile the race of mankind? Did God create man as a sinner (Genesis 1:26-27)? ________  Remember that God is not the Author of sin.  After God saw everything that He had made (including Adam and Eve), behold it was  ________    ____________ (Genesis 1:31). If Adam and Eve had been sinful, wicked creatures, could they have been described by the words "VERY GOOD"? ____________ We should make a difference between what Adam was by creation and what Adam became by the fall. God did not create a sinful man. A very good man became a sinner by a willful act of disobedience.
 

The Simple Test

As we learned in Chapter 8, the angels were given a test to see if they would remain loyal to God:

REMAIN LOYAL
AND STAY ON
GOD'S SIDE

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Many passed this test and remained "HOLY ANGELS."

?

REBEL AGAINST GOD AND JOIN THE SIDE OF THE DEVIL
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Many failed this test and became fallen creatures known as "DEMONS" or "UNCLEAN SPIRITS."

God created man and put him in the garden of Eden (Genesis Chapter 2). Adam was also given a test to see if he would remain loyal to God and loyal to Godís Word. This simple test of obedience is found in Genesis 2:16-17.
 

"Thou Mayest" (Genesis 2:16)

What could man eat according to Genesis 2:16? ___________________________
What kinds of fruit do you think this might have included? Was Adam given a great number and a great variety of foods to eat? Often we think about the one thing that Adam could not eat, and we forget about the many, many things that he could eat! God gave Adam a great deal of freedom when it came to eating. There was only one kind of fruit that was forbidden. All the others were allowed and given to man to be enjoyed.

Sometimes young people think too much about the things that they are not allowed to do, and they do not give enough thought to all that they can do. For example, is there some place that your parents will not let you go? Instead of always thinking about this forbidden place, stop and consider all of the places that your parents will let you go! Is there something that your parents will not let you do? Instead of always thinking about this forbidden activity, stop and consider all of the activities that your parents will let you do! Is there something that your parents will not let you have? Instead of always dwelling on what is forbidden, stop and consider all that your parents let you have and all that they let you enjoy. We tend to focus on the negative and forget about the positive. Remember that there was only one forbidden tree. There were multitudes of "non-forbidden" trees in the garden!

Suppose you enter one of those ice cream shops which have about thirty different kinds and flavors of ice cream. Suppose the owner of the shop wants to reward you for being a faithful customer and he says, "Of all the flavors of ice cream in my shop you may freely eat until you are full; only touch not the chocolate ice cream!" Would you sulk or grumble and gripe because you were not allowed to eat the chocolate or would you enjoy your ice cream feast by trying and treating yourself to many of the other flavors? Which is greater--the freedom you were given or the restriction that was placed upon you? Often young people lose out on the freedoms and enjoyments of life because they focus all their attention on some of lifeís restrictions. They lose sight of all that they can have and all that they can enjoy if they would choose to stay within the restrictive boundaries set up by God and by parents.

Adam and Eve were given much freedom by God to enjoy the great variety of fruit trees in the garden. Along with the great freedom which they had, God also added one important restriction:

"Thou Shalt Not" (Genesis 2:17)

What one restriction was Adam given (Genesis 2:17)? __________________________ _________________ What would happen to Adam if he were to violate this command? _________________________________________ You will notice that God did not give Adam five or ten reasons why he should obey this command. There was one major reason for Adam not eating from one particular tree:  BECAUSE GOD SAID NOT TO DO IT!  God gave Adam a simple test of obedience:  ADAM, WILL YOU OBEY ME?

OBEY GOD (DON'T
EAT THE FORBIDDEN
FRUIT) AND LIVE.

?

DISOBEY GOD (EAT
THE FORBIDDEN FRUIT)
AND DIE.

Think of parents forbidding a young person from doing something. Should the young person obey only if the parents can give several reasons why they made such a rule?  Or, should the young person obey simply because the parents said so? (Note: even if the parents did not have very good reasons, should they still be obeyed? Why? Why not? Would there ever be a situation in which a young person should not obey a parent? See Acts 5:29, and compare Ephesians 6:1).

The angels had to make an important, eternal decision. Many of them made the wrong decision and will follow the devil to hell. Adam had to make a big decision, and as we all know, he made the wrong decision and fell into sin. Today men, women, boys and girls must make a big decision:

 

I WILL RECEIVE
THE GIFT OF GOD
BY FAITH.

(Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:8-9;
John 1:12; 1 John 5:11-12).




I WILL HAVE ETERNAL LIFE.

?

I WILL REFUSE AND
REJECT THE GIFT
OF GOD.



I WILL PERISH (John 3:16).
I WILL BE CONDEMNED
(John 3:18).
I WILL EXPERIENCE GOD'S WRATH (John 3:36).

What decision have you made? Have you obeyed the gospel or disobeyed it (compare 2 Thessalonians 1:8)? Have you obeyed Godís command to "BELIEVE ON THE LORD JESUS CHRIST" (Acts 16:31 and see also 1 John 3:23)? Adam had a big decision to make, but SO DO YOU! Adam could not remain neutral. He either had to EAT or NOT EAT the forbidden fruit. Likewise, you cannot remain neutral. Each person must either receive Godís gift or refuse Godís gift. You cannot be half a believer and half an unbeliever. You are either a 100% believer or a 100% unbeliever. There is no middle ground. You are either saved or you are not saved.

The Fall Of Man

What chapter in the Bible tells us about manís fall into sin? _____________________  (Hint: It is one of the first three chapters in Genesis).  In this chapter we find that the devil himself has appeared in the garden of Eden in order to tempt and deceive Eve. The devil fell into sin, and many angels followed him. Even so the devil wanted to see man fail and fall, and this is exactly what happened.

In Genesis 3:1 Satan spoke through the serpent by questioning God's Word and focusing Eveís attention upon the negative side of Godís command. Letís think about what the devil asked Eve:

"HATH GOD SAID?"  (Is this really what God said?)

"YE SHALL NOT EAT OF EVERY TREE OF THE GARDEN"

Did God really say that? Well, not exactly. The devil took what God said and paraphrased it or put it in his own words. Here are Godís exact words:

"OF EVERY TREE OF THE GARDEN THOU MAYEST FREELY EAT, BUT OF THE TREE OF THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOOD AND EVIL, THOU SHALT NOT EAT OF IT."

Godís command was very positive. The devil took it and made it sound very negative:

God said: "YOU MAY EAT OF EVERY TREE EXCEPT ONE."

The devil said: "YOU MAY NOT EAT OF EVERY TREE."

God had given Adam and Eve great freedom in what they could eat, but the devil wanted to get Eve to pay attention to the one restriction.

Consider again our ice cream shop illustration. The owner had said, "Of all the flavors in the shop you may freely eat except the chocolate ice cream."  The owner's offer was very gracious and generous. A negative person could come along and say, "That owner is restricting you. He is not letting  you eat of every flavor! You are really missing out on something! He will not let you taste that delicious chocolate ice cream!" All of a sudden this kind and generous owner is made to appear as a restrictive killjoy who is seeking to spoil the pleasure of others.

Do you think of God as a "restrictive killjoy"? Do you think of God as Someone who is seeking to spoil all fun and pleasure that people try to have? Do you think of God as always saying "THOU SHALT NOT" and never saying "THOU MAYEST"?   Such thinking reflects the devilís lie. There is only one reason that God gives commands. (See Deuteronomy 6:24 which says, "FOR OUR ____________ ALWAYS."  God wants to bless us, not make us miserable; the devil wants to ultimately bring sin and misery and sorrow to every member of the human race. The devil is the true KILLJOY! The devil wants to keep people from knowing the joy of obedience.

Eve answered the serpent in Genesis 3:2-3. Already we can see that she was somewhat influenced by Satanís negativism because she MINIMIZED HER GOD-GIVEN FREEDOM (verse 2), and she MAXIMIZED HER GOD-GIVEN RESTRICTION (verse 3). First, notice what she said in verse 2 and compare what it says with Genesis 2:16. Do you see any words that Eve left out? Did she take the very positive statement of God and make it any less positive?

Notice that she left out the word "E_______________."

God had given them every tree of the garden for their nourishment and enjoyment.

Notice that she left out the word "F_______________."

God had given Adam and Eve a wonderful freedom to partake from such variety.

When God makes a wonderful statement, we donít want to change it or take away from it. We want to believe every word of His statement and rejoice in its truth.

Secondly, notice what Eve said in verse 3, and compare what it says with Genesis 2:17. Eve continued to be negative. She took Godís one restriction and made it EVEN MORE RESTRICTIVE! What words did Eve ADD? ________________________________. Did God say this? ______ Eve took away from her liberty (verse 2), and she added to her restriction (verse 3).  God said, "DONíT EAT."  He did not say, "DONíT TOUCH"!

Do you ever think negatively as you think about God and the Christian life? Do you ever say things like: "As a Christian I can never have any fun."  "Go to church, read the Bible, pray--these are the only things that Christians are allowed to do!"  Have you minimized the liberty that is found in Christ? Have you maximized the restrictions? The devil wants us to think in a negative way about God and His Word and His requirements.

The devil succeeded in getting Eve to think negatively towards God and His Word. Now the devil had to do one more thing in order to catch his victim. Consider what the serpent said in Genesis 3:4-5.  (The word "gods" should be translated "God";  "gods" is the same word "God" that is found in Genesis 1:1).

Compare Genesis 3:4 with Genesis 2:17. The devil said, "Ye shall ________ surely _______." God said, "...thou shalt ________." Did the devil flatly deny the Word of God and contradict it? _________ Should we expect this kind of thing to come from the devil (see John 8:44)? _________________

Consider verse five. Satanís sin was PRIDE. Can you see this proud angel trying to coax Eve into this same sin of pride? The devil wanted Eve to think she was missing out on something and so he said, "Eve, God is keeping something from you. You can be wise like God. You are missing out on something very important. God wants to keep you in the dark. God is jealous of His position, and He does not want anyone else to come up to His level. That forbidden fruit is really just what you need!"

Do you ever feel that by following the Lord you are missing out on something?  Perhaps you feel that if you could only live as others live and do what others do, then you would begin to enjoy what you are now missing out on.  Be not deceived as Eve was!  Don't fall for the devil's lies. God is not trying to keep you from what is best; God is seeking to keep you from what would ruin and harm you. If you want to worry about missing out on something, worry about missing out on having Godís highest and best for your life. You cannot afford to miss out on that!

BEWARE OF THINKING AS EVE DID:

"I donít really have enough freedom."

"There are many restrictions placed upon me."

"Iím missing out on many things."

"If only I could break lose from these restrictions, then I would be truly free."

Whatís wrong with this kind of thinking? Where does such thinking lead a person? Where did it lead Eve? The devil does not reward people very well for following his advice. All Eve received was sin, shame, nakedness, guilt, fear, sorrow and a curse!

The fall of man is described in one short verse: GENESIS 3:6.   In 1 John 2:16 we read about the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life. Can you find these three things at work in Eve (Genesis 3:6)? The last three words of this verse are so very tragic:  _____  _____  _____. Adam failed the simple test of obedience. One little act, but it resulted in ONE GREAT FALL!
 

What Does the Garden of Eden Have To Do With Me?

A terrible forest fire can destroy hundreds of square miles of forests and woods. In James 3:5 the Bible says, "...behold, how great a matter a  ________      _______   kindleth."  One little match that is lit and thrown to the ground can result in the doom of an entire forest. Because one match was lit, every tree in the forest fell.

This chain reaction is similar to the way sin entered the world. Because of Adamís one act of disobedience, the entire forest of humanity fell and was ruined. Adam lit the match, and everyone of us has been burned. It is amazing to think of the results that this one manís act brought about!

We learn about the cataclysmic result of Adam's sin in Romans 5:12--"Wherefore, as by  ________    _________ (Adam) sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon  ______    ______,  for that all have sinned." Sin made its entrance into the world by Adam and then passed upon all men.

Why did SIN and DEATH pass to all men? Why was all of humanity infected with this horrible disease of sin and death? Why all men? Why not just Adam? Godís answer may surprise you.  When Adam sinned, we all sinned!  When Adam fell, we all fell, just like the time that the lighted match fell and caused every tree in the forest to fall. To see that Adam's fall affected all of mankind, read Romans 5:12-19.

In the old colonial days children learned how to read by using the New England Primer. In teaching the alphabet, the teacher would recite to the children a brief rhyme in order to help them to remember each letter. Children were taught the letter "A" with the rhyme, "IN ADAMíS FALL, WE SINNED ALL."  Examples of other rhymes used to teach the letters of the alphabet are these:

"B" óHeaven to find, the Bible mind.

"C" óChrist crucified, for sinners died.

"D" óThe Deluge (flood) drowned, the earth around etc.

Is this how you learned your "A, B, Cís"?

IN ADAMíS FALL, WE SINNED ALL! This rhyme was the very first thing children learned when they learned the alphabet. Romans 5:19 teaches the same thing: Because of Adamís act of disobedience, we became sinners. We are sinners by birth (see Psalm 51:5). We are sinners by nature (see Ephesians 2:1-3). We are not sinners because we sin; we sin because we are sinners.

By Adamís one act we all became sinners. We all became fallen creatures. Someone might object, "That's not fair!  Adam sinned, not I!  Adam ate the forbidden fruit, not I. Why should I suffer for what Adam did?"

The great trees of the forest fell down just because one little match fell. The consequences of Adamís one act of disobedience were widespread.  His disobedience plunged the entire human race into sin. But, there is hope! The last Adam (the Lord Jesus Christ) came into this world, and by His one act of obedience He made it possible for all men to be righteous (Romans 5:19). Adamís one act of sin brought condemnation to all; Christís one act of dying on the cross brought hope and salvation to all.

IN ADAM we are sinners, but IN CHRIST we are saints! Have you trusted the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour? Remember, He came to seek and to save lost and fallen men (Luke 19:10). Adamís sin is like the match dropped on the forest floor resulting in all the trees of the forest being burned. The Lord Jesus Christ comes along in the will of God to be the Saviour of all who have been burned by sin. Christ is able to save and salvage those who have been so burned by Adamís sin. He is able to reach and to rescue you. Has He rescued you?

"FOR AS IN __________  ALL  __________,

"EVEN SO IN _________________ SHALL ALL BE  ____________     ____________" (1 Corinthians 15:22).


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