I was given the honor of preaching the sermon at Cornerstone Church last Sunday. Here for your perusal is the first excerpt from my notes…
As I begin I have to give credit where credit is due to my lead pastor Barry Risto for helping me with this sermon. He may not know he helped me, but up until last week I had several directions that were gnawing at the edges of my mind for this sermon. No matter how I tried though, I could not settle on any of them until Pastor began to preach his sermon. He spoke about some of the things humanity lost in the fall of mankind, when Adam and Even ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. He preached using the letter “S” and explained that when Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden something changed in the human race. We lost certain things we were meant to have because we became at that moment changed and controlled by the power of sin. In the fall we lost our “significance” our “sufficiency” and our “security”.
As my pastor preached the Holy Spirit began taking me down rabbit trails and out of that came this sermon “Unintended Consequences”. As Pastor preached using the letter “S” last week to describe what was lost in the fall, this week I am going to describe the fall of man from the stand point of “A.A.R.P.”
We don’t spend much time thinking about the fall from grace that happened in the Garden of Eden. Few people, maybe none of us, really understand just how much fell apart in those moments when Eve ate the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Some people don’t even realize we have lost anything at all. They consider the world a thing of beauty that is getting better and better, but the truth is, that mind-set denies reality and shows no understanding of what sin has done to mankind, to our world and to the very fabric of reality itself.
When Adam and Eve sinned they let the power of sin into the world and as Pastor Risto taught last week at the moment of their disobedience to God they lost their significance, their sufficiency and their security. But they lost even more. I guess we need to start by letting the story tell itself.
The Bible tells us that at the very beginning of the world, God made one man and one woman who were to become the father and mother of all mankind. I believe this is actually how it happened. Call me crazy. Call me a red-neck. Call me gullible or whatever else you want. This is what the Bible teaches, so I think this is what actually happened. Anyway, God put the man and the woman in a place called the Garden of Eden and then the Bible goes on to tell the story this way
Genesis. 2:15- 3:19
The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. 16 And the Lord God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; 17 but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.”… Adam and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame… Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”
2 The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, 3 but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’”
4 “You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. 5 “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
6 When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. 7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.
What do you think Adam and Eve hoped to gain in disobeying God?