November 30, 2014

Advent


Genesis 3:8-15

8That evening they heard the Lord God walking in the garden, and they hid from him among the trees.9But the Lord God called out to the man, “Where are you?”

10He answered, “I heard you in the garden; I was afraid and hid from you, because I was naked.”

11“Who told you that you were naked?” God asked. “Did you eat the fruit that I told you not to eat?”

12The man answered, “The woman you put here with me gave me the fruit, and I ate it.”

13 The Lord God asked the woman, “Why did you do this?”

She replied, “The snake tricked me into eating it.”

God Pronounces Judgment

14Then the Lord God said to the snake, “You will be punished for this; you alone of all the animals must bear this curse: From now on you will crawl on your belly, and you will have to eat dust as long as you live.15 I will make you and the woman hate each other; her offspring and yours will always be enemies. Her offspring will crush your head, and you will bite her offspring's heel.”

THE NEED FOR A SAVIOR

READ:

Genesis 3:8-15

Thank you for joining us for this Advent journey as we focus on the coming of Jesus, our King, Savior, Redeemer and Friend.

Today we’re focusing on the need for a Savior—a need that goes back to the opening pages of the Scriptures. Adam and Eve first bring sin into the world when they disobey God’s command: don’t eat the fruit of one, specific tree. (Well, to be specific, Satan, in the form of a snake, entices Eve to eat it—a fact that Eve makes sure to point out when God brings it up. Then she gives some to Adam and he eats it, too.) This disobedience not only damaged the relationship between Adam and Eve and their Creator, but also destroyed God’s relationship with everything that God created. The rest is history.

So as we begin our journey, we start with the reason for the season – the reason for Jesus. We are made in God’s image. We read in Genesis 1, “Then God said, ‘And now we will make human beings; they will be like us and resemble us. They will have power over the fish, the birds, and all animals, domestic and wild, large and small’” (Gen. 1:26).

God also gave us the freedom to make choices. When we choose to disobey God, our choices reflect our selfish desires and/or Satan’s influence. In the case of Adam and Eve, they reflect both.

But the Advent season is a wonderful reminder of the arrival of Jesus, the One who defeated the evil one on the cross. The apostle Paul alludes to the powerful image in verse 15 of today’s passage to communicate that truth. Jesus’ enemies are under Jesus’ control, “God put all things under Christ's feet and gave him to the church as supreme Lord over all things” (Ephesians 1:22). We are reminded that, because of Jesus, our sins can be forgiven and we have the strength to overcome sin. We also look forward to another Advent, the second coming of Jesus, when Satan will be destroyed.

PRAYER:

Dear Father, I pray that you will help me to focus on you and all that you’ve done in Jesus, during this Advent season. Thank you for today’s reminder of my need for a Savior. Thank you for sending Jesus so that my sins are forgiven. Thank you that he gives me the strength to overcome evil and temptation. Please protect me from the evil one. Amen.

DIG DEEPER:

What is one example of God giving you strength to overcome temptation in a specific situation? Thank God for that example and that he gives you strength to obey him.