Summary: This is not your typical Mother’s Day message.
A Tale of Two Mothers
Good morning and Happy Mother’s Day to all of the mothers here today. This morning, in pulpits around the country, pastors will be singing the praises of their mothers and the mothers of their children. They will probably talk about the impact their mothers had on their lives and some of the life lessons she imparted to them. Traditionally this is typical of a Mother’s Day message.
But this morning, we’re not going to do a traditional Mother’s Day message – although we will talk about the impact mothers have. The impact we will focus on are the decisions that two mothers made that changed the world. The mothers we’re going to look at this morning, and not in a great deal of depth, are Eve and Mary. Each made decisions that changed the course of human history.
And before I move on, let me say this: the mother is in a coveted position as far as God is concerned. She has an influence in the lives of children that a husband does not. Now listen to me: that’s the way God designed it. That’s why mothers are nurturing and fathers less so. That’s why mothers feel more empathy and fathers less so.
Now Genesis 4:1 says “And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD.”
We see in this verse the very first birth of a human being. Eve is the mother of the human race and we see this in Genesis 3:20. “And Adam called his wife’s name Eve; because she was the mother of all living.” But I want you to notice something. She gives birth to her first son in Genesis 4. What happened in Genesis 3 before this occurred?
We know the story. The serpent enters the Garden of Eden and, over a period of time, deceives Eve into questioning God’s Word. In dialogue that’s reminiscent of an attorney questioning a witness, the serpent finds out that Eve is willing to change God’s commandment and she is also willing to add to it.
But before we look at what she does, we must see what God actually said. Turn to Genesis 2. We’re going to read verses 16 and 17.
(16) And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:
(17) But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.
God gives Adam and Eve permission to eat from every tree except one – the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. And, God also says that if they ate of that tree, if they disobeyed Him, they will die. Are you with me?
Okay, now let’s see how Eve responds in Genesis 3.
(2) And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:
(3) But the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.
Now I ask you, is that what God said? No! God was very clear. Don’t eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil because if you do, you shall surely die – no maybe, no perhaps. You will die.
The serpent convinces Eve she will not die and tells her that the only reason God doesn’t want her to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil is because if she does, she’ll be like God. I read this and it nearly brings me to tears. You see, spiritually, Eve was already like God and we see this in Genesis 1:26a – “And God said, Let us make man in our image (man will have God’s spiritual life), after our likeness (simply, man will look like God).”
The serpent flat out lied to Eve and she believed him over her Creator. Let that sink in ladies and gentlemen. She sees the fruit. Well, let’s look at verse 6.
(6) And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that is was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her;. And he did eat.
Eve convinces Adam that eating of the forbidden tree will not harm them. So they eat and both immediately die spiritually – they lose God’s spiritual life. God said you will surely die. They surely died!
We then see God walking in the garden and calling out for them. Adam says they were hiding because they were naked. You know the story. God asks “Who told you that you were naked? Did you eat of the forbidden tree?” Adam first blames God (“the woman whom thou gavest to me be with me, she gave me of the tree”) and then he blames Eve and she blames the serpent (“The serpent beguiled me and I did eat.”).