Summary: Adam and Eve took a nosedive into sin when they listened to the snake. This great fall was followed by a greater recovery: restoration & salvation, won by Christ.
The right winger skates down the side as his teammate with the puck leads the charge. Suddenly, a big, burly defenseman on the other team gives this right wing a colossal body check into the boards. He goes down to the ice, missing a few more teeth, crumpled over in pain. Satisfied that he did his job, the punishing defenseman looks for someone else to harass. After a few moments of lying motionless on the ice, the right wing gets up and starts skating, not to the safety of his bench, but back into the play. He sneaks by the defense that wasn’t expecting to see him, receives a pass, and flips the puck past a stunned goalie. The next morning on the front page of the sports section, there are two pictures of this hockey player. The first picture shows him getting absolutely pummelled, and the headline reads, “Great Fall…” The second picture shows him pushing that puck into the net, with the headline finishing with the words, “Greater Recovery.”
“Great Fall – Greater Recovery” would also be a good headline for our sermon text this morning. Here we see Adam and Eve fall flat onto their faces; and they look pretty ridiculous doing it. But here we see the Lord God making a miraculous recovery: lifting Adam and Eve and a world of sinners back to a life of perfection and righteousness. Great Fall – Greater Recovery.
Genesis Chapter 3 is the saddest chapter in the whole Bible. In Genesis 1-2, we have the account of the Lord God creating this magnificent and exquisitely pure world. Step by step, God adds piece after piece to his creation, until it is finally ready for the masterpiece of God’s creation: human beings. Then God creates the man, then he creates the woman, then he brings them together and establishes marriage. Then he blesses them and makes them the caretakers of this majestic earth that he created for them.
And now we get to Chapter 3, where this perfection came falling down like a house of cards. In the verses before our text picks up, the devil approached Eve. The devil approached her with the same thing that he uses to get everyone to fall, a lure. We use lures when we go fishing. A lure is something that is supposed to look good to the fish you are trying to catch. When I was growing up, I had a lure that looked like an injured fish. The fish was bent a little, right at the bend there was a reddish spot that was supposed to look like a wound, and as this lure moved through the water, it simulated a fish that was having trouble swimming. This lure looked like a nice, easy lunch for a bigger fish, until the fish tried to take a bite and found out that he was the one who was going to be lunch. The devil also uses lures to try to catch people. And he’s got a whole bunch of lures that look very appealing to people. In our text, the devil opened up his tackle box and pulled out the double lure of knowledge and power. He tried to get Eve to think, “Eve, you know good, but you don’t know evil. Just think, if you knew what evil was like, you’d be just like God! Wouldn’t that be cool?” And Eve found this lure irresistible. Her husband Adam was also tantalized by the thought of being like God, and he bit as well.