Summary: As we look at this sad story of the first sin, we see a very real picture of how Satan often works.
Top Ten Ways to Know You Need To Study Genesis: 10. Your pastor announces a new sermon series from Genesis… and you check the Table of Contents to see if it’s in your Bible. 9. You think Abraham, Isaac and Jacob had a few hits during the sixties. 8. You open to Genesis and a WWII War Bond falls out. 7. Your favorite OT patriarch is Hercules. 6. A small family of woodchucks has taken up residence in the book. 5. You become frustrated because Charlton Heston isn’t listed in your Bibles concordance. 4. You catch your kids looking at pictures in their Bibles of the Garden of Eden and you demand, “Who gave you this trash?” 3. You think the Tower of Babel is in Paris, France. 2. You keep falling for it every time your pastor says, “Please turn to the book of Melchizedek, chapter 14.” 1. The kids are asking you too many questions about your unusual bedtime Bible story: “Noah the Shepherd Boy and His Ark of Many Colors.”
This year I have begun reading the Bible straight through. Usually in my devotional time I skip around the New Testament. I love reading the letters of Paul and John and Peter. I love reading the words of Jesus. For some reason, and I think many of you can probably relate to this, for some reason I find it difficult to sit down and read many of the books in the Old Testament. Some of them are great like Psalms and Proverbs. And there are some great stories you can find there. But if I finish a particular book and I’m trying to decide on the next one to read I tend to look in the New Testament. So, I’ve decided that, at least this once, I’m going to read the Bible straight through.
Obviously, the place to start when reading a book straight through is the beginning. So I’ve been reading in Genesis this month. And really, there are some great lessons found throughout the book of Genesis. There are some great truths that we can take and apply to our lives. And so, beginning tonight, I want us to take a trek throughout this first book of the Bible and see what’s there for us. We probably won’t cover everything that’s can be discovered in this book of stories. But I do want to point out some of the highlights and gather what we can.
Tonight, I want to have you turn with me to chapter three. This is the chapter in which we’re told of the day that changed the course of history. God had created everything good. Man and woman were happy to govern the animals and enjoy God’s daily presence. But in a matter of moments bright hopes of a perfect world became darkened by sin. This is the story of that day. Gen. 3:1-13…
Have you ever done something that you said you would never do? Have you ever been to a spot in your life that you took a second to look where you were and then wondered how in the world you got there? Have you ever stopped to look where you stood spiritually and had to admit that you weren’t as close to God as you used to be?
I know in my own life, there has been time after time that I’ve had to admit to myself and to the Lord that I had slipped away from Him. You ever gotten to that point? Have you ever gotten to that point and wondered what happened? If you have ever been there or if you’re there now, I think I can tell you why. It’s because there is a subtle, clever deceiver that is working as hard as he can to drag you down and cause you to fail.
Years ago, when Billy Graham’s children were small, their family was enjoying a meal together when someone began singing the chorus, “I’ve got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart.” The rest of the family chimed in on the song. They concluded with that famous verse, “And if the devil doesn’t like it he can sit on a tack. Ouch!” When they finished, Billy Graham sternly looked at his children and said, “I don’t want you to sing that verse ever again.” Then the children quickly asked, “But, why Daddy?” The famous evangelist replied, “Because the devil is a good devil.” They looked confused and so he explained a little further. “The devil does a very good job of being the devil. He is real and powerful, and he is no joking matter.”
This evening, I’m here to tell you that the devil is a good devil. His job is to tempt and he is good at his job. I think sometimes we underestimate him. I think sometimes, just like we do with God, we put Satan in a box. Sometimes we think of Satan as simply that roaring lion seeking souls to devour. I’ve preached a message about him being like that. But sometimes we just think of Him as a loud, obnoxious tempter who comes at us like a flood. And I think we forget what Paul said in his letter to the Corinthian church, that Satan transforms himself into an angel of light. I think we forget that he can come at us from many different angles.