So the LORD God said to the serpent: “Because you have done this, you are cursed more than all cattle, and more than every beast of the field; on your belly you shall go, and you shall eat dust all the days of your life. And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel.” To the woman He said: “I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception; in pain you shall bring forth children; your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you.” Then to Adam He said, “Because you have heeded the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree of which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat of it’: cursed is the ground for your sake; in toil you shall eat of it all the days of your life. Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you, and you shall eat the herb of the field. In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for dust you are, and to dust you shall return.” (Genesis 3:14-19)
Without consequences, commandments are just advice. When God commanded Adam and Eve not to eat of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, He meant every word. He will not be mocked. Broken laws require definite consequences—sins which are committed bring judgment which is due. Thus, the curses of Genesis 3 are pronounced.
The LORD God spoke first to the serpent. From that time on, serpents would be belly crawlers and dust eaters. And there would be ongoing hostility between the devil (seed of the serpent) and Messiah (Seed of the woman). In the end, the serpent’s head would be crushed.
The woman was given multiplied sorrow and conception. She would be the sensitive one, feeling much. Her role as mother would bring many sorrows. She would want something from her husband that he wasn’t interested in giving her. Instead, the man would use his strength to rule over her.
The man was relegated to a hard and laborious existence. Making a living would not come easily. Work would be difficult. Much of man’s daily energy would be consumed by what he must do to make ends meet.
The curses upon the man and woman are made much less severe in Christ. In Christ the woman has the hope of godly offspring and an identity of her own apart from her husband. Her relationship with God gives her perspective that the pre or non-believer do not have. The man who loves Jesus calls upon the Lord for a right sense of priorities and put his wife and family in the place they deserve. His work is blessed with Divine success as he obeys Matthew 6:33. There is much hope and strength for him. In Christ, the reversal (the fall) is reversed!
For the serpent, it is only a matter of time, and he’ll be burning forever in the lake of fire. Not an ounce of hope for him.
For Further Review
1. Think about it: laws that have no consequences are just advice. Now think about God and the moral law He gave us. What are the consequences for breaking His law? How did Jesus’ death at Calvary deal with those consequences?
2. For you ladies: how does the curse upon the woman affect you? How does being in Christ change things?
3, For you men: how does the curse upon the man affect you? How does being in Christ change things? How does this motivate you to be a more godly man?
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