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Genesis 3 and the nature of temptation, part 3

September 15, 2014

Grace to you all! I’m Channing Kilgore and serve as an associate pastor at South Whitwell Baptist Church. Today we look at part three of a four part series from the original temptation of sin in the Garden of Eden. So far the temptation shows us how sinful man looks for alternative revelation besides God’s revelation and the difference between honest and dishonest doubters of God’s word. There’s yet another inference in Genesis 3:1 “Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said to the woman, “Indeed, has God said, ‘You shall not eat from any tree of the garden’?”

A third accusation lodged within the Tempter’s question is that God’s word and ways are too restrictive. This complaint is heard in various ways today. The original suggestion was “Shouldn’t God’s blessing in what He has done be broad enough to include ‘all the trees’?” Our original parents felt the weight of this temptation. “Yes, why is God holding out on us? Why can’t we have every tree; why is this one tree forbidden?” Unsurprisingly, Satan and our sin seek to get us to look at what we don’t have rather than what all we do have from our gracious God. Free, open access to all trees but one. Sin’s ploy: promote coveting. To covet is to desire what God has forbidden. It’s why politicians are so successful. They play on man’s sinful propensity to covet other people’s stuff. “Vote for me, and I’ll get you more government benefits from other people’s tax money.” But I digress! –

We hear Satan’s voice whisper in its current forms of “Why is the Bible God’s only book? Isn’t it narrow minded to say Jesus is the ONLY way? Doesn’t living by the Bible make life dull and boring? Why can’t we enjoy everything in this life and not be punished for it?”

Sin promotes itself under the guise of freedom. The fact is our parents didn’t deserve any trees. Nor do you and I deserve any ‘trees’ from the Lord, no matter what those ‘trees’ might be! The Lord knows how we operate best. And He knows what will truly bring us the most freedom. A train is most free when it runs on the narrow tracks it was designed for. No matter how free a train may think it is, it really goes nowhere without being on the right tracks. So the fact that God even offers even one way of salvation is more than we deserve. (John 14:6) There is only one way to God but it is freely open to all. That’s a lot of ‘tree’ for man to have. The forbidden fruit is to try to find another way besides Christ to God. Your sin wants you to have another ‘tree.’  But don’t be deceived – sin always brings enslavement (John 8:34). Yet Christ makes us free! (John 8:36) Questions/comments?

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