Yesterday we began to look at God’s redemptive response to man’s rebellion. We are expounding on the question God asks in Genesis 3:9, “The Lord God called to the man and said to him, ‘Where are you?’”
We are in the middle of a three-part blog on God’s incredible question to two rebellious, fear-stricken, on-the-run sinners. Yesterday we examined the HONOR of the question. Today we will rejoice in the HOPE in the question, and on Friday we will gaze upon the Heart behind the question.
The HOPE in the Question
Adam and Eve’s actions immediately after their choice to disobey God make it clear that they believed all hope was lost. Their consciences were burning, and they tried to cover their naked sin with fig leaves. They heard the familiar (and formerly delightful) sound of the Lord God walking in the garden; instead of running to Him, they ran away from Him and hid. They ran miserably away from the One who had given them everything, including an intimate, loving relationship. But then, when all hope seemed irretrievably lost, God called to them: “Where are you?”
The question confirms that Adam was, indeed, lost because of his decision to deny God – and in the process, to deny himself. Yet, even in his state of alienation from God, this question of hope confirms that our loving Lord intended to deliver mercy in the middle of their misery.
Think for a moment of all of the different responses God could have delivered to Adam and Eve after their rebellion. Do any of the following questions sound like something you might say when someone does you wrong?
- “How could you do such a thing!”
- “What in the world have you done!”
- “I can’t believe you did this to me!”
Instead of responding to the first sinners with harsh questions like these, the voice of Grace called to them . . . “Where are you?” You see, regardless of what circumstances of life you are currently in, even if a situation seems utterly hopeless, you still have hope. God came after Adam and Eve, and He comes after us every time we turn from Him and choose to do what is right in our own eyes.
One final point regarding the hope in this question: despite all the doctrines the proud Pharisaical heart devises for free will and man “choosing” God, man never has and will never seek after his God. Scripture is quite clear on this matter: “The sinful mind is hostile to God. It does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so. Those controlled by the sinful nature cannot please God” (Romans 8:7-8 NIV). Man does not go looking for a relationship with God; it is God who does the pursuing – God and God alone. There is great hope and comfort in knowing that! If I thought for a moment I had anything to do with my salvation, despair would define my life, not devotion to my Savior. Think about it for a moment; if your salvation depended on you to even the slightest degree, what is the likelihood of you spending eternity in the presence of a perfectly holy and just God?
God seeks the sinner; the sinner never seeks God. This is the greatest hope that the world has ever known! God loves us enough to call us out of our sin and rebellion: “Where are you?”
For the Christian this HOPE is summed up in Paul explanation about God’s redemptive response, “At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy” (Titus 3:3-5 NIV).
Tomorrow we will finish up our consideration of God’s redemptive response to man’s sinful rebellion.
This is God’s Word For Today … This Is Grace For The Journey
Rest and Rejoice in this eternal truth!
Ephesians 4:7 – “But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it.”
Hebrews 4:16 – “Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”