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Genesis: Grace from the Beginning
Mind Games-Genesis 3
The fall of man did not begin when Eve ate the fruit, but the fall of man began when the seed of doubt was placed into the mind of Eve. In Genesis 3:1, [the serpent] “said to the woman, “Did God really say...” This seed of doubt caused Eve to doubt God, not only His provision but also His abundance. How often do we doubt God’s Word—His provision, His blessings? When we believe the lie that says there has to be more and allow Satan to deceive us into thinking there is something better, then we do not trust the ONE who has provided us with everything and more to begin with! In essence, we live in disbelief by saying, “Did God really say...” or did we hear him right? Of course, if it comes directly from the Word of God we heard Him right! He tells us the plans He has for us right there in His Word; therefore, we don’t have to doubt what He desires for us because His Word is perfect and true! It is clear what God wants for our lives, because it is written for us to see in His perfect Word! It is Satan who comes in and desires to wreak havoc on the good God intends; and when we fall prey our lives are in disarray and we are left with fear and shame, just as Adam and Eve were. So, may we submit to God’s Perfect Authority instead of placing ourselves in positions that declare authority, because only He knows what is best for our lives!
Lord, give us eyes to see past the deception—the doubt—that Satan desires to plant in our minds, to rest in and be content with Your Perfect Word. Lord, may we not allow the seed of doubt to be planted, to take root and grow effecting every area of our lives and the lives of those around us. Lord, may we not doubt your Word and what You have commanded us to do. May we trust You and You alone for You alone are deserving of our trust, our devotion, our all!
The Mark of Cain-Genesis 4
Is there any reassurance to be found in the story of Cain? Cain killed his brother, Abel, and because of this sin was driven “...out from the Lord’s presence and lived in the land of Nod, east of Eden.” (Genesis 4:16) Nod means wandering. Cain was a restless wanderer. (Genesis 4:14) This punishment was more than he could bear, to be hidden from the Lord’s presence. (Genesis 4:13,14) Does anybody, like me, at times feel like a restless wanderer maybe because of disobedience? Sometimes, this restlessness is more than we can bear and may be the consequence of our own choosing. At these times, do we doubt God’s love for us? When we read Cain’s story, do we doubt God’s love for him? The good news is this: Cain was a sinner, just as I am a sinner and reassurance of God’s love for us can be found in Genesis 4:15, “Then the Lord put a mark on Cain so that no one who found him would kill him.” He put his mark on Cain, just as He puts His mark on us as believers. That’s reassuring to me to know that God still loves me and has me under His protective care no matter what sin or past sin. He sees our need for Him, our realization that our punishment is more than we can bear, and so He saves us with His mark of Mercy.
Lord, where am I allowing sin to dictate my life? Am I being driven to restlessness due to this sin? Thank you for loving me despite my sin and for the reassurance of being under your protective care. May I see my need for You continually and may Your mark of Mercy be evident in my life.
Imperfect Faith-Genesis 6-9
Noah wasn’t a perfect man, but he was a man who desired to walk with God and did so. He loved the Lord and his heart was inclined to do good at times. The difference between Noah and the generation he was a part of is found in Genesis 6:5: “...every inclination of the thoughts of man’s heart was only evil all the time.” The Lord was grieved (6:6), “but Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord" (6:8). “The Lord then said to Noah, “Go into the ark, you and your whole family, because I have found you righteous in this generation.” (7:1) The Lord is saying I will protect you and your whole family because you love me, because your heart is not solely bent on evil. And we see not only his heart’s desire for God, but evidence of his faith in Genesis 7:5, “And Noah did all that the Lord commanded him.” We see a living faith in Noah, not a perfect faith. Evidence of his imperfect faith is found in Genesis 9:20-23. Here Noah planted a vineyard, but he drank too much of its wine and he became drunk laying uncovered in his tent. Two of Noah’s sons turned their faces away from his nakedness and covered his shame. It’s nothing Noah did to deserve this mercy, it is just the sons’ desire to give it. They love him that much and God loves us that much! He also has covered our sin even though we don’t deserve it. Even in our imperfect faith, we have a merciful God who covers our sin on the Cross without even looking back at it! He doesn’t desire to see our sin, but only desires to love us and see our love for Him.
Lord, may our hearts be inclined to do good and not evil. May we rest in your protective care, even though we have an imperfect faith. Thank you for the mercy you give even when we don’t deserve it. Thank you for loving us that much and may our love for You grow stronger with each passing day.