< What I Learned Teaching Sunday School: God's Plan for Evangelism Part 5

Thursday, January 03, 2013

God's Plan for Evangelism Part 5

We also have a job to do: to be God’s vice regents ruling the world under Him.

Genesis 1:28 God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”

But under God’s authority. And the Tree of Knowledge was a reminder of that.
Genesis 3:17 To Adam he said, “Because you listened to your wife and ate fruit from the tree about which I commanded you, ‘You must not eat from it,’
“Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat food from it all the days of your life."
When Adam and Eve looked at the tree they would remember that their authority was limited and they were dependent on God for their lives. They were stewards, but He was King!

So biting into the fruit wasn’t just violating some arbitrary command, “Don’t eat the fruit.” They were rejecting God’s authority over them and declaring their independence from Him. Adam and Eve wanted to be “like God” so they grabbed this opportunity to shed the vice-regency and take the crown itself.

In all the universe there was only one thing that God had not placed under Adam’s feet – God Himself. In disobeying God’s command they made a conscious decision to reject Him as their king. They knew the consequences: God had told them they would “surely die” which meant they would be cast away from His presence and be his enemies rather then His friends and joyful subjects.

Genesis 2:17 17 but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.”

But they didn’t care. They went for their own pleasure and their own glory. The Bible calls this disobedience of God’s commands; whether in word, thought or deed, sin. Sin literally means “missing the mark” but they didn’t just try and miss. They deliberately opposed God’s desire for them. They broke their relationship with Him. And it affected them, their descendents and the rest of creation. They were cast out of the garden. They would have to work, hard and painfully, and eventually would die. But their spiritual life ended immediately.

And we’re all the same. Even the best of us have a basically sinful nature. We haven’t just broken our relationship with God by doing something wrong; we’ve rebelled against Him. And since He is our Lord and King we deserve His wrath. If we don’t get that. If we don’t accept that; we will never understand why the death of God’s Son was required to address it.

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