What does Genesis 3:10 mean?
ESV: And he said, “I heard the sound of you in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked, and I hid myself.”
NIV: He answered, 'I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.'
NASB: He said, 'I heard the sound of You in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid myself.'
CSB: And he said, "I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked, so I hid."
NLT: He replied, 'I heard you walking in the garden, so I hid. I was afraid because I was naked.'
KJV: And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.
In the previous verse, God called out to the hiding Adam: "Where are you?" This used a singular term, meaning one "you," not a plural "you" which would include both Adam and Eve. God asked this question in the same way parents ask their disobedient child to explain an incident. He already knows the truth, but the question gives the child an opportunity to confess and do the right thing.
In this verse, Adam answers. It's easy to picture him wide-eyed, desperate in the awareness of what he has done. He is full of shame at his newly-perceived nakedness, and fearful of how God will respond. It's crucial to remember that this moment is unprecedented. Human sin had never happened before. No process existed for confession, judgment, or restoration. Adam, in this moment, honestly has no idea what to expect. He has no knowledge of how God will react, and knows only a desperate need to hide his unholy sin from a holy God.
Adam's response is not the whole story, of course. He does not immediately confess to eating from the restricted tree. He admits his fear, likely an entirely new emotion. He focuses on his nakedness, not wanting to be seen by God.
Genesis 3:8–24 describes the consequences of man's rebellion against God. After falling to temptation, humans are ashamed and foolishly attempt to hide from God. When confronted with their sin, the man and woman confess, but also attempt to shift the blame to others. Adam even blames God. In response, God issues three individual ''curses'' which affect humanity to this day. Mankind can no longer stay in the ''very good'' garden, and is banished. Even so, God continues to provide for His creation.
Genesis 3 tells the story of paradise lost by the willfulness of human sin. Humanity was originally given every perfect thing they could need or want, and virtually no restrictions. Despite that, Adam and Eve needed only a bit of prompting from a talking serpent to disobey their good Creator. Immediately overcome by shame and quickly cursed by God, the painful story of human history begins with their exit from the Garden of Eden.
Genesis 2 ended with the last glimpse of a sinless world. Adam and Eve are perfect in themselves, in their purpose, and in their relationship as husband and wife. Chapter 3 tells the story of that paradise lost; the result of the first willful human sin. The consequences: immediate shame and lifelong separation from their home with God. Chapter 4 will describe the beginning of their lives together, the beginning of the painful story of human history.
The book of Genesis establishes fundamental truths about God. Among these are His role as the Creator, His holiness, His hatred of sin, His love for mankind, and His willingness to provide for our redemption. We learn not only where mankind has come from, but why the world is in its present form. The book also presents the establishment of Israel, God's chosen people. Many of the principles given in other parts of Scripture depend on the basic ideas presented here in the book of Genesis. Within the framework of the Bible, Genesis explains the bare-bones history of the universe leading up to the captivity of Israel in Egypt, setting the stage for the book of Exodus.
Accessed 12/6/2023 10:39:32 PM
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