What does Genesis 3:9 mean?
ESV: But the Lord God called to the man and said to him, "Where are you?"
NIV: But the Lord God called to the man, "Where are you?"
NASB: Then the Lord God called to the man, and said to him, 'Where are you?'
CSB: So the Lord God called out to the man and said to him, "Where are you?"
NLT: Then the Lord God called to the man, 'Where are you?'
KJV: And the Lord God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?
NKJV: Then the Lord God called to Adam and said to him, “Where are you?”
Verse Commentary:
Previous verses revealed the first consequence of human sin: shame and guilt. The combination of knowledge, disobedience, and human frailty led to an overpowering urge to be covered and to hide from God. Prior to this, the nakedness of Adam and Eve was nothing to be ashamed of. Their minds were pure and innocent, so there was no reason to be embarrassed or self-conscious. The immediate result of having their eyes opened to good and evil was that the man and woman understood their own evil and the goodness they had lost.

Adam had never hidden from God before. God had never had to ask where the man was. It's not that God did not know, of course. God's question here is no different from any other parent who asks a question to their child, when they already know the answer. God wants Adam to answer, to reveal himself to God, and to confess.

It should be noted that the Hebrew word for "you," both here and in verse 11, is singular. In other words, at this moment, God is not calling to Eve, or challenging her actions. He is not asking "where are you [two]?" He is specifically asking, "where are you, [Adam]?"

Adam, right from the beginning, is treated as the one ultimately responsible for the fall of mankind (Romans 5:12).
Verse Context:
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.
Chapter Summary:
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.
Chapter Context:
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.
Book Summary:
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.
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