Genesis 3 tells the sad story of how God’s perfect creation is spoilt. The consequences [of sin] are disastrous. God acts in judgment to spoil all the perfect relationships that were established at creation.
The perfect trust and intimacy have now gone. They make coverings to hide their nakedness (verse 7). And it is not long before they start squabbling, as neither will accept responsibility for their actions. The battle of the sexes has begun. God tells the woman, ‘Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you’ (verse 16). The woman ‘desires’ her husband. The word may simply refer to sexual desire, but it may also suggest a longing to take control over him (the word is used in that sense in Genesis 4:7). If so, we are being told that the woman will no longer submit willingly to her husband’s lead and he will no longer exercise it in the loving, self-sacrificial way that was God’s design.
The harmony between human beings and the created order is ended. From now on it will be a struggle to control it. Working the land will now involve much sweat and hard labour. The natural world is to be experienced not just as a friend but also as an enemy.
The punishment fits the crime. Human beings turn away from God in rebellion and he turns away from them in judgment. The warm friendship they had enjoyed with God is now destroyed.
Taken from God's Big Picture by Vaughan Roberts. Copyright(c) 2002 by Vaughan Roberts. Used by permission of InterVarsity Press, PO Box 1400, Downers Grove, IL 60515
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