So the Lord God banished him from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he had been taken. After he drove the man out, he placed on the east side of the Garden of Eden cherubim and a flaming sword flashing back and forth to guard the way to the tree of life.
- Genesis 3:23-24
Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
- Hebrews 4:16
“I once wondered if God ever got tired of my issues – those recurring failings and sins I couldn’t ever seem to conquer. Throughout my lifelong struggle with emotional eating, I whined I was going to use up all my grace with God. I felt He would be justified to say, ‘Enough! Go away. I’m tired of your issues. Figure it out for yourself!’
“That is, until I read again the ‘first story’ of God’s grace with fresh eyes. We often think of God’s grace beginning at the cross. But as I read through the Scripture from the point of view of someone struggling with food issues, I saw a revelation of God’s grace right from the start in Genesis.
“Adam and Eve disobeyed God by eating from the forbidden tree and ushered sin in to the world. God handed down the consequences of their actions, which included banishment from the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3).
“It must have seemed to them that they had pushed past the boundaries of God’s grace. After all, He was sending them out of the garden. Whenever I’ve read that story, I thought they had to leave paradise because God was punishing them. God was disappointed in them. God was giving them what they deserved.
“But I was wrong. Their relocation was not a place of abandonment – it was a place of grace.
- Lysa TerKeurst, Craving God
Lysa TerKeurst goes on to explain why being banished was a place of grace. The sin was punishable by death and if they lived in the Garden of Eden, they could simply eat from the tree of life. They had to leave the Garden and face mortality. In the Garden, they only had torment, laden with the guilt of their sin, but outside the Garden, they had to be fruitful and multiply; they had to toil to provide their needs; and they had to rely on the God who they had betrayed in order to survive.
We have the same choice. We can sit around and do nothing, feeling sorry for ourselves, or we can turn to the only one who can help us survive in this world, God.
Regardless of who is in charge of the country where you live, we must rely on God. He is ultimately in control. Remember that it is impossible to push beyond the boundaries of God’s Grace in this world. He can forgive. In turn, we must learn to forgive others. Those two things could make the greatest change in our world, far ore effective than anything a government could do: Turn to God, relying upon Him and forgiving one another.
Soli Deo Gloria. Only to God be the Glory.