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October 17, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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“So he said, ‘I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself.’ And He said, ‘Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you that you should not eat?’”—Genesis 3:10-11 (NKJV)
Four central ideas are at work in today’s Scripture: 1) Adam (and Eve) heard God calling as they were hiding; 2) God calls out their sin with a question on authority; 3) God addresses Adam to answer for the sin; and 4) God rhetorically questions what He already knows to be true.
So, what rests at the heart of these ideas and how can we apply this to our lives?
First, Adam heard God’s voice. Unfortunately, the once sweet calling was suddenly laden with an unfamiliar tone any disobedient child can recognize. One can imagine a tone of sadness, rejection, even longing. I imagine they felt God’s voice flood through every fiber of their beings as they peered out from their hiding place.
Second, God asked what authority they were under. The Lord’s voice took on a commanding tone questioning the credibility of their source. Any soldier can attest to the disapproving sting when a commanding officer addresses insubordination. Adam and Eve surely felt this.
Third, God calls out Adam, not Eve, to account for their sin. Remember, these two were in a marriage covenant. As such, the man is the head of the wife (Ephesians 5:23), meaning Adam was accountable and responsible for Eve. Adam’s order in creation requires this special relationship—one of care, provision, and nourishment.
Lastly, we see God do what God likes to do—ask rhetorical questions. He does this hundreds of times throughout Scripture—to Adam, Abraham, Job, and many others. Jesus continues this technique when asking, “Who do people say I am? Who do you say I am?” (Mark 8:27, 29). He does this to get our attention, to nudge us to understanding, and to promote judicious discernment.
What this all means for us is that God knows exactly where we are—physically and spiritually. We can try to run from Him, especially when we sin, but His voice, His love will always penetrate those deepest hiding places. After all, He wants to be our hiding place (Psalm 32:7) and wants us to abide in Him (John 15:4). And His Word, His voice should always take the authoritative role in our lives. The next time you sense the Lord questioning your motive or actions, pause to listen and then rejoice because the God of the universe is searching your heart.
DIG: If God is omniscient (meaning all knowing), why does He pose questions to us?
DISCOVER: Search Scripture for other areas where God asks questions to His people. What are the motives behind the questions and the results?
DO: What authority are you operating under? In your relationship with God, with your family, and at work, are you hiding from responsibility? If so, take some time to ask God to search your heart and redirect you.
Lisa Supp lives in Utah and has served within the CCFL Web and Prayer Ministry since 2011. She also volunteers as an editor on the CCFL Prayer Wall and is a writer on the Communications Team. Retired from teaching, Lisa and her husband Ron volunteer at their local Calvary Chapel and share a passion for Scripture, apologetics, and education.