The old Sunday school chorus illustrates the truth of today’s message.
“I’m inside, outside, upside, downside happy all the time.
I’m inside, outside, upside, downside happy all the time.
Since Jesus Christ came in, and freed my life from sin
I’m inside, outside, upside, downside happy all the time.”
I THE RUIN OF GOD’S CREATION
The Lord planted a garden – Eden (Genesis 2:8a)
The Lord placed Adam in Eden (Genesis 2:8b, 15)
The Lord provided for Adam’s every need (Genesis 2:9)
The Lord provided a wife for Adam – Eve (Genesis 2:18, 21-25)
The Lord prohibited one thing (Genesis 2:17)
Eating the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (Gen.2:17)
This was not an apple tree!
This was not sexual relations as some have falsely taught!
We know the fruit looked good to eat
What God said:
1. don’t eat the fruit (Gen.2:17a)
2. if you do eat you will certainly die that same day (Gen.2:17b)
What the serpent said to Eve:
Did God really say that you should not eat (Gen.3:1)
He was seeking to place a doubt in Eve’s mind
What Eve said to the serpent:
Two things – she added to and took away from what God said:
1. Added: God said we must not eat or touch it (Gen.3:3a)
2. Took away: Because we might die (Gen.3:3b)
What the serpent replied to Eve:
1. You will not die (Gen. 3:4)
2. God doesn’t want you to have what is best for you (Gen.3:5)
Who was Eve to believe – God or the serpent?
God said you will die – the serpent said you won’t die
God implied I want the best for you – the serpent said no he doesn’t
This was a crisis of belief! – who do I believe?
Eve saw that the fruit looked good to eat and would make her wise (Gen.3:6)
Eve and Adam who was with her believed the serpent and ate (Gen.3:6)
Their unbelief led to rebellion against God and the ruin of creation
The choice that all must make is belief or unbelief (even neglect)
They were ashamed and afraid (Gen.3:7-10)
The blame game (Adam – Eve – serpent) (Gen.3:12,13)
The serpent cursed, Eve pain, Adam hard work, Creation cursed (Gen.3:14-19)
They were cast out of Eden (Gen.3:23,24)
Death is separation:
1. Physical death – separation of body and soul, from loved ones
2. Spiritual death – separation from the life of God
3. Eternal death
They were cut off from God
All their descendants were cut off from God (Rom.5:12)
The entire creation experienced agony and suffering (Rom.8:21,22)
Adam and Eve were now separated from the life of God. They could never return to Eden.
As God had said they died that very same day. They died spiritually and eventually their bodies would die and they would return to dust.
Their soul became the strong man within and dominated their spirit.
II GOD’S REMEDY
Promise made: The seed (masc. sing.) of the woman (Gen.3:15)
Promise kept: Jesus born of the virgin Mary (Mat.1:21,23)
Salvation: from the penalty and power of our sin (Mat.1:21; Jn.1:29; Rom.6:6)
Spiritual rebirth: the dead made alive (John 3:5,6)
Spiritual temple: God living within (1 Cor.6:19; Rom.5:5; 8:9; John 14:16,17)
A new creation (2 Cor.5:17)
A new citizenship – Heaven (Phil.3:20)
A new destiny – Heavenly bliss with Jesus (2 Cor.5:1,2)
A new security – Sealed by the Holy Spirit (Eph.1:13)
A new righteousness – Righteousness of Christ (2 Cor. 5:21)
God’s remedy was to place the Holy Spirit within man through the new birth.
Instead of God who is spirit interacting with man’s spirit from outside He now dwelt within man’s new creation nature.
This state is better than what existed in Eden.
Man’s spirit, under the control of the Holy Spirit who is fully God, now became the strong man and directs man’s soul and body and his interaction with the outside world.
GOD WANTS TO TURN YOU INSIDE OUT:
The natural man operates from the outside in. The world around affects his body and soul through his five senses. His soul in turn dominates and controls his spirit.
God wants to turn you inside out. His desire is for your spirit to be under the control and direction of the Holy Spirit, who in turn directs your soul and body which controls your interaction with the outside world.
Matthew and I riding the California Screamer.
We didn’t check with the designer or operator; we just got in and held on. So it is with the Christian life; we don’t question our designer (God) or the operator (The Holy Spirit); we just get in and hold on. The Christian life may be terrifying at times and it may also be exhilarating at times. We can’t get off part way; we are in it to the end. There may be some ups and downs but we know that God is in control.
Something to know
Something to believe
Something to offer