14 April 2013

Adam And Eve: The Naked Truth

All our lives we've been told that we're sinners. We've been taught that we're imperfect and there has never been any hope for any of us without Jesus. Pastors and Priests have been preaching this for millennium. They preach that we deserve the fiery pit of hell for our sins; that we're not good enough and we need to do something or believe a certain way in order to be right with God.
Adam and Eve hiding in the garden. Not so much.

Ultimately, God is not happy with his people. He does not like disobedience and humans are always breaking the King's rules. Even the Bible clearly states how ruthless God is when he flooded the world or kicked Adam and Eve out of the garden because of their sin. He's never really been that impressed with us, except for his Son and maybe a handful of people in the Bible. It's clear that we have failed God and we so desperately need his love and forgiveness.

Enter Jesus.

Jesus finally gave us a way that we can be made right. If it wasn't for his sacrifice, God would have destroyed the Earth by now. Thank you Jesus for dying for us! Thank you for providing a way to escape the flames and creating a path that people can be saved (Mat 7:14).

And, quite frankly, if you believe anything I just said, then you believe a lie.

We all know Christianity teaches this. We all have heard these familiar Words. And, if you don't believe me, then you're in denial. Even the Bible speaks of God's wrath and damnation for those who don't believe (John 14:6). However, almost every single translator of the Bible had this similar doom and gloom perspective. They were bent on translating what they believed God to be saying in the Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic. They were taught the same messages we were. But, how many of these people do you think actually asked God what he thought about their translation? How many ministers do you know literally talk to God and listen to what he has to say about the image they portray? What about the apostles and the prophets? Did they know everything? Did they understand the vastness of God when they wrote these books and letters?

We've been force-fed so much religion and condemnation that we don't even see ourselves in the Light (1 John 1:5-7). We don't see ourselves from God's perspective (1 Pet 2:9-10). When people like me tell you that you're forgiven or that there's nothing left to do, it's such an extreme and foreign concept that people immediately reject it. Darkness and fear is ingrained in Christianity. It's steered the way we think and our way of life.

But, what if there's another, even clearer picture?

What I'm about to tell you is something that I've never heard anyone say. Not once have I observed it taught in any Christian circles (and I've been in church my whole life). I've studied the Word countless times and completely missed it myself. I missed it because of my Christian upbringing. However, God's opened my eyes and I'd like to share some of my new found wisdom (Acts 9:18).

Once I started seeing things with my Father's eyes, I began reading the Bible again from a whole new perspective. Everywhere I turned was life and something new and completely different from what I'd known before (2 Cor 5:17-19). It's like the Bible literally started to breathe (Heb 4:12-13). I set out to start over. So, I began reading in the most obvious place - Genesis. However, as I've said in previous posts, I couldn't get passed the first 3 chapters.

What I'm about to share with you is my favorite new discovery.

After Adam and Eve bit into the fruit from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, what was the very first thing that happened? Well, they became aware of their nakedness (Gen 3:7). They obtained a self-awareness they never had before. Their eyes were opened to a new and different way of seeing things.

Contrary to popular belief, the tree they ate from wasn't a bad tree. Neither did it bear bad fruit (Gen 1:11-13). In fact, nothing God creates is bad (Gen 1:31).

However, there was one time it was not good. It wasn't good for Adam to be alone. Don't misunderstand me. God didn't say it was evil. He simply said, "it is not good...," then he proceeded to fix the problem (Gen 2:18-23).

After Adam and Eve discovered they were naked, their first reaction was to sew fig leaves together to cover their bodies (Gen 3:7). This wasn't some random action. It wasn't done on accident. They devised a plan. They knew God would come looking for them soon and they needed to cover up.

Sure enough, God comes looking for his two favorite people (his masterpiece of all creation). Yet, they have covered themselves in fig leaves and hidden in the trees (Gen 3:8). To be honest, all the times I read this before I always thought they hid behind tree trunks. That's what I did when I played hide and seek as a kid, but I was wrong about this too.

God said, "No Dathan. They hid in the trees." Then it hit me! They climbed in the trees. They covered themselves in leaves and were surrounded by leaves of the trees. They literally made the very first camouflage known to man. And, it worked well too.

God couldn't find them. He searched, then called out to Adam "Where are you?" (Gen 3:9). Finally, Adam revealed himself and replied that he heard him coming and was afraid. He was afraid because he was naked (Gen 3:10).

Now, this is what I want you to understand. The very next Words God says to Adam is mind-blowing. It's so easy to overlook. Here, let me make it obvious:

He said, "Who told you that you were naked?..." (Gen 3:11)

What is going on here? God never mentioned they were naked?? How could this be? Wasn't being "naked" bad?

They were clearly sinning and doing something unrighteous. If it's a sin and wrong to be naked, why wouldn't God tell Adam and Eve to cover themselves before? Why didn't he command them to fix what they were doing wrong?

Before they ate the fruit, God clearly never said anything about it. They were walking around with God sharing ideas, naming animals, and doing whatever else they did, but God never told Adam and Eve anything about their nakedness. Frankly, God didn't care.

The very first words out of his mouth are, "Who told you that you were naked?" The second part of the verse lets us know what God was thinking: "Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?" (Gen 3:11). He already knew the answer to the question. He knew because of how Adam was acting and the way he replied.

Before all this, everyone was living in paradise and having a grand ole time. Everything was perfect and good, and God didn't say there was anything wrong. Nor did he see anything wrong with them. There was nothing out of place. The only time there was an issue, was when Adam was alone. But, God already fixed that. They were living the easiest life possible in complete ignorance and bliss.

God did not create Adam to have the knowledge of good and evil - right and wrong - good and bad. God just saw that they were good. All of his creation was good (Gen 1:31). His son and daughter were perfect in his sight (Job 1:20-21).

You see, God had the knowledge of good and evil already (Gen 3:22). He saw Adam and Eve naked before they ate the fruit, but he still never said anything.
God never saw you naked.

This new wisdom that Adam and Eve gained made them believe that they were not right. Their new awareness had them believing there was something wrong with them, but it simply wasn't true.

Look, I want to tell you something that goes against everything you've been taught. There is nothing wrong with you. You are not a sinner, you are not evil, and you are not bad. You are good. All of you. You are righteous (Col 2:13-15). You are perfect in God's sight (Eph 1:3-10). He's been trying to tell you this forever, but no one wants to listen. He sent his Son to prove this to you too, but no one wanted to hear him either.

However, when God looks at you, he sees nothing wrong. When he sees you, he does not see evil or sin. He sees glorious. He sees himself (Gen 1:26-27).

You've been naked the whole time. You've been sinning and living an unrighteous life, but God doesn't care about this. He doesn't see your imperfections. He doesn't see your sin or flaws (Psa 139:13-16). In his eyes you are good and have always been good (Col 1:13-23). He proved it to you! And, there's nothing anyone can do or say to change that (Rom 8:37-39).

Who told you that you were naked?

It wasn't God.

It must have been someone else.


Anonymous said...

I dont understand. You use a verse to back up a paragraph that begins with , 'Jesus finally gave us a way that we could be made right', and then you end it with a sentence that begins 'quite frankly'. So I'm confused. You're contradicting yourself, arent you? I mean you agreed with me that the Bible is the inspired word and you backed up what you say by the scripture you posted and in the very next sentence you say what you said. How can you post that scripture and then say that last statement? By the way you never answered my questions from your last post. You may hear chirping (silence) from Pastors (even though that doesnt necessarily mean that you won,)but I'm not going away though.

Dathan Ellis said...

I'm actually not contradicting myself there. What does Mat 7:14 mean to you?

Anonymous said...

To me it means that not everyone finds Salvation.

Anonymous said...

If the righteous scarcely be saved,where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear.

Dathan Ellis said...

Jesus was not talking about Salvation. Jesus just spoke about not judging others and about giving good gifts earlier in the chapter. Then, he mentioned the golden rule in v12 just before talking about the gates (v13-14). Based on the context, what was Jesus talking about here?

Anonymous said...

I see why you are interpreting it the way you are, but reading it, it seems to me that verse 13 is the beginning of a different thought and therefore not in context with verses 12 and above, but the beginning of the context of the verses that follow verse 13. In other words, verses 12 and 13 seem to be the end of (vs 12) and the beginning of (vs 13) two different thoughts, with the teaching on Salvation beginning with vs 13. Remember, the Bible wasnt always divided up the way we divide it up now into chapters and such.

Dathan Ellis said...

Then, it relates more to 15-27? The whole sermon of the mount had a common theme (Mat 5-7). These verses fit perfectly with it.

Anonymous said...

yes it fits with vs 13-27. I mean you're right too in that all the whole word fits together. However, you're getting me off track. In reference to the paragraph I cited.It sounded like you were trying to say listen to this , and then at the same time dont. I didnt understand that.

Dathan Ellis said...

Ok, according to 13-27 who are the ones going through the wide gate and who is going through the narrow gate? You asked me why I chose that verse so I'm trying to explain.

Anonymous said...

I didnt actually ask you originally why you chose that verse. My orignal question was bascally, Why would you say all of what you said, back it up with that scripture, especially when you agreed with me that scripture is the word of God, and then say something like, not to believe that. Anyway, The people are who entering the narrow gate are the ones being saved and the ones entering the wide gate are the ones going after there 'own thing' if you will, and not trusting in Jesus and therefore not being saved. Now that we have a civil discourse, why did you blast me with the 'woman next to me' comment? What was that about?

Dathan Ellis said...

I was trying to show how others take this verse out of context. You have taken it to believe that Jesus was talking about salvation. But, Jesus was referring to the Pharisees. They were following destruction and there were many of them. Very few believers were following the path to life.

Pippy said...

I love the wisdom in this post! Fantastic!

What struck me as I was reading it was the correlation to 'nakedness' and 'dying to ourselves'.

There was a time when we were lay bare before God, naked in our fellowship and hiding nothing. We had no care about life's troubles, ambitions.

Then, BAM! We do something we know to be wrong and instead of continuing in our bareness, we heap on things to clothe ourselves with, whether it be scriptures or law - and we deny ourselves a purely intimate relationship. And, we've been covered ever since.

Oh, how I pray the world could strip off the camouflage and step out into newness!

Great post, Dathan. :)

Anonymous said...

I dont know one person that would agree with you, except for maybe the 6 or 7 people that I've seen follow your blog on a regular basis, but ok. Still havent answered my other questions though.

Michael Camp said...

Actually, a lot of scholars agree with that interpretation of the wide and narrow gate, not the least of which is N.T. Wright. The context of judgment statements in Jesus' words is the coming destruction of the Temple and Jerusalem, similar to OT prophets. The last days, new age, coming of the the Son of Man, return of Christ, were explained in terms of a judgment coming on that generation, so the wide and narrow gate passage fits this. It's not a heaven vs hell paradigm in the afterlife, but a life vs. judgment paradigm in the here and now.

Gaines Harrell, MBA said...

Dathan, what you are saying makes a lot of sense. Religion has been bastardized to suit mans' needs, not God's will or wishes. When someone tells you that you are a sinner and are going to Hell for your sins if you do not repent, they are actually committing the sin of Judgement, which is left solely to God. When someone looks down upon you for your lifestyle, actions, personality, etc... in the name of religion, they are committing the same sin of Judgement that is reserved solely for God. Mankind has utilized religion to start wars, to persecute, and to bend mans' thoughts away from a free-thinking mode to a mode of being frightful of each of their actions. Are all religions like this? Not at all. But there are those who will utilize this fear to consolidate power over people, and that is where religion got off track. Religion is supposed to be about worshiping God, not dictating your life or directing anyone to dictate the lives of others. Over time, Christianity, Islam, Judaism, and other religious factions have sought power and control rather than instructing people on how to properly worship. If you think that I am incorrect in my assessment, take a trip to the Cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris, or the Vatican and tell me why the Catholic Church needs all of the treasures it has rather than selling them and utilizing the money from the sale of the treasures to actually help those in need. The Catholic Church, in my opinion, is much more interested in your money than it is in your soul. I have seen this in practice in many churches, Catholic and Protestant, where the church leaders would talk to you more about tithing than salvation. As far as I am concerned, my relationship with God is my business and my business alone, and I will never step into a holy site to worship again. The next time I am in a church, someone is getting married or buried. I am tolerant and respectful of others' religious beliefs, and all I ask is the same in return. When I tell people that I am not a Christian, but I do believe in God, most will question how that can be. I simply point to them the fact that all major religions believe in God, and that Christianity has no monopoly on God. I also will pose this simple query for all to ponder. All religions believe that God is all-knowing, all-seeing, and all-being. If God is all-being, that means that God is everywhere. If God is everywhere, then God is part of everything. If God is part of everything, then everything is part of God. I am part of everything, and therefor, God is part of me, and I am part of God. If I am part of God, why do I need religion to get to God when God is already part of me? Just some philosophy to ponder, and an excellently written article on your part.

Dathan Ellis said...

I agree Gaines. God is everywhere and in everything. I've said this before: If anyone can find God in Christianity, then they can find him in any faith. Just keep seeking. After all, he's the only one out there.

Anonymous said...

Dathan, you're contradicting yourself again. You espouse a personal relationship with Jesus. Ok, I'm with you. Then, you say he can be found in any faith. How can that be. Other religions dont follow the same God. Allah did not come back from the dead. Buddha did not come back from the dead. Jesus did!

Anonymous said...

Michael Camp...to your points, fair enough. I see where you're coming from. However, I could also cite folks who have the same, just as convincing, points of view that I do.

Anonymous said...

Gaines, I get your disillusionment with religion. However, Christianity,isn't a religion. It's a relationship. It can't be found in other faiths. He's the creator of everything. Dont get me wrong. I get that there's alot wrong and folks throw terms around willy nilly, and people take advantage of others in the name of religion. I just think we should be careful that, in an attempt to get away from that, that we don't veer really far away.