“And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” Genesis 2:16-17 NKJV
“So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate. Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves coverings.” Genesis 3:6-7 NKJV
Many of us know the story of Adam and Eve. We know God’s warning to them, their disobedience and the consequence of their action. Yet, many miss God’s compassion towards them. Genesis 3:21 says that God made clothes for them. I don’t believe it was just to cover up their shame, but also to protect them from the sun and harsh conditions they may face outside of Eden. They were still His children.
I wonder if Eve ever asked God the question that I have found myself asking God at times concerning tragic things in life. “God, why did you let this happen?” The truth is, God gave the warning. We disobeyed and we let “this” happen!
Did God ever give you a warning but you thought doing it your way was better and you found out real quick that you should have listened to God? Our Heavenly Father is a good Father and because He knows our future and has already gone ahead of us, He will usually bring a warning to a specific area in our life to keep us from making a tragic mistake. The thing about this warning is, it’s up to us to take heed to it because God is not going to force us to comply or obey.
While God is a God who is in control, He is not a controlling God. He does not manipulate or force people to do the right thing. He is not The Puppet Master! He is a loving Father who has given us free will. He gives the loving warning and then it’s up to us what we choose to do with it.
What I love about this same Father God who brings warning and correction is the same Father God who gives forgiveness, love and acceptance through a heart of repentance. The Father corrects those He loves. Hebrew 12:6 says, “because the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and he chastens everyone he accepts as his son.”
While there are consequences for disobedience, there is also healing, comfort and renewal that follows when we turn from our ways to His. “Comfort, yes, comfort My people!” Says your God. “Speak comfort to Jerusalem, and cry out to her, That her warfare is ended, That her iniquity is pardoned; For she has received from the LORD’s hand Double for all her sins,” Isaiah 40:1-2 NKJV. This is the loving kind of Father that I have come to know….the Father who disciplines those He loves, yet comforts them and loves them to life!
While God does allow room for mistakes and even failures, let’s not have to take the long, hard road. Let’s stay on the Highway of Holiness through obedience. “And a great road will go through that once deserted land. It will be named the Highway of Holiness. Evil-minded people will never travel on it. It will be only for those who walk in God’s ways; fools will never walk there”, Isaiah 35:8.
Let’s take heed and obey what our loving Heavenly Father tells us because He knows what’s best for us. Isaiah 55:8-9 says, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank you that according to Psalm 51:17, the sacrifices of God are a broken and contrite (remorseful) spirit. Lord forgive me when I have disobeyed Your voice. I come to you in sincerity and I repentant (to turn from, change one’s mind), from my own ways of doing things. Lord, lead me in all Your ways. Thank you for Your love and acceptance and the renewal of the days and paths ahead of me. In Jesus Name I pray, amen!