God's Admonishment of Adam, Eve, and Serpent

Gen. 3:16-20:
16 To the woman He said, “I will greatly multiply Your pain in childbirth, In pain you will bring forth children; Yet your desire will be for your husband, And he will rule over you.”
17 Then to Adam He said, “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree about which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat from it’; Cursed is the ground because of you; In toil you will eat of it All the days of your life.
18 “Both thorns and thistles it shall grow for you; And you will eat the plants of the field;
19 By the sweat of your face You will eat bread, Till you return to the ground, Because from it you were taken; For you are dust, And to dust you shall return.
20 Now the man called his wife’s name £Eve, because she was the mother of all the living."


This verse causes a lot of controversy. God looks at the situation and turns to the woman first (after the serpent) and looks at the womanly functions that God had given to women. Then He looks at the relationship between the husband and wife.

Now God turns to the woman. He has cursed the serpent representing Satan and has decided that sometime He will have to have some other way of turning people to Him. We know this way as Jesus, the Way, the Truth, and the Life (John 14:6). Originally, birth was to be a joyful, fruitful thing to a woman. However, because of her being weak enough to be deceived, she and all descendants will suffer greatly during child birth. The "desire" for the husband has nothing to do with sexual desires. It has to do with any major things that she wishes to do. Because she had acted independently or took the lead of her husband, the woman must now "go through" or exercise her desires through her husband. The husband was to be the head of the household. However, he was to love and cherish his wife, realizing she is "one flesh" with himself and he must "cling to his wife".

Now what does this mean to us today. Remember, we are looking at this Biblically. It appears God gave the headship of the house to the man. Headship by no means is referring to slave master. Today there are a lot of men who could not take leadership of any kind. On the same token, there are a lot of women who could be good leaders. Does God mean we have to have ignorant, incompetent leaders of men? No! Does He mean that women should be treated as property? No! Does it mean that a woman should live under the injustices and cruelties associated with male -dominated governments and customs? No! However, they should avoid anti-Biblical extremes.

Again paraphrasing: First, God "cursed" the woman by greatly multiplying pain in childbirth. However, even with the pain, that would not stop the procreation of life as God said in being fruitful. Second, because she took the lead of the man and in her weakness sinned and got Adam to sin also, she would have to funnel major desires through her husband. The third thing is the man would be the head of the household.

Then, God turns to the man Adam. The full brunt and weight of the curse fell squarely on Adam's shoulders. That is because he did not take the leadership of the house and because he succumbed to his wife's desire, he will be cursed also. Remember, Adam could have said no. Listening to the wife is not a sin. Listening to the wife and sinning, even with the knowledge of is what is unacceptable to God. The ground is cursed because we were looking at a gardener; however, he had sinned which made him a farmer. The ground was not always hard; but, now there is a set of rules.

You, the farmer shall find it very difficult to makes ends mean. The thorns and heavy bushes were to be there on the "farm". By your sweat, you will be able to eat. Until your death ("Till you return to the ground"). Because God made the man and woman on earth and from earth itself, back to earth you will go at death.

Now Adam names his wife. Adam called the woman Eve (Hebrew: chavvah) This means the "first woman".



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