8 Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden at the time of the evening breeze, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden. 9 So the Lord God called out to the man and said to him, “Where are you?”
10 And he said, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked, so I hid.” – Genesis 3:8-10
Over the next few weeks we’re going to reflect on the Christmas as the ultimate rescue story in history. However, it is a rescue story that began long before Mary and Joseph arrived in Bethlehem.
What if I told you the Christmas rescue story began in Genesis? God began moving near mankind from the very beginning.
In Genesis, God who by nature is Spirit, reveals Himself in physical form as He relates Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. The Garden was a place of beauty and shalom. Everything was perfect. Purpose and harmony flourished. It was a world that we dream of and write fairy tales about. Unfortunately, it did not last. Everything came crashing down. Serenity gave way to shame. Beauty turned into ashes. Peace was fractured. The enemy had notched a victory, and sin came rushing into creation. Adam and Eve became keenly aware that things had changed. Instead of feeling like friends of God, they felt like enemies. So, they ran and hid.
What’s so extraordinary about the passage above is that God took the initiative in reaching out to sinful humanity. The Perfect One made the first move. Adam and Eve’s sin had brought on feelings of guilt and shame for the first time. Behind some inadequate tree, wearing inadequate coverings, they hear the voice of God calling out to them saying, “Where are you?”
Long ago, a pattern emerges. Humans sin and hide, then God seeks them. The greatest expression of this pattern is Jesus Christ, who “has come to seek and to save the lost.” (Luke 19:10)
God came looking for Adam and Eve so that they might face their sin, and so that He might tell them the first Gospel, “He will strike your head, and you will strike his heel.” (Genesis 3:15) In layman’s terms, [Jesus] will strike [Satan’s] head, and [Satan] will strike [Jesus’s] heel. This is good news for you. Through Jesus, we will defeat sin – because Jesus has sacrificed himself on Earth.
God initiated a rescue protocol for sinners in the person of Jesus Christ. God is pursuing you. He made the first move towards you; will you move toward Him this Advent season?
Reflection: How has God been pursuing you recently? How have you responded to that pursuit?