Faithlife
Faithlife

Where Are You?

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Genesis 3:9–11 NLT
Then the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?” He replied, “I heard you walking in the garden, so I hid. I was afraid because I was naked.” “Who told you that you were naked?” the Lord God asked. “Have you eaten from the tree whose fruit I commanded you not to eat?”
God’s question, “Where are you?” (v. 9), can carry several shades of meaning. It is certainly not a request for information; God knows where you are, and you know that you cannot really hide from God. He answers immediately, and he answers the question that is really being asked: “Why are you hiding?” He admits his fear of his Creator. Why fear? Because he expects the death penalty to be inflicted? He does not say that; he is afraid because he is naked, defenseless, and feeling the need for defense. God has not changed, but the human has, and from his position of independence God now looks different, threatening. The question, “Where are you?” is heard as an accusation. But from God’s side the question may have another overtone, and that is grief. For “Where are you?” can be a grieving question. If the story is to have its proper effect on us, we ought to see ourselves there among the trees. That is, we ought to recognize our own pitiful defenses thrown up to attempt to justify ourselves against a God of whom we are not quite sure, and then perhaps also be presented with a revelation. On the other side, the relationship has not been broken off completely, for it is maintained by a sorrowing God.
Sin affects every level of human existence, including the sinner’s relationship with God, with other human beings and with the environment.
Gowan, D. E. (1988). From Eden to Babel: a commentary on the book of (p. 56). Grand Rapids, MI: W.B. Eerdmans Pub. Co.
The effects of sin on individuals
Lack of peace of mind
Isaiah 57:20–21 NLT
“But those who still reject me are like the restless sea, which is never still but continually churns up mud and dirt. There is no peace for the wicked,” says my God.
Psalm 38:5–8 NLT
My wounds fester and stink because of my foolish sins. I am bent over and racked with pain. All day long I walk around filled with grief. A raging fever burns within me, and my health is broken. I am exhausted and completely crushed. My groans come from an anguished heart.
Bondage to a continuing habit of sin
Proverbs 5:22 NLT
An evil man is held captive by his own sins; they are ropes that catch and hold him.
Proverbs 5:22 NLT
An evil man is held captive by his own sins; they are ropes that catch and hold him.
Romans 6:16 NLT
Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living.
2 Timothy 2:16 NLT
Avoid worthless, foolish talk that only leads to more godless behavior.
Physical death
Romans 5:12–14 NLT
When Adam sinned, sin entered the world. Adam’s sin brought death, so death spread to everyone, for everyone sinned. Yes, people sinned even before the law was given. But it was not counted as sin because there was not yet any law to break. Still, everyone died—from the time of Adam to the time of Moses—even those who did not disobey an explicit commandment of God, as Adam did. Now Adam is a symbol, a representation of Christ, who was yet to come.
Romans 6:21–23 NLT
And what was the result? You are now ashamed of the things you used to do, things that end in eternal doom. But now you are free from the power of sin and have become slaves of God. Now you do those things that lead to holiness and result in eternal life. For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.
Separation from God
Isaiah 59:2 NLT
It’s your sins that have cut you off from God. Because of your sins, he has turned away and will not listen anymore.
Ephesians 2:12 NLT
In those days you were living apart from Christ. You were excluded from citizenship among the people of Israel, and you did not know the covenant promises God had made to them. You lived in this world without God and without hope.
God’s second question, “Who told you that you were naked?” (v. 11), is also not a request for information. There was only one possible way to produce the man’s present condition, and that was not by anyone telling him anything. It could only have happened as a result of violating the one limit that God had placed on human freedom. So God does not wait for an impossible answer but moves directly to the point. The conversation is getting more forceful now, for in Hebrew “Did you eat?” comes at the very end of the sentence, for emphasis. In the man’s answer we learn (or are reminded) that the effort to become independent produces not only insecurity but also an inability to bear responsibility for its negative results
In Conclusion:
Where Are You?
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