Genesis 3:8-15 is the Hebrew Bible Lesson properly appointed for Proper 5B, Track 2 according to the Revised Common Lectionary.
The story of the Garden in Genesis is the story of brokenness. And, as such, it’s a story that we know all too well. We know it in our bones.
In the beginning, after God had drawn us out of the clay and filled us with His breath, God was right there with us. He walked with us in the Garden. He talked with us in the Garden. He told us where to find food. He made sure we had companions.
Did you catch the fact that as the evening breeze moved through the Garden that we heard the Presence of God moving among the trees? Wow. What must THAT have heard like?!
It was good. It was very good.
And then we broke it.
Yes, we ate of the tree. And, that was bad enough. But, it was not the end.
We felt our nakedness, and because of that we were afraid when God came around.
We were never afraid before. That was new. And that was bad.
And then, we tried to push off the responsibility. “The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me fruit from the tree, and I ate.” (emphasis mine)
I didn’t give myself this woman. You gave her to me. What were you thinking? If she hadn’t been around trying to trick me…
We couldn’t even own up to our mistake. We couldn’t just stand there naked and reveal the naked truth that we had screwed up.
Who knows? Perhaps if we had the fortitude to confess our wrongdoing, and ask for forgiveness, things might not have been as broken. Or at least the broken thing could be addressed, and the painful process of repairing the brokenness could have begun either in Eden or East of it.
But, no, what began was fear and finger pointing.
Here’s the thing: We all stand naked before God. God knows who we are and what we do. We might fool everyone around us. We might even fool ourselves. But, we will never fool God.
But, we need not stand there in fear. And we shouldn’t do anything but realize our own fault when it is in fact our fault.
Only then can the brokenness be repaired.