Sin enters the world
In the beginning of the Bible, we see Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. Everything is perfect. However, God does tell them not to eat from one tree in the garden. He tells them it is dangerous and would lead to death. There is a snake in the garden that tells them that this is a lie, that it won’t kill them and in fact, it will make them like God. Adam and Eve believe the snake instead of God and eat the fruit. Death and evil enter the world at this time. The Bible does not tell us how this snake got in the garden but does tell us that it is a creature that is in rebellion with God and wants people to rebel also. He wants people to doubt God’s goodness and to be on a path that leads toward death.
Although, the situation looks grim, God give Adam and Eve hope. He promises that someone will come in the future and crush the serpents head and destroy evil. However they are told that during the battle the snake will bite the heel of the deliverer.
Later God singles out Abraham. He promises that through his family, goodness and blessing will be restored to the world. As we follow this family, we get to one of Abraham’s great grandsons, Judah. He receives a promise that a King will come through one of his descendents. The whole world will follow this king and it will bring peace and harmony to the nations.
One of these Kings is David. He is to rule over the nation of Israel but unfortunately he is infected with evil, just like the rest of humanity. And the generations of kings after him also give into the snake and chase after money, power, sex etc. They run the nation of Israel into the ground and they are eventually conquered by Babylon.
Even though things look bad for the nation of Israel, God sends prophets. These prophets keep talking about the coming king and remind them of God’s promise to defeat evil and restore the garden. One of these prophets, Isaiah, tells them why this king is to be sent. He tells them that he will receive a wound because of the evil of humanity. Although this wound will kill him, he will come back. Because he suffered this wound, he can now bring healing to others.
The New Testament introduces us to Jesus who comes to fulfill these specific ancient promises. He is from the line of David, Judah and Abraham. He goes around Israel saying that the goodness of God’s kingdom is here now and he begins to confront evil by healing them and forgiving them. Jesus begins to tell his followers that he was going to bring peace and become king but that he is going to do this by taking the full effect of humanity’s evil onto himself: the fatal snake bite wound. This would be a tragedy except that Jesus rises from the dead. He has power over evil and death. The rest of the New Testament makes the claim that Jesus’ power is now available to us in order that we can confront the evil and sin in our own lives. Even though there is still evil in the world now, the story of the bible ends and describes a day in the future when Jesus will return and finish the job. He will destroy the snake once and for all and will restore the garden her on earth.
- Watch the video together or invite someone to summarize the topic.
- What is your initial reaction to this video? Do you disagree with any of it? What jumped out at you?
- What information in this video was new to you, or what was something that jumped out at you?
- What does this story demonstrate about God? What attributes (characteristics) of God do you see in this story?
- Read 2 Corinthians 11:3. What areas in your life are you most susceptible to being deceived by Satan? How can you protect yourself in these areas?
- In what ways do we tend to ignore God’s commands or rationalize our sinful behavior like Adam and Eve did in the garden of Eden? What are some of the major areas of life where people tend to ignore what God says?
- Although the coming Messiah was predicted throughout the Old Testament and this was God’s perfect plan of salvation, he was not what the people expected. Have there been times in your life where God showed up in unexpected ways? Explain.
- Read John 14:16. Do you believe that this verse is true? Have you accepted God’s plan of salvation?
- Write a personal action step based on this conversation.