In today’s episode of All God’s Women we look at Eve in the Bible, a woman with a simple command who made a bad choice that led to eternal consequences.
Eve’s Bible Story
The Bible opens with the story of creation. In chapter 1 verse 27 we’re told that God Created man and woman in His image. Chapter 2 gives us a more detailed account of Eve’s creation. Up to this point, everything else was created from nothingness. Eve, however, was created from Adam’s rib. She was beauty personified and absolute perfection in appearance. She was comparable to Adam, and was created to be a companion for him.
God created Adam from the dust of the ground and breathed life into his nostrils. He placed Adam in the Garden of Eden to tend and keep it, but God realized that it was not good for man to be alone. He needed a helpmeet.
God introduced Adam to every living creature, the beasts of the fields and the birds of the air, but no suitable companion was found. So God caused Adam to fall into a deep sleep, and as he slept, God took one of his ribs and created woman. When he brought her to Adam, Adam said, “This is now bone of my bones And flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of Man.” (Genesis 2:23 NKJV)
“God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” (Genesis 1:27) “Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good.” (v. 31)
Though God created Adam first, Eve was no afterthought. God knew from the beginning that it was not good for man to be alone, so he created woman so that man might have someone to do life with. Though they were each made in the image of God, they were not the same. Man and woman were designed to provide for each other and compliment each other’s weaknesses.
God’s commands to Adam and Eve were simple – be fruitful and multiply, fill the earth and subdue it, have dominion over all the other creatures, and don’t eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil.
God planted a garden and filled it with every tree that was “pleasant to the sight and good for food.” (Genesis 2:9 NKJV) In the midst of that garden he included the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
God gave Adam and Eve free reign in the Garden of Eden with just one stipulation. They could eat from any tree except for the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. He warned them that if they ate from that tree, they would die.
We’re not sure how long Eve lived in Eden before the serpent came along. But one day as she went about her business, a serpent engaged her in conversation. Was this a normal occurrence? We have no way of knowing, but a talking snake doesn’t seem to surprise her. His question, though, intrigues her.
“Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?” (Genesis 3:1 ESV)
She lets him know that they can eat from any tree except for the one in the middle. Then, she adds to God’s word, telling him they can’t eat from that tree, nor touch it, or they’ll die.
The serpent assures her they won’t actually die. In fact, he tells her the reason God doesn’t want them to eat from that tree is because then they’ll be as wise as God. He insinuates that God was keeping Adam and Eve from something good. Instead, God was protecting their innocence.
The serpent takes what Eve knows, that aren’t to eat from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, and then questions it. Eve responds by adding to the command. God said not to eat from the tree. She adds that they can’t even touch it. He piques her interest by telling her that God is keeping them from something that’s good for them. She believes the serpent.
The serpent presented Eve with a choice. Trust God’s command or see for yourself if what God said was true. Go have some fruit, he said. It will be good for you, he said.
Eve had a choice to make. It wasn’t a choice she agonized over. It wasn’t anything she gave much thought to. At the time of the choice, it likely didn’t seem like a big deal at all, but the consequences? They weren’t just life changing for her, but for every life after her.
The tree had fruit. It was pleasant to the eyes. Furthermore, eating the fruit could make her wise.
Eve took the word of a stranger over the wisdom of her Creator. She ate the fruit and shared it with Adam, and her world was shattered.
In our studies of the creation story, we tend to focus on the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, but right next to that tree. God had planted the tree of life. It was there for Adam and Eve’s pleasure, but they missed it. After they succumbed to the serpent’s temptation, God evicted Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden, “lest he put out his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever.” (Genesis 3:22 NKJV)
Eve could have just as easily have eaten from the tree of life and lived forever in paradise. Instead, she allowed herself to be seduced by the desire to be wise in her own eyes.
We all seek wisdom. God praised Solomon’s desire to be wise, but we must not lose sight of the truth in our pursuit of knowledge.
In 2 Corinthians 11:3, Paul warned the Corinthian church to not be deceived like Eve, to not be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.
The world will try to charm us with claims that contradict God’s word, but we must remember. The world’s way leads to death. God’s way leads to life everlasting.
Eve Hid From God
What was the first thing Eve did after giving into temptation and eating the forbidden fruit? She shared it with Adam who was there with her.
“Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves coverings.” (Genesis 3:7)
When they heard the footsteps of God walking through the garden in the cool of the day, they hid themselves, not wanting to face his judgment. When God confronted Adam and Eve with their sin, Adam blamed Eve, and Eve blamed the serpent.
The serpent was right when he said that eating the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil would open their eyes so that they could see good and evil. What Eve failed to consider was that knowledge of evil is not a good thing. Once it enters your life, it takes over.
In a perfect world, nakedness was a natural thing. But once evil invaded, it brought on shame and guilt. Adam and Eve tried to hide that guilt by crafting clothing to cover their nakedness, but it was too little too late.
When they heard God approaching, they concealed themselves in order to avoid confrontation. Their sin caused a barrier between man and God that had not been there before.
Finally, instead of confessing their sin, Adam and Eve played the blame game, trying to excuse themselves by placing blame on someone else. It didn’t work.
God Showed Mercy to Adam and Eve
Though Adam and Eve did not die immediately after eating the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, from that day forward, their days were numbered.
God pronounced his judgment on Adam, Eve, and the serpent. He cursed the serpent to a life of crawling on the ground eating dust.
He cursed the ground that Adam would tend. He proclaimed that Adam would fight thorns and thistles and toil all the days of his life until he returned to the ground. “For out of it you were taken; For dust you are, And to dust you shall return.” (Genesis 3:19 NKJV)
God’s proclamation to Eve was a little different. Though he declared that he would multiply her pain in childbirth, he didn’t curse childbearing. He merely made it more difficult. He asserted that she would desire her husband, and he would rule over her.
He also included Eve in his judgment on the serpent.
“I will put enmity Between you and the woman, And between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, And you shall bruise His heel.” (Genesis 3:15 NKJV)
While still in the Garden of Eden, God was already prophesying the birth of the Christ, the Savior of the World. He was referencing that Eve’s seed, Jesus, would come into the world, and though the enemy would put him to death, Jesus would overcome death and conquer sin.
Though Eve sinned and womankind paid the price, God allowed his son to be born of a woman.
Eve Named Mother of All Living
Did Eve know from the beginning that she was to be the mother of all living? How could she even understand the concept? God created Adam from the dust of the ground and Eve from one of Adam’s ribs. They were formed as fully functioning adults.
When God told her he would greatly multiply her sorrow and her conception, and that in pain, she would bring forth children, how could she have possibly comprehended what that would mean? All she knew was that her bearing children was part of God’s plan to conquer sin.
Imagine her confusion during pregnancy, wondering what was happening to her body. Even more so, the astonishment at the birth of her first baby. Though surely she was worn out and overwhelmed by the experience, she gave God the glory, proclaiming that she had acquired a man from the Lord. She delighted again in bearing another son.
Surely, Eve did everything she knew to raise her boys up right, but when Cain found displeasure from God, he took it out on his brother, killing Abel.
What heartache Eve must have felt, knowing that her firstborn son killed her second born, but then her joy when God sent her a third son. She praised God for appointing another seed for her.
Though we don’t know the names of the rest of Eve’s children, we know that she and Adam went on to have many more sons and daughters.
But God is a just God. If He tells us there will be consequences, there will be consequences. Maybe not immediately. Maybe a long time later. The Bible doesn’t tell us when Eve died, but we know she was 130 when she had Seth. We know that she and Adam had many more sons and daughters and that Adam died when he was 930 years old. It took awhile, but Eve died, just as God said she would. Furthermore, so did everyone else born after her.
What Can We Learn From Eve’s Story?
Eve made a bad choice and it forever changed the trajectory of human life.
Perhaps you, too, have made poor decisions. Maybe you’re at the point where you wish you could die because you don’t see a way out of the mess you’ve made of your life.
If so, I’ve got good news for you.
Eve was kicked out of Eden. She had two sons, and one of them killed the other one. Life was spiraling downward for Eve. But God had not forgotten her and he’d not given up on her.
God gave her another son and she named him Seth. She said, “God has appointed me another offspring instead of Abel, for Cain killed him.” With Seth, she received renewed hope. Seth grew up and he had a son. And in Genesis 4:26 we’re told, “At that time people began to call upon the name of the Lord.”
Eve may have had a 130 year old pity party. We don’t know. But we do know that God still loved Eve and he gave her another son. And she praised God for that son and she taught him about God. And she was able to witness a revival of people turning to God.
Despite the sorrow that Eve faced as a result of her sin, she didn’t grow bitter. When she bore her first child, she was thankful to have “acquired a man from the Lord.” When her one son killed her other son, she bravely continued on with life. When Seth was born, she proclaimed, “For God has appointed another seed for me instead of Abel, whom Cain killed.”
Eve could have given up on life. She certainly had plenty of reason to feel that life was hopeless. Instead, she pushed forward, focusing on her blessings instead of her fears.
What about you? Have you made life altering destructive decisions? Are you living in fear because of sin that is standing between you and God? It’s easy to give into those fears, calling them holy fears. But that’s not God’s intention. Yes, He wants us to address our sin. But once we admit them and bring them to Him, He wants us to move on and focus not on our failures but on His grace.
Choices have consequences. But whatever choices you’ve made, there’s still hope. We serve a merciful God who loves you and wants you to be fruitful again. All you have to do is to choose God. Reject your past. Live for the future.
Lord God, we come to you humbled by the many times we’ve fallen short, times we chose the world over your wisdom. We know that you’re a merciful God so we come to you begging for your mercy. Forgive us from our sins. Thank you for sending your son to die on the cross for our sins. Give us new life. In Christ name we pray. Amen.
Eve’s Bible Study
We begin our study of Bible women with Eve, a woman who made a simple choice that forever changed the trajectory of human life.
Eve’s life is covered in the first four chapters of the Bible. Here’s a breakdown of the highlights.
Genesis 1:28 – created
Genesis 2: 15-17 – commanded
Genesis 2:18 – comparable
Genesis 2:21-23 – companion
Genesis 3:1-6 – choice
Genesis 3:8 – concealment
Genesis 3:13 – confession
Genesis 3:16 – curse
Genesis 3:22-24 – consequences
Bible Study Review
- What was life like in Eden?
- How did the serpent tempt Eve?
- What did Eve do after eating the fruit?
Thoughts to Ponder
- Why would Eve listen to the serpent?
- Why did she avoid God?
- What was the consequence of her action?
- Are you ever tempted to listen to the world rather than God?
- What do you do when you mess up?
- Have you experienced God’s mercy and grace after you’ve messed up?
Join with other women in the
All God’s Women Bible Study Facebook group