Sounds like a soap opera title, doesn’t it? There ARE some commonalities actually – conflict and tension, among them.
God is trying to batter down my walls and door about my need to control…about surrendering to Him. And I’m feeling battered. I woke up this a.m. with so many thoughts running through my head about this – God was trying to show me how so many things – my lack of trust (not only of Him but others), my fear of the unknown, my worry and anxiety, my fear of being betrayed so I keep thoughts to myself (that was kinda hidden in the corners of my mind because good grief, I certainly pour it out in my writing), my dislike of chaos, my attempt to keep a tight rein on everything, etc. - are all tied together with sin – the original sin and my own. This particular sin laid out in lots of my previous posts – especially the last couple of weeks – about the above issues.
This morning God also reminded me of what I read recently in my Bible in Genesis. I had noticed something that I had never seen before. In Genesis 3:16 after Adam & Eve listened to satan and disobeyed God, He said to Eve: “Your desire will be for your husband and he will rule over you.” THEN in Genesis 4:7, God says to Cain when He banishes him for the murder of Abel, “…..and if you do not do well, sin lies at the door. And its desire is for you but you should rule over it.”
Near identical wording. Interesting, is it not? I knew I had to investigate this further.
John Piper makes the parallel connection:
The key comes from recognizing the connection between the last words of this verse (3:16b) and the last words of Genesis 4:7. Here God is warning Cain about his resentment and anger against Abel. God tells him that sin is about to get the upper hand in his life. Notice at the end of the verse 7: “Sin is crouching at the door; its desire is for you, but you must master it (literally: you shall rule over it).”
The parallel here between 3:16 and 4:7 is amazingly close. The words are virtually the same in Hebrew, but you can see this in the English as well. In 3:16 God says to the woman, “Your desire is for your husband, and he shall rule over you.” In 4:7 God says to Cain, “Sin’s desire is for you, and you shall rule over it.”
Now the reason this is important to see is that it shows us more clearly what is meant by “desire.” When 4:7 says that sin is crouching at the door of Cain’s heart (like a lion, Genesis 49:9) and that it’s desire is for him, it means that sin wants to overpower him. It wants to defeat him and subdue him and make him the slave of sin.
Now when we go back to 3:16 we should probably see the same meaning in the sinful desire of woman. When it says, “Your desire shall be for your husband,” it means that when sin has the upper hand in woman she will desire to overpower or subdue or exploit man. And when sin has the upper hand in man he will respond in like manner and with his strength subdue her, or rule over her.
It’s a CONTROL ISSUE!!!! Eve’s sin was that she didn’t submit to God’s command but took control. And it seems to indicate that there would be struggles for control from then on. Self-exaltation, self-sufficiency, and pride always result in the desire to dominate and rule and control. The opposite of submission.
That’s right…..I blame it all on Eve. Well, Adam did, didn’t he? And she blamed it on the serpent….
THEN later I read what D.A. Carson said in his book The God Who Is There – Finding Your Place in God’s Story comparing the two verses: “The tentacles of rebellion against God corrodes all relationships.” Definitely our relationship with God.
My devotional this morning is ANOTHER GC!
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.” Jeremiah 1:5
God “appoints” people before they are born in the sense that He has a plan and purpose for each person. Some believe this divine plan cannot be resisted. Others assume that, although God has a specific purpose for each of us, He also gives each of us the freedom to either accept or reject His purposes. As for Jeremiah, though he tried to back of out of his calling at least once, he found he couldn’t, and finally surrendered his will to God’s. (emphasis mine)
Maybe God battered down Jeremiah’s walls, too.