Sunday, November 28, 2010

First Blood

Back to the Garden. The first couple fell- and hid. Isn't that what happens on every single cop TV drama? The detective announces who he is and off we go for the obligatory chase scene. It was no different with our foreparents. As soon as they had tasted of the forbidden fruit, they realized their nakedness and sensed that God was after them:
"She also gave to her husband, who was with her and he ate it. Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves. Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden.
Now there is much too much in here theologically so to keep it short so I am going stay with  the advent of the fashion industry. "The fall of man and fashion. " I hope to highlight in my short lessons how exquisite and exact the Hebrew scriptures are as they speak to the human condition- so that one may learn to realize that there really is the divine hand behind them." Gen. 3

Now we may infer that with the introduction of  sin into the human world that the innocence of the man and the woman was gone for they knew they were naked. I don't want to get sidetracked but feel compelled to comment on how powerfully this rings true in all of our experiences. That no matter how hard we try, and no matter how many voices teach us how natural the naked state is that we know full well, deep down, that something is amiss when it comes to reclaiming this part of our lost innocence.

The clothing. No doubt Eve picked out wonderful and complimentary fig leave colors and sewed them impeccably for their first outfits.The significance here is that God did not approve:

"The Lord God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them." Gen. 3:21 

What I am about to explore now is conjecture, but one I believe makes sense in light of all of Scripture.

I believe it is fair to speculate that the animal that gave his life for their clothing may have been the first blood spilled since the Garden was formed. We know that the Lord God promised that Adam that he would die if he ate of the forbidden fruit. Here, perhaps, is the first death- a sacrifice if you will of an innocent animal to hide the effects of sin of Adam and Eve. Since the first sin we have been hiding from our sin(s), denying our sins with  multitudes having shed their blood in wars caused by the fruit of sin. Adam and Eve thought they could get away with fig leaves. There is no death involved in fig leaves! That was the first couples way of "sweeping their sins under the rug" Does it not remind you of the devastation that afflicts an entire family and town when an addict begins with his denials and the family follows suit and enables?

So God slays  an animal. The first blood is spilled. This is the first family lesson that heavy payment will be due to make this thing aright. In a very real sense that animal atoned for their sin. I believe it foretells the righteous covering that Christ provides his children with which costs the very Son of God his own blood. And what is the story of every single religion outside Christianity? TO TAKE FIG LEAVES AND TO COVER YOURSELF. To bring your rags to God one day and say, "Aren't these prettier than the bloody ones"? That is the devils lie- that you can become shameless by the use of your own craftiness and works. Christianity says that blood must be poured for "Without the spilling of blood there is no remission of sins" Heb 9:22. For the Jew the lifeforce is in the blood- it is precious. Think of Jesus' emphasizing his spilled blood of the new testament...

"But now, a righteousness from God, apart from the law, has been made known, to which the Law and Prophets testify (remember Genesis is part of "the Law", RDG) . This righteousness from God through faith comes in Christ Jesus to all who believe. There is no difference, for all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. God presented him as a sacrificice of atonement, through faith in his blood. Rom. 3
Don't rely on what you are wearing, what you are doing. Come properly dressed before God.

Readings: Hebrews 9


  1. G and I have been studying Hebrews 9 in our small group over the past few months, so this was super interesting to read! Considering your last sentence-- the truly amazing thing is we come dressed in shame, and leave dressed in righteousness. You're right that the cost of that transaction is blood.

  2. also... i've been reading revelations lately and i read this last night from revelation 19.

    11 I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and wages war. 12 His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name written on him that no one knows but he himself. 13 He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is the Word of God. 14 The armies of heaven were following him, riding on white horses and dressed in fine linen, white and clean. 15 Coming out of his mouth is a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations. “He will rule them with an iron scepter.”[a] He treads the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God Almighty. 16 On his robe and on his thigh he has this name written:

    i was marveling at the idea that the robe worn by teh rider was dipped in blood but i realized, "he treads the winepress of hte fury of the wrath of God" and it sorta highlights what you did here too, regarding the need for blood to be shed.

  3. Good catch Jo- I was going to wrap it up that way but as usual got too long winded. Being clothed by God in the beginning and at the end - with the end being the climax of the Revelation where the perfect one dies to clothe the elect. Very powerful bookends. It's funny, when children reach that early independence age and insist on picking out their own clothes and dressing themselves to the point of kicking and screaming- it is a shame that is true for many adults that need God's clothing.