Kate Taliaferro contemplates how the story of the Fall highlights God's willingness to be generous even after we disobey Him.
The story of Creation is one we are all familiar with. We have heard it since we were children, even if we weren’t raised Catholic or perhaps even Christian. It’s in children’s books, picture Bibles, coloring books, cartoons and more. We have a fascination with this story. It’s our origin story and a way to understand how things came into being.
The paradise that was created was lost as sin entered the world. We know that story well too. Eve and the fruit and the serpent, the nakedness and shame, the fig leaves and the angel’s fiery sword. There is a detail that we skip over which was recently highlighted for me in a Bible study that continues to cause me to pause in gratitude.
Adam and Eve eat the fruit and realize their nakedness. They don’t know what to do and hide themselves with some leaves and probably vines. This would do for the Garden environment, the only place they had known.
God comes, calling out to them. God already knows what happened, but He still gives them the opportunity to come out of hiding, to be desired after even in the midst of their shame. While His heart is saddened by their decision, consequences must be given.
We have to remember that God made the whole world, not just the Garden of Eden. So He knew what was beyond the threshold and the world Adam and Eve were being sent into. They did not. On top of being thrust into a new place without the benefits of the Garden, one of the consequences of sin was disharmony between man and the earth. Plants were not going to simply grow as they had in the Garden. Adam and Eve would need to toil and labor for everything. Animals too were no longer trustworthy friends but possible threats.
A couple of leaves for clothing was not going to cut it.
What does God do, then, for His children whom He loves and more than anything desires them to be restored to Him?
The Lord God made for the man and his wife garments of skin, with which He clothed them. (Genesis 3:21)
God made Adam and Eve clothes which could stand up to the work and harsher environment they were entering. Not just any clothes though. Genesis specifically says “skins” meaning animal skins. It follows to wonder where the skins came from and it may be tempting to dismiss the thought as commonplace. Animal skins, of course. What’s the point?
Oh, what a point it is. We often think of the death of Abel as the first blood spilled upon the earth. It is a terrible moment and the first time human blood soaks the soil. But the first blood? No. God Himself sheds the first blood to cover the sin of Adam and Eve and to provide for them even as they are separated from Him.
We heard God’s promise to Adam and Eve that all was not lost and the devil would one day fall (see Genesis 3:15) and here is a glimpse of how God would accomplish it. Even as they walked away from the Garden, they carried with them gifts from their God.
Gifts to protect them, to keep them warm and safe, gifts He had sacrificed to give them for their benefit. How incredible is our God! When we walk away, He stays with us. He sacrificed for us even when we did not deserve it:
But God proves His love for us in that while we were still sinners Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8)
I love Bible study. God’s Word is like a never-ending present. Each time you unwrap a layer and wonder and what you found, there is more to discover. This simple line, so often forgotten, points us straight to Jesus and the salvation He won for us through the blood of His Cross.
Copyright 2022 Kate Taliaferro
About the Author
Kate Taliaferro is an Air Force wife and mom of 6. She has a Masters in Religious Education and tries to find God's presence in all parts of her day, be it cooking, cleaning or just the everyday ordinary. She enjoys homeschooling, stitching crafts and finding cheerios between the couch cushions. She blogs at Daily Graces.