Adam and Eve in the Hands of an Angry God: A Fresh Look at Genesis 3:8

The first human sin is immediately followed by God’s juridicial inquest. When Yahweh-Elohim begins his inquest in 3:8, the humans respond immediately with fear and attempt to hide among the trees of the Garden. The divine inquest is clearly theophanic, though recent interpreters question the traditional rendering of the text that portrays Yahweh on a peaceful routine stroll through the Garden “in the cool of the day.” The wording in the Hebrew suggests the possibility of a different reading – one more awe-inspiring and dreadful. Continue reading

Grasping for Godhood: The First Human Sin

God gave the man and woman access to all the trees of the Garden for food (Gen 2:9, 16) but forbade access to the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil (Gen 2:17). The Serpent has cast God’s prohibition in a negative light. God is hiding the truth from the humans and doesn’t have their best interests in view (Gen 3:4-5). In response to the Serpent’s slanderous insinuation of God’s malevolent intentions toward the humans and his deceitful claim about the benefits of disobedience, the woman now focuses her attention on the tree. Continue reading

All Fun and No Funerals Makes Jack a Dumb Boy

Death is an occasion and funeral homes are a place marked by much sadness and grief. And yet, according to Holy Scripture, there is something potentially beneficial about such an occasion and such a place. As the writer of Ecclesiastes puts it, “It is better to go to a house of mourning than to a house of feasting” (7:2 NIV). To paraphrase, “Better to spend your time at funerals than at parties” (NLT). Why would the Bible make such an assertion? What is this passage teaching us? Continue reading