Our daily reflections follow the M'Cheyne Bible reading plan, designed for those who want to read the whole Bible in one year. Each reflection focuses on one of the chapters from that day's readings. Darllenwch rhain yn Gymraeg.
The Bible's first two chapters paint a picture of God's creation in harmony: people, living creatures and the natural world all fit perfectly together. The creation myths of the time these stories were written described a world born out of violence and hatred. No, says Genesis: 'God looked at what he had done and saw that it was good' (CEV).
Genesis 3 is where things start to go wrong for humanity. It portrays eternal truths about human nature. We're drawn to 'forbidden fruit': there's something darkly attractive about stepping over the boundaries and doing what we know we shouldn't do. When Adam and Eve disobey God, they become ashamed of who they are. They try to avoid responsibility – Adam blames Eve, and Eve blames the serpent. The harmony between them is broken, and so is the harmony of nature: death enters the natural world as God makes clothing for them out of animal skins. Life becomes much harder and much more painful.
The theologian and philosopher Simone Weil once wrote: 'Imaginary evil is romantic and varied; real evil is gloomy, monotonous, barren, boring. Imaginary good is boring; real good is always new, marvelous, intoxicating.'
Adam and Eve weren't abandoned, and the rich tapestry of the Bible is threaded through with grace. But Genesis 3 is a warning: sin has consequences, and when we do wrong we will regret it.