Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Light and Dark (05/21/09)
By Tim Pickl
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The Lord gently spoke, “Adam?”
Yellow streaks of light reflected off of the River of Life in the dark valley below. The sun grew larger, and its color changed to orange and transitioned to crimson.
Adam didn’t answer.
The Lord gently spoke again, “Adam?”
“What are you thinking about?” The Lord loved asking the question—even though He already knew the answer—because He loved fellowshipping with Adam.
“I see all You have created, and I feel something so deep within me. I cannot describe it—I-I don’t have the words. Do you know what I mean?”
“Yes Adam. I understand perfectly. What are you feeling?”
“It’s like—oh—it’s like the day You created Woman. I felt so fulfilled. I felt Your love. I felt like I needed to thank you…thank you…”
“Full of thanks?”
“That’s it! Here in this light--here now in the cool of the day--I feel full of thanks, thank-full. Thank You Lord for all you have created and for all you have done. Thank You for Woman and all of creation.”
“It is My pleasure to give good gifts to you, Adam.”
“I love You, Lord.”
“Adam, I love you too. Good night.”
“Serpent, why are you talking to me in the middle of the night? It’s so dark out now…I’m trying to sleep.”
“I have a quesssstion for you.”
“Why can’t it wait until the morning light?”
“I have a quesssstion that’ssss been bugging me for monthssss.”
“Okay. I give in. What is it?!?”
“Did God really ssssay, 'You musssst not eat from any tree in the garden'?”
“We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, 'You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.' ”
“You will not surely die,” Serpent said to Woman. “For God knowssss that when you eat of it your eyessss will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil."
That got Woman’s attention. Woman sat up and squinted at Serpent. Serpent was perched on his favorite rock near the fire. He turned and pointed at the tree in the middle of the garden behind him with his tail, bobbing his scaly head and slurred the enticing words, “Looooook! Ssssseeeeee, eat and believe.”
When Woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she got up, took some fruit and ate it.
“Wha—What? I’m trying to sleep.”
“You need to taste this. Serpent said it was okay.”
“Awww…come on… Just try it.”
Adam sat up, rubbing his eyes. “Oh…okay. Why not?” He bit into the fruit, and sticky juice overflowed his bearded chin. “This tastes good, really good… YUCK!” It suddenly tasted bitter, and he immediately whipped it into the fire. It bounced out of the fire and Serpent got out of the way just in time.
Serpent’s true nature was revealed. “Ha-ha-ha! You disobeyed Him!” He quickly slithered away into the forest.
The sun began to ascend and its light broke forth like a judgment on the darkness.
“What have we done, Woman? Look at you. Don’t-look-at-me.”
“Adam…what’s happened to us?”
“I feel so bad… so guilty… so ashamed.”
“I’m so very sorry. What are we going to do?”
“We need to cover ourselves. Hurry, let’s find something. Woman—look--over there by the forest.”
“Yes--the fig leaves should work. Let me quick sew them together.”
“Thank you. We will need to hide from The Lord.” Adam hastily answered as he made his way and hid on the edge of the forest.
Woman shot back, “That’s going to be hard now that it’s day time.”
Woman sewed the fig leaves together and then joined Adam in the forest, where they covered themselves and hid all day.
At sundown, The Lord called out, “Adam! Adam! Where are you?”
Adam answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.”
“Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?”
“But—Woman gave it to me—”
The darkness of sin was then driven out of paradise.
James 1:16-18 (New International Version)
Don't be deceived, my dear brothers. Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created.
Genesis 3 (New International Version)
Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, "Did God really say, 'You must not eat from any tree in the garden'?" The woman said to the serpent, "We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, 'You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.' "
"You will not surely die," the serpent said to the woman. "For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil."
When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some 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. But the LORD God called to the man, "Where are you?"
He answered, "I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid."
And he said, "Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?"
The man said, "The woman you put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it."
Then the LORD God said to the woman, "What is this you have done?"
The woman said, "The serpent deceived me, and I ate."
So the LORD God said to the serpent,
"Because you have done this,
"Cursed are you above all the livestock
and all the wild animals!
You will crawl on your belly
and you will eat dust
all the days of your life.
And I will put enmity
between you and the woman,
and between your offspring and hers;
he will crush your head,
and you will strike his heel."
To the woman he said,
"I will greatly increase your pains in childbearing;
with pain you will give birth to children.
Your desire will be for your husband,
and he will rule over you."
To Adam he said, "Because you listened to your wife and ate from the tree about which I commanded you, 'You must not eat of it,'
"Cursed is the ground because of you;
through painful toil you will eat of it
all the days of your life.
It will produce thorns and thistles for you,
and you will eat the plants of the field.
By the sweat of your brow
you will eat your food
until you return to the ground,
since from it you were taken;
for dust you are
and to dust you will return."
Adam named his wife Eve, because she would become the mother of all the living.
The LORD God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them. And the LORD God said, "The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever." So the LORD God banished him from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he had been taken. After he drove the man out, he placed on the east side of the Garden of Eden cherubim and a flaming sword flashing back and forth to guard the way to the tree of life.
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