Some days, when I sit down to journal, I'm full of thoughts and realizations. Other days, I'm full of questions.
Reading Genesis 2-3 was a questions day, and maybe you can relate? This is such a seemingly simple passage of scripture, and one I've read thousands of times, but when I stop and look at it, there are still a lot of tiny questions. Some of these, I'm often sure I know the answer to, only to see things from a different angle the next time I read, and question my own assumptions. And I'm not sure that any of these truly matter, in the bigger picture, but today I'm embracing my curiosity and recording these questions, so that maybe in the pondering, I'll come to a deepened understanding of the nature of God and His creation... and at the very least, it keeps my heart and mind centered on Him and His word and seeking His knowledge and wisdom, and keeps my spirit in a place of humility.
So, today, I'm just going to share the questions (not the answers I think I have to them), and I invite you to ponder them with me. If you want to, you can share your answers (and the explanation/evidence for it) in the comments, if you believe you have a clear answer to one of these... but I think there's value in the pondering, nevertheless.
Was the serpent just a serpent, or was it Satan? I've always assumed (was taught?) that the serpent was Satan, but here in Genesis, it doesn't actually say that. (Does it say this elsewhere in scripture?) It says “the serpent was more cunning than all the other beasts of the field”... so… was he just a beast? Or… were ALL the beasts in the garden of Eden cunning/more than what animals are today?
The curse to put enmity between the serpent and the woman and her offspring… Was there not enmity before? Was this the START of the active feud between Satan and humanity? (And, again, is this Satan or just a serpent, or Satan inhabiting a serpent, or something else?). Is Adam not included in this “enmity”? Only Eve and her offspring? Was Eve not going to HAVE offspring before this, but this set the plan in motion where she would need to?
Why was the tree placed in the garden in the first place, if they couldn’t eat of it? And was the actual fruit what gave them the knowledge of good and evil, or was it their act of willful disobedience/loss of innocence?
“Her desire shall be for her husband”... what does this mean?
Is the angel still there, guarding the way to the Garden? Somewhere on earth but hidden?
As I said, I believe I have answers to some of these, but I still think there's value in revisiting our assumptions and examining what we believe... even in the little nuances, because there is sometimes great wisdom and impact in those little realizations, at least in my experience.
Do you have any answers you'd like to share for any of these questions? Do you have questions about Genesis 2-3 that I didn't mention here? I'd love to hear your thoughts!