Sabbath School Summary
By Elder Dr Masimba Mavaza
‘And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel’ ” (Genesis 3:15, NKJV).
Amid all that God had given our first parents in Eden also came a warning: “ ‘Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die’ ” (Gen. 2:16, 17, NKJV). This warning against eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil shows us that, though they were to know good, they were not to know evil.
We certainly can understand why, can’t we? And, too, the threat of death attached to the warning about disobedi-ence (Gen. 2:17) would be fulfilled: they would die (Gen. 3:19). Not only forbidden to eat from the tree, they also were driven from the Garden of Eden (Gen. 3:24), and thus had no access to what could have given them eternal life as sinners (Gen. 3:22).
However, amid this tragedy comes hope, which is found in Genesis 3:15, called the protoevangelium, or “the first gospel promise.” Yes, this verse presents the first gospel promise found in the Bible, the first time humans are told that, despite the Fall, God has made a way of escape for us all.
SABBATH: Satan does not give up. After his failed rebellion in heaven, he ruined the perfect world of our first parents; Adam & Eve. But God does not give us up either. Grace found the pair after the fall (Gen. 3:15). The pair was given access to all things in the world except the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. God wanted man to know only good & not evil (Gen. 2:16, 17, 3:19, 22, 24). He gave an escape; vs.15.
SUNDAY: The devil chose serpent as his medium of deception. “The” used in the texts signifies a figure already known to the reader (see Gen. 3:1, 2 Cor. 11:3, Rev. 12:7-9, Isa. 27:1). At first, the serpent was a beautiful creature (PP, p. 53). In this form, Satan mixed error with truth (Matt. 4:6). The Bible depicts him as a literal being who comes not as God’s foe but uses God’s words to aid his evil schemes.
MONDAY: Initially, the devil did not make a direct attack but tried to engage Eve in a conversation. He sowed seeds of doubt about God & His words in Eve. He is the father of lies (Gen. 2:16, 17, 3:1-6; John 8:44). Satan attacked the issue of death & the tree of the knowledge of good & evil (Gen. 2:17; 3:4, 5). Eve saw the fruit to be good & ate (Gen. 3:6; 1:4). “Immortality” idea from Satan affected ancient sects.
TUESDAY: Adam & Eve sewn for themselves fig leaves to cover their nakedness caused by sin. By wearing a garment of their own it was as if they have replaced God & attempted to cover their sins. Man cannot be saved by his own works. Only Christ can save (Gen. 3:7-13, Ps. 8:5; 104:1, 2, Gen. 1:7, 16, 25, Gal. 2:16). God took the first step to search for fallen man & bid him to repent (Gen. 3:9, 4:9, 3:14-19).
WEDNESDAY: Adam blamed Eve for the sin & Eve also blamed the serpent. The serpent who was the architect of the whole drama was the first to be judged by God (Gen. 3:14, 15). Sin led to a “reversal” of Creation; the first leaf fell, earth grew thorns, & the air became chilly. Before man was judged, God promised redemption (Gen. 3:15, Rom. 16:20, Heb. 2:14, Rev. 12:17). Satan’s a defeated foe (Rev. 20:10)
THURSDAY: Because of the grace of God the destiny of Adam & Eve was not the same as the serpent. Curse was placed on the serpent & the ground but before God judges man, there’s a promise of salvation through a Messianic prophecy (see Gen. 3:14-24; 1 Tim. 2:14, 15). God did not plan for man to die. Through childbearing, Adam was to see hope of life (Gen. 3:20). God spared man of eternal death.
FRIDAY: Eve was taken from the side of Adam to signify that she should be his equal. But after sin, Eve the first to sin, Adam was to rule over her. She was to be meek & Adam was to love & care for her. The fall shows that our choices have an impact on biological life. Because man ate form the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, he lost access to the tree of life (Gen. 2:9, Prov. 3:1, 2, Rev. 22:2).
—Ellen G. White, Testimonies for the Church, vol. 3, p. 484.
Deceive- It means to give people false hopes and makes them believe that they are doing the right thing (2 Kings 19:10, Isa. 37:10, Jer. 49:16). It is “nasha” in the Hebrew verb.
Tree of life- It was also placed in the Garden of Eden as was the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Man was to live as he ate from it.
The Serpent- It refers to Satan/the devil. In the ancient Near East, the serpent personified the power of evil.
Sects- This refers to ancient Egyptian and Greek religions that were deceived by Satan’s doctrine of immortality.
SUNDAY- The Serpent
MONDAY- The Forbidden Fruit
TUESDAY- Hiding Before God
WEDNESDAY- The Fate of the Serpent
THURSDAY- Human Destiny
📌 God confronted Adam in Eden and asked him questions in order not only to establish his guilt but also to lead him to repentance. This motif reappears with Cain (Gen. 4:9, 10), the Flood (Gen. 6:5–8), the Tower of Babel (Gen. 11:5), and Sodom and Gomorrah (Gen. 18:21). How is the idea of an investigative judgment revealed in these incidents?
📌 Why did Eve think that eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil would give her wisdom? How could we avoid, in our context, making a similar mistake; that is, openly defying God’s Word in hope of something “better” than what God has offered us?