We are studying the Storyline of the Bible in Women’s Bible Study this year. The first week was about creation and the fall. I left thinking again about Eve listening to the serpent. God had already said that if they ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, they would surely die (Gen. 2:17). His word was clear. And yet when she started listening to the serpent, things didn’t seem as clear. The serpent said to Eve, “You surely shall not die!” (Gen. 3:4)
I am reading a book my mom gave me by Martyn Lloyd-Jones called Spiritual Depression. No, I don’t feel spiritually depressed, but it is an excellent book. Lloyd-Jones writes,
“…the ultimate cause of spiritual depression is unbelief. For if it were not for unbelief even the devil could do nothing. It is because we listen to the devil instead of listening to God that we go down before him and fall before his attacks. That is why the psalmist keeps on saying to himself: ‘Hope thou in God for I shall yet praise Him…’ He reminds himself of God.” (emphasis added)
I want to know God and listen to His Word.
Jesus says in John 8:32, “You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”
He then asked in John 8:43-44, “Why do you not understand My speech? Because you are not able to listen to my word. You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources; for he is a liar and the father of it.” (emphasis added)
By contrast, in John 8:47, Jesus says, “He who is of God hears God’s words.”
Interestingly, Jesus goes on in John 8 to say in verses 51 and 52 that if anyone keeps his word, he shall never see or taste death. This takes me right back to the garden. If you eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (essentially, if you disobey what God has said), you will surely die. Here in John 8, if you keep his word, you shall never see death.
What incredible contrasts between God versus Satan; life versus death; truth versus lies; obedience and subsequent blessing versus disobedience (or sin) and resulting judgment.
Genesis 3 makes it clear we needed a Savior. Thank you, Jesus, for being the serpent-crusher and rescuing us from sin and death through faith in You!
So who am I listening to? May I always listen to you, Lord, and believe You and speak truth to the lies that come against me.
Tomorrow, I’ll tell you why this is so important to me today.