Last week we looked at the meaning of the word gospel, which is to bring good and joyful news. This week we’ll go back to the beginning of our Bibles and look at some early hints of God’s ultimate redemptive plan.
We all know the story of Adam and Eve’s first sin, found in Genesis 3. Temptation, followed by thought, followed by action, followed by shame. This cycle hasn’t changed since the first sin, and every one of us now lives with sin ingrained in our very human nature, a Biblical doctrine known as original sin (Psalm 51:5, Jer 17:9, Rom 5:12).
After they sinned, Adam and Eve tried to fix the problem themselves. They covered their nakedness by sewing fig leaves together, hid from God, and blamed others (Gen 3:7-13). Theirs is a perfect example of attempting to hide or cover sin and shame by works and determination. It didn’t work in the garden, and it doesn’t work today. Sin cannot be removed by human effort (Eph 2:8-9, Rom 9:16).
Immediately after God handed down the punishment for their sin (Gen 3:14-19), we read, “and the LORD God made for Adam and for his wife garments of skins and clothed them” (Gen 3:21). Just as God warned Adam when He placed him in the garden, sin caused death (Gen 2:17). This clothing of animal skin God made for them was the first death and first sacrifice for sin, a literal covering of Adam and Eve’s shame and nakedness at the expense of another’s life. This no doubt served as a daily reminder of the deadliness of sin. And while the Bible doesn’t specify which animal was killed to obtain this skin-covering, my speculation it that it was a lamb because Jesus was referred to as the lamb of God (John 1:29, 1 Cor 5:7, 1 Peter 1:19). As we study Scripture we find the LORD is intentional in everything He does!
From the very first sin God Himself provided the sacrifice to cover man’s iniquities. This is vital to understand, as it directly points to what He would do through Christ on the cross 4,000 years later. God’s plan of redeeming His children from their sins has always been through the work of His own hands and we have never, even from the very first sin, been able to cover or atone for our offenses. Our job is simply to repent and believe (Mark 1:15).
To God be the glory for His amazing plan of redemption, crafted from before the beginning of time to bring us into glory and to bring honor to His name!
Next week we’ll continue our look at the gospel in Genesis, and what we’ll discover may completely change your perspective on those highly detailed genealogies in Scripture.