Nathaniel Stalling Jr is Pastor of Burning Bush Temple of Christ Church.
Where Are You?
Have we wandered so far from the truth that all traces of it has become unrecognizable? How is that even possible?
Before we become so entrenched in our self-proclaimed righteousness let’s consider where we are and, how we got here.
The first recorded question that God asked man (Adam) was, “where are you?”.
“And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool [afternoon breeze] of the day, so the man and his wife hid and kept themselves hidden from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. But the Lord God called to Adam, and said to him, “Where are you?” Genesis 3:8,9 AMP
Who Told You That You Were Naked?
When we consider this question contextually in view of all that came before it, we are forced to conclude that God was not referring to Adams’ geographical location. Since He had created everything and positioned them exactly where He wanted them. So, what was He referring to?
It is my understanding that He was referencing Adams’ moral location. Had he, Adam, by an act of disobedience, activated his conscience?
Adam was the natural benefactor of all that God deemed ‘Good’. He had reaped the wages of righteousness.
Not only had he not reaped the wages of sin, he didn’t know the wages of sin. He was completely unaware of the effects sin would have on his conscience. In fact, we have no reason to believe he was aware he had a conscience. I believe that it is for this reason that God asked him such provocative questions:
1. “where are you?”
2. “who told you that you were naked?”
3. “Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you that you should not eat?”
After Adam had gone through all of his excuses for disobeying God he was left with the only, and obvious, choice. Guilty!
The provocative questions posed by God forced him into the light of his own conscience.
Have You Eaten From The Forbidden Tree?
The first-time awareness of guilt and shame so overwhelmed him that he didn’t know what to do. So, he tried to hide.
We have been doing the same ever since.
Someone has said, “If the best of men had his innermost thoughts written on his forehead, he’d never take off his hat.”
Then, God pushed Adam further, asking, “Who told you, you were naked?”
There is no where in the Genesis account, with reference to the exchange between God and Adam, where that question was answered. You know why? Because the answer was provided by his newly activated conscience. The part of him that informs him of right and wrong.
“When Gentiles, who do not have the Law [since it was given only to Jews], do instinctively the things the Law requires [guided only by their conscience], they are a law to themselves, though they do not have the Law. They show that the essential requirements of the Law are written in their hearts; and their conscience [their sense of right and wrong, their moral choices] bearing witness and their thoughts alternately accusing or perhaps defending them …,” Romans 2:14, 15 AMP.
God wanted him to know why he felt so much shame and guilt, and that He would not leave or forsake him.
Every now and then we need to ask ourselves that question [where am I?]. Is my relationship with the Lord as it should be? Can we say with the Apostle Paul:
“I am aware of nothing against myself and I feel blameless, but I am not by this acquitted [before God]. It is the Lord who judges me”. 1 Corinthians 4:4 AMP
If we don’t converse with the Lord daily, even with a short “thank you Lord”, we should at least pay attention to our conscience. The Holy Scripture tells us:
“For ever since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through His workmanship [all His creation, the wonderful things that He has made], so that they [who fail to believe and trust in Him] are without excuse and without defense”. Romans 1:20 AMP