Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths.
In Genesis 2:25, Adam and Eve were naked and felt no shame. They felt no shame because there was no sin. But by 3:7 they have sinned, and now they feel shame in their nakedness. Satan had suggested to Eve that she was missing out, that God was holding back something she needed, and that God could not be trusted. Satan lied.
What does sin bring Adam and Eve? Exactly what sin brings us: guilt, shame, fear, mistrust, alienation from God, rupture of relationships, and the end of all joy and peace. In a word, sin brings death. So much for Satan’s promise! Sin may look good, but it hurts us. It always hurts us. Remember: sin will always hurt you sooner or later. It often hurts others too.
How did Adam and Eve respond to their shame? Fig leaves; they tried to hide behind fig leaves. Trust and transparency had vanished, and barriers went up. And ever since Adam and Eve, we have all been wearing masks, hiding, posing, pretending, running from God, and blaming others.
Our only escape is the grace of God. God alone can tear the walls down and set us free. How does God set us free? It takes blood, because someone has to die for sin. So, God threw away the fig leaves and clothed Adam and Eve with animal skins. To get these animal skins required death, bloodshed, and sacrifice. This is the first faint echo of a savior, the first faint echo of a future day when God Himself would shed his blood for you and for me.
The first thing Adam and Eve do after they sin is hide. They feel guilt and shame, unworthy of being with God, so they hide. How does God respond to this hiding? Does He turn His back on them? Fold His arms in disgust? Give them a disapproving scowl?
Hardly! He does the opposite. He pursues them, seeks them, chases after them. It’s the first game of hide and seek. They hide and God seeks. When God asks Adam, “Where are you?”, this is not a request for information. Omniscience does not need to request information. God doesn’t need to ask, but Adam needs to be asked. God is drawing Adam out of hiding ever so gently. God is wooing, drawing, and pursuing, just like He woos you.
How do we hide? We hide with busyness, with shopping, with overwork. We hide with TV, with Facebook (ironically), with travel. We hide with humor, with sarcasm, with shyness. We hide in a thousand ways.
Me? I hide by being in control (or trying to be in control). I hide by reading, by running, by asking questions. I hide in all kinds of ways, some of which I’m unaware. I hide so well that sometimes I hide from myself that I’m hiding. How about you? How are you hiding these days? Here’s the good news: you can stop hiding. Hiding is the fundamental human strategy of dealing with sin. God’s strategy is better. Confess your sin and receive God’s overwhelming grace.