In Genesis 3, after the Fall, the Lord’s opening words are all questions: “Where are you? . . .
In contrast, God’s first declarative statement in Chapter 3—His first statement of fact—follows these questions. When speaking to the serpent, what does God say, and what is the meaning of His words? See Gen. 3:14-15.
Think through the implications of what is happening here. God’s first declarative statement to the fallen world is, in fact, a condemnation of Satan, not humanity. Indeed, even in that condemnation of Satan, God gives humanity the hope and promise of the gospel (Gen 3:15). As He declares Satan’s doom, He proclaims humanity’s hope. Despite their sin, the Lord immediately reveals to Adam and Eve the promise of redemption.
Notice, too, that only after this promise, only after hope of grace and salvation is given in Gen 3:15 (known also as the “First Gospel Promise”), does the Lord pronounce judgment on Adam and Eve: “To the woman He said, I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception; in pain you shall bring forth children. . . .’ Then to Adam He said, ‘Because you have heeded the voice of your wife . . . .’” (Gen. 3:16-17, NKJV).
Don’t miss this point: the promise of salvation comes first, followed by judgment. Only against the backdrop of the gospel, then, does judgment come; otherwise, judgment would mean nothing but condemnation, but Scripture is clear: “For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved” (John 3:17).
Why is it so important always to dwell on the fact that God’s purpose is to save us, not to condemn us? How does sin in our life cause us to lose sight of that crucial truth? That is, how does sin cause us to turn away from God?