White 1 - Sin Changes Everything

Teaching 1: The Beginning of Life as We Know It 

  

Timeless Truth: Sin changes everything. 

  

Thoughts 

 For the Native American our ancestorial way of life was one of survival.  Suffering and hardships were just a part of life.  But we never knew the depth of pain and suffering until the Europeans came to our land. As we look back at all the evil and wickedness we have experienced we could ask the question, “How could a good God allow this evil to take place?”  

Evil is a part of every people group because all two-leggeds have suffered the effects of the disobedience of our original parents Adam and Eve.  Because they listened to Satan rather than obeying Creator’s commands, they opened the spiritual door for the Devil to infect our hearts and bring evil into our world. 

Creator’s Word call disobedience “sin.”  I am often confronted with the argument that the word “sin” is not found our Native language.  They tell me that “sin” is a white word and since that word is not found in our language indigenous people do not sin. 

My answer?  In many of our Native cultures we do not have a word for “goodbye” so does that mean we do not “goodbye”?  Do we not leave the presence of our friends and loved ones every day?  We may not have a word for “goodbye” but by our actions we do it every day.    

So it is with sin.  Just because we do not have a word for it doesn’t mean we don’t do it.  By our actions we disobey Creator or sin every day. 

The consequences of sin sometimes come in the form of “natural evil,” including natural disasters, disease, and death, or in the form of “intentional evil”—those hurts perpetuated by one person against another.  

The goal of this teaching is to help new followers of Jesus recognize that nothing is as it should be. As much as we know that creation reveals our Creator, it also reveals how far away we are living the life God wants us to live. The earth itself is cursed because of man’s sin. It is only in light of the sinless Garden of Eden that we can get a taste of the eternal goodness promised and described in Creator’s book of Revelation, chapters 21-22.  

 For a brief time, there was no evil, no death, no pain, and no tears. The promise of Creator is that He will one day recreate the earth. Once again, there will no more evil, no death, no pain, and no tears. Yet the world to come will be infinitely better than even the garden! In it, we will no longer have an opportunity to sin, Satan will be vanquished, and we will have an understanding of the grace-filled redemption wrought on our behalf. In that day, God will once again dwell among us as He did with Adam and Eve. In the meantime, believers learn to “reverse the curse” by resisting the temptations of the evil one, by representing God in the fallen world, and by striving to restore broken relationships. 

 From the very first story in Genesis of the very first family, sin wreaks havoc on all humans. They lived in a perfect environment, yet they sinned anyway. This is the first sin and it is sometimes called “the fall.” Sounds almost accidental doesn’t it? Like somebody tripped and fell head over heels into sin. As the story makes clear, however, Adam and Eve deliberately chose their path. The rest of us have followed in their footsteps and made the same choice ever since. 

 But with the first sin came Creator’s plan to put us back on the good path. With each successive story—Cain and Abel, Noah’s family and beyond—we see Creator’s  repeated faithfulness to redeem all helpless and hopeless two-leggeds. God is always the pursuer. Man’s inner nature is to always choose sin. As this evil cycle continues from generation to generation we are reminded that God alone is our only hope.  

  

Teaching: Sin Changes Everything 

  

Begin your lesson by asking your people to remember a time when something they had made was somehow broken. Or share your own story of something precious being broken. Was it worth repairing? Or was it ruined beyond repair?  

When Creator made the original man and woman they were precious in his sight and he delighted in walking and talking with them.  But sin entered their relationship and something precious was broken. And now today because we live in an evil, sin-filled world, everything is slightly broken.

 

1. Sin changes the relationship between God and man 

  • God and mankind before the Fall 

  • Man and woman are both created in God’s image, and therefore worthy of dignity. 

  • Both to rule over creation and be fruitful and multiply. 

  • God and mankind had intimacy, walked face-to-face. 

  • God and mankind after the Fall 

  • Man and woman still reflect God’s image, but are fallen. 

  • Man and woman hide from God, try to cover themselves. 

  • God already pursues the sinner. 

  • Man blames God for giving him the woman. 

  

2. Sin changes the relationship between man and woman 

  • Before the Fall, man and woman lived in harmony and intimacy. 

  • One flesh, they experienced sexual intimacy ordained by God. 

  • They shared common purpose to rule and tend the garden. 

  • The rest of the Bible describes life in a fallen world. Relationships between two fallen human beings become extremely difficult. 

  • Adam and Eve were naked and ashamed, tried to cover themselves. 

  • They played the blame game. 

  • They experienced the curse and consequences of the now fallen world, including physical death. 

  

A. God has only two responses to sin.  If God is holy and good, He cannot let sin go unnoticed. 

  • God covers sin by grace. 

  • God sought Adam and Eve while they were in hiding. 

  • God gave them the opportunity to repent 

  • God provided the means of salvation for Noah and family in the ark. 

  • All human beings still live with the consequences of sin. 

  • God rightly judges sin. 

  • Everybody was judged in Noah’s day, except Noah and family. 

  • God waited patiently while evil worsened, providing in Noah a righteous example to all. 

  

3. Implications and Applications  

 A. Sin Changes Everything. 

  • Although we cannot know all the reasons why God created the world, we can know He did, and we know He desires a relationship with us. 

  • All humans are created in God’s image and are therefore worthy of dignity. 

  • The Creation reveals God’s power and divine nature; His “fingerprints” are clear. 

  • Creation is both dependent upon and accountable to the Creator. 

  • God cares for His creation and has left us as stewards of it. Therefore, we should care for it also. 

   

B. God has given us a model for the family. Marriage is His idea and should be 

  • honored as holy. Sex is good when experienced within marriage. 

  • If the Creator is good, then He must do something about the evil in His creation. 

  • God wants us to experience healthy and intimate relationships with one another. 

  • People are not “naturally good.” We now have a fallen nature, prone to sin.  

  • The power struggle that we might experience with a spouse is a consequence of sin. We can learn to “reverse the curse” by extending more grace to one another. Our mate is a personal gift from God.  

  • Understanding the role of sin brings a proper perspective to life in this world. All evil can be traced back to the Fall. 

  • God makes our work worth doing. 

  • God makes our future hopeful so as believers we can wait patiently. 

  • It is possible to walk faithfully with God in a corrupt culture. 

  

TALKING CIRCLE 

  1. WHAT IS ONE THING YOU LEARNED FROM THIS TEACHING? 

  1. CAN YOU RECALL ANY TEACHINGS LIKE THIS FROM THE ELDERS?