Genesis 3

Chapter 3

3:1  Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?

The serpent

The serpent, in his Edenic form, is not to be thought of as a writhing reptile. That is the effect of the curse Genesis 3:14 . The creature which lent itself to Satan may well have been the most beautiful as was the most "subtle" of creatures less than man. Traces of that beauty remain despite the curse. Every movement of a serpent is graceful, and many species are beautifully coloured. In the serpent, Satan first appeared as "an angel of light" 2 Corinthians 11:14 .

3:14  And the LORD God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life:

And the Lord God said

The Adamic Covenant conditions the life of fallen man--conditions which must remain till, in the kingdom age, "the creation also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the sons of God" Romans 8:21 . The elements of the Adamic Covenant are:

(1) The serpent, Satan's tool, is cursed ( Genesis 3:14 ), and becomes God's illustration in nature of the effects of sin--from the most beautiful and subtle of creatures to a loathsome reptile! The deepest mystery of the atonement is intimated here. Christ, "made sin for us," in bearing our judgment, is typified by the brazen serpent ; Numbers 21:5-9 ; John 3:14 ; 2 Corinthians 5:21 . Brass speaks of judgment--in the brazen altar, of God's judgment, and in the laver, of self-judgment.

(2) The first promise of a Redeemer ( Genesis 3:15 ). Here begins the "Highway of the Seed," Abel, Seth, Noah Genesis 6:8-10, Shem Genesis 9:26 Genesis 9:27 Abraham Genesis 12:1-4, Isaac Genesis 17:19-21 Jacob Genesis 28:10-14, Judah Genesis 49:10, David 2 Samuel 7:5-17 Immanuel-Christ ; Isaiah 7:9-14 ; Matthew 1:1 Matthew 1:20-23 ; 1 John 3:8 ; John 12:31 .

(3) The changed state of the woman ( Genesis 3:16 ). In three particulars:

(a) Multiplied conception; (b) motherhood linked with sorrow; (c) the headship of the man (cf) Genesis 1:26 Genesis 1:27 The entrance of sin, which is disorder, makes necessary a headship, and it is vested in man ; 1 Timothy 2:11-14 ; Ephesians 5:22-25 ; 1 Corinthians 11:7-9 .

(4) The earth cursed ( Genesis 3:17 ) for man's sake. It is better for fallen man to battle with a reluctant earth than to live without toil.

(5) The inevitable sorrow of life ( Genesis 3:17 ).

(6) The light occupation of Eden Genesis 2:15 changed to burdensome labour Genesis 3:18 Genesis 3:19 .

(7) Physical death Genesis 3:19 ; Romans 5:12-21, See "Death (spiritual)" Genesis 2:17 . (See Scofield "Ephesians 2:5") .

See for the other covenants:

EDENIC (See Scofield "Genesis 1:28")

NOAHIC (See Scofield "Genesis 9:1")

ABRAHAMIC (See Scofield "Genesis 15:18")

MOSAIC (See Scofield "Exodus 19:25")

PALESTINIAN (See Scofield "Deuteronomy 30:3")

DAVIDIC (See Scofield "2 Samuel 7:16")

NEW (See Scofield "Hebrews 8:8")

3:15  And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.

thou shalt bruise his heel

The chain of references which begins here includes the promises and prophecies concerning Christ which were fulfilled in His birth and works at His first advent. See, for line of unfulfilled promises and prophecies: "Christ (second advent)" Deuteronomy 30:3 . (See Scofield "Acts 1:11") "Kingdom" ; Genesis 1:26-28 ; Zechariah 12:8 "Kingdom (N.T.)" ; Luke 1:31 ; 1 Corinthians 15:28 "Day of the Lord" ; Isaiah 2:10 ; Revelation 19:11

3:19  In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.

return Death (physical).

Genesis 5:5 ; 3:19 ; Hebrews 9:27

3:20  And Adam called his wife's name Eve; because she was the mother of all living.


i.e. living, or life-giver.

3:21  Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.

coats of skins

Coats of skins: Type of "Christ, made unto us righteousness"-- a divinely provided garment that the first sinners might be made fit for God's presence. See Righteousness, garment Genesis 3:21 ; Revelation 19:8 .

3:23  Therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken.

Therefore the Lord God

The Second Dispensation: Conscience. By disobedience man came to a personal and experimental knowledge of good and evil--of good as obedience, of evil as disobedience to the known will of God. Through that knowledge conscience awoke. Expelled from Eden and placed under the second, or ADAMIC COVENANT, man was responsible to do all known good, to abstain from all known evil, and to approach God through sacrifice. The result of this second testing of man is stated in Genesis 6:5 and the dispensation ended in the judgment of the Flood. Apparently "the east of the garden" Genesis 3:24 where were the cherubims and the flame, remained the place of worship through this second dispensation. See for the other six dispensations:

INNOCENCE (See Scofield "Genesis 1:28")

HUMAN GOVERNMENT (See Scofield "Genesis 8:21")

PROMISE (See Scofield "Genesis 12:1")

LAW (See Scofield "Exodus 19:8")

GRACE (See Scofield "John 1:17")

KINGDOM (See Scofield "Ephesians 1:10")

3:24  So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.


See note, (See Scofield "Ezekiel 1:5")