We begin our series on Wicked Women of the Bible. I was asked, "Why don't you do a series on Great Women instead of Wicked Women?" We do the great women on Mother's Days. "Are you going to do a series on "Wicked Men"? We do those frequently. Have we forgotten where wickedness began? I want to focus on how wicked women affect our society, church, lives. We're trained to think men are more wicked than women. That is unless you ask a woman. Women know women can be much more wicked than men. Since I've been in the ministry, I've encountered many wicked people and the wicked women top the list outdoing the men, but sometimes the wicked men acted more like women.
Wickedness began somewhere. Guess where and with which gender? Yes. Wickedness originated with a woman. In fact, at the time she introduced wickedness in Genesis 3:6 she was simply called "woman!" She wasn't given a "real" name until later (Genesis 3:20). The entrance of evil came into the natural world through a woman.
Genesis 3:20-23 Adam named his wife Eve, because she would become THE MOTHER OF ALL THE LIVING. The LORD God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them. And the LORD God said, "The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever." So the LORD God banished him from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he had been taken.
This was the results of the work of a wicked woman named Eve. The perfect creation of God became corrupt through Eve. It's because of wicked woman Eve we have sickness, disease, die, and return to the dust. It's because of wicked woman Eve your father, mother, sisters, brothers, children, and loved ones die. It's because of wicked woman Eve we lost our place in Paradise, the ground is cursed with thorns and thistles, men have to work and sweat until death, childbearing is painful for you women and the husband rules over the wife. I know this statement may have struck a nerve, so let's read it.
Genesis 3:16 To the woman he said, "I will greatly increase your pains in childbearing; with pain you will give birth to children. Your desire will be for YOUR HUSBAND, AND HE WILL RULE OVER YOU."
(NLT) Genesis 3:16 Then he said to the woman, "You will bear children with intense pain and suffering. And though your desire will be for YOUR HUSBAND, HE WILL BE YOUR MASTER."
Does anyone still question if evil and wickedness came through Eve? Everything not perfect about life as God created it links back to Eve. We haven't yet mentioned the most wicked event of all caused by wicked woman Eve. It was because of Eve, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, had to suffer and die on the cross for our sins (Gen 3:14-15). "Delbert, you're blaming it all on Eve. What about Adam?" Question: How long was Adam in the garden obedient to God prior to the woman's coming into the picture?
Let's rehearse what happened. God created everything perfect, fully formed, and mature be it the sun and moon and stars in the heavens, land and water, plants and trees, day and night, fish and fowl (if you wonder which came first the chicken or the egg, there's your answer), animals and reptiles and insects, and finally man - one individual being, but both male and female created in the image of God he created them (Gen 1:27). Man was created perfect, mature, and beautiful.
Next, God himself planted a garden in the east of Eden (Gen 2:8). There he put the man. It wasn't just any garden. This was God's garden full of endless delights to satisfy all mans senses. All types of trees were there, but we're only given the names of two trees both located in the middle of the garden: the tree of life; and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
Genesis 2:16-17 And the LORD God commanded the man, "You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die."
God gave one commandment, not ten, not six-hundred (as in the Law of Moses). One: don't eat from this one tree. If you ingest from this tree, bad things, evil things, wicked things will happen and you will die. The man said, "I got it." He avoided the tree.
Time went by and the Lord saw "It is not good for the man to be alone" (Gen 2:18). Man is created with a longing for companionship. We may think we're self-sufficient, but we're not. The man didn't have a companion, so the Lord wanted to find one suitable for him. First God tried pets - lots of pets - all kinds of pets. God brought all the creatures for Adam to check out and name but Miss Alligator to Miss Zebra were not suitable for Adam (Gen 2:19-20). Pets only do so much.
Genesis 2:21-25 So the LORD God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man's ribs and closed up the place with flesh. Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man. The man said, "This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called 'woman,' for she was taken out of man." For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh. The man and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame.
The man was made from dirt. The woman was made of better material and God's completion of all creation. After the Lord brought all the creatures to Adam, some divine anesthesia, and serious reconstructive surgery, the Lord brought her to the man. What a moment! The man woke in naming mode. "She shall be called WOMAN!" "O Darling...! O Baby! O God! This is way better than a pet!" He broke into poetic song amazingly giving man's first recorded words in the Bible when man first saw his WOMAN! "This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh..." "I'm going to keep you!" She was like man, but with a womb - woman. She was perfect, fully mature and fully formed.
We don't know how long man obeyed the "do not eat from this tree" rule, but obviously a long while. It was some time between man's creation and when the woman came into the picture, but when she did everything changed. How many men agree everything changes when your woman comes into your world? All was beautiful until the serpent got into the garden. The first place the serpent appears in scripture is the home.
Genesis 3:1-5 Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, "DID GOD REALLY SAY, 'You must not eat from any tree in the garden'?" THE WOMAN SAID TO THE SERPENT, "We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, 'You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you MUST NOT TOUCH IT, or you will die.'" "You will not surely die," the serpent said to the woman. "For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil."
This is the first question in the Bible and it's by the serpent. We'll talk more about this in a moment. Why did the serpent approach the woman? Why not go to the man? 1 Peter 3:7 says the woman is the "weaker partner." This is true from the physical and emotional standpoint. She is not the warrior partner. She is to be defended and protected by the husband. The woman is wired to have tender and compassionate qualities so necessary in the raising of children. The woman has a level of emotional and physical vulnerability the man does not have.
Was this a real talking snake? You'd think she would have been suspicious of a talking reptile, but then I thought about it. I've got to admit if a reptile began talking to me, I'd be curious. I'd think this is a pretty intelligent snake. He (not it) no doubt was "snake-like." Was he slithering across the ground or wrapped around the limb of the forbidden tree? Probably not. Part of the curse to come on the serpent later from God was "crawl on your belly" (Gen 3:14). He was probably upright. I picture a 6 feet tall Geico gecko? At any rate it was Satan (Rev 12:9).
The serpent moved in with lies concerning two things: 1) the character of God; 2) the Word of God. Jesus said the devil is "the father of lies" (Joh 8:44). This was where the serpent fathered lies making God appear unloving, unfair, and selfish. The serpent craftily twisted the words of God as he does today into lies. It was here the woman fell taking the rest of us with her. I said this was the first question in the Bible. It's by the serpent. It released the most deadly, hellish, venomous force ever injected into humanity: the assumption that what God said is subject to our judgment, our right to question, our evaluation, and our assessment. "Hey woman, let's discuss the validity of what God said. Do you believe it's accurate? Did God really say...?" Every temptation you and I ever encounter involves this question.
She said, "...but God did say, 'You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die." God didn't say this (Gen 2:17). It seems she's somewhat sarcastic. "We can't even touch it!" God did restrict her! "We can't eat it! We can't even touch it!" The real fun stuff is restricted by God from us. We think "We can't do this and you can't do that!"
When we evaluate what God said we do what Eve did. We feel God is restrictive, unkind, and selfish, puts us in bondage, and limits us from truly enjoying all life has in our gardens. We decide God's lied to us.
Genesis 3:4-5 "YOU WILL NOT SURELY DIE," the serpent said to the woman. "FOR GOD KNOWS that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and YOU WILL BE LIKE GOD, knowing good and evil."
God even lied to us about the consequences of not doing what he said. You will not surely go to hell. You can be like God. What an intoxicating thought! She could be powerful like God! The serpent said God does not want you to be like him and he knows if you eat this you will be. This is why he doesn't want you to eat it.
Genesis 3:6 When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, SHE TOOK SOME AND ATE IT. SHE ALSO GAVE SOME TO HER HUSBAND, WHO WAS WITH HER, AND HE ATE IT.
What? Was Adam there the entire time? No. He was there in the garden with her. If we only read this it would appear he was with her.
1 Timothy 2:14 And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner.
Had the man been there, certainly he would have engaged in the conversation. He didn't. Why did Adam do it? Anything would be speculative. Obviously Eve didn't die when she ate it. Perhaps they thought God had lied to them. The truth is a man's woman has this much influence upon him. Oliver Wendell Holmes said, "Man has his will, but woman has her way." Sadly sometimes the way of the woman can be wicked. The serpent got to the man through the woman.
The serpent said, "For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like god, knowing good and evil."
Genesis 3:22 And the LORD God said, "The man has now become like one of us, KNOWING GOOD AND EVIL.
The serpent was correct, but not the way the woman or we think. The way a cancer surgeon knows cancer is not the way the cancer victim knows cancer. God knows good and evil from the outside looking at its destruction. She would know good and evil as a victim. She was evicted from her perfect paradise. Her oldest son Cain murdered her youngest son Abel. Cain became a total failure and vagabond. God would eventually annihilate their genealogies drowning all but eight people. She knew good and evil alright and because of Eve, so do we.
Satan left the garden. His work was successful and complete. The man and the woman were left to face God exactly as each of us. Evil and wickedness came into a perfect world through a perfect woman who turned wicked.
© Life Gate Ministries