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Posted by Lisa Lewis Koster - - 0 comments

When it comes to original sin, I think Eve gets a bum rap. She’s always blamed for leading Adam into sin, but I think the responsibly for his sin should fall squarely on his own shoulders. I just read an article that said, “she must have used the same twisted arguments [as satan] to convince Adam [to eat the forbidden fruit.]" I have two arguments against this:

Argument One: In Genesis 2, Adam was the one who received the command from God not to eat the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. GE 2:16 “And the LORD God commanded the man, "You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; 17 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." Eve was not there when God gave this command to Adam; her creation is not recorded until verse twenty two. GE 2:22 “Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.”

We know Eve is aware of this command because of her reply to the serpent in Genesis chapter three. GE 3:2 "We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, 3 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.'" Now, her version of this command is exaggerated because “you must not touch it” is added, but we don’t know if this addition came from her or if it came from Adam and she was merely repeating it. Maybe Adam added this warning for emphasis. We have no way of knowing if God also spoke the command directly to Eve or if it was left to Adam to relay it to her. Either way, we know Adam did hear it directly from God.

Argument Two: Adam was no innocent bystander. Eve did not walk up to Adam out of the blue and offer him the forbidden fruit. He was fully aware of the discourse that took place between Eve and the serpent because he was there! GE 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.”

We’re all responsible for our own actions, and Adam is responsible for his regardless of what Eve did or who sinned first.

2 CO 5:10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive what is due him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.

GA 6:4 Each one should test his own actions. Then he can take pride in himself, without comparing himself to somebody else.

I don’t think Adam needed any convincing, nor is any recorded. We’re only told that she “gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it.” As James says, JA 1:14 “each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. 15 Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.”

We often wonder what it would be like to live in a world without sin, and for those who have accepted Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, one day we will know. But did you ever wonder what would have happened if Eve had eaten the fruit and then Adam refused? What would have happened if Adam had said, “I can’t believe you did that! Eve, I am so sorry. This is going to change everything…”

We are all responsible for our own actions, but unfortunately, we’re not the only ones who pay the price.

Father, forgive me for the times I've doubted you and relied on my own reasoning. It leads me into trouble every time! Help me to walk closely with you and trust fully in your promises to provide me with all I need. I love you! Lisa
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Posted by Lisa Lewis Koster - - 0 comments

This week at Journey I taught about Creation.

It just so happened that while I was preparing my lesson, I finally opened an email that had been languishing in my inbox for several weeks.

It just so happened that the email contained an illustration of God as the Potter that would fit perfectly with my lesson. Now, I do believe that some things that happen are just a coincidence, but I also believe that this many coinciding events are not coincidence but God incidents. I could see His hand as I was putting the Creation message together, but I had no idea it wouldn’t end there!

It just so happened that after teaching in the evening I was unexpectedly able to leave an hour earlier than I normally do, and

It just so happened that when I turned the car on the radio played, “Lord if I'm the clay then lay me down On your spinning wheel, Shape me into something you can fill with something real” (Caedmon's Call “Hands of the Potter”). I’d never heard this song before, and just caught the last line. Now God really had my attention, because at the end of my teaching I posed two questions to ask God that I had gleaned from the email: How would You like to shape my life? (vs. me deciding what I’d like to do) and How can I cooperate with that shaping?

I had already planned to post something else today, but when I heard these words my mind started racing back and linking all these “coincidences.” Because I was processing, I wasn’t paying any attention to the song currently playing, but again, the last line grabbed my attention:
“Lift up your heart and be amazed And be changed by a perfect God.” (Perfect People, Natalie Grant)

This was too much! I’ve seen God’s hand in things before, but I’ve never had this many promptings in such close succession. One thing God impressed upon me was that while I had posed those two questions to those attending the Bible study, I’d never posed them to God for myself. Obviously, that is something God wants me to do!

There was a time when this series of events would have terrified me. I think that’s because God doesn’t usually call me to things I’m already comfortable doing, but to things that I either don’t feel qualified for or have never even considered. Plus, quite often the things God calls me to are difficult, and He doesn’t show me when or how it’s all going to end. All I get is the next step, which, in looking at Scripture, is how He generally works. Yet I came home excited! God is doing something new and He wants me to be a part of it! Something amazing and life changing!

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” ~ Proverbs 3:5-6

God, I thank you that you are the same yesterday, today and forever, and that you speak to us today just as clearly as you spoke when you walked this earth. Thank you for speaking to me and teaching me to listen. I do want what you want for me. Please show me how you want to shape my life, and how I can cooperate with you! And thank you for promising to be with me every step of the way! I love you so much! Lisa
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Posted by Lisa Lewis Koster - - 0 comments

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” ~ Proverbs 3:5-6

I was doing so well, and for so long...

Then I messed it up.

And I was so close!

I was walking in faith, full of peace one minute, and the next minute it was all gone.

God told me He would take care of it and I believed Him, at least for a while. Actually, a long while given my default, “I’ll take care of this so You don’t have to bother” mindset. I wasn’t scurrying around trying to make something happen, but peacefully following God’s lead as I did my part. Then one day, something changed. It may have been the looming deadline, or the only remaining lead turning into a dead end.

Looking back, I think being rejected by the only place I knew of to ask for help was what caused me to pull the whole mess into my own hands and start to panic. What if this? What if that?

What happened? I started leaning on my own understanding, which according to Proverbs 3:5 means I did not trust the Lord with all my heart. You know the kind of thinking I’m talking about:

“I’m not qualified for this;”

“I’m not gifted in this;”

“How am I ever going to do this?”

I I I I I! Good grief!

Thankfully, my lapse lasted only a day.  My peace returned when I placed it all back in God’s hands. I already had a lot of people praying about the situation, but I called in a couple die-hard prayer warriors and that made all the difference. Not only did I have my peace back, but within a day I had the solution. God told me who to go to, I did, and now it’s all taken care of.

Oh, how I wish I had made it without the lapse in faith! I was only a day away. But I am so thankful that I made it so far. Maybe next time I’ll get it right.

Thank you Jesus, for how far you’ve brought me from my “taking care of it myself” mode. Thank you for the peace You give when I trust you as I should, and thank you for understanding and helping me to get back on track when I fall short. Thank you for being the God of second chances who never gives up on me even when I give up on myself. Most of all, thank you for always keeping Your promises and finishing what You start!

“[He] who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion…” ~ Philippians 1:6

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