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Beautiful Words Blog | Are You Sure About This? By Pastor John Moropoulos | Gateway Christian Fellowship

June 22, 2024

Genesis 2:17

Thesis: God gave us a choice, and there are consequences

Pain is unavoidable. No way around it. It is an inherent component of life. Physical pain is a reality, for some, an everyday experience. Emotional pain is just as real. It too is an everyday experience for many. For those for whom pain is not an everyday thing, there is still plenty of it.

The purpose of this post isn’t to explain the phenomenon of pain, or to answer the myriad of questions that the presence of pain brings to the surface. The attempt here is to address one question: where does pain come from? What is the origin of pain, and of its many comrades, frustration, fear, anger, doubt, confusion, isolation, the rest. Where did all the pain come from and did God have a hand in it?

To the second question, did God have a hand in the origins of pain, I believe the answer is yes. Pain became a possibility because of something God did. It’s right there at the beginning.

The LORD God commanded the man, saying, “From any tree of the garden you may eat freely; but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you will surely die.”

Genesis 2.16,17 NASB ‘95

It’s right there, the shocking evidence. God gave man something that would ultimately lead to all the pain, the sorrow, the heartbreak, anguish, suffering and terrors that the human race ever experienced. He gave man choice.

The choice was so simple. Eat from any tree but this one- from any plant or shrub, but not from this one. The problem of course is that humanity chose that very one. The open door that caused the whole problem was the choice, and God gave man the choice.

Scripture never tells us why God gave us choice, at least not in so many words. He did say however, “choose this day whom you will serve” (Joshua 24.15). I believe the reason God gave man choice is found in these words. God wanted some part of His creation to choose Him. In order to do that He gave man the opportunity to choose someone or something else. God took an enormous risk. And we know the consequences. Sin came into the species and into the world. The whole of creation was rocked by man’s abuse of the gift he had been given, choice. And God’s own Son would die.

But the Son of God didn’t die because sin won. He died so that sin would lose. This is the

glorious freedom that we walk in as the children of God. This is a freedom we have chosen.

Still, there is consequence to sin, both individual sin and corporate, familial sin. The whole creation groans Paul wrote. Sin’s consequences remain, for now.

Before we complain about that part however, let us never forget how precious our choice is. At the mere mention of slavery our whole being recoils. Whenever another human being is deprived of their freedom, that is their power to choose, our very nature reacts to it.

Many people blame God for all the evil, the pain, the horrors that continue in this world. Before we join that chorus let’s ask ourselves one question, “Would I be willing to give up my freedom, my power to choose, to live as one without will or decision, to resolve this problem?”

Our Lord used His power of choice to choose His Father’s will. Our hope for a day when there is no pain, nor any of its kin, is based solely and confidently on that.


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