Of Marriage and Curses

Adam is a lazy jerk.

The typical masculine failing is clearly revealed in the Genesis narrative. Adam was lazy. It’s not as if he was unaware of the Serpent’s presence in the Garden, or that he didn’t know about their conversation. It would have been a part of his natural moral awareness. Nor did her choice to partake of the Tree of Knowledge catch him by surprise. Nothing about the narrative hints that he was off elsewhere too busy to pay attention. He was the manager and guardian of the entire Garden, and fully capable of keeping track, as God had equipped him.

Rather, he couldn’t be bothered to do that part of his job that didn’t confront him every day. He had his routine and this was outside of it. Or maybe he was simply entertained by something in this visit and was unwilling to enforce God’s moral justice. At the point when Eve offered him the Forbidden Fruit, he could have turned it down but decided to indulge in the tempting morsel.

What was the curse upon his sin? To work hard and wear himself out. The whole point of a curse is a change from something good to something bad. Adam didn’t have to work that hard in the Garden. Whatever it meant for him to manage God’s Garden, it didn’t include sweating and fighting against a reluctant soil. Thus, because he was unwilling to exert that little effort to prevent the Fall, the Fall brings to him the utter necessity to work, to sweat and die in a sense of futility. The natural world was no longer a close ally.

In God’s Laws, and even more so in the Cross, we have a partial redemption. That is, we get a taste of what we could have had in the Garden, and what we will have once we leave this fallen plane of existence. We men are returned to a place where our work means something and we aren’t confined to the pitiful response of a natural world we no longer understand. In spiritual birth, the Laws of God start to make sense and we can feel our way through a natural world that is once again an ally. We see that truth through a mirror darkly, as it were, but we do see it.

Overcoming the Fall, inasmuch as it will happen in this life, means getting our butts in gear and taking command of the moral obligations God puts on us. We are training, practicing to return to God’s Garden. All that we do now on this earth is rework our awareness and our instincts so that we are ready to get to work.

The most awful lie told today in mainstream Christian churches is the disguised feminist “man up” crap. All it means is a fresh demand from devotees of Oester that men should stop being men and act like little boys obeying their mommies. Somewhere in Church History we got off of the Hebrew shepherd track and the hideous Anglo-Saxon image was substituted in its place. A Western man can be almost anything but a shepherd. And our mainstream Christian women want them to become neutered little men who do what their mommies tell them to do, because women are somehow the guardians of civilization. Whatever that means, it bears no resemblance to the Garden of God.

Each individual woman must find her own guidance from God in helping her man be less like Adam and more like the Son of God, Our Good Shepherd. If he’s too much like Adam, nobody can tell you how you personally quit acting like Eve. Somehow you work it out with God dynamically to leave Him room to work without just letting things rot. The most difficult part is that part of the Fall includes our sense of limitations in time and space, not something found in the Garden. Everything is either too fast or too slow and we are never in quite the right place, it seems. That’s part of the curse on both sexes, but don’t get caught up in trying to dominate your man. That’s just a snare that keeps you outside the Garden. You can’t do it for him and you surely can’t do God’s job.

But God will most surely use your surrendered life, Sisters. Somewhere in that tangled mess, He will bring you His answer at His time and place. Returning to the Garden is hardly a single step. It’s your whole lifelong struggle. That Flaming Sword has a lot of work to do carving off the sin from both of you.

Don’t assume traditional roles are the only ones God will bless. Some men are far better at cooking and cleaning than any woman they’ll likely meet. By the same token, efficiency may not be the issue. If you know beyond all doubt your income will always be higher than your man’s, bless the Lord but don’t use it to eviscerate his manhood. The two shall become one and God alone tells them how it must be.

While we’d rather not talk about it, there is that chance your marriage was dead when it started, and you have some serious pain ahead of you. God is not legalistic about divorce, but it’s pretty obvious Jesus taught us to take the marriage commitment seriously. I won’t pretend to lock you up with someone who resists redemption, but whatever comes from God’s work, a bad marriage makes our ordinary suffering more like crucifixion than it really has to be.

Guys, the burden of moving forward is on us. For whatever reasons, God chose us to do the work of discerning the broader mission of our lives, and that includes anyone who shares life with us. We have the mission, and if we leave it to the ladies, things might not come out as God intended. It’s not her job to search the horizon for signs of God’s chosen path, nor to recognize and deal with enemies, so stop dumping so much crap on her.

Get off your duff, Brothers. Decide and act.

About Ed Hurst

Avid cyclist, Disabled Veteran, Bible History teacher, and wannabe writer; retired.
This entry was posted in eldercraft and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Of Marriage and Curses

  1. wildcucumber says:

    Hello, Ed. your writing always leaves me thinking. First how well you can articulate a thought and flesh it out to a conclusion. Then, you should be highly paid for your wisdom, if not presently then in the other place, may rewards be heaped upon you. Just wondering what your take on What the fruit of knowledge actually was, or was it just an allegory? (is that the right term? I get mixed up with metaphor)
    Paul (of Paul and Christine)


  2. Ed Hurst says:

    Thanks. These days “allegory” carries the wrong baggage, implying something simpler than a metaphor. That’s why I stick with the term “parable” — symbolism is far more important than facts when the narrative was not meant to be taken literally. The Forbidden Fruit represents the choice to disconnect from revelation, to place human reason in the executive role. Of course, since pure reason is not quite possible, it means a lot of other junk thrown in with it. The term “Knowledge of Good and Evil” emphasizes the capacity to judge what is good and evil without reference to God’s moral character.


  3. Paul says:

    Yes, nicely said, thank you


  4. Pingback: What is a Curse? | Σ Frame

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.