Then to Adam God said, "Because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree about which I commanded you, saying, 'You shall not eat from it'; cursed is the ground because of you. In toil you will eat of it all the days of your life.
Both thorns and thistles it shall grow for you; and you will eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your face you will eat bread, till you return to the ground, because from it you were taken.
For you are dust, and to dust you shall return."
For anyone wondering why the planet on which we live in does not hum along in perfect harmony (as beautiful and majestic as it still is), this statement from the lips of the Creator deserves serious attention, an investment of unhurried reflection. Especially God’s declaration, “cursed is the ground because of you.”
Genesis (“beginnings”) unveils a vast array of consequential starts. Our omnipotent Creator fashions a universe, the home for his crowning creation: a male (Adam) and a female (Eve). Everything provided bore the quality assurance stamp of God’s “very good.” Everything designed to work well, cooperatively, harmoniously. The first couple, and all of their offspring, need only to use and develop God’s gifts in alignment with simple obedience. One obeying required — “Eat not from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil” (Gen. 2:17). Everything else was available. Everything.
Plain, willful disobedience, encouraged by deception appealing to pride, marred the endowment. Adam chose to use his freedom for disobedience, ushering the infection of sin, and God’s promised judgment imposed the forewarned death penalty on everything. Men would find living a chasing after wind (cf. Ecclesiastes). The joyful work of making a living degenerated into a sweat-producing toil in ways, then and today, that are without number.
(Rom 8:20) For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly… so much of our tough stuff arises from a Divine judgment within the physics of the creation itself, sourced in man’s moral mutiny. A daily, every-moment reminder that disregarding God’s word always makes mere living much harder than it needed to be.