This is the Gospel: Day 3

Sin’s False Promise

by

Today's Text: Genesis 2:15-3:24, Romans 1:18-32, Romans 3:23, Isaiah 64:6-7, Romans 6:23

My kids love balloons. Love them. And since becoming a parent, I have learned to despise them.

Lucky for them and unlucky for me, the grocery store nearest our house rewards each child who rolls past the checkout lane with a balloon for their excellent (or terrible) behavior.

I have two children, and inevitably, one balloon always makes a break for it in the parking lot.

Somewhere between the cart corral and the car seats, one balloononly onewill see its opportunity and slip free. All I can do is watch, helpless, as it floats up, up, up—tail waving goodbye and good luck as it disappears into the sky.

Good luck indeed. One child is devastated and one is delighted. And then? They turn on each other. Greed overcomes them and all they can think about is the one thing they cannot have. By the time we pull into the driveway (four minutes later), fists have been wielded, cruel words have been exchanged, tears have been shed (I’m not saying whose), consequences have been made clear, and whatever affection they once shared for each other is long forgotten—discarded for the affection of self.

One such scene occurred in our home last week, and the very next day I came upon the coveted balloon hovering hesitantly just above the dining room floor— forgotten, deflated, and worthless.

This is what sin doesit lies. It promises to be shiny and colorful and inflated with excitement forever. It promises to be worth it. Sin tells us that God wants to keep the good stuff from us—that what we want matters more than what He has for us (Genesis 3:4-5).

In Eden, God told Adam, “You may surely eat of the every tree of the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die” (Genesis 2:16-17). Man had supremacy over all of the earth, but this exclusion—this one law—caused Adam to doubt God’s motives.

Man and woman sinned the first sin (Genesis 3:6-7), and for the first time in the history of the world, we felt shame. The lie of sin—that we know what’s best for us and must attain it on our own, apart from God—failed to deliver, and the original glory of man and Eden was lost (Genesis 3:8-21). God’s tender warning that “you shall surely die” was true for them then, and is true for us today.

Sin wasn’t worth it. It never is.

“The wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23). “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). Adam was guilty. Eve was guilty. You and I and your sister and your neighbor and your grandmother and your kids and your friend and your enemy—we are all guilty. When held to the loving and just standard of our holy God, we all deserve death.

The human race is guilty because of Adam’s sin. And each one of us is guilty too because of our own sins. Daily, hourly, even moment to moment, we believe the lie that God’s law is holding us back and that we know better. And just as we scramble to act (or think, or fail to act), the shimmer tarnishes and the balloon deflates. What we thought we needed—what caused us to act outside of God’s law—is in the discard pile by sunrise the next morning.

Through Adam’s sin we are all cursed, all born with a nature of sin and a sentence of death.

But friends, keep reading! There is more! Here is a glorious hint:

“For if by the transgression of the one, death reigned through the one, much more those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.”
- Romans 5:17 NASB

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  • Hope things are better. Praying.

  • I really needed to hear this today. If you guys read these comments and can keep me in your prayers. Satan has been messing with me the past couple of days. Can you say a few extra prayers for me that he leaves me alone and I can find peace in the word and knowing the gospel? My heart and mind need it. Typically I find answers and relax when I read my bible. But I’ve just been confused not paying attention to what I read even if I am trying really hard. My mind keeps wandering away from the Lord and I’m struggling to get back to where I want and need to be. Thank you so much, ladies.

  • Truly a great reminder that though sin may look like fun it never lasts and following the ways of God will eventually lead us to the greatest reward there is!

  • Stephanie

    I needed this, I really love this app it’s helping me commit to god more wherever I am. I’m understanding the Bible more as well with the help of everyone’s questions/comments. Love it!!! God is good.

  • Carolina Pereira

    Hi, Care!! I’m sorry if what I’m about to say doesn’t satisfy your qustions, but I think that it’s not about making sense. It’s about obedience. You see, Adam and Eve had free will, just like the angels. God wanted them to obbey Him not because it made sense, but because He is God. I think their sin is more about vanity and wrong desires. The woman listened to her desires insted of listening to God’s command. Her heart was in the wrong place. She desired a wisdom that was not meant for her to have.

    I don’t think I’m capable of explaining why God would put that tree right in the middle of the garden. But I hold on to the assurance that God had a plan for humanity. That was the chosen way for Him to be more glorified. I just thank Him for everything that I can’t understand now and praise Him for His grace upon us and for Christ.
    It’s hard, but God is faithful even when we’re not.

    I hope it helps you. Sorry for my bad english, sister. I’m from Brazil!! I love you.

    So thankful for these comments.

  • This so embarrassing! But I want to understand so here I go: I’m am having trouble understanding what made eating from the tree a sin. I know that God told them not to, and that alone would make it wrong. But what made God deem it a sin? It would only reveal to them good vs. evil, right? Wouldn’t that be helpful? The 10 commandments all make sense to me because it’s obvious that you should not kill, lie, covet,…etc. But eating from a tree is not something I would already assume is morally wrong. So is this tree a metaphor for sin in general? And if it is, was Eve expected to consciously think of her life as a parable to avoid the sin of eating the fruit? Also, why would God create the tree when it’s wrong to eat from it?

    PLEASE don’t get me wrong, it is not my intent to be disrespectful or mock what I do not understand. I am not doubting God and the scriptures; and I really did LOVE the balloon analogy. I just want to understand and grow. I may just be overthinking it. Can anyone explain? Thanks :)

    • Stefany Mack

      I agree with Carolina- it’s about obedience. The Bible tells us to submit to God- not try to put ourselves in his place- we are to go be with him for eternity and will answer for our sins when we get there. To me, it’s not just about that eating from the tree is wrong, or to decide which sins are better or worse than others- because they’re all sin. To me, the tree is on display in the middle of the garden because that makes it appealing and tempting and seem important. This- for me- can be a metaphor for false idols and whatever they may be, they’re often on display right in the middle of our own ‘garden”/life- but just because they’re tempting and beautiful and accessible, doesn’t mean we ‘eat’ from them. Obedience is a hard thing because we want control/ but the truth is, God has already been and carved the path, and He’s always in control. It’s HIS will, not mine- and I frequently remind myself of that when I want to question why something happened. I appreciate your questions because they made me think and look deeper into the passages as well. God bless

  • What a great connection with the balloon!

  • Sin does seem shiny and nice, but it never fills us with what we thought we wanted or needed. Only God knows what we truly need and He is the only One who can give it to us.

  • I love the ballon analogy it was a very cool way to put it

  • love the balloon analogy!!

  • I’ve listened to and read these passages my entire life and I think differently about it now as an adult in the middle of my life. I’ve never thought before today what would have been in the world if Adam and Eve had chosen to obey and refuse temptation….

  • Mari! i’ve felt that same “dryness” in just blankly reading my bible and waiting for some holy angel and epiphany to come… but our pastor just gave an amazing sermon about just this! it’s called After The Party at flatirons community church. Scott talks about digging rivers in the sand so when the rains do come the water has a place to run… so keep reading! the blessings will come!

  • I am having trouble with reading me bible. When I read I feel nothing at all. What does this mean? Can anyone help.

    • Tara Elease

      Hey Mari! I’ve been where you are! Sometimes when reading God’s Word, we feel nothing. I but I’ve learned that faith isn’t reliant on feeling. I don’t instantly feel more enlightened or spiritually mature when I first read a passage. But I have noticed a difference in my actions and thoughts when I consistently read the Bible. It’s totally normal to feel nothing when you read the Bible, but continue to read, dear Sister! :)

    • Mallorie

      I couldn’t agree more with Tara. Sometimes… it’s our act of obedience in continuing to dive into the word that is what God wants from us. Maybe God’s just seeking your faithfulness as He prepares your heart &/or mind for more.

      • Emily

        This was a great read! We can be so blinded by sin. After reading these I love writing down a reflection to how it relates to my life & a prayer to go along with it. It is great to reflect with these readings.

  • Sometimes it’s weird to even imagine a world where our eyes were not opened to good and evil and Adam and Eve didn’t eat from the tree. Just a random thought, anyways….

    Sin today covers our life, everywhere we look we can and even are tempted. But God gives us His word to fight off those temptations. Do we know it well enough to use to fight it off?

  • How many times, when I pray for Gods Word to speak to my heart, and then open His Word and BAM! Just what I needed to hear. I pray you are all experiencing this too! God is SO faithful.

  • I am curious as to why God had a tree of good and evil. Why did he even have that temptation in the first place? I’ve been a Christian all my life and know without a doubt, that there is a God, but sometimes scripture still stumps me.
    Any thoughts? Or knowledge on this?

    • Megan Krumpelman

      I believe it has to do with free will and learning to trust God, but it is an interesting question to think about.

    • Mykia C

      Honestly, I think it has something to do with God offering free will but also using their obedience as a measurement of love and a test of faithfulness. God wasn’t going to force them or alter something in them to make them love Him. It was obvious that God loved Adam and Eve. Whether they fully understood it or not their job was to follow the law and glorify God. A good point that was brought to attention not too long ago is that it’s not like God gave them all of these shriveled up and withered trees and then set the tree of knowledge of good and evil apart as a better looking healthy tree. They had other great trees to eat from but chose to disobey God.

  • C.S. Lewis has made a comparison to this a couple times with reference to a child who prefers to stay living in the slums, playing in mud and rejects a vacation to the ocean. The boy doesn’t understand the concept of the ocean or what sailing or vacationing there would be like, and has just passed up something so pleasurable merely because he chooses the lesser to satisfy rather than what is the greatest offer. He allows himself to be happy with far too little.

  • Just what I needed today…not a reminder of my depravity (I know that one too well), but a reminder of the depth and breadth of God’s love for me.

  • This is so true… All too often I think I know best, when I do not at all. We are always thinking we know best and then we end up sinning. I need to trust God, for he has a better plan for me than I could ever imagine. I just need to be patient and trust..

  • what a beautiful devotional! His grace is indescribable

  • “If Adam, a human, had this much of an effect on our lives, think about the effect Jesus Christ has on us!”

  • This devotion really helps you to understand the cost of sin and how it effects not just you, but others as well. What great news that God’s grace covers our sins!

  • Tabitha

    This is a really great devotional!! I love every day of this study!

  • Andrea P

    Romans 1:24-32 has convicted me this morning. What is one to do when they have a friend who is gay? Verse 32 really hit my heart hard. Am I condoning his behavior by just being his friend?

    • Nicole

      I had the same question so I asked a friend…
      “Loving someone and approving of their decisions is different. We are called to love all our neighbors even the sinners, doesn’t matter what their sin is.” Look up Mark 2:17, Jesus hung out with the sinners. Because they were the ones who needed him most. “This world has a skewed idea of tolerance. Tolerance to this world means that other people are right, even if it compromises your beliefs. When it’s really just accepting that they believe what they want. We can’t hold a non-Christian accountable to not sin when they don’t even count it as sinning.” So no you’re not condoning his behavior by being a friend, but if you were to encourage those behaviors that would be different.

      • Andrea P

        Thank you! That explanation is very helpful . ❤️

      • Kari

        All I know for sure is that Christ is beautiful and loving. And that he called us to love. So that’s what I do. I love everyone. Gay, straight, Mexican, black, white. Don’t matter. I love ya.

  • This was great!

  • I loved your parallel between the balloon and sin. It gave a great visual reminder of sin.

    I also enjoyed reading about how we are all guilty of sin. It got me thinking about the difference between knowing we are guilty and feeling guilty. I often feel like I need to feel guilty of my sin because I know it is there. Instead of focusing on that, I need to focus on Christ’s message of redemption through his mercy and grace.

  • It’s amazing how I continue to fall for the lie of sin over and over. The minute my guard is down, I lose sight of the truth and fall into the trap of my own will and sinful nature. I am so undeserving, but the power and love of our Father is so strong that it makes the grasp of sin look like nothing. Thank you so much Lord.

  • Really needed this today!

  • Sin is never worth it! Through this devotional, as we draw closer to God and know Him deeper, I
    Pray that He through the Holy Spirit helps us to trust him better and see sin for what it really is- a lie!

  • I fell for this lie so many times. Lord help me to rest in the knowledge that You know best for my life because You are my creator & loving father. You knew me before I was born and had plans for me even then. Help me to not be deceived by the lie of sin. Open my eyes to Your truth! I love & trust you.

  • Kiersten Nicole

    Dear Lord,

    help me see the shiny balloons in my life for what they are… Disappointing sacks of air. Help me remember that forgoing the balloon frees up my time and energy to pursue your plan. Don’t let me continually be distracted by the glamour and momentary excitement sin offers, but instead let me find motivation and passion for the pursuit of what my future holds in you…

    Help me let go of my balloons.

  • I needed this tonight. I’m struggling with my sin so much more than I have before. I am trying so hard to shake the lie that my sins are worth it. I know that Jesus is worth so much more than my bad decisions. But I receive satisfaction in the moment with sin and God is so faithful, yet so difficult for me to connect with when I need him most.
    Where are you Jesus? Break me if that’s what I need to be put back together. I need you to be loud. Please get my attention.

    • Lauren

      I felt this way for the longest time. Unless you put God at the very center of your life, realizing He is the most important thing and being willing, ready, and active in doing whatever it takes to pursue him FIRST, Satan will continue to lure you into this trap of sin, he will take every chance he gets- every second you lose sight of God. Satan is strangling you with this sin because he doesn’t want to see what you can do when you are empowered by God and the Holy Spirit. He knows if he ever lets you go he will be crushed.

  • “The wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23). “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). I am having trouble with this passage. This devotional has been very difficult for me any suggestions on how to make this passage a little easier to interpret?

    • Kay

      Karina, we have all sinned at some point in our lives – malicious thoughts, gossiping, lying, or maybe even something greater like stealing. And the wages of sin is death. Not that God will strike us down at any given moment – but that sinning prevents us from obtaining eternal life AFTER death. BUT the gospel tells us that by the grace of God and through the ultimate sacrifice of Jesus Christ we are given a chance to repent! A chance to redeem ourselves and leave behind a sinful life for a life of righteousness! Only after admitting that we are sinners, believing that Jesus died for us and his death paid the penalty for our sins, and confessing that Jesus is Lord, we are forgiven our sins and will enjoy the free gift of eternal life. Hope this helps!

  • Thank you Lord for eternal life❤️

  • Romans 3:23 : “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” This verse just reminds us how unworthy we are of God yet how much we need him in our lives. We are nothing without him.

  • Christine

    As believers… When we sin, We feel shame.
    -Genesis 3:8-11 says Adam and Eve were naked and ashamed, so they hid from God.
    -Are you hiding today?
    Repent Sisters and turn to Jesus!

    “Jesus paid it all, all to him I owe. Sin had left a crimson stain, He washed it white as snow”

  • Bridgette

    I love how God says, “do not even touch the apple.” So many times do we think we’re being obedient to God because we are not “devouring” “our Apple”. God doesn’t even want us to TOUCH IT! Let us humbly go before Him and ask what is in our lives that He wouldn’t want us to even have a feel for. What knowledge are we “touching upon” that God doesn’t want us to know, what are we still keeping – just a little? Let us all pray this prayer and continue to walk in obedience to God.

    • Kristine

      Amen, sister. Such a good bit of truth to meditate on throughout the day. Thank you!

  • Isabella

    ****Being a teenager in high school there are very many temptations, but no matter your age I think sin will always be something to deal with and something you have to try your best to stay away from. The balloon analogy really have me a new perspective on sin and opened my eyes, sin really does promise to be all “shiny and colorful and inflated with excitement forever” but that’s where you have to think before you act because we all know that it’s not going to stay that way, it’s only going to look good at the beginning and once you realize what you’ve done you know it’s not worth it. No matter how many mistakes we make God will love us, but we have to share the word of God and praise so that we can try our hardest to be the best we can be.

    • Kristine

      High school is hard for girls who are believers and followers of Christ. I pray for your strength against temptation and that you may be a light to others on your campus. I am in college and I can totally relate! Love to you, sister!

  • Isabella

    “Being an image-bearer is our greatest call” I believe this is one of the most important things I need to be working on but I do think this is very true! I also need to appreciate everything God created including myself. I know this plan will be very good for me.

    I know what you mean I am also working on this too, but I think this plan can really help!

    Being a teenager in high school there are very many temptations, but no matter your age I think sin will always be something to deal with and something you have to try your best to stay away from. The balloon analogy really have me a new perspective on sin and opened my eyes, sin really does promise to be all “shiny and colorful and inflated with excitement forever” but that’s where you have to think before you act because we all know that it’s not going to stay that way, it’s only going to look good at the beginning and once you realize what you’ve done you know it’s not worth it. No matter how many mistakes we make God will love us, but we have to share the word of God and praise so that we can try our hardest to be the best we can be.

  • Rebecca Doss

    I was thinking about how the first sin must have pained God as I was reading this today. You can almost see how much He loves Adam as He’s bringing him the animals and making Eve for him. Then He has to speak death over His children and His heart must break. But then I was thinking about Easter and how He destroyed Himself so He could save us, and how that destruction led to life, and I’m just struck by how Easter is such a complete change in the story. Death becomes life, man is restored to God, and everything is turned upside down!

  • This was perfect for me today. I’m in such a. spiritual rut and I need to turn back to God. Please pray for me.

  • Caroline

    This is so true! I just had this happen to me today! Sin makes me think that it’s okay and then comes back to bite me and convict! SIN NEVER WORKS OUT!

  • Kaitlyn Henke

    *God and time and time again he runs right back to save us. How great is He?!

  • Kaitlyn Henke

    The devil speaks to us in our own voices to turn away from Gos and time and time again to

  • Eternal life in Christ? Doesn’t get any better than that!

  • Loved reading this tonight. I just became a mom to our beautiful and perfect daughter. And since giving birth to her it’s been such a challenge to find the balance between caring for myself to recover from labor and delivery androgyny my husband and caring for her. It’s terrifying how often and deeply I am tempted to be selfish during this time, which is certainly just a symptom of this deeply rooted brokenness. In all of this it is easy to get wrapped up trying to be perfect as well, and working hard to check all the boxes in order to do so. Rather, I should be trusting Gods faithfulness, security, and strength.

  • Kimberly

    Look at the end of Genesis 3.. God punished them for their sin but he still loved them and provided clothes for them. He covered their sin because he loves them. Even when we sin we get punished but God still loves and provides for us

  • I have read these verses many times before. Being a Young Life leader, you share these with high school kids when sharing the gospel through our club talks. But reading them today and placing myself in that balloon analogy helped me humbly look at myself and my sinful state. I am so thankful that this is not the end. God did not leave us in our helpless state.

  • Sarah McGrady

    the ballon and child analogy really helped put into perspective.

  • This was such a good thing for me to read today. The balloon analogy reminded me of something else. Ever since I was little I’ve wanted a violin. Even though I had a piano, then got a xylophone and guitar and ukulele, I still wanted more. That beautiful glossy violin. Well, last year I wanted it so badly, I thought about it a lot and even though I don’t usually want things, I dreamed about it all the time. So finally we found a cheaper violin and bought it. When I got it I was thrilled, but with time it’s value faded in my eyes. I still practice it but it’s not the same. That’s how sin is, it seems so appealing, and we dream about it and long for it. But when we get it, we soon become dissatisfied and regret we’d done it in the first place.

  • The balloon analogy: YESSSS. It illustrates what sin is so well. It helped me to understand the Gospel so much more. I can’t thank Jesus enough for what he did on the cross. Praise Him always.

  • Valencia

    Now I am able to look at this scriptures in such as better aspect.

  • I love how she describes sin as colorful and shiny but in the end it’s not worth it something I grew up hearing my mother say is that I was attracted to the sparkly things “fools gold” something that looks pretty but has no real value.

  • Love this read! So, does this mean humans were created doubtful?

    • Nadja

      No. We were not created doubtful. The serpent put in their heads that maybe God was keeping something from them and when they allowed that idea to enter their mind, the sequence led them to eating the forbidden fruit.

      • Denise

        Its a daily battle even I myself battling but we cannot let that idea engrain itself in our minds.

  • crystalclear1123

    I love the “it’s never worth it.” we are so focused in ourselves that we blow the thing way out of proportion.

  • Spunkybkworm

    Oh balloons!!! And sin as prioritizing OUR reason/logic/desires over the perfect will of God — the doing or NOT doing…. Big yep. And the thing that struck me with this reading was the consequences. Yes, Jesús has set us right spiritually, but until He returns to renew Earth we still have poisonous snakes, painful birth, male chauvanism and weeds. Science’s laws tell us that for every action there is a reaction….

  • Bethanne

    Love the analogy with the balloons, great read this morning!

  • What Bible translation was used on the scripture readings?

  • Julia Ponath

    It’s one thing to have a knowledge of God, and of his love and mercy, and goodness… And another thing entirely to just dwell in that love and experience his abundant grace. I pray that I might fully experience and understand what this gospel looks like daily. Seeking and understanding with my heart and not just my head.

    • Lonicia

      Me too! That’s an excellent way to describe exactly how I’ve been feeling – thank you Julia

  • It’s so interesting how we, just like Adam and Eve, try to HIDE from God when sin. That’s what perpetuates shame and guilt. Something I’ve taken with me from a sermon a few years ago is how powerful it can be to pray and repent IMMEDIATELY after we fall short. Instead of hiding or justifying our actions, how would things change if we turned to the Lord and reached for His hand right away?

    • Kayla

      I love this! I find that many people, I am also guilty of this, don’t WANT to trust that God forgives us even after we sin. Laura, I think that immediately seeking the Lord for forgiveness is a great practice. He already knows, so why not put our pride aside and reach out to Him.

  • I’m curious as to why God placed a cherubim with a flaming sword in front of the Tree of Life AFTER Adam and Eve sinned. . I mean, the damage was done; we were all destined to be sinful from the moment they ate the fruit of that forbidden tree so why have a guard at the tree afterwards??

    • Rachel Midgett

      Adam and Eve ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, not from the tree of life. So in order to keep them from living forever in this sinful state (because honestly, when given the chance to do good or evil, people choose evil) the Lord appointed the cherubim to guard the tree of life. It was for their own good that he did it. Hope that helped!

  • I fall for sin so much sometime I feel like how could God ever forgive me? But I love getting into his word and reading she reads truth to remind me that he does forgive me and does love me!

    • Kamimenard

      Same here. I always fall for sin and even though I know its wrong I do it anyway. But this is a reminder of God’s grace to us. No matter how much we sin, he stands with his arms wide open for us to run back to him. Its so hard to understand why he forgives us like he does but it is such a blessing and shows his grace and love for us. ❤️

  • In retrospect, I can always see why I shouldn’t done something or said something. It’s amazing how easily we fall for sin in the moment. It’s incredible though that through all the sin, God is there watching and forgiving us. Through this new journey with God I am consciously trying to make the choice God has destined for me, but it’s difficult more times than not.

  • Harriet Russell

    The analogy with the balloon is perfect! Sin always looks shiny and exciting but in reality following God is ALWAYS the best option

  • What I find amazing is how we all so easily fall for what we KNOW is a lie! We all know what God wants, what is expected of us and that God’s way is best and yet we still choose to believe the lie time and time again!!!

  • Kesha Kikaya

    Wow, it’s so true! I can’t even count how many times I fall for Satans lies and twists! It seems true buts it’s not and sin always pushes you further for Christ. Sins lies saying you’re missing out if you follow Gods law but you’re not , we gain more when we are moving closer to Gods promises and purpose for our lives. When we follow Christ we are following the instructions the Creator made us for which the very best ever. Through grace we have been given a second chance. Amen!

  • Wow. I realize that I have been so full of pride, not admitting my sins to myself but crediting my lack of discipline to a busy schedule. Not only is sin shiny and exciting, it distracts and prevents you from seeing your own brokenness and need for a savior. I had a good friend challenge me to daily devotions yesterday and here I am seeking truth and feeling so raw but not as alone as I thought I would feel.

  • Wow. That was perfect! Thank you!

  • This is all so true. Sin so easily catches you and it takes a lot of strength and a lot of help from God to get out of its clutches.
    There is something that I heard that was (and still is) extremely inspiring and helpful to me when my biggest sins stare me in the face : ‘It’s not about STOPPING, it’s about STARTING.’
    It isn’t about trying to STOP yourself from sinning; it’s about STARTING your relationship with God and getting closer to Him.
    For the longest time I would see my sins, make it my goal to stop doing them, fail, and then revert back to my old ways wondering why It didn’t work that time. The problem was that I wasn’t trying to grow in my faith and get closer to God. Without His help, this won’t be a winning battle. But once He is your focus, anything is possible.

  • Hannah Laskey

    “That’s what sin does—it lies. It promises to be shiny and colorful and inflated with excitement forever.” So FREAKING true. I am too easily pleased. I am too easily enticed by the allure of sin. It is a shiny new toy that claims to fulfill me, but it never, ever, ever does.

  • Thank you for that great reminder :)

  • What a beautiful reminder on how deadly sin is. It is scary to think how quickly my heart, mind, words, and actions lead to sin but it is even more humbling that our Sovereign Lord forgives so quickly and easily. All he looks for is repentance. Wow!

  • Needed this. Sin can seem so easy and okay, but it’s not. It’s a cover up. Just obey by the Lord and you shall have eternal life!

  • Iris Griffin

    Amen!

  • Kenzie Feuerbach

    I love that “not acting upon it” is also used here. There are so many things we shouldn’t do and we focus so heavily on those, but there are also times where we SHOULD do something and we sit back because it may be an inconvenience to us to help that person, or our schedule is too hectic and you don’t have time to sit with that friend who may just need someone to be present, or it would just be “too hard” to break up with that boyfriend who is not leading us the way Christ leads the church. These are also sins, and I’m being called out because I am guilty. But praises that we have grace in our Lord, and that he continues to make us new and like him every day!

  • Love reading these

  • Why do we “fall” for it? Why do we find ourselves believing sin is worth it? Satan is crafty, yall! I love love love the scripture referenced in this. In Genesis 3 satan twists the Lord’s words into a pleasing and desirable gain. Verse 1 shows how evil questions God’s word (Did God really say?), verse 4 shows evil then denies God’s word (You will not certainly die), and verse 5 shows evil then changing God’s word (You will be like God). We have to see this happening. The best way to protect ourselves from the false promises of sin is through God’s word and through prayer! Sin is never worth it. I pray I can always see the love behind God’s law and not look to my own selfish opinion that allows satan to twist God’s words. I pray we don’t fall into the trap of “thinking its not worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God” (Romans 1:28). You are more than worthwhile, Jesus!

    Bless all the women giving their time to learn your word with these studies, God!!!!!

  • I love the reminder that sin lies. “Sin promises to be worth it… Sin tells us that God wants to keep the good stuff from us- That what we want for us matters more than what He has for us.” When in fact, we see in the verses here that that is a direct lie. In Genesis 3:18-21, we see that God not only cares to look and notice what is not good and that has to do with Adam (he sees that Adam is alone and it is “not good”) but He also goes on to Make for Adam (in Hebrew it’s “built”) that which would be perfect for him out of impossible means! God makes a way for something good to come to Adam out of ways Adam could have never thought of and could not have made on his own human efforts. God will bring good in His own timing and own perfectly beautiful way, just because He wants to and to bring Him glory. He is a loving Father and a perfectly sovereign and almighty God. Trying to do my own thing and in doing so sinning against Him, just seems stupid in light of that truth. Such a beautiful reminder. Thanks, SRT!

  • Love this balloon comparison. Spot on accurate.

  • Nadia Aldaco

    thank you Jesus for redemption. This passage reminds me to seek the eternal things, things that do not perish, unlike the temporary things of this life.

  • Betsy Cooley

    The balloon analogy is so good!!

  • Kristina Johnson

    I really enjoyed the part of how sin is seen as this exciting thing to always last yet sin is the first thing to go in life. Yet I used to crave for it because of those few seconds I thought I felt good about myself, yet as I get older I see that the only things that last forever are the things that God gives us because they are eternal and I finally feel like I am finding peace with gratification that last a lifetime and not instant gratification that last a very short time

  • Listening to the Lords still small voice will keep us from sinning in ways that we know we shouldn’t be. He is faithful and good!

  • Angie Jordan

    I wonder why God took one of the man’s ribs to make woman? Why didn’t he just make her from the dust like he made man?

    • Kristina Johnson

      God took apart of Adams rib because he wanted his mate to be part of him, giving the definition to woman. Also it makes man and woman one because they are bound by more than just a title but are always spiritual and physically connected.Making Eve from dust would make them both heads of the table in a way. You see women in the bible are supposed to be submissive to their husbands yet we are a vital part to a man because without there would be no procreation for one and we secretly run the world and help men succeed as we succeed ;)

  • All the stuff on the news about PP is beginning to burrow into my heart and cause malice against the organization. I understand we should have righteous anger however my anger has moved from righteous to wrathful anger. I must remember all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. I may not be doing what they are doing however I must remember I still have my own sin to deal with. They are evil people they need prayer, I pray that they realize what they are doing and run far away straight into the arms of God and stop this genocide!

    • Erin Nausin

      Its so heartbreaking, I know. Having a daughter now myself I can’t imagine what it would be like if we had said no to her. We have to keep in mind that these are not evil people, but they are children of God who have fallen into a very broken system, like we all have. I’m with you in praying that God would move in big ways for them and that they’d find a new reality in Him.

  • I really appreciated this day’s study. So often I do something that looks so good, but later have so much regret. The balloon analogy is so accurate. I’m so thankful for promises, and forgiveness, and the hope of a better future.

  • Larisse Millora

    We have a loving Father!!!❤

  • Sarah Ann

    Thank you for writing what you wrote! It’s currently 1:40am where I am, & I jut got done committing a sin that I am stuck in these past couple days.. & this is exactly what I needed to read. Thank you, thank you! God works in amazing ways.

  • Thank you Jesus for saving us sinners. Yes, we are born with a sinful nature. To say otherwise is to contradict God’s Word and must be supported by the Word. Read Romans 5:12, 18. Psalm 51:5 , 1 Corinthians 15:22, Romans 3:23 to name a few.

  • Jennifer

    although I did like some aspects of the devotional, I don’t agree with some of it. YES Adam and Eve brought sin into the world but WE ARE NOT born with the nature to sin, that contradicts God’s word. We are born and everything around us encourages sinful nature which we grow into. God wouldn’t create us to sin, we sin cause we’re weak and in this day and age you can’t escape sin.

    • Rachel

      We ARE born with a sinful nature. Look at NN’s references, they’re all what I was going to recommend. Have you ever seen a toddler who had never seen television and violence, coming from a good home and being the first child, look at their parent with a mischievous look in their eye right before doing something naughty? You said we are weak, and you are right – we are born weak and with a nature to sin.

    • Naomi Watkins

      We are born with a sin nature. We can’t blame our messing up on things around us and making excuses. That defeats the whole purpose of Jesus dying on the cross and us asking him to save us. He doesn’t save us from our excuses, he saves us from our own sinful hearts.

  • This has been such a consistent theme in my life lately. It has to be the hand of God, that is the only way to describe it. I keep encountering situations where I put my faith in circumstances or hope for something intensely with the misconception that I need it, then am denied what I thought I needed, only to get something better; something I could have never imagined. And all the while, I have had this nagging feeling, or desire, to grow closer to Christ and study my bible more. For example, I was expecting extra money from my financial aid, to be able to fix my car and take care of some debt/things needed. But the number of classes I have to take and the cost of books and labs totally wiped it out. And you know what? I was disappointed, but it taught me that I can’t put my faith in things like that – I need to be keeping my eyes on Christ and trusting that He died on that cross for us and He even cares for the sparrow, so He will care for us. Even though money is tight, there is always providential provision. I encountered a possessed man in Target last week, and the only way I was able to fall asleep that night was repeating in my mind, “God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of love, and power, and a sound mind”. This was a very scary experience, but you know what? That was a wake up call. Too often we are lulled into a passive complacency that is very dangerous and very good to the enemy. I thank God for that experience because it pointed a finger back to Christ and the real purpose of I’m here. Not for these fleeting worldly things, that I often get too focused on, but to prepare for eternity in Heaven, praising our Savior, and discipling my children to love Christ too. We oftentimes think we know what is best for us and make elaborate plans, only for God to work in our lives, crumble our plans, only to lead us down a much different, yet, much richer and blessed path of life. No, I’m not living the life I thought I’d be living five years ago, but I’m so much more richly blessed than I ever could have imagined and I wouldn’t have it any other way. So thankful for She Reads Truth and those sweet reminders to me. God is definitely working through you to speak to your readers!

  • Love this passage of truth! Thankful for the truth of our sinful nature, Satan’s lies about sin, and God’s amazing and abounding grace that surpasses them both!

  • Help me pray for restoration. Amen.

  • Today’s reading was all so good but this part really caught my eye . “Sin tells us that God wants to keep the good stuff from us—that what we want matters more than what He has for us (Genesis 3:4-5)” often we settle for less thinking it’s the best thing that came our way when really God has so much more in store for us

    • Heather

      Thanks Tori. You are right on.

    • Elena

      Yes! That struck me too. “What we want matters MORE than what He has for us” so often I want to believe my plan is somehow better and in that i’m turning from Him instead of To Him

  • Katie Sue

    Thank you, Kayla!! :) that was helpful. I’ve been praying a lot about it and I think he is revealing his love for me and giving me a peace about it!!

  • Praying for you, Katie Sue! I know it’s hard in this performance based world to understand that. Here’s a verse that might help: James 2:10. Everyone of us has failed. That’s why salvation is called a gift- we don’t earn it. His love is limitless. I pray the Holy Spirit will help you to grow in understanding of that… And me too! :)

  • Katie Sue

    This is such a hard concept to grasp. I just feel so unworthy all the time I don’t understand how he could actually love me that much! I believe that he saves and that he saves others I just feel so much worse than everyone else

  • Jessica Bethel

    It’s so interesting to me that God even from the first sin to now, HE comes after us!

  • I’m having a really tough time because I lied to my parents. I don’t normally lie, and I don’t even know why I did. When I told my dad he just started crying and said that I broke his heart. I just always seem to keep messing up and I keep choosing to do the wrong thing. I just need for y’all to pray for me.

    • Virginia

      Praying for you! We all need grace every day! Don’t let satan allow your sin to hold you down and make you feel guilty. Take your sin before the Lord and realize you are forgiven and made new. He views you as spotless. Chin up, you are His!

    • Shelby

      Praying for you ☺️

    • Tori

      I will definitely keep you in my prayers

  • Andie Walton

    It is free people. Nothing is free. Awe pay for water, for air, and our king is giving this to us for free! I pray everyday that people in the world wake up, hear the news, and accept this free gift.

  • Ana I am praying for your son. God is capable of amazing things.

  • grocery stores

    A grocery shopping list is one of the smartest and easiest tools you can use to lower your monthly grocery bill as well as significantly cut your
    household stresses.Here are my top 5 ideas for motivating your family to "use the list".

    1. Make it public.
    2. Train.
    3. Help them get the message.
    4. Make an announcement.
    5. Make it a team effort.

  • Please pray for my son who is 25 and lost. I feel trapped and I don't know what to do. I'm asking for your prayers and know that nothing is impossible with God and I will continue to hold on to that truth because it's the only hope I have for my son right now. Thank you so very much and thank SRT for bringing me here to lift me up and to know that I am never alone.

    • Sommer

      Ana-I will pray for your son and for you. I pray the Lord will soften your sons heart, turn it toward Him and draw him to His throne. May you feel comfort and peace as well. Just a bit of hope…my Mom despaired over my older brother for years. He was wandering and making horrible choices and his heart was hardened and twisted. But he has finally come to a true faith in God and I hope that you will be encouraged that even after much despair, your son may yet find Truth. My brother is 44 and it has taken most of his life to get where he is…But God brought him in the fullness of time. May you see this in your son too!

      • Kylee

        Agreeing with you, Sommer, for Ana’s son! And my brother who is 31, we are praying hard for him to turn from terrible life choices that hurt everyone around him. God is good, he is faithful, we will pray without ceasing for our families and I just know things will turn around! Keep praying Ana, He hears you ❤️

    • jojo sutis

      Praying for your son ♡

    • Cortina

      Prayed!

    • Sarah Lahoda

      Ana, I’m praying for your son right now…

    • Taylor

      Praying for your son and you, Ana. God bless you!

  • My kids are forever fighting of the singular ballon only to forget it and let it deflate the next day! But so do I also lust after consumer goods only to get the new “it thing” to quickly then move on to another new Instagram praised it thing!!! Reachel you are a blessed writer by painting a picture with your words! Thank you!

  • Today’s balloon story helped me see that ENVY is the way which I carry out Eve’s original sin. Being jealous of what someone else has is the same as thinking “God is holding out on me” it’s that same as eating the forbidden fruit when God blessed me with so many other trees which are pleasing to the eye and good for food. I pray that God helps me to see the many blessings that he has given me, and to be happy for the joy of others instead of toxically jealous.

    • Ahlaischa

      Amen sister! I have struggled in the same way, you have a prayer partner!

    • Juls

      Thank you for sharing. It is so true for me. I look upon others relationships with envy and desire rather than to the Heavens seeing Gods glory.

  • loverofmysoul

    Great post! However, in God's Kingdom or in Christianity…there is NO such thing as LUCK/LUCKY!

  • Such a true message and awesome reminder that through Christ our free gift is eternal life. I’m want to be full of life!

  • I loved the line “[Sin] promises to be worth it”! It’s so true! It tempts us until we fall and then we are regretful and filled with shame– it was not at all what we imagined. And then even further, “we are all guilty.” It’s so nice to be reminded that not only are we not alone as Christians, but as Christians that continue to struggle with sin. Thank you for putting it into words so concisely! I think this will stick with me and help me to consider my actions!

  • Amy Krause

    I have read Romans countless times and yet somehow missed the power of Romans 6:23! Thank you for the reminder!

  • katherine

    Love you balloon story great laugh to my day off. Its funny cause it so true. I agree with you Laura .Ugh.. Eve is always a reminder to me of the enemy is only here to kill steal and destroy. He never comes at you in his true form. He comes in an image that is most appealing to you and your flesh. Thank you all so much for your post. God Bless you all.

  • ABiGAELLE

    I love it! Roman 1:20-21 is a powerful passage, it allows me to think about my own condition. Tins my first devotional and i’m loving it so far.

  • Brittney

    This is a great lesson for anyone! Sin isn’t worth it! Thanking God for his mercy everyday!

  • Awesome reminder, and I don't know how many times I have had to remind myself that sin isn't worth it. The worst feeling is when you realize that whatever you did, whatever this sin promised you, it is all a lie. I see this through people, those that have not found Christ. Boys will lie to girls and promise them everything, girls will lie to boys just to keep them around. Girls will lie to girls just to feel like they belong. Boys will lie to boys to boost their ego. Wow, sin is everywhere. Just makes me all the more thankful that there is a God that forgives sin ;)

  • I'm so thankful for this lesson today. In God's way he's had me reviewing the creation story both here and as I help at our church's VBS program. I have trouble with thinking unkind things in my mind and sometime in speaking about people with my husband. The Lord has really been convicting me of this. I think of myself as liberal minded– I have a master's in Education and I often agree with secular Humanist's approach to issues more than I agree with other Christian's. I allow myself to look down on Christians for their "close-mindedness" and their lack of an education, but this is wrong. It's wrong to let these thoughts come out– to speak them with others (even your husband!) or to let them have air-time in your mind. I need to reevaluate the reasons I look up to many non-Christians also, while it's ok to value their humanity and the loving spirit they portray, they will always go too far in their allowances because they worship the creation instead of the Creator.They are in need of a Savior as much as I am, as much as those brother's and sister's that I tend to sneer at. I'm praying that I will be able to put on love in both these instances. If anyone has a scripture that helps you to think kindly of others when you want to think badly of them, please share!

    • Psalm 139 girl

      Hi Sarah, here are a couple of scriptures and prayer for you, hope they help!

      Scriptures:

      The Love poem in 1Cor 13-4-8 You can replace Love with your name or "I"

      Sarah is patient and kind. She does not envy or boast; she is not arrogant or rude. She does not insist on having her own way; she is not irritable or resentful. She does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoice when right and truth prevail. She is ever ready to believe the best of others. She endures everything without weakening because the love of God in her never fails. (ESV + AMP)

      There's also Phil 4:8 – whatever is true, whatever is worthy of reverence, whatever is…. I will fix my mind of them. (AMP)

      Prayer:

      With my soul I will bless the Lord with every thought and purpose in my life. My mind will not wander out of the presence of God. I am ever ready to believe the best of every person. I gird up the loins of my mind, and I set my mind and keep it set on what is above – the higher things – not on the things that are on the earth.

  • This was such an impactful analogy for me relating to the false hope found in sin! So true. Thanks for sharing this, Raechel! Looking forward to tomorrow!

  • Alisha Nicole Branch

    My eyes have been opened like never before ❤️❤️❤️

  • honey bear

    I’m so thankful for these words remind to have peace during the home stretch of my first pregnancy. Thank you Jesus for your grace during my short comings in life.

  • Praise, honor, and glory to the name Jesus Christ Lord and Savior!

  • I’m so grateful that Jesus offers us a way out of our depravity, that He offers us Himself. Cause on my own I’m forever lost and busted.

  • lorinicole33

    we can also learn from Adam and Eve a lesson for our marriage. If we think about what could have been done differently, Adam was out naming the animals while Eve was in the garden when she was probably bored, and she sinned. Could he have conveyed Gods message better to Eve? Could he have included her in naming the animals, could he have protected her more? These are things we can apply to our marriages. Communicate more, husbands be leaders in the family, etc. Just a thought.

    • Bonnie

      Adam was actually with her the whole time (v 6). So the marriage lesson that I most glean from this is that men need to be strong leaders and speak up when they recognize temptation. Eve’s first sin was listening to the serpent instead of the Lord. Adam’s first sin was staying silent when he should have spoken.

    • Jessica T.

      I want to mention that Adam was with Eve the entire time, even during the moment the serpent deceived Eve into eating the apple. This small fact proves something big: A lot of faithful Christians struggle to try to avoid sin but how many of us are practically following sin around already? Adam saw everything that happened but didn’t try to stop the serpent. He let himself be influenced, and even if he didn’t agree, he is still on the sinners side by being neutral. Be careful about the people you hang out with;they can either positively impact you or bring you down with them.

  • Maddie Owen

    These plans have been so helpful to me. As a teenager I seen to kind of be alone in my faith in that my parents do not really follow God and most of my friends don’t either. This app has really been helpful to kind of show me the right way/path and help further my relationship with the Lord. Bless all of you ladies on this app and I will pray for you to become even closer with God and turn your head at the sight of sin. Loved the balloon analogy by the way!

    • Alexis C.

      So glad you are here with us Maddie! Someday I hope to see my granddaughter and daughters here also.

  • Victoria Rae

    Sin lies! So true.

  • Caroline

    There is someone that is in my life almost every day and hates me because of my religious beliefs. It is very hard to show love to her, but I know that’s what I’m called to do. If any of you have encouraging advice as to how to handle the situation, please let me know. It’s very hard to come home after being torn down by her for hours. Anything thoughts or encouraging verses would mean a lot to me. Thank you!

    • Laura

      That’s so hard, just said a prayer for you now.

    • M.J.

      Yesterday's study was very encouraging on this issue. I also have the same situation, and I learned that I need to see the people as made in God's image. I cannot encourage them in the Lord if I do not see their value. Believe me, I need prayer and forgiveness in this for the hurtful behavior has made a wide gap in love. I do believe the Holy Spirit can do it though. Prayers please.

    • Alexis C.

      Hi Caroline, here are two verses for you:

      Encouragement:
      Matthew 5: 11 “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. 12 Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

      Instruction:
      Matthew 10:14 “If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, leave that home or town and shake the dust off your feet.” (words of Jesus)

      From my background as an Executive Director in the private and public sector:
      If this is work situation and you are in USA she cannot cause a disruptive work environment for you based on your beliefs. You have a right under Federal law to discuss this with your supervisor. On the other hand, you cannot create a disruptive environment by evangelizing at work if it is in an area that makes others uncomfortable. I realize as a Christian this is a hard place to be in. BUT it does not mean that you cannot make your faith known. If you wear a cross or keep one significant verse at your desk. By your actions you will be an example of our Lord, just as we learned–we are created in His image. You may also be able to create a more positive environment by saying something like: ” _____, I would enjoy discussing my faith and the beauty and peace it brings to my life with you at a more appropriate time and place. But right now I have work to do for _____ and I really need to get to it. Let’s do lunch away from the office later this week”. If she persists : “________, your continual harassment toward me and my religious beliefs are causing a disruptive work environment for myself and others. Please discontinue speaking to me like this and let’s just concentrate on doing the work we are being paid to do.” Whenever possible have these simple statements overheard by at least one person you can trust so that if the problem becomes an employment issue you are on record for trying to defuse it. Don’t argue with her or try to convince her while at work and on your employers time. That will not bode well for you.
      My prayers are with you.

    • Marcy

      Caroline, I know how hard that is and my heart goes out to you. Try praying three things for her right as you have to deal with her. It keeps your mind focused on God instead of the situation. It’s amazing how well this turns my heart and mind around when I’m in similar situations. Remember that He could be using you, image bearer, to reach out to her. Jesus was rejected and scorned too. Remember you are not alone in the battle: Is. 43:1-3a But now thus says the Lord,

      he who created you, O Jacob,

      he who formed you, O Israel:

      “Fear not, for I have redeemed you;

      I have called you by name, you are mine.

      2  When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;

      and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you;

      when you walk through fire you shall not be burned,

      and the flame shall not consume you.

      3  For I am the Lord your God,

      the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.
      God bless you, Caroline!

    • Marissa

      Caroline, I can completely relate to your struggle. It can be so draining to be torn down by someone constantly. We know that in this world we will be persecuted, that’s no surprise. It’s just extremely hard and unpleasant when it happens. But praise the Lord that the battle is already won! On the day to day basis I think it’s important to just pray for compassion towards this person and to realize how lost they must be without Jesus and without the hope and peace that we have. If we can show grace and love to our enemies that is a true example of Christ’s love and one that might one day lead them to Christ himself. The Lord is using you in this situation and He will equip you to handle it. Ask Him for guidance and wisdom in HOW to love her and show His love even if it’s just by keeping calm and patient during persecution. Praying for strength and wisdom for you in these trials!

  • And sin always comes at us shiny like that balloon. Always. It’s never vague or muted or boring. That’s why it’s called temptation. If sin looked boring to the eye, why would we do it? This is a great lesson and I loved the scriptures that were used; all things I’ve read before, but never in this light.

  • I am so glad I came across SRT. I am striving to become more closer to God and love that this community exist!

  • Ester Puente

    Love the balloon analogy

  • This is my first time on SRT. I was told of it by a good friend, and am excited to get reconnected with women of faith! I recently moved to a new city and am a 3 week newlywed. What a powerfully truthful message to start out this plan. "We ALL fall short of the glory of God". It is humbling lesson, but so necessary to remind ourselves of. My prayer for this study is that I would be replenished in spirit and be guided in my relationship with my new husband. May God bless us all through this study.

    • Brittney

      Hi Sweet friend! I'm so glad we are going through this study together. I'm ready and excited to be immersed in his word again. :)

  • JackieO07

    I just began my maternity leave on day one of this series and I look forward to it every morning now. How I love my morning reads and learning more of God! My prayer to draw closer to Him!

  • Kasey Summers

    Love todays devotional!! Looking at the first fall of man with Adam and Eve till now… Sin ALWAYS leaves us coming up empty. It’s never as good as we think it is. And it’s never enough and it always hurts us. Sin looks enticing, but it is so deceiving. We deserve DEATH. Separation from Christ FOREVER. **BUT** JESUS!!! He stepped in! Walked the perfect life we could NEVER live and died the death that we DESERVE!

  • The lie: That we know what is best for us and must attain it alone, apart from God. This has such meaning to me. I am not in control.

  • Love that SRT started at the beginning to truly understand What is the Gospel. Well done!

  • Sin tells us that God wants to keep the good stuff from us—that what we want matters more than what He has for us (Genesis 3:4-5).
    Boy, have I believed those lies. I think that what the world gives is better. But it is a LIE! God is eternal and what this world gives is temporary. God’s love is eternal but the world’s pleasure fades away the second it becomes “enjoyable”. Thank you Lord for not giving up on me. I saw a picture one time that had Jesus and me standing facing each other. Jesus was holding out his hand, asking me for this tattered, dirty teddy bear I was holding. But I said to him, “But Lord, I love it!” Little did I know, Jesus was holding a restored and clean teddy bear behind his back. All I need to do is trust him!! Help me to trust you Lord, you provide. Help me find my joy in you.

  • In the last year, I have
    ran away in fear,
    hid in my shame,
    allowed anger and bitterness to take root,
    demanded my own way…
    and fallen on my face time and again.
    I have caused so much mess in my life by my misguided decisions. Self-imposed destruction. I have believed the lies of sin. And I have tried over and over to pull myself up out of this muck, to turn to Him. But my own selfishness has still been a distraction.
    Today is a fresh start kind of day, a day that I begin anew. To choose to *daily* hold fast to the Truth that my God is a God of Restoration. He can take these dead places, these broken pieces and make them new and beautiful again. And when I mess up – because I will, I am human – I will rest in His grace. I choose to believe in His goodness. To choose Him first, His ways over my desires. Praying for a heart postured toward Him and a mind attentive to His voice.
    Hugs and blessings to you all – wherever you are and whatever your circumstances, I pray He draws you nearer to His heart and His voice too.

  • Danielle A

    I woke up cranky. I woke up complaining. Praise God for revealing my sin to me. Today’s read is just what I need think and pray about today! Loving this refresher on the Gospel!

  • I love that even after they disobeyed, God still provided for them by making them clothes! He is faithful!!

  • My mom tells a similar balloon story- when I was a toddler I would get so attached to the balloons I was given by well-meaning cashiers that when it inevitably popped or floated away, I would be inconsolable. Eventually my mom began asking the clerks not to give me a balloon in order to avoid the heartbreak and subsequent tantrum. She says that they would always give her a strange look, not understanding why a parent would deprive her child of a fun and seemingly harmless toy, not understanding the pain it would be for both of us! In the same way, the world often side-eyes us for avoiding what God tells us is sinful, only seeing the fun and shininess of that sin and not the heartache it will cause. And often we are the child in line at the grocery store, not understanding why we can’t have that shiny balloon, not remembering the pain it caused us last time. How good our God is to have a parent’s heart that knows what is truly good for us!

    • Brittany

      “Not remembering the pain it caused us last time.” Oh my goodness gracious, how 100% accurate!!

    • KellyPowers

      So true, how quick we are to forget the pain of sin caused last time. Thanks for the encouragement to continue to avoid things the world sees as fine and enjoyable (for the moment).

  • Morgan♥

    Genesis 3: 8 talks about how Adam and Eve hid themselves from the presence of God. Because God loves his children and longs for relationship with them he looks for them and asks "Where are you?" (v.9)

  • Needed to hear that “sin promises to be worth” but it fails us every time. Thankful for Jesus and that there more than an end of death and despair to this story but there is grace and forgiveness!!

  • Cassandra Palumbo

    We have this expectations that what is “forbidden” is better, it’s easier it’s worth it. We forget it may be those things at the moment but it will rip your heart. We hurt our Lord. He aches for us and he loves us. When we sin we hurt not only ourselves or people involved or around us but also our dear Father who sacrificed so much for our sin. A dear friend sent this scripture to me this morning . I want to re read this scripture daily to remind my sinful self just how unworth it sin is. Just how it destroys not only me and those around me but the One who saved me.

    Titus 2:11-13 ” For the grace of God has appeared with salvation for all people, instructing us to deny godlessness and worldly lust and to live in a sensible, righteous, and godly way in the present age, while we wait for the blessed hope and appearing of the glory of our great God our Savior Jesus Christ”

  • Margaret

    Ok…this comment is not spiritual at all! It’s about kids and balloons haha! When my oldest experienced his first escaped balloon (he’s 24 now) we looked up and I said to him that it was going up to Jesus and how happy Jesus would be that he gave it to Him! He never had a problem letting them go after that and shared this with his sister after she came along. There were never anymore tears over lost balloons again! :)

  • Sin is more a path than a little or big act. The further down the path more sins are required to cover earlier sins. Our sense of guilt gets numb. It
    is not unlike serious drug addiction. It takes more and more and and one never gets the same "high". We all need to stop, turn around, come clean, and come back to the ONE so really loves us.

  • Shawn Bowers Buxton

    I’ve never considered the idea of sin being a lie we tell ourselves that we must attain something (glittery and shiny but sure to dull) apart from God. This makes such simple, good sense. And in this, I’m made painfully aware of how my insecurities (other lies) lead to sin. To believe ourselves worthy of God’s love, truly believe this as fact and not mythic fable, would enable the crushing of sin. Great study! Thanks so much!!

  • So very timely for me,maps just yesterday satan was whispering fears and doubts into my head. I keep asking God “for one more sign”. Yet his word says “his eternal power and divine nature have been CLEARLY seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are WITHOUT EXCUSE”.

    Yesterday I prayed that God would help me see my situation of bondage through his eyes, and that I wld renew my thoughts in a way that changed my perspective and approach to my situation. And God answered by saying “lean into the pain, and learn all you can from it”

    This devotional made me realize just how sneaky the serpent was, and how real he is in my life with the lies he feeds me, and that God is also very serious about my “exchanging truth about God for a lie , verse 24) God help me!

  • This is what sin does—it lies. It promises to be shiny and colorful and inflated with excitement forever. It promises to be worth it. Sin tells us that God wants to keep the good stuff from us—that what we want matters more than what He has for us (Genesis 3:4-5).
    Whoa! That was so convicting to me – I’d never say that I thought God was keeping good things from me, but that is what I’m living out when I sin against Him.

    • Beth

      It’s like my children… They think I’m trying to keep them from “fun” – cords that could strangle them, heavy objects that could crush them, hot times that could burn them, when I just want them to be safe and I have much better toys for them to play with!

      • Amy

        This is a perspective I’ve come to a lot as my 4 year old daughter calls me “mean” for not letting her stay up late, chew gum, or stay home by herself.

        When I feel I’m not getting my way (hello! That is sin!!), I’m the 4 year old child that God is so lovingly shielding from harm. When things don’t turn out the way I plan, that should be a convicting reminder to come back to God and seek his plan for me instead of my own.

      • Alexis C.

        Made me smile! Last week in VBS one of the little girls was not abiding by the class behavior code of RESPECT to myself and others while I was sharing the story. After two warnings I instructed her to take a different seat. Her response was a pout of indignation and ” Yesterday you were nice but today you are mean” I simply reminded her that her actions had moved her not mine. And went on with the lesson.

  • How deep and how great the Father’s love for us. How VAST beyond all measure… that He should give his only Son to make a wretch his treasure. a wretch like me. A treasure? Ooh, what wondrous love is this, Oh my Soul?

  • Meg Gorman

    Love that Marysue! Jesus’ ultimate sacrifice covered all my sins. Wearing this on my heart today.

  • My husband has a guest whose last stay a very, very expensive item went missing and the gentleman accused the hotel staff of taking the piece. His superiors, who know my husband and his staff well, along with my husband and local police did a full investigation over the course of months and found the hotel completely innocent of any wrong doing. There was a gaping hole in the man's story, new information previously withheld. In short, a choice made over his last visit put him in a unique place and the piece went missing because he responded to sin. Sin lied to him. Recently, the man and his wife came back for a visit. My husband received a call that the wife would like to meet with him to find out how this matter was going to be settled, how the hotel would repay the loss. She believes the hotel responsible, because her husband continues to tell her that is the case. My husband and I discussed this at length. Frankly, it's not a conversation he wants to have, nor one he should have. This is a hard conversation between she and her husband, but this husband is hiding behind lies and putting the blame on others, which could have affected the livelihood of my husband and a staff member because of the seriousness of the accusation. He is hiding in the garden, as we all have done and do.

    When we choose sin, when we accept it's lies, havoc is wrought, whether we see it or not. And the deeper we try to cover it, the bigger it becomes, the more people it effects and the deeper it carves pain into our lives, leaving huge canyons we can't avoid. I know this man desperately needs Jesus, his wife needs Jesus and this situation needs Jesus. So as my husband prepares for this meeting, my heart hurts, but is also hopeful. I see change coming in the garden. I see God looking for them, God calling to them, God comforting them and providing. I see hearts changing and I see a new paradise. I pray that my husband has the words for her that are needed and that her heart is softened, that Christ come along side her and usher their marriage into truth and change and that these two will have a testimony that will speak to others.

    "Sin is never worth it" … a truth we forget over and over. It calls to us to, no matter our position or status and it leaves us feeling less, with a sharp sting of a hard slap upon our cheeks it breaks into our paradise and robs us of God's desires for us. It steals us away from the beauty God has waiting as He wanders our garden seeking us, BUT in all our sin, God will not stop looking for us, He will not stop asking, "Where are you". Prayerful that this family I speak of finds Christ today, prayerful that I seek truth over sin in all I do today. That I remember the mercy God showed in the garden is for me too, for everyone. That like the flaming sword guarding that tree, I feel God's protection over my heart and that I work to shield it with the same fierceness. Prayerful that I lift this family up with fervor, that they may walk in the garden, unhidden, unafraid, feeling the warmth of God's glaring love over them! ~ B

    • Stacy

      Praying for your husband today, that the Holy Spirit will speak through him and give him the words to say to bring Jesus into the conversation and the guests lives.

    • Beverly

      B, I will also say a prayer for your husband. And for the guests – that their eyes will be opened and accepting of Truth. I love reading of your steadfast hope woven in this situation and for all of us. Praying that I may also "feel God's protection over my heart and that I work to shield it with the same fierceness."

    • Alexis C.

      Many prayers to everyone. Perhaps your husband should have a witness with him, police, corporate rep? Matthew 18:15-17
      “If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over.
      But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’

  • Thank you for this reminder this morning. Gods grace is cheapened when we don’t have an accurate grasp on our sin and our overwhelming need for a savior!

  • katherine

    Love you balloon story great laugh to my day off. Its funny cause it so true. I agree with you Laura .Ugh.. Eve is always a reminder to me of the enemy is only here to kill steal and destroy. He never comes at you in his true form. He comes in an image that is most appealing to you and your flesh. Thank you all so much for your post. God Bless you all.

  • In the time of social media and FOMO – this has never been more true. We see things at face value but never the emotions behind these shiny images showing travels. We sit here and cover objects and adventures that friends, family, STRANGERS are experiencing rather than embracing our wonderful settings.

  • Deb Black

    ‘They exchanged the truth of God for a lie…’ How often I do this! Father, please forgive me! There is a church near my home that has this on sign: ‘And Satan whispered, it’s not that bad’ — I have been convicted so many times on my drive to or from work that no matter how hard I try, I will never be strong enough or good enough to resist the enemy without Jesus. Thank God for His gift that rescued me and continues to protect me! Sin is never worth the cost but He is always worthy of praise!

  • That balloon story… Ugh… So true!!!

  • Love the balloon illustration! It’s so true that what we think we must have/do is sometimes the very thing that leaves us deflated and without luster when we pursue it apart from God’s plan. I’ve seen this in my own life time and time again. Walking last night, I listened to Lauren Diagle’s song “How Can it Be” and it just gave me chill bumps. However, a song like that, truth like that cannot give us that freedom until we first come to terms with our SIN! But that’s the ugly part; The part we (I) don’t want to look at. Thank you for this post! It was humbling and encouraging and a true blessing this morning.

  • 22 Claiming to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.

    I live in the Mecca of Hinduism- a city in Northern India. Here, 90% of people are Hindu, believing in something like 3 million gods. THREE MILLION! Can you imagine?! They are just like what the Bible describes- people who worship images resembling man and birds and animals and creeping things. And I think to myself, “it’s so sad.”
    And then I realize that I have idols in my own life- things that distract me from God. Things that lure me in, just like the juicy fruit on the tree that I’m not supposed to indulge in. Idolatry looks like little figurines that people kneel down to, but it also looks like spending too much time on Facebook (you know it’s true!), spending all of my free time on my hobby, or even loving my kids more than I love my God.

    Thank you, Jesus, that you revealed yourself to me, that you loved me, and that you have such a relationship with me, despite my sin and idolatry! You are so good to me!

  • Caroline @ In due time

    Ugh so true! Never worth it! So thankful He forgives us – each and every time!

    http://Www.in-due-time.com

  • Emma_Anderson

    Sin, what an ugly taskmaster. How interesting that you can see so early in life the effects of a heart set on the promises of worldly joy…even a balloon…and then deferred in hope. Disillusioned by sin.
    A preacher once noted for us in a sermon that it’s God’s love for his own that drives them from Eden. Not his punishment or vindictive heart. His love. His mercy that looked down and saw our wretched new state, and wanted least of all that we should even have opportunity to make our miserable estate permanent by having the option of eating the fruit of the tree of life.

    How quick I am to perceive sin’s promises as sure and God’s love as spite.

    Thanks for the healthy reminder this morning.

    • Sandy

      I never thought before about how Adam and Eve were not forbidden from eating from the tree of life beforehand. I guess they weren’t interested in it ? Perhaps they already had what it would give? Hmm…something to ponder.

      • Pam Blum

        I had never thought about this point either. God told them they could eat of any tree they wanted except the tree of knowledge of good and evil. So the tree of life was accessible to them, why didn’t they eat from that tree? It’s a interesting question that is making me think.

        • Emma_Anderson

          Honestly, I couldn’t say. :-) It’s all speculation and sanctified imagination here, and I have a near impossible time of imagining what I would do without a sin nature, but perhaps it’s in the command to “not” that the draw to sin lives. And, I mean, to be fair, Satan didn’t tempt Eve to eat of the Tree of Life. :-) His goal was to take as many down with him as he could, and pushing her toward the Tree of Life would hardly do that. :-) The interaction between Eve and the serpent almost suggests that Eve hadn’t thought about it until prompted.

          So. Other than “I don’t have a clue”, I think that Satan’s role in this bears much in the equation. And what a warning to us, too. His agenda hasn’t changed. He’s the same prowling thief.

          Thanks for thinking with me. :-)

  • Sin is never worth it – yet we continue in it. Lord, help me to draw closer to you when i desire my own way, so i can renember Yours is better.

  • Candacejo

    Love that ending! There is more! So glad Jesus didn't leave us in our sin but made a way of escape…in this life and for eternity as well. The Ultimate Sacrifice was made for all who will receive it. What a relief it is to step out of one lifestyle into the other, robed in righteousness because of the blood of the Lamb.

    Sin is never "worth" it. It is fleeting and only brings temporary happiness. But God!! We could list His attributes all day long and not begin to name them all! Thank you Jesus for deliverance from shame.

    I am loving this new song by Kristene DiMarco! Have you heard Eyes on You? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qwpn62sc1tI

  • Kelly_Smith

    "We believe the lie that God’s law is holding us back and that we know better." This screams of pride. It is the sin that drives me to take charge. It almost always leads to more sin–anger, malice, bitterness, gossip, doubt, worry. All starting with pride. The challenge is to believe God and His promises fully; to take Him at His word when He says "don't or you will die." The enemy comes in, whispering doubt. The seed of doubt produces a weed of pride. And the beautiful Garden becomes tarnished. Lord, I believe! Help my unbelief!

    • - M -

      Amen! My faith is tired and waiting on a failing marriage is taking its toll, I so easily fall into a "me" mentality "what about me? why cant I be happy?" Currently separated for over a year, pride is trying to creep in and convince me that I need to try something different other than Gods way but His ways are best, His solutions are best… Lord help my unbelief! I rebuke the enemy in Jesus name, over and over and over again. Thank you for always sharing Kelly, your comments always bring me encouragement and clarity <3
      – M

      • Linda

        M…..I am in the same situation. Your words are a blessing to my ears! I will stand for my marriage

        • - M -

          Praying over your marriage right now Linda, lots of love and hugs your way! <3
          – M

    • lynne

      I really like the line where you said, "The enemy comes in whispering doubt. The seed of doubt produces a weed of pride. and the beautiful garden becomes tarnished." Thanks for sharing the insight the Lord gave you!!

  • Brittney

    Every time I read Genesis, I say “ugh, Eve! You ate from that darn tree, you’re why I’m so nervous for childbirth (someday)!”

    • Cindy

      I've always felt myself a little strange in this but the promise of "pain in childbirth" for me is a tangible proof that all of God's promises are true. Yep, there is pain in childbirth for humans – and seemingly not for animals so it's obvious it didn't have to be part of the birthing process but is added in as a result of sin. For me, the pain of childbirth is a pivotal point where all of God's plan, all of His promises,, the gospel, Jesus necessity for becoming the sacrifice to answer God's wrath – all of it moves from being head knowledge and "I hope it's all true" to in this moment I experience the pain and therefore I experience that ALL of God's promises are true, real, crossing from possibility to reality, not just a story but so very life-and-death real. Call me weird but I've found encouragement in it.

      • Kristy

        So good! I love this.

      • Danielle A

        No, I think it’s beautiful! I always remember God in pain. I think that was his intention!

      • Amy

        I have never thought about that before – animals don’t seem to have pain in childbirth. What an awesome (albeit painful) expression of God’s promises still today for us!

      • Brittney

        Thank you Cindy for this! I’m 26 and although I’m single, I know babies are right around the corner for me. I have saved your response for when that time comes :) Again, thank you so much for sharing that insight. So beautiful & so true!

      • Maggie

        I know I’m late to this party! There’s a really interesting book called “Creating with God” that delves deep into how pregnancy and childbirth give us a window to see how God cares for and sustains his children. I really enjoyed it, the first and second time I read it!

      • Shawnicy

        You might also want to look up some studies on this topic. I have read many that point to the word used as pain actually having been used elsewhere for hard work. Birth, having done it 6 times (all natural and 4 at home) IS hard work and is HUGE but isn’t always painful even if it is hard work. And quite frankly the way we are designed and the hormones that are released as the baby passes from the womb through the birth canal are so incredible that any pain is quickly forgotten. God lovingly designed for us a way through it. I have never felt closer to His presence than when I am in the throws of childbirth. Please do not fear it because it is an incredible journey and work every second.

      • Amber

        Have you ever seen an animal give birth? They most definitely feel pain, at least mammals do! Anyway, I never thought about it that way

  • Bind My Wandering Heart

    Love this study, such a great reminder for us!

  • So glad for the reminder of where I came from and that through the blood of Jesus I have been redeemed and brought back to my original value!

  • i absolutely love this:))

  • carlybenson

    The verses in Isaiah show how deep the problem of sin is. We can't just do good deeds to sort it out. Even our good deeds are like filthy rags- "we are infected and impure with sin". I remember even as a child getting in trouble and thinking "now I'll be good" and really meaning it and really trying, and it would last maybe half an hour if I was doing well, and then I'd realise I just couldn't do it. I'm so grateful there is a solution in Jesus- that we don't have to sort it out for ourselves, that it's not that we have to do good deeds to outweigh our sin (because we can't) but we only need to admit we can't do it and turn to him.

    • Kelly_Smith

      Even knowing this doesn't stop me from trying! I still try to balance the ledger–good vs bad, holy vs evil. It is futile! All of my righteous deeds are as filthy rags. Praise God! I am covered in the righteousness of Christ!

    • Jenny

      I believe it is Leviticus & Numbers that contain rules for dealing with meat and dead bodies, and in those passages I was struck by how it illustrates that when we come into contact with things that are ‘bad’ like sin, that they can pollute everything. But even in this we can still see that by following God we can be redeemed.

    • Caitlin

      Amen. Your comment was a perfect description. Our God is so good and loves us more than we can even comprehend!

  • Alexis C.

    20 For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made.
    Our Hod is the one true God. To God be all the glory.

  • Marysue Fussell

    We can even go deeper into the verse 21. This was the first animal sacrifice, which God used to cover Adam and Eve in their nakedness, of their sinful act. Jesus ultimate was the perfect sacrifice to cover all of us in our sinful nakedness. God is good.

  • Love this! I feel so close to God right now :)

  • Here’s my favorite part of our scripture reading from tonight:
    21 “And the Lord God made for Adam and for his wife garments of skins and clothed them.”
    Even as God is angry and, in a sense, handing out punishment, He is taking care of His children–clothing them with something warmer, probably softer, than their previously crafted leaf loincloths. We cannot miss this part of the story. Thank you, Father.

    • shamekamichelle

      Yes! God is truly amazing and loving. God will never leave or forsake us. Lord knows I deserve to be punished for the decisions I've made, but God continues to provide for me and my children. I'm not worthy of God's love, but God tells me that I was worth fight and dying for. With everything God has done for me as wicked as I am how could I not love Him. God loves me!!!

    • Sandy

      God clothed them in animal skins- the first sacrifice for sin. A shadow of what is to come, when we are clothed in the righteousness of Christ, because of His ultimate sacrifice for us!

    • Missy

      I never looked at it from this aspect. We have such a loving Father.

    • Lori

      To me this is a description of Jesus. God covered Adam and Eves sin , their nakedness, just as he sent Jesus to cover our sins.

    • Shelley

      Beautiful.

    • sarahalyse

      I picked up on this too! I think it's a great example of how much God loves us and as a parent I think it is an excellent model of love. God's grace and mercy is so amazing.

    • Jenny

      I never even really picked up on that and I’ve read this passage so many times

    • Heather

      That struck me as well!! Amazing example of His unfailing love!

    • alma vargas

      I truly did not see that before, thank you

Further Reading...