You know when you are watching a movie and the character is about to go out in the woods…at night…when it’s storming…and the bad guy is out there waiting for them…and you want to just yell at them, “STOP!!!!!!!!!!!!!”. It seems so obvious that they shouldn’t go but they do.
I kinda have that moment every time I read the story of Eve. Everything in me wants to yell, “Talking to a serpent is a bad idea or is that not obvious already?? STOP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”
But there’s something else I think about when I read those first few chapters of Genesis, specifically when it comes to Eve: INFLUENCE.
And it is a double-edged sword.
In Genesis 3, we see how easily Eve was influenced by the serpent. One question from him and she is confused about what God said. The commandment was “… 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 2:17) What does she tell the serpent? That they couldn’t eat it or touch it. That was close but not exactly what was said.
Well, at least she got the point – don’t mess with the tree. Unfortunately, all it took was one more line from the serpent and she was messing with the tree.
I can’t be too hard on Eve though. I’m pretty easily influenced myself. A look from someone, something someone said, something someone didn’t say, a particular time of the month (just being real), my own emotions…that’s all it takes. And before I know it, I’ve allowed myself to be influenced by something that seemed like truth but actually wasn’t.
The other side of this double edged sword is her ability to influence. All she had to do was hand the fruit to Adam and humanity was changed forever. Remember, from what we see in scripture, he is the one who heard directly from God about this. Ultimately, Adam chose his wife’s voice over the voice of God.
Your voice as a woman is powerful. We see examples of this in scripture time and time again…for bad and for good.
Abram took Sarai’s advice instead of trusting God’s timing. Jacob deceived his own father because of the words of his mother, Rebekah.
King Ahasuerus listened to Esther and the Jews were spared. Jesus submitted to His mother Mary and the first miracle was performed.
In 2 Timothy, Paul talks about the last days and how there will be false teachers and imposters…and here’s what he says they will do: “…creep into households and capture weak women, burdened with sins and led astray by various passions, 7 always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth.” (3:6b-7)
Another translation puts it like this: “Such women are forever following new teachings, but they are never able to understand the truth.”
I don’t want that to be said of us. I don’t want us to be those women who attend every women’s conference, listen to every podcast, attend a Bible study or even read posts like this…and we do lots of learning but no understanding.
I don’t want to be a woman who is captured or swayed by false teachers, serpents or my own misguided feelings. I don’t want to be a woman whose influence leads people further away from God’s presence.