16 March, 2016

Genesis 3:8—Was Adam and Eve’s “Hiding” of Themselves a Remnant of Good within Them?

“And they heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden” (Genesis 3:8 KJV).


Rev. Robert C Harbach

The effect of the Lord’s voice was that they “hid themselves,” not in humbleness as unworthy to come into His presence; nor in modesty, but in a sense of guilt. It is clear that there is no sign of grace operating in Adam and Eve at this point. They react, not under the influence of grace, but in fear, and under the power of their sinful nature. Godly sorrow and repentance are not evident. They are not under grace, but under condemnation. The “common grace” philosophy, however, finds evidence of some good in man in the fact that he had a sense of shame. Only utterly shameless men show no shred of grace in them. So the theory runs. But their shame was not a good thing; it was a horrible dawning upon their consciousness of their newly acquired corruption. Their shame was no more “good” than was the “repentance” of Judas (Matt. 27:3). There is a natural shame even in the vilest of criminals which shows that even the incorrigible and totally depraved know what is right and what is wrong. They know, that is, experience, the shamefulness of sin. This shame is no remnant of good in fallen man. It is no form of godly sorrow, but only another form of sin, namely pride and desire to have some appearance of respectability.

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