Reflecting on Genesis 2:7-9;3:1-7
Ah, Lent. Thank God you’re here. We would never have summoned you on our own, but you’ve arrived, as always, to challenge, and, yes, to befriend us.
Temptation has already licked at our heels these first few days of Lent. We may be a little hungrier, or hankering for the hours on the computer we’ve determined to limit. Whichever of the disciplines we take up this season, you can bet that the Tempter will remind us there are MUCH better uses of our time. But we know that voice by now.
You’ve got to feel sorry for Adam and Eve. Yes, God tells Adam (because Eve wasn’t formed yet) not to eat from the tree of the Knowledge of Good and Bad (a better translation than “evil’). Then Satan, the Liar, slyly asks Eve if God, that bully, REALLY told her she couldn’t eat from any fruit in the Garden.
Imagine having the Prince of Liars slide up to you and start touching your trigger points. Did you REALLY think you could reach out to your estranged sibling and show her how much you love her? Sure, that looked good on Ash Wednesday, but you don’t want to place yourself in that toxic environment again, do you?
The two temptations today feature weakened protagonists. Eve is weak because she doesn’t have any prior knowledge of the Liar, and is vulnerable. Jesus is weakened by his long fast in the desert. Adam and Eve fall for the lure, but Jesus, weak as he is, overcomes the Tempter.
Because of that, writes Alice Camille, “There is no desert so barren that Christ will not stand with us against our demons.”
How will you take strength from Jesus’ victory over Satan this Lent?
Kathy McGovern ©2023