Part 4 of the Big Journey is entitled ‘The Fall’. It’s a PDF document illustrated in full colour throughout. Click on the PDF icon below to read or download it:
Outline of contents
Adam and Eve’s walk with God in paradise didn’t last. They rebelled against Him. The terrifying consequences of that rebellion confront us daily in a thousand ways.
In our last session we marvelled at humanity, made in God’s image, precious to Him and “crowned . . . with glory and honour” (Psalm 8.5). Through sin, that image is now defaced and dysfunctional. Through sin, human society has been torn and tormented ever since.
That fact has been demonstrated perhaps most terribly in the previous century. In 1939, the year that World War II broke out, writer and historian H.G. Wells expressed the sorrow of millions when he wrote: “. . . the spectacle of evil in the world during the past half-dozen years—the wanton destruction of homes, . . . the cold‑blooded massacres and mutilations . . . , the rapes and filthy humiliations and, above all, the return of deliberate and organized torture, mental torment and fear . . . has come near to breaking my
spirit altogether.” And – apart from God’s intervention – we have no reasonable hope that our present century will treat us more lightly.
Things are not the way they ought to be. All of us know that. Sandra Richter asks us to reflect with her “on a question I am frequently asked: ‘Why do bad things happen to good people?’ By this question people usually mean why do babies die, why are young parents struck with cancer, why are good citizens killed by drunk drivers? Sometimes people who ask this question are thinking more globally: ‘Why do tyrannous governments thrive? . . . Why are tens of thousands of children on this planet orphans?’ ” Dr Richter comments: “. . . all of the sons of Adam and daughters of Eve somehow know . . . that there is something profoundly wrong with the world as it is.” Humanity was created to live in paradise with God. We long to return there.
Nor is Nature spared. It suffers alongside us – pain and disease and natural disaster and untimely death throw a dark shadow over this beautiful world. To borrow C.S. Lewis’s words, “Nature has all the air of a good thing spoiled.”
What is sin and evil? How did evil originate and how did it enter our world? What has sin done to this world and what did God need to do to put things right? We’ll address these vital questions in this session. Understanding these things is a key to understanding the whole Bible story. Don Carson comments: “. . . the entire drama of the Bible’s storyline turns on understanding how abominable sin is and what must be done to end it.”
Part 4 of the Big Journey is available as a sixteen-page PDF document illustrated in full colour throughout. Click on the PDF icon at the top of this page to download it.
Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.