My parents were missionaries which meant that we didn’t often see members of our extended family. One year we took a trip to Washington and stayed with Grandma and Grandpa Erickson. My cousins happened also to be there and we spent great time playing together and competing. Loren and I, as the oldest, got to stay in Grandpa’s Winnebago parked just outside their home. One night Loren decided to teach me a game I’d never played—strip poker.
For every hand you lose in strip poker you shed one item of clothing. Being a competitive child and certain that I would win, I agreed to Loren’s terms. The loser had to run around the motor home in the buff. The game proceeded and my cards consistently were inferior to his. Loren assured me my luck would change. But as it turned out he won several straight hands. I protested there was no way I was taking my underwear off—what if someone saw me! But a boy’s word was a solemn thing. I ran my obligatory lap at impressive speed and pounced on the door to leap inside only to discover it was locked. While I viciously threatened I’m sure to kill him, Loren laughed in triumph at my predicament. I guess sympathy finally won over for he unlocked the door and I found refuge under the covers just as Grandma came out to investigate the commotion. Later I found out he was hiding aces and had cheated. Humiliation has a marvelous way of exposing naïve notions.
Genesis 3:2-6--The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat the fruit from the trees in the garden. But about the fruit of the tree in the middle of the garden, God said, ‘You must not eat it or touch it, or you will die.’”
“No! You will not die,” the serpent said to the woman. “In fact, God knows that whenyou eat it your eyes will be opened and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” Then the woman saw that the tree was good for food and delightful to look at, and that it was desirable for obtaining wisdom. So she took some of its fruit and ate it; she also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it.
What caused Eve and Adam to sin was not some sophisticated plot to become godlike. They fell to a crafty devil because they took their eyes off God’s word and fixed it upon a forbidden fruit. The danger of innocence is that we think we don’t need God. Eve should have brought the serpent’s slick line under the judgment of her Maker. We are always at risk if we trust our own reasoning and fashion an intended outcome oblivious to the power of evil. Perhaps true innocence should be thought of as in-no-sense. In no sense do we set aside God’s word for any reason.
The realization of nakedness is the understanding that I missed God’s will because I let go of His wise words. It’s not a good thing to be bare on the outside of a locked Winnebago!
As long as I remain under refuge of innocence, I am living in a fool’s paradise.—Oswald Chambers in Studies in the Sermon on the Mount
©2003 Daniel York ARR. Reveration is the weekly devotional ministry of First Cause. If you would like to receive these devotionals go to www.firstcause.org and click on the “Click here to receive weekly devotionals” box. Unlimited permission to copy this devotional without altering text or profiteering is allowed subject to inclusion of this copyright notice.
Ecclesiastes 12:10-The Teacher sought to find delightful sayings and to accurately write words of truth. (Holman CSB)