PASSAGE: “And the Lord God made garments of skins for the man and for his wife, and clothed them.”
COMMENT: I think this is an important verse in terms of understanding the delicate relationship among Adam, Eve and the Lord (and the serpent, for that matter) as the result of the humans’ decisions to eat of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Many people, reading the rather fierce speech of God (3:14-19), assume that God is furious at the disobedience, sentencing Adam and Eve to lives of misery, lack and pain as a consequence. Yet two verses later, God is making them clothing and helping them to pack, like a doting mother sending her kids off to college.
It invites us to revisit the earlier verses and, I think, to see that God is not dictating a punishment, but simply describing consequences. Every choice we make has consequences—that’s as true today as it was in the past. Led by the creative, loving energy of the feminine (Eve), we have chosen to move from an experience of total unity, which is the Garden, to an experience of duality. God wants us to make that choice—that’s why God’s creature the serpent is sent to be the tempter. We are needed to continue the great creative process, but our participation won’t be effective unless it’s our own choice. I think God is very proud that we made the choice we did, although God is also aware that the consequences of that choice will be painful, hard and confusing. Our job is to make the choices that will transform the dualistic illusion into an expression of the truth that everything is of God.