I think this must be one of the saddest chapters in the whole Bible, and I can't help but think how different history might have been if mankind just would have OBEYED God. Ironically, that's still the issue that defines a large number of our problems today. What would happen, how would things change, if we would just OBEY God!?
Two notes that I copied from my old Bible into my new one, were the following:
1) Satan inspires doubt (3:1 "Hath God said . . .")
2) Satan mixes lies with the truth (Ye shall not surely die . . . your eyes will be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil)
Satan tells a good story, and so often we believe it. We must consider our situation carefully if we are called to doubt, or if elements of truth and falsehood are intermingled! The result of doubt and delusion was sin. The result of sin was fear and separation.
So who's fault was it anyway? Adam blamed God and Eve (3:12 "The woman whom THOU gavest to be with me, SHE gave me of the tree . . . and I did eat). Eve blamed the serpent and ignorance (3:13 "The SERPENT BEGUILED me . . . and I did eat). The verbose serpent suddenly and strangely had nothing to say. God didn't let the blame-game work. In God's perfect eyes, He knew that both the man and the woman had sinned. He called each one into account, and each one knew separate consequences. Rather than perpetually and eternally enjoy his work, man would struggle to earn a living. Rather than basque in a role as helpmeet and find fulfillment in tending the garden of her home, woman would bristle under the rule of her husband and know pain along with joy in regards to her children.
I am very challenged by this account, because I know that I've been guilty of the blame game in many situations. When I am wronged especially, I take the liberty of responding in an ungodly way, indulging my feelings; rather than a godly way that follows Christ's example. Then I blame the one who did me wrong for my sinful response. But the sin and the consequence are mine.
1) Fear (3:10 "I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid . . .)
2) Effects those around us (3:21 "Unto Adam also and to his wife did the Lord God make coats of skins, and clothed them). Adam had probably named the animals that now covered his body.
3) Separates us from God (3:24 So he drove out the man . . .)
Before God even laid consequence upon Adam and Eve, He presented the prophesy of their deliverance in his curse of the serpent (3:15 "And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel"). He left them with what could save them, faith that God had said. Faith that someday, God would keep his promise to them.