Genesis 2:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.
There is a heresy that is being promoted by the New Evangelical crowd. That heresy is known as the doctrine of the second chance. There is no doubt that the fall of man changed everything. The common solution to man’s problem is to redefine the holiness of God, allow for sin and even excuse sin.
Adam tried to do that but he found out it does not work. Adam and Eve did not get a second chance to stay in the Garden of Eden. They did not get a second chance at not having a sin nature. God forgave them, but they did not get a second chance.
Man has a problem with absolutes. There is a common saying: “it is easier to ask forgiveness than for permission.” The reality is that if a person does not ask for permission, he does not understand forgiveness.
Adam did not ask for permission to eat of the forbidden fruit. He did not know how to ask forgiveness. He knew how to make excuses, but not how to acknowledge failure. Humility is important but it is not common for us as people. Adam showed us that the natural response for sin is to blame someone else.
No one needed to teach Adam this. It was something he immediately knew how to do after he fell. He could not blame the devil for his sin. He also could not blame his wife for his sin. He even tried to blame God for his sin. Adam was left standing naked before God. He had no defence and he did not want God’s forgiveness.
God was gracious to Adam and forgave him and his wife. However, that forgiveness did not remove the consequences of the sin. Adam and Eve caused the death of an animal in order for God to make them coats of skins. There needed to be the shedding of blood as an atonement for sin. This atonement also did not remove the consequences of the sin. God drove Adam and Eve out of the Garden. They no longer had access to the Tree of Life. They now needed to face a harsh new environment. God was with them in this new but sad environment, but He did not erase the consequences of Adam’s sin.
We do not know how long after the fall of man before Cain was born. We know that Cain also chose his own way.
Genesis 4:3 And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD.
4 And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering:
5 But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.
Cain wanted a god, but he wanted a god of his own imagination. He wanted a god who would be proud of his self-effort. He wanted a god that was not so gory and required a blood sacrifice. Cain was the forerunner to the animal lovers of our day.
God rejected Cain’s offering and told him what he needed to do to make things right with God. Cain did not want to do this and chose to add to his sin by murdering his brother Abel. Cain did not get a second chance to bring his brother back to life. He was judged by God and he did not like God’s judgment. He accused God of making life too hard for him.
God is good and He gives man a fair warning regarding sin. Cain chose not to follow God’s instructions and yet he wanted to be treated as though he never sinned. The false doctrine of “second chances” is a man-made doctrine designed to take the sting out of sin. If man can sin and still have all the benefits of not sinning, why not. God shows us this is not possible.
God shows us that we can be forgiven, but He also shows us that there are consequences to sin. Our minds are powerful organs. Even those who want to promote false doctrine cannot shut down the reminders that God sends to the heart and conscience.
Those who are saved will understand and appreciate God’s forgiveness. He gives us His joy in the midst of a sin-cursed world and even when we personally sin against Him. That joy may not be what it could have been if we had not sinned, but it is still a joy the world does not know. The saved person does not need the devil’s distractions to find that joy. The saved person understands there is no joy in the devil’s distractions. Sin can never bring joy.
Rather than buy into the lie of the false doctrine of “second chances” the wise person trusts in the true God and when he sins he seeks God’s forgiveness and he establishes God’s way of escape for the future.