Genesis 3:13
And the LORD God said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.
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Genesis 3:13. What is this thou hast done? — Wilt thou own thy fault? Neither of them does this fully. Adam lays all the blame on his wife; nay, tacitly, on God. The woman whom thou gavest to be with me as my companion, she gave me of the tree. Eve lays all the blame on the serpent. The serpent beguiled me.

3:9-13 Observe the startling question, Adam, where art thou? Those who by sin go astray from God, should seriously consider where they are; they are afar off from all good, in the midst of their enemies, in bondage to Satan, and in the high road to utter ruin. This lost sheep had wandered without end, if the good Shepherd had not sought after him, and told him, that where he was straying he could not be either happy or easy. If sinners will but consider where they are, they will not rest till they return to God. It is the common fault and folly of those that have done ill, when questioned about it, to acknowledge only that which is so manifest that they cannot deny it. Like Adam, we have reason to be afraid of approaching to God, if we are not covered and clothed with the righteousness of Christ. Sin appears most plainly in the glass of the commandment, therefore God set it before Adam; and in it we should see our faces. But instead of acknowledging the sin in its full extent, and taking shame to themselves, Adam and Eve excuse the sin, and lay the shame and blame on others. There is a strange proneness in those that are tempted, to say, they are tempted of God; as if our abuse of God's gifts would excuse our breaking God's laws. Those who are willing to take the pleasure and profit of sin, are backward to take the blame and shame of it. Learn hence, that Satan's temptations are all beguilings; his arguments are all deceits; his allurements are all cheats; when he speaks fair, believe him not. It is by the deceitfulness of sin the heart is hardened. See Ro 7:11; Heb 3:13. But though Satan's subtlety may draw us into sin, yet it will not justify us in sin. Though he is the tempter, we are the sinners. Let it not lessen our sorrow for sin, that we were beguiled into it; but let it increase our self-indignation, that we should suffer ourselves to be deceived by a known cheat, and a sworn enemy, who would destroy our souls.The woman makes a similar confession and a similar indication of the source of her temptation. She has now found out that the serpent "beguiled her." The result has not corresponded to the benefit she was led to anticipate.

There seems not to be any disingenuousness in either case. Sin does not take full possession of the will all at once. It is a slow poison. It has a growth. It requires time and frequent repetition to sink from a state of purity into a habit of inveterate sin. While it is insensibly gathering strength and subjugating the will, the original integrity of the moral nature manifests a long but fading vitality. The same line of things does not always occupy the attention. When the chain of events linked with the act of sin does not force the attention of the mind, and constrain the will to act a selfish part, another train of things comes before the mind, finds the will unaffected by personal considerations, and therefore ready to take its direction from the reason. Hence, the consciousness of a fallen soul has its lucid intervals, in which the conscience gives a verdict and guides the will. But these intervals become less frequent and less decisive as the entanglements of ever-multiplying sinful acts wind round the soul and aggravate its bondage and its blindness.

13. beguiled—cajoled by flattering lies. This sin of the first pair was heinous and aggravated—it was not simply eating an apple, but a love of self, dishonor to God, ingratitude to a benefactor, disobedience to the best of Masters—a preference of the creature to the Creator. How heinous a crime hast thou committed! What a world of mischief hast thou by this one act brought upon thyself and all thy posterity? Or, why hast thou done this? What causes or motives couldst thou have for so wicked an action? What need hadst thou of meddling with this forbidden fruit, when I had given thee so large and liberal an allowance?

And the woman said, The serpent, a creature which thou hast made, and that assisted by a higher power, by an evil angel, for such I now perceive by sad experience there are,

beguiled me, a weak and foolish woman, whose seduction calls for thy pity, not thine anger;

and I did eat, being surprised and over-persuaded against my own judgment and resolution.

And the Lord God said unto the woman,.... Who was first in the transgression, and drew her husband into it, and upon whom he seemingly casts the blame of his eating the forbidden fruit:

what is this that thou hast done? dost thou know how great an offence thou hast committed in breaking a command of mine, and how aggravated it is when thou hadst leave to eat of every other tree? what could move thee to do this? by what means hast thou been brought into it, and not only hast done it thyself, but drawn thine husband into it, to the ruin of you both, and of all your posterity? so heinous is the sin thou hast been guilty of:

and the woman said, the serpent beguiled me, and I did eat; that is, a spirit in the serpent, which she took for a good one, but proved a bad one, with lying words and deceitful language imposed upon her, told her that the fruit forbidden was very good food, and very useful to improve knowledge; even to such a degree as to make men like God; and this God knew, and therefore out of envy and ill will to them forbid the eating of it; nor need they fear his menaces, for they might depend upon it they should never die; and thus he caused her to err from the truth, and to believe a lie; and by giving heed to the seducing spirit she was prevailed upon to eat of the fruit of the tree, which was forbidden, and which she owns; and it is an ingenuous confession that she makes as to the matter of fact; but yet, like her husband, and as learning it from him, she endeavours to shift off the blame from herself, and lay it on the serpent.

And the LORD God said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, {l} The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.

(l) Instead of confessing her sin, she increases it by accusing the serpent.

13. The serpent beguiled me] The woman, in answer to the direct and piercing question, lays the blame upon the serpent. For the word “beguiled,” cf. 2 Corinthians 11:3. See St Paul’s use of the passage in 1 Timothy 2:14.

The serpent is not interrogated. Perhaps, as some suggest, because “being an animal it is not morally responsible: but it is punished here as the representative of evil thoughts and suggestions” (Driver). Others have surmised that, as some features of the story have disappeared in the condensed version that has come down to us, the question put to the serpent and his answers may have seemed less suitable for preservation.

The interrogation is over: it has been admitted, (1) that the man and the woman had eaten the fruit: (2) that the woman had given it the man: (3) that the serpent had beguiled her. The evil has been traced back from the man to the woman, from the woman to the serpent: there is no enquiry into the origin of the evil. Judgement is now delivered in the reverse order, beginning with the serpent, and concluding with the man on whom the chief responsibility rests; for he had enjoyed direct converse with the Lord, and had received the charge of the garden.

Verse 13. - And the Lord said unto the woman - without noticing the excuses, but simply accepting the admission, and passing on, "following up the transgression, even to the root - not the psychological merely, but the historical (Lange): What is this that thou hast done? Or, "Why hast thou done this?" (LXX., Vulgate, Luther, De Wette). "But the Hebrew phrase has more vehemence; it is the language of one who wonders as at something prodigious, and ought rather to be rendered, ' How hast thou done this?'" (Calvin). And the woman said (following the example of her guilty, husband, omitting any notice of her sin in tempting Adam, and transferring the blame of her own disobedience to the reptile), The serpent beguiled me. Literally, caused me to forget, hence beguiled, from נָשָׁה, to forget a thing (Lamentations 3:17), or person (Jeremiah 23:39; Stanley Loathes, 'Gram.,' App. 197); or, caused me to go astray, from נָשָׁא (unused in Kal), kindred to כָשָׁה, perhaps to err, to go astray (Gesenius, Furst); ἠπατήσε (LXX.), ἐξαπάτησεν (2 Corinthians 11:3). And I did eat. "A forced confession, but no appearance of contrition. 'It's true I did eat, but it was not my fault'" (Hughes). Genesis 3:13The man could not hide himself from God. "Jehovah God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?" Not that He was ignorant of his hiding-place, but to bring him to a confession of his sin. And when Adam said that he had hidden himself through fear of his nakedness, and thus sought to hide the sin behind its consequences, his disobedience behind the feeling of shame; this is not to be regarded as a sign of peculiar obduracy, but easily admits of a psychological explanation, viz., that at the time he actually thought more of his nakedness and shame than of his transgression of the divine command, and his consciousness of the effects of his sin was keener than his sense of the sin itself. To awaken the latter God said, "Who told thee that thou wast naked?" and asked him whether he had broken His command. He could not deny that he had, but sought to excuse himself by saying, that the woman whom God gave to be with him had given him of the tree. When the woman was questioned, she pleaded as her excuse, that the serpent had beguiled her (or rather deceived her, ἐξαπάτησεν, 2 Corinthians 11:3). In offering these excuses, neither of them denied the fact. But the fault in both was, that they did not at once smite upon their breasts. "It is so still; the sinner first of all endeavours to throw the blame upon others as tempters, and then upon circumstances which God has ordained."
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