We shall be drawing lessons from Genesis 3:1-10, 20-24 which presents us with an interesting account of how an originally designed purposeful and glorious life was ruined because a distraction was allowed to become an attraction.
Here we see a couple given a special duty of dressing and keeping a precious garden and taking care of God’s creatures. They were surrounded by all manner of things that were pleasant to the eyes, things that were very attractive and necessary for their well-being. Attending to them was enough task to keep them busy each day. They also had the freedom to explore, discover and enjoy these wonderful provisions in the garden. But there was one thing that was also in that same garden that is of utmost interest to us: the presence of the Tree of the knowledge of Good and Evil. The consequences of eating that particular fruit as we are already aware were damning. Why then was it planted, many may argue? Well, let’s recognize that the all-knowing God planted it and had His reasons for doing so and, of course, such secrets belong to Him (Deuteronomy 29:29). For man, it was sufficient to know that he could eat of every tree in the garden except that tree of the knowledge of good and evil. What God expected of man was to simply comply with an instruction that was very clear and definite.
A closer look at Jesus’ prayer towards the end of His ministry for His disciples whom He asked His Father not to take out of the same world where evil people also dwell should suffice us (John.17:14-16). Our major concern however should be on the warning against the forbidden tree and fruit which is still emphasized today in 1John 2:15-17, and every youth who has found himself or herself in the last day’s “garden” which contains diverse forbidden fruits must place this warning at the doorpost of his mind all through his/her journey into adulthood (Deuteronomy 6:4-9). The forbidden fruit was a distraction and still is a distraction, but unfortunately these distractions are very prominent and hold a strong appeal for youths today.
It is therefore very necessary that as a young man or woman, you should carefully identify these forbidden fruits and recognize the forces behind them. You are not left to make guesses. The Spirit of God clearly outlined them as the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life. These were the exact things that pulled Eve to the distraction that ruined her destiny and that of the whole mankind (Genesis 3:4-6). They were the same that brought down Lucifer (Isaiah 14:12-14). Satan tried to introduce the same to Jesus (Matthew 4:8, 9, 5, 6) in order to stop the purpose of His coming to the world (Matthew 1:21; 1John.3:8). The same strategy is still being used to remove youths today from their God-ordained programmes and kill their dreams by making distractions to appear attractive.