“It’s a blessing with one tiny little curse.” This was Grant’s comment regarding parents with lake property. He’d just helped his dad move the boat lift up the hill that is our lakeshore for the winter, and was anticipating doing the same for his father-in-law a day or so later. Which he did. In SNOW. And I was thinking this might be its own curse moving back to Minnesota. Earliest winter on record. Not that Iowa’s much better.
Speaking of Minnesota curses. Our beloved Twins lost their eighteenth straight playoff game this fall. In the words of my third-born son—insert tone of passionate frustration—“MOM. This has never happened to any other North American sports team. EVER!” My family tells me it’s The Curse of Big Papi. You can read about it here if you’re interested.
Apparently curses are abounding this fall, and it’s not even Halloween. Or Election Day. A few weeks back, late September, we were enjoying picture perfect autumn weather, when a friend of my husband’s stopped by the lake for one last chance to take out kayaks. I decided to take a break from the day’s DIY project. I’d intentionally chosen an outdoor task—scrubbing exterior stone with an application of muriatic acid—and as I climbed down my ladder, I said something about the Honeycrisp apple I’d brought for my snack. Not missing a beat, our friend retorted, “Don’t forget Eve. She ate the apple, and look what happened.”
Days later, it came up again. This time it was my husband discussing his most recent outbreak of poison ivy with his mom, and—if only Eve hadn’t eaten that apple. Talk about a curse for the record books. (Also for the record—wasn’t the poison ivy attributed to Adam? Alas. Maybe it doesn’t matter.)
But it does make me wonder. Actually, I’ve spent a great deal of time pondering this since. And asking the question. What do we believe about curses?
Paul refers to this incident in his letter to the Romans, chapter 5. (Curiously, he does not one time mention Eve.)
Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned (Romans 5:12)—
We Christians call this The Fall—the awful turn of events at the very beginning of our grand story. First there was Creation. Everything good and perfect, man in God’s image; woman, too. And then—the snake. Sneaky liar, entering the story with perfect deception. You’ll be like God if you eat the fruit.
One bite and everything changes. Enter the curse. Death to all people, because all sinned—
Because of Adam.
…Adam, who is a pattern of the one to come (verse 14).
Hold on a minute. All sinned. This I get. But Adam was a pattern… of one to come?
Paul, of course, an excellent teacher, will explain this, too.
For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ! (Romans 5:17)
We Christians call this the Good News of the Gospel.
So here’s my question. Did this provision of grace apply to Eve’s sin, too?
Or to use Paul’s man-centered vernacular… Did Jesus die for the sin of Adam?
And if so. Is it possible Jesus took care of the curse?
Eighteen straight playoff losses, and maybe it’s not so much a curse as a mindset.
As for me. I believe in Good News.