Genesis 3:1-8 / Mark 7:31-37
A recent study on vandalism in USA dramatizes the price we pay for sin— in monetary terms alone. The study estimated that vandalism costs us over a billion dollars a year. Consider a few examples.Several youths opened an aqueduct valve in Newark, New Jersey, causing a loss of 50 million gallons of water and costing the city $2.5 million for repairs and the purchase of water. Broken windows, slashed seats, and graffiti cost the New York Subway System $7 million a year. Finally, schools spend $600 million yearly to repair damage caused by vandals. The monetary price of sin is high. Higher yet is the spiritual price we pay.
What is our attitude toward vandalism? “He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetuate it.” Martin Luther King, Jr.
Why do people sin? According to the author of Genesis, sinning is not the nature of humans: they were created good. But as far as the memory of people goes, they have sort of rebelled against God, they wanted to be their own masters, to decide for themselves what they wanted. This is put here in the form of a story that expresses also our solidarity in sin.
In the 1st reading, where was God in the darkest moment of the devil's temptation? Surely God was around, but He was neither consulted nor was He asked to be involved in the conversation between the serpent and the woman. In the darkness of the moment, Adam and Eve fell into sin, and that made them hide from God. Sin opened their eyes, only to make them run and hide. Whereas Jesus opened the ears and loosened the tongue of the man, and the eyes of the people were also opened to see that God has come to restore the goodness of His creation. In fact, that was what God wanted to do for Adam and Eve when He walked in the garden in the cool of the day - He came as a friend; He came with love and forgiveness.
God will always walk with us in the moments of our temptations, and He wants to save us in the darkness of our sin. May we open our eyes to see the light of God's love in the darkness of temptation and sin. May we also open our ears to hear the voice of God that calls out to us to turn back to Him. May we open our lips to call out to God to help us and save us.