Homilies | Posted 08.03.2017

Genesis Chapter 3

Genesis Chapter 3 – Homily 3rd March 17

(The first part of this homily is in black country dialect)

           “The’er wuz a sairpunt in the gardin’, an’ a wicked spirit nairmed Satan gorr inside it, an’ all ov a suddin’ it started ter spake tew Eve.  It sed,  “’As God tode ye yo’ con ate ennythin’ off the trees?”  “Ar”, sed Eve, “We con, excep’ off that tree the’er,” piyntin’ ter the one God ‘ad ferbid um ter tuch.  “’E sez uz we shull die if we ate off that un”.

The sairpunt sed, “Dow be ser saft; ‘eez onny tode yer that cuz if yo’ ate sum on it, it’l mek yer clever; yo’ wo’ die.”

Eve lissund ter wot the sairpunt sed, an’ remembrin uz ‘ow it ud mek ‘er clever ‘er guz an’ picks a lushus lukkin’ opple off the tree.   ‘Er et a bit on it an’ gid Adam a few bites on it.   Suddinly, they bewth started ter shairk wi’ frite cuz the ‘eerd the yed mon’s vise callin’, “We’er bin yer?”  So they went an’ ‘id be’ind sum bushis.

God sed,  “Ar know we’er yo’ bin, cum aht on it.  An’ yer ‘ad summit off that tree ar tode yer not tew?

Adam replied, “It wus all ‘er fault mister, ‘er shuvved sum in me gob an’ I atter ate it.

Eve sed,  “It wor mar fault mister,  ‘onnist it wor; it wuz that sairpunt wot tode me t’ a’ sum, burr ‘e must a’ bin a coddin’ me.”

Human persons are amazingly simple minded and trusting, living in a kind of bubble of innocence, little realising that there may be sinister influences round about them, striving to bring them to grief.  Adam and Eve are you and I, basically good, but easily misled.

Just a week or so ago, a couple of rather poor women were persuaded to wipe a cloth on a man in an airport.   “No harm”, said the serpent, “And I’ll give you £50 for it; it just a reality TV stunt you know.”  Now it turns out the cloth was soaked in VX nerve agent; it killed Kim Jong Nam, and the two helpless women are charged with murder.   This is just one example of the vulnerable situation that simple, ordinary people may enter.  Kuala Lumpur airport may not look like the Garden of Eden, the men who approach the women did not appear as serpents, but the end result is the same.  The simple fact is that we are all very vulnerable and easily misled.

A careful reading of the Gospels shows that even the close disciples of Jesus, whom he called Apostles, were just as shaky as the rest of us.   How often they misunderstand him, how easily they panic when the crisis comes, how stupidly they quarrel about which of them is the greatest, how hopelessly they fail to understand the message of the scriptures about Jesus.   And as if to underline their unreliability, one of them, Judas, though specially chosen by Jesus, makes the dreadful move of betraying him for money.

All of this brings home to us the need to tread the right path carefully; not to assume that things will spontaneously work out.  The disciples, or most of them, became strong, reliable and true, by staying close to Jesus.  We must do the same.