Mankind was cruising along in the garden and it was great! There was uninterrupted fellowship with the Father, perfect companionship with a special partner, and a an uncursed creation in which to live (who can really say what that was like?).
All we had to do was follow God’s loving directions given for our own good: Stay on the road. Don’t veer off and hit The Tree. If you do, it will be a disaster. Bad things will happen.
But we couldn’t leave it alone, could we? So off the road we went and into the tree we slammed. The result was a mangled mess.
At this point, our Father could have done a couple of things. He could have surveyed the scene and left us to die saying, “Well, I’m sorry this happened but they have no one to blame but themselves.”
Or, He could have rushed us to the hospital and began performing emergency surgery.
Fortunately for us, that’s what He did. And what a surgeon He is! Deuteronomy 32:3-4 says:
I will proclaim the name of the LORD.
Oh, praise the greatness of our God!
He is the Rock, his works are perfect,
and all his ways are just.
A faithful God who does no wrong,
upright and just is he.
Of course, Moses is speaking about God’s character rather than His surgical skills but in this case, it’s the same thing. This analogy explains (as well as I know how), God’s redemptive curse (Genesis 3:14-19; Romans 8:18ff). We sinned. God’s judgment followed. Like our sin, it touches everyone and everything. The curse isn’t pleasing (it’s a curse), but it is redemptive. Like surgery, it’s not meant to be comfortable but it is curative.