The Eden Podcast Study Guide 5. Curse #1 Was For The Serpent


Listen to Episode 5 HERE

Genesis 3:14-15. God’s words to the Serpent Tempter.  

Sometimes others can see something about us better than we can see ourselves. This was certainly true of the man in the Garden of Eden and his Creator. When the man rebelled against God and ate the fruit from the forbidden tree he followed Satan-in-the-serpent, the one who modeled rebellion for him. God clearly saw that!

Satan addressed both the woman and the man at the Tree. We know that because the Hebrew text uses plural pronouns every time Satan said “you.” His words were also aimed at the man as recorded in Genesis 3:1-5.

Exercise #1: Determine what the man did wrong.

1. Read Genesis 2:16-17 and Genesis 3:1-12

a. What did the man learn about the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil from God? From the Serpent?

b. Who did the man doubt?

2. Reread Genesis 3:2-6, remembering the serpent uses the plural form of “you” in its response. Why do you think the man remained silent, and accepted the fruit from Eve?

3. Compare Genesis 2:17 with Genesis 3:4-5, 7, then Genesis 3:8-12, noting a length of time has transpired. What does the man seem no longer to fear?

God’s words to the serpent-tempter and to the man are strikingly different from God’s words to the woman. God speaks to the serpent-tempter and to the man using a parallel six-point pattern. That striking pattern is totally absent in God’s words to the woman.

Exercise #2: Note the similarities in language in God’s address to the serpent and to the man.

1. What word appears at the beginning of both Genesis 3:14 and 3:17, and what does this signify?

2. After God described the action taken by the serpent in Genesis 3:14, and the man in Genesis 3:17, what did God say would now happen? (The word is identical in both verses)

3. Who is responsible for the action God took in each instance?

4. What two words appear at the end of both Genesis 3:14 and 3:17, and what does this signify?

5. How long will God’s action take affect for the man, and the serpent?

6. What verb is echoed in Genesis 3:14? How is this pattern repeated in Genesis 3:17?

The serpent and the man shared many things in common in their rebellion at the Tree. However, the woman’s case was different. Having been deceived, she had not purposefully participated in this rebellion, and God’s word reflected this.

Exercise #3: Identify the differences between God’s words to the woman, and God’s words to the serpent and the man. (Refer back to the points in Exercise #2)

1. Read Genesis 3:12-14. Upon whose testimony does God base His response?

2. Read Genesis 3:14-19 and compare the six points in God’s speeches to the man and serpent, with God’s speech to the woman. What six elements found in God’s word to the serpent and man are missing in God’s speech to the woman?

a. ________________________________________________________________

b. ________________________________________________________________

c. ________________________________________________________________

d. ________________________________________________________________

e. ________________________________________________________________

f. _______________________________________________________________

After God’s cursing of the body of the serpent, comes Genesis 3:15, a prophecy known as the protevangelium, the good news of salvation. In Genesis 3:15, in God’s last words to the serpent, God prophesies that the woman’s “seed” or “offspring” (zera‘) will defeat the Tempter. Bad news for the Tempter, but good news for the woman and all humanity!

God tells Satan that the result of his ongoing war with the woman will be his defeat. Then, as God turns to the woman God confirms to her, in Line 1, the good news that she will have … offspring. Has she eaten the fruit and died? Yes. But there is still to be life after that death. And there will be birth after death. That is the Good News. God gives it to her.

Exercise #3: In the passage below, identify the bad news for Satan and the good news for the woman.

Genesis 3:15-17

15 “I will put enmity between you and the woman,

and between your offspring and her-offspring;

he will bruise you on the head,

and you will bruise him on the heel.”

16 To the woman he said,

(Line 1) “I will greatly multiply your-sorrowful-toil and-your-conception;

(Line 2) with effort you will give birth to children.

(Line 3) Your affection is for your husband

(Line 4) but he will rule over you.”

17 And to the man he said,

“Because you listened the voice of your wife and ate from the tree

about which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat of it,’

cursed is the ground because of you;

in sorrowful-toil you will eat of it all the days of your life.”


See below for links to resources for further research. 

1. Blog post on Satan Has Struck at our Heels Too (

2. Dr. Joy Fleming’s doctoral research: The e-book summary in 48 pages (

3. Bruce C. E. Fleming’s Workshop video summarizing Genesis 3 with slide presentation (

4. Join the Tru316 Project! (

5. Podcast weblinks: www.TheEdenPodcast.comand

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