ODJ: Hidden Costs

August 15, 2016 

READ: Genesis 3:1-7  

“You won’t die!” the serpent replied to the woman (v.4).

A security agency set up an open Wi-Fi network in a public area in London. When people connected to the network, they were presented with the usual lengthy terms and conditions. But there was a hidden, devilish catch—a clause stating that users of the Wi-Fi were “giving permanent ownership of the user’s firstborn child” to the agency. Six people clicked right through the clause and accepted the terms.

In Genesis 3, Eve clicked right through Satan’s terms—not seeing the hidden costs of her actions. The serpent (Satan in snake form) was shrewd—he knew how to trap her by using temptation. Satan used his diabolical shrewdness to take advantage of Eve’s innocence and integrity. He said, “Did God really say you must not eat the fruit from any of the trees in the garden?” (v.1). In those words were the hidden costs of over emphasising the strictness of God’s instructions and questioning His goodness.

Eve downgraded the good things God provided, adding to what He had said, and weakened what would happen if she and Adam were disobedient (vv.2-3). After Satan heard this, he blatantly denied the penalty: “You won’t die!” (v.4). This was the ultimate hidden cost. Satan lied. The result of their disobedience would be the hidden cost of their lost relationship with God.

The decision Adam and Eve made is the same wrong choice we would have made, and we’re still experiencing the consequences. But Jesus came and willingly paid the ultimate price for all the hidden costs of our disobedience. Though death came through that first sin, God’s wonderful grace and His gift of forgiveness is greater (Ephesians 2:4-5). He replaces the hidden costs of sin with salvation and hope for eternity! (John 3:16).

—Marvin Williams

365-day plan: Luke 15:11-12

Read Genesis 3:8-19 and list some of the costs of Adam and Eve’s disobedience. 
Think of a time when you’ve fallen prey to Satan’s hidden costs. How were you deceived? What are some ways you can avoid falling prey to Satan’s hidden costs this week?