Genesis 3:1-3:24 – Repetition and Pace

Characters

Names

  • Serpent
  • Woman
  • Man
  • God

Position / Distance & Static / Dynamic

  • Serpent
    • Static –
    • Distance – Center of narrator and audience focus. Affecting change in the situation
  • Woman
    • Static – No emotion until the end when woman is presented.
  • Man
    • God

Stereotype Gaps

  • Serpent
    • Stereotype Gap – To this point, nothing else in creation has spoken.
  • Woman
    • Stereotype Gap – Woman makes the decision and directs Man.
  • Man
    • Stereotype Gap – Man passively accepts the Woman’s fruit decision.
  • God
    • Stereotype Gap – In contrast with the previous two narratives, God makes his appearance last.
    • Stereotype Gap – God asks questions as if he does not know the answer.

Emotional Intensity & Irony

  • Serpent
    • Emotional Intensity – (3:4-5) The questioning becomes much more emotional when the questioning turns to accusation against God.
    • Irony – (3:14) The serpent was never allowed to give a response to God’s accusation.
    • Irony – (3:14) His curse seems to be the most severe despite the fact that he did not eat the fruit.
  • Woman
    • Irony – (3:6) The rationale the Woman used has nothing to do with the argument made by the Serpent.
    • Emotional Intensity – (3:7) Panic sets in when their eyes are opened to their nakedness.
    • Irony – (3:15) Punishment seems unusual. In what way is childbirth connected to the eating of the fruit?
  • Man
    • Irony – (3:6b) The serpent took time to convince the Woman to eat. However, Man did not seem to hesitate, even though the regulation and warning in 2:17 was made to him.
    • Irony – (3:7) Eating of the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil led to an awareness of nakedness. How are these connected?
    • Irony – (3:17-19) Curse doesn’t seem connected to eating the fruit or having knowledge of good and evil.
    • Irony – (3:20) Man renamed his wife to Eve, the mother of all living. Unusual because he had just accused her of giving him the fruit and condemning them both to death.
  • God
    • Emotional Intensity – (3:11) God’s simple questioning turns into a pleading questioning. As if to ask why Man has ruined the situation.
    • Emotional Intensity – (3:14) God’s intensity grows to a more serious tone when he begins to administer the curses. He is no longer a peer looking for a friend, but an authoritative figure doling out judgment.
    • Emotional Intensity – (3:22) God’s seriousness has now changed to concern and almost anxiety. In 2:24, the impact of that anxiety is heard.  Despite having already cursed Man, God aggressively forces him out and places an overtly intimidating figure to guard the tree of life.
    • Irony – (3:21) God, after cursing them decides it is best to make them better garments than the ones they had made for themselves.
    • Irony – Both God and the Serpent use leading questions to force the individuals involved to arrive at the truth.
    • Irony – God curses three things. The Serpent, the cattle and creatures of the field, and the ground. Man and Woman are not explicitly cursed despite they being the two who actually violated the command.

Comparison and Contrast

  • Serpent and Woman
    • Serpent is the cunning one. Seems to be luring the Woman into a trap.
    • Woman knows the regulations but her desire for the fruit grows during but necessarily because of the Serpent’s argument.
  • Man and Woman
    • Woman takes a lot of time before being convinced to eat. Man eats immediately.
    • Man blames both God and Woman. Woman blames the Serpent.
  • Man and God
    • Man acts as if he is subordinate to Woman.  God maintains his authority.

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