November 4, 2014
So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. Genesis 3:6
There are days when the fishing is good in the waters around Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
That's the way it was for one fisherman who, when he returned home, shared some of his catch with his neighbors, the Souza family. Cristiane Souza says, "The fish looked so tasty, so we invited the whole family. We fried it and everyone tucked in."
The first to tuck in was Cristiane's husband, Jose. Others soon followed and all commented on how good that fish tasted. It was Jose who spoiled the festive tone of the feast when he commented, "I can't feel my tongue." That was quickly followed up by, "I can't feel my face ... my arms ... my legs."
Other family members said they had the same symptoms.
By the time an ambulance arrived, Cristiane's brother-in-law couldn't walk and had to be carried out of the house. Altogether, 11 members of the family ended up in critical condition. In treating the Souza family, the hospital discovered they had eaten pufferfish. Now in Japan, pufferfish is a delicacy, but before he can serve pufferfish, a chef has to have had two years of training on how to do it safely.
That's because the pufferfish contains some of the deadliest poison known to man. In fact, pufferfish poison has a toxin which is 1,200 times more lethal than cyanine, a drop of which can kill within 24 hours.
Any Christian who has read about the tragic events that occurred to this family cannot escape making a comparison between the Souza family and the story of humankind's fall into sin. Eve, like the Souza family, like us, found the forbidden fruit looked good to eat. Indeed, it didn't take too much persuasion before she and Adam "tucked in." Like the Souza family, it didn't take too long for our original ancestors to realize they had made a mistake.
The greatest difference between the two stories is this: for Adam and Eve, there was no hospital which could treat them. Their prognosis was certain: they were going to die both temporally and eternally.
Indeed, that's the way it would have remained if the Lord had not inserted Himself and promised a Savior. In the Person of Jesus Christ humanity was given hope. As Isaiah said, "But He was pierced for our transgressions; He was crushed for our iniquities; upon Him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with His wounds we are healed" (Isaiah 53:5).
Oh, there is one other difference between these stories. As of this writing, it is not known how the whole Souza family is going to end up. In contrast, I can tell you that all who have Jesus Christ as their Savior from sin are forgiven, restored and healed.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, the world's temptations looked good to Adam and Eve, and they look good to me. Grant me the wisdom to recognize and avoid those temptations. And grant that I may be grateful that when I am led astray, there is forgiveness in my Savior. In His Name I pray. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries