Where Are You?

David Bast

Read: Genesis 3:8-15

But the LORD God called to the man . . . “Where are you?” (v. 9)

As God came looking for them, Adam and Eve turned and ran the other way! “And the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden” (v. 8).

How do you picture this? I think of a toddler holding his hands up in front of his face and saying, “You can’t see me!” Did Adam and Eve really think they could hide from God, that trees and shrubs could shield them from the searching gaze of omniscience? Did they really believe they could escape from the presence of the One who is always present everywhere?

The first time God speaks after the fall is to ask a question of his hiding children: “Where are you?” I suggest that this is not a request for information. God is not trying to locate Adam and Eve because somehow he has lost sight of them in the bushes.

God questions Adam and Eve not in order to gain a fix on their location but to offer an invitation. God is opening a conversation with them. In other words, he wants to communicate with them. “Communicate” comes from the same root word as “communion.” What God is really saying is, “What have you done? Where have you gone? Tell me. Confess to me. Return to me.”

In reaching out to a lost world, God always has the first word.

Here I am, Lord. Speak to me.