Home From Exile – Gospel in Life

Home From Exile

Tim Keller |  January 10, 2016

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Genesis 3:7-24
RS 364-01


Home is where you fit. Home is where you can be yourself. But Genesis 3 tells us what’s wrong with the human race: we’re homeless.

To see the great goods the gospel brings to us, we need to first see what’s fundamentally wrong with the human race. What we’re told here is that the condition of the human race is homelessness and exile, writ large.

In this passage we see 1) that all human beings are exiles, 2) why we’re all exiles, and 3) how we can be brought home.

Sermon Summary

Adam and Eve’s disobedience led to their fear, shame, and blame-shifting, which resulted in God’s curse and their banishment from the garden. Despite their fallen state, God provided for them, symbolizing humanity’s need for redemption. This story serves as a reminder of our exile and the hope of returning home through the gospel.

1. All human beings are homeless exiles

The exploration of exile and homelessness reveals the universal human experience of dislocation and alienation, exemplified by physical displacement such as refugees. Genesis 3:23-24 suggests that humanity is fundamentally in a state of spiritual and theological exile, not truly belonging in the world as it currently exists. The inevitability of death and the presence of suffering underline that this world, marred by disease and pain, is not the intended home for humanity.

2. Why we’re all exiles

The theme of alienation, particularly the human disconnection from nature, each other, and their true selves, is explored, illuminating the blame culture in relationships and the power dynamics that supersede love and service. The consequences of this alienation, such as fear, shame, and the relentless pursuit of self-improvement, are rooted in the separation from God. The critique is that earthly achievements and memories cannot provide ultimate fulfillment, stressing the necessity of God’s love and presence for true satisfaction.

3. How we can be brought home

The root cause of our human struggles lies in our fractured relationship with God, a relationship that can only be mended through costly forgiveness and repentance. God has provided a means for this healing through the sacrificial act of Jesus Christ on the cross, which allows us to be reconciled with Him. While we may still feel like exiles in this world, we can catch glimpses of our true home through worship, prayer, and fellowship, as we anticipate the day of complete restoration in the new heavens and new earth.



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