The first question God ever had to ask man was, "Where are you?" (Gen 3:9.) Of course God knew where Adam and Eve were. God was not ignorant. It was not an answer God needed to hear for His own edification and knowledge. Rather it was a question designed to help man see where he had gone. It was a question which would cause the man to begin to understand the relationship he had with God.
Adam and Eve had committed a terrible wrong. The relationship they had with God, up until there sin, had been an absolutely perfect relationship. They had a relationship which apparently had given them the opportunity to walk and talk with God among the paths and shadows of the trees in the Garden of Eden. The Godhead had created them in His own image and He loved them so much.
God had created man to worship and adore Him. But, at the same time He had given them choice. The choice God gave man was to do right or wrong. It is apparent the very first time man was confronted with doing wrong that He did just that -he sinned- thus breaking the beautiful and perfect relationship man had with God.
God is perfect and the only way one can be in Godís presence is to be perfect. Godís justice demands perfection. And so, man in his fall, in his sin became imperfect, disappointing God so very much. From the text it appears there was not much time to elapse before God asked man the crucial question, "Where are you?"
Rather than a question of dread, it must also be viewed as a question and maybe more importantly a question of love. You see before man can have the kind of relationship with God that will last an eternity, man must know where he is and recognize the lost condition he is in without coming into contact with the blood of Godís son, Jesus Christ and his death, burial and resurrection (Rom 6:1-4; Gal 2:20; 3:27).
"Where you are" without Jesus is lost. But, "God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son" (Jn 3:16) that we can become perfect (Heb 13:20-21). "Where are you" right now? Are you a Christian? Are you walking in the light of Christianity producing other Christians through your example, your words, and your actions?