Read: Genesis 2:7-17
There is confusion in the Garden of Eden. God has told Adam that he may not eat of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil (Gen. 2:16), but that was BEFORE God created Eve (Gen. 2:21). From the Bible we don’t have evidence that God spoke to Eve before “The Fall”, (although that seems unlikely to me). So when “The snake” comes along and undermines Eve’s trust in God, she is a bit vulnerable. She has apparently heard the prohibition not to eat the forbidden fruit from Adam, not from God. That means the “threat of death” was relayed to her from Adam also. So when the snake tells her that’s not true, you won’t die, God just doesn’t want you to become “like Him”, she bites (yep, that’s a bad pun). But before she does Eve explains to the snake, “we must not even touch it!” (Gen 3:3). But in God’s words to Adam (Gen. 2:16), touching the fruit is not prohibited.
It’s like the game “telephone”. In a circle of people someone begins a message to the person next to them, that person repeats the message to the person next to them, and so forth, until the circle is completed. The interesting part is how the message changes by the time it comes “full circle”. In Genesis : God tells Adam, Adam tells Eve, and Eve tells the snake, but the message has changed. There is no original prohibition against touching the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Some (very conservative) Bible commentators actually suggest that the original sin was that Eve ADDED to God’s word. I disagree. I can envision the snake using that confusion to convince Eve, “You won’t die if you eat it. See, I’m touching it and I haven’t died!”
So Eve was persuaded, and then she got Adam to try it too. For me, Adam can’t really blame Eve, after all, Adam heard the rules directly from God. Confusion led to temptation, which led to transgression, which led to blame. Then God teaches a BIG life lesson. This is the spiritual truth being taught; this is the real takeaway for us: There are consequences to our choices and to our actions. That’s a very important life lesson and a great spiritual truth; it’s one we all must learn in life. It was true, “in the beginning”, and it is still true today.
Pastor Rob Nystrom