The beginning of the earth and mankind is certainly a story for us to know today for it counters all the philosophies and religions of our day. It is essential to know, because it is the foundation of all Christian teaching. If one does not believe in a literal Adam and Eve, a literal garden or a literal devil, they certainly cannot accept the fact of our being sinners in need of redemption. It is all based on what happened to the progenitors of the human race.
Those who do not believe that Moses wrote the Pentateuch disregard the evidence which influences their own view of the world and archaeology. Those who promote the idea that Moses could not be the author usually refuse to believe that there is a supernatural work of God in the world. That God cannot be the beginner or cause of all things. Thus, it would be foolish to believe all the historical information written about the creation of the world, the crossing of the Red Sea, God speaking to Moses, or even the historical evidence that Moses, a prophet of God, wrote the account in the first place is true. The whole idea is more of a story, a myth for a culture.
The evidence within the Pentateuch points to Mosaic authorship, since it clearly portrays Moses as the author of certain portions. “And Moses wrote all the words of the LORD” (Exodus 24:4)
“And the Lord said to Moses, ‘Write these words; in accordance with these words I have made a covenant with you and with Israel’” (Exodus 34:27, RSV). To these references many others could be added.
Not only does the internal evidence of the Scriptures make it clear that Moses wrote the Pentateuch, but other Old Testament books make Mosaic authorship clear. Joshua 8:32 refers to “the law of Moses, which he wrote.” Additional Old Testament references include I Kings 2:3, II Kings 14:6, and Joshua 23:6, which attribute to Moses the authorship of the Pentateuch.
Then we have testimony of the New Testament. The apostles said that “Moses wrote unto us” (Mark 12:19) as did the apostle Paul, who when speaking of a passage in the Pentateuch said, “Moses describeth” (Romans 10:5).
However, the issue as to the authorship of the first five books is once-and-for-all solved by the testimony of the God-man Jesus Christ. Jesus made it clear that Moses wrote these books (Mark 7:10; 10:3–5; 12:26; Luke 5:14; 16:29–31; 24:27, 44; John 7:19, 23).
In John 5:45–47, Jesus states, “Do not think that I will accuse you before the Father; the one who accuses you is Moses, in whom you have set your hope. For if you believed Moses, you would believe Me; for he wrote of Me. But if you do not believe his writings, how will you believe My words?” If Jesus is wrong then so is Moses wrong and there is no truth to be found in the Bible. If Moses is authentic as Jesus and the other inspired writers say, then so is the Genesis account. Then we are not dealing with a myth as evolutionists, humanists and skeptics say, but an accurate account of the history of earth.
Sin first originated in the heaven, it occurred before the fall of man as taught in Ez.28 and Isa.14. The once cherub over God’s throne became a fallen angel-prince. We don’t know exactly when this happened, he may have rebelled against God shortly after his creation, or it could have been millennia. This event in the world of the spirits/angels does not pinpoint the exact timing of the fall of Satan although it is readily accepted it occurred before the six days' of creation (though some put it in between the 6 days). The Genesis account by Moses does not give us the timing of when Satan came to man after his creation. We don’t know how long Adam and eve were in the Garden before Satan proceeded to tempt Eve. It could have been as short as days or maybe years, although the shorter seems more feasible for Satan’s advantage to have the couple transgress the divine command, but we just don’t know. We do know that God pronounced it all good after He completed the 6 days of creating, it is was a perfect environment of harmony and peace. That is until Satan shows up in the garden as a serpent and delivers a message challenging what God has said.
Satan watched as God spoke the 10 commandments of creation, as he said, “let there be” which was repeated 10 times in the creation account. As God began to move over a planet that had no physical life he brought light to separate the darkness (possibly the judgment he brought previously on Satan.) this light most believe was His own glory that would be able to sustain the life he was to make next until he put the sun moon and stars in place. Then dry land was separated out of the waters that were already present and there was water below and above covering our atmosphere. The trees and flowers were made in abundance on the third day, then sun the moon were then made to give light to sustain the life and it was immediately present. He then made all the creatures, birds animals, and gave them the ability to reproduce just as they were made. But there was nothing that could have authority over what was already made, so God created man in His own image. A creation of a higher intelligence than the creatures He already made at the end of the 6th day.
Here was a rival to Satan as God gave man dominion over the earth (Gen.1:28). The angels both good and evil were able to see how they were brought into existence. When God gave man dominion over the earth (specifically the Garden (Gen.2:15-16), it moved Satan to jealousy and his intention was to frustrate the will of God. It moved Satan to usurp the authority given to new and lesser creatures than himself.
God says he made man in His image and likeness. In Gen.1:26 we find both words image and likeness, In Gen.5:1 the word likeness is found. What does in his image mean. The words image and likeness are used interchangeably in the Scriptures. In Gen.9:6 the word image is used in reference to a person, someone unique and having value, the penalty for murder in Gen.9:6 was on the basis that the victim was made in the image of God. By destroying ones life it was an assault upon God’s creation and what he put in charge of the other creations on earth.
Before we can understand how man was made we need to understand the creator of man to know what we were made to be like. Man is not in the exact physical image of God, because God does not have a body God is Spirit (Jn.4:24) he is invisible. When it states we were created in His image it does not mean that God is a physical being and that we are like Him in that manner. In Deut.4:12 the Israelites saw no form of God, and they were prohibited to make any image of Him because God is incorporeal, He has no body He exists as eternal spirit. The image and likeness man is made in is a moral spiritual likeness with limited qualities like our creator. We are able to think, create, communicate etc.
This is why evolution is such an attack on God, not just because it denies His existence and influence on the universe but because it denies that mankind has an intrinsic value, it reduces us to be no more valuable than any other creature. We are just products of chance.
Both man and woman were made in the image of God. If this meant God’s image is physical, God would be both male and female since man and women were both made in the image of God. God does not have a literal body as we do, with reproductive organs and bodily functions as we Taking terms in their solid literal sense can sometimes make no sense at all, especially when they are not intended to be interpreted that way. It means we have a spiritual nature like God in a finite way. Man was given an eternal Spirit which can live on after the physical body dies, in this way we are created in the spiritual likeness of God.
Being made in someone’s image does not make them an exact duplicate. Paul preached the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. (2 Cor. 4:4), it is Christ alone who “is the express image of God (his person) (Heb.1) No prophet ever thought of themself as the express image of the invisible God, or that if you have seen them you have seen the father, they knew better. There are too many today who are exalting mans nature to be something the Scripture says it is not.
The intent of making man from the ground and from the life of God was to reveal the qualities of the Giver of life, his creator. The physical functions of man are to express the spiritual nature the invisible functions given by God. So we are created in God’s moral likeness. We were given in some manner limited capabilities compared to God’s unlimited capabilities. As we can see with the eye, it is like God seeing all things. As we are able to hear in a certain sound range God is able to hear all things. As we are aware of our surroundings, God is aware of all that happens. We are able to think ahead and plan before we do anything. We have rational reasoning. As we had arms made it was liken to God who by his might stretches out his hand metaphorically speaking and forms things he desires. Throughout the Old Testament there is used what are called anthropomorphism to describe God in some function or characteristic. This is figurative language describing a certain characteristic of God, it is describing his divine actions from a human viewpoint. For example there are the Scriptures such as the eyes of the Lord go to and through upon the earth. There are mention of his ears, feet, mouth, fingers, arms, and hands (Ps.8:3). None of these should be taken in the solid literal sense that God has a physical form as a human creature, these are meant to communicate something of his being in His activity.
God is a person, (a person meaning not human but having an identity, He is a being in his own category.) Therefore when man was created we too are a person; A person is identified as a self-conscious being, cognizant of its own existence, and the existence of others who also have a self-identity. The quality of being personal is that one has life and is aware of it.
God spoke His created things into existence but not man, being the last of his creatures made he personally fashioned him from the ground and breathed life into him. All the other creatures he made in abundance but He made only one human creature. Everything was prepared for man on earth before he arrived into existence. When God decided to make man He used no previous creation for an example, no animal or angel was used for an archetype. Man was not given the powers of the angels nor the freedom to move through the atmosphere as they can. He was created a little lower than the angels and as a creature was limited to earth and the natural laws such as the law of gravity. He was limited in his intelligence and power, though he had far greater capabilities than the other creatures. When Adam was created he was perfect creature of his species having no flaws.
God created the natural process that fashions our bones, veins, ligaments; knitting us together in the womb. We are dependent on God for both the physical and spiritual. Ps. 100:3 “It is he that made us not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.” Just like Adam who slept God made Eve from him, so ever since Adam every man (and woman) is dependent on his mother. So was set into place the creation order. 1 Cor. 11:8-9 “For man is not from woman, but woman from man. Nor was man created for the woman, but woman for the man.” This describes an ontological order, a creation ordinance of man over women. In creation, God made Adam first and then Eve was taken from his side to be his helper. Eve was made after Adam, not from the ground but from Adam himself. “She shall be called woman, Isha, a she-man, differing from man in sex and certain qualities the woman was to be a perfect resemblance of the man being neither inferior no superior, she was made with the same nature as he was. She was made from a small part of Adam that he once had authority over: it cost Adam a part of his own body to have Eve. In Genesis 2:22,23, where we find reference to Adam calling the female 'woman'. He says,”This is bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh”, or the same substance, a blood relation, of the same body. “She shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.”
It was a woman that was taken from the side of Adam to be a suitable mate, as Adam was made first. Women are called a “helper” to man, this is more than being an assistant, a “helper” (`ezer-help) meaning a co-worker. When it comes to women and the concept of submission in the Bible, it does not imply that she is inferior to man in any way, but she is ordained to have a different position in relation to man, each having distinct roles. Adam received her as his wife, and said, “This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.” So because she was “taken out of man” (Genesis 2:23), the man has the preeminence as he was the source of the helper, therefore we have both the principle and the position that “The head of the woman is the man.” In the same manner the head of man is Christ the Son of God who was the creator of Adam first, then woman.
He was created mature in mind and body and he was made with age, as was all of creation.
How did Adam become a human being. Gen.2:7 The Hebrew is nephesh chayah meaning living being. Nephesh does not mean a soul, as in a separate entity. The man that was formed from the ground became a breathing creature, having life. Because of the spirit breathed into him, he became alive. He had a unique personality all his own. Man then was made of two distinct parts physical and non- material, substantially made a tri-part being spirit, soul and body. Adam became a creature of two worlds, of earth by his natural body, of heaven by his spiritual nature. The image of God was directly given to man by the breathe of God that gave him life. Gen. 2:7 “And breathed into his nostrils the breath of life”-literally, lives. Adam was endowed with the property of continuing life and nature to his offspring.
After the fall Adam begot his first son Cain and other sons and daughters in his own image and likeness. All those who preceded from Adam and afterwards received a deformed, marred image of God along with a preserved image of Adam in our nature. In a like manner Jesus had resurrected from death is the first resurrected glorified man and is able to be the giver of new life to man to restore the image of God in man. Being the last Adam, He succeeded where the first one failed.
We have intrinsic value. We are valuable to God no matter what we do because unlike any other creature we retain the image of God in us, though it is corrupted. This is why He can still love us and does not eliminate us.
Every person no matter what ethnicity or religion is to be respected in this manner because they are made in God's image and Christ died for them; but we don't have to agree with their religion but we can respect them and care for them as human beings.
The Holy Spirit was given again so that the true image that man was made in would be restored to its original spiritual intent. But we are still not like Adam, as we have a fallen nature along with the new nature, and our bodies have yet to be redeemed and they are not like the original state that Adam had without sins affect. We do not live over 900 years old. God made all humanity in the image of God and everyone has the potential to be redeemed through Jesus Christ and be restored. The process of being made holy and conformed to the image of Christ is by the Holy Spirit changes each of us into the image of Christ yet keeps our personalities and individuality.
1 Cor.15:45-49 “And so it is written, “The first man Adam became a living being.” The last Adam became a life-giving spirit. However, the spiritual is not first, but the natural, and afterward the spiritual. The first man was of the earth, made of dust; the second Man is the Lord from heaven. As was the man of dust, so also are those who are made of dust; and as is the heavenly Man, so also are those who are heavenly. And as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly Man.” This is why man must be born again to live forever in God’s kingdom. That there will be a resurrection and the body that is put in the earth will be made alive again and transformed to be suitable for heaven. Our new body will be like the saviors in His resurrection. Those who are living when He comes will not die but be transformed immediately into new bodies that will have sin eliminated and all the consequences from sin will have no affect on them.
In God’s divine strategy who knows all things before they happen, man who became the lowest will be exalted the highest of all creatures even he angels. God had a contingency plan installed before the fall took place. That man who fell from his original estate will be exalted higher than the greatest angel there ever was (Satan) and will even be judge of the angels (fallen angels). This would be done by God Himself who descended into the world of man became like the original Adam before the fall and redeemed fallen mankind by his obedience. By keeping the law perfect and consequently dying on the cross for our sin God was able to redeem man back to his unfallen position, and even to a place that will be above from where Adam fell.
In the garden Adam and Eve possessed what is called unconfirmed creature holiness, but it was not his possession for an eternal state yet. Man was made in the image and likeness of God he was unmarred and had original righteousness. Man being the ruler over the earth and the other creatures was higher in intelligence and he alone had a relationship to his creator that no other creature enjoyed. But there was a need to be tested. So mankind was given the ability in our nature to choose. To sin or not to sin. God gave Adam specific instructions what he was and was not to do. So a simple test was given to see whether man will obey God or not.
He was also given dominion over the earth, specifically the garden (Gen.1:26; Ps.8:58; Heb.2:5-8) His responsibility was to cultivate (have dominion) to dress and keep the garden in the order it was made in (Gen.2:15). In this period before the fall the labor was easy the land yielded its crops easily. At this time he had in his state perfect fellowship with his creator, in the cool of the day, each afternoon God would come to the garden and speak with Adam. (Gen.3:8)
Man was first created alone, as one of a kind in his species, while the animals and creatures were created in numerous numbers of both male and female. In Gen. 2:18-22 by God bringing the beasts to Adam He gave him an opportunity to develop his intrinsic intellectual capacity, which constitutes a humans mind making him superior to the animal world. “Adam sees the animals, and thinks of what they are and how they look; and these thoughts formed into words. He is a creature gifted with the faculties both of reason and speech, able to give expression in the names that he gave them. Language is merely thoughts cast into articulate sounds or words for communication. Job 35:11Who teaches us more than the beasts of the earth, And makes us wiser than the birds of heaven?” (Adam didn’t call the stars by name God did. He was limited to the rule over the garden section God gave him).
When Adam named all the animals and saw what they were none there for him. God saw there was none suitable for him (Gen.2:18). So God put him to sleep and did an operation on him taking from his side bone and flesh, making another like him. Adam was made from the ground formed into a body and God gave him life by breathing into him His spirit. Eve was taken from Adam and he called her (Isha) woman, at first as they were one. So having a wife is a natural thing in the order of God. After the fall the woman is then called Eve as she became the mother of all living. As we inherit our physical features from our line, our sinful nature is to be passed on too, this is attributed to the man not the woman. Gen 2:18-22 The woman was created, not of dust of the earth, but from a rib of Adam, because she was formed for an inseparable unity and fellowship of life with the man.
God put man in the garden to tend to it. “This was like a park (Gen 2:8) paradise, by which it is rendered in the Septuagint, gives the more precise idea of a spacious enclosure-an extensive park, like those in which Eastern monarchs enclosed their palaces, and which abound with every species of trees, flowers, and garden culture, enlivened besides by numbers of choice animals, which are kept there for pleasure.”
God had pointed to one tree in the garden to present a test for man and woman. He did allow them the freedom to choose as was done in heaven by Satan before. God gave two commands to Adam and Eve to obey to prevent this from occurring. The commands God gave Adam were to be fruitful and multiply and keep the garden Gen. 1:28 and a do not command of not eating the fruit from the tree of knowledge Gen. 2:17. Two do’s, and one don’t commandment.
Eve is made after Adam and she too is instructed by God not to eat of the tree. The Bible makes it clear that she is aware of the commands instruction (Gen. 3:3). They can eat from all the different trees but one. There was no special property in this tree except that it was named as a test to train them to become mature in their obedience.
Man was on probation he needed to obey God, this centered mostly around the command thou shalt not eat of the tree of good and evil because when he eats it he will definitely die. This prohibition was given to Adam before Eve was taken from his side(Gen.2:16-17).
If Adam and Eve had passed the test it would have confirmed them in creature holiness, and his offspring would inherit a nature of holiness. (The angels had this occur in Lucifer’s rebellion. After one third rebelled they were confirmed in their decision never able to change back.) If Adam passed he would then have access to the tree of life and live forever as eternal life would have been given to him. But a temptation to disobedience came from an outside influence. From one who already fell the same way in heaven, by disobedience, pride. This particular fallen angel comes and delivers information contrary to what God has already spoken.
When Adam failed the temptation from the source of the Devil through Eve, it confirmed him in his change of nature, unholiness. Sin entered into his nature and spread to the offspring of all people. Now disobedience comes from our nature that is fallen from its original state. The first man was potentially the race of all people, our natural headship. Being the natural headship of humanity his actions did not only affect him as the individual, but of the race. If he was the last of the race and fell, he would not involve any other in his descent. But being the first of a race when he fell before he had any offspring, the whole race has fallen. As Paul says “in Adam all sinned”, because of his choice it changed the whole character and condition of mankind throughout all time. Just as Paul said a little leaven leavens the whole lump. (Gen 2:25) Only one sin made us all sinners but only Adam became a sinner by sinning. The sin nature affects the immaterial part of man, which consequently affects our outward actions. Death is the consequence of sin. This is the very reason why we need to be born again. Our dead spirit needs to be regenerated (Rom. 8:1, Gal. 5:24) by the Spirit of God. One is made alive spiritually to God and is able to have a vital relationship through Jesus Christ. We need a new nature.
Satan’s attack was on God himself as the kingdom of the earth was taken from Adams hand and Satan’s. Satan’s attack against man was fueled by his hatred toward God, not only by the hatred of the new human creatures that were placed in the garden, like a park and given dominion. His purpose was to divorce man from being in the will of God through disobedience to one command. Just as Satan had led the other angels to believe him and rebel, he would do the same for man.
God made the tree of life to grow in the midst of the garden, among all the other trees; by eating the fruit of this tree the immortality of Adam would had been secured. When Adam transgressed, he was expelled from this garden, and not permitted to eat of the tree of life; he became necessarily mortal, death came to him and all his offspring. He is then forbidden to eat of this tree he once enjoyed. This tree is secured and restored to man again in the true garden in heaven by the gospel -- the incarnation, death, and resurrection of Christ. In Rev.2:7 we see a parallel to this tree.
The tree of life is representative of immortality, and a final state of blessedness. Whatever it is it was to make the life of man perpetual. We find the tree of life is in the ultimate paradise, heaven, where those who obeyed the gospel on earth will live.
What are the trees? “The tree of life was also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil”(Gen. 2:9). Both were smack dap in the middle of this Edenic paradise. These were two literal fruit trees that did not have any inherent special properties but were used by God for examples, so they are named.
Some think the fruit of the trees in the garden had certain healthful qualities, rich in vitamins and minerals that caused the effects spoken of. The tree of life would have excelled all the others, containing all the nutrients of such high quality and quantity. The tree of knowledge contained poison that was immediately intoxicating. While this concept seems to fit for the tree of knowledge of good and evil, that eating its fruit may have had a reverse effect by some poison as some surmise, it does not make sense that it would bring death spiritually, and from one time only. Also I imagine there was no tree (tree of life) that improves life so much that one can live eternally just by eating it. The curse began by disobedience and eating the forbidden trees fruit and it brought death; of course Christ changed it at the tree of death he died on. This is the reason Adam was kept from the tree of life after his test being completed, he would have been confirmed in his fallen sinful state forever.
These trees were emblematic, symbols used for man's loyalty and obedience or disobedience. One of knowledge representing the law (do not touch or you will die) the tree of life represented Christ and eternal life He gives. If they obeyed they would have had the privilege to continue to eat from it. This one tree represented the rule of do not touch. Through breaking God’s law they learned the knowledge of good and evil.
The law-- forbidding to eat of the tree was now violated, it was still possible that Adam might partake of the other tree that he was already eating from; but now the sentence of death had been passed upon him it would bring him in a permanent condition, so he was forbidden to eat of the other tree
Gen 3:23-24 “Then the LORD God said, "Behold, the man has become like one of Us, to know good and evil. And now, lest he put out his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever"—23 therefore the LORD God sent him out of the garden of Eden to till the ground from which he was taken. 24 So He drove out the man; and He placed cherubim at the east of the garden of Eden, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to guard the way to the tree of life.”
Well, what is the meaning of this mysterious phrase, “the knowledge of good and evil”? It's talking about is experiential knowledge of good and evil in the sense of “good and evil consequences.” When Adam and Eve fell, they didn't receive the knowledge Satan promised. They did know that there was right and wrong by experience.
In other words, this was a tree of testing. As long as they obeyed the commandment they would continue to “know good” (i.e., no death, the presence of God, no hardships things would continue as they were intended.). But the day they disobeyed, they would “know evil” (in the sense of death, the loss of the presence of God, expulsion from the Garden, curses on them and on the earth, etc.)
Some say the fruit was sex that brought on the original sin. This came mostly through some Catholic theologians centuries past. If these are not interpreted as a literal trees or fruit, this would propose a big problem. Than neither every herb that yields seed any other tree or fruit can be taken literally. God gave the trees fruit as food for man. There is no need to interpret it in an allegorical manner, or find some hidden meaning in all this, they were used in a simple test. The tree of knowledge was a representation to impose a restraint on man, it was there to keep him dependent on God. What kind of fruit was it? It doesn’t matter, since the Bible makes no mention of it. So it must not have any real consequence for us today, this fruit may or may not still exist. What mattered was the consequence of disobeying and eating from the one tree God said not to eat from. While we are allowed to find the species of creature Satan used to cause the disobedience we are not allowed to find the fruit that God put a prohibition on.
(Gen 3:1-8) Satan did not approach them in the appearance of his true form of a celestial being, he came through a creature inferior to man. Adam and Eve had no concept of a foreign creature entering the garden to use another as a pawn so they were unguarded in this. But they could have no excuse for allowing a mere animal they were appointed to rule over to persuade them to break the command God gave.
What do we know of this creature? We do know that this creature was made by God and was pronounced good along with the rest of God’s creatures as they were made on the same day as Adam. It originally moved erect, because his punishment was to crawl on its belly (some think on all fours). Was the serpent endued with speech, and the gift of reason since he was carrying on a conversation disputing with Eve? Scripture states Adam had not found one animal comparable to himself or resembling himself, not one endowed with reason and speech like himself.
One alternative explanation is that some or all the animals had the capability to speak. We do know that certain creatures are intelligent and can be taught to speak such as parrots. But snakes (if it was a snake and not some other type reptile) have no organs for speech, although they hiss. So this is a supernatural event from Satan that would be like channeling today. Satan could certainly speak through the serpent in the Garden, as he spoke through Peter to try and keep Jesus from the cross (Mt.16). Satan entered Judas and did his betrayal directly to Jesus as he faced him off in his arrest.
Some believe the serpent is not a literal creature, but a figurative serpent; not an animal, but a spiritual being. This would make no sense since God cursed this creature to crawl on the ground. The great dragon, is identified with “the ancient serpent called the devil and Satan.” The word for dragon is Leviathan in Hebrew, it is used in the Greek Septuagint and in Rev.12. This makes it intriguing since the word dragon is what we now call dinosaurs. We know from the text that a spirit being was present and active, not just a mere animal that was a beast of the field. Satan was not permitted to have direct contact with man; he was limited in his deception. His way to deception was through the senses and in the way of speech. Just as God limited his attack on Job he did the same with Adam. For if he could he would have killed him, as Jesus said he was a lair and a murderer from the beginning (John 8:44), as he later instigated the death of Abel through his brother Cain.
Gen 3:1 “Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made.” The Hebrew word for subtil is `aram; it is translated prudent and twice crafty. It has the idea of smoothness to be cunning (usually in a bad sense): crafty [counsel], be prudent. He was more cunning than anything on the ground because there was spiritual counterpart to all this.
The common word for Serpent is Nachash means upright serpent; a primitive root; properly, to hiss, i.e. whisper a (magic) spell; generally, to prognosticate: divine, enchanter, (use) enchantment, learn by experience. This is where we get the saying the hiss of the serpent. It is the same word nechoshet which means bronze in Hebrew in Numbers 21:9 nahash nehoshet 2 Kings 18:4)
It means shiny as brass upright creature, he had glory, and the word has a connection to divination. The creature had a mesmerizing effect on Eve. The Hebrew nachash has been traced to its root word, one means to whisper or hiss as in soothsayers, the other translation means to shine related to brass. In other words the real serpent within this earthly creature that approached Eve was the shining one, his beauty awed her and she listened to his whisperings. In Isa. 8:19 “And when they say to you, “Seek those who are mediums and wizards, who whisper and mutter,” should not a people seek their God? Should they seek the dead on behalf of the living?” These people gave themselves over to spirits that were supposedly deceased who would communicate through them sometimes speaking strange sounds. As snakes hiss, so were the sounds of these ancient channelers. It is no wonder that Paul states in 2 Cor.11:3: “But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.” What the simplicity Paul refers to goes back to the original state of man on the earth. Paul then warns of another Jesus, another spirit and another gospel. If you have a Jesus that is not about forgiving your sins, you have another Jesus. Scripture teaches that all of us like sheep have gone our own way. Jesus said He is the only way. It is God’s way. We are to be devoted God alone and allow His rule to be our only way of life, not pursuing our own will or ways or another way. Another spirit that is received that is not the Holy Spirit can lead one into false interpretations of the Bible. Another Gospel that they did not hear from him but if received they will entertain it.
(This is a literal event- literal tree literal people an a literal serpent. It is mentioned several times in the New Testament Rom. 5:21, 16:20; 1 Cor.15:21; 2 Cor.11:3-4; 1 Tim. 2:14). There is no way to know today exactly which creature this was, anymore than to know what the fruit of the forbidden tree was. There are various Serpents the asp, cobra, viper and many contain a poisonous bite that is life-threatening (Deut. 8:15), but it may not even a snake like we have today.
Gen.3:1-6 The Serpent said to Eve “Has God indeed said? You shall not eat of every tree of the garden” These are the first false words the woman ever heard, that were ever spoken. It’s not that much of a stretch to understand her innocence toward evil having no experience with it before this. The question that often comes up is how unusual was this? This creature is one that Adam would have been familiar with as he named all of them on the 6th day. Eve could have often seen this creature walk and talk, and this is one explanation why she is not surprise when he confronts her in a language.
The real serpent was heard by them through an inferior creature. The voice Eve heard was more ancient than the recent creatures made. The creature that Adam was to rule over was used to bring his ruin. Satan certainly used a vehicle that was suitable for his nature. I have always wondered why she did not think it strange that a creature was speaking to her. She was mesmerized by the light of this creature, the word Lucifer comes from the latin lux meaning light bearer the description of the son of the morning. Before his fall he bore the name of son of the morning an important star. After the fall, some believe Jesus took this title upon himself as the bright morning star; as he took the title of son of man on later in his incarnation and the last Adam. Many names unperfected by man are applied to Jesus as He fulfilled the roles and offices of prophet, priest and King perfectly.
Satan questioned whether it were a sin or not, to eat of this tree. He did not reveal his design at first, but he put forth a question, which did seem innocent enough “has God said?” We must consider that it was not just the words said but how it was said as well. Here was the beginning of her fall: “doubt is the father of sin.” “Why is any tree withheld from you? Are you sure He said this?” This became a test of her faith, as God had already spoken on this matter. All she needed to do was say I’ll obey what I don’t fully understand, and it would have been over, he would have left but she stood there in conversation with him. No one is safe, if they stand still and enter into a discussion with the tempter or temptation. What worked then still works today. Satan tempted Eve, that by her he might tempt Adam, and it worked.
For us we need to recognize when those same doubts come in that want to have us disobey. Are you sure is the serpents whisper. We need to turn away and be faithful to the Word of God. This means knowing the word sometimes for our very survival. It certainly was this serious for Eve.
Gen 3:1-2 In her discussion with this serpent Eve responds “We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden; but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.” Eve was aware of the prohibition, fully understanding its meaning; as she responded adding, “neither shall ye touch it,” many theologians believe this proved by this very exaggeration that it appeared too stringent even to her, and therefore that her love and confidence towards God were already beginning to waver.
Satan will always influence an apostasy from the Word of God that is spoken in its context. He distorts its correct meaning. Eve was duped into the believing the message, not considering it may not be from God, all she needed to do was test it. As the serpent conversed with her correcting her errors, she assumed it lead her into a right knowledge of the divine will; that her disobedience would become an advantage.
V.4 Then the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die.” This is the first lie recorded in the scripture. And this is why Jesus attributes to Satan the title the father of lies (Jn.8:44), he is the source of all lying. What we find in the garden is a lie that is now taught in liberal seminaries; the word of God is not exact, nor is it to be regarded as absolute truth, it does not need to be obeyed.
It was a new thought introduced about the tree of knowledge of good and evil, that death would not result from the eating of this trees fruit. A direct challenge to what God said. Satan was the first positive thinker, “You will surely (positively) not die.” The creature insinuates the impossibility of her dying as if she is already immortal in her body. Can anyone doubt that reincarnation was a religious continuation to this lie when considering the truth of this exchange. Assuring people as the serpent did that there is no end to their physical life you will be recycled. We still hear this lie said in various ways today. No need to discard something that works, Satan is very pragmatic, if it works he keeps it. Because it does not have to have the standard of God’s truth only that it work
Satan then moves to an affront to the truth of God V.5 “For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” The very same goal he had for himself, to be like God.
The Devil attacks God’s motives by challenging the prohibition--”For God knows...your eyes shall be opened, you will be like god...”insinuating God is hiding some secret knowledge from them, to keep them from being like him. The whole point of the temptation to Eve was to convince her of something that was not possible as possible; to offer to her what she did not have, but needed. It was the same way he fell--wanting to be like God. And what the Devil is offering is the same thing he offers people today in various flavors--the hope of eating from a forbidden tree and receiving esoteric, mysterious “knowledge” or gnosis secret knowledge. The promise is that “you shall be like god,” is a promise numerous cultic and occultic group offer. It also is the beginning of the religion of evolution as the Devil said you will go to new level, you are advancing, you will become something you are not, like God.
Satan's appeal was that the knowledge of good and evil is what makes God who He is. If she eats from this tree she too will have this knowledge and it will make her like God. Do it this way and you will have power you will be in possession of what he has. If not you will not receive it. In her eyes, this tree looked like all the rest, so she starts to consider why it is off limits. It became a fruit to be desired to make one wise, and surpassing the importance of all the other trees. The same sin that Satan fell by becomes the bait for him to use on Eve and all of mankind today. That we can be self -sufficient and be like God, have control of our own lives and destiny. It is founded in Pride.
Lucifer when he fell became the devil (accuser) and was from the beginning a murderer,. Jesus said to the religious leaders who did not believe him “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning.” (John 8:44). Satan’s beginning commenced when he was motivated by pride before this he was Lucifer? He essentially murdered Adam and Eve. He also was involved in the murder of their son with Cain killing Abel as he wanted to be accepted as righteous by his own merit, the work of his hands and not the blood sacrifice they were told to obey. When Adam and Eve ate they died immediately, they died spiritually and they later died physically. Satan's plan was to draw Eve into dialogue when she was alone. Satan took advantage by finding her near the forbidden tree. They were told not to eat the forbidden fruit, not that they could not come near the forbidden tree. The devil did not take it off the tree, and put it into her mouth, he confused Eve, “beguiled” her. She saw with the eye: it was good for food – the lust of the flesh, a delight to the eyes – the lust of the eyes, desirable to make one wise –to be like their maker- the boastful pride of life. Desiring what was forbidden, she took it and once it was in her hand she ate it (Gen. 3:6-8).
The Devil’s work was done in an instant, the bite of the fruit was as deadly as the bite from a poisonous snake. Both their eyes were open and although they did not physically die something did happen on the inside, it changed their nature to sin. The fruit tastes the same today as it did then, it is pleasant to the eyes but boy does it have a kick. It ruins us Eve sinned by deception as 1 Tim 2:14 states “And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression.” She gave also to her husband with her (Gen.3:6). Paul says that Adam, who was “with her” was not beguiled. That is, he was “not deceived”, yet still went ahead and ate too! Perhaps he did it out of sympathy and loyalty towards his wife, being willing to commit spiritual suicide lest she be left alone in her misery. It is clear that he was not right next to her when she was tempted, but Adam partook fully knowing what he was doing. She gave it to him, and he accepted. Regardless, this made him more culpable than her, even though the woman was “in the transgression” too (I Tim 2:14).
Eve partook of the tree not knowing what she did, being deceived. Adam knew exactly what He was doing. Today you have two kinds of people who in similar fashion take of the tree. Those who are deceived like Eve, and those who do it by choice convinced it is the right thing. Satan does not care how he gets them to eat of it as along as they do.
When Adam followed his wife’s advice and he ate next. Gen. 3:7: “And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.”
The immediate results were guilt and shame, the same feelings we have today when we know we have done something wrong. While Adam and Eve had a perfect conscience it was not marred. How did they know they were naked? The joy they had and the relationship was severed and they felt misery. The felt guilt and shame no longer clothed with the righteousness form a holy nature and a clear conscience.
Something foreign to their nature was now introduced that immediately had an affect. From this fall they learned ethical discernment, they knew the difference between good and evil and it was not what the Devil said it would be. It never is, since he always lies. It did not bring them knowledge of good and evil as God knows it, but in an experiential sense, as the devil knows it. They became like the tempter, they understood in some small way what their disobedience had brought them, the peace and harmony they once had was now gone. This affected their open relationship with God who came each late afternoon to fellowship with them.
Gen 3:8-10 ‘And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden. And the LORD God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou? And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.”
The Lord came as he always did, but he did not yell “Where are you?” The Lord was well aware of their attempt to hide themselves from him, so he spoke as for them to come out from hiding. When God asked where are you, it was for Adam to understand something had changed in his relationship with him. The question was to reveal what sin had done to him. Of course he could not hide from the presence of God who sees all and knows all.(Ps.139:7-8) Now instead of meeting Him they hid from him. Adam and Eve they were thinking thoughts they hadn't thought before, instead of anticipating God showing up, they hide. We can relate to this in some fashion today when as believers we sin and our conscience becomes immediately stained. We are then ashamed to approach God even though we have His promise that He will not only forgive us but cleanse us, we need faith.
Previously they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed. From the consequence of the eating of the fruit they became conscious of something inside that they though could be covered up from the outside. Their first reaction “they sewed the leaves of the fig,” which were probably wrapped round them as the Scripture calls it a covering. These leaves were intended to conceal their whole persons from observation. Ever since then man has been sowing fig leaves, dressing ourselves up in different forms to prove our goodness and hide our shame.
Adam confesses that he was afraid of God, because he was naked. God asks who told you were naked?” And asks if he “ate from the tree which I commanded you that you should not eat?” There is an instinctive hiding of his thoughts from God in this very speech. He confesses his nakedness by the fact of his having eating of the forbidden fruit: “The woman” gave me of the tree, and “I did eat.” He shifts the blame to his helpmate, which in reality he was blaming God. You gave me the woman, if you didn’t maybe this wouldn’t have happened. But Adam was more to blame because he still had a choice that she did not exercise.
Verse 13.Then God turns to the woman asking what is this you have done” she confesses the serpent deceived her “I did eat- devoured it up. The woman makes a similar confession pointing to the source of her temptation. She now understands that the serpent “beguiled her.” Eve turns the blame on the serpent. [nasha'- to beguile, to deceive a) (Niphal) to be beguiled b) (Hiphil) to beguile, to deceive c) (Qal) utterly (infinitive)].
Adam excused his sin and blamed Eve. Eve excuse her sin, and lay the blame on another, the serpent, someone she was ill equipped to resist. Adam and Eve who were operating by their spiritual nature prior to the test, now have the flesh as the ruling component of their nature after the fall.
It is here begins the lineage of lies, the blame game starts, as they told from one to another. Adam blames the woman for eating the fruit and the woman blames the serpent for her eating it, despite that she contended the truth with him before she handled the fruit. They did not want to be honest and take responsibility for their disobedience, we are no different today. Ever since the devil deceived Eve there has been deception in the world and honesty is something we have to work at to have.
When a child does something wrong and their parent asks them what happened and they lie they are repeating the Adam and Eve syndrome. But this was no earthly parent, this was God their creator and the disobedience was much more serious.
The true source of the temptation was not a new offender, but an ancient one. He is right there as God addresses them first. Surely he wanted to be near enough to see and hear the Lords reaction to what had transpired by his deception. Certainly he did not want to be judged further than he already had been, but the lord God turns to him and begins to judge where the sin began. There was judgment in the beginning of the earth in the garden, judgment on the earth with Noah, judgment on cities with Sodom and Gomorrah and there will be the judgment of nations and people when Christ comes back
The judgment -(The curse) Gen. 3:14-19 “Upon thy belly shalt thou go.” This is expressive of the lowest stage of degradation to which a spiritual creature can be sunk. God speaks to this creature and confines it to crawl in the dust where before it stood upright. It is cursed above all the other creatures made. the serpent would be made low groveling on its belly and “Dust shalt thou eat.” Animals have at least feet to elevate them above the dust; the serpent does not have even feet. Other animals elevate the head in their natural position above the soil: the serpent lays its head naturally in the soil, and can be said to eat the dust, as the saying goes another bites the dust.
As man was taken from the dust he will return to it. Death will now be part of mankind’s cycle of existence. As the serpent took the dominion of man so he could rule- he too is confined to crawl in the dirt-- a fitting exile to a creature that is now the ruler of this world..
Adam had never seen another human or animal die, not in a natural death or in an accident since He and Eve were the only two humans alive. So he did not know what death actually was. Today we all have a natural instinct of death and want to preserve our life. The fear of the unknown, it comes from Adam. Rom. 5:12: “Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned”
There was no divine healing for Adam and Eve only judgment with mercy included. God did not destroy Adam and Eve nor did He reverse the effects. Instead He promised He would send one that would later on in history destroy the Devils hold on us eventually removing him from any influence over mankind. He used what had happened and would do the greatest salvage event known in history.
Gen.3:15 “I will put enmity between you and the woman And between your seed and her seed” God addresses the criminal behind the creature pronouncing his future doom and mankind’s future hope. The spiritual enemy of mankind will not always rule but eventually be defeated.
This prospect of a seed, a godly seed, at enmity with the Devil, became a hope to our first parents who were now under judgment. It gave them hope in the future and lessened their breach of relationship with God. Within God’s judgment was grace. God looked at the whole panorama of the human species not just at Adam to bring his redemption. They will continue to see the effects of the sin played out in their two future sons but within it there will be hope.
The conflict of the two seeds- God promises through the female line the messiah will come, having one human parent. With this comes the concept of a supernatural conception. Here the woman who is to bear the seed. And this seed is to bruise the serpent's head; undoing what had he had done to man, reversing the penalty of death. This life was therefore to come by the woman. What came through the woman to man (deception) would be reversed through a woman (truth) and by a man. A certain man that will be conceived without the aid of a man.
Gal 3:16: “Now to Abraham and his Seed were the promises made. He does not say, “And to seeds,”" as of many, but as of one, “And to your Seed,” who is Christ.” V.19: “What purpose then does the law serve? It was added because of transgressions, till the Seed should come to whom the promise was made”
This is called the protevangelium, “first gospel,” the announcement of a struggle, perpetual antagonism, wounds on both sides, and eventual victory for the seed of woman. The plan of salvation was before the earth was created? As he was the lamb slain before the foundation of the world. God knew this would all happen and made a provision prior to it. What happened in Genesis 3:15. God pronounced the way it would end.
“He shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel?” The seed of the woman here is an individual who will come in a deadly conflict with the individual tempter of Adam. This phrase points to some paramount descendant of the woman, who is going to be bruised someway in his encounter, but will gain a victory over the adversary of man but crushing the head which is where the bite of the serpent is. God had announced His defeat and how it would be accomplished. The final doom of Satan will take place through the Seed of the woman. This pronouncement began the opposition of hatred from Satan toward mankind and not just two individuals.
The existence of this war between Satan and man can explain much of the devastation in our human history. For Adams transgression was well known by the godly Job 31:33 “If I have covered my transgressions as Adam, By hiding my iniquity in my bosom.” Job learned learned well about the battle behind the scenes as God allowed Satan to be loosed in his life for a time.
Satan knew he would eventually be defeated through the means of a child that should be born of the human race. From that time forward he has attempted to frustrate or prevent this event from taking place. Satan tries to preempt this individual in various ways through our history. At various times He has attacked with the intention to destroy the line of the promise. In order to destroy any possibility of fulfillment. Such as in Egypt when Pharaoh was moved to kill all the Hebrew boys to stop the deliverer from coming. Moses was only a type of him who would come to deliver all people out of sin not who would follow the Messiah not just the Hebrew people out of Egypt.