The tree of good and evil in the garden of Eden Gen 2:9
Genesis contains the record of man’s disobedience to God, the most important story for all to understand why the world is the condition it is in. It becomes the main understanding of why there is a gospel. The tree of knowledge of good and evil was near the tree of life in the garden where Adam and Eve were made from and occupied. The command was a test of obedience to our first parents by which they would be children who obey God or break his simple command.
It was Adam who was directly told by God not to eat of this tree: this prohibition was given to Adam before Eve was taken from his side (Gen.2:15-17). When God said to Adam You will die, Adam had no idea what this was - he had never seen death. But he would experience from his disobedience.
God allowed them freedom to choose as was done previously in heaven by Lucifer who became Satan by his wrong choice. God gave two ‘do’ commands to Adam and Eve, be fruitful and multiply and keep the garden (Gen. 1:28) and a one ‘do not command’ to not eat the fruit from the tree of knowledge (Gen. 2:17). Two do’s and one don’t commandment, life was simple then.
In this garden ‘out of the ground’ the LORD God made every tree grow that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. Both these trees also had food that could be eaten. However these two trees were distinguished from the others. the tree of life in the midst of the garden was designed to be a symbol, a sign, or emblem of immortality. "the tree of the knowledge of good and evil," is self explanatory by its name. God had separated this one tree in the garden from all the others naming it. This is the one tree Adam and Eve was forbidden to eat.
Both trees were near each other, they grew in the middle of the garden, among all the other trees of this Edenic paradise. Both trees edible fruit which is not identified. These fruit trees did not have any inherent special properties for health or poison but were emblematic, so they are named accordingly (Gen. 2:9).
Some imagine, that this tree contained a poison, Adam and Eve the keepers of this garden were to abstain from the fruit of a tree whose fruit contained a poison, even in the smallest amount, to bring the end of their life. And the other tree of life to give them the ability to live forever.
The Bible says that God pronounced everything good after the 6 days of creation, the fact is the fruit of the tree did not contain any poison. The corruption of man’s nature to become sinful was not in the fruit eaten from the tree, it was in the act of disobedience. That was the poison that brought death. Thus the severe penalty was produced over time showing Gods grace.
It took an outsider to trick Eve to begin to look at it and the longer she looked the more he was able to speak and convinced her it was safe. After she ate, she then told Adam who was nearby to eat from it with her (after she already ate) the lie of the intruder (the serpent) was successful.
Gen 3:6 “ So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate.”
Immediately their eyes were open and they saw things differently. Shame and guilt came immediately, for their nature was changed. They tried to cover themselves with leaves and hide from their creator, which was useless.
The tree did not cause them to sin but to disobey God and partake set in motion their eventual death because of her sin of listening to the serpent and his sin of listening to her.
The one tree (knowledge of good and evil) represented the rule of ‘do not touch,’ representing the breaking of law (do not eat of it or you will die). The tree of life represented Christ and the eternal life God freely gives. If they obeyed they would have had the privilege of continuing to continually eat the fruit of the tree of life they were partaking in staying in the garden, the immortality of Adam and Eve would have been secured. But instead they were immediately banished from the garden they were made from the ground in, and were prevented to reenter by an angel at the one and only entrance.
Not only was bodily death introduced to their next offspring and all afterward but bodily disorder, suffering, disease and more disobedience as time went on.
It was Eve who was tricked, but for a host of reasons, Adam took of it cognizant of the penalty and so he (who the source of the woman) is to blame.
Rom. 5:12 “ Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men”… v.15 “For if by the one man's offense many died, much more the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one Man, Jesus Christ, abounded to many.”
This is why the New Testament teaches the wages of sin is death. That is what we earn as live our life naturally because we have this condition of being sinful from Adam.
What we need to understand God did not leave mankind in this corrupt condition but sent a remedy, the solution through Jesus Christ, His only Son. That is what everyone needs to know now.