What Does The Word Say?

SERPENT IN THE TREE OF KNOWLEDGE“Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? And the woman said unto the serpent, 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.”

I imagine Eve was near the tree of good and evil maybe looking at it and wondering what there was about this tree that made it differ from the others. While there were many trees in the garden, for some reason this tree demanded her attention. What about this tree made it forbidden for her and her husband to take of it.

As she considers this tree, Satan, possessing the body of a serpent, speaks to her. He asks her to remember the words of God. “Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?” Satan tempts her to think not about what God has given but what God has withheld. He focuses her what is forbidden.

The first error is having a conversation with the devil at all. She was not obligated to give him an answer. But answer she did. Eve responded, “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.”

She begins recounting God’s words correctly, “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.” That is exactly what Jesus said. Her second error was that she adds something that God did not say, “Neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.” God did not say that.

Eve may have easily supposed that she would have to touch the fruit to eat it and therefore it would be forbidden to even touch this fruit. However, that is not what God said. The question was about what God said and not what she supposed. Eve had altered the word of God.

This is still a danger today. We have people attributing their thoughts and ideas as if they were the very words of God. God has spoken clearly and completely in the Bible. We must learn and obey what He said but we are not obligated to believe nor obey what man adds to it. We must be careful not to mix our assumptions in with God’s words.

I imagine that the serpent has a piece of the fruit of this tree in his hands. It seems that he was in a different form than serpents today since the fall confined them to slittering in the dust of the ground. So what Eve sees is someone touching the fruit of the tree and not dying. In Eve’s mind, there is the planting of the seed of doubt, not based on what God said but based on what she assumed.

We must be careful to know, believe, and tell only what God has said in His Word. Only His Words are inspired, inerrent, and infallable.

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