“And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.”
It is impossible for us, 6,000 years later, to get into the mind of the first man. For a start, he was created perfect, and we have no idea what it is like to be perfect or to have a perfect mind. Then again, given that he was perfect, we have difficulty in understanding why he would deliberately choose to disobey God and eat the fruit.
Most of the action in Genesis chapter 3 seems to concern Eve rather than Adam. How can we then say that Adam’s sin was important, when clearly Eve had sinned before him, and the devil had sinned before that? The reason is that Adam had a federal responsibility. He was our federal head. That is why, in Romans 5, Paul tells us that in Adam all die.
The devil’s sin was his own. Each angelic being was separately created, so they have no federal head. Eve’s sin was also her own, as she had been formed out of Adam’s side. But Adam represented all humanity. Eve was tempted by the devil in the form of the serpent. But Paul tells us that Adam was not deceived. In fact, Genesis 3 tells us that the woman gave some of the fruit to her husband who was with her.
We still don’t know why he did it, but we do know that it was Adam’s sin, as our federal head, that separated all of us from God.
Prayer: Thank You, Lord, that although we have been born in trespasses and sin, You can wash away our sin completely if we will trust wholeheartedly in You.
Author: Paul F. Taylor
Ref: Taylor, P.F. (2007), The Six Days of Genesis, (Master Books). Image: © Answers in Genesis, used with permission.