God wants us to know who He is. He wants us to fully understand His heart, His mind, His character and His intentions. God has always intended that there should be clear and open communication between Himself and his children so that we can mature, that we can grow up to be like Him.
We are told that, at the beginning, God walked with Adam in the Garden and that they talked “face to face” – Adam clearly seeing and understanding his Father. That was how God’s creation worked – at the start.
But, up pops the devil! Now, if God’s main intention is for us to clearly see Him, to fully understand Him, to completely know Him, what do you suppose the Devil had set as his first priority? Of course, it was to make sure that we did not see, did not understand, did not know the fullness of God. But the devil realized that he could not completely erase the presence of God from all of creation so he had to settle for causing us to misunderstand. If he could get us to know just a little bit, and if most of that was not really true, then, by lies, deceit and doubt, he could easily manipulate us so that we would wind up living an ungodly and sinful life.
God told Adam, “…don’t eat the apple. If you do eat the apple – you will die.”
The Devil came to Eve and convinced her that the words that God had spoken didn’t really mean what God said they meant.
The Devil said to Eve, “Did God really say that?”
Eve replied with, “Well, of course He said it. I was there, I heard Him say it!”
Then Satan, as an expert in his craft, started his lies with, “Yeah, He said that but what He really meant was….”
The subtlety of Satan’s lie was in the fact that he didn’t try to convince Eve that God had not said that she would die but he used the things that she did not know to cast doubt on the things that she did know. The things that Satan said were actually true, in and of themselves, but by leaving out one key piece of information the entirety of what he said became a lie.
God’s definition of the word “die” (as when He said, “…you shall surely die”) had three parts;
– your physical body that came from the Earth will cease to exist as a body and will turn back into the elements of the Earth.
– your spiritual body that came from Me will remain as a spiritual body and will return to Eternity from whence it came.
– neither your physical nor spiritual body will ever stand in my presence but will be eternally separated from God who created them.
Eve knew about physical bodies – she had one. She knew about spiritual bodies – she had one of those, too. What she didn’t know was “death” – death had never happened. She had never died, nothing else in the Garden had ever died and, of course, there was no one else around to tell her about dying.
Eve also knew about eating – she had done that. She knew about the apple – she could see it hanging there on the tree. What she didn’t know was “the knowledge of good and evil” – neither she, Adam nor any of the animals had ever eaten the apple before so she didn’t really know what would happen.
Satan used the things Eve did know to change the definition of the things she didn’t know. When Satan said to her, “If you eat you will become like God,” he was acknowledging the truth of things that Eve knew God had said. Things such as; a) God wants His children to grow up to be like Him, b) God does not have a physical body, c) God lives in Eternity d) God knows all things. Satan purposely left out a few minor details such as; a) separation from God, b) hellfire and brimstone, c) eternal torment.
So, Eve ate the apple, not out of rebellion or defiance, but because she had been convinced that “to die” would be a good thing.
She knew the right word, she just had the wrong definition.