Was there evil in the Garden of Eden?
The Serpent v.1
“The serpent (nachash) was more crafty than any wild animal which God had created.” Apparently the serpent wasn’t even categorized as a wild animal. The serpent was unique, a living being separate and distinct, but in a very negative way.
Lying Lips v.2-5
When the woman lied (or repeated the man’s lie) and told the serpent that she was not even allowed to touch the tree, she had not yet eaten the fruit. She hadn’t gained the knowledge of good and evil. So where did this notion to lie come from if the fall of man (from eating the fruit) had not yet occurred? The serpent began the assault on God’s character by telling the woman that God is a liar. He plants a seed of doubt in the woman’s mind. The rest was up to her.
Natural Inclinations v.6
It was the woman herself who saw that the tree was: 1) good for food > lust of the flesh 2) pleasing appearance > lust of the eyes 3) desirable for making one wise > pride of life [**see 1 John 2:16] What she was seeking most was wisdom. The words of King Solomon reflect what the people experienced here: “For in much wisdom is much grief; the more knowledge, the more suffering.” [Ecclesiastes 1:18]
**see note: : yetzer hatov & yetzer harah
Shame & Blame Game v.7-13
They became conscious of guilt as soon as they disobeyed God’s command. They tried to cover up their naked shame. Instead of taking responsibility for their actions they pointed the finger and blamed others.
Cast Down v.14
Where was the serpent? In the Garden of Eden, a holy place. This is an example of the Garden being a parallel of heaven. Christianity teaches of a being referred to as lucifer, (Latinized word for “morning star” or “shining one), in heaven who rebelled against God and was cast down to earth, here we have this serpent different from all the other creatures walking upright in the Garden, living in the presence of God…now the serpents form changed and is cast out of the Garden. The Reality of Duality at work. Separation of good (tov) and evil (rah) / Separation of kingdom of light (owr) and kingdom of darkness (choshek)
Prophecy of Seed v.15
[God speaks to serpent] “I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head and you shall bruise His heel.” NKJV Here, we get just a peek at God’s plan for restoring humanity to Himself. It is much easier for us today to understand that the Seed of the woman spoken of is Messiah Yeshua. The seed of the serpent are the spiritual evil workings of HaSatan / yetzer harah / a spirit of disobedience [**see John 8:44].
Accountability for Actions v.16-19
The woman was condemned for her sin, to a state of sorrow in pregnancy and in child rearing, and subjection to her husband. Can it be because she ate the fruit of the tree to satisfy her lusts that she would endure bitter pain? Was it because she lured her husband to sin that she would then be subjected to his authority? “Adam turned his back on the voice of God, to follow his wife in eating that which God ordered him to abstain. The woman sinned because she acted independently of her husband, disdaining his leadership, counsel, and protection. The man sinned because he abandoned his leadership and followed the wishes of his wife. In both cases, God’s intended roles were reversed.” [MacArthur Study Bible]
Naming Eve (Havah / Chavvah, “life”) v.20
Now being condemned to die for their sin, and after God made His declarations…we see Adam exercise his authority in naming his wife and calls her Chavvah, which literally means “life” or “life-giver.” Although they would eventually face death, Adam is celebrating his wife’s femininity and hopeful for the future generations that will come.
Covered & Driven Out v.20-24
The coverings that Adam and Havah made were not good enough to cover sin…because it came from them. So God provided a covering of skin, which would have been the first bloodshed of an innocent to cover for their sins. God separated the humans that had sinned from the Tree of Life by driving them out of the Garden. How is this an act of mercy?