Those of you who have children will appreciate the reaction you get at times when telling your children NOT to do something. Why is it, that as soon as they are instructed not to do something, that “something” suddenly becomes their obsession? I have learned over the years that my children require supervision almost constantly, regardless of their age. Leaving them on their own downstairs while I write, read or take a nap is like letting a bunch of wild racoons into the house. I love them, and they are crafty.
So when I made cookies and asked my kids not to eat any because they were for a special event, I am reminded of the story of Adam and Eve and the Garden of Eden, so I tell my kids the story of the Forbidden Fruit:
The following is my personal interpretation from reading the Bible (both the King James and NLT)…
The talking snake (Genesis 3)
The serpent, one of the creatures that God made, is referred to as more “subtil” than any of the other creatures. I take this to mean that the serpent was kind of sly, and maybe even a little devious. This serpent says to Eve, the woman created from Adam’s rib and Adam’s wife (called Eve because she was the mother of all living), “you can eat from any tree in the garden right?”. Eve replies by explaining to the serpent that every tree in the garden except the tree of knowledge of good and evil can be eaten from. She went on to explain the expected result of eating from this tree was death. The serpent told Eve that it was unlikely that she would die from this act. In fact, he stated, they were more likely being told not to eat of this tree because God knew that they would be like gods themselves having this knowledge. Eve was tempted by the serpent, and the forbidden fruit. She ate from the tree and shared it with Adam, who also ate from the tree.
“Who told you that you were naked?”
Adam and Eve, having both consumed the fruit from the forbidden tree of knowledge of good and evil, suddenly found themselves uncomfortably naked. They sewed fig leaves together and made aprons to wear. They hid from God who was looking for them to explain why they ate the forbidden fruit. Adam told God that he was hiding because he was naked and afraid. Wait a minute, “who told you that you were naked?”, asked God. “And did you eat from that tree?” Adam’s reply was basically “she made me do it”. To which Eve replied “the serpent talked me into it”.
So God tells the serpent that he is cursed for the rest of his days to crawl on his belly and eat “dust” (which I interpret to mean the creatures that come from the dust). God also basically made the serpent and man enemies with this curse.
As far as Eve goes, His punishment for her was to make conception and childbirth painful. By conception, I interpret this to mean the menstrual cycle. Additionally she was bound to be ruled by her husband forever no matter how much she tried to control him. I’m not so sure this last one is still working.
For Adam, God explained that because he had listened to his wife, and eaten from the tree that he so clearly stated not to, he would no longer be allowed to eat from the garden. He was being kicked out of the garden to till the soil of the earth and eat from the crops he grows. He explained that Adam came from the dust, and that to the dust he would return.
So God made coats of skins and clothed the man and the woman. He knew they now had the knowledge of good and evil and should be kicked out of the garden. So He did just that. God set them out of the garden to till the land from which they came. He set up a couple of those divine winged creatures they called “cherubims” and a flaming sword that turned all around to keep them out for good.
So we see that God has found some degree of disappointment in the actions of man. Instead of following through with the result that He had initially explained would come from eating the forbidden fruit however, He kicked them out of the garden to fend for themselves.
I never did like snakes.
I love my kids, they still each ate a cookie while I was in the bathroom. And it’s times like that when I think to myself “SOMEDAY they’ll be gone”, which quickly changes to “someday they’ll be GONE”. At least when they are out on their own, I’ll have these memories and a lot more cookies!