Tuesday, July 28, 2009

A Little Knowledge is a Bad Thing (Original Sin) aka Paradise Lost / Trouble in Paradise

Genesis tells the story of creation, and how God created the first man, who was known as Adam. In Genesis 2:15-17 we learn what God did with that man:

15 And the Lord God took the man, and put him into the Garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.

16 And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, "Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:

17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die."

Okay, a couple of questions here. First, who was writing this? There wasn't anybody around except God and Adam, right? That means that one of them was writing about himself in the third person, which is just weird.

Second, if God had this special tree that He didn't want Adam to eat from, why the hell would He put Adam right next to it? Couldn't He have put Adam in one garden and the forbidden tree in another? I mean, He had the whole planet at His disposal, didn't He? And why did God even need a tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Didn't He just build the whole planet like a week prior? God must have known good and evil before that, even without the tree. So who was the fruit of the forbidden tree for?

Genesis 2:18 goes on to say that man shouldn't be alone. Does this mean that Adam wasn't taking care of his bachelor pad? Was he leaving trash scattered all over the place and dishes undone? Whatever the reason, God decided to create a woman, who was later known as Eve. Genesis 2:25 tells us:

And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.

So were Adam and Eve just running around naked, eating freely from every tree but one with not a care in the world? What kind of other good things did God have growing in the Garden of Eden?

Anyway, all was well and good until one day Eve met a snake, as stated in Genesis 3:1 :

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?

Could all animals talk back then? Was the serpent the most subtil <sic> because he could talk? Who taught him, if not God? Did the same person teach Eve to talk? She not only understood the serpent, but she answered it as well. Genesis 3:2-3 tells us:

2 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:

3 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.

Did Eve get different restrictions than Adam? Why was Adam only forbidden to eat the fruit, but Eve was forbidden to touch it as well? Was this the first case of sexism?

In Genesis 3:4-5 we learn of the serpent's response:

4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:

5 For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.

Was the serpent calling God a liar? Was the serpent saying that God was keeping the really good stuff from the humans? How did the serpent know this? Had he eaten from the tree? Did he know good from evil? And why did he say "gods" in the plural? Were there some other gods out there writing this all down. It would eliminate the problem of someone referring to himself in the third person, but who were these other gods?

Verses 6 and 7 tell us what happened next:

6 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.

7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.

Does this mean that the serpent had been truthful? More truthful than God? Were Adam and Eve complete morons until they ate the fruit? Were they really too stupid to know they were naked? Did they even notice that the other was naked? Did they care? Would the human race have ended with those two? Were they just prancing around like the animals? Animals with no sex drive? Is this how God wanted humans to always live? Did God never want us to have any wisdom? And who taught the man and the woman to sew? Was that the serpent too?

Genesis 3:14-19 tell of God's reaction, and to say that He was pissed is putting it mildly:

14 And the Lord God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life:

15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.

16 Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.

17 And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;

18 Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;

19 In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.

God didn't cut anyone any breaks, did He? But why was He so pissed? Did He take any blame on Himself for putting the tree there unnecessarily? Why did he want humans to be stupid? Did He never intend for us to have any wisdom? Why did He think it bad that we know good from evil? How could we worship Him if we were no different in intelligence than the animals? Why did He curse the snake for helping us? Why did He take Adam and Eve's disobedience out on all of us? Did the snake have legs before it was cursed to eat dust? God doesn't mention taking its power of speech, so why can't today's snakes talk?

Why does the Church teach that the serpent was Satan? The Bible doesn't say so, does it? Did the snake not help us in the long run? Would we all not just be running around stupid and naked if not for the snake? Why did God lie to Adam about dying on the same day he would eat from the tree? The Bible says Adam live for 930 years! And what happened to this husband ruling over the woman curse? Did that one just fade away?

Then in Genesis 3:22 we learn that there was a second tree that was pretty cool too! :

And the Lord God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:

Had Adam and Eve eaten from that tree too, would we all live forever? Would we be indestructible? Where would we all live? What would we do with the cemeteries? Why didn't the serpent mention the other tree? Why didn't the talking snake live forever? Who was God talking to when He said, "The man is become as one of us"? Was God talking to those other gods that the serpent mentioned? Were Thor and Hercules from the old Saturday morning cartoons real?Does God still live with His family? Why have we never met the others? Is God embarrassed by us?

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