Eve was totally confused as to what God did say:
1) She left out “freely” (2:16; 3:2);
2) She left out “surely” and added “touch it” (2:17; 3:3).
Satan was very knowledgeable of the Word of God and he was able to use his knowledge in such a way as to deceive Eve. One of the great tactics of Satan is to bring out the negative prohibitions in an attempt to get a person to forget about the blessings. This tactic certainly worked in Eden.
Satan lied about what God did say and totally contradicted the true Word of God. Gen. 2:17; 3:4 Satan will always twist things so that the truth of God’s Word is ultimately contradicted. Whatever God’s Word truly says, Satan is out to communicate something that distorts it.
Satan got Eve to imagine that God was withholding something good from her. Gen. 3:5 He got Eve to take her eyes off God and focus them on self.
Satan focused Eve’s attention on what was forbidden and he used a basic threefold attack (Gen. 3:6; 1 John 2:16).
- “Good for food” – Lust of flesh; attack through the body.
- “Delight to eyes” – Lust of eyes; attack through vision.
- “Desirable to make one wise” – Pride of life–attack through ego. Dr. Torrey observed this first temptation presents five key steps that usually lead to sin:
- Listen to slander against God’s Word.
- Doubt God’s Word and God’s love.
- Look at what God has forbidden.
- Lust for what God has prohibited.
- Disobey God’s command. Satan’s first method of temptation teaches us much concerning God’s Word: We must know God’s Word well because Satan not only knows it well but he will totally distort it. Gen. 3:4–“shall not die!”
We must believe God’s Word and stand firmly for what it says. Our entire relationship with God hinges on this as does our ability to combat our enemy. Had Eve believed God’s Word instead of Satan’s lies, this entire scene would have been different.
We must defend God’s Word by having such a working knowledge of it that we can give an adequate defense against our enemies. Satan will specifically come at us trying to twist God’s Word and we must be able to give an adequate defense or we can be tripped.
We must never add to or subtract from God’s Word, for this is a major key to success with God and success against Satan (Gen. 3:3; 2:17; Rev. 22:18).
What are the three main methods of interpretation concerning the fall of mankind found in Genesis?
Interpretive Method #1—Allegory – a figurative story or legend.
Interpretive Method #2—Myth – a folklore or fairytale to teach some truth or lesson.
Interpretive Method #3—Literal – a literal, historical, actual, factual event that occurred exactly as the Bible says. New Testament writers interpreted Genesis literally (Rom. 5:12-21; 1 Cor. 15:21-22; I Tim. 2:14; Jude 14).
The only acceptable method of interpretation that is consistent with facts and consistent with the rest of the Word of God is to interpret the Genesis account literally. It is a literal, historical, factual account of what actually happened. One of the main reasons why some want to discredit Genesis is because men do not like to face themselves as sinners.
The moment one concedes that Genesis is to be interpreted literally is the moment one must concede that he has a real problem with God. Many do not want to face this reality and therefore Genesis is explained as being an allegory or myth, but not factual reality.
It is imperative to realize that the entire Bible, not just Genesis, must be interpreted literally for this is the only method of interpretation that acknowledges that God says what He means and means what He says. It is the only method of interpretation that allows God to speak for Himself.
What was the test given to Adam and Eve?
The real test given to Adam and Eve was basically this: Will you obey the Word of God. God told them they were not to eat of one tree, so the ultimate test is whether or not they will obey Him in conforming to His Word. This is the same type of test that faces both the unbeliever and the believer. The real issue at stake in anyone’s life is whether we will obey God and His Word. This is the issue pertaining to both salvation and sanctification.
What were the results of the fact that Adam and Eve did not choose to obey God? (This outline taken from the doctrine notes of Mr. John Miles). The results of Adam and Eve’s disobedience were devastating and we may see them under two headings:
When Adam and Eve sinned, there were two immediate results of that sin:
Result #1 – Immediate shame (Gen. 3:7-10). The shame that they experienced after sinning affected each other and it affected their relationship with God. They made clothing to hide their shame from each other and they literally tried to hide themselves from God. When one is in disobedience to God’s Word, there is an Adamic tendency to cover one’s condition rather than admit it. There is also a tendency to hide from God, His Word, His church and His faithful people. All of this comes right out of Eden.
Result #2 – Immediate fear (Gen. 3:10). When Adam and Eve disobeyed God, they were afraid to face Him, so they hid from Him. When a believer disobeys God, there ought to be a healthy fear of facing God. But there should also be a swift running to God to confess the sin rather than fearfully running and hiding from sin. The truth is, if we are hiding and not confessing our sin, we should be afraid of facing God. In fact, the thought of facing God should prompt each of us to obedience.
When Adam and Eve sinned, there were at least seven, long-term, futuristic results:
Future Result #1 – The implementation of death (Gen. 2:17). As we have already covered, there were three types of death implemented at the fall–physical, spiritual and eternal. Prior to this, death was nonexistent.
Future Result #2 – The curse on the serpent (Gen. 3:14). The serpent was penalized by God and condemned to crawl upon his belly. This is a staggering picture of what happens when one sins. Prior to Satan’s influence, the serpent apparently stood upright in posture, but after Satan’s influence he was degraded to the lowest, most humiliating form of existence–crawl in the dust.
The end result of satanic influence will always be the same. Satan will take something that is standing tall and will bring it to the lowest form of degradation. Satan will always leave one crawling in the filth and dirt of this world.
Future Result #3 – The securing of the judgment of Satan (Gen. 3:15). The judgment of Satan was completely secured and guaranteed in Eden. Satan’s judgment includes at least three features:
1) No harmony ever between God’s family and Satan’s family. “enmity between you and the woman and between your seed and her seed.”
2) Total future destruction. “He shall bruise you on the head.”
3) Partial wounding of Christ. “you shall bruise Him on the heel.” The Hebrew word “bruise” is one that refers to lying in wait in order to attack someone so that one may crush the target. What is actually described in Genesis 3:15 is a futuristic perspective of Satan’s work against Christ.
Satan waited for Christ to come to this world and when He finally did come, Satan bruised Him on the heel by having His hands and feet nailed to a cross. Ultimately, it was the cross that dealt a lethal blow to Satan and cements the fact that he will be forever doomed and damned. Through Christ’s work on the cross, millions have been saved from Satan’s power and destiny. What he thought was a great victory over Jesus Christ ended up being a crushing blow to his head.
Pastor David E. Thompson is pastor/teacher at Texas Corners Bible Church in Kalamazoo, Michigan with a nationally syndicated radio show reaching all across the United States. Pastor Thompson may be classified as a true systematic Bible expositor and communicator of God’s Word. He carefully expounds books of the Bible in a way that is contextually, exegetically, grammatically, historically, and theologically accurate to the text and relevant to the time. He is also an very skilled in New Testament Greek.