Source image: detail from Adam and Eve by Lucas Cranach
To eat the fruit is an evil act. To not do an evil act, one must know what evil is. To know what evil is, one must eat the fruit. But to eat the fruit, is an evil act. Oh, circular logic from a supposedly omniscient being. You make me dizzy.
As an allegory, this is interesting. In order to not do evil, they must know what it is first. There is one thing they could do to learn what evil is. As it happens, the one thing they could do happens to be evil. In other words, in order to prevent evil, evil must be done first to learn of it. This is a good allegory fire growing up. Adam and Eve are morally children. They’ve had no life experiences to inform them of right and wrong, and, unlike children, they have no one to watch who have already had said life experiences. So they have to disobey their parent, in this case God, in order to learn that disobeying him is evil. This makes the story more worthwhile.
As a literal story, however, this makes God look terrible. Puts a moral hot pan within reach of his children, tells them not to touch it, goes away, leaving it without a guard, which we know he can do since he put one in front of the Garden of Eden after kicking out the humans. This could have been done on purpose, teaching the same lesson as the allegory, but he takes it way too far. He doesn’t just set it up and punishes them, and only them, for committing the act as a way to teach them not to disobey him, he punishes them and EVERY HUMAN BEING THAT THERE EVER WILL BE with Hell, or the possibility of Hell, something they have to be saved from. An eternal torture because either he’s a terrible god/parent or he wanted to show all of us what happens when we disobey by continuously punishing us for all eternity. Either way, it’s horrible.
Thanks for reading, see you Monday.