By Rev. George Argyropoulos
December 7, 2017
When the devil told Eve that if she ate the forbidden fruit she would become as God, he deceived and lied to her. What he really meant was that she would become like himself, for he desired to be AS God.
This desire possessed the very substance that birthed the sinful nature, that is, the knowledge of rebellion through disobedience. Adam and Eve lived in the garden, but not in a world without evil. The evil one was present in the world around them, yet they were untouched by that evil and, like children in the arms of a strong father, unaware of it. They only knew the provision, life, sustenance, joy, and protection of God through fellowship and relationship with Him. They were King and Queen in their world by the authority of God Himself--as long as they clasped the hand of trust in simple obedience.
The devil promised them knowledge, but it was a lie, for they already had knowledge: knowledge of all that was good and beautiful in the world around them, knowledge that would grow with curiosity and subsequent discovery.
He didn't tell them, however, that they would acquire a new kind of knowledge by entering the gate of rebellion and disobedience into a kingdom of hardship and toil from which there was NO RETURN to the innocence of the garden. The same gateway Satan himself entered while in heaven, while still glorious and pure in his nature, the first to ignite the spark of cynical resistance to the wisdom of a loving God and be thrust from eternal light into eternal darkness.
What they now knew changed them and their very nature forever. They could no longer stay in the world of innocence, for they were themselves a detriment to it. Exiled into the awareness of their sin, the presence of the garden hidden from their understanding, they could never find it again.
How can we re-enter the world of innocence, being perpetually born into the knowledge of Adam? How can we unknow the sin which has fastened itself like a venomous serpent onto our hearts?
There is only one way. The trick of the trickster is turned upon him, for God has deceived the deceiver. A new knowledge is given by God if only we can be convinced to taste its fruit and gain its understanding. But, we were tricked before, and the cynicism of our broken nature will attempt to prevent us. What can convince us now that this knowledge will once and for all restore us to the innocence of the garden?
It was love that put us in the garden, love that sought us when we left, and love that will convince us to re-enter. For, just as God formed our bodies from the dust of the ground, so He will form our spirits from the dust of our sin.
Genesis 2:7 "Then the Lord God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being."
1 Cor. 15:45 "So it is written: 'The first man Adam became a living being,' the last Adam (Christ), a life-giving spirit."
1 Cor. 15:22 "For as in Adam all die, so in Christ, all will be made alive."
So, the first Adam from given immortality, through his sin, procreated mortality. But the second Adam (Christ), from his given mortality, through his sinlessness and obedience procreates immortality. What is the fruit that reveals this knowledge?
Rom. 10:10 "For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved."
We gain the knowledge of our innocence by tasting the goodness of God, through the work of His son on the cross as an atonement for our sins. It's that simple.
Psalm 34:8 "Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him."
Isaiah 1:18 "Come now, let us reason together," says the LORD. "Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool."
Christ is the New Gateway back to innocence and immortality. His love convinces us, our faith unlocks the door. We are welcomed again into the garden through grace, as we stand before the tree of our condition--the cross, not to partake of the fruit of human knowledge that is contrary to innocence, but rather the fruit of simple faith and humility that births innocence.
Go on then, taste the fruit of faith, and in the second Adam, Christ, become once again, a new creation.