When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. (Genesis 3:6 NIVUK)
The temptation of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden was an invitation not simply to break a rule but to engage in an act of revolution. Initially, the man and woman were in a right relationship with God. When they woke up their thoughts and imagination would go toward him, their delight was in him, for this God, who had made them, was their unifying centre.
But all this changed with the taking of this fruit. Our first parents decided they didn’t want God telling them what to do, they wanted to have independent thought and decide for themselves what is right and wrong. They wanted to be the centre of the universe, with God pushed to the side or out of the picture altogether. In essence, this is the nature of sin, and it sparks a revolution. This is more than mere defiance of a particular rule, this is outright rebellion against the rule of God in humanity’s universe. Deep down, Adam and Eve’s decision to take and eat of this fruit said: “From henceforth we will be God and rule our own lives.”
This fruit illuminated the very nature of all that is rebellion. Eve ‘saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food,’ that is, physically appealing, ‘and pleasant to the eye,’ it was aesthetically pleasing, ‘and desirable for gaining wisdom,’ it was mentally transforming, and so ‘she took some and ate.’
In other words, she followed her own impressions and desire to be independent rather than follow the instructions her loving God had given.
Humanity has trod this path ever since, wanting to be the centre of our universe, deciding for ourselves what’s right and wrong, with God pushed out of the way. That is until the arrival of the Last Adam, Jesus Christ, who undid mankind’s rebellion by being perfectly obedient to his Father, even to death on a cross.
In the garden, Eve took the fruit and ate, giving some to Adam who also ate it. In doing so God had said they would die. Thousands of years later the words take and eat became verbs of salvation, referring to the Lord’s Supper, as the Second Adam gave us symbols of his perfect obedience that leads to life.
All humanity will take and eat something. Let us choose wisely and reject the fruit of rebellion and independence, for the bread and wine of eternal life found in Jesus.
Father, thank you for Jesus, may we taste and see that he is good, and is the way to eternal life.
Have a good week experiencing Jesus,