It Wasn’t an Apple and It Didn’t Happen Like This

There are many Fractured Fairytales of the Fall of Man.  In the movie, Walk the Line, Jerry Lee Lewis states, “We’re all going to hell for the songs we sing” as he explains about that “great big apple” and “Don’t touch it.” It reinforces the idea that Eve grabbed an apple from the apple tree God told her was off-limits leading to…

Fractured Fairytale #1:  Eve, being the brainless ditz and immoral woman she was, grabbed a great big apple and she made Adam sin.  It’s always been the fault of the woman alone, women are always on the prowl to seduce men, and women are always to blame.  Just ask any woman in a male-dominated seminary how she feels.  (Go ahead and laugh.  I’m over it now.)  Carried to the extreme it becomes…

Fractured Fairytale #2: Eve colluded with the serpent to seduce and destroy Adam, that stoic bastion of godly righteousness. 

You think I’m joking?  Wish I was.  From early theologian Tertullian (c. 155 – c. 240 AD): “And do you not know that you are (each) an Eve? The sentence of God on this sex of yours lives in this age: the guilt must of necessity live too. You are the devil’s gateway: you are the unsealer of that (forbidden) tree: you are the first deserter of the divine law: you are she who persuaded him whom the devil was not valiant enough to attack. You destroyed so easily God’s image, man. On account of your desert — that is, death — even the Son of God had to die.  (The Apparel of Women, Book I, Chapt. 1

Gotta hand it to those church fathers.  They sure know how to make a woman feel special.

Fractured Fairytale #3

  • The man: “Woman, don’t eat from the trees.  I’m the man.  I know better.  You’d better let me pick the fruit.”
  • The woman: “But I’m hungry.”
  • The man: “You’ll get fat and I don’t want a fat wife.”
  • Snake: “No calories, woman.  Chill.”
  • The man: “Don’t do it!”
  • The woman: “I’ll show you.” (Takes apple, eats big bite, but doesn’t die.)  “See?”
  • The man: “Cool!” (Eats apple).
  • Afterwards the man (adam) gets a name change to Adam which comes from adama, dirt.  Man’s name has been dirt or mud with women ever since.

The truth is the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, the “forbidden fruit” was never an apple, didn’t result in instant death, and it didn’t make Adam and Eve future Jeopardy winners with instant recall of all knowledge.  No omniscience from this fruit, but eating it did forever divorce them from childlike dependence upon God and reliance upon His loving guidance. That fruit was real but presents an image of anything we want apart from God.

Genesis 3:1 Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?” 2 The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, 3 but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.'” 4 “You will not surely die,” the serpent said to the woman. 5 “For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” 6 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. 7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked.

For further thought:

  • How do these misunderstandings of how the Fall happened contribute to dismissing both Creation and the Fall? 
  • The man was with his wife.  What was his role?  What should have been his role?
  • Do you ever wonder if your actions would have been different?
  • We don’t know what the fruit was, but that it was pretty to look at and good for food.  God wasn’t withholding something good from them for bad reasons.  When’s the last time you felt like God was depriving you of something you wanted? 
  • Are there any hidden ways a distrust of the opposite sex displays itself in your life or thoughts? 

Categories Articles and Devotionals, Devotionals | Tags: | Posted on January 20, 2018

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