Genesis 3:2-7, 11-12, 22-23

From Reconciling understandings of Scripture and Science
Jump to navigationJump to search

BibleOld TestamentGenesis

And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:
But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.
And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:
For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.
And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.
And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.

. . .

11 And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat?
12 And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.

. . .

21 Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.
22 And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:
23 Therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken.

See The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. The text avoids naming "The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil", but makes it clear.

For verse 4, "ye shall not surely die", see "thou shalt surely die".

A Creation Text

← back a tour of the Bible's Creation Texts next →

Nahash (נָחָשׁ)

Nahash means "serpent" or "snake," also "dragon". The Serpent is significant in many of the Bible's Creation Records, beginning from Genesis 3:2-7, 11-12, 22-23 — the actual animal described in Genesis ch. 3 as "the serpent" is sometimes understood to be an essential part of the "rationale" of Jesus Christ and the Gospel: see this extract from an editorial in Lampstand Magazine.

The archetypal serpent appropriated for prophetical purposes in the Bible is Leviathan — q.v. for Brother Wilfred Lambert's comments, which are helpful for understanding how to read imagery appropriated from the ancient polytheistic myths in the Old Testament context. For more background see this Wikipedia article.

Prophetical passages that mention nahash include Job 26:12-13 and Isaiah 27:1 — the fleeing serpent pierced by the victorious hand of Yahweh — see The Crooked Serpent and Leviathan.

New Testament references to the Serpent include Revelation 12:7-9 which equates it with "the great dragon" (see Leviathan) and Satan, defeated in an apocalyptic battle with the archangel Michael (Jude 9).

This passage was referenced here (5.3.3) in our responses to the AACE discussion questions.