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The Tree of Knowledge of Good And Evil

I assume that most people have heard about the biblical story of Adam and Eve. Throughout history, the story has been told to us in a certain way, and we have accepted that traditional version. For those of the Christian faith in particular, the interpretation of the story fits in well with how some other aspects of the bible are interpreted and also with the subsequent conclusions that arise out of those interpretations.

The tradition version of  the story finds it’s basis from Genesis, which is the first book of the Bible. It is an account of the creation, by God, of the the first human, Adam. Upon his creation, Adam was placed in a garden that God had created which contained many trees, including the Tree of Life and the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. Adam was told that he could eat from any of the trees in the garden except from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. Seeing that Adam was alone, God created a woman which was named Eve. Eve was also told not to eat from that particular tree. Genesis states that, “The Serpent”, deceived Eve into eating from the tree and she then convinced Adam to do the same. The scene where Eve eats from the tree is commonly artistically depicted, showing a snake wrapped around a tree and Eve eating an apple.  For his trickery, “The Serpent”, and all of his future descendants were cursed, and Adam, Eve and all of their future descendants were cursed for disobeying God.

Note: In the standard telling of Adam and Eve, there is no mention of the fruit from the tree of knowledge of good and evil being an apple. Many believe that the depiction of the apple is due to the association with the latin word “Malum” which means both “evil” and “apple”.

 

Despite being cursed, Adam went on to have an extremely long life compared to today’s standards. In Genesis 5:5 Adam is declared as living for 930 years. There is no mention of how long Eve lived for, but they are reported to have had at least seven children comprising of boys and girls. The bible states that their first born was Cain, followed by Abel. Their third son Seth was born when Adam was 130 years old, and after that they begot further “sons and daughters”. Some Jewish writings and traditions, have suggested that they may have had dozens of children of both genders. This is not inconceivable taking their reported lifespans into account. Of the known children, Cain and Seth went on to have families of their own. Abel is not mentioned as having any descendants as he was murdered by his brother Cain.

On a side note, the number of children that Adam and Eve had, is important as it provides a perfectly reasonable answer to a commonly asked question. That question is, if all of humanity came from Adam and Eve then surely there must have been issues related to incest and issues related to birth defects that we now know occurs when close blood relatives have children together. To keep it simple, it is clear that although Genesis condemned intimate relations between children and their parents, there was no condemnation of a man who decided to marry his aunts, sisters or nieces. It was not until the time of Moses that marriage between close relatives was forbidden. This change occurred as birth defects were increasingly becoming more of an issue. At the time of Adam and Eve (who had both been created with perfect unblemished genes) birth defects amongst their early descendants was not an issue.

The Creation of Adam, by Michelangelo – Sistine Chapel, Vatican City.
Creation of Eve, also by Michelangelo – Sistine Chapel, Vatican City.

 

Getting back to the story of Adam and Eve. The story that is traditionally taught to Christians is one that is based on a consistently unwavering, resolute interpretation of biblical texts. This is the story that we know, but is it the correct interpretation of the texts? Also, if it is not the correct interpretation, is it a simple matter of misunderstanding or is it an intentional deception by those who lead the Christian faith for the purpose of hiding the truth and the potential implications that go with it, whatever they may be?

Now, if we take a closer look at the scriptures relating to Adam, Eve and “The Serpent”, it appears that there is a more obvious interpretation. An interpretation that logically seems to make more sense than the current widely accepted interpretation. An interpretation that perhaps gives us a better understanding of the reasoning behind some of the major occurrences depicted in the bible. Occurrences which many Christians have at times had difficulty in understanding the logic behind.

It is widely accepted, based on various verses from the bible that “The Serpent” is Satan. It is also widely accepted that Eve was “deceived” into eating from the tree. However, in the King James version of the bible, 2 Corinthians 11:3, the word “Beguile” is thrown into the mix. When God asks Eve what she had done, she said that the serpent “Beguiled” her. This word may not seem significant until you look at it’s definition. Beguile means to charm or enchant someone in a deceptive way and is synonymous with other words such as tempt, and seduce.

According to Genesis 3:15, right after Eve is beguiled, God says to Satan that for his indiscretion, he will put “emnity’ (opposition, hostility) between he and Eve AND between Satan’s seed and Eve’s seed. If you look at this from a logical perspective, when God talks about Eve’s seed, he is referring to her PHYSICAL offspring. In the context of what God says to Eve, it must then also stand to reason that when God talks about Satan’s seed, it must be in reference to Satan’s PHYSICAL offspring.

The bible has  verses, such as those in Ezekiel chapter 31, which appears to describe the casting out of Satan from God’s garden (The Garden of Eden). In that particular reference Satan is described as a majestic TREE that no other trees in the garden could rival or match in it’s beauty. It was the “envy of all the trees of Eden in the garden of god”. God goes on to say that this TREE became too proud of itself, and was cast aside. So, in the context of this verse it makes sense that the ‘tree’ in the Garden of Eden as described in Genesis, was a symbolic representation of Satan and not a tree in a literal sense. This is supported with the statement that the other trees envied him, therefore showing that the other trees where also literally not trees, but in fact other spiritual beings. So, what we can see is that if the tree is Satan, then Satan IS the “Tree of knowledge of good and evil”. Following on from that it’s clear that when the bible states that the serpent beguiled Eve to eat the fruit of the tree, what it actually means is that Satan beguiled (tempted, seduced) Eve to partake of his own fruit.

Satan was a mighty, angelic being prior to being cast out.

 

Various verses from the bible, connects, eating and partaking with the mouth, with adultery and fornication. Proverbs 30:20 & Revelation 17:1-2. With this in mind, it can be inferred that Eve partaking of Satan’s fruit, is actually a reference to a sexual encounter. Eve simply eating the fruit from the tree just would not make sense in the context that Satan IS the tree.

Genesis 4:1-2 states that Adam had sexual relations with Eve which resulted in the conception and birth of Cain and that she also conceived and gave birth to Cain’s brother Abel. These verses do not specify whether the births were separate or whether the births occurred at the same time. It can be concluded however, by the way the verses are written, that Cain and Abel may well have been twins. The reason behind this deduction is that throughout various other verses (eg. Genesis 4:17 and Genesis 4:25 and others) whenever a child is conceived, it clearly states that the man “knew” or “had relations” with his wife and bore a child, and that this is repeated for each child. In the case of Cain and Abel, this does not occur. There is only one reference to Adam “knowing” Eve in those two verses. If Abel was born at a later date than Cain, then surely there would have been a further statement saying that Adam ‘knew” Eve again. Also, between verses 1 and 2, the word AND is used, meaning that there is a connection between the two verses and therefore suggesting that the two births came from the same pregnancy. So, basically the bible appears to state that there was one pregnancy and that this pregnancy resulted in the birth of two children, in other words, twins.

Further to this, and based on other biblical verses, there seems to be evidence that Adam was not Cain’s biological father. Verse 12 of 1 John chapter 3, for example, states words to the effect of, “Do not be like Cain, who is of the evil one”. In some translations, it’s even stated as “who was a child of the evil one“. This supports the view as stated above that the encounter between Satan and Eve in the garden was of a sexual nature and further, that it resulted in the conception of Cain. So what we have is the birth of twins, with Cain being Satan’s progeny and Abel being Adam’s.

You may ask how is it possible for twins to be born with different father’s. Well it is possible and it is called Heteropaternal superfecundation, which is the fertilisation of two separate ova by two different fathers.

If the alternative interpretation as outlined in this article is the correct one, then it actually provides us with a clearer and more logical explanation as to why Cain (Whom would have otherwise been a descendant of two genetically perfect beings) turn out to be wicked, culminating in the murder of his own brother Abel. It makes more sense that he behaved the way he did, not just because he chose to, as the traditional interpretation of the bible suggests, but perhaps, also because of the negative influence of his tainted bloodline.

Many years after Cain killed his brother Abel, Adam and Eve had another son, named Seth. Both Cain and Seth went on to have families of their own. Many generations later Noah became one of Seth’s descendant’s and was the one chosen to build the Ark to protect his own family from the great flood which wiped out the remainder of humanity. Many Christians have questioned whether the flood and subsequent deaths were necessary, but if you again examine the issue based on Cain being Satan’s progeny, you can better understand why God chose to save Noah’s bloodline, which originated from an untainted Adam,  and not that of Cain’s descendants, who’s bodies had been tainted by Satan.

From a modern day perspective, is it possible that despite the great flood, Cain, or one or more of his descendants survived?  At the very least part of his tainted DNA. Well, that issue is open to debate. Without going further into scriptural analysis, the bible does state that God placed a mark on Cain so that no man would kill him. Does that mean that Cain was made immortal or simply that no man could kill him? Some have suggested that he is still alive and hidden amongst us and some have suggested that if not then surely his DNA would have somehow found it’s way into Noah’s bloodline through inter-marriage between Cain’s descendants and Seth’s descendants.

Could this explain why there is still wickedness today and why there is a further need for Jesus to return? The bible teaches that during the end times, Satan’s son, the Anti-Christ, who will be a false prophet, will dominate the world until Jesus returns. Is Cain (who may still be alive and is the literal son of Satan), the Anti-Christ, or is it one who possesses his DNA or someone that is yet to exist?   These are interesting questions, the answers to which would influence both Christian thinking generally and their belief systems.

I’m sure that the alternative interpretation of the story of Adam and Eve would likely have other implications on the traditional teachings of other aspects of the bible. I am not a biblical scholar however and therefore do not have the knowledge to point out what those other aspects may be. I’ll leave that to those who are more knowledgeable and to those with the inclination to do so.

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One comment

  1. The vagal trunk of the vagus nerves is the trunk of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Vagal stimulation is as effective as LSD.

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