Adam and Eve's Knowledge

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by luke1616, May 16, 2010.

  1. luke1616

    luke1616
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    Many doctrines say that Adam and Eve knew the difference between right and wrong before they ate the forbidden fruit. Scripture tells me this is not so, that they would be like Gods if they had that knowledge. What is your belief?
     
  2. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    HP: They obviously knew what they could do and could not do before eating of the forbidden fruit, but they had no knowlege of the real consequences of their choice to do evil. Is that what you are referring to or another doctrine?
     
    #2 Heavenly Pilgrim, May 16, 2010
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  3. luke1616

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    Yeah, kind of. I'm saying that Eve did not know the difference between right and wrong. She only knew right. She had never experienced wrong. All she knew was do not eat from the tree of good and evil. She did not know better, and did it anyway. For instance the Nazarene doctrine states " We believe that the human race’s creation in Godlikeness included ability to choose between right and wrong," Is was an issue of obeying God or not. The Law did not come until after they broke it.
     
  4. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    HP: I would be in agreement with the Nazarenes on this point. Because they had never experienced the CONSEQUENCES of doing wrong, is no sign they did not understand that they were forbiddern to do so and that if they did disobeyed they would be violating a command given long before the rest of the law, i.e., Ge 2:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.
     
  5. luke1616

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    They did not know it was wrong to eat. If Eve knew it was wrong to eat the fruit, she would not of believed Satan. The bible says she believed the lie. What you are saying is that Eve had a little of the law, or their eyes were a little open, impossible.
     
    #5 luke1616, May 16, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: May 16, 2010
  6. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    I am saying they knew the commandment not to eat of that tree, and made a willful choice to disobey. Many people believe lies. Believing a lie does NOT suggest they are not in violation of moral law by acting in accordance to even a lie. If they had not first been told NOT to eat, and then just believed a lie, that would be different.
     
  7. BobRyan

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    The tree of knowledge OF Good and evil - was not the tree of knowing aBOUT good and evil or knowing the "difference between good and evil".

    In Genesis 2 it was referring to - not "knowing evil" through intimate first hand experience.

    A subtle difference that people miss many times.

    Imagine for a moment that all the fate of the world - doomed to hell or living in immortality for eternity was dependant on perfect created beings always choosing the right path AND YET so ill-informed that they did not even know 'the difference' between good and evil.

    It would be like saying - "you must get an A on this test to be admitted to college" and yet "you do not know the difference between right and wrong answers". That would be an unjust system.

    Eve stated very clearly in Genesis 3:1-4 that she DID know what was wrong - and not only did she know it was wrong - she also knew the penalty attached.

    They did know "right FROM wrong" they did know "good FROM evil" but by personal first-hand experience they only knew good - for they had only done what was right before the Lord.

    Once she did the very thing SHE said she was not supposed to do on pain of death - Eve also "knew from firsthand experience" - evil.

    in Christ,

    Bob
     
  8. BobRyan

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    This is the innexplicable argument that nobody does wrong if they know it is wrong. Or in this even more extreme example above - nobody can be deceived into making a wrong choice if they know the choice is against God's Word and is on pain of death.

    And yet in Genesis 3 we see it.

    And in every day life we see it - time after time.

    So where does the idea stated in Luke's post above get off the ground?

    in Christ,

    Bob
     
  9. JohnDeereFan

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    And yet, you fail to cite any such scripture that says Adam and Eve didn't know the difference between right and wrong.
     
  10. JohnDeereFan

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    Yeah, that argument would be quite a surprise to Paul, who said that he found himself doing those things which he knew was wrong.
     
  11. RAdam

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    Exactly.

    Adam and Eve weren't predisposed to sin. Satan had to deceive her. She was ignorant of some things: not that it was wrong to eat the fruit, but rather she was ignorant of Satan's devises, she was ignorant of the full reality of the consequences of her chosen path, she was ignorant of the shame of sin, etc.
     
  12. steaver

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    Have you ever wondered why a loving God placed a forbidden tree in an otherwise perfectly safe environment, within the reach of His perfect children, knowing full well that those children would indeed eat of it and die?
     
  13. BobRyan

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    Agreed. And she did not "know" the humilation, shame and condemnation of the one who falls into sin and is doomed to the 2nd death of Rev 20.

    God chose to spare Adam and Eve that humilation and shame. But they chose to unwittingly "go there" anyway, each of them supposing that they were gaining something in some odd way.

    Eve thought she was gaining the Serpent's promise of evolution.

    Adam thought he was gaining a means to remain connected with Eve after she fell.

    in Christ,

    Bob
     
  14. dwmoeller1

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    This is my take on the whole thing...

    There are 3 basic conditions for man to be in: perfect, innocent, and sinful.

    AandE were not perfect. This is shown by the fact that Eve was deceived and both sinned.

    AandE were not sinful. They didn't know the difference between good and evil and they had no bent toward sinning. Barring temptation from the outside, there is every reason to believe that they would have continued in their sinless state.

    So, AandE were not perfect (they sinned), nor sinful (they didn't sin w/o outside influence). Thus they were innocent. The didn't know the difference between good evil, they didn't have an innate bent towards evil (as we do), but when presented with temptation they quickly fell to it. Both of them.
     
  15. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    HP: Finally! Some disagreement so the debate can start.:thumbs::smilewinkgrin:

    Why would they have been anything beside perfect before the fall? You say that they did not know the difference between good and evil. I would disagree. They knew the positive command and how to obey, and knew what to do to disobey, so they certainly did know obedience (good) from disobedience (evil.) They certainly had not experienced disobedience nor its consequences but they did have some conception of good and evil although possibly not known to them as ‘evil.’ They clearly understood the concept of obedience so that had to have some concept of what it would take to disobey as well.

    Why did they fall? Although it might appear quickly, we do not know that to be true do we? Could not there have been weeks, months or even years of hints of temptation before they actually yielded to it when Satan actually showed himself? Who knows? Temptation had to start in some limited way at the point of the command IMO. Do this and live, do this and die. Are not all humans subject to the temptation of curiousity, and is it not often veiled as that which will prove to be temptation?
     
  16. dwmoeller1

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    Perfect implies something that is unable to fail in its function/purpose. God is perfect - He cannot sin, He cannot fail, He cannot lie, etc. Adam and Eve were faultless and without sin, but not perfect. Human will not be perfect until the resurrection at which point they are confirmed in righteousness and can no longer sin.

    I would dispute that they had any real concept of disobedience. Certainly they knew the positive command, and certainly they had the ability to disobey, but there seems to no real conception of what disobedience was or what it entails. I think maybe we tend to project our own practiced and ingrained understanding of good and evil onto A and E's actions.

    Plus there is the statement in Gen 3:5 which relegates knowledge of good and evil to God, implying strongly that A and E did not have such a knowledge. Also, Eve's knowledge of good/evil seems limited solely to its consequences - do this and you die. Such basic knowledge of good/evil animals also seem to have - pee on the carpet and get a whack. (Note, I am not making a direct comparison between A/E and animals - merely noting that her knowledge of good/evil doesn't see much more than what a dumb beast would have).

    By quickly, I didn't mean to imply quickly in reference to creation - they could have lived for decades in Eden for all we know. Quickly was in reference to the time they were tempted - ie. they were tempted and fell to it quickly. There is no evidence of any sort of resistance to temptation...something which a knowledge of good and evil would have provided it seems.
     
  17. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    HP: I would disagree. We speak of a perfect diamond, a perfect marriage, a perfect game, ……and God spoke of a perfect man. Perfection has a varying degree of connotations, but I never see it as something, especially in a moral sense, of something 'unable' to fail, but rather totally unwilling to fail. If no contrary choice is within the realm of possibilities, there can be no morality predicated. Love could not be said to be perfect, for love denotes, and cannot exist without, the possibility of contrary choice. "Perfect love casteth out all fear."


    HP: I would again disagree. Men are moral beings, animals are not. Adam and Eve were created as ‘moral’ beings, proof of which is the eternal punishment they would receive for disobedience. What separates us from the animal kingdom is that we have the ability to understand the ‘intrinsic value’ of a command apart from punishments or rewards, whereas animals do not.

    As I see it, either Adam and Eve were created as moral beings or they were simply animals. I believe they were moral beings and as such just recipients of moral praise and blame, something unjust to apply to anyone not within the moral realm.

    Why did they fall?
     
  18. dwmoeller1

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    Yes, but ask anyone about the perfect marriage, diamond, etc. and one will always find that label of "perfect" was always in relationship to something less perfect. IOW, in all those cases, close questioning will reveal that those things were *really* perfect - some fault could have been found. But what else would you expect in an imperfect world - where perfection does not exist, any label of "perfect" can only be hyperbole in the end.

    Christ, of course, was the exception to the rule, but then He was exceptional by nature. When one calls Christ perfect, there is no hyperbole at all. He really was perfect in the greatest sense one could mean the word. After the resurrection, so will we.

    Well here we run into a problem. How are we using the "able/unable". It has two related but very distinct sense in which it can be used. So let me just ask this...Would you say it is accurate to say that God is unable to sin?

    Yeah, you are definitely using the word "able" in a different (but perfectly valid) sense than I meant it. But let me just stick with the question about God being able to sin for now and see where that goes.

    Agreed on the differences between man and animal. With one caveat. There is no indication in Gen 3 that A and E had any real sense of the "intrinsic value" of the command. Since I can't see how having this sense of "intrinsic value" is essential to man, and since it doesn't seem to be present with A and E (argument from silence, yes, but I am arguing by inference rather than deduction at this point...and those who claim that A and E and this sense of "intrinsic value" will also have to admit silence, so I believe I am avoiding fallacy here), I see no real reason to assign it to A and E.

    I guess that might be the central aspect of what I mean by "innocent" - no sense of the intrinsic value of obedience or disobedience...merely obedience because no other option had really occurred to them to that point. Yeah, I am speculating at this point, but since all other views are going to have to resort to speculation due to the paucity of information in and about Gen 3, I don't think I am over reaching.

    Also, when I formulate my thoughts, I will give a systematic reason for these 3 distinctions I have made.

    I agree that they were moral. I think that you have over-expanded the elements that are essential for a moral being to exist. But I am sure we will be exploring that further.

    Because they had no defenses against temptation being innocent. Actually I have a better answer but that will require a full post. Working on it in my mind right now.
     
  19. steaver

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    I agree. Adam was not created "perfect" or he could not have sinned.

    Jesus was tempted just as Adam was. Jesus was perfect and did not sin.
     
  20. BobRyan

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    1. Adam and Eve were "perfect" - they are the workmanship of God - God did not create them "flawed" in any way. God created them with Free Will - they had choice beyond that of a robot.

    By "definition of what it means to have free will" this means that you cannot rework a choice they make 20 years later - back to their creation origin and claim that at the start "they were not perfect".

    2. Adam and Eve were sinless - they had not sinned -- until the day that they "did" sin. They knew right from wrong - but knowing right from wrong is not "a sin" nor does it make one "sinful".

    3. Adam and Eve were not sinful. Not full of sin. not depraved.

    4. Adam and Eve were "informed" about what the need to obey - but were not "Experienced at sinning". Thus they did not know the state of BEING a sinner - first hand. They knew only of the idea and the fact that "death" was the outcome of that state.

    in Christ,

    Bob
     

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