It is said, "eating, thou shalt eat," just as here it is said, "dying, thou shalt die"; and therefore the two expressions may be interpreted alike — the one as saying, "Eating, thou shalt eat," or, "This tree shall be for thy perpetual life," the other as saying, "Dying, thou shalt die," or, "The taste of this tree shall be for thy perpetual death." Serves to reconcile science and revelation. Conclusion: This view of the subject —1. I COME NOW TO DISCOURSE OF THE PARTS OF THE COVENANT. It is now easy to show that GOD DID GIVE A PROPER LAW TO ADAM respecting the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. There was a covenant of works, a proper covenant, between God and Adam the father of mankind. (5)Moral forebodings.II. Mark God's mode of teaching. Tell not of your good meanings and desires, your repentance, and your obedience, such as it is; and think not to get life, salvation, and acceptance thereby. Let us close with two reflections. Analogies are not wanting to show to us how the fruits of the earth may be converted into a moral as well as a material poison. On one hand, deliberately bringing a disabled child into the world seems wrong. And this He doth, partly, to manifest the sincerity of His affection towards us, in desiring our salvation; and partly, to justify Himself in the condemnation of those that refuse so great salvation so many ways tendered unto them, and so obstinately refused. "To be carnally minded is death." The man could not at this time have any practical knowledge of the physical dissolution called death. 2. Such a change took place, not merely in his physical condition, but in his mind and heart — so much remorse and foreboding, so many dark thoughts about his dissolution — that he died: his innocency died, his hopes died, his peace died. Serves to explain many ambiguous passages. And cans, thou look at the many still unhealed and be content to do nothing? We are now prepared to understand why this tree is called the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. "To be carnally minded is death." By seeking a life apart from God and according to self-seeking desires, we orchestrate our own downfall. When we find, then, confirming seals of this transaction, we must own it to be a covenant. 2. It can be a means to the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, or it could be a means to impart Jesus as the Tree … This He does, by publishing His will to them in a certain manner. 1. See here the great and wonderful condescension of God, who was pleased to stoop so low as to enter into a covenant with His own creature. Most people will acknowledge … For understanding of this, we must consider —, 1. The law respecting the tree of the knowledge of good and evil was like all other Divine laws in its extent. The products of creative power were all very good (Genesis 1:31). VI. This covenant from Mount Sinai was the covenant of works as being opposed to the covenant of grace, namely, the law of the ten commandments, with promise and sanction, as before expressed. ", 3. The tree of life was also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. That Adam was thus furnished when the covenant was made with him —(1) Appears from plain Scripture: "God hath made man upright" (Ecclesiastes 7:29). ), II. There is no wonder, that however little good is wrought in the world, yet working to win heaven is so frequent. 2. It is the part of a superior to give law to an inferior. So the tempter pretended (Genesis 3:5), but he was a liar from the beginning (John 8:44). It is excluded. X. He stood for them all in that covenant, and was their federal head, that covenant being made with him as a public person representing them all. It had nothing intricate or dark about it. It is expressed in a prohibition of one particular, "Of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it. II. This week that passage from Genesis has reminded me that I should think about how we use knowledge; that I should think about it in light of my Christian faith; that I should pray about it. In other words, God set the standard of morality. By one man's disobedience many were made sinners" (Romans 5:15-19). Sunday Sermon & Sermon Notes May 28th, 2917. In the day that thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die. The knowledge of good and evil refers to the knowledge “of evil enjoyment.” That is, the tree sets before Adam the prospect of using the supremely good for evil purposes. The tree of the knowledge of good & evil mentioned in scripture only in this verse, largely because its effects have become widespread. MAN HAS HERE EVIDENTLY BECOME ACQUAINTED WITH HIS MAKER. Again, Christ is not the last Adam, but as the federal head of the elect, bringing salvation to them by His covenant keeping; therefore the first Adam was the federal head of those whom he brought death upon by his covenant breaking, and these are all: "For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive" (ver. 4. What is the right interpretation of those words? THE EMPHASIS EXPRESSED IN THE TEXT. It was enforced by a most solemn penalty. "And the Lord God commanded the man, saying," etc. The having some command which we can break is evidently essential to our first notions of moral accountableness; but further than this the restriction placed upon our first parents seems not intended to go. The sanction, or penalty in case of the breach of the covenant, "In the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.". While yet we live, while yet we hear the words of invitation, the door is not shut, and we may pass to it by the narrow way. Another law which Adam was obliged, by the covenant of works, to yield obedience to, was the positive symbolical law, forbidding him to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil recorded in the text. Secondly. The fact we have two contradictory accounts suggests we’re not expected to take either literally. It was a most proper moral instrument, and suitable mean, to retain man in his integrity, who, though a happy creature, was yet a changeable one. What remained was the promise of a Savior. Therefore it is called the natural law. VIII. And here God showed —. The natural root of mankind, from which all the generations of men on the face of the earth spring. 2. What was the meaning of “the tree of the knowledge of good and evil”? God made the tree alone, not with Adam’s help. Hence man's sin was the greater. This death brought with it all manner of infinite ills and woes. That chariot which the first Adam drove, went not far till it was all shattered, and made unfit to carry any to heaven. The internet gives us access to much knowledge. Anyway, it doesn’t read like an information text – much more like a story. 2. The instant appearance of that feeling showed, that man now for the first time knew his capacities, tendencies, and opportunities for sin. What does that mean for me thousands of years later? The tree of the knowledge of good and evil (Genesis 2:17). But what were its immediate effects? There was nothing mysterious about it, nothing in which man could mistake, nothing which could leave room for the question, Am I obeying or not? 2. We have next to ask the meaning of the precept which that covenant contained; a precept which sometimes seems so strange and arbitrary: which some interpretations, indeed, describe as really strange and arbitrary; namely, that while freely indulged in every other earthly blessing, man was forbidden to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. 4. The Church is struggling on. 1. Serves to explain many ambiguous passages. Tonight we heard the second creation account. But mark, the drops of which that stream is composed are living men. Such a change took place, not merely in his physical condition, but in his mind and heart — so much remorse and foreboding, so many dark thoughts about his dissolution — that he died: his innocency died, his hopes died, his peace died. The gospel spreads from heart to heart, and from lip to lip (cf. 22). More particularly —(1) To display the lustre of His manifold or variegated wisdom (Ephesians 3:10). "To be carnally minded is death." For His own glory, which is the supreme end of all His actions. THE THREATENED PENALTIES OF DISOBEDIENCE. "In the day that thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die." Hence it follows —(1) That in as far as this law was obeyed, the natural law was obeyed; and the breaking of the former was the breaking of the latter also. God is by nature supreme in all His natural and moral attributes. III. This serves to humble all flesh, and beat down the pride of all created glory, under the serious consideration of the great loss we have sustained by Adam's fall, and the sad effects thereof upon us. Genesis 2:9 “And out of the ground made the Lord God to grow…the tree of knowledge of good and evil”. 3. 2. The covenant itself runs in terms as delivered to one person: "Thou mayest — Thou shalt" (vers. Wherein the law respecting the tree of the knowledge of good and evil was UNLIKE SOME LAWS which God has given to mankind. Nevertheless no one has a shadow of right in the original nature of things to the use of any other. IX. Once I read the story in this way, it makes me think…. But the tree of life reappears again in the book of Revelation. 6. This supremacy alone is sufficient to give Him the throne of the universe, and clothe Him with the highest possible authority, to give law to all His intelligent creatures in every part of His vast dominions. However, when two deaf parents wished to choose a deaf embryo – so their child could be fully part of their, deaf, community – the law did not allow this. As to this representation by Adam, we may note —. "The wages of sin is death." The promise to be accomplished to man upon his performance of the condition. He set him up with a good stock, in a noble case, making him His covenant party. Concerning man in his fallen state. V. OUR ABUNDANCE, AND DELIGHTS, AND PLEASURES MUST BE USED IN FEAR AND WITHIN THE LIMITS OF OBEDIENCE. There is nothing wrong with “the knowledge of good and evil” in itself—Genesis 3:22 says God has it: “Then the Lord God said, ‘Behold, the man has become like one of us in knowing good and evil. It was taking something made with God's character and acting contrary to that character. And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat:…. Literally, "Dying thou shalt die." This representation was just and equal, though we did not make choice of Adam for that effect. See the deplorable condition of all Adam's posterity by reason of the breach of this covenant. The discovery of nuclear fission led to nuclear weapons as well as nuclear power. But sin came, and death; present possession was lost. Wherefore, before Adam could be obliged to perfect obedience, he behoved to have ability competent for it; otherwise that saying of the wicked and slothful servant had been true (Matthew 25:24). (See Numbers 14:23-35). And that especially because it is directed against the majesty of God Himself, whose authority is slighted and despised, when His laws and commandments are disobeyed. Genesis 1-3 #9 For direction, for man is unfit to chose his own way, being through his ignorance so apt to mistake evil for good: neither is any able to find out what is truly good but God alone, who is goodness itself; and His will the rule of goodness which none can find out or reveal but Himself (1 Corinthians 2:11). The Lord hath need of all. The products of creative power were all very good (Genesis 1:31). The tree of life (Genesis 2:9). But I think one reason knowledge is dangerous is that deciding whether we are using it for good or evil is often not obvious. (Genesis 2:16). Herein man's obedience was to turn upon the precise point of respect to the will of God, which was a trial of his obedience exactly suited to the state he was then in, and by which the most glaring evidence of true obedience would have been given. 2. 1. "Where is now thy God?" The tree of the knowledge of good & evil mentioned in scripture only in this verse, largely because its effects have become widespread. 2. We Have lost all that is good and valuable, the image and favour of God, and have incurred the wrath and displeasure of a holy God. 2. Serves to explain many ambiguous passages. Serves to explain many ambiguous passages. THE TIME SPECIFIED IN THE TEXT. The law of paradise was like all other Divine laws in regard to its condemning power. THE TIME SPECIFIED IN THE TEXT. Fr Leo Benjamin. IV. It is two fold — stinged and unstinged death. To show us that it is only obedience and conformity to His will that God respects, and not She matter or substance of the thing itself in which He requires it. 2. Augustine of Hippo believed that humanity inherited sin itself and the guilt for Adam and Eve's sin. Spiritual death, which is the death of the soul and spirit of man (Ephesians 2:1, where the apostle mentions a being "dead in trespasses and sins"). He was her head. The condition required to entitle him to this benefit, namely, obedience. To have enjoyed free access to both from the beginning would have raised him above the rank which was suited to a being who was as yet so utterly untried. Every Divine law has a condemning power; that is, a power to condemn those who are bound by it, and actually transgress it. 1. In Christian tradition, consuming the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil was the sin committed by Adam and Eve that led to the fall of man in Genesis 3.. (b) His will was endowed with righteousness (Ephesians 4:24). "Christ hath abolished death."3. 8. Antecedent to the behest of the Creator, the only indefeasible right to all the creatures lay in Himself. 1. He stands supreme among the whole intelligent creation, in point of power, wisdom, and goodness, which are the most amiable and essential qualifications of a lawgiver. It was a simple prohibition. 1. Parents who are likely to pass on horrific genetic diseases can choose to end, or never to start, pregnancies that will lead to short, painful lives…a good thing? III. “Of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day you eat of it you shall die.”. Featuring a sermon puts it on the front page of the site and is the most effective way to bring this sermon to the attention of thousands including all mobile platforms + newsletter. 5. When it reopened, a quarter of the children had died. His supreme authority over the creature man, founded on man's natural dependence on Him as his Creator (Romans 11:36). The distinction of merit in actions and things is expressed in the epithets "good and evil." It was pleasing to the eye, it was exciting to the appetite, it was easy to grasp, and, if the eye of God would but slumber, it might be partaken of unobserved. The parties contracting, God and man; God requiring obedience as the condition of life; a penalty fixed in case of breaking; and man acquiescing in the proposal. Adam was undoubtedly the most fit choice. But I proceed. Secondly: Real death, which is the execution of the sentence (Deuteronomy 29:19, 20); the threatened evils and punishments contained in the curse of the law coming upon him. (2) Man was created in the image of God (Genesis 1:27). ), (5)Moral forebodings.II. 3. 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