Genesis 2:16-17: “And the Lord God commanded man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.”
The curse of man happened after the eating of the fruit from the tree in the garden. It wasn’t so much the fruit that resulted in the curse, but Adam and Eve’s act of disobedience to God’s one command. But, how did the first two humans even know what sin was?
At this point in history, there was no evil affecting the world. The creation was still “very good.” Sin had not yet entered the world. God gave commands on what Adam and Eve could do and specifically told them not to eat from the one tree in the garden. By knowing that it would be wrong to eat from the tree, Adam and Eve had the knowledge of what was wrong. They knew it would be wrong to disobey God by breaking this one rule. They chose to break the rule, and sin entered the world afterward.
It’s similar to telling a child not to touch a hot stove. Inevitably, the child is going to touch it and get burned. Through the child’s disobedience, he suffered the consequence (injury). Likewise, God forbade the eating of the one tree in the garden because of its consequence (physical death, curse on humans, animals, and the earth). Adam and Eve knew it was wrong, but they still did it.
It should also be added that Adam and Eve were created in God’s image, which means they understood right from wrong because God’s standards for right and wrong are part of His character. Laws in this world are in place regardless of them being spoken or written down. For example, gravity will take effect regardless of your knowledge of gravity. If you visit a city and don’t know the speed limit, and then get caught speeding, you are still guilty of breaking the law even though you didn’t know the speed limit.
The created world was “very good” when God finished it, but it soon took a turn for the worse when Adam rebelled against God’s command. Ever since then, curse, suffering, disease, and death have infiltrated the Earth, causing it to be far from “very good.” Christians have the hope of eternal life in heaven where everything will be restored and we will live with God forever in a curse-free environment. Compare the created world with heaven below:
Adam and Eve, realizing they were naked, sewed together leaves to cover up their nudity. This was their own work being done in an attempt to cover their sin. God sacrificed an animal and used the dead animal’s skin to provide garments for Adam and Eve. An animal had to die to atone for their sins and provide the covering for their nudity. Blood was shed, and without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sins (Heb. 9:22). Adam’s rebellion was a real event, but it was also prophetic of how about 4,000 years later, Jesus would be sacrificed to cover the sins of the world. Our own works (clothes made of leaves) do not atone for our sin, but the blood of a blameless sacrifice (Jesus) made the full atonement. Jesus chose to redeem his creation from the mess that it created. This is true, unconditional love. Putting our faith in Jesus and confessing our sins to him guarantees us a life in Heaven with him.
Adam was the first man created and he sinned, causing a separation between God and his creation. We are all decedentsof Adam and therefore all have this separation. We are all born of Adam, have the sin nature, and are destined to die in a cursed world. Jesus, who was fully man and fully God, came to restore the creation after Adam. Through our Redeemer, we can be born again and live with him in Heaven for eternity, where there will be no more curse.
We know about dinosaurs through the fossilrecord, and fossils are, of course, dead animals. These fossils are found worldwide in sedimentary rock layers. The majority of these fossils and rock layers were formed during Noah’s Flood. The flood was an act of God’s judgment, showing that he does not tolerate sin forever. We can use fossils to remind people of the deadly effects of sin.
In Gen 1:30 we see that God has given to all living things (plants excluded) permission to eat from every green herb (plant life). This excludes the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil(Gen. 2:17) Remember, there was no death or blood shed at this time, so no people or animals were eating anything that was alive (that is, anything with blood in it). Plants and fruits were used as the only source of food. After the fall of man, sin entered the world and animals began to eat other animals. Blood was shed and death occurred. We find fossils of fish in the process of eating other fish, so this shows that before the great flood, animals were eating each other. Most likely, people were eating animals as well, but God did not give permission for animal consumption until after the flood (Gen 9:3).
Some may ask why dinosaurs have sharp teeth if they did not use them to eat meat. That is a reasonable question, but the presence of sharp teeth do not require that an animal eats meat. Sharp teeth are needed for tearing certain plants and opening certain fruits. Pandas have sharp teeth but they only eat bamboo and vegetation. Bears have sharp teeth but some bears are strictly vegetarian. Some species of bats eat fruit, nectar, insects, small animals, and blood, but you could not determine this by the shape of their teeth.
After the flood, God commanded the people to spread throughout the world. However, they rebelled and chose to stay together in one community. They built a city and a tower to the heavens, thus trying to make a name for themselves. This was an act of rebellion against God, so God confused their languages, making it impossible for them to communicate with each other. The people then left the area and spread across the globe, creating new civilizations, cultures, and languages.
After Adam’s sin of rebellion, his children and all of the coming generations would be affected by sin, and the end result would be death. Sin and corruption “flooded” the Earth up to the point that everyone was wicked. Everyone did whatever they thought was right in their own eyes (relative morality). God, grieving over the utter depravity of society, chose to destroy the evil in the world with a global flood (Gen. 6:5-8; Gen. 6:13) and start anew with Noah, his family, and two of each kindof animal that was on the ark. Noah was a righteous man and that is why God chose him, but still, Noah had sin in his life because he was a descendantof Adam. Some may not think that it was fair for God to destroy all life. Remember that although God is love but he is also just, and he judges sin. If God let evil run rampant forever, what kind of protector would he be?
Eve is the mother of all human beings. God cursed her and her offspring by increasing the pain she would experience during childbirth. Also, God created division between husband and wife, where the wife would want to rule over the husband, but the husband would be the one ruling over her instead. This does not mean, though, that the wife would be a submissive slave. The husband is to love his wife like Christ loves the church (his followers). The husband is to be willing to make sacrifices and love her unconditionally. This curse on Eve is similar to the theological term of Federal Headship.
After the fall, Adam was cursed by making his work more difficult. Adam was in charge of growing crops for food, and as implied by the text, prior to the Fall it was not a difficult task. The curse resulted in the work being more difficult because thorns and thistles started to grow. You can imagine Adam sticking his hand down and getting stuck by a painful thorn. He also had to work by the sweat of his brow, implying that the heat would make it more difficult for him, such as causing him to become fatigued and have to rest, thus slowing down his progress.
Restoring the Authority of the Bible, Starting with the very first Book