Wednesday, June 01, 2011

“May Adam Eat From Any Tree?”

Question: Genesis 1:29 God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the surface of all the earth, and every tree which has fruit yielding seed; it shall be food for you.” This is followed by Genesis 2:16 where God says, “The LORD God commanded the man, saying, ‘From any tree of the garden you may eat freely.” Then in Genesis 2:17, God forbids eating saying, “but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you will surely die." So which is it: may Adam eat from any tree, or not?

Answer: I remember visiting my grandmother through the summers and especially looked forward to all those wonderful things that came from her kitchen. As long as I had permission, I could eat anything—but there was one thing I could not eat. Right in the middle of the table was a bowl of fruit. I could not eat that, and it was not because I did not have her permission. It was because it was not edible fruit—it was plastic!

Adam may eat from any tree given for food. As a matter of fact, he must eat from every tree given for food or else he will die. Look at Genesis 2:9, “Out of the ground the LORD God caused to grow every tree that is pleasing to the sight and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.” Adam has a choice that depends on man’s obedience to God—if he does not eat, he dies. Man must live by eating! If Adam dies, who will work the soil?

But is every tree for food?  There is one tree that is not for food and it is identified separately from every other tree: Adam must not eat from this tree, or he will die by eating. Adam has a choice that depends on his obedience to God. Would he die because it was inedible? No but because he disobeyed God’s command.

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