Did God Lie to Adam?

When the Lord put the first man upon the earth in the Garden of Eden, there was only one commandment with consequence for him to keep. This particular commandment concerns one particular tree in the Garden of Eden, the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Violation of this commandment carries a death penalty.

Genesis 2:15: And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.

Genesis 2:16: And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:

Genesis 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.

With regards to dressing the garden and to be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth, these works do not carry any adverse consequence. In the absence of death, those works only keep Adam meaningfully occupied. Adam has no expiry date on him.

However, concerning the death penalty to be meted out upon transgression of this commandment, it was very specific. Death would result in the day should Adam transgress.

Whether Adam fully understood the severity of the consequence of death, it is a subject of conjecture. No death has occurred on earth yet. So what does it mean to die and what pains and sufferings are involved regarding death in an environment absence of death are some thoughts to consider. For the scripture does record that even the Son of God has to taste death as a man.

Hebrews 2:9: But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.

So the subject of death became a tool for Satan to exploit when trying to seduce Eve to transgress the only commandment with the death penalty. The devil was cunning indeed as he approached Eve instead of Adam who was the original recipient of the commandment not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

Genesis 3:1: Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?

Genesis 3:2: And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:

Genesis 3:3: But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.

Eve’s reply to Satan’s crafty questioning was not accurate either. She added her own version of God’s commandment to include touching the forbidden tree.

In addition, God’s confirmed death penalty had been reduced to a punishment with a probable chance of mitigation with the introduction of the word “lest” added to her reply.

So the concept of death seems to be rather nebulous. With sufficient rewards, the punishment of death might appear to be a worthwhile gamble.

With Eve’s unscriptural response, this gave the devil room to enter for the final kill. It is noteworthy to know that Christians are commanded not to give place to the devil.

Ephesians 4:27: Neither give place to the devil.

Hence, Satan had gotten a foothold into this game of toying with Eve to succumb to his wiles.

Ephesians 6:11: Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.

Genesis 3:4: And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:

Firstly, Satan contradicted God’s commandment assuring Eve she would not die. He won’t have this chance if Eve had ignored him and not talked about death. How much did Eve know about death living in an environment where death was absent?

With Eve’s watered down view of death, this was an opportunity for the devil. To induce Eve to transgress, a reward was dangled before her to consider transgressing against God.

Genesis 3:5: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.

Genesis 3:6: And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.

So having done her cost and benefit analysis, the rest was history. Man fell into transgression and subsequently, everyone that comes into this world is born dead in trespasses and sins.

Ephesians 2:1: And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins;

God’s pronouncement of judgment came quick and swift after this incident. The consequences that followed were anything but pretty. Man and woman though not cursed directly, have to suffer during their lifetime living on earth.

Genesis 3:16: Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.

Genesis 3:17: And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;

Genesis 3:18: Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;

Genesis 3:19: In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.

However, the death penalty that was supposed to be meted out to Adam and Eve was withheld. Earth has not experienced death as yet but ironically, it was animals on earth that had to experience death first. The Lord had to make coats of skins to cover the nakedness of the fallen Adam and Even. Their homemade fig leaves cover just won’t do.

Genesis 3:21: Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.

So what happened to God’s immutability with regards to His decreed promise of rewards and punishment? Adam and Eve deserved death but they were spared. Instead, innocent animals took their place.

Moreover, Adam and Eve were subsequently banned from having access to the tree of life. The reason being Adam and Eve after acquiring the knowledge of good and evil had become as god as far as God’s attributes are concerned.

Genesis 3:22: And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:

Genesis 3:23: Therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken.

Genesis 3:24: So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.

This seems to make what Satan told Eve valid and true. God’s acknowledgement that man having acquired the knowledge of good and evil alluded to an upgrade to their status.

Furthermore, Adam and Eve did not die, which was what Satan told Eve. On the surface, what Satan told Eve was correct and they did not die after this transgression.

It was the poor animals that had to die.

Hence, Adam and Eve had to experience what death entailed. It was no longer a concept they hardly understood and fully grasped before their transgression.

So did God lie to Adam and Eve concerning the death penalty?

It appears that what Satan told Eve was more truthful.

Some suggested that Adam and Eve died spiritually immediately after their transgression. Death simply means separation from God. God can no longer fellowship with fallen men. This may sound logical but not entirely true and not according to scriptural fact.

The scripture shows that God did continue to interact with men and fellowship with them. Apart from Adam and Eve, God also dealt with their children Cain and Abel.

Genesis 4:3: And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD.

Genesis 4:4: And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering:

Genesis 4:5: But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.

Here the Lord accepted Abel’s offering but Cain’s offering was not.

These two sons of Adam though born dead in trespasses and sins had not transgressed any of God’s commandment for there was none given to them.

However, they did approach God with their offerings voluntarily. No written commandments were given with regards to such offerings other than the pattern they received from their father Adam concerning coats of skins to cover their nakedness and not fig leaves.

Although the Lord did not accept Cain’s offering, he was not treated as an outcast. Cain was assured he could do better and would be accepted as well.

Genesis 4:6: And the LORD said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen?

Genesis 4:7: If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.

Moreover, even after Cain murdered his brother Abel due to jealousy, the Lord continued to deal with Cain and even protected him from vengeance.

Genesis 4:14: Behold, thou hast driven me out this day from the face of the earth; and from thy face shall I be hid; and I shall be a fugitive and a vagabond in the earth; and it shall come to pass, that every one that findeth me shall slay me.

Genesis 4:15: And the LORD said unto him, Therefore whosoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold. And the LORD set a mark upon Cain, lest any finding him should kill him.

In addition, years later another of Adam’s descendant Enoch had such close fellowship with the Lord that he did not even experience death.

Genesis 5:24: And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.

Prophet Elijah is another case in point where he was taken to heaven in a chariot of fire.

2 Kings 2:11: And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.

So the Lord did and could fellowship with fallen men even though they are born dead in trespasses and sins. The question is whether God would accept fallen men and that is another subject altogether.

The problem is did God keep His promise to put Adam and Eve to death when they transgressed by partaking the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

Genesis 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.

It is pretty clear that God threatened Adam he would die in the day when he transgressed this particular commandment. But Adam and Eve did not die in the day of their transgression. They were allowed to live for many more years and Adam lived till ripe old age of 930 years.

Genesis 5:5: And all the days that Adam lived were nine hundred and thirty years: and he died.

This however, does not suggest God did not keep His promise to sentence Adam and Eve to death. The question has to do with when?

Execution was supposed to be on the day of their transgression. It seems to have been postponed till after 900 over years.

The contradiction concerns how man and God reckon time and day. Men living on earth consider a twenty-four hours day. But God who created heaven and earth is not restricted to earthly time and day measurement. Peter informed us one day with the Lord is as a thousand years.

2 Peter 3:8: But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.

A day may be very short for the Lord but for mere human creatures residing on earth, a thousand years is a super long period of time.

So Adam who lived to 930 years actually died that same day as far as the Lord is concerned when he transgressed God’s commandment.

There is no contradiction of scriptures here with the Lord failing to keep His promise. In fact, no man ever lives past a thousand years before he dies. The oldest man ever lived was Methuselah.

Genesis 5:27: And all the days of Methuselah were nine hundred sixty and nine years: and he died.

Other than Enoch and Elijah who did not experience death, all men born dead in trespasses and sins do not live past one day in the Lord’s reckoning of days.

The Psalmist also rightly concludes.

Psalms 90:4: For a thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is past, and as a watch in the night.

Psalms 84:10: For a day in thy courts is better than a thousand. I had rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness.

So the Lord indeed kept His promise to put Adam and Eve to death in the day of their transgression.

The Lord also promised eternal life to Adam’s lost and helpless race of fallen men.

Titus 1:2: In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began;

1 John 5:11: And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.

1 John 5:12: He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.

1 John 5:13: These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.

As such, you need not die just because of Adam’s transgression.

Come to the Lord and receive His Son as your eternal salvation today.


Attending One’s Own Funeral

South Koreans have taken the world by storm with their k-pop culture, Korean drama series and fashion. Seldom you will find Asian and even some Western women not well aware of the latest Korean drama or the up to date news of well-liked and well-known Korean artists. This is the commercial aspect of Korea being projected to the world; a glittering utopian paradise of sort where women and men are beautiful and good looking living up the good life.

However, one Korean King James Bible believing preacher called the capital of South Korea Seoul, “Sodom”. A recent documentary presented South Korea in a very different light from what the world is known to have understood. It is a cruel society that has lost its soul where suicide occurs every 33 minutes. That is quite astounding and unflattering for a nation of significant economic prowess where big corporations such as Samsung is giving Apple a run for its money on electronic and digital products. So stripping away the phenomenal facade of success, South Korea is just another country where many are left behind and the elderly are abandoned and left to die alone.

The documentary portrays attending one’s funeral as some therapeutic remedy for those afflicted with suicidal thoughts where participants are reborn after the experience to get back to life with a new found meaning and a new perspective in life. Sadly, the cold and cruel reality of the world around them won’t change and the constant slavery of making a living will still continue to plague them for the rest of their lives living out a meaningless existence. This rebirth experience is definitely not going to change reality on the ground.

The Bible however, also talks about dying and being born again.

Firstly, every sinner in this world is born dead in trespasses and sins regardless of whether the sinner is conscious of this fact and reality. Every living human is already condemned to death and waiting for the final execution to come; that is the reality.

Ephesians 2:1: And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins;

For a Christian however, he has been quickened which means he no longer remains in this state stuck dead in trespasses and sins. He has moved on from that state and has acquired a new status and a new course of life. This is done by God who quickens the new believer with Christ being saved by the grace of God. While physical death is still true for a Christian, it is not an execution of condemnation awaiting for the wrath to come but a translation into the presence of the Lord continuing in this new life eternal.

Ephesians 2:4: But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us,

Ephesians 2:5: Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)

This theological fact is further explained by the apostle Paul writing to the believers in Rome.

Romans 6:7: For he that is dead is freed from sin.

Romans 6:8: Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him:

Romans 6:9: Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him.

Romans 6:11: Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Once a sinner believes in the Lord Jesus Christ and accepts Him as Lord and Saviour, his condemnation is already passed. He has been judged and executed together with Christ and died with Him on the cross of Calvary. When Christ rose from the dead, the new born child of God is likewise raised and he now lives together with the Lord in newness of life.

The apostle Paul also explained to believers in Galatia he had already been judged by the law and was already executed and dead to the law. He had then been reborn to live unto God.

Galatians 2:19: For I through the law am dead to the law, that I might live unto God.

In like manner, the apostle Paul also expounded to believers in Colosse concerning their death experience and the subsequent rebirth in Christ.

Colossians 2:13: And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses;

The apostle Paul also wrote to Timothy to remind him of this theological fact that as believers, we are already dead with Christ in the past but are now alive to live with the resurrected Lord.

2 Timothy 2:11: It is a faithful saying: For if we be dead with him, we shall also live with him:

Hence the new birth experience for a Christian is completely different from a man-made funeral event that leads to a psychological rebirth experience for suicidal persons. Christian new birth leads to hope and eternal life while the man-made psychological fake death experience simply provides an emotionally charged experience seeking to alter attitudes and change of mind concerning the struggles in this life.

Without a biblical new birth experience, there will be no hope and no eternal life to look forward to for a sinner struggling hopelessly in this fallen cruel world. As such, the Lord Jesus Christ requires a sinner to be born again in order to live. Every other sinner will remain dead in trespasses and sins struggling to find meaning in this life with no true life thereafter.

John 3:3: Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.

John 3:4: Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born?

John 3:5: Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.

John 3:6: That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

John 3:7: Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.

The first water birth by the flesh cannot see life and enter the kingdom of God. It requires the second birth by the Spirit that will accord life eternal. This process cannot be obtained by a man-made fake death experience. No middle man can facilitate the process to confer this second birth of the Spirit. It requires the sinner to simply come to Christ without any merit of his own but receives the Lord Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour.

John 1:12: But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

John 1:13: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

The born again sinner is conferred the title as a son of God. This new birth experience is not born of blood and of will of man through a gestation period but is an instantaneous event because it is effected by the Spirit of God. The Lord Jesus Christ confirms this fact that the reborn sinner has been passed from death unto life, explicitly mentioning everlasting life.

John 5:24: Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.

So the apostle Paul practised the art of dying daily to remind himself that he was already dead in Christ been judged by the law and then live on with Christ.

1 Corinthians 15:31: I protest by your rejoicing which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.

Thus Christians should reckon themselves to be already dead but are now alive with Christ and awaiting for redemption of a new body to live on eternally. Man-made psychological death experience in order to get an emotional high has no place for a child of God. Pity lost sinners wallowing in the mire of sorrows and despairs and may the Lord be merciful to draw many more struggling sinners to experience the true new birth in Christ.