The Cause of the Human Condition and its Remedy
Dr. John P. Davis
The Bible does not offer a definitive explanation of how evil entered the universe. We know from the Bible that Satan, a created being, is evil and that he existed prior to the fall of man. Scriptures do not explain how Satan became evil. They simply present him as evil and as God’s opponent as he enters the stage in the drama of human life.
Satan’s method of deceit in the Garden of Eden brings about the fall of humanity and sets the pattern for all future deceptions. In the temptation (Genesis 3:1-5) Satan entices Eve to eat of the forbidden Tree of the Knowledge of good and evil. God had set this test so that Adam and Eve would experience moral discernment at the highest level of obedience.
Satan asserted doubt concerning God’s ways and he attacked God’s character by implying that God was unfair in not giving Adam and Eve access to every tree. He focused on the negative prohibition. Eve succumbed to Satan’s wiles. She misquoted God’s permission, God’s prohibition, and God’s penalty. She made the fatal mistake of not being careful with the Word of God.
Satan responded by blatantly denying God’s word. Satan essentially said, 1) You won’t reap what you sow; 2) God fears, rather than loves man; 3) You can be independent of God; 4) There is efficacy in things; 5) Don’t trust God’s Word. Satan propagates these same lies today.
Satan succeeded in taking Eve’s focus from God to self. Now that God is questioned, she trusts her own reasoning and Eve acts by sight rather than by faith. She sees; she covets; she takes; she draws others (Adam) into sin. The consequences of sin (3:7-12) are separation, alienation, and anguish. There had been harmony between God and man; man and man; man and animals; man and land. Now all harmony is gone as God’s word and order are violated. The woman listens to Satan, the man listens to the woman, and then the man attempts to have God listen to him.
Every human is infected by the sin of the parents of the human race. As Romans 5:12 states: Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because all sinned.