How Did the Devil Deceive Eve?
The devil deceived Eve with a question that looked innocent but was full of deceit. He said to her, “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’?” (Genesis 3:1). The devil intended that his words should be indefinite and ambiguous. He wanted to sow doubt in the heart of Eve concerning God’s divine commandment and the reasonableness of such a command.
Instead of turning away and fleeing to her husband, Eve showed signs of doubt and a readiness to engage in a conversation with the serpent. Eve answered, “We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die’” (Genesis 3:2,3).
Then, the devil’s second statement had the deceptive appearance of an authoritative truth. But the truth was most cleverly mixed with falsehood. He said, “You will not surely die” (verse 4). Satan challenged the truthfulness of God’s word by an unconcealed lie. “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 3:5).
The devil charged God with: Envy of His creatures and falsehood. He said, God lied when He said death would follow the eating of the fruit. God’s requirements were placed in the most deceiving light. By mixing truth with falsehood, the devil tried to confuse the mind of Eve, in order to make it difficult for her to distinguish between God’s words and his.
And he continued, “you will be like God” (Genesis 3:5). This reveals most the blasphemous nature of Satan’s words and the full measure of his deception. The devil himself coveted God’s position but not His character of love. For the devil said, “I will ascend above the heights of the clouds, I will be like the Most High’” (Isaiah 14:14). Thus, the devil used his lies to deceive the women for this reason Christ was right in calling him “the father of lies” (John 8:44).
After doubt and unbelief in God’s word, “the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate” (Genesis 3:6). Eve was already guilty in her mind of transgressing the divine command, “Thou shalt not covet” (Exodus 20:17). The act of taking the fruit and eating it was only the natural result of walking in the path of transgression.
But the Lord in His great mercy, planned a way of redemption of the deadly consequences of sin. Jesus offered to pay the penalty of disobedience by His death on the cross. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). Through God love, it becomes possible for men to be “called the sons of God” (1 John 3:1). “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13).
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