G 3-5 and G 3-22 : So satan was only telling the truth?


:thumbsup: I also agree that is well said.


Joseie … that is the lie he told to Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, and both were banished from Paradise.


Two or three more posts are seen quite agreeing with this.I don’t know why.Satan never told that the acquisition of the knowledge was desirable.He only told the fact which God for some reason did not tell them.They acted on their own on hearing this and on seeing that "the tree was good to eat, and fair to the eyes, and delightful to behold: " They acted on their free will. Maximum ,satan can be blamed for telling the fact.


What fact do you think God did not tell Adam and Eve? As I see it, the only real info God withheld from Adam and Eve was the nature of the death they would experience the day they ate of the forbidden fruit, namely, that they would immediately experience spiritual death, the worse kind of death because its effect, if not remedied, is eternal.

God did not explicitly tell Adam and Eve that they would acquire the knowledge of good and evil if they ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil but that should have been obvious to them from the tree’s name, which God told Adam back in Genesis 2:16-17:
16 And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “You may freely eat of every tree of the garden; 17 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 die.”

Satan’s lie to Adam and Eve was that they would not die because they did die spiritually when they ate the fruit and they died physically many years later.


What conclusion are you ultimately driving at? That Satan is helpful to us?


1.The fact which God did not tell them was that if the fruit is eaten they will know good and evil and will become like gods.The view that it was obvious from the name of the tree etc.is weak.After having heard what God told about the tree ( death) it is not at all likely that they will go by the name of the tree . Thus what is obvious is that they got the information from satan only.
2.Regarding death. God told them that if the fruit is eaten they will die.In the normal circumstances, let us say even today,if some body tells you so what is your understanding? A Physical death immediately or soon after eating the fruit.Satan knew that they were under that(wrong) belief.So his telling them that they will not die can’t be called a lie.


We need not keep a completely negative picture about satan as some body to be hated most and to be avoided at any cost.Only thing is that we should be cautious about his deceptive ways and should be able to overcome his temptation.Though he is generally considered as the embodiment of evil who refuse to accept the power and glory of God and trying to keep away people from God , it can be seen from the scriptures that he played some positive roles also and God was not that much in enimity with him or trying to avoid him .Book of Job show that they were atleast in talking terms and God even acceded to his request and permitted him to do certain things in order to prove Job’s faithfulness.Coming to the NT, he was given the role to test Jesus after the forty days fasting in desert. Of course I am not saying that he is helpful but that he is useful and can tell truth.


WOW. That is sad. And you say you are Catholic?


Knowledge of good and evil is not the criteria that makes one like God. That is slanderous to God. Satan slandered God’s goodness by making Him also evil which is a lie. Lies lies lies father of lies from the beginning lies about God.

Throw a rather unusual free-thinking demiurge in there too for good measure.


Do not deny what God confirmed. What effect satan told them will happen on eating the fruit, actually happened
Pl.seeG 3-22. Still lie ?


Yes, we gained a knowledge of good and evil, no we did not become like God. Please re-read what I said. Satan slandered God, claiming He was like what you and I am right now.


The Catholic Encyclopedia cites the devil’s role thusly:
It may be said of this name, as St. Gregory says of the word angel, “nomen est officii, non naturæ”—the designation of an office, not of a nature. For the Greek word (from diaballein, “to traduce”) means a slanderer, or accuser, and in this sense it is applied to him of whom it is written “the accuser ho kategoros] of our brethren is cast forth, who accused them before our God day and night” (Apocalypse 12:10). It thus answers to the Hebrew name Satan which signifies an adversary, or an accuser [bold added].

So, the Church acknowledges the devil’s role, but it does not follow that we show him any pity, nor that we attribute any goodness that may come out of his evil to him, but rather to God, who works through evil to bring about a greater good (refer to the Catechism, par. 395).

To the OP: was Satan telling the truth, at bottom? We must assert, No! because nothing evil can come of the truth. Yet evil did come of the serpent’s assertions, so they are essentially lies. The Catechism says:
Truth or truthfulness is the virtue which consists in showing oneself true in deeds and truthful in words, and guarding against duplicity, dissimulation, and hypocrisy [bold added] (par. 2505).
A lie is not always a simple, verbal contradiction of observable facts. A lie is anything that intentionally skews one’s perception of the truth. And the Catechism very clearly explains:
Scripture witnesses to the disastrous influence of the one Jesus calls “a murderer from the beginning”, who would even try to divert Jesus from the mission received from his Father. “The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil.” In its consequences the gravest of these works was the mendacious seduction that led man to disobey God [bold added] (par. 394).

Let’s first acknowledge what God allowed for the two humans: practically everything. Adam and Eve are given free reign in the garden, to eat of whatever tree they want. “The LORD God gave the man this order: You are free to eat from any of the trees of the garden except the tree of knowledge of good and evil” (Gen. 2:16-17). Notwithstanding the exceptional phrase, the man is given permission to do whatsoever he pleases. The Church has traditionally interpreted the many trees of the garden as representing all the things that make earthly life wonderful, whether it be science or art or sexuality or social relationships etc. And God indulges humanity because their glory is ultimately his own, per St. Irenaeus who famously said, “Gloria Dei est vivens homo!”; the glory of God is a living man!

Recognize that the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil is acknowledged in the text as an essentially good creation: “Out of the ground the LORD God made grow every tree that was delightful to look at and good for food, with the tree of life in the middle of the garden and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil [bold added]” (Gen. 2:9); “The woman saw that the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eyes, and the tree was desirable for gaining wisdom” (Gen. 3:6a). The point here is that the food was taken, not given by God in his own time. Only God can grant true wisdom. A human’s attempts to self-guide his life results only in a caving-in on himself, which is why St. Augustine coined the insight of a man “incurvatus in se,” or curved in on himself.

The serpent says, “God knows well that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened and you will be like gods, who know good and evil” (Gen. 3:5). But the man and woman’s arrogating to themselves God’s prerogative to know perfectly the nature of good and evil should not be interpreted as a serious transformation into wise creatures but rather the donning of a semblance of the divine, a futile attempt that asymptotically approaches real wisdom but never achieves any aspect of it. The serpent lied in that he made the woman believe the former sense (the bolded portion). The serpent’s lie is the very lie we tell ourselves in rejecting God in service to our own will; it is true only in our own self-serving minds. And this is precisely what the biblical text affirms about the outcome of the Fall: “Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked” (Gen. 3:7a). Notice just how their eyes were opened: they were opened to the reality of themselves, as they became uncomfortably self-conscious and combative against the external, instead of witnessing outwardly and tending earnestly to the glory of God’s creation (refer to the Catechism, par. 319 & 400).

The serpent was opposed to, not for, wisdom.


St. John Chrysostom has this to say about the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil:

You see, it wasn’t because it supplied knowledge that it is called that, but because (133a) the transgression of the command happened to concern the tree, and from that event knowledge of sin then entered the scene, and shame as well that was why the name was given.
(page 219)

The fruit did not “contain” knowledge. So it would be false to think that after consuming fruit Adam & Eve now had all facts/truths about good and evil in their intellects.

Pope John Paul II had some very good insights on The Tree of Knowledge in his
Splendor of Truth Encyclical. As he notes, the “knowledge of good and evil” has to do with the moral law.
(Underlining is mine)

  1. In the Book of Genesis we read: "The Lord God commanded the man, saying, ‘You may eat freely of every tree of the garden; 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 die’ " (Gen 2:16-17).

With this imagery, Revelation teaches that the power to decide what is good and what is evil does not belong to man, but to God alone. The man is certainly free, inasmuch as he can understand and accept God’s commands. And he possesses an extremely far-reaching freedom, since he can eat “of every tree of the garden”. But his freedom is not unlimited: it must halt before the “tree of the knowledge of good and evil”, for it is called to accept the moral law given by God. In fact, human freedom finds its authentic and complete fulfilment precisely in the acceptance of that law. God, who alone is good, knows perfectly what is good for man, and by virtue of his very love proposes this good to man in the commandments.


And from his General Audience Catechesis on Original Sin given in the Fall of 1986:

Part II
5…… **The tree signifies the insurmountable limit for man and for any creature however perfect. **The creature, in fact, is always merely a creature and not God. Certainly he cannot claim to be like God, “to know good and evil” like God. God alone is the source of all being, God alone is absolute Truth and Goodness according to which good and evil are measured and from which they receive their distinction. God alone is the eternal Legislator from whom every law in the created world derives and in particular the law of human nature. Man as a rational creature knows this law and should let himself be guided by it in his own conduct. He cannot himself pretend to establish the moral law, to decide himself what is good and what is bad, independently of the Creator, even against the Creator. Neither man nor any other creature can set himself in the place of God, claiming for himself the mastery of the moral order, contrary to creation’s own ontological constitution.



Weak? Sacred Scripture says, “for each tree is known by its own fruit. For figs are not gathered from thorns, nor are grapes picked from a bramble bush.” (Luke 6:44)


I said weak for the reason mentioned in that post itself. That is having heard the effect of its fruit from God that its fruit will cause death , Adam could not have imagined that it can also bring knowledge of good and evil.The benefit of the verses from Luke was surely not available to him at that time.


This is one of the most bizarre discussions…


What do you think Adam imagined Satan’s words in Gen 3:5 -: “you will become like God” - meant? In what way would Adam imagined he would become like God if he ate the fruit from the forbidden Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil?


Consider the whole picture.God tells that don’t eat the fruit ,you will die .Satan tells that you wouldn’t die and that God told them otherwise because God knew that on eating the fruit they will know good and evil and become like gods.The fruit was found to be fair to the eyes ,good to eat etc.They believed Satan and ate it. Fortunately or unfortunately what satan told came to be true .They did not die ,got the knowledge and became like gods as found by God .


Read my first post. I deal with all this.


You didn’t answer my question.
Yes, do consider the whole picture.
The name of the tree was “the knowledge of good and evil”, and Adam knew that was it’s name. (BTW, Adam also knew the importance of what things were named. cf Gen 2:20. Also, it was evidently God who named the tree & Adam knew that.).
Satan tells them the fruit will make them “like God”.
So, considering the name of the tree, what do you think Satan’s words – ( “you will become like God” meant to Adam?

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