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ETpro's avatar

If Adam and Eve didn't know right from wrong till after eating the forbidden fruit, how was it morally wrong to eat it?

Asked by ETpro (34145 points ) December 15th, 2013

Today’s Sunday question is all according to the Bible, Genisis 3. Per what is written in Genisis, the forbidden fruit came from a tree called the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Eve could not have known that eating it was wrong, because she had been designed by God to have no sense of right and wrong. God told her not to eat of that particular tree’s fruit, but the serpent told to do so. Without any moral sense, she went with the most recent instruction. Eve told Adam to try some, so he had the same defense. How is it fair and morally correct to not only condemn the primordial pair in their innocence, but to condemn all mankind, even those who have not yet been born?

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70 Answers

Dutchess_III's avatar

Because God TOLD them not to eat it. He said, “Don’t eat them apples offen that tree. Them’s my winta apples.”
Bye n bye the debil, he comes up and says, “What fo’ don’t you eat dem apples offen dat tree? Lord, he won’t know nothin’ ‘bout it!”
So Eve, she takes one. She takes a bite, she gives Adam a bite.
The debil, he pulls his freight.
By n bye the Lord he comes back and he says, “WHO’S BEEN EATIN MY WINTA APPLES!?”
Adam says, “Well, Eve, I spects.”
So he picks ‘em up by the nape of the neck, slack of de britches and THROWS ‘em over de fence! “YOU WORK FOR YO’ HASH!”

And that’s how it was. There’s more if you want it.

ragingloli's avatar

@Dutchess_III
And they did not know that it was wrong to disobey god either.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Their momma didn’t raise them right, then.

ragingloli's avatar

And that ‘momma’ in that case, is gawd.

Dutchess_III's avatar

But God’s a boy.

Dutchess_III's avatar

(Houston, we have a problem!)

josie's avatar

But people take all sorts of “lessons” from the Bible, including justification for redistribution of wealth and the virtue of obedience and worship of central authority, be it God, The Political Church, or The State.

Since they had no organized epistemology, no surprise that one more logical fallacy finds it’s origins in the campfire tales of the Ancients.

ragingloli's avatar

You would think, they would think these things through.
The inherent contradiction in that story only leads to 3 possible conclusions:
1. God is a dick.
2. God is an idiot, and a dick.
3. The story was conjured up by bronze age primitives stoned off their arses from consuming too much fermented goat blood.

elbanditoroso's avatar

Where did Adam and Eve’s belly buttons come from?

livelaughlove21's avatar

Children know not to touch a hot stove before they know right from wrong because the parents tell them not to. Blind faith.

Just a guess.

Lightlyseared's avatar

Can you ferment goats blood?

bolwerk's avatar

Wow, you identified a contradiction in the Bible. Hard!

Dutchess_III's avatar

@livelaughlove21 Actually, they don’t really learn “hot” until they actually burn themselves on something. You can tell them “NO!” a thousand times but until they understand WHY you’re saying “No,” there’s a good chance they’ll do it anyway. That’s how they eventually learn to trust what you say even if they don’t understand why.

ucme's avatar

The bible has more holes in it than a Star Trek plot, which is going some.

livelaughlove21's avatar

@Dutchess_III Exactly. They might still touch the stove just like Adam and Eve “ate the fruit.” They know they shouldn’t, but they don’t know why. Like I said, blind faith.

No Christian thinks Eve ate an actual piece of fruit, do they? She fucked Satan, then Adam. That’s why they suddenly realized they were “naked” and why she gave birth to Kane and Able – one was Adam’s son and one was Satan’s. Symbolism.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I don’t know if they actually believe that or not @livelaughlove21.

Dutchess_III's avatar

But Adam and Eve didn’t get a second chance. God told them not to do it, and they did it anyway, not knowing the consequences, so God kicked them out of the house. That doesn’t seem fair.

livelaughlove21's avatar

@Dutchess_III Nothing in the Bible was fair.

ragingloli's avatar

Fairness requires self restriction of one’s own biased opinions and desires.
The abrahamic god is all about his own will and domination.
Just ask all the unborn babies that he killed during the great flood, or the first born sons of Egypt.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Herrod was a perfect example of government doing things “In the name of God.”

filmfann's avatar

Continuing the war on Christians, I see…

They knew the difference between God and the serpent. They knew God was in charge.

ragingloli's avatar

@filmfann
Continuing to play the victim, I see…

Seek's avatar

Just saying, my son didn’t believe the stove was hot until I let him touch the oven door while I was baking.

El_Cadejo's avatar

I always viewed god as a bit of a dick in this story. “ok guys you can have ANYTHING you want like ANYTHING! But don’t touch the fruit from that awesome looking tree over there.” If god didn’t want them to eat it, put the fuckin tree on top of a mountain surrounded by active volcanoes or hell, don’t make the tree at all.

Furthermore, it’s called the tree of knowledge. God wanted us to live life being ignorant of the real world? Why?

“Hmmm, today I think I’m going to create some new beings in my image, but I’ll be damned if those creations of mine start thinking for themselves, no no, we can’t have that, rather they just blindly worship me for all eternity.”

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr Exactly.

@uberbatman….I’ve wondered that my self. They don’t know right from wrong before that, therefore there is no sin. But then they ate from the tree. I guess that was supposed to be a metaphor for when our mentality separated from that of other animals. I mean, cats and dogs can’t sin, right?

El_Cadejo's avatar

@Dutchess_III ” I guess that was supposed to be a metaphor for when our mentality separated from that of other animals” Maybe, but if that were the case, why is it viewed as a bad thing? I mean we have this whole “god made us special just like him” thing going on, so if we were like the animals(as god evidently intended) before consuming the fruit, we really wouldn’t be all that special, would we?

WillWorkForChocolate's avatar

Simple- because God told them not to eat it, and they disobeyed him. There’s no contradiction here, or twisty bullshit excuse. He specifically said, “Do NOT eat that fruit” but they did it anyway.

ragingloli's avatar

@WillWorkForChocolate
And as we already demolished that argument, they did not, could not know that disobedience is wrong.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Because then we became sinners @uberbatman. I guess that was the price we had to pay for intelligent thinking.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@livelaughlove21 You know your avatar showing in the questions doesn’t match the avatar in your account?

Seek's avatar

Let’s not forget that God knew the entire time that his people were going to fail to understand his instructions and disobey in the first place, and he still saw fit to punish them.

kess's avatar

The story play out exactly as intended.

The key in understanding the story is understanding the characters involved.
The character are known by the role which they fulfill.

Who is this God that gave this command?
Who is this Adam and why was the command given when he was Alone?
Who is Eve and how did she receive the command?
Who was this snake, that he actually know the command that was given?
What was it to him that the apple should be eaten?

This a story about a bluff and a double bluff, with the star Adam doing exactly the right thing and the trickster succeeding in tricking his own self.

livelaughlove21's avatar

@Dutchess_III Yep, Fluther glitch I guess. Changing my avatar via my iPhone is a mess.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Wait, if God gave Adam the command not to eat the apple when he was alone, why is Eve blamed for the whole mess??

El_Cadejo's avatar

@Dutchess_III Because she is a woman. Duh ~

ragingloli's avatar

written by men

Dutchess_III's avatar

Yep. Set us up to blame for their temptations. Islam does that to this day. That’s why women can’t show their faces or any part of their body.

Dutchess_III's avatar

ANDREW’S ON THE “HOW’S FLUTHER?” THREAD! They’re talking about getting rid of the social / general / meta designations. We must stop them!

filmfann's avatar

the serpent told (her) to do so. Without any moral sense, she went with the most recent instruction

The serpent did not instruct her. He tempted her, telling her she should eat it to become more like God.
Once she had bitten the fruit, she realized what she had done, and then gave the fruit to Adam.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Who was dumb enough to eat it too.

Coloma's avatar

They partook of some herbal essence in the garden and had the munchies so bad they did not care if they defied the lords command. lol

whitenoise's avatar

Free will and knowledge of good and bad were a consequence of eating that fruit, not a punishment. Eve eating that fruit set us free. With that came God letting us go…

The whole story is a metaphore for our growing up. We are born as children under the guise and wisdom of our parents, in our parents’ paradise.

Then we reach a phase where we will want to make our own choices. As a consequence we defy our parents, define our own morals and become exposed to the sometimes harsh reality of the world, in our quest to continue our lineage through procration.

You have to thank Eve and the snake (lust / sex drive), for without them we would never have grown up.

Eve having sex withs Satan… That is a new interesting farfetched interpretation…
HOw about that snake just being a part of Adam? Or is that so hard to pucture?

bea2345's avatar

If there is one story in the Bible that annoys me somewhat, it is this one. Not because of the punishment (for disobedience), but because of Genesis 3:12, And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat. My feeling has always been since my early days, “How like a man.” Was Adam trying to suggest that it was his wife’s fault?

Coloma's avatar

@bea2345 Exactly! Eve didn’t hold a spear to Adams throat, she extended her hand, his choice. Thank goodness I don;t buy into the greatest “story” ever told. lol

Dutchess_III's avatar

It always struck me as that way too.
The first response, which is mine, I pulled out a section of a sermon my dad would preach at odd, casual moments. He was raised in Texas and he won 50 cents for this sermon when he gave it at a county fair as a boy.

“By n bye the Lord he comes back and he says, “WHO’S BEEN EATIN MY WINTA APPLES!?”
Adam says, “Well, Eve, I spects.””

Yep. All her fault. For shame.

Besides, my avatar tells the truth. That’s the boy there, extending the apple to his twin sister.

kritiper's avatar

If I remember my catechism classes correctly, Adam and Eve were warned not to eat the fruit of that tree.

Dutchess_III's avatar

That’s what most of this thread has been about @kritiper. It’s always a good idea to glance over the previous answers before you respond.

flutherother's avatar

“The serpent told me” never works as an excuse.

dxs's avatar

I don’t think it was the actual act of eating the fruit that was sinful, but the accusations that were since they now knew how to sin. Because of Regarding original sin, I really don’t know and never understood this. I guess it’s because we’re humans and therefore related to Adam.

ETpro's avatar

@flutherother & @Dutchess_III I tried both. The police officer gave me a ticket anyway. Next time try, “I was born in sin. It’s all Eve’s fault.” But only if the cop’s a male.

zenvelo's avatar

Where did you get that it was morally wrong to eat of the forbidden fruit? No one said that. And yes, with no sense of Good and Evil, there was no morality before they ate the fruit.

But Good and Evil are different from right and wrong. It’s wrong to make a left turn in front of an oncoming car, but it’s not evil.

It was wrong for Adam and Eve to break the rule, but it was not Evil.

There are so many contradictions and holes in the Bible, you don’t have to choose one that really didn’t have an inconsistency.

dxs's avatar

Wow I apologize for that response. I botched it past the point of comprehension. I’m exhausted.

glacial's avatar

@dxs Still, kudos for trying to actually answer the question.

ETpro's avatar

@zenvelo I love the hand waving Christians use to make the ridiculous seem rational.

Moral (per Google)

adjective
1. concerned with the principles of right and wrong behavior and the goodness or badness of human character.
“the moral dimensions of medical intervention”
synonyms: virtuous, good, righteous, upright, upstanding, high-minded, principled, honorable, honest, just, noble, incorruptible, scrupulous, respectable, decent, clean-living, law-abiding

antonyms: dishonorable
concerned with or derived from the code of interpersonal behavior that is considered right or acceptable in a particular society.
“an individual’s ambitions may get out of step with the general moral code”
synonyms: ethical, social, having to do with right and wrong More
examining the nature of ethics and the foundations of good and bad character and conduct.
“moral philosophers”

2. holding or manifesting high principles for proper conduct.
“he prides himself on being a highly moral and ethical person”

noun
noun: moral; plural noun: morals
1. a lesson, esp. one concerning what is right or prudent, that can be derived from a story, a piece of information, or an experience.
“the moral of this story was that one must see the beauty in what one has”
synonyms: lesson, message, meaning, significance, signification, import, point, teaching More

2. a person’s standards of behavior or beliefs concerning what is and is not acceptable for them to do.
“the corruption of public morals”

I’ve learned it’s utterly pointless to debate about what the bible says with true believers, because it’s a constantly moving target. Its meaning is whatever they need it to be to make themselves right.

whitenoise's avatar

@zenvelo

Of course their was morality before Adam and Eve ate from the fruit.

Do you believe morality is ‘created’ and subject to God? In that case… how could you rely on anything God has passed down to us? If God isn’t bound by morality, then His words would mean nothing to us either. We couldn’t rely on His promises or his words, because He could and would change the rules of the game any time he chose to.

kess's avatar

@dxs That answer is correct
The sin is not in eating the fruit itself but it is in thinking that you could actually sin.

Adam knew exactly what was going to transpire, he waited for his wife to bring him the apple and ate.

Then he waited for the Lord of the garden to come and accuse him.
Taking note that the lord had trouble finding them.

Adam did not accuse his wife as it is popularly understood, but instead level his criticism at the Lord of the garden.

The fruit of the forbidden tree stood out in the garden, simply because it as the only thing in the garden worth eating.

Surely then the lord of the garden was actually the student of Adam, for though he made a prison for Adam, he actually tricked himself into setting them free.

The Moral of the story is :
1) Do not accuse Adam and by extension any man of anything you do not quite understand. And when you do understand fully you will know that he can be excused anyway.

2) Leave the tricksters up to their on devices, for eventually they Trap will trap their own feet.

zenvelo's avatar

@whitenoise What I was saying was that there was no knowledge of morality for Adam and Eve before they ate the fruit. They knew Right and Wrong, but not morality.

whitenoise's avatar

@zenvelo

I misunderstood your ”[..] with no sense of Good and Evil, there was no morality before they ate the fruit” to imply that morality didn’t exist before Eve ate from the fruit.

That brings us to the question whether there is something as an objective morality, or that it needs a person’s perspective.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@whitenoise How was there “morality” before A and E ate the fruit? Is there morality among other animals?

In answer to your second question, I believe that yes, morality needs a person’s (or a culture’s) perspective. For example, “morality” is different among different cultures. For example, we are aghast at the Muslim “morality” of hiding women’s faces and bodies so men won’t be tempted. To them it makes perfect sense. :/

whitenoise's avatar

Interesting @Dutchess_III

I have been interested in moral philosophy and thought and read a lot about it. I would cerainly think and hope that there is morality independent of man.

Animals show a lot of what we would call moral behavior. Like a sense of fairness.

I linked to a video bij Professor Frans de Waal on Ted.com, before. You should really watch it.

However… A rock is a rock, but still may look different from various perspectives, maybe it is that way with morality as well.

Dutchess_III's avatar

But animals (including us) also display a viscous unfairness at times. But other animals aren’t discussing this among themselves. They don’t philosophize about it. They don’t come up with rules regarding the behavior that they’re expected to follow.

I think it’s just behaviors. Humans just label behavior and give it a rating. I think the parable about Adam and Eve just underscores that difference between us and other animals. It refers to a time when we were no more ‘enlightened’ than animals and there was no such things as right or wrong. If Adam and Eve represent the dawning of human consciousness, then there WAS no right or wrong until then.

whitenoise's avatar

That’s where we differ in opinion, I fear. :-)

Dutchess_III's avatar

So what is your opinion? I mean, I said several things up there. Which part or parts do you disagree with?

Juels's avatar

Umm.. Yeah.. I’m just going to stick with evolution. As the human brain advanced, it created notions of morality. On the way to work, I pass a billboard protesting evolution. It always give me a chuckle to start the day.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Protesting evolution?! That’s funny. You from Kansas by any chance @Juels.

Next we’ll be seeing bill boards protesting the sun because it can cause skin cancer.

Juels's avatar

LOL. The billboard is in Joliet, IL. I’m in the Chicago suburbs.

Juels's avatar

Here is an example of the billboard. Not a great picture, but you’ll get the idea.

glacial's avatar

@Juels I have no words…

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