Friday, February 8, 2008

Knowing good and evil

When Adam and Eve ate the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, just what did that mean? At face value, it seems to simply say that Man became a moral being, capable of knowing right from wrong, and capable of freely choosing either. We cannot be amoral like the animals; we can only be moral or immoral.

No less than John Paul II has suggested a deeper meaning as well. Namely, that the original sin of Man involved deciding what is good and what is evil, in direct rebellion of God's authority. Note the serpent's words: "You will be like God, knowing good and evil". Rather than agree with God's judgment of sin, we want to make up our own rules.

Sound familiar? Of course it does - we hear this all the time, even perhaps from our pulpits. "Each person must find his or her own truth" or: "Only you can decide what is right and wrong for you" or: "Sin is whatever you feel it to be" If this relativism is questioned, the inevitable out-of-context comeback is "Judge not, lest ye be judged."

Whether you call it a serpent's hiss, or "Values clarification", it's still a deception. Repentance starts with agreeing with God, and recognizing that what He says is good is good, and what He says is evil is evil.

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