Dying You Shall Die

God gave Adam and Eve all the trees of the garden to eat from except for one. He told them they must not eat from one particular tree:

“16 And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, “You may surely 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 surely die.”” (Gen. 2:16–17 ESV)

Of course, they did eat from the forbidden tree, but they did not die the day they ate from it. What’s going on here? Why didn’t they die on the day they ate? Did God say one thing and mean another? If God meant what He said, why did He let them off the hook? Wasn’t God’s penalty for eating from this tree capital punishment? 

There are three common interpretations that attempt to reconcile what God said would happen with what actually transpired. 

  1. Adam and Eve died immediately in the sense that they lost their immortality.
  2. Adam and Eve began the process of aging and dying.
  3. Adam and Eve died spiritually. 

I propose that none of these three explanations are correct and that God did indeed mean that He would enact judgement in the form of death on the very day they ate.

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Posted by Eddie Lawrence in Genesis, Grace, Judgement