Adam and Eve were the first human couple that the Almighty God created. They were very special to God since he had created them after His own image. The story of Adam and Eve often provides the epitome for describing the fall of man from a state of utter obedience to God’s ordinances to state of continual defiance to the creator. Both believers and atheists believe that Adam and Eve formed the first parents of the whole human race. Christians, Jewish, and Muslims acknowledge the preexistence of Adam and Eve as the first human to be created by God. Genesis, the first book in the bible, accounts for the existence of Adam and Eve. The two lived in the Garden of Eden and were given a condition by God to eat all the fruits of every tree except the fruits from the tree in the middle of the Garden. The tree was regarded as the tree of life which would bring the knowledge of good and evil. However, they disobeyed the command of God and were eventually thrown from the Garden. This paper seeks to explore how the disobedience of Adam and Eve explains the fallen nature of humanity. It shall also examine the significance of the fall to the believers as well as to the non-believers. In addition, this paper shall closely examine the interpretation of the fall of man in regard to the moral and body imperfections of humanity. Finally, the paper shall conclude by outlining the atheist perceptions of the shame that befell Adam and Eve as well as the explanation of mortality and imperfection of all people.
Christians, Muslims, atheists, and Jewish each have different explanations to the story of the first couple; Adam and Eve with diverse meanings of the same. For instance, Christians believe in the literal meaning of the scriptures. Therefore, they believe that man was created by God. The atheists, on the other hand, hold the belief that human evolved through natural selection to become who they are today. Nevertheless, it is important to focus on the significance of the fall of man to all these categories. Undoubtedly, everyone acknowledges that the current wiles that face humanity can be traced back to the errors of the ancestors; Adam and Eve for that matter. However, the difference only emerges at the point of the gravity of the consequences of that fall.
The Story of Adam and Eve: Describing the Fallen Nature of Human Existence
God created Adam and Eve with a sole purpose of reflecting His glory through obedience to His ordinances. However, Adam and Eve decided to defy God’s commands as it is commonly done by many people today. The subject of whether the story of Adam and Eve is a myth or reality is a controversial matter among many religious affiliations. If indeed that the story is a myth, then Adam and Eve could not have borne children. This is mainly because, people cannot descend from myths. Therefore, the story clearly shows how humanity fell into Satan’s trap. Rather than reflecting God’s as intended, they chose to obey the voice of Satan. This is often the case with people all over the world. Every human being has an inherent inclination to do evil instead of upholding righteousness as earlier intended by God. Every time when people act dishonestly, kill, or steal, they tend to follow the very example of Adam and Eve.
According to the Christian teachings, the sin that was committed by Adam and Eve drew all human into a fallen state. And this explains why men will naturally act wickedly. The fall of Adam has been equated to expulsion from the Garden of Eden, a land of perfection, into a world of imperfect human life which is marred with many ills. The fall may also mean a disruption of the harmony that existed between God and man and among men. According to the writings of Paul in the New Testament, the fall of Adam is closely link to the origin of sin. Paul explains that the sin that was committed by Adam and Eve when they disobeyed God falls upon every human being. In other words, every the newborn baby is guilty of sin in the eyes of God. However, this notion is not held by all believers. In Christian view, there is more to eating the fruit than meets the eye. The bible is very clear about being straightforward regarding sin. This implies that God intends to protect us against experimenting or testing sin. The original plan of God was to shield Adam and Eve from the knowledge of evil by engaging in it.
The consequences of the fall of Adam and Eve had far –reaching impact on the human race that descended from them. From the accounts of the book of Genesis, God did not only pronounce a curse on the serpent, but the entire earth was cursed as a result of the fall. For instance, God told Eve that she give birth in pain. The result of this utterance affects all women. Every woman has to undergo intense labor prior to giving birth. In other words, were it not for their disobedience, Eve could have given birth with no labor pain and hence all the women would have been saved from the birth pangs. Adam was told that he would have to work hard so as to get food. Apparently, this is what has befallen all human. Without working hard, one cannot be guaranteed a better life.
A closer examination of the story of Adam and Eve shows that the consequences of their disobedience were so grievous that than fits a punishment. There was a drastic change in the entire human race. Sin entered the world which created a totally different condition of life. As a result of their disobedience, the entire human race has been borne into a fallen world where Satan still has the mandate to continue with his deceptions by enticing men to sin so as to cause more trouble for them. This explains why the world is full of wars, infidelity, rapes, violence, robberies, and other wicked acts.
The fall of Adam also marked the beginning of sin and hence death. After losing the harmonious relationship with God, Adam`s lifespan was shortened and death was pronounced. This implies that the entire human race inherited an imperfect body that in the end shall be subjected to destruction by death. I strongly believe that everyone could have done exactly what Adam and Eve did in that particular situation. This shows that existence of human is pegged on various conditions. In other words, every person has an inherent tendency to do evil and thus fall short of the intended glory of God.
Muslims denounce the argument that Adam`s rebellion towards God culminated to the fallen nature man. They strongly assert that each individual should be responsible for their won conduct. That is, if a person decides to deviate from God’s command and does evil, he or she must be ready to suffer for his or her sins and vice versa. As a matter of fact, it is obvious that an amputated man shall give birth to an amputated son. In addition, the justice does not provide that a son should suffer for the sins of the father.
Prior to eating the forbidden fruit, Adam and Eve could freely walk in the Garden naked and they were never ashamed. This depicts the extent of innocence that occupied them and sinless nature that God had imparted on them. By eating the forbidden fruit they committed the first sin against God. After their disobedience, the biblical descriptions highlights that their eyes were opened and for the first time in their lives, they realized that they were naked. Therefore, they went ahead to look for a covering for their nakedness. At this point, one could ask why suddenly they sought for a covering while all along they were running in the field naked and did not bother about their nakedness. The answer to this question differs depending on religious affiliation. The atheists would argue that they were driven by shame, which came as a result of imperfection and the mortal nature of man. To Christians, the answer would be that they were filled with shame, condemnation, and guilt of their disobedience to God’s command. In other words, they lost their purity and innocence before God and hence they needed to hide from God.
All human are not perfect granted that we are mortal and are subjected to different forms of trials and temptations that often lead us to sin. Our personalities and characters are marred with flaws and imperfections. This is derived from the sinful nature that was brought into the world at birth. Therefore, in the eyes of God, we are all sinners and we can only be saved by grace through Jesus Christ. No one can claim righteousness before God. The same judgment that faced Adam and Eve shall befall us except if we receive redemption through Jesus Christ.