And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.
It’s difficult for us to imagine the perfection that existed in the Garden of Eden, the kind of life Adam and Eve enjoyed there, the unhindered fellowship with God, the lack of sin and pain and hardship that are so much a part of our lives. And the contrast between that paradise and the sin-cursed Earth we live in shows us just how important it is to stick closely to God’s truth. When we trust what others say about what God says more than simply trusting what He’s said, we can end up doing something we’ll regret forever.
Satan’s lie to Eve, “Ye shall not surely die,” does several things. First of all, it makes God a liar. It undoes what He has already said in His command to Adam and Eve about what they were not supposed to do and the consequences for doing that. Satan makes it seem like it’s not a sure possibility, that there might be some wiggle room there. But what God says will happen is what will happen. Adam and Eve find that out all too late. Satan’s lie also removes the consequences of sin. One of the devil’s favorite tactics is to make us think nothing bad will happen to us if we disobey God. He wants it to seem like it’s not that big of a deal, because when we take it so lightly instead of viewing it as a serious offense against a holy God, it’s easier to do a lot of things we aren’t supposed to do.
This lie also makes it seem like God doesn’t keep His promises. To convince Eve that God wouldn’t do what He said makes Him seem untrustworthy and makes Him seem unfaithful and leaves room for doubting God and His authority. And then Satan even suggests an alternative reason, implying that God is holding something back from Adam and Eve, not doing what is best for them. Satan always wants us to think we are missing out on something. If he can convince us that God is not being fair, he can get us to take matters into our own hands, causing us to step outside of God’s will so we can get what we think we are owed.
There are many dangers in trusting anything else more than the pure and holy truth of God’s Word that He has graciously given to us. He’s given it to us for our own good, not to hold us back. He’s given us His commandments so we can live the best kind of life, not to place unreasonable limitations on us. So let us make a commitment to obeying God and refuse to believe those lies that can easily lead us astray.