Issues with the Garden of Eden

Discussion in 'Off Topic Area' started by CKava, May 6, 2007.

  1. CKava

    CKava Just one more thing... Supporter

    So as not to derail the other thread any further here is a brand new sparkling thread specifically dedicated to discussing the Garden of Eden story.

    Now... to respond to the parts of my post that Capt Ann took issue with:

    According to the bible they ate from a tree that gave them knowledge of good and evil because a snake/serpent tricked silly old Eve. There seems to be an inherent contradiction in saying that this story does not condemn people thinking for themselves and then in the same breath saying we aren't allowed to use our intelligence to decide on what is right and wrong. Not to mention that if this was the tree that gave knowledge of good and evil prior to that event they couldn't have known that what they were doing was wrong or evil as to do something wrong you need to have the concept of wrong and right which according to the bible they didnt have until they ate from the tree.

    The point was that according to the story adam and eve were all set to live forever after they ate from the tree of life but it was precisely because of the serpent and eating the other fruit that they were denied this. Gods decision to banish them and their offspring (i.e. the human race) from the garden and not let them eat the fruit that would have allowed them to live forever eventually resulted in millions of humans being sent to hell (if the bible is to be believed).

    Emm... well he got pretty ****ed with the snake and if he wasn't angry then giving women incredible pain in child birth, kicking adam and eve both out of paradise and condemning the whole human race to suffer death rather than live forever was a bit odd.

    The overall point Im making which you have still failed to sufficiently address however is that if God is omnipotent and omniscent as I believe many Christians argue then he is responsible for causing mans downfall. He set up the garden (it even says he planted it!) and presumably he made the talking snake and the tree... why did he do that if he wanted man to not make the error? It doesn't make sense unless aside from being all powerful and all knowing he is also all incompetent.
  2. aikiMac

    aikiMac aikido + boxing = very good Moderator Supporter

    Wow, I wasn't aware that one's address determines whether one goes to Heaven or Hell. :eek: You wouldn't happen to have a list of good addresses and bad addresses, would you?

    Or is it the combination of address and diet? :confused: I'm a little bit confused.
  3. Strafio

    Strafio Trying again...

    You know what he meant, mister pedantic! :p
  4. CKava

    CKava Just one more thing... Supporter

    It's your bible... Im not really sure how the system is supposed to work but it seems that diet in the genesis story is drastically important. Heck depending on which fruit you eat you can become immortal or learn the knowledge of good and evil.

    To make my point clearer:

    - There was a tree with fruit in the paradise of eden that would have let adam and eve live forever.
    - Had they have been allowed to eat from it then they would never have died so Im not exactly sure how they could ever end up in heaven or hell. Where was eden anyway- was it in heaven or just some garden on the earth?
    - Being banished from the garden and being denied the fruit of life meant that they and all their offspring were not immortal so they would die... don't Christians believe something about going to heaven and hell after you die?
  5. Capt Ann

    Capt Ann Valued Member

    Gotta admit, I got a chuckle out of it. :D
  6. Smitfire

    Smitfire Cactus Schlong

    I've just started reading the bible and certain things about the genesis story (as described in the bible I've got at least) struck me as odd (especially if taken literally).

    At one point God comes into the garden and cannot find Adam and Eve.
    "Where are you?" he asks.
    Now...I find it odd that an omnipresent being can come "into" somewhere.
    Surely God is everywhere?
    If so he's already in the Garden? could God lose his awareness of Adam and Eve so they could hide in the first place?
    Given that he currently monitors the whereabouts and actions off something like 6 billion people (if you believe he is omniscient and all that) surely keeping tabs on the only two humans in existence should have been a doddle?

    Now obviously many christians take this stuff as allegory or metaphor but for the literalists surely this passage causes an impassable rift between two ideas?

    On the one hand god is everywhere and all knowing (or so we are told and many people believe) and yet if genesis is taken literally God can be outside somewhere and hidden from.
    They seem to be mutually incompatible ideas to me.
    What am I missing in the literalist Christians reading of that passage in the bible that allows them to believe both ideas at the same time?
  7. Strafio

    Strafio Trying again...

    Maybe he was being retohrical?
    Genesis is a cool book.
    The puzzlement gets better when Jacob beats God in a wrestling match! :D
  8. AZeitung

    AZeitung The power of Grayskull

    Was that God that he beat in a wrestling match? Everyone from pre-Christian Jews to St. Augustine to renaissance/enlightenment philosophers has his own interpretation of who that figure was, including God, and angel, a representation of his brother Esau, a dream, a represetnation of Christ. . . the list goes on.
    Last edited: May 10, 2007
  9. CanuckMA

    CanuckMA Valued Member

    Jews still interpret it as a messenger of G-d.
  10. Smitfire

    Smitfire Cactus Schlong

    "Maybe he was being retohrical?"

    Well yeah...maybe he was. But that's not taking it literally is it? That takes interpretation.
    And that doesn't really solve the "god being out of the garden" conundrum.
  11. Strafio

    Strafio Trying again...

    My Bible says it was God himself.
    Maybe limited his powers to make it more interesting?
    As I understand it, it was the result of this match (Jacob pinned the guy down until he blessed him) that got Jacob renamed to Israel and made his offspring, the Israelites, God's chosen people.
  12. CKava

    CKava Just one more thing... Supporter

    Well that makes perfect sense... also shows that even in biblical times grappling was an essential skill.
  13. Smitfire

    Smitfire Cactus Schlong

    Heh...I think you'll find he's been renamed once more...these days he goes by the name of Rickson. :cool:

    For the win.
  14. CanuckMA

    CanuckMA Valued Member

    Bad translation.

    Gen 32:25 - And Jacob was left alone; and there wrestled a man with him until the breaking of the day.

    The Hebrew uses the word 'ish', wich means man.

    It is as the result of this struggle that Jacob is renamed Israel. The Covenant to be G-d's chosen people was made with Abraham.
  15. CKava

    CKava Just one more thing... Supporter

    Canuck the issue as ever is not so simple... a quick scally on wikipedia's entry on Jacob would highlight the fact that the terminology varies with it being a man in Genesis 32:24 and an angel in Hosea 12:4. On top of this there seems to have been considerable debate over why the being would not identify himself and what this suggests. The choice of the name he took after this event 'one who has struggled with God' also makes the issue less than clear. So its not a simple matter of it clearly being a man and even if it were God decided to make a guys descendants his chosen people because he won a wrestling match? Sounds like God would like the UFC.
  16. Strafio

    Strafio Trying again...

    That line describes him as a man, but later on in the paragraph, when the man finally agrees to bless him:
    28 "Your name will no longer be Jacob," the man told him. "From now on your will be called Israel, because you have fought with God and with men and have won."
    30 Jacob... said "I have seen God face to face, yet my life has been spared."...

    Aye. And God learnt the hard way that a leg lock is useless if the imbecile would rather have it wrenched out of it's socket than to submit! He should've practiced his striking for the knockout blow! I guess he was just being a good sport! ;)
  17. AZeitung

    AZeitung The power of Grayskull
  18. Hiroji

    Hiroji laugh often, love much

    I the Garden of Eden who cut the grass and tended the shrubs?

    Adam must have been too shagged out after all that landscape gardening to even contemplate sex. He must have been a total animal...a sexual predator! :D
  19. CanuckMA

    CanuckMA Valued Member

    The being is described as a man, and there is a physical struggle. This exclude G-d directly. Jewish interpretation is a messenger of G-d. Men as messengers have appeared before, the 3 men that come to Abraham's tent.

    CKava, remember that Genesis is Torah and Hosea is interpretation.
  20. CKava

    CKava Just one more thing... Supporter

    Does the Jewish scholars offer any particular reason as to why God decided to make Jacobs descendents his chosen people based on a wrestling match?

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