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knowledge of good

Munching On The Knowledge Of Good

 You Are What  You Eat

God says,

And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.”

Genesis 2:16,17

Two trees in the garden

There were two trees in the center of the Garden of Eden.  One tree was characterized by life (i.e. the tree of life) and one was characterized by death (i.e. the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.)  It seems that, according to the scriptures, that the knowledge of good can be just a deadly as the knowledge of evil.  Isn’t it interesting that God forbade mankind to partake of both?

How could the knowledge of something which is good cause death?  Moreover, why did God wish to keep such knowledge from us?  I believe that the answers to these questions may show us some of the fundamental reasons why some believers struggle in their Christian walks.

The knowledge of good

The knowledge of good is essentially the way that seems right to us.  We determine what is good based upon our knowledge and understanding.  We do what we think is good.  One might ask, “why is that bad?”

The answer is that, when we do what is right (or good) in our own eyes, we do so without all the necessary information, foreknowledge, and purity of motive to make correct choices.  God, on the other hand, who has complete and perfect knowledge, knows the end from the beginning and His Holy Spirit can give us the correct choice through revelation every time.

The terrible effects of the knowledge of good

If one looks at church history we see the “knowledge of good” in action; oftentimes with terrible results.  Many died during the inquisitions because people thought that it was better to kill someone’s body in this life so that their soul might be saved in the next.  Catholicism was the dominant religion at the time and those who left the “faith” were literally tortured by members of the church to try to make them recant their blasphemous beliefs.

What were these heretical beliefs? These heretics believed such evil things like salvation by faith and baptism by immersion.  Thinking that they were “doing good”, Catholics did the most horrible things imaginable to people who simply wanted to serve God.

God never meant for us to live by the knowledge of good

Why does the acting according to the knowledge of good oftentimes turn out so badly?  Here is a truth and the answer,

“God never meant for us to live by the knowledge of good and evil but rather we were created to live by revelation.

Anything we wanted to know, any decision that needed to be made, was to be revealed to us.  We were simply to ask God and, by faith, receive and do what He said.  In the beginning, there was such a “oneness” with His Spirit that this process was seamless and done without much thought.  You could not tell where God began and Adam left off…they were one.  Seeing Adam, you saw God, because God made Adam in His image and likeness.  Adam was not God any more than Jesus was God.  The Almighty indwelt the first Adam just like He indwelt the last Adam.  It is only through being filled by God’s Holy Spirit that we say “I and the Father are one”.

Shattered by the knowledge of good and evil

However, when that “oneness” was broken, Adam and his descendants no longer could access our Father’s infinite wisdom and holy character.  Since we chose the knowledge of good and evil, we were left without the revelation of God.  We began to do what was right in our own eyes and chaos ensued.  As man decided for Himself what was good and what was evil, the pre-flood world descended into an ever-increasing cycle of violence and misery.

This continued for over 1500 years until God could no longer bear what His creation had become, repented that He had created it, and decided to destroy it.  Man, through the knowledge of good and well as evil, had become totally corrupt.  God was so angry that he wiped that first civilization off the face of the earth until nothing of it remains today.

The knowledge of good is seductive

The forbidden fruit is seductive because it promises results that we can control and manipulate.  This is the essence of Science.  Through the scientific method, we understand our world through our natural minds.  Furthermore, through that understanding, we manipulate our world as we see fit.  Science is, at its core, the knowledge of good and evil.  It is knowledge gained by our natural minds and by revelation, therefore we use it for good and evil.

When we decide for ourselves what is good and what is evil, we become our own source of revelation and usurp the position of God in our lives.  This is the sin of Lucifer, for he desired to be like the Most High.  When we follow Lucifer, we suffer his fate in the lake of fire.

The way of revelation

Thankfully, once we accept Jesus Christ, the way back to God is open to us.  We have communion with Him when He forgives.  God washes away the sin that separated us so we can hear His voice again.  Salvation through Jesus is all about restoration to our pre-fallen, sinless state.  As we progress from glory to glory we begin to regain His image and likeness. As we leave our own ways and yield to His ways, we live once again, by revelation.

In conclusion, the way of revelation is the path of trusting His voice more than we trust our five senses.  It is submitting to His will rather than doing what seems good and reasonable to us.  Walking in the Spirit through revelation is the only way that Christ’s yoke is easy.  By living through revelation, we cease from our own works and allow Christ to be formed in us and live through us.

Back To The Garden by Crowder