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by Dr. John Thomas
THE NATURE OF THE TRANSGRESSION.
"The eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked".
The effect produced upon the woman by the eating of the forbidden fruit, was the excitation of the propensities.
By the transgression of the law of God, she had placed herself in a state of sin; in which she had acquired that maturity of feeling which is known to exist when females attain to womanhood.
The Serpent's part had been performed in her deception; and sorely was she deceived.
Expecting to be equal to the gods, the hitherto latent passions of her animal nature only were set free; and though she now knew what evil sensations and impulses were, as they had done before her, she had failed in attaining to the pride of her life -- an equality with them as she had seen them in their power and glory.
In this state of animal excitation, she presented herself before the man, with the fruit so "pleasant to the eyes".
Standing now in his presence, she became the tempter, soliciting him to sin.
She became to him an "evil woman flattering with her tongue"; "whose lips dropped as a honeycomb, and her mouth was smoother than oil".
She found him "a young man void of understanding" like herself.
We can imagine how "she caught him, and kissed him; and with an impudent face, and her much fair speech, she caused him to yield".
He accepted the fatal fruit, "and ate with her," consenting to her enticement, "not knowing that it was for his life": though God had said, transgression should surely be punished with death.
As yet inexperienced in the certainty of the literal execution of the divine law, and depending upon the remedial efficacy of the Tree of Lives, he did not believe that he should surely die.
He saw everything delightful around him, and his beautiful companion with the tempting fruit; and yet he was told that his eyes were shut!
What wonderful things might he not see if his eyes were opened.
And to be "as the gods," too, "knowing good and evil," was not this a wisdom much to be desired?
The fair deceiver had, at length, succeeded in kindling in the man the same lusts that had taken possession of herself.
His flesh, his eyes, and his pride of life, were all inflamed; and he followed her in her evil way "as a fool to the correction of the stocks".
They had both fallen into unbelief.
They did not believe God would do what He had promised.
This was a fatal mistake.
They afterwards found by experience, that in their sin they had charged God falsely; and that what He promises, He will certainly perform to the letter of His word.
Thus, unbelief prepared them for disobedience; and disobedience separated them from God.