Genesis 3: 1-7 & 14-8 -Answering Maharishi Dayananda Saraswati

Why did God create serpent? Did God lie?

Those sentences which are colored in orange are from Maharishi Dayananda Saraswati book Satyarth Prakash (The Light of Truth) and those which are colored in black are Jerry Thomas’s response.

"Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And He said unto the woman, Yea hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? And the woman said into the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: but the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, least ye die. And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not die: for God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then surely your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil. And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and, a tree be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat." "And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons. And the Lord God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days fo thy life: and I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel. Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee. And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground For thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field." (3: 1 – 7, 14 – 18.)

C. ~ Had the God of the Christians been an Omniscient Being, why would He have created this 'Subtle serpent or Satan? But as he did create him, He alone is responsible for all the evil deeds done by Satan for had He not created him evil (by nature) he would not have done evil deeds. The Christian God does not believe in the previous existence of the soul, why did He then create him wicked without any fault on his part? To tell the truth he was not a serpent but a man, otherwise how could he have been able to speak the human tongue?

Besides, it is he who tells lies and directs others to do the same, that should be called Satan but in this case he (Satan) spoke the truth and, therefore, did not mislead the woman (Eve) but told her what was true. On the other hand God told Adam and Eve a lie when he said that by eating of the tree of knowledge of good and evil he would surely die. Since those trees were such as gave life perpetual and the knowledge of good and evil to those who ate the fruits thereof, why did God forbid them their use, but as He did it He stands guilty of having told a lie and misled them, as the fruit of those trees bestowed life and knowledge upon men, not death and ignorance. Moreover why did God create those trees and forbid their use for men? If He created them for His own use, was He ignorant and mortal, then, that He needed them? But if He did for others there could possibly be no sin (for them) in eating their fruits.

Besides such trees as give life and knowledge to those who eat the fruit thereof, are nowhere to be seen nowadays. Has God destroyed even their seeds? If a man behaves like this he is called the same since he alone who cheats others and practices hypocrisy deserves to be called a cheat and a hypocrite. Again since God cursed them all, He stands guilty of having perpetrated injustice. It is God Who ought to have been cursed because He told a lie and He beguiled Adam and Eve. Could it have ever been possible for a woman to conceive and bear children without pain and ‘sorrow’?  

What a fine philosophy! Could anyone earn his living without working for it? Were there no thorns and thistles before?

Since it is right for man to live on herbs and vegetables according to the commandment of God, why is it not wrong to sanction flesh diet which has been done later on in the Bible? One of the two statements must be wrong. Since no charge of sinful conduct has been brought home to Adam, why should the Christians call all men by virtue of being the descendants of Adam sinners? Can such a book (as the Bible) and such a God command any respect in the eyes of wise men?

Answer: We will answer different parts of this question one by one. And those answers are not our speculations but the very words of the Holy Bible.

First, let us begin by answering who this serpent is.

Revelation 12:9- “So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he was cast to the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.” 

We read that this serpent was subtle than any beast of the field and he was in the Garden of Eden to tempt the first parents. We also saw that this serpent is none else than Satan himself. Let us now see, if God indeed had created this wise Satan evil or did he become one by his own actions.

Ezekiel 28:12-17 “Son of man, take up a lamentation for the king of Tyre, and say to him, 'Thus says the Lord GOD: "You were the seal of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty.  You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone was your covering: The sardius, topaz, and diamond, Beryl, onyx, and jasper, Sapphire, turquoise, and emerald with gold. The workmanship of your timbrels and pipes was prepared for you on the day you were created.  You were the anointed cherub who covers; I established you; you were on the holy mountain of God; you walked back and forth in the midst of fiery stones.  You were perfect in your ways from the day you were created, till iniquity was found in you. "By the abundance of your trading You became filled with violence within, And you sinned; Therefore I cast you as a profane thing Out of the mountain of God; And I destroyed you, O covering cherub, From the midst of the fiery stones.  Your heart was lifted up because of your beauty; you corrupted your wisdom for the sake of your splendor; I cast you to the ground, I laid you before kings that they might gaze at you.”

From these verses, it is clear that it was Satan himself who was in the Garden of Eden and he was not created as evil but as perfect, full of wisdom and beauty and by his own pride he became evil.

Coming to the second part of the question. Did God lie and Sat

an tell the truth? As per Hebrew word (Strong’s # 4191) the last of the passage is often translated more literally as "dying thou shall die.” (

In other words, what the LORD God has said has been literally been fulfilled, if one goes by the literal meaning.

However, disobedience to God and walking according to the prince of darkness, fulfilling their desires of heart and lust of eyes, which is what literally Adam and Eve did, also resulted in spiritual death.

Ephesians 2:1-3 – And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience, among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others.” 

Now did Satan speak truth? As the Holy Bible describes Satan, he was subtle and spoke accordingly.

When the Holy God spoke, He told them about the disastrous consequences that their disobedience could bring. In other words, LORD God loved the human beings and told them to avoid the disastrous consequences.

When Satan spoke, he minimized the disastrous consequences and spoke of those consequences as though they were beneficial. 

Let us start with the comparison.

When God spoke about the death, the literal Hebrew translation means “dying thou shall die,” which was absolutely and completely correct.

When Satan spoke, the literal Hebrew translation means “Not dying shall you die suddenly,” which was only partially correct but a subtle way of minimizing the consequence.

Another subtle thing that the Satan spoke was “For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” (Genesis 3:5).

This is another statement which seems to be true superficially. LORD God Himself seems to have said this at least on a superficial reading.

In Genesis 3:22 Then the LORD God said, "Behold, the man has become like one of Us, to know good and evil. And now, lest he put out his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever."

Was Satan telling the truth then? Yes, subtly but for the destruction of the human beings and not for their benefit. It is like telling a child, put your hand in the fire and you shall know what heat and fire is. That is true but what is not told is that the hand would be burned in the process and is meant for the destruction.

One of the common assumptions that Adam and Eve attained ‘knowledge’ in the positive sense is demonstrably false from the text itself. Before the disobedience itself, they had the knowledge about God, all living creatures in the land, sea, and water (Gen 1:28, Gen 2:19), about each other (Gen 2:23). They had the skills for management, stewardship (Gen 1:28), and also the skills to work (Gen 2:15). And for sure, they were explicitly told about the plan of God of giving them the dominion of the whole world as they multiply (Gen 1:28).

We will now look at the text to see the kind of knowledge that they acquired:

1) Glory is lost and knew the shame: Genesis 3:7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves coverings.

2) Love for God is replaced by the knowledge of fear – Gen 3:11 So he said, "I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself."

3) Unity is lost with the knowledge of disharmony- Genesis 3:12 Then the man said, "The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I ate."

4) They knew what deception is- Gen 3:13- The woman said, "The serpent deceived me, and I ate."

Further, we see that they knew about the curse and its negative effects on the entire universe.

In other words, the knowledge that they acquired is the knowledge about the consequences of evil- its depravity and destruction. It was like knowing the heat by burning the hand.

God in His foreknowledge knew about these consequences but Adam and Eve knew this knowledge by being a victim of those.  

That is why Eve told that the serpent deceived.

So when Maharishi says “in this case he (Satan) spoke the truth and, therefore, did not mislead the woman (Eve) but told her what was true,” neither Eve nor any human being with common sense will agree with it.

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