The First Deception in History
Two lies are stated in Gen. 3.4-5, both of them subtle. The first is explicit but technical so as to deceive: “you shall not surely die” (KJV).
While the pair (Adam and Eve), after eating did not die physically at once, that very day they died to God.
1. They needed a remedy since they were now alienated from God (by hiding) and from themselves (tried to cover their nakedness). After this sin they were clothed with animal skins which involved an innocent victim (the substitute).
2. Jesus saw folks as dead before they trusted Him: Very truly I tell you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be judged but has crossed over from death to life (Jn. 5.24). Paul tells the Christians in Eph. 2.1–“As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins.” Here the apostle says to the living before they believed, they were in some sense “dead”, so a death occurred at the fall.
The Second Deception
The focus of this post is another lie, though even more subtle, implied in vs. 5: “for God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
Refutation and Judgment
The hint is ‘that God is holding out on them’ with the idea that God is not sharing, or put another way, that God is not all good. God’s ultimate goodness is in question. It’s an accusation against God. This was the first accusation and all others follow. The devil is not merely “the accuser of the brethren” (Rev. 12.10) but of God as well, and is called to the judgment scene which follows. This is the setting of Gen. 3.15 which gives hope to humanity of The Redeemer: He will crush your head, but you will pierce His heel.