Adam & Eve


In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." This is the first thing the Bible tells us. Out of the formless darkness God made this beautiful world we live in. He made night and day; He separated sky and earth, land and sea. And when the world was formed, God created the living creatures on it. 

Finally God made man and woman. The first man was called Adam, a name meaning man or earth-man," for God had created man out of the earth. The woman was named Eve, meaning "living." 

Adam and Eve lived in a beautiful garden, where they had every thing they needed, without worrying or working. This garden was called Eden and they lived there in perfect happiness; and God talked directly to them, telling them everything they needed to know. This garden was also called Paradise. 

God gave Adam one firm command: there was one tree whose fruit he must not taste. This was the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Now Adam and Eve had never known anything bad, so they could not understand the difference between good things and evil things. God knew that if Adam and Eve learned that things could be bad, they and all men and women after them would be subject to fears, anger, hatred and sadness. Perfect happiness, such as theirs, would never again be known on earth. 

One day, when Eve was admiring the beautiful fruit on the forbidden tree, she met a serpent, a creature we call a snake. The serpent urged her to pick the luscious fruit, but Eve knew that God had said she and Adam could have everything but this. The serpent, however, persuaded her that the fruit would make them as wise as God Himself. That, he explained, was the only reason God did not want them to eat it. Tempted by the serpent's words and the beauty of the fruit, Eve picked it, and both she and Adam tasted it. 

Immediately they knew they had done wrong. Afraid and ashamed, they hid among the trees. God came into the garden that evening and, finding Adam and Eve hiding, made them tell Him what they had done. He sternly explained to them what they now faced. 

They must leave the beautiful garden forever and go out into the world, where they must work long and hard to make the land produce enough to keep them alive. They would have children, but both they and their children would always know much hardship and sadness. 

And God's words proved to be only too true. 

No sooner had Adam and Eve's first two sons grown up than a terrible thing happened. Their sons were named Cain and Abel; Cain, the elder, was a farmer and Abel was a shepherd. Adam and Eve had not forgotten God, but since they could no longer talk with Him, each of the family offered gifts to God of the things they produced, to show that they knew they were still His children. 

One day Cain and Abel fell into a bitter and violent quarrel, about which of their offerings was most pleasing to God. When it ended, Abel lay dead upon the ground, and the first deadful crime of man against man had been committed. 

God punished Cain severely, but He did not kill him. He protected Cain from death at the hand of any man, and Cain lived to found a family of his own.


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