On the one hand, the law makes people’s lives bearable, humane. On the other hand, the law makes all people sinners and transgressors. It is the law that reveals to the person that there is a force that is stronger than his mind and will, constantly pushing him to transgress the law. A person understands that to live by the law is good. However, to always fulfill the law contrary to desire and want – does not work out. Hence the person experiences pain, shame, and humiliation. He would like to be good, kind, truthful, but great strength and battle with oneself is necessary. And so the question is: with whom does man battle? Against whom does man use great force, and yet still turns out to be defeated?
“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 eateth thereof thou shalt surely die.'” (Genesis 2:16-17)
“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 unto the serpent, ‘We may eat of the fruits of the trees of the garden, but of the fruits 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, lest ye die.’” And the serpent said unto the woman, ‘Ye shall not surely die. For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.’” (Genesis 3:1-5)
“And out of the ground made the Lord God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food. The tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil.” (Genesis 2:9)
These two trees are the beginning of mankind’s history, as well as its end! Precisely in them lie the two testaments: the Old, unable to give life, for the letter puts to death; and the New, which is life through the acceptance and faith in Jesus Christ, Who is Life itself. Whatever it would be that people would do, whichever paths they would walk, everything – entirely everything, – lies in these two trees. Either people eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil and live by it, or they eat and live by the tree of life! One may blame God, as many do, that He placed the tree of knowledge of good and evil in the midst of the garden; as everything that people have today: great knowledge, and the desire to know and explore, – they are bound to the tree of knowledge! People say: had God not placed this tree in the garden, then the evil between us today would never have existed and everyone would be happy! But these words mean nothing at all, as history already exists, it flows and will continue to flow until its end- predestined by God. For this reason, today it is more important for a person to seek out from which tree he should nourish, for the tree of knowledge brings death, but the tree of life – Life. It is even a necessity for one to learn the mystery of these two trees, because in them lies all of life itself, mankind’s entire history on this earth!
Two Trees – Two Opposites…
Why did God plant two trees, carrying two opposite outcomes for man? This predicament reveals that God endowed man with free will, free and personal desires, feelings, thoughts and reasoning of mind, so that man could freely accept and reject, to obey and to disobey. Otherwise, he would not have been created in the image of God, but would instead be equal to the beasts of the land, living through an instilled instinct, without free will, consciousness, a reasoning mind, unable to accept or reject. It is very simple; if night did not exist, then man could not know what day is, would not know the value of night, nor day. Just so, if hatred never existed, then man would not understand, know, nor be able to value love. If untruth did not exist, then man would not know nor value the truth, and so on. Only because these opposites exist is precisely what enables and allows man to understand, reason, make decisions, and to value.
So two trees, two opposites mutually excluding one another, and this is how God determined it to be. For when man ate of the tree of knowledge, God excluded his opportunity to also eat from the tree of life. And to this day, having eaten from the tree of knowledge, man cannot eat of the tree of life; that is, an unbeliever, living of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, cannot simultaneously live by Jesus Christ, which is by the tree of life. Just so, a believer, living under the letter of the law, which constantly condemns and kills him, is not able to simultaneously live in Jesus Christ by the spirit, that is to say, the tree of life! Placing man in this garden among these two trees, God commanded, warned man not to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil and said that it would bring him death. Satan, opposing, instilled man with an understanding that God had not said the truth, that they would not die, but rather, they would become like gods, knowing good and evil. These words began to affect man, to draw him in- for he would then know! He would be like God! Seduced and taken by Satan’s deceit, man leaned more toward the tree of knowledge and ate its fruit.
From here began the history of the earthly man with his able mind, and as the beginning of this history began, with temptation, seduction, and infatuation – so to this day, life of all mankind is grounded precisely on this: on seduction, infatuation, and knowledge, and there is nothing new, nor can be, because man cannot reach past the scope/bounds of the tree of knowledge! Nothing new, anything beyond the tree of knowledge, was he able to come up with, and will not be able to- this is already evident from the course of mankind’s history itself!
Not heeding God and not eating of the tree of life, man remained without Godly life within him, remained earthly, a carnal human with a dependence on his own mind, his own strengths and abilities. And as it was that man leaned towards knowledge, so God, on this groundwork, gave him the law; instructing: what is well and what is bad; what is good and what is evil; what is pleasing to God and what is not; and how to worship God. And all that, which, mankind has today, comes only from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. All the great and novice writers had all their ideas and creativity sprout from one: what is good and what is bad. Philosophers, no matter how much they sought after wisdom and truth, always came from one thing: what is good and what is evil, what is better and what is worse. Scholars, and any other field of work in the life of mankind, all have only one source- good and evil, nothing else, there is no surpassing these bounds! This is the limit of man’s knowledge without the life of God in him! Any religion, whatever form or direction it would have, always comes from one: what is good and what is bad, how to better worship God. To this day, every religion, including Christianity, nourishes from the tree of knowledge of good and evil, what excludes its nourishment from the tree of life, consequently, brings death!
The Tree of Knowledge brought Death…
Devil – the father of lies, hatred, treachery – with his deceit, infatuation, playing with the feelings of people, rousing desires/passions, and blinding all reason, led mankind to the point that it began to regard light, as darkness, and good, as evil. People became so captivated with knowledge that they fell under the influence of Satan to the point that they were no longer able to understand good, but rather understand evil and its fruits as goodness; for example: violence, deception, hypocrisy, revenge, murder (wars). They began to divide evil itself into categories of good and evil. The tree of knowledge of good and evil, as God had said to Adam, did certainly bring mankind to death. This is very obvious to everyone, even to unbelievers, for they testify, “There is no life, what is such a thing? Everyone has sufficiency, yet no one has any joy, no peace, everyone is spiteful, destroy each other; they hate and kill.” Who challenges this, that today mankind does not consist of this?! The present state of mankind is a result from Adam eating of the tree of knowledge of good and evil!
So, God provided man with freedom, gave him the potential to walk and make his own paths, and mankind proved to itself, that without God it is not feasible(possible) for man to build a happy and righteous life, that there is a force higher than that of man, which led all of mankind to death! To the last unfit, everyone died in sin and evil – so testifies the word of God! God is love! Loving man, God showed mercy unto him, not leaving him in death but bought him back from out of death, justified him, and anew, led him to the tree of life! “For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father and was manifested unto us…” (1st John 1:2) – so testifies the word of God. “In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by Him, and without Him was not anything made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men,” (John 1:1-4). Jesus Christ- the Son of God stood-in for man and died in his stead. Thereby, through faith, God gave man the opportunity to return to the beginning once more- and eat from tree of life!
From the phenomenon (coming) of Jesus Christ into the world everything starts anew, a new history begins! Now begins the life of the Second man! Man could now return to God through faith, eat of the tree of life, and thereby accept Godly life into himself, that is, to do what Adam had not in the garden. In this manner God begets a man of His Seed, which is Christ! Being born of God, which means: redemption, justification from all evil and sin, and freedom from the dominion(rule) of Satan, – man again stands before the tree of life and begins to eat and nourish from it!
Eating from the tree of life, it is not possible to simultaneously eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil! The tree of life – Christ, the true food and drink of the New Creation born of God. The tree of knowledge of good and evil is expressed today through believers (by the letter of the law), as serving God by the flesh, by their own deeds and strength!
The Tree of Life- Nourishing and leading by Christ…
The fact of birth alone completely voids any form or law, just as a newborn infant, whom it is impossible to regulate or assign rules! An infant is in need of milk, care, so that he would be nursed and have the conditions for his healthy development. Therefore the fact of birth from God, as well as infancy and growth, provided/foreseen in the New Testament, which excludes any form of religious worshiping of God, i.e. set rules, regulations, laws, but affirms the love of He Who begat us, says: naturally the infant will begin to answer with love, obedience, and complete trust. The love of parents to their children and the return of that love cannot be put into the frame of any type of law, love does not have appointed regulations and borders in its manifestation- it is boundless! Nothing can be demanded of an infant- that is clear, one can only love and nurse him! Could there possibly be true love when it is demanded of out of fear of punishment: “love me, and if not so – I will punish thee”?! Such are the turn of events: from fear of punishment, begins to search for an escape and will surely come to a materialistic pleasing of God: What does He like?! – I will do this, and He will not punish me! There is no longer any love in this, but rather hatred, pleasing, and hypocrisy! So it is written: the law produces wrath: “Because of the law worketh wrath: for where no law is, there is no transgression,” (Romans 4:15).
The love of God to man, and mutually from man- this defines the relationship of one to another in the New Testament! God does not require anything of man in the New Testament if it does not already pour from his heart out of sincere love to God. Trying to love through efforts – is impossible! This will just result in hypocrisy, but to love from personally experiencing this love, is true love! God loved us first. Experiencing God’s love to one’s self, through the means of Him dwelling in one’s heart, will undoubtedly open man’s love to God – this is the New Testament!
God is love, and through His love He dwells in man! From this love man opens up to God more and more, increasingly trusts and entrusts himself to God until there is complete unity. In this way, comes about the full merging into one whole and everything becomes Godly! God has no need at all for man’s deeds, no matter how good they be. God only needs man himself, as a vessel, as a temple, in whom he wants to live and manifest Himself through man’s members, as it is said, “Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God” (Romans 6:13).
God needs man himself, whom he wants to lead by the Holy Spirit, and only such are the children of God: “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God,” (Romans 8:14). God desires that man present himself to Him, give himself in sacrifice to God, and He will dwell in him, live in him, and walk in him: “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God,” (Romans 12: 1, 2), “For ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, ‘I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people,” – (2nd Corinthians 6: 16). This is the tree of life!