Eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil was inspired by questioning God’s Word. Satan aroused doubt in our first parents about the goodness and love of God. If God won’t let you have “everything” you want, He must not truly 19 the doorlove you seems to be the approach that Satan took as he targeted the faith of Adam and Eve. “Look,” Satan says, “it looks good, it feels good, it tastes good, and it will satisfy that gnawing curiosity of wandering what that forbidden fruit is all about.” It was that curiosity that killed the cat, and drove the first two human beings to experiment with the forbidden. Isn’t that always the case? But the root of that experimentation seems to be the desire to find out for myself. That seems to be why they ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. It’s the knowledge tree.

Why is that forbidden? How do I know it’s not good? The curiosity is killing me! I need to “know.” Proverbs 9:17 says, “Stolen waters are sweet, and bread eaten in secret is pleasant.” In the Canterbury Tales, Chaucer wrote, “Forbid us something, and that’s the thing we desire.” In the ancient Annals of Tacitus, we read, “The illicit has an added charm.” In Pudd’nhead Wilson, Mark Twain said it well, “Adam was but human—this explains it all. He did not want the apple for the apple’s sake; he wanted it only because it was forbidden. The mistake was in not forbidding the serpent; then he would have eaten the serpent.” It is said that Phineas T. Barnum, the famed circus magnate, hung a large sign over one of the exits of his museum, which read, “This way to the egress.” Many people in the crowds, eager to see what an egress looked like, passed through the door and found themselves out on the street.

“Hey,” as Si always says, don’t think we’d have done anything differently. None of us have trusted God completely. Shakespeare said it well in Romeo and Juliet (III, 2, 87), “There’s no trust, no faith, no honesty in men; all perjured, all forsworn, all naught, all dissemblers.” We’ve all been drawn by our quest for the knowledge of good and evil and the desire to find out for ourselves. We are all lured by the sign and we want to find out for ourselves. And we all have found ourselves out in the street. We’ve all taken wrong doors. All we like sheep have gone astray. Thank God for Jesus! He says, “…Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep…I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture” (John 10:7-9).