“and Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and became a transgressor.” 1 Timothy 2:14 ESV
God daily walked with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. He talked with them face to face. They had a personal relationship with Him. They had no sin nature. They were made perfect and still, they sinned.
Satan tempted Eve into sin by getting her to question God’s command to not eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Why did it seem so easy for her to question God and become ensnared by Satan’s lies?
Genesis 3:3 has the answer.
“And the woman said not the serpent, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, but God said, ‘You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.‘” Genesis 3:2-3 ESV (my emphasis)
Eve misquoted God. In Genesis 2:17, God said “but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” God said nothing about touching the tree–only about eating from it.
Eve had not been created when God gave that command to Adam and so, as far as we can tell, she got that information secondhand from her husband.
There is a great lesson in this for us.
Deception now is so great. False teachers abound. Misquoted scriptures flood social media and many peoples knowledge of God depends on what they learn from others. It does not matter what people say with their opinions and beliefs. Christian books are not the answer. Christian blogs are not the answer. Even a trusted believer with a strong relationship with God to mentor you is not the answer.
You must get to know God for yourself.
Secondhand knowledge will lead you into deception.
We are fortunate to have the scriptures before us and thousands of years of history showing us what God has done in His plan to redeem humanity. The apostles, the early church, and those Old Testament men and women of faith did not have what we have.
God’s actual living, Holy Spirit inspired Word is within our reach every moment of the day. Take time to study it in detail. Take time to pray and allow the Holy Spirit to teach you and help you understand it (John 14:26).
Do not rely on secondhand knowledge. Doing so will make you vulnerable to deception and lead you into sin and the price will be higher than you want to pay.