As Christians we often think the world does not know about God and this is the reason they go about their merry way being captivated by sin. This may be partly true as they do not understand all the details about the Bible and what God wants from them, however, every human has inherited the ability to know right from wrong.
Originally, Adam and Eve were not concerned about sin and were not controlled by their Maker but were given free will to make their own decisions. After they fell from the Garden of Eden and told they would surely die, they did not think purely as they did before. Suddenly, they could recognize error and could feel shame. The world was turned upside down that day and the human heart went from being innocent to being guilty.
They are responsible for opening the door to all sin, and within this new understanding of evil, the awareness of good and evil became included within the spectrum of all human existence. Even though dying became one of the curses within the natural realm, we know when God said, “You shall surely die” in chapter two, He was not referring to their immediate physical death because they were not instantly killed. The dying the Lord was talking about was spiritual and reminds us there are always terrible consequences to disobeying our Maker.
Remember the passage in Romans 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” These wages can include natural death but are usually referred to as eternal separation from God.
It’s true that Satan was tempting and lying to Eve in Genesis chapter three just like he does with everyone today, but we must include that she and her husband also had the choice to resist and reject the deceptions of the enemy of our soul the same as we can now. Humans became incarcerated in their depravity and can now only be released by the infinite, divine, and absolute truth which is God Himself.
An interesting consideration is found in John chapter 8 and verse 32, where Jesus said that truth in itself will not necessarily bring personal spiritual deliverance but “knowing” truth (comprehend, perceive, awaken, realize, discern, understand, apprehend) is the act of faith which activates the power of God to spiritually set someone free. “And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”
When people do bad things, they have a momentary check in their conscience which tells them this is wrong. But, as we have been saying, we have the freedom to choose. Children may be more likely to stop and consider both options, but as we grow older many times the heart becomes harder and less sensitive to guilt and condemnation.
As in every person, only the convicting power of God can break through the layers of deception and rebellion that has become the control center of our depraved human nature. Since Adam and Eve severed the beautiful relationship they had with God, every person has been born in a fallen state and has a desperate need to be spiritually redeemed.
Jesus came to earth to shed His blood as the only payment which could pay for the sins of those who would believe and accept Christ as their Lord and Master. This Biblical explanation of our fallen condition gives us an understanding of our tendency to embrace wickedness. We are truly responsible for our decisions because of this privilege to accept or reject the temptations and persuasions from our own carnality.
We can clearly see that without inviting Jesus to be the King of our life, we will continue being our own worst enemy. Yes, we are still being influenced by Satan, but generally speaking, the devil has never forced anyone to do evil, the same as God has never forced anyone to love and serve His kingdom. Within this opportunity to live however we want, being aware of good and evil is now included within the spectrum of human existence.
This disturbing truth exposes the secret motives and dark rebellious nature of mankind and allows us to know that our words and deeds are done with a cognitive understanding. To realize that humans know they are wrong and basically defiant to change their ways, sheds light on the consequences for those who reject His priceless offer of eternal salvation.