Genesis 2:16-17: And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, "From any tree of the garden you may eat freely; but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you shall surely die. " NASB
In my own early learning of the “forbidden fruit,” I was taught that Eve tempted Adam with an Apple which he then ate. Then, when God found out about it, He was very angry because He had previously prohibited the eating of apples – hence the forbidden fruit – and cast Adam and Eve out of Eden (paradise). This concept immediately prompts many questions from inquisitive minds such as why are apples forbidden? But because there are no logical answers to this or any of the other questions that stem from this scenario, the religious leaders and clergy generally finish the question and answer session with the all-encompassing “The Lord works in mysterious ways.” I beg to differ.
While I will grant you that conventional religion works in extremely mysterious ways, I am adamantly confident that God is quite logical. You probably have never before heard that God is logical, and even the concept may seem alien, so allow me to present a logical sequence of events for your consideration.
Jews, Christians, Hindus, Buddhists, Muslims amazingly all agree that God is love. Okay, so God is Love. What is love? Love is the universal similarity between all people. The Bible tells us that we were created in the image of God. We clearly don’t physically look like God, so what this means is that we contain His essence – love. Love is our commonality and moreover, our soul. Love is, if you will, our “piece of God” that we all get to carry with us on our life’s journey. Our soul, this love, is the image of God.
But what really is this love. Love is an emotion which, in the common vernacular, typically conveys feelings of deep liking, affection and tenderness. Love in its proper context, however, is more than simply an emotion; it is a behavior and a tool. It is this proper love that reflects the image of God. Further, proper love is the proper usage of the emotion. To say (and believe) that you love your wife but then beat her up because you get mad at her is not proper love; it is, at best, a dysfunction and a distortion.
Religion that condones such behavior is also a dysfunction and a distortion, but God remains as proper love.
Genesis 1:29 says “And God said: Behold, I have given you every herb yielding seed, which is upon the face of all the Earth, and every tree, in which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed – to you it shall be for food.”
Apple trees are part of “every tree” and these clearly were for food. How anybody can then argue that apples were the forbidden fruit is something of an illogical mystery itself. Biblically or logically, how or why would apples cause a fall from paradise? There is no proper logical or biblical answer to this question. Apples ain’t the problem!
For a moment, in your mind’s eye, imagine a paradise. I’m sure you’ll agree it is a place of peace, tranquility and harmony. Doesn’t it make logical sense, then, that the “thing” that destroys paradise is the antithesis of paradise – something anti-peace, anti-tranquility and anti-harmony?
I think we can agree that murder would be quite a paradise-buster, so consider this: Almost all humans say they love animals, but is murdering an animal (or having somebody else murder it for you) so that you can eat its flesh truly loving? Which of the murdered animals would, if they could, say they feel loved by their assailants?
The picture of paradise is clear. Eating flesh does not and cannot exist in our pure paradise. Oh, we certainly can pretend that it does, but then what we have is a pretend-paradise, replete with murder, disease, cruelty, misery and greeting cards with slogans like “Merry Christmas with peace and harmony for all.”
Flesh is the “forbidden fruit.” It logically destroys paradise and is in stark contradiction to God’s directive in Genesis 1:29.
Not convinced? “The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, and the lion shall eat straw like the ox: and dust shall be the serpent’s food. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all My holy mountain, saith the Lord” Isaiah 65:25.
Certainly, many people, even many “religious people” will cite passages from the Bible that depict people eating animals in an attempt to justify this behavior. But you must remember that the Bible not only shows us a picture of paradise, it also contains intense violence. It shows us the roadmap to both. So the question you really have to ask yourself is, do you want to contribute to the violence or to the paradise?
The picture of paradise, be it in your mind’s eye, your soul, or spelled out in the Bible is crystal clear. It is a plant-based, vegan diet that is spelled out and mandated for life in paradise.
A boardroom is where a board of directors convenes; paradise is where God and the godly convene. Love and the logic of love can get us back to the paradise originally created. When we live as God would live (and not until), we will once again find paradise and God. The fact is, He never moved, but we did.
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