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Sin, Suffering, Sagacity: Genesis 2–3

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Chapter Summary

In the Christian tradition, the biblical chapter Genesis 3 recounts the origin of sin. Sin comes in the form of the serpent who seduces the woman to eat the forbidden fruit; the woman in turn seduces the man to do likewise. Consequently they fall from the grace of God, they are expelled from the garden, they are exposed to the hardship and suffering of the world. This chapter addresses some interpretations of the Garden narrative and points out those symbolic and mythological concepts attached to the objects in the garden. In the Ancient Near East trees were common yet simultaneously mythological objects. The Tree of Life was a cosmological tree with its roots in the underworld and the trunk passing through the centre of the earth. The wisdom of serpents represents the power to succeed, the ability to survive, resourcefulness, shrewdness'.

Keywords: Genesis-garden; serpent; sin; suffering; tree



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