Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, “Has God indeed said, You shall not eat of every tree of the garden?” (Genesis 3:1)
Obviously, there are many concepts revealed in this one verse, hence, the attention we are giving to it. One other component of this needs to be acknowledged before we move on — where this encounter occurred.
The Bible tells us that the Tree of Life and the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil were in “the midst of the garden” (Gen 2:9), which is to say, in the heart of the garden. I have long argued that Eden, the Garden and the midst of the garden constituted the first earthly Sanctuary, corresponding to the Court, the Holy Place and the Holy of Holies, respectively. In other words, the encounter between the woman and the serpent occurred in what would be synonymous with the Most Holy Place — that place where the Creator communes with man.
Furthermore, understanding that our bodies are regarded as “the temple of the Holy Spirit” (1 Cor 6:19), the midst of the garden would correspond to our innermost being, the heart, the place in us the Creator wishes to reside.
We are told to love God with all of our heart, soul and strength — the heart coming first. That implies that if God has our heart, He will have our mind and, eventually, our bodies will fall in line with what we think. This amplifies the tragedy of allowing the Serpent to get into the midst of the Garden. Had he not been there, it is possible this conversation between he and the woman — and consequently, the fall of man — may have never occurred.
The point is: we have to guard our heart; that should be reserved for our Father and Him alone. We can’t let our guard down for a moment, lest the Adversary find a way to sneak in, lure our eyes away from the truth and provoke us to think in a way contrary to what the Word of God says. How we think will determine what we do; how we think is predicated on what’s in our heart.
Blessings and Shalom,