The Tree of Life and the Hidden Element

There is a hidden element in finding God’s will. We never know for sure whether we’re heading in the right direction. We might feel confident about our salvation and even hold fast to God’s promise of eternal life; however, while we walk upon this earth, a certain amount of uncertainty remains:

“Should I pursue this career path?”

“Is this person the right one for me?”

“Am I spending enough time with my children?”

“Should I allow my teenager to go to that concert?”

“Is self-publishing the right path for me as a writer?”

“Am I getting in over my head with this house payment?”

Questions barrage us like an automated pitching machine slings baseballs at a reluctant batter.

Sometimes we need to make quick decisions as to which opportunity we should connect with and which we should let pass on by.

Years ago my daughter and I had a discussion about the Tree of Knowledge and the Tree of Life.

She was fascinated by the movie, “The Tree of Life,” and was asking questions.

I explained that there was another tree in the Garden of Eden.

God warned Adam and Eve not to eat from the Tree of Knowledge, but Satan tempted them:

The serpent said to the woman, “You surely will not die! For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” Genesis 3:4-5

 

“But Mom,” my daughter asked, “isn’t it a good thing to know the difference between good and evil?”

“Temptation’s inception began in the garden.” I tried to explain. “The false idea that we can be like God, knowing the difference between good and evil, and therefore not need God.”

During our conversation, I thought about Adam and Eve’s decision to do what God warned them not to do. How God said now they couldn’t live forever because they couldn’t be trusted with such knowledge. In fact, after their disobedience, he kept them from eating from The Tree of Life so they wouldn’t live forever.

So maybe my daughter is right. It isn’t wrong to know the difference between good and evil. It’s just what you do with that knowledge that produces good or evil. And I don’t know about you, but it’s really difficult for me to get that right.

As my daughter and I talked, I went on to explain that not only is The Tree of Life found in the Garden of Eden but also in The Book of Revelation:

On either side of the river was the tree of life, bearing twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit every month; and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. Revelations 22:2

I’m not a theologian, but I do wonder whether the most insidious forms of evil can sometimes mask as good. Haven’t we all read those horrifying articles about upstanding people who are committing atrocities in secret?

We can also spend an entire lifetime doing good works, mastering knowledge, believing in our own moral code, and feeling certain that we do not need a Savior. Yet, He is the Tree of Life.

While we sojourn upon this earth, there is going to be a certain amount of uncertainty: “For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known.” 1 Corinthians 13:12

Until then, we must embrace the hidden element—trust.

A special thanks to the following posts that provided insightful information: http://www.churchisraelforum.com/a_tale_of_two_trees.htmhttp://www.creationtips.com/tree_of_knowledge.html

Scripture quotations taken from the NASB.”

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