Jan Breughel, the Elder, ca. 1568-1625: The Garden of Eden, 1612. Brueghel masterfully fills the foreground of the scene with the abundance, happiness, and beauty of newly created life, and then skillfully draws our eyes toward the two tiny figures in the background ominously reaching for the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge.

An Old Testament KnoWhy for Gospel Doctrine Lesson 4: “Because of My Transgression My Eyes Are Opened” (Moses 4; 5:1–15; 6:48-62) (JBOTL04A), 15 January 2018

Question: The scriptures say that Eve was “beguiled” by Satan when she partook of the forbidden fruit. But Latter-day Saints believe she made the right choice. How can both statements be true?

Summary: Some people paint Eve in a negative light, blaming her for bringing sin into the world. This is not the view of the Latter-day Saints. We emphasize her wisdom and perceptiveness, and see her actions in the Garden of Eden as a positive step forward in the divine plan. We teach that she did not commit a sin in taking the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge and honor her lifelong faithfulness. However, a few have taken this view to an unreasonable extreme, arguing that, for various reasons, she was not actually “beguiled” by Satan in her decision to eat the forbidden fruit. On the one hand, some believe that Satan was entirely truthful when he spoke to Eve. On the other hand, others teach or imply that regardless of what Satan did or said, Eve made the right choice with full understanding of the situation. These beliefs are based on honest intent, but are all mistaken. Scripture exposes how Satan used a series of clever tactics to mislead Eve, how God’s wisdom prevailed, and how Eve became a symbol of Wisdom itself.

The full article may be found at the Interpreter Foundation website: KnoWhy OTL04A — Did Satan Actually Deceive Eve?

For a video supplement to this lesson, see “The Tree of Knowledge as the Veil of the Sanctuary” on the FairMormon YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K-B1FeOcTZ8

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