We tend to think of evil as an act in and of itself. The reality is that evil, or sin (as Christians call it), is better judged by the outcome of any given act. In the garden of Eden eating fruit from a tree is not, in and of itself, an evil act. First and foremost it was evil because it was an act of overt rebellion against the Creator of the universe. Most of us understand that such rebellion is evil.
However, in addition, consider that evil should be defined by the outcome of the act. The result of Eve and Adam’s decision to disobey God’s command to not eat fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil is a broken relationship with each other and with their Creator.
–this is an excerpt from the book “Soul Surgeon”. Go to resources to purchase a hard copy or ebook.
Evil (or sin, as it would come to be called) always has two outcomes as it works its way out in human life.
Evil results in the breakdown of an intimate, open relationship with each other
Evil results in the breakdown of an intimate, open relationship with God.
No longer would Adam and Eve trust each other. Rather, they would consistently refuse to take responsibility for their actions and blame someone else. Says Adam, “It wasn’t my fault–Eve made me do it.” Eve responds, “It’s not my fault–the serpent made me do it.” They were no longer trusting co-regents of paradise.
No longer would Adam and Eve trust God. They were afraid of Him, and hid.
It wasn’t God who broke relationship with us; it was humanity that broke relationship with Him. God created people with free will and, with that free will, humanity has chosen the wrong way. In spite of that, God did not abandon Adam and Eve but reached out to his disobedient children. We may be separated from God, but he is not separated from us. He loves us intimately and unconditionally. And He showed this by entering into the mess of evil we had created. God the Father sent His son Jesus to experience first-hand the worst abuse anyone could experience. It is through His suffering, His death, and resurrection that relationship with God has been restored. He took the initiative to remind us that He desires relationship with us.
The reason any act of evil or sin against another separates us from God or from each other is because it creates a barrier in a relationship. When someone sins against us, in our hearts we, generally speaking, come to one or both of two conclusions. The first is that this person has hurt me, and to protect myself from further pain I will put up some type of wall of self-protection. The second is that we conclude that there is not a loving God in the world because he allowed this to happen to me.
That is the destructiveness of sin and the reality of the human heart. When we are sinned against, we put up a wall of self-protection between us and the other person and God. This wall of self-protection keeps us from having the type of relationship God intended us to have with others and himself.