555 Difficult Bible Questions Answered

23. Did Adam and Eve Actually Eat Fruit, or is the Saying a Parable?

The only source of information is the Bible narrative and it contains no intimation that it is to be understood otherwise than literally. Theologians who have preferred to regard the narrative as a parable or allegory have usually been led to do so by the suggestion that the eating of fruit which was "good for food," and "pleasant to the eyes," and was moreover within reach, was an offense too venial to have been justly visited with a punishment so severe and far-reaching. The objection, however, is not well founded, because it ignores the main point involved. The gravity of the offense consisted, not in the act itself, but in the fact that Adam and Eve in committing it were consciously and willfully violating God's explicit and emphatic command. They were punished for disobedience. Even if we should hold that it took some other form than the actual and literal eating of fruit, the principle is the same. There is no valid reason for rejecting the Bible narrative or putting any other construction on the words than is there implied.