English Standard Version
Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?”
King James Bible
Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?
American Standard Version
Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which Jehovah God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of any tree of the garden?
Now the serpent was more subtle than any of the beasts of the earth which the Lord God made. And he said to the woman: Why hath God commanded you, that you should not eat of every tree of paradise?
English Revised Version
Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of any tree of the garden?
Webster's Bible Translation
Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made: and he said to the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?
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CommentaryKeil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament
"The serpent was more subtle than all the beasts of the field, which Jehovah God had made." - The serpent is here described not only as a beast, but also as a creature of God; it must therefore have been good, like everything else that He had made. Subtilty was a natural characteristic of the serpent (Matthew 10:16), which led the evil one to select it as his instrument. Nevertheless the predicate ערוּם is not used here in the good sense of φρόνιμος (lxx), prudens, but in the bad sense of πανοῦργος, callidus. For its subtilty was manifested as the craft of a tempter to evil, in the simple fact that it was to the weaker woman that it turned; and cunning was also displayed in what it said: "Hath God indeed said, Ye shall not eat of all the trees of the garden?" כּי אף is an interrogative expressing surprise (as in 1 Samuel 23:3; 2 Samuel 4:11): "Is it really the fact that God has prohibited you from eating of all the trees of the garden?" The Hebrew may, indeed, bear the meaning, "hath God said, ye shall not eat of every tree?" but from the context, and especially the conjunction, it is obvious that the meaning is, "ye shall not eat of any tree." The serpent calls God by the name of Elohim alone, and the woman does the same. In this more general and indefinite name the personality of the living God is obscured. To attain his end, the tempter felt it necessary to change the living personal God into a merely general numen divinium, and to exaggerate the prohibition, in the hope of exciting in the woman's mind partly distrust of God Himself, and partly a doubt as to the truth of His word. And his words were listened to. Instead of turning away, the woman replied, "We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden; but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die." She was aware of the prohibition, therefore, and fully understood its meaning; but she added, "neither shall ye touch it," and proved by this very exaggeration that it appeared too stringent even to her, and therefore that her love and confidence towards God were already beginning to waver. Here was the beginning of her fall: "for doubt is the father of sin, and skepsis the mother of all transgression; and in this father and this mother, all our present knowledge has a common origin with sin" (Ziegler). From doubt, the tempter advances to a direct denial of the truth of the divine threat, and to a malicious suspicion of the divine love (Genesis 3:4, Genesis 3:5). "Ye will by no means die" (לא is placed before the infinitive absolute, as in Psalm 49:8 and Amos 9:8; for the meaning is not, "he will not die;" but, ye will positively not die). "But
(Note: כּי used to establish a denial.)
God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, your eyes will be opened,
(Note: ונפקחוּ perfect c. ו consec. See Gesenius, ֗126, Note 1.)
and ye will be like God, knowing good and evil." That is to say, it is not because the fruit of the tree will injure you that God has forbidden you to eat it, but from ill-will and envy, because He does not wish you to be like Himself. "A truly satanic double entendre, in which a certain agreement between truth and untruth is secured!" By eating the fruit, man did obtain the knowledge of good and evil, and in this respect became like God (Genesis 3:7 and Genesis 3:22). This was the truth which covered the falsehood "ye shall not die," and turned the whole statement into a lie, exhibiting its author as the father of lies, who abides not in the truth (John 8:44). For the knowledge of good and evil, which man obtains by going into evil, is as far removed from the true likeness of God, which he would have attained by avoiding it, as the imaginary liberty of a sinner, which leads into bondage to sin and ends in death, is from the true liberty of a life of fellowship with God.)
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
serpent. The Samaritan Copy, instead of nachash, 'a serpent,' reads cachash, 'a liar or deceiver,' read Joh.
Yea, hath. Heb. Yea, because, etc. hath.
"Behold, I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.
2 Corinthians 11:3
But I am afraid that as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your thoughts will be led astray from a sincere and pure devotion to Christ.
And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world--he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him.
The serpent poured water like a river out of his mouth after the woman, to sweep her away with a flood.
And he seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years,
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ESV Text Edition: 2016. The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.