Genesis 3:22 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 3:22, NIV: "And the LORD God said, 'The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.'"

Genesis 3:22, ESV: "Then the LORD God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of us in knowing good and evil. Now, lest he reach out his hand and take also of the tree of life and eat, and live forever—”"

Genesis 3:22, KJV: "And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:"

Genesis 3:22, NASB: "Then the LORD God said, 'Behold, the man has become like one of Us, knowing good and evil; and now, he might reach out with his hand, and take fruit also from the tree of life, and eat, and live forever'—"

Genesis 3:22, NLT: "Then the LORD God said, 'Look, the human beings have become like us, knowing both good and evil. What if they reach out, take fruit from the tree of life, and eat it? Then they will live forever!'"

Genesis 3:22, CSB: "The LORD God said, "Since the man has become like one of us, knowing good and evil, he must not reach out, take from the tree of life, eat, and live forever.""

What does Genesis 3:22 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Who is God talking to in this verse when He says that the man has become like "one of us?" Some Bible scholars see this as a reference to the Trinity: God the Father speaking to the Holy Spirit and to Christ. Logic suggests, and Scripture confirms, that all three aspects of the Trinity were present from before the foundation of the world. Other scholars think that maybe God was speaking to nearby angels, one of whom is mentioned in the following verses.

In any case, God confirms the serpent's half-truth that eating from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil has made Adam and Eve like God, in one way. However, this is certainly not the way the snake led them to believe.

According to God's curses, Adam's and Eve's knowledge of good and evil would lead to great frustration, pain, and heartache. They would experience happiness and receive good gifts from God along the way, to be sure, but their days would be punctuated by conflict. In addition, their disobedience, knowing evil, meant that they and their offspring would be capable of continuing to commit great evil.

Although part of the curse, God's oracle that Adam would eventually die was also an act of mercy. Adam's hard life and ability to rebel against God and do harm to others would be limited—unless he ate from the Tree of Life. That would lead to an unending, hopeless existence separated from God.

Apparently, the fruit of the Tree of Life would provide physical immortality to Adam and Eve. For their own good and the good of all, God would not allow this. To be spiritually dead while remaining physically alive forever could only bring endless suffering. It's interesting to note that, depending on how one translated the original Hebrew, God doesn't appear to even finish His sentence before removing Adam and Eve from the garden in the next verse.