The enlightenment teaching of the Essene was known as THE WAY. This teaching became the final interpretation on the Law and the Prophets, as revealed by Yeshua Messiah. The Way became the transitional teaching into the early church. Many of these teaching are contained within modern religious thought, many are not.
This article covers Cain’s entrance into the world, and references the Garden of Eden.
The last phrase of ch. 4.13, “anyone who meets me will kill me,” poses quite a problem. Who are these ‘anyones’ Cain refers to? We know these people cannot be his siblings, for Cain will no longer be living in Eden. Who, indeed, can these ‘anyones’ be? These ‘anyones’ are other human beings, but humans who know nothing about God. There is much to say on this subject, and it begins in the garden.
The Jewish and early Christian traditions involving enlightened understanding are first set forth in the story of Adam and Eve. Adam may eat of the Tree of Life, but not from the fruit of the Tree of Good and Bad. God tells Adam, and Adam is later to convey this understanding to Eve, which he does. Adam has God’s word; Eve has Adam’s word. Much later this example of the conveyance of knowledge allows that Jewish women should be taught of their husbands, but the husbands go to synagogue (God) for their instruction.
The above procedure and sequence for passing on knowledge allows that someone will be responsible for teaching. Without this responsibility being assigned the understanding of Judaism might become lost. It also allows for others to listen, women and young adults, and upon listening they may deduce knowledge the teacher may not. Questions may be asked which will require further inquiry. Further development of learning and teaching skills occurs. Finally, having the man responsible for teaching requires him to correct the error Adam obviously made in not handing down God’s word correctly, and secondly it admonishes those who are listening to listen with intent and purpose.
Be that as it was in Old Testament history, the teaching of the Way would describe the allegory of the garden as wholeness and oneness with God, the reality of enlightenment with Him and in Him, intimate and personal, and that would apply to both Adam and Eve. Although the garden is physically outside of oneself, the enlightenment and relationship is not outside oneself, it is from the inside out. The kingdom of God is thus alive in Adam and Eve, and thus they share unity with God.
As to what may be partaken of, the fruit from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Bad may not be eaten. God, essentially, must allow choice, else individuality is sublimated. Choice allows for free will, and symbolically, right choice is now presented as critical to maintain spiritual life. Nachmonides interprets the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Bad as the Tree of Desire, ritz hada’at, commentary on Gen. 2.9. As the seduction proceeds the serpent presents the fruit from the Tree of Desire, or the Knowledge of Good and Bad, of which Eve is to partake, with the result to make Eve a divine being.
Satan still possesses wisdom, as he is angelic in his creation, which represents the light; but he is also darkened in his person, lost sanctity, and is now personified as pursuing his own course. Since he is no longer in God’s will, he is no admirer of God’s creation which is achieved by God’s will. He perceives Eve as having heard about the fruit of the Tree of Desire, but it is Adam who was directly taught by God. Eve is once removed, as she is also symbolized as once removed from Adam’s rib, and she is at a distance from Adam, alone. It is now the private discussion takes place between Satan and Eve.
Eve, for her part, must have been sitting in the tree and admiring the fruit, or perhaps wondering about the prohibition not to eat. Satan did not lead Eve to the tree, she was already there, and this may be one reason why Adam was not near her, and certainly not close enough to overhear the conversation. The temptation is complex, so the conversation slyly begins with a question, but one technically misstated. “Yea, hath God said, You shall not eat?” What God said is stated in Gen. 2.17, “But of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, thou shall not eat of it, for…thou shalt surely die,” even though just previously in v. 16 God does say, “…of every tree of the garden though mayest eat freely.” Satan speaks a half-truth, but does mention God’s caveat as to what Adam and Eve may partake of and what they may not.
In verse 3.3 Eve makes a peculiar statement. She says, “…neither shall ye touch it.” Something peculiar lurks within the fruit, else it is most attractive to the eye. If you are not even supposed to touch it, then why do Eve sit next to it? For some reason Eve is already moving in that direction. The enlightened understanding would propose it as a mysterious fruit, but a mystery that should not be inspected nor embraced. To be close to it is to engage it, yet here Eve sits with the fruit nearby. Opportunity has come into Satan’s hands. ‘So, this fruit intrigues you,’ he thinks. Best now to wheedle in as a snake may do.
Verse five concerning knowledge of good and evil, and “ye shall be as gods.”
Eve now perceives the fruit as “to make one wise,” and “ye shall be like gods,” Gen. 3.5-6, and by Eve is finally pronounced “good.” She does not listen to her instruction from Adam, nor the root of the instruction which comes from God. Now about herself, she embraces desire for power and desire for status. Almost all scholars recognize the fall as a reduction into a self-conscious state instead of remaining in an enlightened God-conscious state, with mankind left to pursue God-consciousness ever since.
She enters into tantalizing desire (temptation), and once entered seeks position or status of her own accord. She does not depend upon God to bring her up, to make her like God and after His own plan, but instead sees her own efforts, her own decisions instead of God’s direction or God’s wisdom. Temptation, through the conduit of lust for power and status, and based on disobedience, Eve finds the fruit desirable and becomes overwhelmed. Nor does Adam correct her, nor does he disavow what she has done, but instead does the same as she– he inspects the fruit, and by listening to Eve who has been instructed by Satan he essentially replaces his godly understanding with Satan’s. All events are now moving in the opposite direction God intended.
Satan’s rebel spirit emerges when he tempts Eve. Satan already knows that misleading is often more effective than lying. One may be caught in a lie, but to engender doubt or suspicion leaves the door open as to motive, and allows for what appears to be an innocent inquiry. For the listener, once mislead the person begins to fill in the blanks as to what is right and wrong, he begins to mislead himself, and finally he fools himself.Eve and then Adam chose spiritual death.
Where once Adam conveyed to Eve what God had said, now it is from Satan to Eve to Adam that the conveyance is made. That which is up is now down, back becomes forth, and side to side must fit in somewhere. The order of events for man now moves through an opposite hierarchy. All godly standards are destroyed, and must now be rebuilt. Disobedience opened the door, but the true sin is one of rebellion. Satan’s rebellion enters the human condition.
Rebellion leads us to the understanding that if you have committed one sin you have committed them all, for the condition of rebellion affects all attributes of character. Therein, all have sinned and that sin can only be corrected by complete favor, or grace (see, Noah). Whether this exact religious description is accepted by the few or the many, the basis and the need for a ‘saving grace’ is biblically established in the story of the Garden of Eden. For this twist in fate has now determined very different outcomes, and the perfection of the garden and oneness is now dissembled. The rebellion of Satan has now spread into the enlightenment and oneness with God!
Adam and Eve reject their dependence upon God, they accept different standards, and thus tarnish their relationship with God. Faithfulness diminished, they become ‘naked’, that is, weak and vulnerable, and experience a loss of spiritual light and insight. They have lost their vision and will now have to determine good and bad for themselves, much of which will occur through experimentation. Since they have accepted temptation and acted upon it, temptation will follow man throughout the length of his life.
In the teaching of the Way, the Garden of Eden lesson shows us that the ‘Satan-Serpent’ always seduces by lust and desire. This seduction will always boil down to the desire for some form of power. Further, that we as human beings deal with power on a daily basis is seldom mentioned, but it is certainly true. The lesson for Adam and Eve would caution to watch who and what you desire, and be aware of the powers you may initiate, for later you will have to deal with the repercussions. When the repercussions arrive all excuses will ring hollow.
Within this context of unrighteous desires spring the many conniving human attitudes and motives (Hebrew arum:crafty, Gn. 3.1). Once the fruit of the Tree of (Unrighteous) Desire is indulged, the fracture and consuming dissolution within the soul becomes complete, it splinters throughout and will have varied consequences, some known and some unknown. The Tree of (long) Life can no longer be a part of Adam and Eve’s life, for the length of years would conclude too great a suffering, and it is to each following generation that the years of life shorten. The return to God must be assumed by hard experience yielding hard lessons.
The separation, or the ‘fall from wholeness’—Adam and Eve are diminished, their soul-light is diminished, their power to name (Naming: Back to the Garden) is diminished— they are diminished in every way, and they stand before God revealed, or naked. Where once their light was great, but by their own choices concerning disobedience, lust and desire, they are sent into the world of circumstance. In much the same manner we now observe Cain. His crime, however, is more severe. Thus his punishment is much greater.
In terms of the Way, God has drawn the lines. Will you stay in the enlightenment with God, remain godly regardless of faults, secure and in communication with Him? Or, like Cain will end up doing, will you venture into the world and lose yourself? Instead of choosing between the good and the good, and therein some form of good follows, we are now left to choose good from bad, and without the certainty beforehand of which is which. The world we live in today has arrived, with the greater wisdom superseded by careening cause and effect.
As we continue, apparently God agrees with Cain on this point concerning the ‘anyones’, for in v. 15, The Lord said to him, “I promise, if anyone kills Cain, sevenfold vengeance (seven generations) shall be taken on him.” The unenlightened human race which abides on this planet now await the wrathful Cain.
As to Cain himself, his new life begins in what might be thought of as a society without culture. It is here he takes a wife, although Josephus says he took his wife (sister) with him. Nonetheless, he probably lives among people whose assets are few, almost certainly living in a much more squalid condition. He is a wanderer, and not necessarily a part of a more organized nomadic culture. He and his family will not dwell in the nearby garden environs, they will live ‘hard scrabble’. It is only later that Cain will enter into nomadic culture, and then to build a city.
To give a final settlement on Cain, God puts a mark upon him so no one will even attempt to kill him. Finally in v. 16, “Cain left the presence of the Lord and settled in the land of Nod, east of Eden.”