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The Great Controversy, by Ellen G. White, [1858], at


The Fall of Man

I saw that the holy angels often visited the garden, and gave instruction to Adam and Eve concerning their employment, and also taught them concerning the rebellion of Satan and his fall.  The angels warned them of Satan, and cautioned them not to separate from each other in their employment, for they might be brought in contact with this fallen foe.  The angels enjoined upon them to closely follow the directions God had given them, for in perfect obedience only were they safe.  And if they were obedient, this fallen foe could have no power over them.

            Satan commenced his work with Eve, to cause her to disobey.  She first erred in wandering from her husband, next, in lingering around the forbidden tree, and next in listening to the voice of the tempter, and even daring to doubt what God had said - In the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.  She thought, Perhaps it does not mean just as the Lord said.  She ventured to disobey.  She put forth her hand, took of the fruit, and ate.  It was pleasing to the eye, and pleasant to the taste.  She was jealous that God had withheld from them what was really for their good.  She offered the fruit to her husband, thereby tempting him.  She related to Adam all that the serpent had said, and expressed her astonishment that he had the power of speech.

            I saw a sadness came over Adam’s countenance.  He appeared afraid and astonished.  A struggle appeared to be going on in his mind.  He felt sure that this was the foe which they had been warned against, and that his wife must die.  They must be separated.  His love for Eve was strong.  And in utter discouragement he resolved to share her fate.  He seized the fruit, and quickly ate it.  Then Satan exulted.  He had rebelled in heaven, and had sympathizers who loved him, and followed him in his rebellion.  He fell, and caused others to fall with him.  And he had now tempted the woman to distrust God, to inquire into his wisdom, and to seek to penetrate his all-wise plans.  Satan knew the woman would not fall alone. Adam, through his love for Eve, disobeyed the command of God and fell with her.

            The news of man’s fall spread through heaven.  Every harp was hushed.  The angels cast their crowns from their heads in sorrow.  All heaven was in agitation.  A counsel was held to decide what must be done with the guilty pair.  The angels feared that they would put forth the hand, and eat of the tree of life, and be immortal sinners.  But God said that he would drive the transgressors from the garden.  Angels were commissioned immediately to guard the way of the tree of life.  It had been Satan’s studied plan that Adam and Eve should disobey God, receive his frown, and then be led on to partake of the tree of life, that they might live forever in sin and disobedience, and thus sin be immortalized.  But holy angels were sent to drive them out of the garden, while another company of angels were commissioned to guard the way to the tree of life.  Each of these mighty angels appeared to have something in their right hand, which looked like a glittering sword.

            Then Satan triumphed.  Others he had made to suffer by his fall.  He had been shut out of heaven, they out of Paradise.


See Genesis chap.3


Next: Chapter 3. The Plan of Salvation