In the following Bible verse, can someone give me their opinion how the connective (conditional "if...then") enhances the meaning of the text and how, without the connective, the meaning of the...

In the following Bible verse, can someone give me their opinion how the connective (conditional "if...then") enhances the meaning of the text and how, without the connective, the meaning of the text would change?

Genesis 2:16 &17

And the LORD God commanded the man, You may freely eat of every tree of the garden; (2:17) but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall die.

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durbanville | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

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And the LORD God commanded the man, You may freely eat of every tree of the garden; (2:17) but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall die.

It always helps to break down sentences when considering logical connectives. The circumstances are therefore that if you eat from it then you die...if you don't eat from it, you don't die. In other words, if and only if you eat from the tree you will die,suggesting that if you have died, then you must have eaten from the tree.

In this case, then, to reiterate: if you eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil you will die and therefore, logically this infers that, if you do not eat from this tree, you will not die. Herein lies the fallacy because this is an assumption we cannot ordinarily make as the statement does not give sufficient information to allow us to assume this. it is not supported. We do not know whether, if you do not eat from the tree, you will not die. Perhaps you will still die. Therefore, the text is enhanced because there is real power in the words and God's warning is so much more an indicator of the consequences of disobeying Him. God is offering eternal life on the condition that the tree is avoided. You are supposed to make the assumption. Logically, if you die then you must have eaten from the tree. God wants you to believe that.

However, considering the antecedent (that is: "of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat") and the consequent (the day that you eat of it you shall die), rearranging the sentence would change the intensity. Imagine saying that you may freely eat of every tree of the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat. There is no dire consequence. God still gives the same instruction but  considering the importance of eternal life,it is not as powerful and sounds more like advice than a warning.  

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