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It sure seems that way to me.
The text says that G-d created the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil (Gen. 2:9). Which means the possibility of evil existed before Adam and Eve ate the fruit.
I was thinking about this after a recent kerfuffle on Ricochet about whether G-d is capable of doing or being evil, and it occurred to me that the common religious belief that G-d can ONLY be good seems to be clearly contradicted by the text itself. He made the world. Some He calls “Good.” Some, He does not.
I might qualify the above by pointing out that in the Torah both “Good” and “Evil” are not really things in themselves: they are judgements, created by and subject to the perceptions of the viewer. And if this is the case, then the assessment of both good and evil come down to our own mental breadth and faculties. An animal knows nothing of either. But thanks to eating the fruit, both G-d and Man are able to make judgements accordingly.
In sum: the concept of evil did not rely on sin.Published in