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Core Christianity: Tough Questions Answered

FAQ: Why Did God Let Adam and Eve Sin?

by Adriel Sanchez posted June 17, 2022

If God is all-knowing and all-powerful, he knew that Adam and Eve would fall into sin. So why did he allow Satan to tempt them? Why would he want this to happen to his creation?

A lot of Christians ask this question. The prophet Ezekiel said that God doesn’t take pleasure in the death of anyone. He wants sinners to repent and live (Ezek. 18:32). Psalm 5:4 says “You are not a God who delights in wickedness; evil may not dwell with you.” So we have to understand, first and foremost, who our God is. He’s not a God who takes pleasure in evil and sin.

But we also know that he’s sovereign, and he allowed Adam and Eve to fall. That doesn’t mean that he coerced them or put the serpent in the garden as a stumbling block. God called Adam and Eve to tend and guard the garden, and they chose to disobey God’s word. They could have obeyed, but they freely chose to sin. As a result, sin entered the world.

Sin isn’t something that God delights in. It grieves him. Our sins as believers grieve the Holy Spirit.

So how do we make sense of this? God is all-knowing, and yet he allowed this to happen.

First, God didn’t permit anything to take place in his good world that he hadn’t already determined to fix. So while God allowed humans to sin, he’s always been in control. And God is always in the business of bringing about redemption, restoration, and healing. That’s precisely what he did in the Garden of Eden. In Genesis 3:15, he promised Adam and Eve that the seed of the woman, Jesus Christ, would crush the head of the serpent, Satan. God would send his Son so that our sins might be forgiven.

God doesn’t delight in sin. He delights in goodness and righteousness. That’s what he calls us to. God didn’t want Adam and Eve to sin in the sense that he took pleasure in it, but he did allow it according to his sovereign purposes. But he also purposed to bring about redemption through it. And that’s what we can experience. That’s what you can experience by placing your trust in Jesus Christ and receiving the forgiveness of your sins.

This article is part of our Frequently Asked Questions series. Listen to Pastor Adriel answer this question on Core Radio here.


Dig deeper with these free resources from Core Christianity:

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10 Ways God Reveals Himself as our Father
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Photo of Adriel Sanchez

Adriel Sanchez

Adriel Sanchez is pastor of North Park Presbyterian Church, a congregation in the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA). In addition to his pastoral responsibilities, he also serves the broader church as a host on the Core Christianity radio program, a live, daily call-in talk show where he answers listeners' questions about the Bible and the Christian faith. He and his wife Ysabel live in San Diego with their five children.

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