Who's at fault for what?
Who's at fault for damning all of mankind with regard to the Genesis story? It's either Yahweh or his creations.
Scrictly in regards to the Genesis story, how was all of mankind damned and to what are we assuming mankind was damned to?
The only answer the story allows for seems to be death, but then there's the issue of us assuming without any reason to do so according to the story, that man was in fact immortal before "the fall." A good case can be made that man was a dying creature Adam partook of the forbidden fruit and that man not dying had he not eaten would have been solely due to the providence of man's creator who put a tree of life in the garden and allowed man to have access to it.
If you are asking about who's fault it was that Adam and the woman ate of the forbidden tree, then the answer appears to be found in Adam, Eve, and to a lessor degree, the tempter.
Here's the deal. If Yahweh is omnipotent, omniscient, and already had a plan set in motion, then it's on Yahweh. The only real way out is to say that it wasn't part of his divine plan, but then you've got problems like an incompetent deity to deal with.
Agreed. For all intents and purposes it appears that man was set up to fall by man's creator. That does not change the apparent fact that the couple in the garden paradise could have chosen to listen to and obey God as opposed to listening to the whyle serpent.
In this scenario, God is like Chris Hanson and has set up a sting operation for would be perps. He could have sent them emails and instruction about not being pedaphiles, but instead He chose to have His subjects sent erotic emails to tempt them with that which was a punishable offense.
Wait, was this before the "Fall of Man" when everything was perfect? That can't be the case. As others have mentioned, things had already fallen apart before the "Fall". A snake full of sin was already plotting in the garden. <--There's a little imperfection that already snuck in. Only it didn't actually sneak in, because of the all knowing deity in the sky and all.
How much thought went into their decision making? What were the deciding factors? They lacked some serious knowledge that could have helped them in determining the correct course of action: the knowledge of good and evil. Honestly, they couldn't have even known what the good choice was. Yahweh created two mentally handicapped human beings then damned them for their handicaps he originally deprived them of.
If perfect implies completeness, then why wouldn't Yahweh have given his perfect creations a complete knowledge including good and evil to help them with what was THE most crucial moment of their lives?
So how the hell is their punishment justified, TOT?
What is meant by "when everything was perfect?" And why assume that God's creations were "perfect" in the first place? Obviously the humans were not perfect, otherwise there would be no need for the majic trees. According to the story, even before man fell there was a serpent directing against the edicts of God, so how is it conceivable that the situation was somehow "perfect" prior to the fall? I totally understand your sentiments.
As far as what A&E are said to have known according to the story, we can conclude that they knew that the tree's fruit was forbidden and they knew there was a punishment that would be levied for consuming of its fruit. Eve varifies these conclusions for us in her conversation with the serpent. Did they fully understand what death meant and were they able to properly grasp the significance of the decision to disobey their creator, we don't know.
To me, the story told in the first 3 chapters of Genesis does much, but describing a perfect creation is not one of those things. When analyzed further and on its own merits, the punishment man ultimately got seems like a restriction from access to the magic tree of life along with exile from the presence of and possible
divine protection of man's creator that apparently had some sort of undisclosed need for man to exist and potentially sin. Was that/those punishments justified? I can see an argument being made in both directions with equal conviction and subjectivity.