28 August 2013

Eve's Tears, Changes, and Paradoxical Observation



Yesterday my husband and I had the opportunity to go to the temple for the first time since the new endowment film was released. And even though the script for the ceremony was exactly the same, I was able to take away so many things I never noticed before.

The most significant change for me to the ceremony was the scene of Eve being tempted. The two films could not have BEEN more different on the subject.

First of all, Eve in the new film is very thoughtful. She pauses, she thinks before she responds, she comprehends her choice, and its impact. And before she partakes of the fruit and asks what has always seemed to me a brilliant question--she sheds a tear. She mourns. She feels pain, and not just any pain. Something very significant--a recognition that she is about to leave her God, her home, and possibly even her husband. Even in her innocent state, she feels this, comprehends this reality.

Let me be the voice of reason here for a second and remind everyone that Adam and Eve are innocent at this point. They can't comprehend good and evil, virtue and vice, health and sickness, pleasure and pain... can they? Or is that a half truth as well? Consider the source of that information.

Do you really believe him?

And with that question, so much opens up for our consideration.

If Eve can't feel pain, why is she crying before she even partakes of the fruit?

If Adam can't comprehend moral choices, why is he so adamant about keeping all of the commandments?

Being innocent is not the same thing as being stupid--and Adam and Eve certainly were not stupid. The heart is eternal, and in their hearts was a great wealth of knowledge and understand which shows through them, even in their state of innocence. Although they were not capable of full moral agency, or much of the experiences which they would gain through being mortal, they were certainly capable of more than I realized, even in the state of being innocent.

I have long believed that Eve was much more aware, much wiser in her choice to Fall than I was ever able to prove in words. But the new presentation of the endowment gives voice to that understanding in a way that I never imagined before. It is yet another gift which worshiping in the temple has afforded, a gift I could not have received in any other way.

I know that God has a plan for all of us here on earth. He is very aware of us, hasn't forgotten us at all. From the very beginning, He planned our education and salvation. He planned our return to Him, and sent His Son to be our Savior so we could return home to His presence. But more importantly, because of Jesus Christ and His atoning sacrifice, we are able to have so much joy and connection to God, here and now, that wouldn't be possible without Him. And when we worship in the temple, I feel like I come closer to God than in any other place I could be. I know it is the house of God, the place where I can know Him and all He has done for me.

I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet, and that he restored the true organization and worship of the temple here on earth. I know the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the true church of Jesus Christ here on the earth, and I leave you my witness in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

1 comment:

  1. I just found your blog, and I just love it so far. This article you wrote brought a tear to my eye. I have always admired Eve and the choice she made, she was very strong and courageous. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and your testimony.

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