But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
One wisenheimer has observed that there is a profession even older than “the world’s oldest profession”: advertising. Here we see the advertising specialist hard at work: “Eat this apple! It’ll make you godlike!” The function of most advertising is to: a) get people to want something they never noticed wanting before; or b) give people a sense of inner permission for something they want but are ambivalent about wasting time or money over (“You deserve a break today”). The serpent was pretty much operating in “create a demand” mode with Adam and Eve. They were happy before he showed up. It was only by his incessant lies, insisting that they were unhappy even though they couldn’t see how, that he got them snookered into eating the fruit. Since then, his task has been considerably easier, since our fall made it much more likely that we’d fall for the “you deserve to sin today” line of advertising later. Like Joe Camel, the devil knows that the trick is to addict. After that, your customers will keep coming back. They have to. Today, ask the Holy Spirit to help you take another step toward breaking our race’s addiction to sin with the medicine of immortality, the Eucharist.