Genesis 3:5—Is man made like God or does he become like God?

Problem: Genesis 1:27 says “God created man in His own image.” But in Genesis 3:22 God said, “the man has become like one of Us, to know good and evil.” The former seems to affirm that humans are made like God, and the latter appears to assert that he becomes like God.

Solution: The two passages are speaking of two different things. Genesis 1 is speaking about a human virtue by creation, while Genesis 3 is referring to what he had by acquisition. The first passage refers to Adam and Eve before the Fall, and the last is referring to them after the Fall. The former refers to their nature and the latter to their state. By creation Adam did not know good and evil. Once he sinned, he knew good and evil. Once these differences are understood, there is no conflict.

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This excerpt is from When Critics Ask: A Popular Handbook on Bible Difficulties (Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books, 1992). © 2014 Norman Geisler and Thomas Howe. All rights reserved. Used by permission. Click here to purchase this book.