In Genesis 3:14 "The LORD God said to the serpent, "Because you have done this, Cursed are you more than all cattle, And more than every beast of the field; On your belly you will go, And dust you will eat All the days of your life"

We know that God is omnipotent and everything is subject to God's providence, even the action of the devil. It is universally accepted among faith that the serpent was permitted by God to tempt Adam & Eve for their perfection.

In CCC381 it stated "Man is predestined to reproduce the image of God's Son made man, the "image of the invisible God" (Col 1:15), so that Christ shall be the first-born of a multitude of brothers and sisters (cf. Eph 1:3-6; Rom 8:29).

Adam & Eve being subjected to temptation, God's providence is intended on the mastery or perfection of virtue to achieve Theosis.

The early Christians had a specific name for this process of becoming more like God. It was (and still is) called “theosis”. We sometimes see this rendered as “divinization” or “deification” in Western Christianity, but the three terms all describe the same thing. St. Athanasius puts it very succinctly: “God became man so that man might become God.” The Early Church Fathers found the roots of this concept of theosis in Sacred Scripture:

His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may escape from the corruption that is in the world because of passion, and become partakers of the divine nature.” (2 Peter 1:3-4)

This is the highest call of Adam & Eve...and achieving perfection alone without the serpent would be futile.As written in book of proverbs "gold is tested by fire..."

So, knowing & accepting that the serpent was permitted by God in the Garden of Eden to do his bidding...the big question is, Why the serpent is being punished? If Adam & Eve resisted the serpent temptation that would be the cause of their perfection or Theosis...their body glorified & chaste...

What I am Looking for? RCC views on why God sentenced punishment on the serpent is just, considering the action of the serpent is permitted?

The passages highlighted the phrase "because you done this!"...this passages connotes the serpent might have done beyond what God permits...this will connote & link the significance of the Book of Job describing Satan has limited action on man...but the mystery is even if God set's the limit, is Satan capable of exceeding the limits?

I believe the serpent's action exceeded the limits beyond what God had prescribed before it enters the Garden of Eden...remember Lucifer casted out in Heavenly Realms full of arrogance & pride...and wanted to get revenge and destroy the plan God...the mystery of the serpent exceeded action lies on it's fury & extreme hatred...and we know that uncontrolled anger produces disaster... and for the serpent it incurs the just punishment of God, but why it is just sentenced will depend on the Church teaching>.Godbless


No. God did not commit an injustice.

  1. God created man with the capability to reject Him, but that does not mean it was God's will or desire to be rejected.
  2. Before the fruit was eaten, there was no need for a savior because there was no one needing to be saved.
  3. Eating of the fruit of the tree represented the only possible sin, giving Adam the easiest of choices, follow God's will or reject Him and eat of the tree.
  4. God and man were functioning in perfect harmony, with man walking with God figuratively and literally. We do not know how long this arrangement lasted.

I don't see any indication that God needed or wanted the serpent to destroy this arrangement. God knew it would not last into eternity and had a plan ready for when it did collapse, but that is very different than Him instigating the fall of man. A house divided against itself cannot stand. God did not assign the serpent the task of tempting Adam and Eve.

Even now, God does not tempt a specific person to reject Him so the person can be a tool in God's plan. We all get at least one opportunity to choose Him, but there is no promise of a second opportunity. This is different than God "hardening a heart" once He has been rejected. He specifically does use people that have rejected Him to further His plans(e.g. Pharaoh)

God is just. If you discover a situation in which He appears otherwise, you certainly do not have all of the information.

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  • Wes H your understanding on temptation is not in harmony with scriptures. God is not the author of temptation,agreed.But God allows it for testing and for the good of man.The serpent or Satan cannot act without God permission as written in Book of Job.Adam & Eve highest calling is divination or Theosis, mastery & perfection of virtues & holiness, that's why God permitted Satan/serpent to tempt them for their Theosis..As it is written temptation reveals the character of a man and gold is tested by fire. The serpent is finite and his God given power cannot hinder the plan of God. – jong ricafort Mar 19 '18 at 20:59
  • I was making the point that God allowing temptation is not the same as endorsing or encouraging. The fruit of the tree was already a temptation, however minor it may have been. The serpent's involvement was not needed. God's punishment of the serpent was just because the actions of the serpent were opposed to God's plan, even though God allowed it. Another way to express this is that the serpent was tempted to incite rebellion in man. Sin was born in the serpent when it acted on that temptation and tempted Eve. God punished the serpent for its actions. – Wes H Mar 19 '18 at 22:20
  • Wes H we cannot grasp the Wisdom of God why he allowed the serpent. But we know his promised Romans 8:28. Your idea of serpent was not the devil or Satan contradict RCC and known biblical scholars & theologians.. Your perspective is not in line with Church Fathers teaching with regard to the serpent as Satan. Sorry, not the answer i was looking for. – jong ricafort Mar 20 '18 at 1:45

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