12 Jan Eve Ate A Mango
So I made the offhand comment that Eve picked and ate a mango and sin began. I immediately came under siege. A woman pounced on me with all the weight of tradition. Didn’t I know it was an apple? I couldn’t resist. I asked her if it was a Golden Delicious or a Yellow Granny. I backed off as I saw the ire rise in her eyes.
It is fascinating how strongly we will defend what we really don’t know but believe we know. Traditions are the fabric of our lives. They form the basis for our personal identity and a foundation for our faith. As Tevye, the protagonist in Fiddler on the Roof, sang, “Because of our traditions, everyone knows who he is and what God expects him to do.” When we jar someone’s traditional beliefs we jar the core of their identity. Didn’t I know it was an apple? She was not concerned about the apple vs. mango vs. avocado. She was concerned about who she was? If the apple wasn’t correct then the story of Adam and Eve wasn’t correct and if it wasn’t correct than the Bible wasn’t correct and if the Bible wasn’t correct than she wasn’t going to live forever. No sir. It was an apple!
But, I understood that and should not have continued the taunt with the Yellow Granny remark. Jesus would not have done that. Controlling one’s tongue and the fun of twisting something in just a little bit deeper is so difficult to resist. James, Jesus’ brother, said it so well. “But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.” Alas. How thankful we are that forgiveness is a request away.