18. God honored freedom by giving Satan access to the garden.

And the Lord God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.” {Genesis 2:16-17}

So why, you may ask, would God allow His enemy to have access to the planet at all, let alone the garden?! If He had already seen the chaos and misery Satan had incited, destroying the peace and tranquility of heaven, why would He even give him the chance to do that very same thing here?

You know the answer by now, don’t you? It was because of freedom. Freedom is the highest priority in God’s universe, and He will protect and preserve this freedom at all costs. By allowing Satan access to the garden, God was honoring freedom. He was honoring Satan’s freedom, giving him the opportunity to choose whether or not to continue to wage war against God.

And God was also honoring Adam and Eve’s freedom by giving Satan access to the garden. He didn’t isolate them, refusing to let them entertain thoughts and ideas that were contrary to His will. By allowing Satan to have access, He was also acknowledging and preserving Adam and Eve’s freedom to choose—even if it wasn’t a choice He wanted them to make.

If you want to dig deeper—
Genesis 2:15-17
Genesis 3:1-6