Did e’er such love and sorrow meet?
Love and Sorrow first made their acquaintance in a lush garden named Eden. Love was there first, leaving traces wherever the naked eyes of the Man or the Woman could see. For some time, Love was life itself.
But Sorrow visited the garden, in disguise. The Man and the Woman fell for it. The Serpent ushered in a Trojan Horse of sorts — on the outside, the taste of biting into what’s forbidden, the thrill of escaping the law, the trappings of “being like God.” But lurking inside was an army that would plague humanity for millennia: Regret, Anguish, Misery, Pain, and Despair.
In that moment, Love left the Man and the Woman behind. All they could feel was Sorrow’s cold grip.
Love was still with the Maker. But the Maker knew that Sorrow had paid His garden, and His people, a visit. The Maker had to ask a question. A question motivated by Love. A question motivated by Sorrow.
“Where are you?“
We recall the rest of the episode. The Man’s protest, the protoevangelium, The Maker’s curses, the knitted animal skins. But the episode’s end is most striking:
“Now, lest he reach out his hand and take also of the tree of life and eat, and live forever—“ therefore the LORD God sent him out from the garden of Eden.
The Maker never finished His sentence. Why?
My best guess is that the sorrow of the thought was so great, He could barely speak it.
The Maker did not want Man and Woman to live forever with Sorrow. He loved them too much to let that happen.
So, The Maker and The Man separated. Temporarily.
Sorrow and Love came closer.
This would not be the last tree to bring these two together.