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Use or misuse by Church critics
This verse is used by critics to attempt to show that the LDS doctrine of deification is a teaching of Satan.
The critics seriously misunderstand and misinterpret this passage of scripture.
Note that the serpent makes two claims:
(1) "ye shall not surely die" and
(2) "ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil."
But if one looks forward to Genesis 3:22:
- "And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil:"
So the use of Genesis 3 to counter the doctrine of deification/theosis has two problems associated with it. The first is that Satan never claimed that Adam and Eve would be gods, just that they would be "as gods, knowing good and evil."
The second and bigger problem is that Satan was, in fact, telling the truth on this point. We know he was because after the event the Lord God confirms that Adam and Eve did indeed become as gods, knowing good and evil. As usual, Satan mixes lies and truth. In this case he said that Adam and Eve wouldn't die (a lie) but he also said that their eating would make them "as gods, knowing good and evil" (a truth).
So the lie of Satan in the Garden of Eden was that transgressing God's law would not bring death. This chapter isn't even relevant to beliefs about deification, and the text shows that the comment that was made wasn't a lie at all.
Satan didn't promise that Adam and Eve would become gods, and what Satan did say about becoming as gods was true.
FairMormon Answers articles
FairMormon Topical Guide: Deification FairMormon link