1 Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God actually say, ‘You[a] shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?” 2 And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, 3 but God said, ‘You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.’” 4 But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. 5 For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” 6 So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. 7 Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths. (Genesis 3:1-13 ESV)
The serpent told them that they will not surely die but will just be like God, knowing good and evil.
God mentioned two things that would happen if Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit.
(1) They will know good and evil.
(2) They will die.
Adam and Eve were fully aware that they would die if they ate the forbidden fruit. However, they were tempted to eat it because they want the knowledge of good and evil. This is what the passage only informs us.
Regarding death, they must be aware of this probably through knowledge provided by God. My theory is that Adam and Eve thought that they would not really die even if they ate of the forbidden fruit since they were aware that they also have access to the tree of life (Genesis 2:9). They thought it would be a win-win situation. They would be like God - deciding what morality is and at the same time, living forever. Adam and Eve literally desired to be like God.
The serpent told them that they would be like God if they would eat the forbidden fruit. According to the serpent, disobedience to God will make them like God. In what way would they become like God? Context says that by knowing good and evil. That is, just as God knows good and evil, Adam and Eve will know good and evil. God knows good and evil. He knows what is wrong and right. The will of God is for the humankind to believe in what he thinks is good and evil. Therefore, Adam and Eve wanted to establish their own definition of morality. They did not want God to rule over them in regards to how to live their lives. They wanted independence from God. Is this correct?
Why did Adam and Eve risk eating the forbidden fruit even when fully aware that they will die if they eat it?