By: St. Theophilus of Antioch
It was not that the tree of knowledge contained anything evil, but that through disobedience man acquired pain, suffering and sorrow, and finally fell victim to death. And in so doing, God conferred a great benefit upon the human being. He did not let him remain for ever in a state of sin, so that through this punishment he might expiate his sin in a fixed period of time and after chastisement might later be recalled.
Theophilus of Antioch To Autolcycus 2.25-26. Ed. and trans. R. M. Grant, OECT (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1970).