The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil was the tree in the Garden of Eden that Adam was told, “In the day that you eat from it you will surely die” (Genesis 2:17).
The Pulpit Commentary has a good explanation of this tree: “The prohibition laid on Adam was for the time being a summary of the Divine law. Hence the tree was a sign and symbol of what that law required. And in this, doubtless, lies the explanation of its name. It was a concrete representation of that fundamental distinction between right and wrong, duty and sin, which lies at the basis of all responsibility. It interpreted for the first pair those great moral intuitions, which had been implanted in their natures, and by which it was intended they should regulate their lives. Thus it was for them a tree of the knowledge of good and evil. It brought out that knowledge, which they already possessed into the clear light of definite conviction and precept, connecting it at the same time with the Divine will as its source and with themselves as its end. Further, it was an intelligible declaration of the duty, which that knowledge of good and evil imposed upon them. Through its penalty it likewise indicated both the good, which would be reaped by obedience and the evil, which would follow on transgression.”
The Tree becomes the tool to produce in our conscience right and wrong, good and evil, light and darkness, love and hate, anger and peace, etc. It is designed to give choice. We must choose the way of the Father and obedience to the Father. Without choice there is no love.
“Happy are those who long to be just and good, for they shall be completely satisfied.” Jesus