Today, the first Friday of the Fast, we hear about the tree in the Garden during the Old Testament readings. We will be celebrating another tree on the last Friday of the Fast. St. John Chrysostom tells us that the same symbols of defeat became later the symbols of our victory: virgin, tree and death.
In the Garden of Eden Eve had not yet known Adam at the time of the Fall. The tree is the tree of knowledge of good and evil and death was the result of their disobedience to God’s command.
In the New Testament, the virgin is the Most Holy Theotokos, the Virgin Mary; the Cross is the tree and Death was defeated using these same means by which it entered creation.