Life is a series of auditions for the role of God.
The serpent induced Adam and Eve to abdicate paradise for godlessness by conjuring up an illusion. They fell for the illusion. The serpent conjured up the illusion that a life lived as gods in godlessness was superior to a life lived with God in paradise. They took the better deal. Unfortunately, the serpent was a liar and godlessness is not superior to paradise. To make sure that this won't happen again - that the children of Adam and Eve won't repeat the mistake of their parents (original sin) - God allows us to stew briefly in the sourness of godlessness. The taste prevents us from abdicating paradise for godlessness after the gift of paradise is delivered to us. The prodigal son will never return to the pig sty and neither will the children of Adam and Eve.
Moreover, while we are in godlessness, God gives us the opportunity to play the role of God in our relationships with our neighbors. Adam and Eve had abdicated paradise for godlessness themselves to play the role of god. The golden rule holds that we ought to do onto others what we would want them to do to us. This is a bastardization of the golden rule. A better version of the golden rule is to do onto your neighbors what you want your God to do for you (Matthew 18:21-35).
Many times during our lives we enter into a superior - inferior relationship with your neighbors. Such situations are tests that God gives us. They are opportunities to act like God acts to our neighbors. Do you pass the tests? Or do you fail them? Do you show God to your neighbors? Or do you show someone else?