In the beginning when God created the first two people, Adam and Eve, they had intimate friendship and fellowship with God and lived in a paradise called the Garden of Eden. They were innocent and guilt free having never committed any kind of wrong doing and God actually walked among them. They were free of fear, blame, worry, regret and any other undesirable emotion that people experience now. We can only imagine what it might have been like to live in such a paradise. In this paradise, there was only one law; there was a certain tree whose fruit Adam and Eve were forbidden to eat. Unfortunately, Adam and Eve chose to eat the fruit of this tree violating God's law. Breaking God's law revealed that Adam and Eve had stopped trusting in God and everything was about to change.
The implication from the Bible is that had they remained obedient, they would have lived forever in the Garden of Eden enjoying God's fellowship. God had warned them that the consequences of eating from this tree would be death. God gave them the ability to choose and they chose the path of disobedience. They were expelled from their garden paradise to prevent them from eating from the Tree of Life. Access to the fruit of this tree would have resulted in them living forever in a condition of broken trust and disobedience to God. Now they would grow old and die.
Breaking God's laws results in separation from Him
The Bible teaches us that our wrong doing separates us from God. We can see this vividly demonstrated in the account of Adam and Eve. You can read the full historical record of the account in the first three chapters of the book of Genesis. The prophet Isaiah said, "But your iniquities have separated you from your God; And your sins have hidden His face from you, So that He will not hear" (Isaiah 59:2). Furthermore, the Bible also teaches us that when we do wrong, we "earn" death (Romans 6:23). God still loved Adam and Eve as much as ever, but they had turned away from Him and the communion they enjoyed before was no longer possible.
Today, we are also separated from God
Just like Adam and Eve, we all choose to disobey God. Why this is true no one knows for sure. Contrary to popular opinion, the Bible does not teach that we are born pre-programmed to disobey God. The Bible simply states that we "all have done things that are wrong and are continually falling behind and in need of glory from God" (Romans 3:23). In another passage from the book of Isaiah we learn that "We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way..." (Isaiah 53:6). The Bible doesn't say why we disobey God, it just states factually that we all fail Him.
Our disobedience to God's ways causes us to be out of fellowship with Him just like Adam and Eve. Just like them we will also die because death is the ultimate punishment that our disobedience brings upon us. In our present condition, eternal life in friendship with God is out of the question.
Can we escape our death penalty?
There is a price that must be paid when we do wrong; that price is eternal death. But, God is merciful. Because God loves us, He has provided a way for us to be reconciled to Him and avoid our death penalty. If we take advantage of His reconciliation we will be granted fellowship with Him. We'll still experience death, but for those who have been reconciled to Him, He has promised to one day raise us from the dead nevermore to die. The reconciled have been promised an eternal and immortal future with Him. Yes, we can escape the penalty of eternal death.