It was a long, long time since the days when God walked with Adam and Eve in the garden of Eden, and things had changed. Everyone forgot about God.
They didn't pray to him anymore.
They didn't care about pleasing him.
All they cared about was themsleves. All they cared about was getting what they wanted when they wanted it. And after a while it didn't matter if anyone had to get hurt to get it.
And the world became a terrible place.
It wasn't safe to go out into the streets anymore. Robbers and bandits would jump on you and take your loaf of bread. And if they beat you up, no one would stop to help. They would just walk by, and maybe take the apple you had in your pocket too. People were lying and cheating - and even killing each other - everywhere. There was no safe place. You weren't even safe in your own bed at night.
God's beautiful world became a mean, awful, scary place to live.
That's what happens when people forget about God.