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Were Adam and Eve the first humans?

An essay donated by Rev. Jim Persinger

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Sponsored link.

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I contend that Adam and Eve were not the first humans on Earth as believed by...well virtually ever Christian and Jew on the planet. Humans were created on the sixth day, God rested on the seventh and created Adam and Eve later.

The reason that the other humans are only vaguely referred to is because the Old Testament, especially Genesis was written for the purpose of establishing God as the creator and supreme being and to provide a genealogy, starting with Adam and Eve, leading up to the birth of Christ. The other humans are simply not important to the story. They are, however, mentioned vaguely as I am about to prove.

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Genesis 1:24-28: 

bulletAnd God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so.
bulletAnd God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good.
bulletAnd God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
bulletSo God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
bulletAnd God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth. 1,2

Compare the highlighted verse above to these:

Genesis 2:8-9:

bulletAnd the LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed.
bulletAnd out of the ground made the LORD God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil.

Genesis 2:15:

bulletAnd the LORD God took the man, and put him into the Garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.

Genesis 2:18-20:

bulletAnd the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.
bulletAnd out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.
bulletAnd Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him.

These verses are important for three reasons:

  1. Humans were created on the sixth day and told to multiply and replenish the earth and to have dominion over the whole earth but Adam and Eve were placed in the Garden of Eden. That was to be their home.
  2. Verses Gen 1:27 -28 says that God created man and woman and told them to multiply. In contrast, verses Gen 2:18 - 20 gives a different account. According to this, Adam was originally meant to be alone. It wasn't until after creating all the animals for Adam to see and name that God created Eve. (BTW, it says he named them, not that he alone had dominion over them, or that he had dominion over them at all. Adam's world was a garden, he had no need for dominion over the world's animal population.) The reason God re-created all the animals of the world for Adam was to find him a help meet.
  3. In verses Gen 1:24 - 28 it states that man was created after the animals. Verses Gen 2:18 - 20 seem to be a direct contradiction unless you realize were reading about two different times, places and people(s).

After terraforming the earth, God put man and animal here and told mankind to be fruitful and replenish the earth. Adam and Eve were placed in the Garden of Eden and had perfect bodies. Had they not sinned, it's likely that they would never have had children, would still be alive today and none (or few) of the rest of the events mentioned in the Bible would have come to pass.

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Genesis 1:31:

bulletAnd God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

Genesis 2:1-4:

bulletThus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them.
bulletAnd on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made.
bulletAnd God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.
bulletThese are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the LORD God made the earth and the heavens,

This is the end of the creation story and the beginning of the lineage of Christ.

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Genesis 2:5-7:

bulletAnd every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and every herb of the field before it grew: for the LORD God had not caused it to rain upon the earth, and there was not a man to till the ground.
bulletBut there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground.
bulletAnd the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

It's well documented scientifically that early mankind were hunter/gatherers, not gardeners or farmers. This is a reference to them, not that there were no humans at all. If all mankind were descended from Adam it's unlikely that the knowledge of such a rudimentary skill as farming would be lost. If however, a separate group of humans, the ones that were told to Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth, were not given the knowledge of farming, there would not be a man to till the ground. The hunter/gatherers that we know of scientifically and this other race of humans spoken of in the Bible are one and the same.

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Genesis 4:13-15:

bulletAnd Cain said unto the LORD, My punishment is greater than I can bear.
bulletBehold, thou hast driven me out this day from the face of the earth; and from thy face shall I be hid; and I shall be a fugitive and a vagabond in the earth; and it shall come to pass, that every one that findeth me shall slay me.
bulletAnd the LORD said unto him, Therefore whosoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold. And the LORD set a mark upon Cain, lest any finding him should kill him.

Who was Cain going to be a fugitive from? Who else was there, outside of Eden, that Cain was afraid might kill him? Who was God protecting him from by giving him the mark? His descendants or the descendants of future siblings? Unlikely. Adam and Eve's future family would have respected Cain's banishment as God's punishment. Retribution wouldn't have entered their minds. As for Cain's descendants, had he not been protected by the mark, he could've simply not had children. No, he was afraid of someone else. It was the other humans that he was being protected from.

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Genesis 4:16-18:

bulletAnd Cain went out from the presence of the LORD, and dwelt in the land of Nod, on the east of Eden.
bulletAnd Cain knew his wife; and she conceived, and bare Enoch: F30 and he builded a city, and called the name of the city, after the name of his son, Enoch.
bulletAnd unto Enoch was born Irad: and Irad begat Mehujael: and Mehujael begat Methusael: and Methusael begat Lamech.

Who was Cain's wife? Except for Eve, no woman is mentioned in the Bible up to this point. It's been argued that he married an unnamed sister. Admitting that there were other humans not mentioned, whether a sister or whomever, just helps me make my point. It's logical that if someone as important as a member of Adam's family is not mentioned, other humans, who were of virtually no importance to the story at hand wouldn't be mentioned either.

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Words for "man" in Genesis:

In Genesis, two different words are translated as "man". (Actually three, but the other usually refers generically to a child or youth)

One being 'iysh {eesh}, Strong's # 0376

Outline of Biblical Usage

1) man

a) man, male (in contrast to woman, female)

b) husband

c) human being, person (in contrast to God)

d) servant

e) mankind

f) champion

g) great man

2) whosoever

3) each (adjective)

The other is 'adam {aw-dawm'}which is the same word as the name Adam

'adam {aw-dawm'} Strong's # 0120

Outline of Biblical Usage

1) man, mankind

a) man, human being

b) man, mankind (much more frequently intended sense in OT)

c) Adam, first man

d) city in Jordan valley

Easton's Bible Dictionary defines Man (as used in Genesis) as:

  1. Heb. 'Adam, used as the proper name of the first man. The name is derived from a word meaning "to be red," and thus the first man was called Adam because he was formed from the red earth. It is also the generic name of the human race. Its equivalents are the Latin homo and the Greek anthropos. It denotes also man in opposition to woman.
  2. Heb. 'ish, like the Latin vir and Greek aner, denotes properly a man in opposition to a woman, a husband; man with reference to excellent mental qualities.

The above highlighted part of the definition gives credence to my theory since the second definition is used exclusively for Adam and his descendants. The first definition is used only when speaking of man or mankind in general or as the proper name for the first man mentioned by name. It's likely that the other humans, as a group, were not as intelligent as Adam and his descendants were, given the fact that they didn't know how to farm. The two distinct words used to denote man or mankind and their usage is strong indication that the Bible is speaking of two different groups of humans.

The name Adam and the word "man" mean the same thing. Adam is the name of the first "man" mentioned by name. The word "man" is used when speaking about mankind in general or as a group. Only when talking about Adam personally is his name used.

The humans of today may be descendants of both Adam and the other race. Cain married into the other race and so did Adam's other descendants. Noah's family was likely of mixed race and since we're descended from them, we are as well.

This research shows a direct connection between scientific data and biblical history. One does not have to contradict the other...they compliment each other. Instead of scientists stating the Bible is wrong and the church dismissing science, we should examine the evidence presented here and agree that both are right.


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  1. All references are taken from the King James Version of the Bible, Strong's Exhaustive Concordance and Easton's Bible Dictionary.
  2. All emphasis (in bold) are by the author.

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Originally posted: 2006-MAR-04
Latest update: 2006-MAR-04
Author: Rev. Jim Persinger

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