Re: "Federal" head of the human race

From: Dick Fischer <>
Date: Sun Feb 15 2004 - 23:41:20 EST

Bill Hamilton wrote:

>Some time ago Roy Clouser (I believe it was Roy) wrote a paper in PSCF in
>which he postulated that Adam and Eve were commissioned as missionaries to
>tell the rest of the human race about God. I believe that because Adam
>had the role of telling the human race about God, he in a sense became
>their spiritual father. The fly in this ointment (one of them) is that
>Scripture says Adam called his wife Eve because she was the mother of all
>living. While I can see calling Adam the spiritual father of humans
>because the revelation of God came through him, calling Eve the mother
>seems a bit of a stretch. Does Dick make a similar claim? And how does he
>deal with the Scripture I just (loosely) quoted?

Does this verse signify that all present-day human populations are derived
from Adam? It would if the word "living" was synonymous with Homo
sapiens. But "living" is an adjective, unless it stands in for a noun,
such as "life." Was Eve the mother of all life? The word "life" surely
carves out more territory than the verse intends.

If "living" is an adjective in this verse, it modifies a missing noun. We
could pencil in "men" for the missing noun since we are all men. But why
not pencil in "primates," since we are all primates, or mammals, or
vertebrates? "Men" or Homo sapiens is as arbitrary as any other catch-all

Specifically, in this verse, the Hebrew word chay, translated as "living,"
can be either an adjective or a noun. Used as a noun, it can simply mean
"relatives." In this sense, all of Eve's relatives (Adamites) emanate from
her. By inference, non-Adamites can look elsewhere.

Bruce Waltke takes this tack in Genesis A Commentary: "Adam's naming of
Eve is the beginning of hope. Adam shows his restoration to God by
believing the promise that the faithful woman will bear offspring that will
defeat Satan. While this story is filled with death - judgment on the
serpent, painful labor, conflict of wills - a ray of hope remains in the
promise that the seed of the woman who feels enmity toward the serpent will
defeat the incarnation of evil."

I believe the significance of Genesis 3:20 is that it establishes an
acceptable standard for marriage. By this verse, Adam had no other wives
or concubines.

There is another possible relationship. In the Sumerian poem "Enki and
Ninhursag," one of Enki's sick organs was the rib. A goddess was created
for healing. She was called "Nin-ti", the "lady of the rib." But the
Sumerian ti also means "make live," such that the "lady of the rib, "
through a play on words, came to be identified as the "lady who makes
live." And Eve, who was taken from Adam's rib, was also the mother of life
to the Hebrews, reflecting the Accadian-Sumerian roots of the Genesis

Just keep me on ancient history, Bill, my mind seems to wander a bit when
we shift from BC to AD. Could it be the admixture of Neanderthal blood in
my eastern European family ancestry?

Dick Fischer - Genesis Proclaimed Association
Finding Harmony in Bible, Science, and History
Received on Mon Feb 16 01:40:25 2004

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