The Bible – What Adam Did Next

Noahs Ark 12

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But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.

In the first part, we saw how God placed temptation in the way of Adam and Eve, and then punished them when they fell for it.  I think that this was the first “dick move” God perpetrated on mankind.  Over the coming books we will see how he refines this.

When I was at school, as soon as we knew the meaning of the word “knew” in the Bible, much hilarity ensued.  Especially if someone used the word innocently.  Simpler times.  Anyway, Genesis 4:1 Adam knows Eve and she has a son and they call him Cain.  He then knows her again and they have Abel.  Abel is a shepherd and Cain is a farmer.  They both work hard and present the Lord with their offerings: Abel gives a sheep because he is a sheep herder and Cain hands over the fruits of his work.  Two men giving honestly and without malice.  And the Lord, who apparently knows everything (including your inner most thoughts) goes absolutely crazy over Cain’s offering and, though I wasn’t there at the time, probably insults him.  Dick move number 2 really, if we only count the whole of the Garden of Eden story as one big dick move.  As God says:

4:6 And the LORD said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen?

4:7 If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.

So, Cain is a farmer and presents the offerings of a farmer and God seems to think this is a problem.  Cain is showing his God what he has produced and this is thrown back at him.  Well, thinks Cain, see how you like this!  And he kills Abel.  Which seems perfectly rational and reasonable.  So God punishes Cain by driving him out of wherever they live and makes him go to the east to Nod.  And to show Cain how furious he is with him, he makes it so no one can hurt him.  That is Cain well and truly schooled!!

Somehow Cain finds and wife and he knows her and she gives birth to Enoch.  So Cain builds a city and calls it Enoch.  Which is a nice present for his first born.  The question of where these other people come from has been raised numerous times elsewhere, so I won’t ask it here.  But it is a worry.  And who is the city of Enoch for?

The first of many lists is written so that we can see the line of descendants.  Not going over it here as nobody ever cares about lists.  They are probably in there so that someone can claim to be of the line of Cain and this is their way of showing it.  Or something.

And while Cain and his sons are knowing their wives, Adam is back reacquainting himself with Eve.  And Seth is born.  And then Seth fathers Enos.  I read somewhere that in the Judaic religion there are 2 Messiahs, a worldly one and a spiritual one.  I wonder if this is the start of it, with Enos being the spiritual one and one of Cain’s descendants being the worldly one.  I only ask because the final line in Chapter 4 is that after Enos is born, “then began men to call upon the name of the LORD”.

Genesis 5, big long list of who was who’s father.  All of these people apparently did nothing of worth except to live long lives and then father sons. Who also lived long lives and fathered sons.  And so on.  But some bits are interesting, all the same.  Mainly because they all came late to fatherhood and Cain and Abel have now been removed from the record.  Adam, for example, was 130 when Seth was born and he live for another 800 years.  This list appears to be a way to confirm that Noah (at the bottom of chapter 5) is a direct descendant of Adam (top of chapter 5).  Something tells me that this was necessary – possibly a land claim or a title claim?

Speaking of Noah…  According to chapter 6, there were giants on the Earth and (possibly) angels were off having sex and children with mortal women.  It’s not made clear why, but all the people on Earth had lots of evil and wickedness in their heads.  So God decided that the only fix was to kill everyone.  In fact, he was so mad, he decided to kill everything – humans, animals, fish, insects, everything.  But he decided to spare Noah and his family because they weren’t naughty.  Skipping over the building of the ark, we get two different stories of which animals were put onto the ark:

Genesis 6:19-20 (my emphasis)

6:19 And of every living thing of all flesh, two of every sort shalt thou bring into the ark, to keep them alive with thee; they shall be male and female.

6:20 Of fowls after their kind, and of cattle after their kind, of every creeping thing of the earth after his kind, two of every sort shall come unto thee, to keep them alive.

Genesis 7:2-3 (my emphasis)

7:2 Of every clean beast thou shalt take to thee by sevens, the male and his female: and of beasts that are not clean by two, the male and his female.

7:3 Of fowls also of the air by sevens, the male and the female; to keep seed alive upon the face of all the earth.

These parts are right next to each other, but they are contradictory.  Again, this is supposed to have been dictated by God, yet he seems a bit hazy on the details.  By the end of chapter 7, the whole world is under water and Noah and family are floating around on the top.  After almost a year, they land and Noah sacrifices one of every clean animal.  Luckily they had 7 of each, so one was clearly a spare.

Afterwards, God makes a rainbow.  Which is nice.  In a move which should not surprise us now, and will not surprise us when other people do it, Noah does a dick move on his son Ham, who is now the ruler of Canaan.  You see, Noah gets drunk on his own wine and falls asleep naked.  His two sons, Shem and Japheth, see this and cover him with a blanket – walking backwards so as not to see their father’s naughty bits.  Even though they saw that he was naked first.  When Noah awakes, he instantly knows who was responsible for the blanket and decides that Canaan (in the person of Ham) should be their servant.  Because Ham didn’t help you see, even though he may have had no idea that his pissed dad was a nudist.  If any of this seems reasonable to you, please get help.

And at the end of chapter 9, Noah is 950 years old and then dies.  And God promised not to kill everyone ever again.

Because Chapter 10 is just a list of the children of Ham, Shem and Japheth, we will not be reading it.  So we’ll hit Genesis Chapter 11 next time.

Dramatis Personae:

  • God
  • Adam
  • Eve
  • Cain
  • Abel
  • Seth
  • Enoch
  • Enos
  • Noah
  • Shem
  • Ham
  • Japheth
  • Giants!
  • All the clean and unclean animals and birds in the whole world
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Posted on 2 February, 2010, in The Bible-Readalong and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 15 Comments.

  1. Aren't those tags a *little* over the top for the post?
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  2. His blog, he can tag how he likes, so get over it! 😉
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  3. I assume you're familiar with Eddie Izzard on the Noah's Ark story?

    "I am an evil giraffe!" 😉

    • Yes I have and it was brilliant. I also had to stop myself from nicking his routine because it was both hilarious and to the point. Watch the video here and laugh. He's a very funny atheist comedian. To paraphrase him: atheists have years and years of science and peer reviewed experiments to explain the world. The religious have … a book.
      My recent post The Bible – What Adam Did Next

  4. Not bad, but I fail to see how being reprimanded by God gives Cain the right to kill his brother. I've been told of by my dad heaps of times and sometimes it was my brothers fault. I never went and killed him?

    It's quite possible that Able's offering was better as he presented the firstling of the flock with the fat therof, something that is done throughout the Bible in regards to paying homage and stuff. Yet Cain just presented some fruit. Didn't say anything about the first fruits or anything so perhaps the ones he selected weren't too crash hot.

    • "Reasonable Response" is going to come up a lot in the rest of the OT, so I'll leave off until we get a few more people's stories. 🙂

      How would Cain know which are the "first fruit"? And the whole thing was to present their labours and offer them to God. Nowhere does it say that Cain did livestock, so it is reasonable to assume that all those grains and fruits (or whatever he provided) was a fair sample of his labours.

      And another thing, since God appeared to more directly involved with His creations then, why did He let all that happen? Why not tell Cain to do something other than arable farming? Is it that God likes blood more than muesli? 🙂
      My recent post The Bible – What Adam Did Next

      • No way of knowing since we weren't there. Quite possible that he handed bruised fruit that he picked up off the ground rather than selecting the best of the crop.

        Also in regards to Noah. I seems quite obvious really. The first passage goes to show that he wants to save all creatures but the second one he instructs Noah that he has to take more of the clean animals. Seeing as how they are not allowed to eat of the unclean animals, and that God knew they were going to be in the Ark for some time, not to mention that it would take some time for the animals to reproduce, one could assume the extra animals were for food.

        • Possibly. Though if it were a crime such as that, you'd expect it to be mentioned. All the Bible tells us is that Cain offered the things he produced.

          As to the Noah stuff, why clarify and do so so ham-handedly? Why not just say "7 clean, 2 unclean"? If it is the case that what was written is not exactly what was said then it should have been edited far more efficiently.
          My recent post The Bible – What Adam Did Next

  5. It was the language of the day I reckon. I listen to some of the younger generation of today and I can't get my head around some of the stuff they come up with and why the say it the way they do.

  6. I believe we should not take the bible literally. I mean, there are hidden "codes" or sort of. So Cain killed his brother Abel, big deal. And Noah survived the great flood. But there are other old literature that depicts the same thing too. So, Obviously there are other survivors during that time. It is just the bible, was talking about the incident. Anyway, looking forward to read some of your similar blogs.

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  7. "Now Abel kept flocks, and Cain worked the soil. In the course of time Cain brought some of the fruits of the soil as an offering to the LORD. But Abel brought fat portions from some of the firstborn of his flock."

    As to Cain, he did not bring his best. God just showed disappointment. He didn't even punish him. And then Cain goes and kills his brother. So glad most kids don't behave like that today.

    cd :O)
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    • This is me calling bollocks on that. I challenge you to go now to a field of grain and pick me only the best grain and do not spoil the rest of the harvest. Now do the same with potatoes. And then tell me how easy it is.

      God set Cain up to fail.
      My recent post The Bible – Sod ‘Em

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