One of the greatest questions of all time has been answered by an article at the website of Answers in Genesis (AIG), the creationist ministry of Ken Ham (ol’ Hambo) — the ayatollah of Appalachia, the world’s holiest man who knows more about religion and science than everyone else. The article is titled Cain’s Wife, and it seems to be Chapter 6 in a book. Anyway, Hambo wrote the thing. It originally appeared in September of 2007, before your Curmudgeon began this humble blog, so we missed it the first time around. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis, and occasional Curmudgeonly interjections that look [like this]:
Skeptics of the Bible [Hell-bound fools!] have used Cain’s wife time and again to discredit the book of Genesis as a true historical record. Sadly, most Christians have not given an adequate answer to this question. We don’t even know her name, yet she was discussed at the Scopes Trial, mentioned in the movies Inherit the Wind and Contact, and talked about in countries all over the world for hundreds of years.
Well, who was she? Hambo says:
For instance, at the historic Scopes Trial in Tennessee in 1925, William Jennings Bryan, the prosecutor who stood for the Christian faith, failed to answer the question about Cain’s wife posed by the ACLU lawyer Clarence Darrow. Consider the following excerpt from the trial record as Darrow interrogates Bryan:
Q—Did you ever discover where Cain got his wife?
A—No, sir; I leave the agnostics to hunt for her.
Q—You have never found out?
A—I have never tried to find.
Q—You have never tried to find?
Q—The Bible says he got one doesn’t it? Were there other people on the earth at that time?
A—I cannot say.
Q—You cannot say. Did that ever enter your consideration?
A—Never bothered me.
After that nifty dialog, Hambo tells us:
The world’s press was focused on this trial, and what they heard has affected Christianity to this day — Christians can’t defend the biblical record! [Gasp!] In recent times, this same example was taken up by Carl Sagan in his book Contact (which was on the New York Times best-seller list) and used in the movie of the same name based upon this work.
Sounds like a huge problem. Hambo elaborates further:
Many skeptics have claimed that for Cain to find a wife, there must have been other “races” of people on the earth who were not descendants of Adam and Eve. To many people, this question is a stumbling block to accepting the creation account of Genesis and its record of only one man and woman at the beginning of history. Defenders of the gospel must be able to show that all human beings are descendants of one man and one woman (Adam and Eve) because only descendants of Adam and Eve can be saved. Thus, believers need to be able to account for Cain’s wife and show clearly she was a descendant of Adam and Eve.
So what’s the answer? Skipping an ark-load from Hambo’s long article, he explains:
Since the Bible describes all human beings as sinners, and we are all related (“And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth,” Acts 17:26), the gospel makes sense only on the basis that all humans alive and all that have ever lived (except for the first woman ) are descendants of the first man Adam. If this were not so, then the gospel could not be explained or defended.
Cain’s wife was a descendant of Adam? Really? Hambo says yes:
She couldn’t have come from another race of people and must be accounted for from Adam’s descendants.
Scripture doesn’t tell us how many children were born to Adam and Eve, but considering their long life spans (Adam lived for 930 years — Genesis 5:5), it would seem logical to suggest there were many. Remember, they were commanded to “be fruitful, and multiply” (Genesis 1:28).
If we now work totally from Scripture, without any personal prejudices or other extrabiblical ideas, then back at the beginning, when there was only the first generation, brothers would have had to marry sisters or there wouldn’t have been any more generations!
Hambo’s article (or chapter) goes on and on for a few more pages, but that’s the bottom line, so to speak. Cain’s wife was his sister, or possibly a niece. That’s how it was in the Garden of Eden, and we’re told it was paradise.
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