Who did Adam and Eve’s children marry?

β€œIs it allowed in the Bible for brothers to marry their sisters and vice-versa, and if so or not, what did Adam and Eve’s children do (if there was no one else in the world)?”

Anyone have any thoughts to share?


  1. One more thought. I am not down on science or scientists. Science has contributed much to our search for truth, and has rightfully challenged many of the assumptions of religious faith. I am not disagreeing with all that science claims. I simply want to challenge scientists to be honest about their assumptions, to admit that there is an element of blind faith to even what they say, and that not all of their claims are “pure facts”. Evidence can always be twisted, and can lead to multiple conclusions. There ought to be more room for mystery. For what its worth…

  2. Hi abc, thanks for posting your comment. Comments on any post are always welcome!
    re. literal or figurative (or allegorical), I have struggled with the same questions, and bounced back and forth in the past. My present position is a lot more fuzzy, both in regards to biblical and scientific interpretation.

    All evidence (whether biblical or scientific or historic) needs to be interpreted, and as soon as we start interpreting, we run the huge risk of assuming certain things. One major assumption is the question of God. Is it possible for God to miraculously sustain Jonah in the belly of the large fish. Whether or not it happened, the underlying question is, “is it possible”. Most scientists rule it out altogether. But can that assumption be proved scientifically. Can we prove scientifically that (a) there is no God, and if there is a God, that (b) God cannot miraculously sustain Jonah in the belly of the large fish. These are out of the realm of science (or physics) and belong to metaphysics.

    It takes faith in either case. I think that scientists too quickly rule out the possibility that a biblical story is literal; and I think that biblical literalists too quickly rule out the possibility that a biblical story is figurative. Where does this leave me? I choose to give God (and the Bible) the benefit of the doubt. It is always possible that a story the Bible presents is true (ie historical), and since we can never prove it impossible, I work from that assumption. But I also explore the symbolic, figurative aspects of the story, for the Bible often demonstrates that the stories have bigger or deeper symbolic meaning.

    You are right, much of what the Bible presents doesn’t seem to make sense. But there is truth in the expression (not sure who said it): TRUTH IS STRANGER THAN FICTION. Sometimes what actually happens is more bizarre than anything that could have been imagined. Again, it does take an open-minded faith to believe in many of the Bible stories. But keep in mind that behind the bold confidence of science that their “truth claims” are all scientifically verifiable, remember that the basic presuppositions behind what they say are unprovable:
    “Only that which can be scientifically verified is true.” Prove it!
    “There is no God.” Prove it!
    “Miracles never happen.” Prove it!
    “Only matter is real.” Prove it!
    “God could not have sustained Jonah in the belly of a fish.” Prove it!

    Suggestion… Keep an open mind, don’t be so quickly drawn in by simplistic biblical literalism. But at the same time, don’t be so quickly drawn in by simplistic scientific literalism. The “ample scientific evidence” is not as incontrovertible (impossible to dispute, unquestionable) as is often claimed.

    Just my thoughts, open to feedback.

  3. Although I am along-time member of Hope Church, I have only recently started to visit this website. This question caught my interest and even though it was posted some time ago, I hope it will still be OK to comment. After some years of study and reflection, I have come to believe that the Bible is more allegorical than I was traditionally taught. A prime example of allegory would be the story of Jonah. There is ample scientific evidence regarding the age of the universe and the earth, evolution of life forms, etc. that has made me conclude that the Genesis stories are to be taken figuratively, not literally. The Bible does not make sense to me any other way. Therefore, this question is not an issue for me.

  4. The short answer is that Adam and Eve’s children married each other. Tony’s answer above is a simple summary of the standard Christian answer to this question. One observation that I read was that if Adam and Eve were the first parents, then we are ALL blood-relatives, though distantly removed. I did find some interesting and helpful thoughts at http://www.ChristianAnswers.net (type in “Cain” and “wife”).

    Is there another question related to this? I assume you were wondering about the incest issue, and whether the Bible contradicts itself (some people would say that it does). Tony is right (above) that the explicit command against incestuous relationships does not come out until later in the law of Moses.

    (From ChristianAnswers) “Many people immediately reject the conclusion that Adam and Eve’s sons and daughters married each other by appealing to the law against brother-sister intermarriage. Some say that you cannot marry your relation. Actually, if you don’t marry your relation, you don’t marry a human! A wife is related to her husband even before they marry because all people are descendants of Adam and Eve β€” all are of “one blood.” The law forbidding marriage between close relatives was not given until the time of Moses (Leviticus 18-20). Provided marriage was one man to one woman for life (based on Genesis 1 and 2), there was no disobedience to God’s law originally when close relatives (even brothers and sisters) married each other.

    Remember that Abraham married his half-sister (Genesis 20:12). God blessed this union to produce the Hebrew people through Isaac and Jacob. It was not until some 400 years later that God gave Moses laws that forbade such marriages.”

    Hope this helps. Please ask if you have a follow up question!

  5. The Bible states that Adam was the first man. God did not start the world by a group of men. God’s Word also states that Eve was the first woman since she was the mother of all nations. The Bible also states that there was no mate for Adam, until the Lord created his helpmate. They both lived many years πŸ™‚ and had many children, being fruitful and multiplying πŸ™‚ Brothers did marry their sisters in the beginning. Even Abraham married his half sister. Marriage was to be with one wife. The law forbidding marriages of close relatives was not given until the time of Moses. The possiblities of genetic deformities greatly increased over time.

    Thank You Lord for Your Word. May we use it to formulate our thoughts about the issues of life. May our daily living for Jesus be founded upon that Word,

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