Read 5.) Genesis 4:1-26. An ancient objection to the Bible goes, Where did Cain get his wife? The ancient answer is: Why are you so interested in another man’s wife? Actually, there is a real answer. But, first, Adam and Eve had been expelled from the Garden, and then started their family. Cain was their first-born and then came Abel. We immediately move ahead to where Cain was a farmer and Abel a shepherd. Since meat was not yet being eaten, the flocks could only have been for fiber and skins, primarily for clothing, but also for sacrifice. Because Abel and his sacrifice were accepted, while Cain and his sacrifice were not; in a fit of rage, Cain killed his brother. What we are not told is, a.) how many years have gone by, and, so, how old were they, and b.) whether there were any other people besides Adam, Eve, Cain and Abel? Ah, but the truth is, we are told! Look to 4:25. Seth had been born to Adam and Eve in the place of Abel. 5:3 says that Seth was born when Adam was 130. If Seth was the next born after Cain killed Abel, and Adam was 130… since Adam and Eve had been expelled from the Garden long before, it stands perfectly to reason that Cain and Abel were well into their 120’s at the time of this incident… and since 5:4 states that Adam and Eve had many other sons and daughters, Cain would have had to have taken a younger sister as his wife, of which there would have been many by this time. No contradiction exists whatsoever, and a perfectly reasonable and rational answer does exist. Case solved, and not the least bit of violence has been done to the scriptures!
Further, who would Cain have been afraid of, as 4:13+14 tell us? And, the answer would be the same. Cain had many younger brothers and sisters who would have wanted to take vengeance upon Cain for killing their older brother Abel. They would have known who he was, and so, Cain’s fear was equally justifiable. So, what is the meaning or purpose of 4:18 thru 24? The answer to this question is far more meaningful than where did Cain get his wife. It’s found in 4:16. Cain went out from the Lord’s presence, and beget offspring who knew nothing of the Lord. The result was a line of unbelievers from Cain, thru Enoch, Irad, Mehulael, Methushael to Lamech. Six generations of unbelievers, and the result was a murderer who boasted in his ‘exploit’! If Cain begat an ungodly line; the point of 4:25, thru all of chapter 5, is of how that Adam begat Seth, and thru Seth, a godly line followed, and how important that was for what we will be reading of next, when we come to Noah’s Flood. So far, everything has had to do with the first 3 of The 10 Essential Elements of The Real Bible Message; those being 1.) righteousness, 2.) sin, and 3.) judgment. It’s what the Book is all about!
Harold F Crowell