Five Things You May Not Know about Adam

Jesus is referred to as “the last Adam [who] became a life-giving spirit” (1 Corinthians 15:45). He came to crush the head of the serpent and take away sin. He died as the perfect—sinless—sacrifice for the trespasses we have committed. When we are in Jesus, we are safe. When we die and stand before God at the Judgment, He won’t see a sinful descendent of Adam, but rather a “new creation” in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17).

Adam is one of the best-known people in the Bible. Despite this, most people only know a few basic facts about him. His connection to every person on the planet, and therefore our need for the Gospel, is outlined below, as are five things about Adam you may not have known before.

1. “Adam” Is Grounded in Hebrew

The word Adam can mean a number of things in Hebrew: mankind, man, and a personal name. For example, “Let us make man in our image” (Genesis 1:26) uses the word ‘āḏām (אדם) to mean ‘mankind’ (see also Genesis 5:2). This includes men as well as women, who are both made in God’s image. Later, in Genesis 2:7 we read more specifically about the creation of the first man. In this verse, ‘āḏām is preceded by the definite article hā (ה), akin to the English word ‘the’. This man was formed of the dust of the ground. The Hebrew word for ground is ‘ăḏāmâ (אדמה). So, we learn of the man (hā’āḏām) Adam (‘āḏām), made from the ground (‘ăḏāmâ), who is the first of mankind (‘āḏām). Not only do we see God inspiring some play on words, we also think there can be no “better name for the progenitor of all humanity” than Adam.1

2. Dust of the Ground

We, as indeed are all creatures, are not evolving to become better, we are DEvolving and getting worse.

The Bible records that Adam was specifically made from the dust of the ground before God breathed life into him (Genesis 2:7). The Hebrew word for dust is ʿāp̄ār (עפר, pronounced ‘afar’), which conveys the concept of dry earth. Now, Moses didn’t know about the material composition of the human body, or what elements were. Yet, he specifically recorded this detail when compiling the book of Genesis around 3,500 years ago. Today we are able to identify the elements that make up the human body, which can all be found in the dust of the ground. When we die and decompose, we do exactly what the Bible teaches: our bodies return to dust (Genesis 3:19).

Of course, just like baking a designer cake, the right ingredients must not only be present at the right time and in the right quantities, but they also need to be put together with purposeful design and complex organization. It is because God has done this and given mankind reason, intelligence, and consciousness that we have the ability to communicate, to love, perform complex mathematics, to produce beautiful artwork, and to play musical instruments brilliantly. Dust can do none of this, no matter how long you leave it. What we observe of humanity fits the biblical account of creation far better than Darwin’s theory.

3. Men and Women: Same Number of Ribs

Adam didn’t have to spend long in the Garden of Eden on his own. God created for Adam a wife, called Eve. God chose not to create her from the dust of the earth, but rather, from one of Adam’s ribs (Genesis 2:22). Some Bible skeptics have falsely claimed that if this were true, it would mean that “women have one more rib than men”.2 As a result, sometimes they think ‘gotcha’ when they confidently exclaim that men don’t have one rib less than women. Men have exactly the same number of ribs as women—12 pairs.

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