The question has been raised over at Storied Theology, and then picked up here, as to the notion that perhaps Adam was not necessarily the first created human, chronologically, but the first in a line of specifically commissioned representatives of God – a precursor of Israel.
Among the initial responses on both blogs has been to raise Romans 5:12: “Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned …” If in fact Adam was not the first person, but was placed on the earth to righteously govern an already rebellious human race, then how can Paul’s statement to the Romans be true?
I don’t know that I’m quite ready to offer an explanation. But I do believe that the traditional view, that Adam was actually the first human being, has its own issues that need resolving. So today I simply present the other side of the catch-22.
The question is simple, and we’ve all encountered it already. If Adam was the firstborn of humanity, and his initial offspring were Cain and Abel, then of whom is Cain afraid after murdering his brother (Gen 4:14)? Who is Cain going to run into that might want to take his life? The narrative implicitly acknowledges other groups of people that Cain may plausibly encounter and fear, requiring the protection of the Lord.
Anyway, that’s the other side of the dilemma. Have a go.