The First Family In The World - A Bible study guide on Adam, Eve and their sons

1. MAN, WOMAN, PARADISE AND MARRIAGE Gen.1:26-28 and 2:7-25
3. BYE BYE PARADISE! Gen.3:21-4:12

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© 2021 The Friends of Glad Tidings Bible Studies -

1. MAN, WOMAN, PARADISE AND MARRIAGE Gen.1:26-28 and 2:7-25

NOTE. There are so many questions in this particular Bible study that it may take two sessions to go through it.

  • With whom did God discuss when he was planning the creation of man (26)?
  • What does it mean that the man is made a) “after God’s likeness” and b) “into his image” (27)?
  • What is the difference between man and animal?
  • Why did it take the two sexes – man and woman - to reflect “God’s image” (27)?
  • The creation was given for both man and woman (!) to rule. Critics sometimes blame the exploitation of nature on the Biblical account of Adam and Even being given dominion over it. Is there a way people could have ruled the earth without misusing it (26b, 28b)?
  • What does God’s blessing mean according to verse 28?

    ”The soil of the earth” is ”adama” and ”man” is ”adam” in Hebrew “Eden” means “a place of happiness” and refers to a real geological spot on this earth.

  • Compare verses 2:7 and 1:27. Why do you think God wanted to portray/ depict the creation of man twice: first the two sexes together and then separately?
  • What does it mean, and what consequences does it have, that man is made out of soil of the earth?
  • Compare everyday life of the first couple with our everyday lives (8-9)?
  • What was the tree of life good for? Think of various possibilities.
  • Would not the paradise have been a much better place without “the tree of the knowledge of good and evil”? What was the function of that tree in the lives of the first people?
  • Why did God want to plant these two special trees in the middle of the paradise, rather than in some of its corners?
  • Why must there be a place of temptation also in our lives?

    The exact place of Paradise cannot be determined by these rivers. This does not change/invalidate the fact that the paradise was really situated on this earth.

  • What do you think was the purpose of God for keeping the location of Paradise secret from all later generations (15)?
  • Why was is necessary to
  • “keep and guard” Paradise even at the time when its inhabitants weren’t sinners (15)?
  • The first Bible of the mankind is written in verses 16-17. Where is the law and where is the gospel in this little Bible?

    Naming someone is a very serious business in the Bible. It shows who is in the authoritative position and who is “the head” of whom.
  • Why did God let Adam live some time without a wife?
  • Why is it possible to call naming of the animals the first scientific task or commission of the mankind (19-20)?
  • Why do you think friendship with God, the company of animals and a meaningful work weren’t enough to make Adam happy (20b)?

    18, 21-25.
    The Hebrew word ”help” (ezer) is most commonly used when referring to God’s help (18). The word “companion” means literally “a counterpart”.

    The name woman, “issa” in Hebrew, is formed from the word “is”, man. Adam was allowed to name the woman as he had named the animals It shows that already in the paradise there was this order: man is the head of his wife as God is the head of Christ (1.Cor.11:3).

  • Imagine and discuss how Adam and his woman felt when they saw each other for the first time.
  • What do you think of God’s idea of creating the woman as a suitable help and companion for the man, and not the other way round?
  • Verses 22-25 depict/ describe the first wedding on the earth. What part did God play in this wedding?
  • In verse 24, the Lord proclaims for all coming generations, in which order a marriage must take place. What does it mean in practice that the man has to leave his father and mother before cleaving to his wife?
  • What are the possible impacts on a relationship if the partners don’t publicly leave their parents before starting a new social unit?
  • What does this text say about paperless marriage and polygamy and the like?
  • What is the meaning of the fact that man and woman where not ashamed of being naked in front of each other (25)?
  • When Jesus was asked about divorce he said: “Have you not read that from the beginning the Creator made them male and female. For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and will be united with his wife, and the two will become one flesh? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” (Matth.19:4-6). Why do you think Jesus added the last sentence to the creation story?
  • What do these words of Jesus say about homosexual partnership?

    THE GOSPEL: The marriage is such a wonderful thing in the eyes of God that he even uses it as a prototype of his relation to his people. The Lord is the bridegroom/ husband and Israel/ the church is his bride. The love of the Lord to his bride is so great that he was willing to suffer and die for her (Epf.5:25-27). In fact, the whole Bible ends up with the wedding of the Lamb where those two finally become “one flesh” and their happiness goes on forever and ever.

    © 2021 The Friends of Glad Tidings Bible Studies -


    BACKGROUND INFORMATION: The Bible does not actually reveal us the origin of evil. We get the first glimpse of it in this text: he is the adversary of God who comes to this world in the form of a snake. Notice that the serpent was not a disgusting reptile as may consider it today but a stately animal. God had given his Word to the man who had passed it on to his woman (2:16-17), but the serpent started ridiculing and attacking that Word.

    The origin of evil
  • Why do you think the Bible does not reveal us the exact origin of evil?
  • When you look at verse 1, which of these three explanations do you consider as the best:
    • a) God and Satan have both always existed.
    • b) Both good and evil came from God.
    • c) God made Satan as a good angel, but he fell into sin and changed into an evil creature. Give your reasons to your answer.

  • What happens to a Christian who starts to consider evil as one of God’s qualities, sort of his “dark side”?

    The serpent and the woman
  • Why didn’t the serpent turn first to Adam, the head of the family?
  • Where did the woman get the idea that they shouldn’t even touch the forbidden fruit (3)?
  • In what ways did the serpent try to make the woman doubt God’s word and his love?
  • In which respect/issues did the serpent lie, in which respect/issues did he speak the truth?
  • In which ways do people in our day strive to become like God (5)?
  • Did the woman see the truth about the fruit or was she perhaps mistaken (6)? Give your reasons.
  • Compare your own struggle with sin to the struggle of the first woman. Whose circumstances are harder, whose battle is fiercer?
  • At which point did Adam arrive to the scene (6b)?
  • What does it reveal of Adam that he did not halt/ stop the conversation between his wife and the Snake?
  • Why did the wife want to drag even her husband to the fall with herself?
  • What made Adam grasp the forbidden fruit his wife was offering him?
  • How do you think the forbidden fruit tasted in the mouths of Adam and his wife?
  • What kinds of knowledge and what kinds of experiences belong even today to the sphere of “forbidden fruit” (5-6)?
  • Even when people know that such knowledge and experiences are harmful, why do they still pursue or participate in them?

  • God had threatened that a sinner would “surely die” (2:17). Why didn’t Adam and his wife drop dead at once?
  • What does it mean that “the eyes of Adam and his wife were opened” (7)?
  • Why did nakedness, which had been a positive thing up till then, suddenly become something shameful (7 and 10, cf. 2:25)?
  • What does it show of the man and the woman that they hid themselves from the Lord?
  • Why did God scold the man first, although the woman had locked him into sin (9-11)?
  • What do you think about the answers Adam and his wife gave to their Creator (12-13)?
  • What happened to the great love of the first couple on earth?

  • What were the consequences of the fall a) to Satan and b) to (biological) reptiles (14-15)?
  • Verse 15 has been called the first gospel in the Bible. Try to find as many features as possible what is reveals about the coming Saviour?
  • How do you think would have been the relation between woman and her man on one side, and woman and her child on the other side, had there never been any fall (16)?
  • What was the actual sin of man, and how does it actualize/ materialize/ become visible/ in our day (17a)?
  • How did the fall affect/ what kind of effect did the fall have on creation: animals and plants?
  • Why did the man want to give his wife the name “the mother of all living”, although she had brought death into this world?

    Summarizing questions:
  • What happens to the concept of “God” and to the concept of “man” if the fall is thought to be just a non-historical legend?
  • This question you can answer in your heart: What did this text reveal to you about your relationship to God, Satan and other people?

    THE GOSPEL: “The seed/ offspring of a woman” in verse 15 refers to Jesus, who was born from a virgin. Satan pierced his heels with nails on the cross, but he crushed Satan’s head when he rose from the dead. This is how Jesus repaired everything the fall had broken.

    © 2021 The Friends of Glad Tidings Bible Studies -

    3. BYE BYE PARADISE! Gen.3:21-4:12

    BACKGROUND INFORMATION: This text tells us how blood was first shed on this earth.

  • Why cannot a sinner live in the Paradise (21-24)?
  • What may have been the most difficult thing for the first people when they had to leave the paradise?
  • Why didn’t God let man and woman leave the paradise naked?
  • Why do you think God wanted to make the garments of the first people from/out of animal skin, and not from/ out of plants?
  • What does it mean for us people that it was God, not man, who killed the first animal on earth?
  • How do these words point to Jesus?

    4:1-2. The name Cain resembles the Hebrew verb “to get, to acquire, to create”.
  • Compare the pregnancy and delivery that Eve experienced with pregnancies and deliveries that other women have experienced after her.
  • Compare the translations you have available and choose the best explanation: Why did Eve choose this particular name for his first son?
  • Abel’s name means “breadth, vapour, vanity”. Why did Adam and Eve decide to give such a name to their second son?

    3-5a. These verses depict/ describe the first offerings that human beings made to God. Notice that animals were not eaten before the Flood. God probably showed his acceptance of Abel’s offering by striking it with a fire from heaven. (Cf. 1 King 18:38; 1 Chron. 21:26; 2 Chron.7:1).

  • How did the first family come to the idea that they should give offerings/ sacrifices to the Lord?
  • What did Adam’s sons want to achieve by their offerings/ sacrifices?
  • Sheep were kept for wool at that time, not for meat. How do you think Abel felt when he as the first person in the whole world struck a stone knife through the heart of his lamb?
  • Try to find out the reason, why the Lord was pleased with the lamb but not the grain (4-5a)?
  • The author of the Hebrews answers the previous question like this: By faith Abel offered God a greater sacrifice than Cain, and through his faith he was commended as righteous, because God commended him for his offerings. And through his faith he still speaks, though he is dead. (11:4). Cain also believed God in a way, but what was the difference between the faith of these two brothers?
  • What was and is the most important thing with an offering that people give to God?

  • 5b-7. In verse 7 the word sin (which is in Hebrew feminine gender) has been changed into masculine gender, meaning “the Devil”. Jesus, too, called Satan a murderer (John.8:44).

  • Why was it so difficult for Cain to accept that God was not pleased with his offering (5b-7)?
  • What should Cain have done when he realized that his offering was no pleasing to God/ in God’s eyes?
  • Apply into your own life the Lord’s words in verse 7?

    8-12. Jesus called Abel the first martyr (Matth.23:35).
  • What made the murder of Abel particularly cold-blooded (8)?
  • Compare the sin of Cain with the sin of his parents in Paradise.
  • Why did God ask the question in verse 9a although he already knew the answer?
  • What does Cain’s answer show about him (9b)?
  • What do we learn about the relation between man and earth through verses 10-12?
  • How do you think murders and abortions have affected our own country?
  • What does God’s curse mean in practise according to verses 11-12?
  • What does it mean that Abel “still speaks, although he is dead” (Hebr.11:4b)?
  • How is Abel a prototype of Jesus?

    THE GOSPEL: This text shows us clearly that the only sacrifice which is pleasing in God’s eyes is the blood of Jesus, the Lamb of God. He had to die so that God would be able to dress us with the clothing of righteousness, as he dressed Adam and Eve.

    © 2021 The Friends of Glad Tidings Bible Studies -

    4. THE FAMILY OF ADAM AND EVE Gen.4:13-5:6

    BACKGROUND INFORMATION: It is said in the Hebrews something important about Abel: You have come to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks of something better than Abel’s does (Hebr.12:24).

  • What does the blood of Abel preach to us? What does the blood of Jesus preach to us?

  • What do you think about the answer Cain gave to God’s curse – what does it show of him and his relation to God (13-14)?
  • How can we see that God still loves Cain?
  • Consider various possibilities, what may have been the mark on Cain.
  • What do we know about the place where Cain settled to live?

  • What general observations can you make about the family of Cain?
  • Which parts of human culture originate from Cain’s family?
  • Compare verses 15 and 23-24 and think what kind of function did “the concept of revenge” have in Cain’s family?
  • How does the way of thinking in Cain’s family resemble the entertainment culture of our day/ the old samurai culture in Japan?

    25-26. Remember that human beings became mortals only after the fall.
  • What gave Adam and Eve the strength to bear the consequences of their sins, when one son killed the other, and fled the country afterwards?
  • What did the parents think about their own fall at this point?
  • Adam and Eve had to live for many years only two of them; Seth was born when they were 130 years old (5:3). What do you think was their hope and comfort during that long time?
  • What could be the hope and comfort for the parents of our own day when they see their shortcomings and sins as parents?
  • What did the birth of Seth mean for his parents? Think of as many things as possible.
  • Verse 26b is thought to mark the beginning of regular worship on earth. Why did Adam and Eve start is now, not before and not after?

  • What does it mean that Adam was created in the likeness of God, but Seth was fathered in the likeness of Adam (1,3)?
  • Where did Cain and Seth get wives?
  • What might be the reason for the first people living into such old age?
  • In your opinion, was the life of Adam and Eve happy or unhappy? Give your reasons.

    1.Cor.15:45-49. In these verses Jesus called the second Adam/ the last Adam.
  • What did God need another Adam for?
  • In what ways is Jesus like the first Adam, in what ways is he different from him?
  • In what ways are we all like the first Adam?
  • Why did the second Adam have to die on the cross?
  • When will we become like the second Adam?

    The summary question:
  • Think all these four studies and answer the following question: What was the most important thing you learned about the first family on earth?

    THE GOSPEL: Jesus made a completely new start in the history of mankind. He became another Adam, overcoming Satan’s temptations and resisting a fall into sin. Yet he agreed to suffer the punishment that the first family on earth deserved and as your family deserves.

    © 2021 The Friends of Glad Tidings Bible Studies -