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Jurisdictional parameters of Eden

stetsonstetson Shipmate
edited October 26 in Kerygmania
Somewhere in the first ten minutes of this interview, Billy Graham states that Cain murdered Abel "in the Garden Of Eden", and William F. Buckley does not correct him.

Whereas I've always thought it was pretty well-established that Adam and Eve were forever booted from Paradise immediately after the Fall, and that everything else in the lives of their family happened ouside the garden. And therefore, Graham must have had a bit of brain flatulence there.

However, Genesis 3 does state that, after killing Abel, Cain was banished to the land of Nod, somewhere "east of Eden". Which would seem to indicate that, at the very least, Eden was still regarded by the writers of Genesis as an important reference point.

So, is there some tradition of a) the lands around Eden being considered de facto part of it, or b) Cain and Abel somehow returning there(maybe bribed a few cherubs)?

Or did Graham just eff that one up big time? Admittedly, there would be a maliciously delightful lese-majeste in that, given how central a literal reading of the Fall was to his preaching. Otherwise, I'd say a fairly forgivable lapse.

Genesis 3-4

Comments

  • EutychusEutychus Shipmate
    A brief bit of googling suggests at least one Hebrew scholar puts at least the birth of Cain prior to the expulsion, arguing on the basis that biblical Hebrew doesn't have a past anterior tense ('he had gone') and uses (he claims) a different word order to denote something happening prior to the past narrative.

    But I think this is more likely to be imprecision on the part of Graham. To my mind 'east of Eden' simply means further away from the initial created archetype in a less hospitable environment.

    (Where I live, some locals say j'habite jusqu'à... "I live all the way to [such-and-such a town]" (meaning "on the road to"), which I think must be a calque from Breton. As must be J'étais au lit avec le médecin, "I was in bed with the doctor", i.e. on doctor's orders).
  • I always sort of assumed that Adam and Eve lived to the east of Eden after being expelled from the garden, on the basis that that's where the angel with his flaming sword was stationed. So, saying the Cain moved to the east of Eden is saying that he moved even further from Eden. From a more symbolic view, humanity is depicted as moving further from that initial perfection, further from the paradise where we could walk with God in the cool of the day.
  • EnochEnoch Shipmate
    Eutychus wrote: »
    ... (Where I live, some locals say j'habite jusqu'à... "I live all the way to [such-and-such a town]" (meaning "on the road to"), which I think must be a calque from Breton. As must be J'étais au lit avec le médecin, "I was in bed with the doctor", i.e. on doctor's orders).
    It's just possible you may be right there. I'm not the only person who regards the expression "she's under the doctor", used in the same way, to mean receiving some sort of treatment or medical supervision as a specifically Wenglish one.

  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    Used here, a long way from Wales.
  • stetsonstetson Shipmate
    Thanks for the replies so far. Interesting shadow-cabinet theory on the timeline for the birth of Cain, though I think it's pretty clear we're meant to understand that Abel's murder, at least, took place AFTER the expulsion.
  • I don't know about "big time" -- just a slip. Graham was mortal.
  • In spite of modern use, Eden was more than just the garden. See chapter 2, 8 "Now the Lord God had planted a garden in the east, in Eden; and there he put the man he had formed." I have no doubt this took place outside the garden itself, but as for exactly which land they were living in, ????? It's not like people had hard and fast borders then. And then there's the likelihood that the narrator is back-naming stuff, much as I might do if I said, "X years ago, dinosaurs roamed Missouri..."
  • Does the word "paradise" fit in here? Which old learning (meaning when I was rather younger) told me meant "walled garden" , from Greek, paradeisos.
  • stetsonstetson Shipmate
    mousethief wrote: »
    I don't know about "big time" -- just a slip. Graham was mortal.

    Yes, like I say, probably just brain flatulence. I don't think Graham really believed that the Bible describes the killing of Abel as taking place in the Garden Of Eden.

    But still, as emissions of brain flatulence go, that one's a doozie, given Graham's line of work and thematic concerns.
  • stetsonstetson Shipmate
    In spite of modern use, Eden was more than just the garden. See chapter 2, 8 "Now the Lord God had planted a garden in the east, in Eden; and there he put the man he had formed." I have no doubt this took place outside the garden itself, but as for exactly which land they were living in, ????? It's not like people had hard and fast borders then. And then there's the likelihood that the narrator is back-naming stuff, much as I might do if I said, "X years ago, dinosaurs roamed Missouri..."

    Interesting point, and I was wondering about that specific issue, ie. does Eden extend outside the garden?

    But I'm pretty sure Graham in the interview says "the Garden Of Eden".
  • Lamb ChoppedLamb Chopped Shipmate
    edited October 26
    Well, sure. And I could refer to the park of INSERT CITY HERE, without implying that the city and the park were coterminous. My guess would be that the "land of Eden" was not particularly large as we think of lands nowadays. Not a country, more like a country or river valley.
  • stetson wrote: »
    mousethief wrote: »
    I don't know about "big time" -- just a slip. Graham was mortal.

    Yes, like I say, probably just brain flatulence. I don't think Graham really believed that the Bible describes the killing of Abel as taking place in the Garden Of Eden.

    But still, as emissions of brain flatulence go, that one's a doozie, given Graham's line of work and thematic concerns.

    Dunno. Not seeing the doozy status.
  • TelfordTelford Shipmate
    I reckon that Billy did mess up big time. However I am not a fan of anything prior to Abraham.

    If we follow Genesis, Adam and Eve were banished in chapater 3. Cain and Abel were conceived in chapter 4.

    My question is, " If Adam had not ate the apple, would he and Eve have remained in Eden forever, not producing any children and not starting the human race ? "
  • GalilitGalilit Shipmate
    Or would Eve (alone) have been banished to the East leaving Adam alone to w**k for all eternity?
  • stetsonstetson Shipmate
    mousethief wrote: »
    stetson wrote: »
    mousethief wrote: »
    I don't know about "big time" -- just a slip. Graham was mortal.

    Yes, like I say, probably just brain flatulence. I don't think Graham really believed that the Bible describes the killing of Abel as taking place in the Garden Of Eden.

    But still, as emissions of brain flatulence go, that one's a doozie, given Graham's line of work and thematic concerns.

    Dunno. Not seeing the doozy status.

    Well, let's put it this way. Suppose that a Methodist minister says in an interview that the old name of Istanbul was Alexandria.

    Now, suppose that an Orthodox priest says in an interview that the old name of Istanbul was Alexandria.

    Let's assume that they both know the correct old name of the city, and just had momentary synaptical misfires. They're both mortal, after all.

    Be that as it may, does the second one in any way strike you as being more, shall we say, eyebrow-raising than the first?
  • stetsonstetson Shipmate
    Telford wrote: »
    My question is, " If Adam had not ate the apple, would he and Eve have remained in Eden forever, not producing any children and not starting the human race ? "

    Ahem. Scripture does not specify the type of fruit they ate.

    (I could have opened that with "I hate to be a pedantic jerk", but who would I be kidding! Seriously, though, I did see a long article in either the NYRB or the LRB a while back, about the Fall and its posterity in western culture. The writer, an academic, made that very same mistake.)
  • stetson wrote: »
    mousethief wrote: »
    stetson wrote: »
    mousethief wrote: »
    I don't know about "big time" -- just a slip. Graham was mortal.

    Yes, like I say, probably just brain flatulence. I don't think Graham really believed that the Bible describes the killing of Abel as taking place in the Garden Of Eden.

    But still, as emissions of brain flatulence go, that one's a doozie, given Graham's line of work and thematic concerns.

    Dunno. Not seeing the doozy status.

    Well, let's put it this way. Suppose that a Methodist minister says in an interview that the old name of Istanbul was Alexandria.

    Now, suppose that an Orthodox priest says in an interview that the old name of Istanbul was Alexandria.

    Let's assume that they both know the correct old name of the city, and just had momentary synaptical misfires. They're both mortal, after all.

    Be that as it may, does the second one in any way strike you as being more, shall we say, eyebrow-raising than the first?

    So you're saying Billy Graham has a closer tie to Cain and Abel than other Christians do?
  • Telford wrote: »
    I reckon that Billy did mess up big time. However I am not a fan of anything prior to Abraham.

    If we follow Genesis, Adam and Eve were banished in chapater 3. Cain and Abel were conceived in chapter 4.

    My question is, " If Adam had not ate the apple, would he and Eve have remained in Eden forever, not producing any children and not starting the human race ? "
    If we stick to the order of the records, Genesis 1 includes the instructions to humanity to "be fruitful". That's before the Fall in Genesis 3, and therefore would apply to Adam and Eve in paradise. To not produce children would be to break the instructions that God had given them, and therefore even without eating the forbidden fruit they would have had children.

    [Though, it's clear that Genesis 1 is a different Creation account than Genesis 2 to whatever point you think the story stops being about Adam and Eve and their children]
  • stetsonstetson Shipmate
    edited October 27
    mousethief wrote: »
    stetson wrote: »
    mousethief wrote: »
    stetson wrote: »
    mousethief wrote: »
    I don't know about "big time" -- just a slip. Graham was mortal.

    Yes, like I say, probably just brain flatulence. I don't think Graham really believed that the Bible describes the killing of Abel as taking place in the Garden Of Eden.

    But still, as emissions of brain flatulence go, that one's a doozie, given Graham's line of work and thematic concerns.

    Dunno. Not seeing the doozy status.

    Well, let's put it this way. Suppose that a Methodist minister says in an interview that the old name of Istanbul was Alexandria.

    Now, suppose that an Orthodox priest says in an interview that the old name of Istanbul was Alexandria.

    Let's assume that they both know the correct old name of the city, and just had momentary synaptical misfires. They're both mortal, after all.

    Be that as it may, does the second one in any way strike you as being more, shall we say, eyebrow-raising than the first?

    So you're saying Billy Graham has a closer tie to Cain and Abel than other Christians do?

    Basically, yes.

    Given that Graham is someone who believes in the Fall as laid out in Genesis, AND believes it's the reason our world is the way that it is, AND spends many working hours preaching about that exact narrative, I would think Graham more likely than most to have a perfect memory for which events happened in the garden, and which happened outside of it.

    To re-tool my earlier example...

    The religious life of an untutored Orthodox layman who has never studied theology is as influenced by Constantinople as that of an Orthodox priest. In that sense, they have an equal connection to Constantinople. But I would still consider it more memorable for the priest to botch the name, than for the layman, given the amount of time the priest has likely spent thinking and preaching about that city.
  • TelfordTelford Shipmate
    Telford wrote: »
    I reckon that Billy did mess up big time. However I am not a fan of anything prior to Abraham.

    If we follow Genesis, Adam and Eve were banished in chapater 3. Cain and Abel were conceived in chapter 4.

    My question is, " If Adam had not ate the apple, would he and Eve have remained in Eden forever, not producing any children and not starting the human race ? "
    If we stick to the order of the records, Genesis 1 includes the instructions to humanity to "be fruitful". That's before the Fall in Genesis 3, and therefore would apply to Adam and Eve in paradise. To not produce children would be to break the instructions that God had given them, and therefore even without eating the forbidden fruit they would have had children.

    [Though, it's clear that Genesis 1 is a different Creation account than Genesis 2 to whatever point you think the story stops being about Adam and Eve and their children]

    But in the same chapter 1 there was no forbidden fruit. God said that mankind could eat the fruit of all the trees
    stetson wrote: »
    Telford wrote: »
    My question is, " If Adam had not ate the apple, would he and Eve have remained in Eden forever, not producing any children and not starting the human race ? "

    Ahem. Scripture does not specify the type of fruit they ate.

    (I could have opened that with "I hate to be a pedantic jerk", but who would I be kidding! Seriously, though, I did see a long article in either the NYRB or the LRB a while back, about the Fall and its posterity in western culture. The writer, an academic, made that very same mistake.)

    It's an apple. I have seen the film!!!

  • HedgehogHedgehog Shipmate
    Telford wrote: »
    It's an apple. I have seen the film!!!
    Lots of competition, with such candidates as: apple, grape, fig, pomegranate, wheat (apparently the whole wheat kernel is botanically a fruit), mushroom (of the "magic" variety) and, of course, the ever-popular banana!

    At least, according to the Modern Font of All Knowledge.


  • stetson wrote: »
    mousethief wrote: »
    stetson wrote: »
    mousethief wrote: »
    stetson wrote: »
    mousethief wrote: »
    I don't know about "big time" -- just a slip. Graham was mortal.

    Yes, like I say, probably just brain flatulence. I don't think Graham really believed that the Bible describes the killing of Abel as taking place in the Garden Of Eden.

    But still, as emissions of brain flatulence go, that one's a doozie, given Graham's line of work and thematic concerns.

    Dunno. Not seeing the doozy status.

    Well, let's put it this way. Suppose that a Methodist minister says in an interview that the old name of Istanbul was Alexandria.

    Now, suppose that an Orthodox priest says in an interview that the old name of Istanbul was Alexandria.

    Let's assume that they both know the correct old name of the city, and just had momentary synaptical misfires. They're both mortal, after all.

    Be that as it may, does the second one in any way strike you as being more, shall we say, eyebrow-raising than the first?

    So you're saying Billy Graham has a closer tie to Cain and Abel than other Christians do?

    Basically, yes.

    Given that Graham is someone who believes in the Fall as laid out in Genesis, AND believes it's the reason our world is the way that it is, AND spends many working hours preaching about that exact narrative, I would think Graham more likely than most to have a perfect memory for which events happened in the garden, and which happened outside of it.

    What folly. A man makes a verbal slip and you people are turning it into the religious misstatement of the millenium. Not even close to important, let alone as important as you are making it out.
    The religious life of an untutored Orthodox layman who has never studied theology is as influenced by Constantinople as that of an Orthodox priest. In that sense, they have an equal connection to Constantinople. But I would still consider it more memorable for the priest to botch the name, than for the layman, given the amount of time the priest has likely spent thinking and preaching about that city.

    And a priest who botches the name has made a simple error, not some kind of revelatory once-in-a-million OMG stop-the-presses failure.
  • KwesiKwesi Shipmate
    Maybe Graham doesn't know the bible as well as he claims. He wouldn't be the first fundamentalist to demonstrate a weak grasp if scripture.
  • W HyattW Hyatt Shipmate
    Telford wrote: »
    I reckon that Billy did mess up big time. However I am not a fan of anything prior to Abraham.

    If we follow Genesis, Adam and Eve were banished in chapater 3. Cain and Abel were conceived in chapter 4.

    My question is, " If Adam had not ate the apple, would he and Eve have remained in Eden forever, not producing any children and not starting the human race ? "
    If we stick to the order of the records, Genesis 1 includes the instructions to humanity to "be fruitful". That's before the Fall in Genesis 3, and therefore would apply to Adam and Eve in paradise. To not produce children would be to break the instructions that God had given them, and therefore even without eating the forbidden fruit they would have had children.

    [Though, it's clear that Genesis 1 is a different Creation account than Genesis 2 to whatever point you think the story stops being about Adam and Eve and their children]

    <Bolding mine>

    Not to mention the fact that God had to put a mark on Cain (Gen 4:15) to prevent other people from killing Cain, so there was already a human race.
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    edited November 26
    W Hyatt wrote: »
    Telford wrote: »
    I reckon that Billy did mess up big time. However I am not a fan of anything prior to Abraham.

    If we follow Genesis, Adam and Eve were banished in chapater 3. Cain and Abel were conceived in chapter 4.

    My question is, " If Adam had not ate the apple, would he and Eve have remained in Eden forever, not producing any children and not starting the human race ? "
    If we stick to the order of the records, Genesis 1 includes the instructions to humanity to "be fruitful". That's before the Fall in Genesis 3, and therefore would apply to Adam and Eve in paradise. To not produce children would be to break the instructions that God had given them, and therefore even without eating the forbidden fruit they would have had children.

    [Though, it's clear that Genesis 1 is a different Creation account than Genesis 2 to whatever point you think the story stops being about Adam and Eve and their children]

    <Bolding mine>

    Not to mention the fact that God had to put a mark on Cain (Gen 4:15) to prevent other people from killing Cain, so there was already a human race.

    Not necessarily; within the parameters of the mythological narrative, given the long ages also being ascribed to characters, the Mark of Cain could be insurance against future generations of Adam and Eve's other children killing him centuries later.
  • Ever see The Good Omen? The first episode had a very good rendition of how God planted a garden in a wilderness.

    As I understand the passage about Cain and Abel, Adam and Eve were already banned from Eden into more or less wilderness. They had a family. Their two sons got into a fight, Cain killing Abel, and is then banished into an even worse wilderness.

    Notice how the story seems to have parallels to the story of Abraham and Ishmael and to the story of Esau and Jacob. Then there is also the story of Ham breaking from his father, Noah. Can we also extend it to the parable of the Prodigal Son told by Jesus?
  • yohan300yohan300 Shipmate
    edited November 30
    It seems that not only was Eden in the east, but everything else in Genesis was too:
    • God planted a garden in Eden, in the east
    • the third river is Tigris, which flows east of Assyria.
    • at the east of the garden of Eden he placed the cherubim
    • Cain settled in the land of Nod, east of Eden.
    • the whole earth had one language and the same words. And as they migrated from the east, they came upon a plain in the land of Shinar
    • Lot journeyed eastward
    • Abraham moved on to the hill country on the east of Bethel
    • The field of Ephron in Machpelah, which was to the east of Mamre
    • Abraham sent them away from his son Isaac, eastward to the east country.
    • His sons Isaac and Ishmael buried him...in the field of Ephron son of Zohar the Hittite, east of Mamre,
    • Then Jacob went on his journey, and came to the land of the people of the east.

    Nothing is in the west at all.
  • stetsonstetson Shipmate
    yohan300 wrote: »
    It seems that not only was Eden in the east, but everything else in Genesis was too:
    • God planted a garden in Eden, in the east
    • the third river is Tigris, which flows east of Assyria.
    • at the east of the garden of Eden he placed the cherubim
    • Cain settled in the land of Nod, east of Eden.
    • the whole earth had one language and the same words. And as they migrated from the east, they came upon a plain in the land of Shinar
    • Lot journeyed eastward
    • Abraham moved on to the hill country on the east of Bethel
    • The field of Ephron in Machpelah, which was to the east of Mamre
    • Abraham sent them away from his son Isaac, eastward to the east country.
    • His sons Isaac and Ishmael buried him...in the field of Ephron son of Zohar the Hittite, east of Mamre,
    • Then Jacob went on his journey, and came to the land of the people of the east.

    Nothing is in the west at all.

    Well, I'm no expert on biblical geography and how it lines up with history, but I do think that, at least in the early OT, the farther west you go, the closer you get to established civilization, right? I mean, go far enough, and you end up in Egypt, which was a pretty "known entity", so to speak.

    LITERALISTS READ THE FOLLOWING AT THEIR OWN RISK

    So maybe the writers of the early OT tended to keep moving things eastward because that was the more uncharted area(from their viewpoint), so it's easy to make up all sorts of crazy and mysterious stuff happening there.
  • stetsonstetson Shipmate
    edited November 30
    And didn't the Egyptians themselves have their Land Of The Dead in the west? At least, I vaguely remember that from Grade 6 Social Studies, and people also said it's alluded to in Stairway To Heaven.
  • I suppose it depends on where Eden actually was, but for most points in the Bible, the further west you go, the more likely you are to wind up knee deep in the Mediterranean.
  • TelfordTelford Shipmate
    I suppose it depends on where Eden actually was, but for most points in the Bible, the further west you go, the more likely you are to wind up knee deep in the Mediterranean.
    Genesis states that 4 rivers flowed out of Eden They include the Tigris and the Euphrates. That would put it in Eastern Turkey.

  • You go west, you fall in the Mediterranean.
  • TelfordTelford Shipmate
    mousethief wrote: »
    You go west, you fall in the Mediterranean.
    Not from Eastgern Turkey
  • The writers of the OT weren't in eastern Turkey.
  • Gee DGee D Shipmate
    I had imagined it as being to the south-west of Ararat.

    As an aside, we were flying to Europe in the Gulf War and instead of the usual flight, went far north over India, coming out between Teheran and the Caspian Sea. A bit further west we had a magnificent view of Ararat (having seen sunrise on the Himalayas, just outstanding). The plain, foothills and the mountain itself, with a platform very suitable for an ark to come to rest.
  • TelfordTelford Shipmate
    mousethief wrote: »
    The writers of the OT weren't in eastern Turkey.
    Never the less the sources of those two rivers are in Eastern Turkey

  • Telford wrote: »
    I suppose it depends on where Eden actually was, but for most points in the Bible, the further west you go, the more likely you are to wind up knee deep in the Mediterranean.
    Genesis states that 4 rivers flowed out of Eden They include the Tigris and the Euphrates. That would put it in Eastern Turkey.
    Though, Genesis 11 states that the Earth was subject to a massive Flood. As that deposited 1000s of m of sediment to form the rocks of the Grand Canyon, and similar substantial flood deposits elsewhere (and there must have been massive erosion of other features to produce that sediment), the post-Flood geography would have been completely different, and river courses wouldn't survive such a geological catastrophe. The Tigris and Euphrates referenced in Genesis 4 couldn't be the same as the rivers which currently have those names. Eden could have been anywhere, Noah could have drifted thousands of km before coming to rest on Ararat.
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