There is a teaching going around that says that Adam and Eve were not the first humans on the Earth. They were actually created after the first humans. This is based on reading Genesis 1 and 2. In Genesis 1 God makes mankind and tells them to replenish the earth. Then at the beginning of Genesis 2 God rests on the seventh day.
Some time after that day or on that day, God decided to create another human – Adam. Then he created a garden and placed Adam there to take care of it. He created more animals for Adam to name and finally, he created Eve to be a suitable companion to Adam.
This theory matches scientific and evolutionary findings of the different types of humans throughout history (you know – from ape to man). The first set of humans (male and female he created them) were the hominids that anthropology talks about – the hunter/gatherers. They weren’t really mentioned in the Bible because they had no significant role to the story of sin and salvation. This was reserved for the human named Adam because it was him who had sinned and needed redemption.
Replenish the Earth
This teaching usually accompanies the earth being reformed theory because God tells humans to replenish the earth, which means to do something again. This helps with the millions of years old earth theory.
However, is that what the Bible really says. Let’s look at the Hebrew word used for replenish. It is “Male” (maw-lay’) from strong’s #04390. It means “to fill, be full; to be full; fulness, abundance (participle); to be full, be accomplished, be ended; to consecrate, fill the hand; to be filled, be armed, be satisfied; to be accomplished, be ended; to fill; to satisfy; to fulfil, accomplish, complete; to confirm; to be filled; and to mass themselves against.”1
As you can see none of those words means to do something again. It means to do it the first time and complete a task until it is satisfied. So for whatever reason King James’ translators decided the word “replenish” was a better fit there than the actual word “fill.”
My Reading of Genesis 1-2
When I read Genesis 1 and 2 together I don’t get the above theory. After the first few verses in chapter 2 it begins to talk about the history of heavens and earth, which tells me that what is to follow already took place. So I said to myself, “If it already took place then where does the following scripture fit into the previous scripture?”
With that question in mind I rearranged the verses in an attempt to put into chronological order. I am not adding to or taking away. I am using scripture to understand scripture. Below is the way I read the beginning of creation, which doesn’t show any conflict for me. Nor does it say that there were two sets of human beings created. Now this is just my first analysis and is in no wise a thorough study. It is just scriptures. You be the judge. I’ve also included a few other scriptures that speak to particular subjects. All scripture is taken from Complete Jewish Bible.
The Beginning of YHVH’s Way
Wisdom is calling! Understanding is raising her voice! “Listen! I will say worthwhile things; when I speak, my words are right. My mouth says what is true, because my lips detest evil. All the words from my mouth are righteous; nothing false or crooked is in them. They are all clear to those who understand and straightforward to those who gain knowledge.
“ADONAI made me as the beginning of his way, the first of his ancient works. I was appointed before the world, before the start, before the earth’s beginnings. When I was brought forth, there were no ocean depths, no springs brimming with water. I was brought forth before the hills, before the mountains had settled in place; he had not yet made the earth, the fields, or even the earth’s first grains of dust. When he established the heavens, I was there. When he drew the horizon’s circle on the deep, when he set the skies above in place, when the fountains of the deep poured forth, when he prescribed boundaries for the sea, so that its water would not transgress his command, when he marked out the foundations of the earth, I was with him as someone he could trust. For me, every day was pure delight, as I played in his presence all the time, playing everywhere on his earth, and delighting to be with humankind.” ~ Proverbs 8:1, 6-9, 22-31
The Beginning of Creation
Here is the history of the heavens and the earth when they were created. ~ Genesis 2:4a
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was unformed and void, darkness was on the face of the deep, and the Spirit of God hovered over the surface of the water. ~ Genesis 1:1-2
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. All things came to be through him, and without him nothing made had being. ~ John 1:1-3
ADONAI by wisdom founded the earth, by understanding he established the heavens, by his knowledge the deep [springs] burst open and the dew condenses from the sky. ~ Proverbs 3:19-20
Day One: Light & Darkness
Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and God divided the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. So there was evening, and there was morning, one day. ~ Genesis 1:3-5
Day Two: Division of Waters
God said, “Let there be a dome in the middle of the water; let it divide the water from the water.” God made the dome and divided the water under the dome from the water above the dome; that is how it was, and God called the dome Sky. So there was evening, and there was morning, a second day. ~ Genesis 1:6-8
Day Three: Dry Land, Grass, Plants, & Trees
God said, “Let the water under the sky be gathered together into one place, and let dry land appear,” and that is how it was. God called the dry land Earth, the gathering together of the water he called Seas, and God saw that it was good.
God said, “Let the earth put forth grass, seed-producing plants, and fruit trees, each yielding its own kind of seed-bearing fruit, on the earth”; and that is how it was. The earth brought forth grass, plants each yielding its own kind of seed, and trees each producing its own kind of seed-bearing fruit; and God saw that it was good. ~ Genesis 1:9-12
On the day when ADONAI, God, made earth and heaven, there was as yet no wild bush on the earth, and no wild plant had as yet sprung up; for ADONAI, God, had not caused it to rain on the earth, and there was no one to cultivate the ground. Rather, a mist went up from the earth which watered the entire surface of the ground. ~ Genesis 2:4b-6
So there was evening, and there was morning, a third day. ~ Genesis 1:13
Day Four: Luminaries – Sun, Moon, & Stars
God said, “Let there be lights in the dome of the sky to divide the day from the night; let them be for signs, seasons, days and years; and let them be for lights in the dome of the sky to give light to the earth”; and that is how it was. God made the two great lights – the larger light to rule the day and the smaller light to rule the night – and the stars. God put them in the dome of the sky to give light to the earth, to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness; and God saw that it was good. So there was evening, and there was morning, a fourth day. ~ Genesis 1:14-19
Day Five: Living Creatures in Water & Birds
God said, “Let the water swarm with swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth in the open dome of the sky.” God created the great sea creatures and every living thing that creeps, so that the water swarmed with all kinds of them, and there was every kind of winged bird; and God saw that it was good. Then God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful, multiply and fill the water of the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.” So there was evening, and there was morning, a fifth day. ~ Genesis 1:20-23
Day Six: Living Creatures on Land & Humankind
God said, “Let the earth bring forth each kind of living creature – each kind of livestock, crawling animal and wild beast”; and that is how it was. God made each kind of wild beast, each kind of livestock and every kind of animal that crawls along the ground; and God saw that it was good. ~ Genesis 1:24-25
Creation of Mankind
Then God said, “Let us make humankind in our image, in the likeness of ourselves; and let them rule over the fish in the sea, the birds in the air, the animals, and over all the earth, and over every crawling creature that crawls on the earth.” ~ Genesis 1:26
Then ADONAI, God, formed a person [Hebrew: adam] from the dust of the ground [Hebrew: adamah] and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, so that he became a living being. ~ Genesis 2:7
So God created humankind in his own image; in the image of God he created him: 1:27a
In him was life, and the life was the light of mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not suppressed it. This was the true light, which gives light to everyone entering the world. John 1:4-5, 9
The Garden in Eden
ADONAI, God, planted a garden toward the east, in Eden, and there he put the person whom he had formed. Out of the ground ADONAI, God, caused to grow every tree pleasing in appearance and good for food, including the tree of life in the middle of the garden and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
A river went out of Eden to water the garden, and from there it divided into four streams. The name of the first is Pishon; it winds throughout the land of Havilah, where there is gold. The gold of that land is good; aromatic resin and onyx stone are also found there. The name of the second river is Gichon; it winds throughout the land of Kush. The name of the third river is Tigris; it is the one that flows toward the east of Ashur. The fourth river is the Euphrates.
ADONAI, God, took the person and put him in the garden of Eden to cultivate and care for it. ADONAI, God, gave the person this order: “You may freely eat from every tree in the garden except the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. You are not to eat from it, because on the day that you eat from it, it will become certain that you will die.” ~ Genesis 2:8-17
So from the ground ADONAI, God, formed every wild animal and every bird that flies in the air, and he brought them to the person to see what he would call them. Whatever the person would call each living creature, that was to be its name. So the person gave names to all the livestock, to the birds in the air and to every wild animal. But for Adam there was not found a companion suitable for helping him. ~ Genesis 2:19-20
Creation of Woman
ADONAI, God, said, “It isn’t good that the person should be alone. I will make for him a companion suitable for helping him.” ~ Genesis 2:18
Then God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the person; and while he was sleeping, he took one of his ribs and closed up the place from which he took it with flesh. The rib which ADONAI, God, had taken from the person, he made a woman-person; and he brought her to the man-person. The man-person said, “At last! This is bone from my bones and flesh from my flesh. She is to be called Woman [Hebrew: ishah], because she was taken out of Man [Hebrew: ish].” This is why a man is to leave his father and mother and stick with his wife, and they are to be one flesh. They were both naked, the man and his wife, and they were not ashamed. ~ Genesis 2:21-25
Male and female he created them. God blessed them: God said to them, “Be fruitful, multiply, fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea, the birds in the air and every living creature that crawls on the earth.”
Then God said, “Here! Throughout the whole earth I am giving you as food every seed-bearing plant and every tree with seed-bearing fruit. And to every wild animal, bird in the air and creature crawling on the earth, in which there is a living soul, I am giving as food every kind of green plant.” And that is how it was. God saw everything that he had made, and indeed it was very good. So there was evening, and there was morning, a sixth day. ~ Genesis 1:27b-31
Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, along with everything in them. ~ Genesis 2:1
Day Seven: God Rested
On the seventh day God was finished with his work which he had made, so he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. God blessed the seventh day and separated it as holy; because on that day God rested from all his work which he had created, so that it itself could produce. ~ Genesis 2:2-3
What’s Your Theory
Maybe you have your own theory as to what Genesis 1-2 means. I would love to hear what you think so comment below. Please do not send any, “I’m right. You’re wrong and going to hell” comments.
Our Heavenly Father, who is in heaven,
Help us to understand your Word, which will lead us to become grounded in You.
In Yeshua the Messiah’s name, Amen.
Genesis 1-2; John 1; Proverbs 3, 8