At the time of creation, on the sixth day, the Lord created both the male and female (Adam and Eve). As a result of the sin introduced to both, the Lord expelled them from the garden; to them were born two male children (Cain and Able). In time, Cain’s jealousy aroused itself and the older brother killed his younger brother (Genesis 4:1-8). After this event, the Lord placed a curse on Cain and he dwelt in the land of Nod, married, and bore children.
Where did Cain get his wife? “Since the Enlightenment this question has repeatedly come up in rhetoric against biblical inerrancy” (Mary Joan Winn Leith, “Who Did Cain Marry,” Biblical Archaeology Review, November/December 2013, pages 22, 82, 84).
Taking the Bible at “face value,” the author of the article said that there is no other adequate solution than Cain married his sister; she, however, offers “a different explanation.” This question is, indeed, a difficult question for some to field. In fact, Ms. Leith’s difficulty with the question, but her to a solution; but her answer is foreign to the biblical text. No matter, having done so, she is “better able to rest at night.”
From a liberal perspective (this is clearly the case within her article), she offers that the biblical writer (of Genesis) had an “us” and “them” attitude. In other words, “‘we’ are fully and ‘normally’ human and anyone who is ‘not us’ is at best less human and, at worst, not human at all.” What this boils down to is this: the biblical writers focused exclusively on their own people, history, genealogy, and on nothing outside of them (Israel’s history) at all. Thus, any others that existed were “out there” and non-existent. Consequently, when Cain married, he did not marry his sister, but some “other people ‘out there’ when God created Adam and Eve, but they didn’t count, as far as the Israelite storyteller was concerned.”
The effect of this is that the biblical record is wrong, and so is Jesus.
The biblical record is clear, however; at creation there were no other existent people in other parts of the world. Consider the following: the Lord took six days to create heaven and earth, and on day six He created the first human couple; there were no others on that day. Jesus, in speaking with the religious leaders of His day spoke about marriage, said that man was at the beginning (Matthew 19:4), exactly like Genesis records it. Moreover, when Paul wrote to the Corinthians, he mentioned Adam as the first man (1 Corinthians 15:45).
Just like it was mentioned last week, this is no insignificant matter. The biblical record is true, or it is not. Whatever cultural factors played a role in the writing of it, those who wrote by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit knew well whether they were telling the truth or not. Merely because some have a presupposition (an initial bias) against the historical reliability of the Bible in no way minimizes its historical credibility.
In Genesis 1, and then again in chapter 2, we have the Lord creating heaven and earth, told to us in summary fashion (chapter 1), then in a more detailed fashion (chapter 2). Who did Cain marry? The Scripture does not answer, but with man being a perfect specimen of health at that time, the laws prohibiting today did not apply to back then. RT