Thursday, June 16, 2011

Was Eve Banished From Eden?

וַיִּקְרָ֧א הָֽאָדָ֛ם שֵׁ֥ם אִשְׁתּ֖וֹ חַוָּ֑ה כִּ֛י הִ֥וא הָֽיְתָ֖ה אֵ֥ם כָּל־חָֽי׃
וַיַּעַשׂ֩ יְהוָ֨ה אֱלֹהִ֜ים לְאָדָ֧ם וּלְאִשְׁתּ֛וֹ כָּתְנ֥וֹת ע֖וֹר וַיַּלְבִּשֵֽׁם׃
וַיֹּ֣אמֶר יְהוָ֣ה אֱלֹהִ֗ים הֵ֤ן הָֽאָדָם֙ הָיָה֙ כְּאַחַ֣ד מִמֶּ֔נּוּ לָדַ֖עַת ט֣וֹב וָרָ֑ע וְעַתָּ֣ה פֶּן־יִשְׁלַ֣ח יָד֗וֹ וְלָקַח֙ גַּ֚ם מֵעֵ֣ץ הַֽחַיִּ֔ים וְאָכַ֖ל וָחַ֥י לְעֹלָֽם׃
וַֽיְשַׁלְּחֵ֛הוּ יְהוָ֥ה אֱלֹהִ֖ים מִגַּן־עֵ֑דֶן לַֽעֲבֹד֙ אֶת־הָ֣אֲדָמָ֔ה אֲשֶׁ֥ר לֻקַּ֖ח מִשָּֽׁם׃
וַיְגָ֖רֶשׁ אֶת־הָֽאָדָ֑ם וַיַּשְׁכֵּן֩ מִקֶּ֨דֶם לְגַן־עֵ֜דֶן אֶת־הַכְּרֻבִ֗ים וְאֵ֨ת לַ֤הַט הַחֶ֙רֶב֙ הַמִּתְהַפֶּ֔כֶת לִשְׁמֹ֕ר אֶת־דֶּ֖רֶךְ עֵ֥ץ הַֽחַיִּֽים׃

20 Then the man—Adam—named his wife Eve, because she would be the mother of all who live. 21 And the LORD God made clothing from animal skins for Adam and his wife.
22 Then the LORD God said, "Look, the human beings have become like us, knowing both good and evil. What if they reach out, take fruit from the tree of life, and eat it? Then they will live forever!" 23 So the LORD God banished them from the Garden of Eden, and he sent Adam out to cultivate the ground from which he had been made. 24 After sending them out, the LORD God stationed mighty cherubim to the east of the Garden of Eden. And he placed a flaming sword that flashed back and forth to guard the way to the tree of life. (Genesis 3:20-24, NLT)

20 The man named his wife Eve, because she was the mother of all living. 21 And the LORD God made garments of skins for the man and for his wife, and clothed them.
22 Then the LORD God said, "See, the man has become like one of us, knowing good and evil; and now, he might reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life, and eat, and live forever"— 23 therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from which he was taken. 24 He drove out the man; and at the east of the garden of Eden he placed the cherubim, and a sword flaming and turning to guard the way to the tree of life. (Genesis 3:20-24, NRSV)
These two translations of Genesis 3:20-24 might seem pretty similar, but there is one striking difference that may be overlooked by many readers. Whereas the NLT reads:
22..."Look, the human beings...What if they...Then they..." 23 So the LORD God banished them...24 After sending them out...
the NRSV reads:
22..."See, the man...and now, he..." 23 therefore the LORD God sent him forth....
The NRSV accurately represents the Hebrew in these verses, which uses the singular definite masculine noun הָאָדָם ha-adam ("the man/human being") with third-person singular masculine verbs ("he") and third-person singular masculine possessive suffixes ("his").

[NOTE: The NRSV should maybe translate לְאָדָם in 3:21 as "And the LORD God made garments of skins for Adam (not "for the man") and for his wife," since the Hebrew word is pointed as simply adam ("Adam") and not as ha-adam ("the man/human being").]

It's true that in Genesis 1:27 God speaks of the male and female human beings as the singular ha-adam, but there it's used with plural verbs ("you"(pl.)/"they") and plural pronominal suffixes ("them").

So... Who did God drive out from the Garden of Eden: Both Adam and Eve, or just Adam?

And if it was just Adam who was banished, then why and when did Eve apparently join him?

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