Everything You Need To Know About Who Cain Married [‘Who Was Cain’s Wife’?]

how to know if you are in the wrong relationship
Who Was Cain?
Cain was the first child of Adam and Eve recorded in Scripture (Genesis 4:1). He and his brothers, Abel (Genesis 4:2) and Seth (Genesis 4:25), were part of the first generation of children ever born on this earth. Even though these three males are specifically mentioned, Adam and Eve had other children.
Cain’s Brothers and Sisters
In Genesis 5:4 we read a statement that sums up the life of Adam and Eve: “After he begot Seth, the days of Adam were eight hundred years; and he had sons and daughters.”
During their lives, Adam and Eve had a number of male and female children. In fact, the Jewish historian Josephus wrote, “The number of Adam’s children, as says the old tradition, was thirty-three sons and twenty-three daughters.”
Scripture doesn’t tell us how many children were born to Adam and Eve, but considering their long life spans (Adam lived for 930 years—Genesis 5:5), it would seem logical to suggest there were many. Remember, they were commanded to “be fruitful, and multiply” (Genesis 1:28).
The Wife
If we now work totally from Scripture, without any personal prejudices or other extrabiblical ideas, then back at the beginning, when there was only the first generation, brothers would have had to marry sisters or there wouldn’t have been any more generations!
We’re not told when Cain married or many of the details of other marriages and children, but we can say for certain that Cain’s wife was either his sister or a close relative.
The Bible does not specifically say who Cain’s wife was. The only possible answer is that Cain’s wife was his sister or niece or great-niece, etc. The Bible does not say how old Cain was when he killed Abel (Genesis 4:8). Since they were both farmers, they were likely both full-grown adults, possibly with families of their own. Adam and Eve surely had given birth to more children than just Cain and Abel at the time Abel was killed. They definitely had many more children later (Genesis 5:4).
The fact that Cain was scared for his own life after he killed Abel (Genesis 4:14) indicates that there were likely many other children and perhaps even grandchildren of Adam and Eve already living at that time. Cain’s wife (Genesis 4:17) was a daughter or granddaughter of Adam and Eve.

We’re not told when Cain married or many of the details of other marriages and children, but we can say for certain that Cain’s wife was either his sister or a close relative.

A closer look at the Hebrew word for “wife” in Genesis reveals something readers may miss in translation. It was more obvious to those speaking Hebrew that Cain’s wife was likely his sister. (There is a slim possibility that she was his niece, but either way, a brother and sister would have married in the beginning.) The Hebrew word for “wife” used in Genesis 4:17 (the first mention of Cain’s wife) is ishshah, and it means “woman/wife/female.”
And Cain knew his wife [ishshah], and she conceived and bore Enoch. And he built a city, and called the name of the city after the name of his son—Enoch (Genesis 4:17).
The word ishshah is the word for “woman,” and it means “from man.” It is a derivation of the Hebrew words ‘iysh (pronounced: eesh) and enowsh, which both mean “man.” This can be seen in Genesis 2:23 where the name “woman” (ishshah) is given to one who came from Adam.
And Adam said: “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman [ishshah], because she was taken out of Man [iysh]” (Genesis 2:23).
Thus, Cain’s wife is a descendant of Adam/man. Therefore, she had to be his sister (or possibly niece). Hebrew readers should be able to make this connection easier; however, much is lost when translated.
Since Adam and Eve were the first (and only) human beings, their children would have no other choice than to intermarry. God did not forbid inter-family marriage until much later when there were enough people to make intermarriage unnecessary (Leviticus 18:6-18). The reason that incest today often results in genetic abnormalities is that when two people of similar genetics (i.e., a brother and sister) have children together, there is a high risk of their recessive characteristics becoming dominant. When people from different families have children, it is highly unlikely that both parents will carry the same recessive traits.
The human genetic code has become increasingly “polluted” over the centuries as genetic defects are multiplied, amplified, and passed down from generation to generation. Adam and Eve did not have any genetic defects, and that enabled them and the first few generations of their descendants to have a far greater quality of health than we do now. Adam and Eve’s children had few, if any, genetic defects. As a result, it was safe for them to intermarry.
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