Cain is the first Man to commit murder and is also the first man to die from an accident.
But what kind of an accident, construction or hunting? Or was it murder?
Cain was the first born son of Adam and Eve in the Book of Genesis, chapter four. He was a farmer and his brother Abel, who was born shortly after him, was a shepherd. The brothers made sacrifices to God, each of his own produce, but God favored Abel’s sacrifice instead of Cain’s.
Cain became jealous over God favoring his brother over him and murdered Abel, whereupon God punished him to a life of wandering. Cain then dwelt in the land of Nod where he built a city and fathered a line of descendants beginning with Enoch.
Adam -> Cain -> Enoch -> Irad -> Mehujael -> Methusael -> Lamech -> Tubal Cain (Genesis 4:1-22)
This is generally all we really know about Cain and his descendants. He was the first born human who became jealous of his brother Abel and slew him. He tried to hide the body and then lied to God about it. He became cursed and banished by God, but in God’s mercy, He marked Cain to prevent vengeance from being taken upon him for slaying his brother Abel.
Cain was the first human born and Abel was the first to die
We’re told about his fate (curse and banishment), but his final fate is seldom mentioned. Most probably because he and his descendants were eventually wiped out in the Flood and it doesn’t much matter.
Did he try to escape like depicted in the 2014 film “Noah”, starring Russell Crowe. Tubal Cain (or possibly Cain) was depicted as rallying his followers to do battle with Noah and seize the Ark he was building.
The film shows him, or rather his decendant Tubal Cain, managing to stowaway aboard the Ark until he finally dies fighting when he is discovered by Noah.
Is this how it really went down?
Did Cain or Tubal Cain die trying to survive the flood while stowaway’ed aboard the Ark as in the film ‘Noah’?
Well you can’t go by Hollywood Films to get Biblical or Historical facts. So the answer to that is most likely a big NO. In all truth we really don’t know for sure what happened to Cain in the end, but we do have some good probabilities.
The demise of Cain is revealed in both the Books of Jasher and Jubilees and they give two different accounts.
- The Book of Jubilees, sometimes called Lesser Genesis (Leptogenesis), is an ancient Jewish religious work of 50 chapters.
- The Book of Jasher, also called the Book of the Upright, is known in Hebrew as: סֵפֶר הַיׇּשׇׁר (sēfer hayyāšār), or Sefer haYashar. It is a Hebrew midrash book mentioned in the Hebrew Bible. It is known as the “Book of the Just Man” in the traditional Greek and Latin translations, while the transliterated form “Jasher” is found in the King James Bible, 1611. The Septuagint translation renders the Hebrew סֵפֶר הַיׇּשׇׁר (sēfer hayyāšār) as ‘Book of the Just’.
In the book of Jubilees we’re told of Cain taking his sister Awan as a wife and of her bearing him a son named Enoch. We are then informed of his building houses in the construction of a city named after his first born son Enoch,
And Cain (Qayin Hebrew: קין) took Awan (Hebrew אָוֶן) his sister to be his wife and she bare him Enoch at the close of the fourth jubilee. [190-196 A.M.] And in the first year of the first week of the fifth jubilee, [197 A.M.] houses were built on the earth, and Cain built a city, and called its name after the name of his son Enoch.
In the same chapter of Jubilees, we’re told his crime as finally being atoned for when he met death by his house tumbling on him.
At the close of this jubilee Cain was killed after him in the same year; for his house fell upon him and he died in the midst of his house, and he was killed by its stones; for with a stone he had killed Abel, and by a stone was he killed in righteous judgment.
By means of a construction accident is the account in the Book of Jubilee of how Cain may have died.
But there’s an account which claims Cain was killed in a hunting accident.
In the Book of Jasher, Cain’s great-grandson Lamech took him for a wild beast in the distance and shot him with an arrow. (Lasher 2:26-30.)
When Lamech became old and near blind he accidentally slew Cain with arrows.
26 And Lamech was old and advanced in years, and his eyes were dim that he could not see, and Tubal Cain, his son, was leading him and it was one day that Lamech went into the field and Tubal Cain his son was with him, and whilst they were walking in the field, Cain the son of Adam advanced towards them; for Lamech was very old and could not see much, and Tubal Cain his son was very young.
27 And Tubal Cain told his father to draw his bow, and with the arrows he smote Cain, who was yet far off, and he slew him, for he appeared to them to be an animal.
28 And the arrows entered Cain’s body although he was distant from them, and he fell to the ground and died. 29 And the Lord requited Cain’s evil according to his wickedness, which he had done to his brother Abel, according to the word of the Lord which he had spoken.
30 And it came to pass when Cain had died, that Lamech and Tubal went to see the animal which they had slain, and they saw, and behold Cain their grandfather was fallen dead upon the earth.
We get verification of this story through a statement in Genesis chapter 5 when Lamech’s two wives, Adah and Zillah, left him for killing Cain and Tubal Cain and he makes a plea towards them for their return.
There are two different accounts of Lamech’s plea towards his wives. The first account is from the Book of Jasher whereas his wives left him and sought to kill him for killing, not just Cain but for also killing their son (Lamech and Zillah’s son) Tubal Cain too.
And Lamech was very much grieved at having done this, and in clapping his hands together he struck his son and caused his death.
After seeing what had happened (slaying Cain) he got angry at his son Tubal Cain who was suppose to be ‘his eyes’ and spot hunting game for him. Lamech killed him in his anger by crushing his skull.
His wives heard about this and immediately left him seeking his death for both killing Cain and for killing their son (Zillah’s only son and gift from God) Tubal Cain.
32 And the wives of Lamech heard what Lamech had done, and they sought to kill him.
33 And the wives of Lamech hated him from that day, because he slew Cain and Tubal Cain, and the wives of Lamech separated from him, and would not hearken to him in those days.
34 And Lamech came to his wives, and he pressed them to listen to him about this matter.
35 And he said to his wives Adah and Zillah, Hear my voice O wives of Lamech, attend to my words, for now you have imagined and said that I slew a man with my wounds, and a child with my stripes for their having done no violence, but surely know that I am old and grey-headed, and that my eyes are heavy through age, and I did this thing unknowingly.
36 And the wives of Lamech listened to him in this matter, and they returned to him with the advice of their father Adam, but they bore no children to him from that time, knowing that God’s anger was increasing in those days against the sons of men, to destroy them with the waters of the flood for their evil doings.
Lamech’s plea to his wives was slightly different in the Book of Genesis:
Genesis 5:23-24 (NIV)
23 Lamech said to his wives,
“Adah and Zillah, listen to me;
wives of Lamech, hear my words.
I have killed a man for wounding me,
a young man for injuring me.
24 If Cain is avenged seven times,
then Lamech seventy-seven times.”
Cain was marked by God to curse anyone who slew him to be avenged by Cain seven times (Genesis 4), now Lamech was making the declaration that he’s marked seventy-seven times.
I dare say, this declaration of being marked greater than Cain (77 times) implies guilt. This is contrary to the story given by Jubilees where Cain dies from a construction accident when his house falls on him and he’s either hit or crushed by stone.
The story in Jasher tells of him having died by being hit by an arrow in a hunting accident. Although Tubal Cain could have know it was Cain and not an animal and intentionally caused his father to shot an arrow at Cain with the intent of slaying him.
The plea to his wives and declaration of being cursed in Genesis claims he killed someone who had injured him.
Genesis 5:23 (NIV)
“… I have killed a man for wounding me,
a young man for injuring me.”
Perhaps they were attacked by Cain and there was a fight. In Jasher is says, “Cain advanced towards them“:
“… and whilst they were walking in the field, Cain the son of Adam advanced towards them;”
Perhaps Cain had attacked them. It is said that he advanced upon them.
A mystery only God and the Divine know for sure.
A parallel to Cain’s death comes from the Norse story of Baldr’s death when Loki tricked Hodr, who was blind, into shooting an arrow made of mistletoe at Baldr and slaying him.
- Book of Jasher, chapter 2
- Lancelot C. Brenton. The Septuagint with Apocrypha: Greek and English. Hendrickson Publishers, 1986. ISBN: 978-0913573440
- Book of Genesis, Chapter 4, New International Version
- Book of Genesis, Chapter 5, New International Version.
- “Cain”. Jewish Encyclopedia.
- Book of Jubilees
- S. C. Malan. The Book of Adam and Eve. Forgotten Books, 2017. ISBN 978-1331687283
In December of 2017, Pope Francis announced that The Lord’s Prayer has been mistranslated and was being recited wrong. The Lord’s Prayer was given to us in the New Testament Gospels of Matthew and Luke and were originally written in Biblical Greek (Koine Greek), not from Latin (Vulgate Latin) as most most modern tranlastions of the BIble get their version from.
What was the original Lord’s Prayer given to us by Jesus?
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