Cain did not Marry His Sister


Consider Genesis 4:17.

“And Cain’s wife became pregnant and bore Enoch; and Cain built a city, and named it after his son, Enoch.” (Amp Bible).

This verse has been repeatedly used and abused. Many people use it to question the infallibility of the Bible.  In fact, some use it as a reason to not believe anything the Bible says.  They think the only way a woman could be available for Cain to marry is if she was his sister.  They find this repulsive incest and state God is against inbreeding (Lev 18:6-15).

In nature, inbreeding results in increased genetic disorders, increased infant mortality, smaller adult sizes and loss of immune system functions. So, even though some say Adam and Eve’s gene pool was so pure, there was no bad outcome of inbreeding another answer is possible.

A few facts must be examined.

  1. Gen 3:20 states that Eve was given her name because she was the mother of all living people.
  2. Gen 6:2 points out there were beings called the sons of God.
  3. Gen 6:4 the sons of God and daughters of men produced giants as children.

First consider the subtlety of God’s judgment on Eve for eating the forbidden fruit.

 “I will greatly multiply your grief and your suffering in pregnancy and the pangs of child-bearing; with spasms of distress you shall bring forth children; …”(Gen 3:16 Amp Bible),

God does NOT say “when you start having children you will suffer”, but “the pain you have been suffering in child-birth will be greatly increased”. The inference is Eve has already been birthing children.

If Eve was the mother of all living people, she was the mother of the “Sons of God”. Matt 16:16 states Jesus is the Son of God.  This verse is the only one in the Bible we are given any detail how He became the Son of God.  That detail is given in Matt 1:18; Mary, mother of Jesus, becomes impregnated by the Holy Spirit.

Therefore, the sons of God in Gen 6:2 came about from Eve being impregnated by the Holy Spirit.

As I detailed in an earlier Blog, Adam and Eve may have lived hundreds or thousands of years before they partook of the forbidden fruit (Gen 5:3 states Adam was 130 years old when Seth was born, but that is a reckoning of time after it changed because of sin. Before then there was no aging).

During all those years, Adam’s seed in Eve produced girls, while sons came about from the Holy Spirit; hence they are the sons of God. This is underscored by Gen 4:1.

“ … I have gotten and gained a man with the help of the Lord.” (Gen 4:1)

Eve was surprised she and Adam had produced a male (after the first sin), but recognized the Lord now allowed her and Adam to have male children, in addition to females.

The Bible doesn’t tell us the number of the sons of God or daughters of Adam born before the ‘fall’, but the number was certainly large enough for them to mate and have sons and daughters of their own (although half-siblings, this was acceptable to God for Abram and Sarai were half-brother and sister: Gen 20:12).

These sons and daughters could have married with the children of other off-spring from God and Adam. The population may have been quite large when the first sin occurred.  Cain could easily have had the pick of multiple women as a wife and they all would only be distant relatives.

But some will say John 3:16 states Jesus is God’s only son.

“…He gave up His only begotten Son, so that whoever believes …”

The term “only begotten” does not mean “only”. The Greek term translated as “only begotten” is monogenes. The definition is not an “only” son, but a “one-of-a-kind”, i.e., unique Son.  In fact, read Hebrews 11:17:

“By faith Abraham, when he was put to the test had already brought Isaac for an offering; he who had gladly received and welcomed God’s promises was ready to sacrifice his only be gotten (monogenes) son.”

Of course, Isaac was not Abrahams only son; he was the second one. The word is not about procreation, but a unique relationship between Father and son.

Jesus clearly is God’s unique son. But, Jesus’ uniqueness is not that he is God’s only son, but that He is God’s only begotten Son to die for fallen mankind’s sin.