HomeAcademicsAlbumArticleFC BibleFirpo FilesFlashpointJWs AfricaMatthewN-WordPeople!PharaohsProof of JesusPsych SeriesSentinelContact

Special Notice: People from over 210 lands regularly visit this site, and the current Firpo File Newsmagazine "Article" found here appears in up to 61 languages (machine translated from English as spoken in the United States) below. The languages, listed in alphabetical order, are as follows: Arabic ( بالعربية ), Bosnia (Latin), Bulgarian (Български), Cantonese (粵語), Catalan (Català), Chinese Simplified (中国人), Chinese Traditional (中國人), Croatian, Czech (České), Danish (dansker), Dutch (Nederlands), Estonian (Eesti), Fijian (Fijian), Filipino (Pilipino), Finnish (Suomi), French (Le français), German (Deutsch), Greek (Ελληνική), Haitian Creole (Kreyòl Ayisyen), Hebrew (עברית), Hindi (हिंदी), Hmong Daw, Hungarian (A magyar), Icelandic (Íslenska), Indonesian (Indonesia), Italian (Italiano), Japanese [日本人日本語〕], Kiswahili (Kiswahili), Korean (한국), Latvian (Latviešu), Lithuanian (Lietuvių), Malay (Melayu), Malagasy, Maltese (Malti), Norwegian (Nordmann), Persian (زبان فارسی), Polish (Polski), Portuguese (Português), Queretaro Otomi, Romanian (Roman), Russian (Русский язык), Samoan, Serbian (Cyrillic), Serbian (Latin), Slovak (slovenčina), Slovenian (slovenščina), Spanish (Español), Swedish (Svenska), Tahitian, Tamil (தமிழ்), Thai (ภาษาไทย), Tongan, Turkish (Türk), Ukrainian (українська), Urdu (اردو), Vietnamese (Tiếng Việt), Welsh (Welsh), Yucatec Maya.

.

.AdamandEve.jpg 

.

Adam and Eve in Africa

 

Recent scientific findings regarding the location of Eden 

 

The Firpo Files Digital Newsmagazine

by Dr. Firpo Carr, PhD, Health Psychologist

Member: American Psychological Association (APA)

Division 36: Society for the Psychology of Religion and Spirituality

Division 38: Society for Health Psychology

Division 40: Society for Clinical Neuropsychology

Division 48: Society for the Study of Peace, Conflict and

Violence: Peace Psychology Division

Division 52: International Psychology

Religious Scholar, Seminary Graduate:

Master of Arts in Urban Ministry 

November 18, 2019

 

[SPECIAL EDITION: English only] 

.

 

This illustration of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden graced the front cover of the January 11, 1988, issue of Newsweek magazine. Obviously, the couple is depicted as being Black. Fifteen years later, a Time magazine cover (March 3, 2003) shows Eve as a Black woman (see below). As the gallery of portraits that follows this article indicates, other artists in undated works portray Adam and Eve as African.  

Does this mean the Garden of Eden, the home of Adam and Eve (Genesis 2:8), was in fact on the African continent?

Actually, the notion of the biblical Garden of Eden being in Africa is not new. What is new is the proposed location in Africa.

Where’s that?

Eden’s New Location?: The answer lies in the first half of the provocatively titled article in the October 31, 2019, issue of The Economist: “Where was Eden? Perhaps in a sun-baked salt plain in Botswana.” Yes, Africa is still regarded as having hosted the original Eden, even if Botswana appears to bump Ethiopia (and maybe Kenya too) off its perch as the original home of humanity’s first couple.  

The article maintains that humans “began as an African species” as “proved in the 1980s by Allan Wilson of the University of California, Berkeley.” Indeed, the earliest humans “spread over Africa and Asia,” and then “spread to Australia, Europe and the Americas,” as per the article, and as per the Bible itself (Genesis 9:19; 10:12).[1]

This would explain why what is arguably the oldest written language (hieroglyphics) and the oldest, most sophisticated manmade structures (the pyramids) are in Africa. It would also explain why Nimrod--who historians say was a Black African[2]--wanted to build what is thought to be a pyramid-like edifice with its top beyond the tallest trees, which was considered heaven by past civilizations (Genesis 11:1-4).[3]    

Going into more detail, the article in The Economist further states that “Wilson’s research showed that the family trees of present-day human mitogenomes, their branches caused by mutations over the millennia, converge in a way which makes clear that their common ancestor lived in Africa. Hence the nickname Mitochondrial Eve.”

Research since Wilson’s efforts buttresses the scientific conclusion that human life started on the Dark Continent that continually illuminates our past.  

For example, “a group of researchers led by Vanessa Hayes of the Garvan Institute in Sydney, Australia” suggests that “the mix of evidence, genetic, and climatic” “paint quite a plausible picture” that modern man began in Botswana.

But, is this conjectured location fixed in stone?

And do science and the Bible really agree on Eve?

All About Eve: The second part of the title of The Economist article reads: “Mitochondrial Eve, an ancestor of all alive now, dwelt by a vanished lake.”

Fascinatingly, this description of Mitochondrial Eve--“who is an ancestor of all alive now”--precisely matches the description of the biblical Eve at Genesis 3:20, which says that she “was the mother of all living” (King James Version).

Yet again, science agrees with the Bible.

Adam Also: The Economist article says that Mitochondrial Eve “was by no means the first human being,” and then reports again that “everyone now alive can claim descent from her.”

Incredibly, that Eve “was by no means the first human being” is completely in sync with what the Bible says. God’s Word simply states: “For God made Adam first, and afterward he made Eve” (1 Timothy 2:13 [New Living Translation]).

Okay, this is what the Bible says about Adam; but, what does science say about him?

“What is true for Eve is also true for Adam,” asserts The Economist article. “Part of the DNA on the Y-chromosome, which is passed unmixed from father to son, can be used to draw up a similar tree that is also rooted in Africa.” Yes, just as the Bible states, Adam and Eve were our first parents, and they lived in Africa.

Evolution or Creation?: Oddly, the scientists mentioned in the article believe human life evolved. But they also believe humans had a definitive start in Africa with “Adam” and “Eve” (curiously, using the same Bible names), who the Bible says were created.

But they can’t have it both ways.

Either we got here by evolution or we got here by creation.

Either you’re pregnant or you aren’t.

You can’t be almost pregnant, a little pregnant, or kind of pregnant.

And if you’re thinking that God created us through evolution, think again.

Instead of being created in the image of any animal, the Holy Writ says that “God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them” (Genesis 1:27 [New International Version]).

Make no mistake about it. Jehovah God, the Creator of everything (Genesis 1:1), did not create man and woman in the image of any animal (1 Corinthians 11:7-9; compare Romans 1:22-23).

Conclusion: Having visited Botswana, Egypt, Ethiopia[4], and Kenya, I’m disinclined to believe that Botswana is the original home of Eden as The Economist article suggests. However, I see any of the other three countries--their modern-day borders notwithstanding--as candidates for the location of the Garden of Eden, with Ethiopia being the most likely.

Whatever the case, both Scripturally and scientifically human life began in Africa. And for a certainty, we are all one big human family and Adam and Eve are our first parents.

Peace and blessings to all. Amen.

 

Various artist renditions of Adam and Eve throughout recent history:

.

AdamandEveonTime.jpg 

.

 

 AdamandEveEthiopia.jpg

.

.

 AdamandEveTetragrammaton.jpg

.

.

AdamandEveAngel.jpg 

.

.

AdamandEveFullBody.jpg 

.
.


[1] Actually, the biblical chain of events indicates that humans migrated eastward (Genesis 4:16), eventually reaching the region where Nimrod built the Tower of Babel (Genesis 11:1-9). Instead of spreading across Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, and the Americas from Botswana, early members of the human family dispersed from the Tower of Babel. The Scriptural account reads:

“As the people migrated to the east, they found a plain in the land of Babylonia and settled there” (Genesis 11:2 [New Living Translation]). The “land of Babylonia” or “Shinar” (which also came to be known as Chaldea or Mesopotamia) was where the Tower of Babel was partially erected and encompasses modern-day Iraq, which today is east (just as is stated at Genesis 11:2) of the African countries that are candidates for the location of the once vibrant Garden of Eden.

Intriguingly, the incident at the Tower of Babel is likely responsible for differing human characteristics of the artificial construct of what we call “race.” In other words, the different races we see today may be directly attributable to what happened at the Tower of Babel.

Here’s what I mean:

When language was confused at the Tower of Babel, those speaking the same new language pooled together after God indirectly scattered them to different areas of the then known world. The language groups eventually settled down in various regions of the earth, each with unique climates (as discussed below).

Once established in their new environments, their bodies--including their facial features--adapted. Consequently, as generations passed (see Ecclesiastes 1:4), genetic changes specific to each group occurred and became embedded or entrenched within the group.

That humans settled in different regions can be seen in that the early descendants of Japheth “were the ancestors of the people who live along the coast and on the islands. These are the descendants of Japheth, living in their different tribes and countries, each group speaking its own language” (Genesis 10:5 [Good News Translation]).

Interestingly, Genesis 10:5 is a literary anachronism (in this case, a description plucked out of time sequence but still consistent with associated events) since what is detailed in this verse comes before the dispersion of the builders of the Tower of Babel described at Genesis 11:1, where, again, it says that “the whole world had one language and a common speech” (New International Version).

Plainly stated, although Genesis 10:5 comes before Genesis 11:1, what happened at Genesis 10:5 occurred after what happened at Genesis 11:1.  

Finally, it should be noted that the conclusions I’ve drawn here, as well as the overall scenario itself, are all speculative. On the other hand, it may well be that most, if not all, of what has been presented here is indeed factual.

[2] How do we know that Nimrod was a Black African? There’s plenty of evidence. For starters, he was the son of Cush (Hebrew: כּוּשׁ, Kush, “black”; Greek, Αἰθίοψ, Aithiops, “an Ethiopian,” a compound word, derived from αἴθω [aitho, “I burn”] and ὤψ [ops, “face”]). Also, according to the ancient historian Flavius Josephus, as well as other historians, Noah’s son Ham was a dark-skinned African whose descendants populated northern Africa, a land that the Greeks would later call Egypt.

Before this, the locals called this land “Kemet” (“the black land”) or “Ta Mery” (“the beloved land”). Significantly, insofar as the mighty hunter Nimrod was concerned (Genesis 10:8-9), Kemet was also called “Ta Sety” (“the land of the bow”). In English literature, a “nimrod” is a skilled hunter. Nimrod’s descendants, Black Africans, are skilled hunters down to this day.

Moreover, Kemet--or, Egypt, “the black land”—was also called “the land of Ham” in several places in the Bible (Psalm 78:51; 105:23,27; 106:22; 1 Chronicles 4:40). Intriguingly, another one of Ham’s sons was Mizraim, which is the Hebrew word for “Egypt.”

Weaving it all together, the Table of Nations in the biblical record at Genesis 10:6-9 lists Ham as fathering both Cush and Mizraim, and Cush as fathering Nimrod, all of them black Africans.

But why would Nimrod want to build a city and inaugurate an infamous city hall called the Tower of Babel in the first place?

Stated simply, he wanted to be famous by establishing not just Babel, but a string of impressive cities (Genesis 10:10-12), all in defiance of God. In fact, Nimrod was the mighty leader of a group of men who all wanted to make a name for themselves. Building one bustling city, in particular, Babel (Genesis 10:10; 11:9), with a monumental structure, would help them accomplish that purpose.

The Bible record is clear in telling us that after deliberating, Nimrod proposed to his crew: “Come, let’s build a great city for ourselves with a tower that reaches into the sky. This will make us famous and keep us from being scattered all over the world” (Genesis 11:4 [New Living Translation]).

As noted in the main text, the word “heavens” at Genesis 11:4 in the New International Version was the expanse beyond the tallest trees. An alternate rendering of “heavens” is “sky,” as can be seen at Genesis 11:4 in the New Living Translation.

In other words, the Tower of Babel was an ancient skyscraper that may have pierced the clouds!

However, it did not literally reach the “heavens” no more so than a modern-day skyscraper--like the world’s tallest structure, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, United Arab Emirates--literally scrapes the "sky."

Although we now know why Nimrod wanted to build a city (namely, to be famous), from where did he get this city-building idea?

Apparently he got the original idea from Cain, one of Adam’s sons.

After traveling and settling east of Eden (also called the “land of Nod” at Genesis 4:16 in some Bible translations), Adam’s murderous son Cain built a city for his own son, Enoch.

We read: “Cain made love to his wife, and she became pregnant and gave birth to Enoch. Cain was then building a city, and he named it after his son Enoch” (Genesis 4:17 [New International Version]). As a proud father, Cain built and named the city after his son Enoch so that both their names would endure beyond death.

Nimrod, who disobeyed and opposed God as did his ancestor Cain, took city-building to a new level by orchestrating a symphony of them, as previously mentioned in this footnote. He then went to the next level by initiating the construction of the tallest building ever.

For a fact, Nimrod preferred city building over tent-dwelling (Genesis 4:20). Indeed, technology was such that even musical instruments were crafted early in man’s history (Genesis 4:21). After all, the human brain was still very close to perfection, so city-building and instrument-making were perhaps far more advanced than we imagine.  

To this very day, nations spanning the globe race to see who can construct the tallest building in the world, thereby making a celebrated name for themselves.

The Oxford dictionary documented that Nimrod’s idea to build the Tower of Babel was ostensibly such a boneheaded one that the word “nimrod” (small “n”) came to be equated with “an inept person,” which is the definition of “nimrod” found in that dictionary.

[3] Genesis 11:4 reads: “Then they said, ‘Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens’” (New International Version). There is reason to believe that the “heavens” mentioned here is the area above the highest trees.

Now, although the Genesis account doesn’t mentioned trees in this context (Genesis 11), in my travels as an adventurer to countries with pyramids in Central America (particularly Tikal in Guatemala) and Southeast Asia (especially Angkor Wat in Cambodia) I learned that the tallest pyramid-shaped structures were strategically fashioned to tower above the highest trees. Geometrically speaking, a pyramid is a polyhedron constructed by connecting a polygonal base that rises to a tip or apex.

When this apex or point exceeded the height of the tallest trees, it was thought that heaven had been accessed. That’s why in Tikal and Angor Wat the pyramids are temples. When inside the temple room apex, the high priest was considered to be in heaven, in the very presence of God. That the tallest of the original pyramids in Egypt is a pharaonic tomb (a place I found quite eerie) also has religious overtones.

[4] In describing one of the rivers associated with the location of the Garden of Eden, the Genesis account reads: “The second is the Gihon River that winds through Ethiopia” (Genesis 2:13 [Contemporary English Version]). Josephus linked the Gihon River to the Nile River, which conveniently flows northward through Ethiopia, Egypt, and Kenya, as well as eight other African countries. Notably, Botswana is not one of them.