The Grandchildren of Adam and Eve
The Bible mentions only two of the grandchildren of Adam and Eve. The first grandchild was Enoch, son of Cain: “And Cain knew his wife, 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).
And the second grandson of Adam and Eve was Enosh, the son of Seth: “And as for Seth, to him also a son was born; and he named him Enosh. Then men began to call on the name of the Lord” (Genesis 4:26). According to Genesis 5:7, Seth had other sons and daughters: “Seth lived eight hundred and seven years, and had sons and daughters.” So, Adam had more grandchildren from Seth.
After Adam begat Seth, “the days of Adam were eight hundred years; and he had sons and daughters. So, all the days that Adam lived were nine hundred and thirty years; and he died” (Genesis 5:4-5). Thus, Adam himself had sons and daughters apart from those referred to and so there were also grandchildren from those other children.
How Many Children Did Adam and Eve Have?
The Bible does not specify how many children Adam and Eve had. But it does tell us of 3 of their sons. After Adam and Eve left the Garden of Eden, the woman gave birth to two children, Cain, and then Abel. “Now Adam knew Eve his wife, and she conceived and bore Cain, and said, “I have acquired a man from the Lord.” Then, she bore again, this time his brother Abel” (Genesis 4:1-2).
As the two boys grew, they were vastly different. Abel obeyed the Lord God and offered an animal sacrifice for the forgiveness of sin (Hebrews 9:22). But Cain didn’t offer a blood sacrifice. Instead, he offered a plant offering. Therefore, God accepted the offering of Abel but rejected the offering of Cain.
Filled with jealousy and hate, Cain murdered Abel (Genesis 4:8). Cain’s “works were evil and his brother’s righteous” (1 John 3:12). So, God cursed Cain for killing his innocent brother (Genesis 4:11,12). Later, Cain married and begat his own nation (see Where did Cain’s wife come from?).
After the death of Abel, “Adam knew his wife again, and she bore a son and called his name Seth. And she said, “God has appointed for me another offspring instead of Abel, for Cain killed him” (Genesis 4:25). The name Seth means the “appointed one,” the “compensation” or “substitute” for Abel. Seth became the one through whom the godly line was perpetuated.
Bible scholars assume that the first man and woman had a large family that consisted of many boys and girls. This assumption is based on the Bible telling us that Adam lived to be 930 years old (Genesis 5:5). This age is about ten times longer than most people live today.
Pre-flood people would live at least 800 years after the birth of their first child due to the original vitality given at creation, the effect of the fruit of the Tree of Life, the superior quality of food, piety, and the divine grace in delaying the judgement on the penalty of sin. Thus, Adam lived to see eight future generations. His life stretched more than half the time to the Flood. In fact, Adam lived long enough to meet Noah’s father, and his son long enough to meet Noah. And if we look at Bible genealogy, we see that Noah lived long enough to meet Abraham.
It was sometime after the flood that people’s age dramatically decreased. This happened during Peleg’s lifetime, where interestingly enough the Bible in Genesis 10:25 tells us the earth was divided (see How was the Earth divided in the Days of Peleg?). People were allowed to eat the flesh of animals which also led to the shortening of life (Genesis 9:3). But everyone else pre-flood lived longer.
If we scale today’s fertility to the antediluvian time, it would be about 350 years. If we suppose that Adam and Eve had just one child every seven years of her fertility, then they would have had 50 children. This is just a modest estimate, as it is likely that they obeyed God’s first commission to: “be fruitful and multiply” (Genesis 1:28).
It is interesting to note that there is a tradition outside the Scripture in The Works of Josephus as a footnote which states: “The number of Adam’s children, as says the old tradition, was 33 sons and 23 daughters” – (see ccel.org)
In His service,