Genesis 4 – Mystery of Lamech and the Slain

At the end of Genesis 4 we are introduced to Lamech and his two wives, who bear him sons who are the progenitors of skilled trades within this Middle Eastern culture.

Cryptically we are also introduced to what looks and sounds like a song or poem that Lamech spoke to his wives:

Adah and Zillah, hear my voice; Ye wives of Lamech, hearken unto my speech: For I have slain a man for wounding me, and a young man for bruising me: If Cain shall be avenged sevenfold, Truly Lamech seventy and seven fold.

So what in the world did Lamech do? Whatever the man and young man did to him, he worsened the situation by killing them both. Then the book goes on to explain the birth of the 3rd son (we think) of Adam and Eve: Seth. But what’s this song of Lamech all about? Who were the man and young man he had slain?

Lamech and his two wives. Who is the man slain on the ground?

The Bible in its current form doesn’t discuss, but there is a text that does: The Book of Jasher.

So, modern Christians, what do you do when you come across a cryptic verse in the Bible with little to zero explanation? Do you ponder on it, ignore it, or write it off? If there are texts that not only explain this mystery but add to the story of Genesis in total, would you be willing to read it?

I know for some, the answer is a resounding “NO!” for the Bible in it’s current form is supposed to be some divinely collated tome, without imperfection, and whole and complete as could possibly be.

For those with a more open mind, the story of Lamech mirrors the story of Cain, so much that, even as Lamech admits in his song that it mirrors Cain, it circles back to Cain in a way you wouldn’t possibly think.

Should it also be noted that this would be the 3rd murder mentioned in the Bible, but it’s not attributed to Satan or any part of DSL?


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