How Did Adam and Eve Die? (What Does the Bible Say?)

As a minister of the Word, I often encounter all manner of questions. Once, as I waited in line for my coffee, I struck up a conversation with the guy behind me about the beginning of humanity. When he learned that I was a minister, he started his series of questions, using them to justify his belief in the theory of evolution. He began by asking, “How did Adam and Eve die?”

The Bible is silent on the cause of Adam and Eve’s death. In Genesis 5:5, we learn that Adam was 930 years old when he died; we don’t have any biblical record of Eve’s death. However, since Adam lived to 930, we can safely assume he died of old age.

Join me in this article as I explore the implications of this question and many others surrounding the death of Adam and Eve.

Did Adam and Eve Die When They Ate the Forbidden Fruit?

Not immediately. The Bible tells us that Adam was 930 years old when he died, and Eve had many children before her death.

“After he begot 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).

It is important to note that the Bible offers two interpretations of death: spiritual death and physical death.

Spiritually, Adam and Eve died immediately after eating the forbidden fruit. That is to say, their sin separated them from God.

Isaiah 59:2 reads, “But your iniquities have separated you from your God; And your sins have hidden His face from you, So that He will not hear.”

We see this as Adam and Eve hid in the garden when they heard God walking by; they were ashamed of their nakedness, something they didn’t notice before the fall.

Genesis 3:8 notes, “And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden.”

So in some way, Adam and Eve did die.

Physically, Adam lived for 930 years. Bible scholars interpret this to mean that Adam and Eve began to die when they ate the forbidden fruit.

After they sinned, God expelled them from Eden. He reasoned that they would seek out and eat from the Tree of Life, implying that physical death had begun.

Genesis 3:22 states, “Then the Lord God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of Us, to know good and evil. And now, lest he put out his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever.””

Where did Adam and Eve die?

How Did Adam and Eve Die?
Where did Adam and Eve die? Image source: Pixabay

We don’t know where Adam and Eve died. However, we can infer from the Bible that they died in the land East of Eden.

After the fall, God banished Adam and Eve from Eden. They moved to the land east of Eden.

The bible in Genesis 3:24 says, “So He drove out the man; and He placed cherubim at the east of the garden of Eden, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to guard the way to the tree of life.”

We don’t know where this was, but presumably, Adam and Eve stayed there until they died.

Who died first between Adam and Eve?

The Bible doesn’t tell us who died first. We know from Genesis 5:5 that Adam died at 930 years old, but we don’t know anything concerning Eve’s death.

However, The Apocalypse of Moses records that Adam fell ill and died. Before his death, he prophesied that Eve would die shortly after. Chapters 31-43 detail the death and burial of Adam and Eve.

According to these writings, Eve died six days after Adam. The stories here are greatly embellished and should be taken with a grain of salt.

Why didn’t Adam and Eve immediately die for their sin?

We don’t have an explicit answer to this, but we can infer that if Adam and Eve immediately died, then God’s promise for salvation through the seed of the woman wouldn’t be fulfilled.

Bible scholars refer to this verse as the Protoevangelium, the first mention of God’s plan for salvation. God put enmity between the snake and the woman’s child, the snake would strike his heel, and He (the offspring) would crush his head. This is a picture of Jesus’ victory over Satan at the Cross.

Jesus was a descendant of Seth, the son of Adam. We know that Adam was 130 years old when Seth was born. Thus if Adam and Eve died immediately, Seth would never have been born, rendering the protoevangelium null and void.

How old was Adam when he died?

How Did Adam and Eve Die?
How old was Adam when he died? Image source: Pixabay

According to Genesis 5:5, Adam died at 930 years old. He had Seth, his last recorded son, at 130 and lived a further 800 years before he died.

I’ve often wondered why he lived so long. Some argue that longevity was God’s way of filling the earth, while others believe it took time for sin’s effects to catch up with the rest of the world.

I think a combination of the two, plus the perfect state of the world before the flood contributed to their incredible lifespans.

Where is Adam and Eve buried?

The Bible doesn’t mention where Adam and Eve were buried. However, Jewish tradition teaches that they were buried in the Cave of Machpelah with the patriarchs: Abraham and Sarah, Isaac and Rebecca, and Jacob and Leah.

We find this tale in the Pirkei de-Rabbi Eliezer (Chapters of Rabbi Eliezer) 36:16-17. In this retelling, Abraham received guests and wanted to prepare a calf for them.

Genesis 18 reads, “Then the Lord appeared to him by the terebinth trees of Mamre, as he was sitting in the tent door in the heat of the day. So he lifted his eyes and looked, and behold, three men were standing by him; and when he saw them, he ran from the tent door to meet them, and bowed himself to the ground, and said, “My Lord, if I have now found favor in Your sight, do not pass on by Your servant.””

However, the calf ran into the cave of Machpelah. Abraham pursued it and there saw the remains of Adam and Eve surrounded by candles and engulfed in a sweet fragrance.

Abraham decided he must purchase the caves for a burial site. Later, in Genesis 23:17-18, Abraham bought the field and cave of Machpelah, where he buried Sarah.

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