One Degree of Separation Between Adam and Noah
In the book of Genesis, chapter 5, Adam’s family tree is listed, including the ages of him and his descendants, with many recorded life spans hovering around 900 years, plus or minus a few decades.
While some doubt the veracity of these records, I’m willing to accept these ages as presented. (In Genesis 6:3, after the great flood, God decrees that from this point forward, people will live no more than 120 years.)
In considering the ages given, Adam (who lived 930 years) would have still been alive (albeit, 874 years old) when his great, great, great, great, great, great, grandson Lamech was born. Lamech was Noah’s father, the one and same Noah who built the ark in preparation for the aforementioned flood. That makes one degree of separation between Adam and Noah.
Also noteworthy is Methuselah, the oldest recorded person in the Bible, living 969 years; he was Noah’s grandpa. Lamech, and likely Methuselah, would have died just prior to the flood.
In the generations after the flood, life spans steadily decreased (see Genesis 10) towards this 120 mark.
Even though we can only hope to approach the maximum age of 120, it is interesting to contemplate what we might do and how we might plan if there was an expectation of living for many centuries and seeing the our next several generations of descendants.
However, since living to be 900 is not going to happen, we need to make the most of the relative few decades we have.
Peter DeHaan writes about biblical spirituality, often with a postmodern slant. He seeks a fresh approach to faith and following God through the lens of scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.