sermon20230219 Genesis 12: The Third Adam
N. T. Wright, a British evangelical scholar, describes the story of Abraham this way:
Abraham emerges within the structure of Genesis as the answer to the plight of all humankind. The line of disaster and of the ‘curse’, from Adam, through Cain, through the Flood to Babel, begins to be reversed when God calls Abraham and says, ‘in you shall all the families of the earth be blessed’.
Here, after Adam and Noah, God is making another new start. Abram and his family constitute another Adam. Notice the parallels in the biblical narrative: Adam and Eve had three sons (besides other children who are not named in the text; Gen. 5:4). Similarly, the genealogy in Genesis 5 ends with a man who also had three sons (Shem, Ham, and Japheth). The genealogy in Genesis 11 ends in the same way: with a man who had three sons (Abram, Nahor, and Haran). This parallel is a literary technique inviting the reader to compare Abram with Noah and Adam.