The origin of man and the creation story is always a fascinating tale. It has always been revered in the biblical context and any attach on the doctrine of creation is taken as the attach on the backbone of Christianity.
According to the creation story, Adam and Eve were the first people that God created and placed them in the garden of Eden to take care of it. However, there has been some writing discovered that brings another aspect to the creation story, one that most people find a little hard to believe but it is gaining traction. It is all about Lilith, the woman who’s believed to have been in the garden of Eden as well.
So, the question people have been asking is – who is Lilith? Read on to find out all you need to know about her and especially in the context of the Catholic bible.
What You'll Learn Today
The Origin Of Lilith
First things first, it is important to make it clear that Lilith was never a biblical character. Her story is never part of the bible and the only mention refers to a ‘night-monster’.
However, that doesn’t mean that she is less important. Her story is one of those that Christians must know as it is always said that you shall know the truth and it shall set you free. So, who is Lilith and where does she come from?
A. Babylonian Talmudic Writings
Well, let us turn back the hands of time to 400 AD. This is exactly the time when her name was first mentioned in Jewish Talmudic writings. Here she is depicted as a vicious demon who steals or even eats babies.
B. Jewish Writings
Apart from the Talmud, other Jewish writings dated as far back as 700 AD also mention Lilith. However, in their context, she is mentioned as Adam’s first wife. The writings have it that Adam never lived with Lilith for Long because he was too demanding of here and hence, they parted ways.
C. Secular Literature
Lilith is not just confined to Jewish writings and culture. She is mentioned severally in secular literature written at the beginning of the 19th century. This literature remains alive and popular to date.
Much like in the Jewish Talmudic writings of 300-500 AD, the secular literature depicts Lilith as a demon and central figure in occultism and witchcraft. In many pagan religions Lilith such as Wicca, Lilith has been adopted as part of the rituals and practices.
Lilith And The Catholic Bible
Having seen the origin of Lilith, it is imperative that we now look at the relationship and significance if any with the catholic bible and faith.
Although not expressly mentioned in the bible, it is believed that Lilith was created at the same time or within the same period as Adam. In Genesis 1:27, the bible reads:
“So God created humankind in his image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.”
In the Hebrew Bible, the name Lilith is mentioned only once with regards to a prophecy passed on the Edomites. In Isaiah 34:14, the bible says:
“And desert creatures will meet with hyenas, and goat-demons will call out to each other. There also Liliths will settle and find for themselves a resting place.” In other versions, Lilith is referred to as the night-monster.
In the Jewish writings of the 700-1000 AD, especially the Alphabet of Ben Sira, newborn babies had an amulet placed around their necks to protect them against Lilith until their circumcision.
The Two Accounts Of Creation
It is believed that Adam had a wife before Eve as interpreted from the accounts of creation. According to the writings, Genesis 2:18,
“The LORD God said, ‘It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.”
This is because Lilith had abandoned Adam and the latter had started feeling lonely.
The writings persuade their readers that because Lilith and Adam were created in the same way, she refused to submit to Adam and hence they fell out.
Adam drove her out of the garden and that is how God saw that he was lonely again. Out of his mercy, He created Eve as a replacement and called her ‘Woman’ after man image and flesh. This was the first time the word woman was used, not havi9ng been mentioned when Lilith was created.
Lilith lineage was matriarchal and characterized by goddess worshippers Adam lineage was patriarchal. Until their destruction by the Yahwehists in the old testament, the goddess worshippers were community leaders, healers, and spiritual leaders within their setups.
Following the annihilation of the descendants of Lilith, the Yahwehists replaced the matriarchal society with a patriarchal society where men took charge and were head of families.
Therefore, as far as the catholic bible is concerned, Lilith is a mythical creature only present in Jewish history books. However, it is important to note that there was a conscious decision in 405 A.D. by Pope Innocent I that some of the books drawn from the Jewish writings should not be included in the Catholic bible when others were included. This is how the story of Lilith ended up confined in the ancient doctrines and not making up the rest of the bible.
So, to the Catholics just like the rest of the Christians, Lilith is only a night-monster mentioned in Isaiah. All the other books of the bible are silent and do not support the idea that the first account of creation was refereeing to her. Catholics don’t believe that Adam had a second wife called Lilith. The only teaching they know and propagate is that Eve is the biblical wife of Adam.