Antediluvian Man

Adam to the Great Flood — 10 Generations

Continuity of Narrative

Evening and morning, a sixth day: Adam first, and then Eve, is created. One hundred and thirty years later Adam has Seth who, at 105, begat Enos who is 90 when Cainan is born and he 70 when he has a son, Mahalaleel. The 65-year old Mahalaleel begat Jared who, at 162, begat Enoch. Remember Enoch — taken by God at age 365! [See author’s calculations at bottom page, or for another see Northwest College of the Bible Online.]

At 187 years old—about 50 years before the death of Adam—Enoch’s son Methuselah has Lamech, the father (at age 182) of Noah. Most of Lamech’s forefathers, including Adam, are alive up until Lamech’s fifth decade. The father of Noah, Lamech is in daily contact with Adam for some 40 – 50 years [see: Northwest College of the Bible Online].

Not long after Adam’s death is Enoch translated, and Seth too dies just before the birth of Noah himself. And Lamech and Methuselah likely die one within a few years of the other. Co-existing then as they do for 600 years, Lamech has opportunity to pass on much to Noah. And Noah’s three sons—Shem, Ham, and Japheth—each have 100 years alongside their grandfather, Lamech, but also their great-grandfather, Methuselah.

Table 1: Dates of biblical events from Creation (from Answers in Genesis)

Event/Person Passage Total Time from Creation (years)
God created everything. Genesis 1–2 0
Adam became the father of Seth at 130. Genesis 5:3 0 + 130 = 130
Seth, father of Enosh at 105. Genesis 5:6 130 + 105 = 235
Enosh, father of Kenan at 90. Genesis 5:9 235 + 90 = 325
Cainan, father of Mahalalel at 70. Genesis 5:12 325 + 70 = 395
Mahalalel, father of Jared at 65. Genesis 5:15 395 + 65 = 460
Jared, father of Enoch at 162. Genesis 5:18 460 + 162 = 622
Enoch, father of Methuselah at 65. Genesis 5:21 622 + 65 = 687
Methuselah, father of Lamech at 187. Genesis 5:25 687 + 187 = 874
Lamech, father of Noah at 182. Genesis 5:28 874 + 182 = 1056
The Flood started when Noah was 600. Genesis 7:6 1056 + 600 = 1656

As you can see from Table 1, the year in which the Flood came was 1656 AM 1 (Anno Mundi – “year of the world”). From the rest of the Old Testament and other well-documented historical events we understand that creation, as calculated by Ussher, was about 4004 BC. So with a little more math we can calculate the second date.

Calculated BC date for creation: 4004
Calculated AM date for the Flood: – 1656
Calculated BC date for the Flood: 2348
Current Year (minus one 2): + 2011
Number of years since beginning of Flood: 4359

Using the Bible, well-documented historical events, and some math, we find that the Flood began approximately 4,359 years ago in the year 1656 AM or 2348 BC. Some may look for an exact date (i.e., month and day), but we are not given that sort of precision in Scripture.

As we read Genesis—all scripture in fact—we are secure in the knowledge that, prior to the Great Flood, continuity of narrative had been well established. It appears likely that, up until then at least, this narrative was maintained with a high degree of fidelity so that Noah—and his three sons—take aboard the ark not just every animal of its kind but also a rich and accurate first-hand account of the antediluvian world, from the time of the “first Adam”.

Forewarned of the coming catastrophe, one suspects that Noah in particular ensured a good understanding of pre-flood history to take into a post-flood world. And as the Great Flood came (Noah’s 600th year) and slowly went (Noah’s 601st year), within two years—729 years from Adam’s death and 1659 years from his creation—the 135-year old Shem had his first-born, Arphaxad.

These are the families of the sons of Noah, after their generations, in their nations: and by these were the nations divided in the earth after the flood. —King James Bible, Genesis Chapters 5 and 11

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The Genealogy of Noah and his 3 sons

Author's rough but to-scale timeline
Author’s free-hand scaled (1 cm:100 years) Timeline (Genealogy) of Abraham (up to and inclusive of Reu). Note: co-existence (overlap) of Lamech (Noah’s father) with all before him, inclusive of Adam.


Full Timeline / Genealogy to Abraham scaled down
Full Timeline / Genealogy to Abraham scaled down


Antediluvian Continuity of Narrative

Featured Image: The end of the Edenic period, Adam and Eve are thrust into a bleak antediluvian world. Thomas Cole, 1828 [Wikimedia Commons]


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