THE FALL OF MAN
In my earlier work on
“Created in the Image of God”, I have tried to explain how man
was created in the image of God in dimensions encompassing all
dimensions including the Divine as the Son of God - not as an
emanation but as the ultimate and final creation.
We will look into the various concepts of who Adam was and
what was his state before the fall.
These are not directly given in the Bible.
http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/The First Man Adam
gives the following description of
"Both worlds, heaven and earth, were to have a
share in man's creation; hence the host of angels were consulted
by the Lord when He said, 'Let us make man'" (Gen. 1. 26,
Gen. R. viii.).
But the old haggadists loved especially to dwell on
the glory of God's first-created before his fall. He was
"like one of the angels" (Slavonic Book of Enoch, xxx.
11; compare Christian Book of Adam, i. 10; also Papias in Gen. R.
xxi.; Pirḳe R. El. xii.; Ex. R. xxxii.; Targ. Yer. Gen. iii.
body reached from earth to heaven [or from one end of the world to
the other] before sin caused him to sink" (Ḥag. 12a,
Sanh. 38b; compare also Philo, "Creation of the
World," ed. Mangey, i. 33, 47). (This is referring to the
dimensions of the cosmos from material to divine)
Shaar HaGilgulim, the Ari explains that Adam had a universal soul
(neshamah klalit) that included [aspects of] all creation [i.e.
every individual angel and every individual animal - all were
asked to give an essence part of themselves to Adam; only as a
miniature reflection of the entire universe could he be connected
to all creation, and either elevate it or lower it...]. His soul
also included all the souls of mankind in a higher- unity. This is
why even one action on his part could have such a powerful effect.
After he ate from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, his soul
fragmented into thousands of thousands of sparks (fragments and
fragments of fragments) which subsequently became
clothed/incarnated in every single human being that was ever born
and is alive now."( http://www.projectmind.org/exoteric/souls.html)
"He was of extreme beauty and sunlike
brightness" (B. B. 58a).
"His skin was a bright garment, shining like
his nails; when he sinned this brightness vanished, and he
appeared naked" (Targ. Yer. Gen. iii. 7; Gen. R. xi.; Adam
and Eve, xxxvii.).
When God said: "Let us make man in our
image," the angels in heaven, filled with jealousy, said:
"What is man that Thou thinkest of him? A creature full of
falsehood, hatred, and strife!" But Love pleaded in his
favor; and the Lord spoke: "Let truth spring forth from the
earth!" (Gen. R. viii.; Midr. Teh. viii.).
Far older, and blended with Babylonian mythology (Isa.
xiv. 12), is the story preserved in Adam and Eve, the Slavonic
Book of Enoch, xxxi. 3-6 (compare Bereshit Rabbati, ed. Epstein,
p. 17; Pirḳe R. El. xiii.; Chronicle of Jerahmeel, xxii.;
and Koran, sura ii. 34; xv. 30), according to which all the angels
were commanded by Michael the archangel to pay homage to the image
of God; whereupon all bowed before Adam except Satan, who, in
punishment for his rebelliousness, was hurled from his heavenly
heights to the depth of the abyss, while his vacant throne was
reserved for Adam, to be given to him at the time of the future
resurrection. Henceforth, Satan became the enemy of man, appearing
to him in the guise of an angel of light to seduce him (compare II
Cor. xi. 14). (This gives the reason for Satan to trick man
A somewhat modified midrashic legend (Gen. R. viii.)
relates that the angels were so filled with wonder and awe at the
sight of Adam, the image of God, that they wanted to pay homage to
him and cry "Holy!" But the Lord caused sleep to fall
upon him so that he lay like a corpse, and the Lord said:
"Cease ye from man, whose breath is in his nostrils: for
wherein is he to be accounted of?" (Isa. ii. 22).
Another version (Pirḳe R. El. xi.; Tan.,
Peḳude, 3) is that all other creatures, marveling at Adam's
greatness, prostrated themselves before him, taking him to be
their creator; whereon he pointed upward to God, exclaiming:
"The Lord reigneth, He is clothed with majesty!" (Ps.
Still, the Book of Wisdom (ii. 23, 24) seems to allude to
the older legend when saying, "God created man for
immortality, but through the envy of Satan death entered the
world" (compare Josephus, "Ant." i. 1, § 4; Ab. R.
N. i.; Gen. R. xviii., where the serpent is represented as moved
paradise had angels (agathodæmons or serpents) to wait upon and
dance before him (Sanh. 59b, B. B. 75a, Pirḳe
R. El. xii.).
He ate "angel's bread" (compare Ps. lxxiii. 26;
Yoma, 75b; Vita Adæ et Evæ, § 4).
All creation bowed before him in awe. He was the light of the
world (Yer. Shab. ii. 5b)
In Mohammedan Literature we find:
"When thy Lord said to the angels, 'Verily, I
am about to create a mortal out of clay; and when I have fashioned
him, and breathed into him of My spirit, then fall ye down before
him adoring.' And the angels adored, all of them save Iblis, who
was too big with pride, and was of the misbelievers.
Said He, 'O Iblis! what prevents thee from adoring
what I have created with My two hands? Art thou too big with
pride? or art thou amongst the exalted?'
Said he, 'I am better than he; Thou hast created me
from fire, and him Thou hast created from clay.' (sura xxxviii. 70-82).
At a later period Mohammed developed the personal
character of the first man and his direct relationship to God,
whose vicegerent (khalifah, calif) he is to be on earth. At
the same time Satan is represented as being the one who drove Adam
Adam as Vicegerent of God.
"And when thy Lord said unto the angels, 'I am
about to place a vicegerent in the earth,' they said, 'Wilt Thou
place therein one who will do evil therein and shed blood? We
celebrate Thy praise and hallow Thee.'
Said [the Lord], 'I know what ye know not.' ....
when He said to the angels, 'Adore Adam,' they adored him save
only Iblis, who refused and was too proud, and became one of the
"And He said, 'O Adam, dwell, thou and thy
wife, in paradise, and eat there from amply as you wish; but do
not draw near this tree or ye will be of the transgressors.'
And Satan made them backslide there from, and drove
them out from what they were in, and He said, 'Go down, one of you
the enemy of the other; and in the earth there are an abode and a
provision for a time.'
And Adam caught certain words from his Lord, and He
turned toward him; for He is the Compassionate One easily turned.
He said, 'Go down there from altogether, and haply there may come
from Me a guidance, and whoso follows My guidance no fear is
theirs, nor shall they grieve'" (sura ii. 29-36).