Tuesday, August 16, 2022
HomeEditor PicksWho Is Lilith In The Bible

Who Is Lilith In The Bible

Lilith The First Woman

The Untold Truth Of Lilith

The second major story banned from the bible was the story of Lilith.

She was the first wife of Adam.

According to the old testament she was created along with Adam as an equal to him.

When he wanted her to lay beneath him she refused to be subservient and demanded equal status.

She was the first female created and the first feminist . So she was given a choice of compliance or banishment.

She chose banishment and was exiled and labeled a demonic entity associated with infanticide , feminism, and demonic sex.

Some things have not changed much over thousands of years.

The Depictions Of Lilith Today

Depictions of her varied from a beautiful woman to a more sinister demon, and some even saw her as the snake in the Garden of Eden who tempted Eve with the forbidden fruit as one final act of revenge.

As time went on, there were folktales at saw Lilith as a demon Queen and thus related to Asmodeus, who many consider being the king of demons.

Asmodeus being mentioned in the book of Tobit, the Talmud and numerous other scriptures means its not a huge surprise that Lilith and he were paired together as the mother and father of demons.

Together, they had thousands of demon children and travelled from village to village causing chaos and destruction.

In some stories, shes also closely linked to Samael, who himself is a rather odd character. Some teachings in the cabal go as far as to say that Lilith was Samaels consort and that it was not God who created her, but instead, Samael who made himself a demon wife, who filled the role later intended for Eve. He also gave her a host of demonic children, one of these being Asmodeus who we mentioned earlier.

Throughout all these stories, there are three main signs of Lilith.

The woman who rebelled against God and Adamwhich is the side we see the least of.The seductive demoness who plagued the dreams of men to grow her demonic family and,Lastly, the monster who preyed upon pregnant women devouring their children.

Why Isn’t Lilith In The Bible

Assuming that Isaiah 34s word Lilith isnt connected to the character Lilith, there are no references to Lilith in the Bible. The simple answer to why the Bible doesnt feature Lilith is that she doesnt appear in the Book of Genesis, which is the Bibles account of the earths creation and of Adam and Eve. Scholars have debated the extent to which Genesis creation account is allegorical. However, conservative theologians have maintained that Adam and Eve were real people and that the story of Adam and Eves sin in the garden of Eden is a historical account.

In contrast to Adam and Eve, Lilith is a folklore character added later. The Babylonian Talmud wasnt written until 300-600 AD, and scholars estimate The Alphabet of ben Sirach was written at the earliest in 700 AD. Some scholars have argued that Lilith appears in, or is informed by Ancient Near Eastern mythologies and folklore, such as Lilu, an Akkadian word for a spirit that has demonic associations. Regardless of whether Lilith appears in these stories, she has the qualities of a mythological character, rather than a historical person.

Recommended Reading: How Many Books Are There In The King James Bible

The History Of Lilith From Demon To Adam’s First Wife To Feminist Icon

    In Jewish mythology and folklore, Lilith is a raven-haired demon who preys on helpless newborn infants and seduces unsuspecting men, using their “wasted seed” to spawn hordes of demon babies. Although her name only appears once in the Hebrew Bible, over the centuries Lilith has been cast as Adam’s rebellious first wife, the soul mate of Samael the demon king, and more recently as a feminist icon. So, which is the real Lilith?

    Long before Judaism claimed her, Lilith-like demons were haunting the nightmares of ancient Sumerians, Assyrians and Babylonians. Male and female demons called lilu and lilitu respectively appeared in the Sumerian Epic of Gilgamesh, and the Mesopotamian goddess Lamashtu was a winged demon that tormented women during childbirth, caused miscarriages and stole breastfeeding infants.

    What these various “L”-named spirits had in common was a sinister desire to strike at humans when they were most vulnerable, particularly pregnant women and newborns, in a pre-scientific age when infant and maternal mortality rates were wrenchingly high.

    “To me, these ancient stories recognize the limits of our ability to control the world and reflect a desire to make these awful events seem less random,” says Laura Lieber, a professor of religious studies at Duke University. “The pandemic is a reminder that there are certain things illness in particular that are a mystery, why certain people are afflicted and why others are spared.”

    How To Protect Your Child From Lilith

    Lilith: The First Woman? (Biblical Stories Explained)

    Long before the final version of the Lilith story congealed in the Alphabet of Ben Sirah, Lilith could be found in magical inscriptions on bowls and amulets meant to drive away the demoness from as early as the sixth century A.D. These talismans invoke the names of the angels Senoy, Sansenoy, and Semangelof, or sometimes the prophet Elijah, in order to protect young children from the grasp of Lilith. These amulets are mentioned in the Ben Sirah, and in fact, the story probably exists to give a more religious justification for the otherwise pretty superstition-and-magic-heavy amulets. The three angels are also found depicted on walls of children’s rooms, charms, and other talismans, in which they are portrayed as somewhat fearsome beasts themselves, with rooster’s heads and snakes in place of legs. Others depict Lilith as bound in chains and helpless surrounded by the names of various Jewish patriarchs and luminaries. Some of the invocations found in bowls that were inscribed with the purpose of driving Lilith out of the house were written in the form of divorce papers, which is, you know, a choice.

    The need to protect children from Lilith was so prevalent an idea that some people argue that the word “lullaby” actually derives from the words written on the amulets hung on the walls of infants: “Lilith, abi!” which means “Lilith, begone!”

    Also Check: What Is The Biblical Meaning Of Sanctification

    Lilith Just Wanted To Be On Top

    The earliest version of what a modern reader would recognize as the Lilith legend comes from the collection of satirical proverbs known as The Alphabet of Ben Sirah, written sometime between the 8th and 11th centuries A.D. The story combines various elements from folk tradition and superstition into a cohesive whole that manages to make belief in the story of Lilith feel more Biblical and less, well, superstitious.

    According to Ben Sirah, when God said that it’s not good for man to be alone, he made a woman named Lilith out of the dust, just as he had done Adam, making her his equal. This, for medieval Jews, is where the problem started, because she refused to be subservient to Adam, especially in the bedroom department. Lilith specifically tells Adam that she wants to lie on top when they get all fruitful and multiplicative. Adam says no, because he’s the superior one so he should always both literally and figuratively be on top. Lilith naturally counters that they are equals because they were both made from the earth in God’s image. Adam refuses to compromise, and so Lilith shouts the unspeakable true name of God a curse that often has literally explosive effect in popular legend and flies away. Yes, flies. This is, admittedly, a pretty dramatic way for what is literally the first relationship on Earth to break up, but it’s still less traumatic than, for example, Midsommar.

    Was Lilith Adams First Wife Or A Result Of Confused History

    In early years, the passages of rabbinic texts and biblical passages made it clear that the creation of man identified two separate creations of woman. Additionally, it can be determined that the two were not considered to be the same woman because different processes were used to create them one woman was created at the same time as Adam, while the second was created from one of Adams ribs.

    It is thought that the early scholars struggled to identify the first wife of Adam and settled on a demon named Lilith to complete the story. If this is, indeed, the processed that was used to identify Lilith, it could mean that she was not Adams actual first wife though she was certainly a fearful demoness. It is important to note that all other knowledge of Lilith aside from this remains the same.

    Read Also: Bible Chronological Order

    Mankind Made From Clay

    Adam isn’t called by name until nearly the end of Chapter 2 , and his name is actually a clever play on words. Adam is created from the “dust of the ground” usually interpreted as earth or clay and the Hebrew word for “ground” is “adamah.” So Adam’s name is basically dirt.

    This is a common theme in creation myths the world over. In China, the goddess Nüwa took a walk among the majesties of creation, but she grew lonely, so she paused along the banks of a river and began to fashion creatures out of clay. After making a few animals, Nüwa got bored, and catching her beautiful reflection in the river, decided to create creatures in her own image and name them humans.

    In Ovid’s “Metamorphosis,” written in Ancient Rome, the gods first separated light from dark, then earth from sky, then created all of the animals before deciding to make “n animal with higher intellect, more noble, able one to rule the rest.” Borrowing from older mythological sources, Ovid credited Prometheus with making men “by mixing new-made earth with fresh rainwater and when he fashioned man, his mold recalled the masters of all things, the gods.”

    In one Egyptian creation myth, the god Amun commands the ram-headed god Khmun to create human beings “as a potter who molds clay on a potter’s wheel.” And according to Sumerian creation myths, which are some of the oldest on record, the primeval mother goddess Namma created mankind to do chores for the gods and birthed them by placing clay in her womb.

    Demons In The Gospels

    Lilith: In the Bible and Beyond

    You can see this in certain passages in the Gospels, for example in Luke 10:17-20:

    17 The seventy-two returned with joy, saying, Lord, even the demons are subject to us in your name! 18 And he said to them, I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. 19 Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt you. 20 Nevertheless, do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.

    or Mark 3:22-23.

    22 And the scribes who came down from Jerusalem were saying, He is possessed by Beelzebul, and by the prince of demons he casts out the demons. 23 And he called them to him and said to them in parables, How can Satan cast out Satan?

    The question is, of course, whether we still have demons in our modern world. And if so, what are they?

    Also Check: Maryland Bible College & Seminary Baltimore Md

    Lilith Queen Of The Vampires

    The fifth-century Latin translation of the Bible uses a word to translate the word “Lilith” in Isaiah that is preserved in certain English versions as well, including the Wycliffe Bible of 1395 and the Douay-Rheims Bible of the 16th century: lamia. While this word might be unfamiliar to most people, it should make absolute sense to those familiar with Greco-Roman mythology and folklore. To the Greeks and Romans, Lamia was the name of a queen who turned into a child-eating monster after Hera killed her children, though in more popular understanding the word “lamia” was a generic term for all kinds of child-frightening bogeywomen and/or seductresses who were half-snake, drank blood, and gave birth to monsters.

    The figure of Lilith obviously bears a striking resemblance to the lamia, and that includes the trait of drinking blood. Though the concept of vampires as we think of them is a relatively modern and European idea that has evolved over the years thanks to folklore, literature, movies, and other pop culture, nevertheless the blood-drinking winged first wife of Adam has perhaps inevitably come to be associated with vampires. In numerous modern pieces of culture, including , the 1996 movie Bordello of Blood, and Season 5 of True Blood, Lilith is depicted as a vampire queen, and even as the first vampire or the mother of all vampires. Being the baby-eating queen of Hell who births a hundred demons every day isn’t cool enough for some people, apparently.

    The Arslan Tash Amulets

    The Arslan Tash amulets are limestone plaques discovered in 1933 at Arslan Tash, the authenticity of which is disputed. William F. Albright, Theodor H. Gaster, and others, accepted the amulets as a pre-Jewish source which shows that the name Lilith already existed in the 7th century BC but Torczyner identified the amulets as a later Jewish source.

    Recommended Reading: Feeling Lonely Bible

    Paradise Lost Again And Again

    In many myth traditions, the first humans are immortal and live in a world free from sin, pain, work or death, but that paradisiacal spell is quickly broken.

    In Ovid’s “Metamorphosis,” the first age is described as “an age of gold: no law and no compulsion then were needed all kept faith the righteous way was freely willed.”

    But after Saturn is banished to Tartarus, the ruthless Jove takes over and creation passes through successively darker ages: silver, bronze and finally iron. “And this, the worst of ages, suddenly gave way to every foul impiety earth saw the flight of faith, modesty and truth and in their place came snares and fraud.”

    We also see this in the African creation myth known as The Origin of Death, where there was once a time before death and disease in which “Everybody was well and happy.” Then suddenly, out of nowhere, a man died. The people didn’t know what to do, so they told a worm to ask the gods how to respond. The sky gods told the worm to instruct the people to place the dead body in the fork of a tree and “throw mush at it” until it comes back to life. After that, there would be no death.

    HowStuffWorks earns a small affiliate commission when you purchase through links on our site.

    Her Origins Are In Mesopotamian Mythology

    Voice of The Prophetic: The Seed of the Serpent

    Lilith was likely derived from the ancient Sumerian myth of lilitu the demon spirits of men and women who passed young. Liliths more horrific aspects can be traced back to Lamashtu , the daughter of the Mesopotamian sky god Anu. Lamashtu was said to slay children and feast on men.

    Lilith also appears in The Epic of Gilgamesh , on a tablet dated to roughly 2000 BCE. There she is a demon that Gilgamesh forces to flee and take refuge in a desolate area, an element that remains consistent in her tale over time.

    Recommended Reading: Chronilogical Order Of Bible

    Samael In The Book Of Baruch

    Samael appears to first crop up during the Second Temple period, where he is incriminated as a major force of evil in the Apocalypse of Baruch , a non-canonical biblical book thought to be written by the scribe of Jeremiah, Baruch ben Neriah.

    The book describes itself as a narrative by Baruch, as he receives a revelation from God concerning ineffable things that have always been pondered on by man.

    In this account, Baruch praises God daily, asking why he has allowed Jerusalem to suffer capture and Dominion under King Nebuchadnezzar, but he does not receive a response. Instead, God sends one of his angels to show Baruch the mysteries of the heavens, and that in doing so, he hopes that Baruch will stop praying to him on this matter.

    Baruch agrees to this and is taken through the layers of heaven by the angel, each of which Baruch describes in great detail. By the time they reached the third layer, Baruch asks the angel to show him the tree had led Adam astray, and the angel tells him,

    It is the vine, which the angel Samael planted, whereat the Lord was angry, and he cursed him and his plant, while also on this account he did not permit Adam to touch it, and therefore, the devil being envious deceived him through this vine.3 Baruch 4: 8-9

    Furthermore, Samael in 4: 9 of this passage, is referred to as the devil, showing us that he becomes the embodiment of evil after having been cursed by God. He is again mentioned later in 9: 7, where the angel tells Baruch,

    Mans Long History Of Misogyny

    The story of Eve was invented to replace the story of Lilith.

    Eve was portrayed as subservient by the very nature of her being made from a rib of Adam.

    Thus demonstrating her status upon her creation so she could never be elevated to equal status , as Lilith was.

    Not much more to say about the old testament, most of it could have been excluded as superfluous in my opinion. The other stuff that was excluded was not important for this hub.

    The next Banned from the bible the lost history of. will add more detail and will really get the religious zealots going on another rampage.

    Don’t Miss: Verbal Abuse Bible Verses

    What Could She Look Like

    “A drawing and a few inscriptions indicate the appearance of a lilith as a young naked woman with long disheveled hair and prominent breasts and genitals . . .” .

    This description would make her something like a demonic version of a hermaphrodite. In humans, a hermaphrodite is a person who possesses a genetic defect that gives them both male and female sexual characteristics.

    RELATED ARTICLES

    Most Popular