Adam and Eve

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Christ is depicted raising Adam and Eve from the grave in this icon of the Resurrection.

Adam and Eve were, according to the Book of Genesis, the first-created man and woman. In the Septuagint (though not in liturgical texts or icons), Adam's wife is identified with the name Zoe ("life").

The story of the Fall of Man is the primary context in which Adam and Eve are remembered, and the suffering which they undergo as a result of having sinned against God by eating of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil they share together. Adam is traditionally identified as the one ultimately responsible for the introduction of sin into humanity, but in the creation accounts of Genesis, both Adam and Eve are listed as having been created without any sense of subordination of one to the other. Thus, Adam's place is not as a lord over Eve, but rather as the representative of the family. As such, he is her equal, but the introduction of human sin is placed at his feet.

In terms of their place in theology, Adam and Eve are the starting point for anthropology, which is the doctrine of the nature of mankind. Additionally, in terms of soteriology, Adam and Eve are seen as types of Christ and of his mother, the Theotokos, who are the New Adam and the New Eve, respectively.

Though the couple are remembered most for their sin, in many icons of the All Saints type, they are depicted as worshiping at the throne of God, and the traditional nimbus (halo) is around each of their heads. There are also many liturgical references to Christ's redemption of "the first-created," so the Church's tradition is clearly that they are among the saved. Many icons of the Resurrection depict Christ raising Adam and Eve out of their tombs.

See also

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