The earliest text referring to Lilith as the first wife of Adam comes from the medieval text titled The Alphabet of ben Sirach which scholars date as being written anywhere between 700 and 1000 CE. This work however was never understood as or treated as revealed or inspired scripture, rather the work was written and treated as a satire. It is from within this text alone that we are told the story of Lilith being Adam’s first wife who refused to submit to her husband. “While God created Adam, who was alone, He said, ‘It is not good for man to be alone’ (Genesis 2:18). He also created a woman, from the earth, as He had created Adam himself, and called her Lilith. Adam and Lilith immediately began to fight. She said, ‘I will not lie below,’ and he said, ‘I will not lie beneath you, but only on top. For you are fit only to be in the bottom position, while I am to be the superior one.’ Lilith responded, ‘We are equal to each other inasmuch as we were both created from the earth.’ But they would not listen to one another. When Lilith saw this, she pronounced the Ineffable Name and flew away into the air.” – The Alphabet of ben Sirach, fifth response to King Nebuchadnezzar.
Adam, Lilith, & Eve
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