by Walter R. Mattfeld
Some Liberal PhD scholars trained in biblical studies and ancient Mesopotamian myths understand that the Garden of Eden story is a Hebrew recast of Mesopotamian myths which explained how man came to be created and where, and how he acquired godly-forbidden knowledge but was denied immortality.
All this was figured out over 100 years ago and published (in 1887 by Professor A.H. Sayce of Oxford University). Man was created to care for the gods' city-gardens surrounded by a plain called edin in the Sumerian language. The gods had built cities to live in _before_ man's creation. The gods had bodies of flesh and could die if they did not eat food grown in their city-gardens watered by irrigation canals from the Euphrates and Tigris.
They tired of this work, it was back-breaking! So they created man to bear the back-breaking work in their gardens of edin! Man is portrayed in Sumerian art forms as working in their gardens in a state of nakedness like Adam.
The gods didn't want man at first to possess their knowledge, the Sumerian _me_ (pronounced may)the secret workings of Heaven and Earth including laws about good and evil, right and wrong. At Eridu in Sumer, next door to Ur of the Chaldees where Abraham lived and Ea was worshiped, a man (Adapa) is warned by his god Ea "not to eat of food of death or he will die," prefiguring Yahweh's warning to Adam. Both men, Adapa and Adam, are blamed for losing out on obtaining immortality for themselves and for mankind.
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