Genesis 4:17
Parallel Verses
New International Version
Cain made love to his wife, and she became pregnant and gave birth to Enoch. Cain was then building a city, and he named it after his son Enoch.

New Living Translation
Cain had sexual relations with his wife, and she became pregnant and gave birth to Enoch. Then Cain founded a city, which he named Enoch, after his son.

English Standard Version
Cain knew his wife, and she conceived and bore Enoch. When he built a city, he called the name of the city after the name of his son, Enoch.

New American Standard Bible
Cain had relations with his wife and she conceived, and gave birth to Enoch; and he built a city, and called the name of the city Enoch, after the name of his son.

King James Bible
And Cain knew his wife; and she conceived, and bare Enoch: and he builded a city, and called the name of the city, after the name of his son, Enoch.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Cain was intimate with his wife, and she conceived and gave birth to Enoch. Then Cain became the builder of a city, and he named the city Enoch after his son.

International Standard Version
Later, Cain had sexual relations with his wife. She became pregnant and gave birth to Enoch. Cain founded a city and named it after his son Enoch.

NET Bible
Cain had marital relations with his wife, and she became pregnant and gave birth to Enoch. Cain was building a city, and he named the city after his son Enoch.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Cain made love to his wife. She became pregnant and gave birth to Enoch. Cain was building a city, and he named it Enoch after his son.

Jubilee Bible 2000
And Cain knew his wife, and she conceived and bore Enoch; and he built a city and called the name of the city after the name of his son, Enoch.

King James 2000 Bible
And Cain knew his wife; and she conceived, and bore Enoch: and he built a city, and called the name of the city after the name of his son, Enoch.

American King James Version
And Cain knew his wife; and she conceived, and bore Enoch: and he built a city, and called the name of the city, after the name of his son, Enoch.

American Standard Version
And Cain knew his wife; and she conceived, and bare Enoch: and he builded a city, and called the name of the city, after the name of his son, Enoch.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And Cain knew his wife, and she conceived, and brought forth Henoch: and he built a city, and called the name thereof by the name of his son Henoch.

Darby Bible Translation
And Cain knew his wife, and she conceived and bore Enoch. And he built a city; and he called the name of the city after the name of his son Enoch.

English Revised Version
And Cain knew his wife; and she conceived, and bare Enoch: and he builded a city, and called the name of the city, after the name of his son, Enoch.

Webster's Bible Translation
And Cain knew his wife, and she conceived, and bore Enoch: and he built a city, and called the name of the city, after the name of his son Enoch.

World English Bible
Cain knew his wife. She conceived, and gave birth to Enoch. He built a city, and called the name of the city, after the name of his son, Enoch.

Young's Literal Translation
and Cain knoweth his wife, and she conceiveth, and beareth Enoch; and he is building a city, and he calleth the name of the city, according to the name of his son -- Enoch.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

4:16-18 Cain cast off all fear of God, and attended no more on God's ordinances. Hypocritical professors, who dissemble and trifle with God, are justly left to themselves to do something grossly scandalous. So they throw off that form of godliness to which they have been a reproach, and of which they deny the power. Cain went out from the presence of the Lord, and we never find that he came into it again, to his comfort. The land Cain dwelt in was called the land of Nod, which means, 'shaking,' or 'trembling,' and so shows the restlessness and uneasiness of his own spirit, or 'the land of a vagabond:' they that depart from God cannot find rest any where else. Those on earth who looked for the heavenly city, chose to dwell in tabernacles or tents; but Cain, as not minding that city, built one on earth. Thus all who are cursed of God seek their settlement and satisfaction here below.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 17. - Domiciled in Nod, whither, impelled by woman's love, his wife had accompanied him, the unhappy fugitive began to seek, if not to find, relief from the gnawing agonies of remorse in the endearments of conjugal felicity and the occupations of secular industry. And Cain knew his wife. Who must have been his sister, and married before the death of Abel, as "after that event it can scarcely be supposed, that any woman would be willing to connect herself with such a miserable fratricide" (Bush). Though afterwards forbidden, the tendency of Divine legislation on the subject of marriage being always in the direction of enlarging rather than restricting the circle of prohibited relationships, the union of brothers and sisters at the first was clearly indispensable, if the race was to multiply outwards from a common stock. "Even in much later times, and among very civilized nations, such alliances were not considered incestuous. The Athenian law made it compulsory to marry the sister if she had not found a husband at a certain age. Abraham married his half-sister, Sarah; and the legislator Moses himself was the offspring of-a matrimony which he later interdicted as unholy" (Kalisch). And she conceived. For even from the unbelieving and unthankful, the disobedient and the repro. bate, God's providential mercies are not entirely withheld (Psalm 145:9; Matthew 5:45). And bare Enoch. Chanoch, "dedicated," "initiated," from chanach, to instruct (Proverbs 22:6) and to consecrate (Deuteronomy 20:5; 1 Kings 8:63). Candlish detects in the name the impious pride of the first murderer; with more charity, Keil and Kalisch see a promise of the renovation of his life. The latter thinks that Cain called his son "Initiated" or "Instructed" to intimate that he intended to instruct him from his early years in the duties of virtue, and his city "Dedicated" to signify that he now recognized that "the firstling of his social prosperity belongs to God." If Luther's conjecture be correct, that the child received its name from its mother, it will touchingly express that young mother's hope that the child whom God had sent might be an augury of blessing for their saddened home, and her resolution both to consecrate him from his youth to God and to instruct him in God's fear and worship. And he builded. Literally, was building, i.e. began to build, "but never finished, leading still a runagate life, and so often constrained to leave the work, as the giants did who built the tower of Babel" (Willet). A city. Vater, Hartmann, and Bohlen discover in the city-building of Cain "a main proof of the mythical contents of the narrative," an advanced state of civilization "utterly unsuitable to so early a period;" but ancient tradition (Phoenician, Egyptian, and Hellenic) is unanimous in ascribing to the first men the invention of agriculture and the arts, with the discovery of metals, the origin of music, &c. (vide Havernick's 'Intro.,' § 16). Of course the עִיר which Cain erected was not a city according to modern ideas, but a keep or fort, enclosed with a wall for the defense of those who dwelt within (Murphy). It was the first step in the direction of civilization, and Kalisch notes it as a deep trait in the Biblical account that the origin of cities is ascribed not to the nomad, but to the agriculturist. Impelled by the necessities of his occupation to have a fixed residence, he would likewise in course of time be constrained by the multiplication of his household to insure their protection and comfort. It is possible also that his attempt to found a city may have been dictated by a desire to bid defiance to the curse which doomed him to a wandering life; to create for his family and himself a new point of interest outside the holy circle of Eden, and to find an outlet for those energies and powers of which, as an early progenitor of the race, he must have been conscious, and in the restless activity of which oblivion for his misery could alone be found. If so, it explains the action which is next recorded of him, that he called the name of the city after the name of his son, Enoch. I.e. he consecrated it to the realization of these his sinful hopes and schemes.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

And Cain knew his wife,.... Who this woman was is not certain, nor whether it was his first wife or not; whether his sister, or one that descended from Adam by another of his sons, since this was about the one hundred and thirtieth year of the creation. At first indeed Cain could marry no other than his sister; but whether he married Abel's twin sister, or his own twin sister, is disputed; the Jews say (g), that Cain's twin sister was not a beautiful woman, and therefore he said, I will kill my brother and take his wife: on the other hand, the Arabic writers say (h), that Adam would have had Cain married Abel's twin sister, whom they call Awin; and Abel have married Cain's twin sister, whom they call Azron; but Cain would not, because his own sister was the handsomest; and this they take to be the occasion of the quarrel, which issued in the murder of Abel.

And she conceived and bare Enoch; which signifies "trained up", not in the true religion, and in the ways of God and godliness, as one of this name descending from Seth was, who is said to walk with God; but in the practices of his father Cain, and in a wicked course of life:

and he builded a city: for a settlement on earth, thinking of nothing but this world, and the things of it; or to secure himself from being slain by men; or it may be for his amusement, to divert his thoughts from the melancholy scene always presented to his mind, by being thus employed; and his posterity growing numerous, he took this method to keep them together, and that they might be able to defend themselves from the assaults of others. Some render the words, "he was building a city" (i); as if he did not live to finish it; but it looks as if it was finished by him, by what follows:

and called the name of the city, after the name of his son, Enoch: not after his own name, which was odious and infamous, but after his son's name, to show his affection to him, and that his name might be continued in ages to come; see Psalm 49:11. This was the first city that was built, that we read of. Sir Walter Raleigh conjectures (k) that the Henochii or Heniochi of Pliny, Ptolemy, and other writers, took their name from this city of Henoch, or from the country where it stood, when it was repeopled after the flood, since these people were due east from the garden of Eden. (For Cain to marry his sister or any other close relation was not harmful as it is today. There would be few if any genetic disorders at this time. However, as time past, the human race accumulated more and more genetic defects, so by the time of Moses, the laws against incest, as given in Leviticus 18:1, were necessary. These laws helped prevent deformed children. Ed.)

(g) Pirke Eliezer, c. 21. (h) Abulpharag. Hist. Dynast. p. 4. Patricides apud Selden, de Jure Nat. & Gent. l. 3. c. 2. & l. 5. c. 9. (i) "et fuit aedificans", Montanus, Drusius; "era aedificans". Fagius; so Ainsworth; "studebat aedificare", Junius & Tremellius. (k) History of the World, par. 1. B. 1. c. 5. sect. 2. p. 43.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

17-22. builded a city—It has been in cities that the human race has ever made the greatest social progress; and several of Cain's descendants distinguished themselves by their inventive genius in the arts.

Genesis 4:17 Additional Commentaries
Context
The Descendants of Cain
17Cain had relations with his wife and she conceived, and gave birth to Enoch; and he built a city, and called the name of the city Enoch, after the name of his son. 18Now to Enoch was born Irad, and Irad became the father of Mehujael, and Mehujael became the father of Methushael, and Methushael became the father of Lamech.…
Cross References
Genesis 4:16
So Cain went out from the LORD's presence and lived in the land of Nod, east of Eden.

Genesis 4:18
To Enoch was born Irad, and Irad was the father of Mehujael, and Mehujael was the father of Methushael, and Methushael was the father of Lamech.

Psalm 49:11
Their tombs will remain their houses forever, their dwellings for endless generations, though they had named lands after themselves.
Treasury of Scripture

And Cain knew his wife; and she conceived, and bore Enoch: and he built a city, and called the name of the city, after the name of his son, Enoch.

Enoch.

Genesis 5:18,22 And Jared lived an hundred sixty and two years, and he begat Enoch…

and he.

Genesis 11:4 And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and a tower, whose top …

Ecclesiastes 2:4-11 I made me great works; I built me houses; I planted me vineyards…

Daniel 4:30 The king spoke, and said, Is not this great Babylon, that I have …

Luke 17:28,29 Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, …

the name.

2 Samuel 18:18 Now Absalom in his lifetime had taken and reared up for himself a …

Psalm 49:11 Their inward thought is, that their houses shall continue for ever, …

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