This is part of an ongoing republication of Vilas Deane’s Vi the Bible Guy series from the original Southview website. Three questions and three answers will get put up each Wednesday at 8AM, so be sure to set your clocks!
Q1: What kind of money did they have in the Old Testament? Where did they get it?
Bartering was commonly used in trading. However, gold, silver and copper were weighed and put into standard units and used as money. In Gen. 37:28 we find that Joseph was sold for “twenty pieces of silver,” i.e, 20 shekels of silver by weight. Coinage appeared as early as 1500 B.C in Egypt. Achan (in Joshua 7, about 1400 B.C.) stole a known amount: 200 shekels of silver (about 5 pounds) and 50 shekels of gold (about 1.25 pounds). In the Aegean Sea area, a talent was the value of an ox and was formed into pellets or rings of gold weighing 6.3 ounces. A copper ingot of the same value weighed 60 pounds. At about 450 B.C., Ezra (in Ezra 8:27) mentions a coin, the “daric,” a Persian gold coin named after Darius I (521-486 B.C.) having a value a little more than a shekel. Archaelogists have found coins dating to the 6th or 7th century B.C.
Q2: Where did Cain and Abel’s wives come from?
Gen 1:28: God blessed them [Adam and Eve] and said to them “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it.”
Gen 3:20: “Adam named his wife Eve, because she would become the mother of all the living.”
Adam lived 930 years. (Gen 5:5) Jewish tradition believes that Adam and Eve had 33 sons and twenty-three daughters. Since Eve was the mother of all living, Abel and Seth must have married a sister, (or perhaps a niece) and so did the other sons. The divine prohibition against incest was not given until the time of Moses (Deut 27:22). At Adam’s time the lives had rich genetic diversity and did not yet have the accumulated genetic mutations that would have existed many years later, so the marriage to a sister did not include the later dangerous physical matters.
Q3: Will our pets be in Heaven? How old will we be in Heaven?
How old will we be? I don’t know! But we won’t be “showing our age” with its accompanying health problems. The Bible doesn’t tell us what age we will be, but I suspect that it will be a “perfect age.” I’ll just have to trust God in this matter.
Pets? Our pets die because the whole earth is under the curse because of sin. (Gen 3:17-19 and Rom 8:20) However, I don’t think that we will miss those pets in Heaven (if they aren’t there) for that would make us sad, and God will not let us be sad in heaven. In all of this we must just trust Him: John 14:1: “Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me.”