God having named the man, and called him Adam, which signifies red earth, Adam, in further token of dominion, named the woman, and called her Eve, that is, life. Adam bears the name of the dying body, Eve that of the living soul. The reason of the name is here given (some think, by Moses the historian, others, by Adam himself): Because she was (that is, was to be) the mother of all living. He had before called her Ishah—woman, as a wife; here he calls her Evah—life, as a mother. Now, 1. If this was done by divine direction, it was an instance of God’s favour, and, like the new naming of Abraham and Sarah, it was a seal of the covenant, and an assurance to them that, notwithstanding their sin and his displeasure against them for it, he had not reversed that blessing wherewith he had blessed them: Be fruitful and multiply. It was likewise a confirmation of the promise now made, that the seed of the woman, of this woman, should break the serpent’s head. 2. If Adam did it of himself, it was an instance of his faith in the word of God. Doubtless it was not done, as some have suspected, in contempt or defiance of the curse, but rather in a humble confidence and dependence upon the blessing. (1.) The blessing of a reprieve, admiring the patience of God, that he should spare such sinners to be the parents of all living, and that he did not immediately shut up those fountains of the human life and nature, because they could send forth no other than polluted, poisoned, streams. (2.) The blessing of a Redeemer, the promised seed, to whom Adam had an eye, in calling his wife Eve—life; for he should be the life of all the living, and in him all the families of the earth should be blessed, in hope of which he thus triumphs.
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