Adam had relations with his wife again; and she gave birth to a son, and named him Seth, for she said, “God has appointed me another offspring in place of Abel, for Cain killed him.” Genesis 4:25 (NASB)
The older son killed his younger brother. Can you imagine Adam and Eve’s grief as they processed Abel’s murder and Cain’s exile? God had said the consequences of their disobedience in the garden of Eden would be painful, but how could they have foreseen such heartbreak? And how would they recover from such a tragedy?
God sent a baby.
The Bible doesn’t give us much information about Adam and Eve’s third son, Seth. His name is mentioned only nine times in Scripture, primarily in genealogies. The tidbits provided in Genesis 4, however, give us intriguing glimpses of this godly man.
First, Eve recognized God’s hand in Seth’s birth. She and Adam mistakenly assumed the “offspring” that would crush the serpent’s head would be their firstborn, Cain (cf. Genesis 3:15, Genesis 4:1). But when Seth was born, they realized God had ordained a different plan, and they named this son Seth, which means “compensation” or “placing, setting in the stead of another.” What a beautiful picture of Jesus, whom God appointed to take our place, bear our sins, and bring about our redemption.
Second, Genesis 4:26 tells us that during Seth’s lifetime “people began to call on the name of the Lord.” This statement marks the time when those of Seth’s line began to worship God in a way that honored him, as Seth’s slain brother Abel had worshiped God.
Seth, then, represents Jesus, the Redeemer, as well as all those who worship Jesus as their redeemer. In these two ways, Seth symbolizes God’s great plan to transform every sorrow into joy, every tragedy into triumph.
Are you, like Adam and Eve, grieving an inexplicable loss? Here’s the hope we have as children of God: He will surely bring a Seth. His great plan of redemption—for the world, for your family, for you—cannot be thwarted. All the good he has appointed for you will come to pass (see Isaiah 61:1–3; Joel 2:25–27).
Turn to him in your time of sorrow, of confusion, of anger. Lay all your feelings out before him, then wait for him to set in place his new plan.
Read Genesis 4. Describe the roller coaster of emotions Adam and Eve rode during the years between Cain’s birth and Seth’s birth. In what ways do you identify with their experiences?
Read the genealogy provided in Luke 3:23–38. What names do you recognize? How did God show his faithfulness down through those centuries? How has he shown his faithfulness in your family?
Read Joel 2:23–27. What promises did God give his people in this passage? Do you believe he will also “repay you” for what you have lost? Why?
Denise K. Loock
This devotion is part of our series, Not-As-Famous Men and Women of the Bible.
 “H8352 – Šēṯ – Strong’s Hebrew Lexicon (KJV).” Blue Letter Bible. Accessed 12 Apr, 2021. https://www.blueletterbible.org//lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=H8352&t=KJV