The Serpent's Seed
William Branham taught a version of the original sin that was highly unorthodox and which is referred to by his followers as the "serpent's seed" or "serpent seed" doctrine. It requires reading into the scripture something that is not evident in a plain reading of the text.
This doctrine is comprised of the following related beliefs:
- The original sin in the Garden of Eden was not eating a fruit, it was a sexual sin;
- Eve's sin was not disobedience, but sexual intercourse;
- The serpent was an upright beast, effectively the "missing link";
- Cain and Abel were maternal non-identical twins:
- Cain was the son of Eve and the serpent; and
- Abel was the son of Eve and Adam.
The serpent's seed doctrine is based on a few scriptures that can be used in isolation to support a position that is not supportable when viewed in the context of ALL scripture.
Does the New Testament Teach the Serpent's Seed doctrine?
2 Corinthians 11:2-3
The KJV states:
- For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ. But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.
From the wording, message followers argue that this demonstrates that while Christians need to avoid having their minds corrupted, Eve experienced a physical corruption. But is that what the passage actually states?
Let us look at a couple of other translations:
- NASB - For I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy; for I betrothed you to one husband, so that to Christ I might present you as a pure virgin. But I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds will be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ.
- NIV -I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy. I promised you to one husband, to Christ, so that I might present you as a pure virgin to him. But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent’s cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ.
- CEB - I’m deeply concerned about you with the same concern that God has. As your father, I promised you in marriage to one husband. I promised to present you as an innocent virgin to Christ himself. But I’m afraid that your minds might be seduced in the same way as the snake deceived Eve with his devious tricks. You might be unable to focus completely on a genuine and innocent commitment to Christ.
Does this passage state that the relationship between Eve and Satan was physical? Such an interpretation reads into the text more than it actually says. A common way that scripture is misinterpreted is when we draw wrong conclusions from the text by reading into the text what isn’t there. what we need to do is draw out from the text only what is there.
The sole characteristic of the serpent mentioned by Paul is his deviousness. It was by his words that the serpent deceived her in the Genesis account, a point Paul implies in that it is by what the enemies of the Gospel preach that the Corinthians are led astray. This viewpoint is supported in a closely parallel passage where Paul writes of “those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned … By smooth talk and flattery they deceive the minds of naive people … The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet” (Rom 16:17–18, 20). The references in 2 Cor 11:3 and Rom 16:18, 20 to
- (1) “the serpent” (i.e., Satan—v. 14),
- (2) “crush Satan,” and
- (3) “deceive” tie both passages back to Genesis 2–3 and to each other.
Paul sees words—erroneous in content but smooth of delivery—as Satan’s instrument to seduce the church from her loyalty to Christ.
The KJV states that God "hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth."
Translations into modern English also make it very clear:
- And he made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined allotted periods and the boundaries of their dwelling place.
- And He made from one [common origin, one source, one blood] all nations of men to settle on the face of the earth, having definitely determined [their] allotted periods of time and the fixed boundaries of their habitation (their settlements, lands, and abodes)... 
- From one man he made every nation living on the entire surface of the earth, and he fixed the limits of their territories and the periods when they would flourish.
The Serpent seed doctrine requires that a person reject Acts 17:26 because it requires the belief that the serpent injected his blood into the human race. That's 2 bloods, not one. That's two origins not one, and two sources, not one.
This is also another case where William Branham can't keep his doctrines straight. He said:
- If you were a--a Chinese or a colored man or whoever it is, that God made of one blood of all men. But, you know, they put a speck of animal blood in you it would kill you? And no animal can take... use one another's blood, from one specie to another. See how God made us? We never come from animal; We come from God. God made us in His own Image. 
But then he completely goes against this when he states:
- It wasn't apples that Adam and Eve ate; it was absolutely sexual things that had separated them and divided them, and knowing that they become...?... and through the blood of Adam, and through the blood of the serpent that had started this... 
The problem is that anyone plagued by Cognitive Dissonance can't see this.
Paul said that "as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men..."
That one man was Adam, not Cain. Not one woman, not one serpent. One man - Adam.
- So then, just as sin entered the world through one man and death through sin, and so death spread to all people.
- Sin came into the world through one man, and his sin brought death with it. As a result, death has spread to the whole human race because everyone has sinned.
If you believe the Serpent's seed is physical, you deny the truth of Romans 5:12
If you believe the Serpent Seed doctrine, ask yourself the following questions
The Serpent's Seed doctrine requires that you accept the following beliefs that you may not be aware are part of this doctrine. In our view, these beliefs eventually lead to the rejection of the Bible as the true, inspired, word of God.
- “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness...”
Here are a few of the traps:
Was the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil really Satan's Tree?
William Branham stated:
- Notice, the children of obedience, and disobedience, has nothing in common. The disobedience worship their god. "Oh," they say, "we believe the Bible." Yes, it's a mixed tree. See, they add the world and knowledge to It. Satan's tree, mixed; see, she took from Satan's tree, good and evil. "Oh, we believe the Word." Sure, but not all of It. Eve believed the Word, too, but let--let Satan take his tree and pervert It a little bit. That's what it is.
How could the tree be Satan's tree when God created it?
Or is the tree Satan himself?
William Branham taught that the tree of the knowledge of good and evil was Satan or the serpent:
- The Bread of Life was from the Tree of Life, where they was eating, from the garden of Eden. He was the Tree of Life. Now, if the Tree of Life was a Person, then the tree of knowledge was a person. Now, say the serpent didn't have a seed. If life come by man, death come by the woman. All right, she was the tree of death. 
- Now that we have come this far, let me try to crystallize your thinking on this subject so you can see the necessity of our going into the 'serpent seed doctrine' as I have. We start with the fact that there were TWO trees in the midst of the garden. The Tree of Life was Jesus. The other tree is definitely Satan because of what came forth of the fruit of that tree. Now then, we know that both of those trees had a relationship to man or they would never have been placed there. 
According to 1 Timothy 2:14, Adam was not deceived. Serpent seed theology interprets Eve eating the fruit as actually having sex with the serpent, a male. Since Adam also ate of this fruit, accepting this theory is to make the claim that Adam purposely committed a homosexual act with the serpent. William Branham's followers suggest that Adam eating of the fruit was a sex act with Eve. But if the tree was Satan or the serpent, wouldn't the fruit have to be the same thing that Eve participated in? Sex with the serpent?
If Eve was the one who the serpent had sex with, was it not Eve who offered Adam the fruit? Note the same fruit and the same tree. If the fruit is sex with the serpent, then the fruit stays sex with the serpent.
How could a man having sex with his own wife be sin? Does that make any sense?
Obviously, this is nonsense - which is why message believers are quick to reject this obvious conclusion, and why serpent seed is clearly a false doctrine.
If Serpent's Seed is wrong, accepting it means you are bearing false witness against Adam in that he had sex with the serpent.
Did Eve commit adultery?
As mentioned above, Serpent's Seed teaches that Eve had sex with the serpent. Since she was married, it would mean that she committed adultery. The Bible does not teach that.
If the Serpent's Seed doctrine is wrong, it constitutes bearing false witness against Eve.
If Eve committed adultery, don't you think that the Bible would have just come out and said it?
What about the other trees?
The Bible states in Genesis 2:15-17 and Genesis 3:1-7:
- The LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it. And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, “You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.”
- He said to the woman, “Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?” And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, but God said, ‘You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.’ ” But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths.
What are we supposed to think about the conversation with the serpent in which he asked Eve whether all the trees were off-limits and she replied that they were all allowed to be eaten from except That one?
If eating of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil was actually a sex act with the serpent, what was eating of the other trees?
Could Adam and Eve have sex with every tree (other animals?) except the serpent?
Did Adam watch his wife have sex with the serpent?
The KJV states in Genesis 3:6 that:
- ...she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat. 
What does the phrase "with her" mean?
Let's look at a couple of other Bible translations:
- ...she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. 
- ...she took some of its fruit and ate it. She also gave some of it to her husband who was with her, and he ate it.
- Then she gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it, too.
Are we to believe that Adam watched his wife and the serpent get it on while he watched? That is effectively what William Branham taught if you read the Bible as it is written. Of course, if the serpent seed doctrine is wrong, then this passage makes a lot more sense.
Was Cain Was The Son of the Serpent?
Genesis 4:1 is clear that Adam is Cain’s father:
- KJV - And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD.
- ESV - Now Adam knew Eve his wife, and she conceived and bore Cain, saying, “I have gotten a man with the help of the LORD.”
- NET - Now the man had marital relations with his wife Eve, and she became pregnant and gave birth to Cain. Then she said, “I have created a man just as the LORD did!”
The Serpent’s Seed doctrine completely ignores or dismisses this verse as false in order to uphold their theory. William Branham said that this was proved by the fact that the Bible says that Enoch was the seventh from Adam. But if you read our article on the subject, you will realize that William Branham again twisted scripture to his own ends.
The Serpent’s Seed doctrine says this verse is 100% false, forcing you to deny another portion of scripture and call God a liar.
Cain Was Conceived Inside of The Garden
According to the Serpent’s Seed doctrine, Cain was conceived inside of the Garden when Adam and Eve had sex with the Serpent. However, as we read above, Genesis 4:1 is clear that Adam and Eve were outside of the garden when Cain was conceived. The Serpent’s Seed doctrine says this is 100% false, forcing you to deny another portion of scripture and call the Holy Spirit a liar.
Cain Is Not In Adam’s Genealogy
Again, Genesis 4:1 is clear that Adam is Cain’s father. If you read all of Genesis 4, the rest of Cain’s genealogy is there. This is another belief that makes you deny a portion of scripture.
William Branham's KKK connection
Roy E. Davis was William Branham's first pastor. He was also a member of the Klu Klux Klan (KKK). One of the doctrines of the KKK is Serpent Seed. It justifies racial hatred and abuse, as well as the oppression of women. William Branham learned this doctrine from Roy Davis, and it was reinforced in his family by his mother-in-law.
How did the seed of the serpent get through the flood?
William Branham taught that Ham was of the seed of the serpent:
- For instance, many of them, like how that formal religion began in Cain. How it come on out and come down through the sons of Noah, Ham. Out of Ham, he had Nimrod. Nimrod built the tower of Babel. Babel comes on down through King Nebuchadnezzar’s time, and on out into Revelation, Babylon. How that little seed started way back there at the east side of the gates of Eden, coming on down, winding out. All kinds of cults and everything started back there, winding themselves out to the end.
- Now, the church, the—the nominal believers like Lot, he’s going through the tribulation period (see?) and be saved as if it was by fire. Noah went through the tribulation period, carried above it, come out with Ham who polluted the earth again. See? Lot came out, his own daughters slept with him, and had children by his own daughters. See? But Abraham brought forth the Royal Seed, brought forth the Seed of the promise. Enoch went to glory in the rapture, just took a walk and went home. He never went through the tribulation period. You see?
But this makes no sense! If Shem, Ham and Japheth were brothers of the same mother and father, how could Ham be of the wicked one, genetically different from his brothers?
There are quite a few logical problems when it comes to accepting the the Serpent’s Seed doctrine teachings. There are no rules when it comes to interpreting scripture, so they interpret whatever they want, however they want.
Only some things are symbolic?
Why is the fruit and the tree symbolic and everything else in Genesis is real?
Why don't message followers see the story of Abraham, Jacob, Joseph, Noah, Enoch, or Moses as allegories? Are they not all stories, which Genesis holds as a reliable accurate testimony, of real literal events of the history of the world, mankind and it's fall and beginning stages of redemption? Why not see Joseph's coat of many colors as not a real coat, but merely a symbol? How about Abraham as he walked up that proverberial mountain to sacrifice his son on that 'altar'?
Do you see the folly in adding or subtracting from God's revelation by a novel interpretation that allows for many other novel doctrines to slip into the Bible? There is no consistency of interpretation within the Christian faith when you allow for any chapter of Genesis, which is literal history, to be interpreted as an allegory. Why? Because it damages the literal meaning of the text. God's revelation is on the pages of scripture, not between the lines. God's revelation to us is His written Word.
If don't believe God's Word when it states that Adam and Eve ate a literal fruit, then you effectively doubt the Word of God. You are effectively asking, "Did God really say?"
One problem with accepting the serpent seed doctrine stems from how we view 'symbols' and their covenantal relationship between God and man.
The 'serpent seed doctrine' is inconsistent with the redemptive framework of scripture. Was it not the ark of the covenant, a literal ark, which when touched outside of the limits of God's commands killed the man who touched it? Is not the actual rainbow in the sky a covenant promise to humanity? There are numerous examples of real physical 'relics' or 'symbols' which are not concealed forms of truth. Rather they are carriers of very real blessings or curses.
When God makes vows to mankind in the Old Testament, there were very real physical objects involved. So why is it so problematic that God chose to use literal trees and fruits to carry covenantal blessings or curses which carried very real physical and spiritual consequences?
Are you going to question whether or not Samson's hair really had anything to do with the loss of his supernatural strength? We must realize that, as Christians, we need to be consistent in our defense of scripture and we should never make arguments from the grounds of plausibility.
So if you stand upon an allegorical interpretation, then why not be consistent and interpret the rest of Genesis the same way? Whose standard are you using to interpret Genesis 3 to 5? If the Bible itself does not guide us to interpret Genesis that way, but you claim your authority comes from William Branham, then you are standing on the same foundation as Catholics do - namely, that they need an external authority to truly know how to understand the scriptures.
If the tree of good and evil was an act and not an actual tree, why did God place the angel to guard the garden of Eden so that Adam and Eve wouldn't touch the tree of life?
Would that not have been a spiritual act or revelation also?
The problem with sinful genes
The Serpent’s Seed doctrine teaches that the serpent passed his sinful genes down to Cain, which is why he murdered Abel. But the Bible states in Romans 5:19:
- For as by the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man's obedience the many will be made righteous.
What the Bible really says is that Cain's problems weren't genetic, they were spiritual! They resulted from disobedience.
If the Tree of Knowledge is Satan, then???
The Serpent’s Seed doctrine teaches that the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil was Satan. It also interprets eating from this tree as having sex with the Serpent.
But what about the Tree of Life. Traditionally the Tree of Life is compared to Christ while also being a literal tree. If you follow the Serpent’s Seed, do you also believe that Adam and Eve had permission to have sex with the Tree of Life? Did God put cherubim around the tree to keep Adam and Eve from having sex with the good tree?
These are some of the strange places that this doctrine leads!
The Bible states that:
- Such is the way of an adulterous woman;
- She eateth, and wipeth her mouth,
- And saith, I have done no wickedness.
Message preachers use this scripture to justify the serpent's seed doctrine by saying that the sexual act is likened to the eating of a fruit.
Unfortunately, there are a couple of problems with this rationale:
- There is NO direct reference to the eating of a fruit and, in particular, the eating of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. What the author of Proverbs has done in the passage is to associate behavior that is out of bounds with eating; depicting a sexual appetite that knows no restraint. In Proverbs 30:14, the act of eating is associated with the persecution of the poor and needy. The fact is that the author of the book of Proverbs uses the metaphor of eating in other situations and not solely to depict the sexual act.
- Wiping her mouth after eating means that the adulteress treats sexual liaisons the same way she does eating: she just finishes up and goes home without a care and certainly without a sense of guilt. Again, the author uses the metaphor of eating to illustrate the woman's attitude and not to make a statement about sex being like eating.
- The whole point of the metaphor is to illustrate the way that this woman thinks of her sin. People look at adultery and state, "That is a terrible thing" and ask, "How can she live with herself?" Yet for her it is no big deal. Yes, the first time she did it, it was probably quite something but no longer. Her conscience has been seared.
- There are other metaphors of eating in the Book of Proverbs that have nothing to do with sex:
- ...therefore they shall eat the fruit of their way, and have their fill of their own devices.
- A man shall eat good by the fruit of his mouth: But the soul of the transgressors shall eat violence.
- She looks well to the ways of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.
How could the fruit of the tree be sex with Eve when the tree preceded her?
If the fruit of the tree represented a sexual act with Eve, then how could it have existed before Eve did? It just doesn't make sense.
- Then the Lord God took the man and put him into the garden of Eden to cultivate it and keep it. The Lord God commanded the man, saying, “From any tree of the garden you may eat freely; but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not [n]eat, for in the day that you eat from it you will surely die.”
Why wasn't Jesus born of sex?
A message follower asked the following question: Why wasn't Jesus born of sex?
The reason for asking this question is that message followers think it gives validity to the arguments for the doctrine of the serpent's seed. But this simply isn't true.
The best response to this question, when posed by a message follower, is simply the following question: Who was the father of Jesus?
Since God the Father does not have a body, how could he have possibly had sex with a woman? It seems logical that if an infinite spiritual being wanted to come to earth as a baby he would simply create a body in the womb of a woman. It is significant that qualities such as those attributed to the Greek gods (like sexuality) are not ascribed to God in the Bible.
Eve was an after-thought?
William Branham frequently said of the woman, “She was not part of the original creation. She was a by-product, designed by Satan, to deceive by.” By taking Genesis 1 and Genesis 2 together and by reading them carefully, we can see that this is an error. God created both male and female, one from the dust of the ground and the other from a rib. Both were part of God's creation, which was said to be very good.
Was the tree of knowledge a fruit tree or something else?
Genesis 3:6 states
- So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food...
What part about being "good for food" makes eating the fruit of the tree a sexual act? This is probably the clearest sign of a false doctrine that there is in the serpent seed doctrine.
This is even clearer in other versions:
- When the woman saw that the tree produced fruit that was good for food...
- The woman was convinced. She saw that the tree was beautiful and its fruit looked delicious, and she wanted the wisdom it would give her.
Why was the ground cursed?
We are asked by message followers the following question: If adultery wasn't the original sin, why do you believe God cursed Eve in childbearing specifically?
But a similar question could be asked with respect to Adam which is equally as relevant: If eating a literal fruit was not the original sin, why was the ground cursed for Adam's sake and why did the ground bear thorns and thistles for him, making it difficult to till the soil?
- To Adam he said, “Because you listened to your wife and ate fruit from the tree about which I commanded you, ‘You must not eat from it,’
- “Cursed is the ground because of you;
- through painful toil you will eat food from it
- all the days of your life.
- It will produce thorns and thistles for you,
- and you will eat the plants of the field.
- By the sweat of your brow
- you will eat your food
- until you return to the ground,
- since from it you were taken;
- for dust you are
- and to dust you will return.”
Cain was of the wicked one?
The Bible states that:
- Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother’s righteous. 
William Branham interprets this as follows:
- Before Adam ever had carnal knowledge of Eve, the serpent had that knowledge ahead of him. And that one born of it was Cain. Cain was of (born of, begotten of) that "Wicked One". I John 3:12. The Holy Spirit in John could not in one place call Adam the "Wicked One" (for that is what he would be if he fathered Cain) and in another place call Adam the "Son of God" which he was by creation. Luke 3:38. Cain turned out in character like his father, a bringer of death, a murderer. His utter defiance of God when faced by the Almighty in Genesis 4:5,9,13,14, show him to be absolutely unhuman-like in characteristics, seeming even to surpass any account we have in Scripture concerning a confrontation of Satan by God.
Does the Bible say that Cain was "born of" the Wicked One?
But what the apostle John is saying in his epistle is that Cain literally, "belonged to the evil one", just as Jesus’ opponents in the Fourth Gospel “belong to your father, the devil” who “was a murderer from the beginning” (John 8:44), and just as John’s opponents were “the children of the devil” (1 John 3:10).
John is not stating that his opponents were genetically of the serpent. Their problem was spiritual, just as Cain's was.
The key to really understanding scripture is context. Isolating verses and taking them out of context leads to all sorts of interpretational problems.
Heb 11:4 states, “By faith Abel offered to God a more acceptable sacrifice than did Cain”; and Jude 10–11 says that those who revile what they do not understand “have gone on the path of Cain.”
John’s statement that Cain “belonged to the evil one” reflects Jesus’ words regarding those who were trying to murder him: “You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desire. He was a murderer from the beginning” (John 8:44). Verse 13 echoes John 15:18–19: “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.” There are also a number of lesser references (cf. John 3:7; 5:28, 38).
John's description of Cain as one ‘who belonged to the evil one’ has no parallel in the Genesis account, but in some Jewish texts (e.g., the second-century-b.c. T. Benjamin 7:1–5 and the first- or second-century-a.d. Apocalypse of Abraham 24:3–5) the murder of Abel by his brother Cain is regarded as an act inspired by the devil. The evil character of Cain is universally assumed in both biblical and extrabiblical sources. The apostle John, too, works on this assumption when he adds: And why did he murder him? Because his own actions were evil and his brother’s were righteous. The text of Genesis, while implying that it was because Cain’s actions were evil that his offering was not accepted by the Lord, and that it was because of Abel’s righteous actions that the Lord accepted his offering, does not specify the nature of their respective actions. However, the writer to the Hebrews, reflecting on the text of Genesis 4, notes that: ‘By faith Abel offered God a better sacrifice than Cain did. By faith he was commended as a righteous man, when God spoke well of his offerings’ (Heb 11:4). As far as that writer was concerned, what differentiated Abel from Cain was the former’s faith and, presumably, the latter’s lack of it.
Jesus said they (the religious leaders) were of their father, the devil. He didn't mean this genetically, and neither was the apostle john referring to Cain's genes.
- “This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts, Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith.” – 2 Timothy 3:1-8
Watch out for the lie!
A number of Serpent Seed believers end up mocking any idea that man fell "simply" for taking and eating of the fruit of the tree, resorting to the apologetics of embarrassment - "Are you serious? You believe that??"
What they are in essence asking - what William Branham in essence taught - was, "Did God really say that?" Following the question with the declaration, "God really didn't say that."
It has an all too familiar ring to it... doesn't it?
The challenge followed by the lie.
This is a spiritual war, and the one behind the serpent seed lie is the devil, who became the father of all lies in that garden moment, with the planting of the "unseed", the lie that produced death for the first time in the history of the universe. He is the one with the audacity to snuggle up next to the truth and tell you the truth is the lie and the lie is the truth.
He's been doing it from the beginning.
Did first-century Jews believe the Serpent's Seed doctrine?
Message believers are quick to point to the fact that there is some Jewish fiction and rabbinical speculation that regarded the fall of Eve as a sexual sin. The suggestion that they cast light on Paul’s reference to Eve and that Paul might at least have had them in mind, since he pictures the Corinthians as a pure virgin who may not be found pure at her presentation to her bridegroom, is a distortion of the text. There is nothing sexy in Paul’s words. Eve was a married woman and not a virgin. The notion of the devil and of devils and evil angels having sexual intercourse with women is monstrous and found its ugliest form in the fiction of the incubus and the succubus in the days of the witchcraft craze. We mention this aberration only because it still appears in books.
Reading 2 Cor. 11:3 as saying that the serpent sexually seduced Eve, seems to be reading biases into the text. It is also contrary to Titus 1:15 - Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled.
The serpent’s seduction of Eve was not sexual, but rather a beguiling of the mind by denying the truth of what God had said. The story of Eve aptly depicts the sort of danger the Corinthians faced, i.e. that their minds might be led astray. 4 Paul spells out the exact nature of the seduction he fears: the easy acceptance by the Corinthians of a different Jesus, a different spirit and a different gospel from those they received through his preaching. Paul does not tell us in what way they differed.
With the expression “just as the snake deceived Eve by his cunning” Paul states a precedent that informs his fear. It would appear that he intends his hearers to recognize three parallels between the record of Eve’s temptation by the snake in Gen. 3:1–13 and the situation he himself faced in Corinth.
First, just as Eve was deceived in her thinking (Gen. 3:1–6) and so lost her innocence (Gen. 3:7),54 so too the Corinthian church was at risk of being deluded in thought (φθαρῇ τὰ νοήματα ὑμῶν) and so losing her virginity (ἀπὸ … τῆς ἁγνότητος). In response to God’s inquiry, “What is this you have done?” Eve declares, “The snake deceived me (ὁ ὄφις ἠπάτησέν με, LXX)” (Gen. 3:13). As in 1 Tim. 2:14, Paul uses the compound verb ἐξηπάτησεν, where the prefix ἐκ- points to “successful deceit” (Moulton and Howard 311) or, more probably, to complete deception.
With the movement from παρθένον ἁγνήν (v. 1) to ἁγιότητος (v. 2) Paul is clearly developing the betrothal-marriage analogy further, but he may also be introducing a new analogy, that of “the church as in some sense the last Eve, related to Christ in the same way that Eve was related to Adam — derived from him, existing for his sake, and for him only.”
Now although the verb ἐξαπατάω, “I turn (someone) away from the right road by deceit” (Zerwick, Analysis 409), could be rendered “entice” or “lure,” it need not refer to sexual seduction. For Paul, the means of the deceit was not lust, but cunning (ἐν τῇ πανουργίᾳ αὐτοῦ), and the word νοήματα, not σώματα, is the subject of φθαρῇ. We need not go outside Genesis 3 to explain the expression ὁ ὄφις ἐξηπάτησεν Εὕαν.
Are you a woman who believes the Serpent' Seed doctrine?
If you are a woman who believes the serpent seed doctrine, there are a few extra statements by William Branham that should concern you.
Did Adam and Eve wear clothes before the fall?
First, William Branham taught that Eve had clothes in the Garden of Eden before the fall.
- Now notice, it was Eve that led Adam to the wrong, and it was the woman that took off her clothes before her Adam took off his. See? 
Was Eve actually the tree and not Satan or the serpent?
Second, William Branham mentioned a number of times that Eve was the Tree of Death. This means that the serpent was simply the "can opener" that Satan used to loose his perverted creation, Eve the tree, on innocent Adam.
- If Life come by Man, death come by the woman. All right, she was the tree of death.’’ 
- Now you can probably well understand what I've been hitting at. By her beauty and her sex control, her shape that was given to her by Satan, the by-product that Satan did, she is sent to deceive sons of God. And she can sway more of them to hell than any other instrument Satan has got. That's exactly right. 
- "Oh," you say, "she was a tree?" Sure. "Well, they said, 'Thou shall not take of this tree.' God said, in Genesis back there, 'Thou shall not take of this tree.'" Well the woman is the tree. She is the fruit tree. You're the fruit of your mother. The fruit of the womb is you. That's right. And then the fruit of the Tree of Life, that was in the garden of Eden, is Christ. Through the woman come death; 
- Eve, is Satan's queen. See, Satan, the serpent, got to Eve before Adam got to her. See? That's right. So he beguiled her, see; so Satan, the serpent, was the husband of Eve before Adam ever knew. 
- The other tree is definitely Satan because of what came forth of the fruit of that tree. Now then, we know that both of those trees had a relationship to man or they would never have been placed there.’’ 
So if you are a woman, and you believe William Branham, you are a tree of death.
Thankfully, the power of this false doctrine is obliterated by the words of the Apostle Paul, who wrote:
- There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. (Galatians 3: 28)
What about Eve being the mother of all living?
Message followers often point to Genesis 3:20 in support of the Serpent's Seed doctrine:
- And Adam called his wife’s name Eve; because she was the mother of all living.
The argument is that Eve is called the mother of all living but Adam is not called the father of all living, thereby allowing for the existence of the seed of the serpent in humanity. Is this what the passage is really saying?
The place to begin in attempting to understand this verse is with the fact that “Eve” was Adam’s name for his wife and not God’s name for Adam’s wife. We are so used to speaking of Adam and Eve that we generally fail to notice that not once in the story of the creation and the fall, up to this point, has Adam’s wife been called Eve. She has been called a “female” (Gen. 1:27), a “helper suitable” for Adam (Gen. 2:18), a “woman” (Gen. 2:22, 23), a “wife” (Gen. 2:24, 25; 3:8). But those are all descriptive or generic terms, not names. We do not find the name “Eve.”
This does not mean that God did not name the woman, however. He did.
But the name God gave her is not found in these chapters. It is found in Genesis chapter 5. There, in verses 1 and 2, we read, “When God created man, he made him in the likeness of God. He created them male and female and blessed them. And when they were created, he called them ‘man’ [or ‘Adam,’ because ‘Adam’ means man].” In other words, the name that God gave the woman was “man” or “Adam,” which was the name of her husband.
God called the woman “Adam.” But that immediately raises the question, “Why, if God called Eve ‘Adam,’ did Adam call Eve ‘Eve’?” The answer is not that Adam was contradicting God or changing the name of his wife on his own authority. Her name remained “Adam.” What Adam was actually doing was giving Eve a title. For “Eve” is a title; it means “life” in the sense of being a “life-giver.” We would say “mother.” The text says, “Adam named his wife Eve, because she would become the mother of all the living.”
It is sometimes the case in studying the Bible that the solution to one problem introduces another—that is what makes the study of the Bible so fascinating—and that is precisely what happens here. Yet it is at this point that we really come to the heart of the text. The problem is that, although Adam called his wife’s name Eve, meaning “life-giver” or “mother,” Eve was not a mother. In fact, if we read this and the next chapter closely, we have reason to believe that she had not even conceived. Her first child was Cain, and we are told not only of the birth but also the conception of Cain in Genesis chapter 4: “Adam lay with his wife Eve, and she became pregnant and gave birth to Cain” (Gen. 4:1). So we ask: Why did Adam name his wife “mother” when she was not yet a mother and, in fact, had not even become pregnant?
There is only one answer to that question, and it comes from the context. Five verses before this Adam and Eve had heard the judgment of God against Satan in which God said, “I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel” (Gen. 3:15). This verse mentioned the woman’s offspring and said flatly that her seed would crush the head of Satan.
God had said that the punishment for eating of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil was death. Adam and Eve had seen the judgment of God against Satan. Satan had appeared to them in the guise of the serpent, which was most assuredly not the slithering, lowly creature we know as a snake today. The Hebrew word translated “serpent” in Genesis 3:1 is nachash, which in its early and primary use probably meant “a shining one” (Gesenius). The serpent stood upright and was perhaps the most glorious of all God’s creatures. Suddenly, however, Adam and Eve heard God’s judgment on Satan and saw this beautiful animal turn into a snake and slide away into the bushes. They must have been paralyzed with fear. They had seen the serpent’s judgment, and they were next. What would God do to them? Would they become snakes also? Would they die?
As they thought about this and heard the greatly reduced words of the judgment of God on themselves, the deliberately hopeful words contained in God’s reference to the woman’s offspring must have gotten through. The fact that Eve would have offspring was itself significant. Since she had not yet given birth it meant that she would not die physically, at least not then. Since she had not yet conceived it meant that Adam would not die either (the conception of Cain comes in Genesis 4:1). Moreover, there was the nature of the one to come. He would be a deliverer. He would crush the head of Satan. This was their hope. God had said that Eve would give birth to one who in some manner would be the deliverer. So when Adam named his wife Eve, mother, she not even being pregnant, it was an act of faith, by which he testified to his belief that God would keep his promise and that the deliverer would come.
Genesis 3:20 is not the only place in Genesis that would lead us to think this way. When Eve finally conceived (Gen. 4:1) and brought forth Cain, both she and Adam thought that he was the deliverer. They thought Cain was Jesus, which is why they named him “Cain,” meaning “brought forth” or “acquired.” In colloquial language we would say, “I’ve got him” or “Here he is.” Indeed, when we get to chapter 4, I am going to show that Eve’s words were even stronger than this. For she did not merely say, “I have brought forth [there is the meaning of ‘Cain’] a man,” that is, the man who was promised. She said (so I believe), “I have brought forth a man, even Jehovah [the ‘Redeemer’].”
We know, of course, that Eve and Adam were mistaken. They thought they had brought forth the deliverer when actually they had brought forth a murderer, for Cain killed his brother Abel. But up to this point their perceptions were right. God had promised a deliverer, and they believed him, showing their belief by the naming of Eve by Adam and Cain by Eve. By this they showed that they were staking their hope on the word of God.
So the argument of message followers is false. Genesis 3:20 does not support the argument that there is special significant in Eve being called the mother of all living but Adam not being called the father of all living, They miss the true meaning of the passage because they read it with a presupposed meaning in view and not the actual words of the passage.
Who was the seed of the woman?
The LORD God said to the serpent,
- “Because you have done this, cursed are you above all livestock and above all beasts of the field; on your belly you shall go, and dust you shall eat all the days of your life. I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.”
Imagine a group of people, a family, and into the midst of them comes slithering as fast as it can (and you know how fast they can come) a snake, a venomous snake, a poisonous snake, coming right at them. One man goes after the snake, and he begins to stomp on it. Finally he crushes the head and saves the family, but only after, in the process, the snake bites him, the poison goes into him, and he dies. That’s the picture.
What God is saying is - the serpent is not just a snake but is Satan. It represents evil. God is saying that an offspring of Eve, the seed of the woman, a human being, is going to destroy sin and death itself but get a fatal wound in the process. A human being is going to come, and he’s going to destroy sin and death, and in the process lose his life. I wonder who that could be...
The first Adam should have done something like that, not just stood there and let the Serpent destroy his family. The first Adam should have jumped on the snake or stomped on the snake or whatever. But the second Adam will. It’s Jesus Christ. Keep this in mind. In Romans 4 Paul says, “In Christ your sins are covered.” In Romans 4 Paul says, “Blessed is the one whose sin is covered. Blessed is the one to whom God does not impute sin.”
In the whole history of the world, there was only one human being that was only an offspring of a woman.
- Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.
This is the prophecy of the coming of Jesus Christ, and what Jesus Christ is going to do is he is going to destroy all the works of the Serpent.
If you go to Revelation 12, where it talks about the Serpent, the Dragon, Satan, and his seed, and the woman and her seed, God is not saying, “From now on, snakes and people will hate each other.” That’s not what he’s saying. “This is how the serpent lost his legs and why snakes and people hate each other.” No.
What it’s talking about is the human race will have only two kinds of people in it. There will be people who follow Satan’s advice in the garden and there will be people who follow the Lord. When it says here, “I will put enmity between you and the woman, between your seed and hers,” that can’t mean it’s putting hatred in the snake. The snake already hates the woman. It can’t mean it’s putting hatred and enmity in the children of the snake, the followers of the snake, because they already hate God.
What is it saying? The first step of salvation is when God puts in you a hatred for Satan and all his ways. You only begin to move out of moralism and legalism, where you just hate the consequences of bad behavior but you’re afraid and proud, and you move into the position where you actually begin to hate sin.
The divinely ordained hostility that takes place between the serpent’s seed and the seed of the woman. In the vast majority of cases where the Hebrew word "zeraʿ" (lit., “seed”) is used, it refers to an immediate offspring rather than a distant descendant. For example, Seth is Eve’s “other seed” (Genesis 4:25); Abram laments that he is still without seed (Genesis 15:3); Lot’s daughters want to bear their father’s seed (Genesis 19:32, 34); Ishmael is Abraham’s seed (Genesis 21:13); Samuel is Hannah’s seed (1 Sam. 1:11; 2:20); Solomon is David’s seed (2 Sam. 7:12). This observation alone should caution us about seeing too quickly a clear-cut reference here to some remote individual.
Similarly, one should not force an interpretation on her offspring that the expression cannot bear. The Septuagint translates the Hebrew word "zarʿāh" (lit., “her seed”) as spérmatos autḗs (lit., “her seed”). Bbt to read the Septuagint as “her sperm” in order to see a hint here of the virgin birth of this seed (the absence of a sperm-supplying father) is farfetched indeed. If for no other reason, Gen. 4:25 would invalidate that proposal, for here Eve says that God has given her “another seed,” and certainly Seth was not born of a virgin!
However, Genesis 3:15 is good news as the words of God to the woman and the man include expressions both of divine grace and of divine judgment. Yes, there will be pain for Eve, but she is promised children. Sterility will not be one of her problems. Yes, there will be frustration for Adam because of intractable soil, but he will eat and not starve to death.
One may surmise, therefore, that God’s speech to the serpent contains both judgment and promise. Indeed, the serpent is banned and he becomes a crawler. He is under judgment. The promise is that some unspecified member(s) of the human race will one day lash out against this serpent’s seed. More than a change in the serpent’s position is involved here — it is now a question of his existence.
Would this individual, or these individuals, be among the kings of Israel and Judah who are the “offspring” of their father (2 Sam. 7:12; Ps. 89:4), who “crush” their enemies (Ps. 89:23) “under their feet” (2 Sam. 22:39), so that these enemies “lick the dust” (Ps. 72:9)? Later revelations will state that it is Jesus who reigns until he puts all his enemies under his feet (1 Cor. 15:25).
Where did William Branham get this doctrine?
In 1910, Benjamin Purnell from the House of David in Benton, Michigan published a book entitled, "The Star of Bethlehem" which contained details of the Serpent's Seed doctrines:
- Adam was placed in a garden eastward in Eden, as keeper and lord of the garden; and Eve, the mother of all living (soul) with him as a helpmeet, and not a helpmate — nor did she help him, except to the grave. The serpent beast was a preacher, called Gadrel. And the proof is, he preached to Eve, and transformed the word of the Lord God, and said to her, Yea hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden, etc.
- Eve did partake of that which was forbidden, and gave unto her husband, and he did eat; (which was Adam — he representing her spiritual husband, being immortal;) but by this act fell, and received the blood with the tares, which she had received from Gadrel in this act of adultery and fornication... 
We know by William Branham's own admission that he preached at The House of David. is this where he got his doctrine of the Serpent's Seed?
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- New American Standard Bible, 1995 Edition: Paragraph Version (La Habra, CA: The Lockman Foundation, 1995), 2 Co 11:2–3.
- The New International Version (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2011), 2 Co 11:2–3.
- Common English Bible (Nashville, TN: Common English Bible, 2011), 2 Co 11:2–3.
- James B. Williams and Randolph Shaylor, eds., God’s Word in Our Hands: The Bible Preserved for Us (Greenville, SC; Belfast, Northern Ireland: Ambassador Emerald International, 2003), 366.
- Paul Barnett, The Second Epistle to the Corinthians, The New International Commentary on the New Testament (Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1997), 501–502.
- The Holy Bible: King James Version, Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version. (Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009), Acts 17:26
- Acts 17:26 - The Holy Bible, English Standard Version Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers.
- Acts 17:26 (Amplified Bible, Copyright © 1954, 1958, 1962, 1964, 1965, 1987 by The Lockman Foundation
- David H. Stern, Complete Jewish Bible: An English Version of the Tanakh (Old Testament) and B’rit Hadashah (New Testament), 1st ed. (Clarksville, MD: Jewish New Testament Publications, 1998), Ac 17:26.
- THE.SECOND.COMING_ PHOENIX.AZ SUNDAY_ 55-0220A
- QUESTIONS.AND.ANSWERS.ON.HEBREWS.3_ JEFF.IN 57-1006
- The Holy Bible: King James Version, Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version. (Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009), Rom 5:12.
- Biblical Studies Press, The NET Bible First Edition; Bible. English. NET Bible.; The NET Bible (Biblical Studies Press, 2006), Rom 5:12.
- American Bible Society, The Holy Bible: The Good News Translation, 2nd ed. (New York: American Bible Society, 1992), Ro 5:12.
- 2 Timothy 3:16 (ESV)
- THE.GOD.OF.THIS.EVIL.AGE_ JEFF.IN V-4 N-9 SUNDAY_ 65-0801M
- THE.EPHESIAN.CHURCH.AGE_ JEFF.IN ROJC 131-183 MONDAY_ 60-1205
- EPHESIAN.CHURCH.AGE - CHURCH.AGE.BOOK CPT.3
- The Holy Bible: English Standard Version (Wheaton: Standard Bible Society, 2001), Ge 2:15–17, 3:1–7
- The Holy Bible: King James Version, Genesis 3:6
- The Holy Bible: English Standard Version, Genesis 3:6 (Wheaton: Standard Bible Society, 2001).
- Biblical Studies Press, The NET Bible First Edition; Genesis 3:6 (Biblical Studies Press, 2006).
- Tyndale House Publishers, Holy Bible: New Living Translation, 3rd ed., Genesis 3:6 (Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, 2007).
- The Holy Bible: King James Version, Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version. (Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009), Ge 4:1–2.
- The Holy Bible: English Standard Version (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles, 2016), Ge 4:1.
- Biblical Studies Press, The NET Bible First Edition; Bible. English. NET Bible.; The NET Bible (Biblical Studies Press, 2005), Ge 4:1.
- William Branham, 53-0328 - Israel And The Church #4, para. 24
- William Branham, 64-0823E - Questions And Answers #2, para. 230
- Romans 5:19 (ESV)
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- Paul E. Koptak, Proverbs, The NIV Application Commentary (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2003), 661.
- Duane A. Garrett, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs, vol. 14, The New American Commentary (Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1993), 241.
- Gary Brady, Heavenly Wisdom: Proverbs Simply Explained, Welwyn Commentary Series (Darlington, England: Evangelical Press, 2003), 783.
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- The Holy Bible: English Standard Version (Wheaton: Standard Bible Society, 2001), Pr 31:27.
- Eisigisis is the act of reading an understanding, or an opinion into a biblical text, which may or may not be supported or evident by the text itself - in accordance with the person’s own presuppositions, agendas, and/or biases. This is the opposite of exegesis, which means to derive the meaning ‘out of’ the text.
- Genesis 2:15-16 (KJV)
- Willem VanGemeren, ed., New International Dictionary of Old Testament Theology & Exegesis (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1997), 1010.
- Genesis 3:6 (ESV)
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- Tyndale House Publishers, Holy Bible: New Living Translation, 3rd ed., Gen 3:6 (Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, 2007).
- The New International Version (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2011), Ge 3:17–19.
- The Holy Bible: King James Version, Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version. (Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009), 1 Jn 3:12.
- EPHESIAN.CHURCH.AGE - CHURCH.AGE.BOOK CPT.3
- Thomas F. Johnson, 1, 2, and 3 John, Understanding the Bible Commentary Series (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2011), 80.
- Raymond E. Brown, The Epistles of John: Translated, with Introduction, Notes, and Commentary, vol. 30, Anchor Yale Bible (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2008), 443.
- James Montgomery Boice, The Epistles of John: An Expositional Commentary (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2004), 92.
- Colin G. Kruse, The Letters of John, The Pillar New Testament Commentary (Grand Rapids, MI: W.B. Eerdmans Pub., 2000), 133–134.
- R. C. H. Lenski, The Interpretation of St. Paul’s First and Second Epistle to the Corinthians (Minneapolis, MN: Augsburg Publishing House, 1963), 1239.
- Robert James Utley, How It All Began: Genesis 1–11, vol. Vol. 1A, Study Guide Commentary Series (Marshall, Texas: Bible Lessons International, 2001), 59.
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- D. A. Carson, R. T. France, et al., eds., New Bible Commentary: 21st Century Edition, 4th ed. (Leicester, England: Inter-Varsity Press, 1994), 2 Co 11:1–6.
- Murray J. Harris, The Second Epistle to the Corinthians: a Commentary on the Greek Text, New International Greek Testament Commentary (Grand Rapids, MI: W.B. Eerdmans Pub. Co., 2005), 740–741.
- William Branham, August 29, 1965, Satan’s Eden
- William Branham, December 5, 1960, The Ephesian Church Age
- William Branham, February, 21, 1965, Marriage and Divorce
- William Branham, February, 21, 1965, Marriage and Divorce
- William Branham, August 29, 1965, Satan’s Eden
- The Ephesian Church Age Book, William Branham
- The Holy Bible: King James Version, Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version. (Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009), Ge 3:20.
- James Montgomery Boice, Genesis: An Expositional Commentary (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 1998), 228–233.
- The Holy Bible: English Standard Version (Wheaton: Standard Bible Society, 2001), Ge 3:14–15.
- The Holy Bible: English Standard Version (Wheaton: Standard Bible Society, 2001), Is 7:14.
- Timothy J. Keller, The Timothy Keller Sermon Archive (New York City: Redeemer Presbyterian Church, 2013).
- Victor P. Hamilton, The Book of Genesis, Chapters 1–17, The New International Commentary on the Old Testament (Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1990), 198–200.
- Purnell, Benjamin F. and Mary S., "The Star of Bethlehem", Benton Harbor, MI, 1910, pp.191 & 308)