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Who was the first to walk with God?

God’s presence has been felt by humans since the earliest days of mankind. From the Bible, we learn about key biblical figures who had profound relationships with God characterized by faith, obedience, and righteous living. This close bond between God and select individuals in the Bible raises an interesting question – who was the very first person to walk with God? Let’s explore this question and see what the Bible reveals about the origins of humanity’s spiritual connection with the Divine.

The Book of Genesis

To find the first person who walked with God, we must go back to the earliest accounts in the Bible – the Book of Genesis. Genesis provides a narrative of the creation story, Adam and Eve, the flood, and the founding fathers of the Jewish nation. Within its pages, we find insights into the beginnings of human relationships with the Almighty. Two important figures emerge – Enoch and Noah.


Enoch has the distinction of being one of only two people who never experienced death according to the Bible. Genesis 5:24 states “Enoch walked with God; then he was no more, because God took him away.” From this brief description, we learn key facts about Enoch:

  • He “walked with God” indicating a close, ongoing relationship
  • God “took him away” before he experienced death

Although the details of Enoch’s life are limited, these clues suggest he had a strong connection with God characterized by faith and obedience.


While Enoch seems to be the first named person to walk closely with God, the Bible highlights another important figure – Noah. Genesis 6:9 describes Noah in this way:

“Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked faithfully with God.”

Again, the emphasis is on Noah’s close relationship with God by “walking faithfully.” Noah’s story is much more developed than Enoch’s, spanning Genesis chapters 6-9 with the narrative of the Great Flood. Here we see Noah trusting and obeying God by building the ark and preparing for the deluge. So Noah emerges as another prime example of an early biblical figure who walked with God.

Cain and Abel

To find the absolute first person to relate to God spiritually, we must go back even further in Genesis to the account of Cain and Abel. Genesis 4 introduces the first siblings born to Adam and Eve – Cain and Abel. The brothers famously offered sacrifices to God, but only Abel’s was acceptable:

“In the course of time Cain brought some of the fruits of the soil as an offering to the Lord. And Abel also brought an offering—fat portions from some of the firstborn of his flock. The Lord looked with favor on Abel and his offering, but on Cain and his offering he did not look with favor.” (Genesis 4:3-5)

This story establishes a pattern of relating to God through sacrifice, prayer, and worship. Although imperfect and marred by jealousy, Cain and Abel set the precedent for humans communing with the Divine. If we consider their account chronologically, Cain and Abel were likely the first literal examples of people walking with God.


Given that Cain and Abel were the sons of Adam and Eve, we must also consider Adam’s role as the first human created by God. Genesis 2 provides vivid details of God forming Adam, placing him in the Garden of Eden, and interacting directly with him. Specifically, Genesis 3 describes God walking in the Garden and fellowshipping with Adam and Eve.

“Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden.” (Genesis 3:8)

This passage reveals God’s habit of walking and talking directly with his creations, long before humanity fell into sin. So Adam, as the first man, set the precedent for close communion with God in the Garden.

Hints in Genesis

Though Genesis does not provide definitive proof of who was the very first to walk with God, it provides some hints. By examining key passages and themes, we can make reasonable conjectures:

  • Adam and Eve fellowshipped directly with God in the perfection of Eden
  • Cain and Abel related to God through sacrifice and worship
  • Enoch is the first named person said to “walk with God”
  • Noah demonstrated complete faith and obedience to God’s commands

Adam and Eve provide the earliest examples of humans interacting directly with the Divine, though after the Fall this closeness was broken. So based on the Genesis narrative, Adam and Eve seem to be the first beings described as walking intimately with God in the Garden before sin corrupted their relationship.

Seth – A Righteous Son

There is one more important figure alluded to in Genesis that may provide clues about the first humans to know God – Seth. After Cain murdered his brother Abel, Adam and Eve had another son named Seth. Genesis 4:25-26 says:

“Adam made love to his wife again, and she gave birth to a son and named him Seth, saying, ‘God has granted me another child in place of Abel, since Cain killed him.’ Seth also had a son, and he named him Enosh. At that time people began to call on the name of the Lord.” (NIV)

The mention of people calling on God’s name indicates Seth and his offspring had an active, worshipful relationship with the Almighty. As Adam and Eve’s godly son, Seth and his descendants retained awareness of God after the loss of Abel.

Evidence from Jewish Tradition

Beyond what Genesis reveals, ancient Jewish tradition provides more clues about humanity’s first spiritual interactions with God. Extra-biblical texts give us these insights:

Book of Enoch

This text dating to around 300 BC elaborates on the brief Genesis account of Enoch. It describes his heavenly visions, interaction with angels, and how he “walked with God.” It reveals details on early human communion with the Divine.

Book of Jubilees

Written around 150 BC, this text claims that Adam’s sons Cain and Abel first began offering sacrifices to God after an angelic visit. This reflects humankind’s early worship of the Creator.


The Jewish Talmud explains that Adam first acknowledged God as his Creator by calling upon His name. This act kicked off humanity’s relationship with the Almighty.

These ancient sources generally agree that Adam, Cain, Abel, Enoch and Seth were the first to pave the way in relating to God in a spiritual way. They set the precedent for the long Biblical tradition of walking with God that continues through Noah, Abraham, Moses, and beyond.

The First Family as a Whole

While we don’t have definitive proof of the very first person who cultivated a spiritual relationship with God, the Genesis narrative along with ancient Jewish texts point to Adam and his earliest descendants. Specifically, Adam, Eve, Cain, Abel, Enoch, and Seth seem to provide the starting examples of connecting to the Divine through worship, prayer, sacrifice, obedience, and walking faithfully with Him.

Rather than isolate a single individual, it may be best to consider Adam’s entire family in those first generations as pilgrims on the journey of learning how to relate to their Creator. Together, they established the patterns and practices of what would later be called walking with God.


Identifying the first person to enjoy spiritual communion with God proves difficult, if not impossible, to determine from Scripture and tradition. Enoch is the first named individual highlighted as having a close relationship with the Divine, while Adam and Eve may have been the first beings to literally walk with God in the Garden.

Looking at the early Genesis narrative, Adam and his family collectively modeled how to adore, trust, and obey the Almighty. Their examples ultimately set the stage for the long tradition of walking with God that would follow. While we may not be able to pinpoint the very first person, the origins of humanity’s spiritual fellowship with the Creator begins in the accounts of those early patriarchs and matriarchs who dared to draw near to Him.