Did The Apostle Paul Say We Descended From One Man?



Question: When Paul was speaking to the Athenians about God some modern versions of the Bible say he said, “From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth” (Acts 17:26).

Answer: The Greek text states, “He made of one every nation of men.” The text doesn’t actually say the words “one man.” It could mean one stock, one earth, or as some manuscripts say, “one blood.”

If we go back far enough - 100,000 to 200,000 years - we can trace our genes to one female and one male.

Scientists tell us that as well as Mitochondrial Eve there is a Y-chromosome Adam. They say that all men living now have a Y chromosome descended from that one man. All mitochondrial genomes today should be traceable to a single woman, a mitochondrial Eve. Whereas the Y chromosome is passed from father to son, mitochondrial DNA is passed from mother to daughter and to son. So if some people think that God made mankind 6000 years ago, or other people believe that God made humans a lot further in the past, Paul is correct either way.

The point Paul is making is that all mankind is made from one substance; we are all the same. No one nation can say they are any better than any other nation. We are all equal; we are all made in God’s image. The Lord may have different jobs and tasks for us all, just like he singled out Adam and Eve for a special purpose. 

"And hath made of one blood" (KJV) - All the families of humankind are descended from one origin or stock.