“Do you believe in cavemen?”
Skeptics think ‘gotcha!’ when they ask this question. They might know the Bible says that Adam’s descendants built great cities, but they claim the ‘evidence’ clearly shows that early humans lived in caves.
“Of course we believe in cavemen,” we respond, “if by ‘cavemen’ you mean people who live in caves.” Just visit the town of Coober Pedy in South Australia, where opals are mined—it’s so hot that some miners live in underground houses. Real live ‘cavemen’ with TV sets!
Well, we answered the question. But the question is not really about cavemen at all. It’s about those hairy, cave-dwelling ‘apemen’ so often depicted in books and museums. People assume, based on their evolutionary beliefs, that humans who once lived in caves were primitive brutes. But this is not a deduction from the evidence; rather, it is a consequence of evolutionary conditioning. Even the caves occupied by Neandertals show clear evidence that they were skilful human beings, even talented musicians.
The Bible describes a number of ‘cavemen’. In Genesis, we find that Lot was once a ‘caveman’ (after he fled Sodom). When David was running from King Saul, he lived in a cave. Obadiah hid a hundred prophets in a cave and fed them bread and water, to save them from Jezebel. To escape the Midianites, the Israelites lived temporarily in caves. Elijah himself lived in a cave. Even Job mentions people who lived in caves (Job 30:6).
From the viewpoint of biblical history, as people spread out after the confusion of languages at Babel, they would have constructed a variety of homes—some temporary and some permanent—such as tents, or made of mud, stone or wood, and many people would surely have taken up residence in caves. (The receding waters of Noah’s Flood probably carved many caves—see Caves for all seasons.) Thus, you would expect evidence all over the world that people lived in caves.
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