Theological Trivia: Did Animals Talk in the Garden of Eden?

I used to post occasionally on some of the wacky search terms that led people to my blog, and also what I call trivia question theology.  Questions like “Did Adam and Eve have belly buttons?” or “Can God make a rock so big he can’t move it?”  Okay, maybe those aren’t real questions, but here is a question that a reader entered into a search engine that was sent to my blog looking for answers.

Could animals talk before the fall?

That’s a legitimate question.  Because Genesis describes the serpent as the most subtle of all the animals in the garden.  That’s why Satan came to Eve in that form.  Eve doesn’t seem surprised when the serpent begins speaking to her.  There is a joke that goes like this: Two muffins where sitting next to each other in an oven.  When one said “Whew, it sure is getting hot in here” the other said “Whoa!  A talking muffin!”  If animals did not talk to humans before the fall, it stands to reason that Eve would have reacted differently at the sight of a talking snake rather than carry on a casual conversation with it.  When Moses witnessed the burning bush in the wilderness he turned aside to see why the bush was not consumed.  It was a curious thing that got his attention.

I try to be real careful about not making the Bible say something it doesn’t say.  The Bible does not say the animals could talk.  But we do have Eve carrying on a conversation with it instead of either finding Adam and telling him he has to see this, or simply freaking out.  We also know that the resulting curse changed things.  The relationships between men and women changed, man’s relationship with God changed.  Perhaps the animals did talk casually to people before the fall; God did.

38 thoughts on “Theological Trivia: Did Animals Talk in the Garden of Eden?

  1. Talking animals? thats an answer we wont really have
    till we meet GOD face to face.

    My own personal opinion though is this.

    Before the flood there was one language among

    Does it not stand to reason and logic that before the
    fall, there was one language, period. for man and beast.

    Just as communication between people changed
    after the flood, so too did communication between man
    and beast change after the fall.

    I believe that before the fall GOD, Man, and beast had
    one and the same language, And one day will again.

  2. I’m not sure about the truth of the bible. I think some of it can be historical others just stories.

    I don’t think the animals spoke. I think it’s a story to show how sneaky the devil can be. Just like when that fellas donkey talked to him…it’s there to prove a point.


  3. I spent some time on the Who is Jesus blogsite. I don’t even know if C is a man or a woman, but I learned a lot very quickly. This is the type of Christian that the Internet Monk wrote about a lot; a person seeking Jesus that has been disenfranchised by the church; one that would follow Christ if it wasn’t for his “followers.” There are so many things I’d like to say I feel a post coming on 🙂

  4. The interesting things about the talking beasts are:
    (i) obviously, per the Genesis account of the fall, one beast spoke – why not all of them: serpents now do not speak, in my experience and that is presumably a function of the fall. The language of the curse is odd too (for me), as it implies that all animals will suffer to some extent (‘cursed are you ABOVE ALL the livestock…’ (i.e. the rest are also cursed but less so?);
    (ii) Numbers 22, Balaam’s donkey – the text says that the Lord opened the donkey’s mouth – i.e. the donkey has the intellectual capacity to communicate, but is somehow ordinarily restricted (in the same way that Balaam’s eyes are subsequently opened); and
    (iii) Genesis 9 specifies that God will require an accounting from every animal – i.e. they will be required to communicate (speak?) in the future (the judgment).

  5. I think if there were another instance in the bible apart from Genesis where the Devil uses a talking animal, then It would be more likely animals could not speak to Adam.But since there is not one instance where the Devil uses an animal(again), it is clear that animals could not speak from that particular time onwards and thats probably why Satan never used them again. I think part of the curse to all animals was the inability to communicate with man the way they used to. Just a thought.

  6. I’ll agree with that statement. There is, however, another instance of a talking animal. Balaam’s donkey spoke to him, but it was God – not the devil – who opened its mouth. Based on your assertion it seems God can still do things the devil cannot 😉

  7. I know this isn’t the Bible but there are some historical books that were not added to the bible that have truth to them. The Book of Jubilees for example is also found along with other books of the bible in the Dead Sea Scrolls found in caves in the 1940’s.

    The Book of Jubilees Chapter 3: verses 28 are below. This verse is about the animals right after Adam and Eve got kicked out of the garden.

    “28. And on that day was closed the mouth of all beasts, and of cattle, and of birds, and of whatever walks, and of whatever moves, so that they could no longer speak: for they had all spoken one with another with one lip and with one tongue.

    29. And He sent out of the Garden of Eden all flesh that was in the Garden of Eden, and all flesh was scattered according to its kinds, and according to its types unto the places which had been created for them.”

    Hope this helps!

  8. Also another note, The bible never says that the serpent who spoke to Eve was actually Satan. People seem to assume it was because he enticed her to do evil. It is possible that the serpent was influenced by him though.

  9. The Bible does not identify the serpent as Satan in the Genesis narrative that takes place in the Garden. But look at the curse given in Genesis 3; what God says to the serpent about enmity between your seed and the woman’s seed makes no sense if God is merely talking to a regular snake. But if the “woman’s seed” is a veiled reference to the Son of Man, i.e. Jesus who is the Christ, then he will one day strike to final blow to Satan. Even while issuing the curse, God alludes to a future salvation. Gen. 3 is the first prophesy of the Christ.

    The Bible never says in so many words “the serpent is the devil.” But most Bible scholars (perhaps I should say many) believe that Ezekiel 28 is not merely referencing 2 kings of earth but rather the fall of Satan from glory and his ultimate future destruction. If you conclude that Ezekiel 28 is indeed talking about Satan, then also notice verse 13 that says “you were in Eden.” No king alive at the time of Ezekiel (or any human besides Adam and Eve) were in Eden.

    Three times the Revelation refers to Satan as a serpent, 12:9 being the most compelling evidence that Satan was the serpent in Eden.

    The original topic was about animals in Eden and if they could talk. I don’t want to argue with anyone, but it is a very stimulating discourse.

  10. As you have already mentioned here, we cannot positively prove this with a scripture on the subject; but I have always believed that animals talked prior to the fall. I believe Eve’s reaction to the serpent is compelling proof of this. Put yourself in her position. If an animal came up to you and started a conversation, you would A) make a post hast exit thinking it was possessed or B) have a complete break-down and think you had lost every ounce of mind you had. Because she did neither of these, it would stand to reason that it was not an uncommon event for her to speak with an animal.

  11. I have often thought about this topic myself, and wondered about the possibility. Numbers 22 tells the story of Balaam and his donkey. When Balaam kept beating his donkey, “The Lord opened his mouth…” Is something like our curse keeping these animals’ mouths shut? Apparently, animals have the potential to speak with us.

  12. I can communicate with animals through mental telepathy. Language was the fall of man. The bible has lied to us. Satan possessed the serpent and used telepathy back then and is still using it today. This is how satan communicates with humans but we lost our ability to do so.. It was just another natural sense..the 6th sense.

  13. Well, I’ve got a bit of a different take.
    Let us notice that in the original Aramaic and Greek, the word ‘tricked’ was not used while describing what actually happened to Eve.
    The Word is ‘Beguiled’. And that one word, changes the story entirely.
    Beguile~’To deceive with,al.

    I don’t think Eve stood a Chance.
    They were the Fallen Angels, and their ‘beguiling’ of Eve was far more than just being ‘tricked’.

    So, that being said, I believe that ‘Snake’ could have looked and sounded like anything he wanted.

    RockStarPreacher Ministries

    If you are interested in checking out more of my ‘Electric Gospel’, please find us on YT ‘RockStarPreacher Ministries’, as well as on FB.

    Thanks, Brother.

  14. An interesting talk, some here may want to take a look at the post on my site,
    ‘the serpent in the garden’

  15. I have also read in Jubilees as well about the animals talking.The book is mentioned in the Bible more than once.I believe though it was not included in our bible the anciants surely read the work.Does that give it some legitamacy?What do you think?

  16. Number one we need to look outside the box, way outside, We know that Lucifer’s body was burned up by God so he would have not been able to communicate with Adam or Eve because he is a spirit and without his angelic body is subject to the laws of the 4th, 5th, and 6th dimensions hence Satan would need a vessel to communicate to a person in the 3rd dimension. I would say the snake was his most crafty choice at that present time. Also remember that God spoke to Adam as well now here’s the thing, God is a spirit being as well and I don’t think God had vocal cords so that would denote telepathic communication.

  17. I think you need to come back in a little closer to the box.

    How do we that Lucifer’s body was burned up? 2 Corinthians warns us that Satan has transformed himself into an angel of light. What the heck are the 4th, 5th and 6th dimensions and if those planes do exist how do we know what the laws are the govern them? Finally… you don’t think God had vocal chords. Noted.

  18. Interesting topic! Although this conversation started 4 1/2 yrs. ago. I came across this topic, because my sister just asked me this question tonight. “Did the animals talk before sin came upon the earth”. I looked up the question on the internet that my sister had asked me and this is how I came across this question made by so many of you. We all read the Bible over and over and each time we read something again, we have a new revelation of the scripture. It would have been nice if it had been written in the Bible, that animals did indeed speak, but we will never really know until we enter into Heaven. She was reading her Bible and this thought came to her. It does make sense, because it appears this, there was maybe something normal about the situation or Eve would have flipped out.
    Talking to her brought us to another question. So bare with me. All things are possible with GOD!

    On March 14, 2006, I went to the hospital for a simple test and I was for some reason not at peace by having this test done, even though I prayed I could not shake the uneasy feeling I was having, so on the way to the hospital, I called my Mother & told her I was not at peace, so she prayed a prayer that God’s hand would be upon me. Anyways the test started, another doctor called in and then my artery was ruptured and I died and went to Heaven. (Afterwards I was checked for brain damage, I had to learn to walk, talk, eat, read, dress myself all over again). Jesus came to me all light, for Jesus was the light, then Jesus took my left hand into His right hand and I could see His nail scarred hand. I was given a personal tour by Jesus, Himself. We ascended the clouds (hand in hand with each other) and then walked up a staircase where fountains flowed from the Throne Room, the many mansions, the Tree of Life and the River of Life, I heard the most amazing voices singing “Holy, Holy, Holy”. What I am getting at, my trip to Heaven, the whole time I was there the only voices I heard was the voices signing, when I was told to go back and that it was not my time to come now and the best part, I heard God speaking (Yes, God does have vocal cords. We are all created in His image.) as He was sitting upon the Throne, saying commands to the angels while one angel would go this way and another would go the other direction. (And I am not just talking about just two angels there was many, so much activity.) He was sending angels to do His bidding, His will for His Children here on earth, to keep us safe, to heal or save us, whatever the case maybe. Another thing I am trying to say, is the whole time Jesus was walking me around Heaven was, we never communicated to one another, we just knew what the other one was saying. Again I say, “With God all things are possible”! The only one that knows is the Father, Son & Holy Spirit. God Bless to all!

  19. I’m surprised that no one mentions 2 Peter 2:16. When writing about Balaam, the Apostle says: “But he was rebuked for his wrongdoing by a donkey–an animal without speech–who spoke with a human voice and restrained the prophet’s madness.” Peter acknowledges that donkeys don’t normally speak, then tells us that this one did. In so doing, Peter, an Apostle handpicked by Jesus to carry on as one of his representatives on earth, confirms both the reality of what is told in Numbers 22 and that God sometimes uses ways to get our attention that absolutely rock our sensibilities.

  20. I think that before the fall, communication was telepathic with humans and animals. If in the spirit world we communicate telepathically it would stand to reason that before the fall, we spoke with our thoughts. Animals certainly have thoughts.

  21. The question here is did animals talk in the creation story? So if we will agree that the KJV bible is the inspired word of God, written by men that was inspired by God agreed. To know the truth you should have 2 0r 3 witnesses that agree chronologically and in content, and the KJV is one witness. The bible also mentions The Book of Enoch, The Book of Jasher, The book of Jubilees. So if you re search these books I believe that you will agree that they agree on all accounts. God had given us 4 witnesses to the men and women who wrote the KJV so we know the truth beyond faith. The serpent spoke to Eve and the donkey spoke to the man, KJV and when Adam & Eve was cast out of the Garden, Adam made a incense sacrifice and that day the mouths of the animals were closed. The book of Jubilees. So do the search and know the TRUTH. The truth shale set you free.

  22. responding to clark bunch seriously? you would close a comment because someone expressed their view right or wrong she may have had an experience not necessarily from God and this is your response this is the first time I have come to this sight for my grandchild and I were debating whether animals tallked in the garden and I enjoyed the discourse and found some comments amusing then it was like walking into a door when I read your comment

  23. Lisa – the original post was written in 2010. Some blogs automatically close comments after two weeks, some delete posts after a year or two. But the comments were never actually closed or you wouldn’t have been able to write one 😉

  24. I really don’t think eve knew she was speaking to a serpent until she took of the forbidden fruit then their eyes were open then they saw it was a serpent, I haven’t read genesis in awhile but I need to

  25. It’s in the book of Jubilees, one of many the Romans removed.
    “And on that day was closed the mouth of all beasts, and of cattle, and of birds, and of whatever walks, and of whatever moves, so that they could no longer speak: for they had all spoken one with another with one lip and with one tongue.
    3:29 And He sent out of the Garden of Eden all flesh that was in the Garden of Eden, and all flesh was scattered according to its kinds, and according to its types unto the places which had been created for them.”
    Jubilees 3:28-29

    Also read Deuteronomy 28:15-68 KJV to learn who the real Jews (Yahudiy) annd Israelites are. Read Genesis 10:2-3, Revelations 2:9, 3:9 KJV to learn who the fake jew(ish) people are. Our Heavenly Father, YAH, looks like His children (Daniel 7:25 KJV) as does the Messiah Yahusha (Revelations 1:13-15). If you care about your salvation, research the pagan roots of Christianity and seek the true Besorah (Gospel) from the real chosen people of YAH. The laws are NOT done away with (Matthew 5:17-19 KJV).


  26. God spoke with His Creation because He is the Maker, after all. The Bible does say there was food for all of His Creation so, there was no need to prey on one another. God is the Living Spirit and the Living Word, so, it would stand to reason that God lives in all of His Creation, all that has breath of God in them, especially for mankind if one does recognize the Savior knocking on the door of one’s heart and open to allow Him in. I agree it is an interesting topic to carry on a debate but it deviate us from the Creator who loves the world so much that He willingly gave up His Son to take our place on the Cross. In the Beginning, there was one language for all creation and if God did shut up the mouths of the animals, I’m glad He did because, can you imagine if the animals continued to speak, some would join forces with the evil of humanity?? The Day will come when all true believers will see the Glory of God and all of His new Creation, including the animals. Forever to be God!!

  27. I found this in the book of Jubilees: Chapter 3:24 – “And on that day was closed the mouth of all the animals and of the beasts and of the birds and of whatever walks and of whatever moves, so that they could not speak ; for they all had spoken with each other one lip and one tongue.”

    I find that animals talk to each other already and my cat communicates with me intelligibly, just not using human speech. It takes a while to learn what your pet says, but with time you learn to understand the nuances in the different sounds. And those sounds are consistent each time. I find that I understand other people’s cats to a certain degree. They all speak similarly.

  28. If you read the book of jubilees, you will feel like reading genesis. And in the book of jubilees it says: And on that day was closed the mouth of all beasts, and of cattle, and of birds, and of whatever walks, and of whatever moves, so that they could no longer speak: for they had all spoken one with another with one lip and with one tongue.

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