*During learning recently I stumbled across a beautiful passage (most likely a midrash) where Hashem was crying about how He missed is surprised how Adam would delight in talking to Him, but now he is hiding etc.

I can't find it anymore. Does anyone know where it is?

Edit: I found it. It's Josephus so not a midrash or Torah source like I thought, and I got a few things wrong too. However I will still award the bounty to an answer and will do so based on whichever answer can find an authentic Torah source that is conceivably of the same line of thought or similar source to Josephus.

  • 1
    What were you learning that brought up the midrash?
    – Dov
    Commented Mar 30, 2023 at 10:09
  • @Dov no idea, sorry!
    – Rabbi Kaii
    Commented Mar 30, 2023 at 10:35
  • @Shmuel beautiful but no
    – Rabbi Kaii
    Commented Mar 30, 2023 at 11:01
  • Did you remember anything else from reading that Midrash? Any other topics? That might improve the search.
    – Shmuel
    Commented Mar 30, 2023 at 11:07
  • @Shmuel I hope I am not speaking LH about myself but I am drawing a complete blank. I think I saw it on sefaria... although chances are I would have bookmarked it if so... Thanks so much for looking. Sincere apologies in advance if I saw this in a dream, or ch'v on some accidental click on some Christian site...
    – Rabbi Kaii
    Commented Mar 30, 2023 at 11:08

4 Answers 4


בראשית רבה י״ט. ט

…….וקוננתי עליו איכה שנאמר ויאמר אל האדם איכה————-איכה כתיב

(לשון איכה כמו של חורבן הבית)

The medrash says that the posuk used a word like eicha of the churban by adam harishon because in both hashem sat and cried equally after expelling his loved ones

  • Thank you this is beautiful and stunning and very related. It's not what I saw though, because what I saw definitely contained reference to how Hashem misses how Adam would love talking to Him and now instead he hides from Him.
    – Rabbi Kaii
    Commented Mar 31, 2023 at 0:58
  • 1
    Yes @Avraham the latter. Sorry. Follow the Hs: He and he (lower case h)
    – Rabbi Kaii
    Commented Mar 31, 2023 at 8:38
  • 1
    @RabbiKaii its probably easier to find Adam from his hiding then finding a source to this secluded midrash! Commented Mar 31, 2023 at 15:49
  • 1
    @RabbiKaii yup. I'm humming to myself Avraham fried's 'don't hide from me' song right now Commented Mar 31, 2023 at 15:51
  • @RabbiKaii it would be a pretty lengthy essay to write, but perhaps I'll try when I get to it Commented Mar 31, 2023 at 15:54

FOUND IT. Josephus, Antiquities of the Jews 1:1:4:

אך בשמעם את קול ה׳ אלהים מתהלך בגן, התחבאו תחת עצי הגן, כי ידעו את עַוָתָתָם ולא נועזו להרים פניהם אליו. ויקרא ה׳ אלהים אל האדם וישאלהו על מה זה יתחמק ויחבא מפניו תחת אשר עד כה ראה פניו בששון ובשמחת לבב?

But when God came into the garden, Adam, who was wont before to come and converse with him, being conscious of his wicked behaviour, went out of the way. This behaviour surprised God; and he asked what was the cause of this; and why he, that before delighted in that conversation, did now fly from it, and avoid it?

Thanks all and sorry for the slight red herring - it didn't turn out to be a midrash but thankfully it wasn't just a dream or christian thing! BH Shabbat Shalom.

  • 1
    I'm glad you found what you were looking for! Just to recap, your OP seeks "a beautiful passage (most likely a midrash) where Hashem was crying about how He missed how Adam would delight in talking to Him, but now he is hiding" It's worth pointing out that aside from not being a midrash this quote is also missing a couple of the elements you asked about. Josephus does not have God crying, nor does he have God missing Adam. Both of those seemed like key elements in your OP and comments. Commented May 5, 2023 at 18:14
  • Second that. As far as Josephus's source, why do you assume he had a canonical source? Josephus records a lot of "street torah." We don't have much Chazalic literature that predates Josephus. At best, he may be reporting oral traditions that eventually made their way into midrashim (which were redacted much later). The closest rabbinic sources still seem to be those others have identified in this threat: Rabbah 19:19 where Hashem notes that Adam used to listen to him and now doesn't, and Sanhedrin 38b where "ayeka" is interpreted to mean Adam turned his heart from Hashem.
    – Avraham
    Commented May 5, 2023 at 18:52
  • According to the Midrash (brought down in Rashi), וידעו כי עירמם הם means they realized they squandered the one mitzvah entrusted to them. Perhaps ואירא כי עירם אנכי ואחבא can be interpreted in the same vein.
    – shmosel
    Commented May 5, 2023 at 19:53
  • I'll reword it tomorrow
    – Rabbi Kaii
    Commented May 6, 2023 at 21:35
  • 1
    I should note that the way I found this was to go to my history. The history only goes back 3 months, and the day I decided to do this was the very last day when it would have been possible! BH
    – Rabbi Kaii
    Commented May 7, 2023 at 11:39

OP, you have identified your source as Josephus's passage where he says:

But when God came into the garden, Adam, who was wont before to come and converse with him, being conscious of his wicked behaviour, went out of the way. This behaviour surprised God; and he asked what was the cause of this his procedure; and why he, that before delighted in that conversation, did now fly from it, and avoid it?

and are looking for a rabbinic "source." But our rabbinic sources--especially aggadic midrashim--were redacted well after Josephus wrote his works at the end of the 1st century CE. At best, you might find rabbinic sources reflecting the same tradition or idea. But Josephus also often records stories and detail we do not have other sources for, perhaps because they reflect lost traditions or because they are non-canonical "street Torah."

However, many of these elements are found in at least some rabbinic sources. In Bereshit Rabbah 19:9, Hashem laments the fall of man. The text links the word "ayeka" (where are you) to "eikh heveit" (roughly, what has happened to you!) and to "eicha" (the first word of Lamentations, which has the same implication of sad shock: how [has it happened]). In elaborating, the midrash says God was commenting on both the fact that man has become disgraced and that man has become distant from Hashem. The key phrase I'm thinking of is: אֶתְמוֹל לְדַעְתִּי, וְעַכְשָׁיו לְדַעְתּוֹ שֶׁל נָחָשׁ - roughly, yesterday Adam was was in accord with me, today he is in accord with the Serpent.

The Etz Yosef explains:

אתמול לדעתי התבונן איך נפלת ממדרגתך. כי בתחלה לא היה בך כח הרע מאומה ונמשכת לדעתי ורצוני. והיום לדעתו וחפצו של נחש לכח הרע ואתמול הכוונה כמו קודם ותחלה: Translation: God is reflecting on how much you have fallen. At first, there was no evil in you and you sought to know me and do my will. Today, you do what the Serpent wants for evil...

Bereshit Rabbah 21:4 has a similar statement and the Etz Yosef makes a similar comment.

In Sanhedrin 38b we find: ואמר רב יהודה אמר רב אדם הראשון מין היה שנאמר ויקרא ה' אלהים אל האדם ויאמר לו איכה אן נטה לבך. Rav Yehudah said in the name of Rav, Adam was a heretic. Because the verse says God called out to man and said "where are you" (ayeka), meaning where has your heart turned to.

As for the element of surprise that man has turned away and hidden, Sforno to 3:9 comments that "ayeka" is not a question of where man is but is asking (or observing) "that you do not appear in the garden as you used to, because now you are hiding and you did not do that before."

So, putting these sources together, we have most of the elements of your OP and the Josephus passage: God is surprised that man is hiding from him which is not what he used to do (Sforno); God is disappointed about the fall of man (Bereshit Rabbah); and God laments that that man used to want be be close to Him and/or listen to Him but has now gone in a different direction (Bereishit Rabbah & Sanhedrin). The only elements I'm not seeing are (a) anthropomorphizing that God misses Adam (which I don't see in the Josephus quote either) and (b) the specific idea that Adam used to "delight" in talking to God.

  • your answer could be improved by providing a translation, paraphrase, or summary of the Hebrew language quotations. This would allow more users to benefit from your answer and bring your answer closer in line with the site's jargon policy. Commented May 2, 2023 at 21:32
  • Thanks for being so thorough. The ayeka idea in 19:9 is also relevant
    – Rabbi Kaii
    Commented May 7, 2023 at 9:01


Based on the other answers which refer to each of those passages it seems the only question is the conversations G-d would have with Adam and how He misses them.

For that we can point to the other Midrashim and pesukim that refer to their conversations

The obvious conversation is when G-d told man not to eat from the tree etc etc.

I'm not sure if that conversation included any response from Adam, so it may be hard to call it a conversation.

The only conversation I can think of is the Midrash that refers to how after Adam finished giving names to all animal creations, G-d asked Adam "what is my name?" And Adam responded "to you, it is beautiful to call you Adonai, since you are the master (Adon) to all of your creations".

This is the only back and forth conversation I can think of, and it seems to be much more "joyous" than the initial conversation. Not sure where the chat bot got a reference to that from the Midrash (unless it just subconsciously combined the two), but I've found that many AIs are very inaccurate with sources, especially Jewish sources, so I wouldn't rely on it for anything. (Unless one considers it a new medium for prophecy)

  • Well, it would be nice if I could find out where the AI got the idea that Hashem accused Adam of not running with joy to greet Him. It's possible it literally made it up, but AI generally works with something.
    – Rabbi Kaii
    Commented May 5, 2023 at 15:44
  • 1
    @RabbiKaii hi. It probably got it from billions upon billions of training data records combined with its programming of making connections from one thing to the other. It may have gotten it from here or elsewhere. One time I was pasting in sections of megillah 29a and asking it to translate it, at one point it just wrote the beginning in Aramaic and then it "made up" a bunch of new Aramaic gemara as a "continuation". Similar for Rashi, I've seen it literally make up "continuations" of what it thinks Rashi would say. Did you try the same prompt twice on different sessions? It's very inaccurate Commented May 5, 2023 at 19:43

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .