And God said
That is, to Adam and Eve, whom he had made in his image and likeness, and to whom he had given the dominion of the earth and sea, and all things in them:
behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon
the face of all the earth;
every herb or plant which had a seed in it, by which it sowed itself again; or being taken off, might be sown by man, even everyone that was wholesome, healthful, and nourishing, without any exception; whatever grew in any part of the earth, be it where it would:
and every tree, in which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed;
all but the tree of knowledge, of good and evil, afterwards excepted; and both these take in all kind of vegetables, all herbs, plants, roots, even corn, wheat, barley, pease, beans and the various fruits of all sorts of trees, but that before mentioned:
to you it shall be for meat:
which is generally thought to be the food of the antediluvians F14, it not being proper, at least very soon, to kill any of the animals, until they were multiplied and increased, lest their species should be destroyed; though here is no prohibition of eating flesh; nor is it said that this only should be for meat, which is before mentioned; and by the early employment of some in keeping sheep, and by the sacrifice of creatures immediately after the fall, part of which used to be eaten by the offerers; and by the distinction of clean and unclean creatures before the flood, it looks probable that flesh might be eaten: and Bochart F15 refers this clause to what goes before in the preceding verse, as well as to what is in this, and takes the sense to be, that the fishes of the sea, and fowls of the air, and every living creature man had dominion over, as well as herbs and fruits, were given him for his food: but the Jews F16 are of opinion, that the first man might not eat flesh, but it was granted to the sons of Noah.
(From ( Romans 5:12 ) there was no death before Adam's sin, hence up until at least the fall, man did not eat meat. Ed.)
F14 "Panis erant primus virides Mortalibus Herbae", Ovid. Fast. l. 4.
F15 Hierozoic. par. 1. l. 1. c. 2. col. 11.
F16 T. Bab. Sanhedrin, fol. 59. 2.