Adam was the first person created. He and his wife, Eve, would become the start of the family of mankind and everyone descends from them.
Mormons teach that in the pre-mortal life, where we lived with God prior to our births, he was known as Michael, who is mentioned in the Bible as an archangel. He is also referred to as the Ancient of Days. He was extremely intelligent and righteous and was a leader among the spirits there. He was chosen there to carry out his work on Earth and was second only to Jesus Christ in his intelligence and leadership. When Lucifer rose up in rebellion to God, Adam stood with Jesus against him. Adam participated in the creation of the world, which was carried out by Jesus under God’s direction.
He was created in God’s image. God placed Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, a perfect and safe place in which to begin their mortality. They were told they could eat from every tree but one—that of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. If they chose to eat from that one, they would die. He was given the responsibility to name all the animals.
Lucifer beguiled Eve into eating of the fruit and then she offered it to Adam, who also partook. Mormon scripture teaches that this was a transgression, not a sin, and that it was necessary in order for mankind to progress. They had both been given the assignment to have children, but Adam and Eve required fully mortal bodies in order to do so and to experience the necessary lessons and trials of mortality. Without their choice, life on earth would have no meaning and no one else could have come to Earth. Mormons honor both Adam and Eve for their choice in the Garden, believing it was made willingly and knowingly. They had to choose between two commandments and chose the one with the greater benefit.
Having eaten of the fruit, they became aware of their nakedness and made aprons for themselves from fig leaves. When they heard God calling to them, they hid from him. The Lord cursed the ground for Adam’s sake, which meant that from then on, outside the Garden he would have to work hard to produce food.
Adam had previously named Eve “Woman” to demonstrate the shared heritage to him, but he now called her Eve, which meant Mother of All Living, because she would be able to become a mother.
In order to protect them from also partaking of the tree of life, which would grant them immortality and would interfere with the Plan of Salvatin, God sent them out of the Garden and they began to live a fully mortal life, working hard for their living and raising a family. They were clothed in garments for them by God.
The Bible records that they became the parents of Cain and Abel. Additional Mormon scriptures reveal they had both sons and daughters prior to those two births, providing spouses for their children. Cain killed Abel and following this, Seth was born.
Adam died at age 930 and became the archangel Michael, referred to in the book of Daniel. As an archangel, Adam, now Michael, would serve in essential roles in God’s kingdom and play a part in the events of the last days.
Adapted from Every Person in the OT by Lynn F. Price; Horizon Publishers and the Bible Dictionary.