In the Selichoth for the Day of Atonement the above reversal of
the usual order of the names of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob is
thus referred to: "The first covenant Thou didst exalt, and the
order of the contracting parties to it Thou hast reversed."
Abraham deserved to have been created before Adam, but the Holy
One--blessed be He!--said, "Should he pervert things as I make them,
then there will be no one to rectify them; so behold I will create Adam
first, and if he should make things crooked, then Abraham following him
will make them straight again."
THE MIDRASHIM, _Menachoth_, chap. 14.