Thank you for passing on this information concerning the finding, I find it
interesting but I am still having a problem with your attempts to identify
Neanderthals as human when we still do not know what "human" means. Is
every organism that does "human" activities "human?" Is it the
characteristics of the skeleton which makes the organism human? Is it he
skeletal characteristics coupled with cultural detritus what makes organisms
human, or may something else (not seen in the fossil record or in a
photographic image for that matter) determine what is "human?"
I do not believe that the idea of the bearer of the "image of God" will even
help us here because even theologians can not agree on what that term means.
(my understanding of the Lutheran position is that we lost the image at the
fall and it is only present at present in Jesus Christ).
I would suggest that sin is part of the definition of "human" now and that
will be devilishly hard to find in the fossil record if "man" existed prior
I have no problems with Neanderthals, H. erectus, or A. afarensis, being
called men by their bones or cultures. But I do have a problem with those
who define the term as we Christians do and then apply it to them. Our
understanding of the term requires us to recognize our position before God.
If Neanderthals lived prior to Adam, or didn't spring from him, they could
behave as we do but not be capable of sin. Think of it, if not a
"descendent" of Adam, Joe Neanderthal could be a mass murder and not be a
sinner like say a grizzly who attacks and kills humans today; but would Joe
Oh well, just some thoughts, have a good weekend,