Terry Gray wrote:
>I don't normal jump to defend Glenn's views because I think that the
>culture of the early chapters of Genesis is Ancient Near East (ANE)
>and not in the 100,000's of years ago. Thus, I am sympathetic with
>the questions raised by Davis Young in his Antiquity and Unity of the
>Human Race: Revisited
>(http://www.asa3.org/ASA/resources/CSRYoung.html). These sorts of
>observations are what I believe have led Dick Fischer and Mike
>Satterlee to their belief that Adam appeared at this time.
When Christian Scholars Review received Young's article for
publication they sent it to me for review. He referenced my
articles, "In Search of the Historical Adam, Parts I and II"
published in PSCF in 1993-94, and it was probably for that reason
they asked me to be one of the reviewers. So I do have a degree of
intimacy with that article.
First, let me make a quick analogy. Doctors diagnosis illnesses on
the basis of symptoms. If it is flu season, and we have flu
symptoms, a doctor will likely presume we have flu. If there are
other symptoms such as having been bit by an insect with a golf
ball-size swelling, the doctor may look in another direction. The
point is: that's the way doctors do doctering, and scientists do
science. In matters of faith, however, a lemming analogy fits better.
In the methodology I have proposed, I have tried to be a "doctor."
In that regard, the "symptoms" in the form of data and evidence fall
overwhelmingly on this method of apology. Human race old, Adam
young, through intermarriage everyone has ancient ancestry, while
some have adamic ancestry.
I stuffed as much evidence and rationale as was practical in a 382
page book. If I could have publish a three volume set, and could get
everyone to read it, this method of apology would be as commonly
accepted by Christians today as Big Bang cosmology is accepted by
astronomers (in my humble opinion).
>But the problem with all this, which I still don't believe Dick and
>Mike have really adequately answered, is that the scripture seems
>pretty clear that Adam is head, not only covenantally but also
>biologically, of the whole human race--I don't find the attempts to
>see two different human creation accounts in Genesis 1 and 2 to be
>convincing and a significant reconstruction of Biblical theology
>would have to follow.
As with flu symptoms, if all we focused on was a low grade
temperature, or a runny nose, then a variety of possibilities might
fit. If the focus is on Adam alone, it may not eliminate all the
possible explanations. Instead, view all of Genesis 1-11 as a
continuum of which Adam is an integral part. It fits in a historical
setting (if you know the history).
Just for openers, notice that the writer gave us the setting for the
garden of Eden in the four rivers. Carol Hill did a nice article
published in PSCF.
So starting with Gen.2:10-14, we should be focused on southern
Mesopotamia. All the principle cities have been excavated in that
region. Not far from the junction of the four rivers is the oldest
city, Eridu, dated to 4800 BC. And in Sumerian writings, Eridu is
where it began with the first king, Alulim. Eridu is home to Adapa
who has some of the earmarks of Adam. Graveyards are littered with
corpses in the entire region bearing the name "Adamu," apparently
named after somebody famous. The second king in the Assyrian king
list is "Adamu."
Cain builds Enoch, later corrupted to Erech, the Sumerian Uruk. Noah
(Ziusudra) was king at Shuruppak, and Terah (Abraham's father) lived
in Ur (Gen.11:28). Eridu and Ur are as close as Dallas and Fort
Worth. Roughly three thousand years of history, all contained in the
same locale, some information is biblical, some historical - and all
is debatable on this list.
> Glenn, I believe, is zealous to preserve the
>scriptural teaching concerning the unity of the hunan race in Adam
>more than the other harmonizing that others are attempting. He cites
>much evidence for human-like activity that is much more ancient than
>the historical record of the ANE; he also notes the recent
>out-of-Africa vs. the multiregional debates and the impact they have
>on our views here. Either view puts a last common ancestor of all
>humans long before ANE, where Dick and Mike have placed Adam. The
>recent out-of-Africa view seems a bit more palatable, although even
>here we're talking 100,000 to 200,000 years--still quite far removed
>from ANE civilization. If you accept the multi-regional view, then
>we're talking 1-2 million years ago and maybe more.
Not any of it part of biblical history, in my estimation.
>While Glenn seems to be open to a local flood (his Mediterranean
>flood is local) he wants a more cataclysmic event than appears to be
>recorded in the ANE historical records and physical geographical
>records for this time period.
>Now, for Jim Eisele: it is this state of affairs that has led some
>such as Paul Seely to the accomodationist perspective. They conclude
>that it is simply not possible to have a satisfactory solution to
>these problems and thus the creation of Adam account is God's
>revealing his creative work in terms of the prevailing science of the
>day. I struggle with this position as well because I think this move
>tends to lower Biblical authority considerably.
>So what are we to do? What do I do?
What does any Christian do? If we don't have the time or inclination
to look everything up ourself, we can pencil in something that makes
sense, is consistent, takes a high view of Scripture, and has data
and evidence to support it. We can look up some of the references.
I have the Library of Congress and Virginia Theological Seminary
within 30 minutes drive. There is more stuff out there that confirms
my method of apology that wasn't there six years ago, and some stuff
I missed at the time.
Earlier you stated, "the scripture seems pretty clear that Adam is
head, not only covenantally but also biologically, of the whole human
I believe the opposite. The Israelites were well aware they were not
alone in the world, that Adam was their first patriarch, and at least
some gentiles came from elsewhere. The Genesis 6:4 "Nephilim" a case
in point. But I believe this is reflected throughout the OT. The
following may come as repetition to some, but I think it is important.
The biggest problem is that translators sometimes ignore sound
hermeneutics when it doesnít fit their foregone conclusions. Psalm
49:1-2 is a case in point: "Hear this all ye people; give ear all ye
inhabitants of the world: both low and high, rich and poor,
together." The two Hebrew words bene 'adam, translated "low" in the
second verse, are literally - "sons of Adam!"
What comes to us as "high" is the Hebrew bene 'ish. 'Ish is a more
general term meaning "man," "male," "human being," or "mankind."
Instead of "low and high," which bear no semblance of meaning from
the original Hebrew, either "sons of Adam and sons of man," or
"Adamite and Non-Adamite" would have been literal translations,
faithful to the Hebrew text.
Ah, but who could the sons of man be who are not sons of Adam?
Non-Adamites? How could that be possible? So, the translators of
the authorized version avoided certain controversy by substituting
the benign "low and high," virtual synonyms for "poor" and "rich."
Modern translators of newer versions have simply followed along.
So now correcting for the original Hebrew: "Hear this all ye people;
give ear all ye inhabitants of the world: both sons of Adam and sons
of man, rich and poor, together." Who are rich? Sons of Adam. Who
are poor? Sons of man. Together they comprise "all the inhabitants
of the world."
This technique of substituting words of convenience where 'adam and
'ish are contained in the same sentence is used also in Psalm 62:9,
where we do not read, "Surely vanity are the sons of Adam, a lie are
the sons of man ..." Instead we read, "Surely men of low degree are
vanity, and men of high degree are a lie ..."
In Isaiah 2:9, do we see the Adamite bow down, and the Non-Adamite
humble himself? No, we see instead, "And the mean man ('adam) boweth
down, and the great man ('ish) humbleth himself ..."
This is a quote from Dominick MíCausland:
ěThe words "Adam" and "ish" are clearly different in meaning;
and to use them
indiscriminately, as having the same signification, tends
obviously to obscure the
true import and significance of the Scripture text. Had the
translation been literal,
the sense of the sacred record would have been more readily
discovered, and the
reader would recognize at a glance, that the history which he
has conceived to be
a history of the origin of all mankind, is simply a record of
the creation of "the Adam,"
the last, and not the first of created men, and a history of
his lineal descendants.î
Psalm 8:4 is another case in point: "What is man, that thou art
mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?" How are
men different from sons of men? Why the redundancy? Aren't all men
sons of men? Yes, but not all men are sons of Adam! God is
"mindful" of "man" ('ish), but it is the sons of Adam ('adam) that He
visits." This verse reflects the special relationship Israel enjoyed.
In Psalm 80:17, "Let thy hand be upon the man ['ish] of thy right
hand, upon the son of Adam [it should read] whom thou madest strong
for thyself." See what a clarification it makes in Numbers 23:19:
"God is not a man [generic man], that He should lie; neither the son
of man [Adam!], that He should repent ..." All men are capable of
lying, only sons of Adam repent and receive forgiveness.
The prophet Jeremiah likens the fall of Babylon to the destruction of
Sodom and Gomorrah. By way of translation, in one sentence he
appears to say the same thing twice: "... so shall no man abide
there, neither doth any son of man dwell therein" (Jer. 50:40). Here
again 'ish and 'adam are both translated "man." Had the translators
let 'adam be "Adam" instead of "man" we would know that neither
Adamites nor Non-Adamites live there.
>This may seem like an apologetic disaster, but I would
>suggest that apologetics and evangelism doesn't start with Genesis,
>but with the cross and the empty tomb.
And I would start with Genesis, because in my Bible at least, Genesis
comes first. And in the New Testament, Adam is mentioned in the same
breath as One who sacrificed on the cross and emptied the tomb.
Yours in Christ,
Dick Fischer - The Origins Solution - www.orisol.com
"The answer we should have known about 150 years ago"
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