Re: The Fall

From: David Bradford <david.bradford1@which.net>
Date: Thu Sep 15 2005 - 15:54:14 EDT

amblema, Rich et al
This is all very well if we may assume that everything to which Genesis Ch.1-3 refers is related to the world we now inhabit. And I fully understand why the scientific community will look first for a rational, scientific explanation. But how then do we reconcile six days of creation with the geological record; or the absence of detectable cherubim and a flaming sword guarding the entrance to Eden. Doesn't anyone find it even slightly embarassing that our rational understanding of the way our world works is unable to reconcile these fundamental aspects of scripture? Surely any realistic explanation ought to be able to encompass all the important difficulties in a single sweep. So here is a possibility, which I offer only as a new focal point for debate:
  a.. God creates the human spirit that dwells in a blissful, timeless realm quite separate from our present experience, subject to certain simple rules such as not to eat of the 'tree of knowledge' of good and evil..
  b.. In parallel, unbeknown to the first human souls, the physical world takes shape and, over billions of years, the earth and all its flesh of life come into being, culminating in a soulless homo erectus.
  c.. Original sin takes place in the Garden, resulting in man's expulsion. But the immortal spirit form of man is not suited to the physical world, so God places the essence of the man and woman into the pre-formed bodies of the naked apes.
Straight away, we have explanations for a number of biblical passages that have previously been beyond our understanding. To begin with, there is Gen 3:21 Unto Adam also and to his wife did the Lord God make coats of skins, and clothed them. The coats of skin are none other than the hominid bodies. It follows immediately that a womans pain in childbirth shall be greatly multiplied, and that man is condemned to eat only through toil among thorns and thistles.

Seen from our present-worldly perspective, maybe this did happen at or around 4004 BC as YECs would have us believe, also allowing for the physical world to have pre-existed for 13-odd billion years. Doesn't this hypothesis overcome the major difficulties, while introducing only relatively minor ones? But I reserve my position on whether descriptions in Genesis of the next few generations of man are real or parable.

Regards
David
  ----- Original Message -----
  From: RFaussette@aol.com
  To: amblema@bama.ua.edu ; asa@calvin.edu
  Sent: Thursday, September 15, 2005 6:15 PM
  Subject: Re: The Fall

  In a message dated 9/15/2005 12:54:17 PM Eastern Standard Time, amblema@bama.ua.edu writes:
    God created humans through an evolutionary process. At some point He
    endows a pair of hominids, who will be the ancestors of humans, with
    reason, self-awareness, etc. and gives them some directions. They
    disobey, and their descendants also inherit the consequences of their
    disobedience.

    God created humans through an evolutionary process. At some point He
    endows a pair of hominids, representatives out of an existing
    population, with reason, self-awareness, etc. and gives them some
    directions. They disobey, and all humans (including their
    contemporaries and the descendants thereof) have a correspondingly
    fallen nature.
  I agree with this analysis.
  See my paper: True Religion, Biblical Symbols from a Darwinian Perspective

  rich faussette
Received on Thu Sep 15 15:58:45 2005

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