Re: [asa] biological evolution and a literal Adam- logically inconsistent?

From: Bethany Sollereder <>
Date: Tue Sep 02 2008 - 01:09:14 EDT

Hi David,

For the fall, I think it would have happened over many generations, as
humans became aware of who God was and what their responsibility to him was,
and as the image of God was formed with them, gradually within the whole
population. I don't like the idea of a punctiliar fall, partially because
requiring it involves asking something of the text which I don't think it
has: historical and scientific concordism.

As for how other people think about it, some go to a "federal headship"
model like Denis Alexander. He thinks that about 6-7000 years ago a couple
in the middle east were made "Adam and Eve" through an intervention of God,
and they subsequently fell and all humanity fell with them. I feel a little
awkward about that because I think it is entirely unfair to the Aboriginals
known to be in Australia at that time, or to the Chinese in Asia, because
this would say that they were not human, or say that they suddenly began to
sin due to the sin of the A&E in the middle east.

Another approach is saying humanity evolved, then in the next breathe saying
A&E were created from dust in a moment also, and then trying to pin the fall
of the rest of humanity on their shoulders. This encounters the same
problem as above.

A final approach might be to say something along the lines of "there was no
historical fall, the story simply teaches us that every person individually
falls". Or something along the lines of society being fallen, and therefore
perfect human beings born into imperfect societies are doomed to fall. I
happen to not like this one because I don't think any child has a chance of
growing up sinless - there is something inherently corrupt about humanity
that is not simply a product of societal influence.

Ooh, this is getting long. Sorry. #2...
I don't think it matters which creation story they were reflecting on (1 or
2)... most likely they would have told you both in a row. As for the
contradictions, in a pre-modern mind, the "contradictions" were not mutually
exclusive, they simply told different things about who God was and how he
related to the world. Also keep in mind, they were all "the man on the
street" in a sense. With our specialization of knowledge, there is a lot
that a person could know that no one else has a clue about. But in the
context of tribal knowledge, and the myth of peoples, the job of those "in
the know" was to repeat it time and time again to those "out of the loop"
people... also keep in mind that I said "ancient Hebrew", and not "a Hebrew
XXXX years ago" to avoid the issue of exactly when they would have known
it. From its earliest time, until apparently Paul, they took A&E to be
real, true, historical figures.

Finally, the Faraday course was amazing. There are many lectures online at
their website <>including
several of the lectures from the course. Take some time and
listen, they are well worth it.


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Received on Tue Sep 2 01:10:06 2008

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