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

From: David Opderbeck <dopderbeck@gmail.com>
Date: Tue Sep 02 2008 - 17:01:29 EDT

Bernie said: A "fall" implies
> going from something better to something worse. I think it is the opposite-
> we arose from the animal nature and after being born-again we can rise to a
> higher place.

I respond: Bernie, I think you need to be a bit careful here
theologically. This sounds a bit Pelagian -- that there is some
innate human capacity to improve. The overall arc of scripture, it
seems to me, is that human beings cannot ultimately improve
themselves, and that something has "gone wrong" in human history.
Christ didn't die on the cross to offer the culmination of an
evolutionary process -- he died to redeem us from slavery to sin,
which is both a personal and a primordial slavery.

On Tue, Sep 2, 2008 at 4:38 PM, Dehler, Bernie <bernie.dehler@intel.com> wrote:
> Bethany said:
> "I don't think there was an Adam, Eve, or Cain, and I think the fall
> happened gradually over generations. But that is just me."
>
>
>
> Hi Bethany-
>
>
>
> How do you think this "fall" happened over generations? A "fall" implies
> going from something better to something worse. I think it is the opposite-
> we arose from the animal nature and after being born-again we can rise to a
> higher place. It's like the last chapter in "Mere Christianity" has it...
> kind of poetic… using evolution for a framework of advancement and gaining
> the Spirit as an evolutionary step.
>
>
>
> …Bernie
>
>
>
> ________________________________
>
> From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu] On
> Behalf Of Bethany Sollereder
> Sent: Tuesday, September 02, 2008 10:50 AM
> To: George Cooper
> Cc: asa@calvin.edu
> Subject: Re: [asa] biological evolution and a literal Adam- logically
> inconsistent?
>
>
>
> George,
>
> I agree that the problems with MtDNA is an issue. I don't ascribe to that
> model, I simply was saying it is something people in the field have been
> proposing as a solution. I still think it tries to find too much historical
> concordism in the Biblical and scientific records.
>
> I don't think there was an Adam, Eve, or Cain, and I think the fall happened
> gradually over generations. But that is just me.
>
> Bethany
>
> On Tue, Sep 2, 2008 at 10:28 AM, George Cooper <georgecooper@sbcglobal.net>
> wrote:
>
> Bethany,
>
>
>
> It is my understanding that MtDNA will not point likely point to an ultimate
> first mother (ie Eve) but only to an "Eve" down a given MtDNA trail.
> Confidence in this dating system seems fairly high. However, I get the
> impression that the Y-chromosome method of dating is much less reliable. I
> am especially weak in micorbiology, so, hopefully, someone here will address
> this issue.
>
>
>
> Since it is likely, IMO, that Cain married a Pre-Adamite woman, then their
> vast lineage makes no difference to the Biblical account. Cain's great,
> great….grandmother could have been out of Africa without any consequence.
> This is more problematic in the Y-chromosome case since we should be
> descendents of Cain.
>
>
>
> Another possibility that allows the literal view is that a "living soul"
> sprung forth in all new humans after the inaugural event of man's soul –
> Adam from "dust". This seems a bit too ad-hoc even for me, but I won't rule
> it out just yet.
>
>
>
>
>
> David O said: The bigger problem for the recent representative model in my
> mind is whether those aboriginal peoples, not to mention the widespread
> neolithic cultures of the west and near east, were "human" prior to Adam.
> Clearly, the unity of the human race -- the fact that every human being has
> a unique dignity and responsibility precisely in virtue of being human -- is
> fundamental to Biblical anthropology.
>
>
>
> This is an important issue since these earlier races exhibited spiritual
> behavior. If the Aborigines (and other hunter-gatherers such as in New
> Guinea) are essentially the same today as they were 15,000 years ago, then
> it is problematic to give them a spiritual existence out of the blue 6000
> years ago, though this could have been the case. A better explanation
> seems to me to be that the big migration from Africa was of mankind that
> already had "living souls", so Adam would have had to predate this. This
> does not match Dick's point that there is no evidence for any settlements in
> S. Mesopotamia prior to 4800 BC. But, this does not necessarily mean
> something much, much older will be found at much greater depths. An Ur
> city limits sign would be a nice discovery worth dating. J
>
>
>
> George "Coope"
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu] On
> Behalf Of Bethany Sollereder
> Sent: Tuesday, September 02, 2008 9:51 AM
> To: David Opderbeck
> Cc: Merv; asa@calvin.edu
>
> Subject: Re: [asa] biological evolution and a literal Adam- logically
> inconsistent?
>
>
>
> David,
>
> Certainly it seems like a lot of people are accepting the federal headship
> model, which is a step forward from YEC, but still I think a misstep. Too
> much concordism, not enough science. And as George said above, there are
> good reasons to at least question the purpose and 'accuracy' of the
> genealogies.
> Another way around it is to find a mitochondrial Eve or a Y chromosome
> Adam. I guess you can trace back mitochondrial DNA through women, back to
> "one" about 150,000 years ago. The issue is that a similar process with men
> and the Y chromosome only goes back about 50,000 years. So unless your
> biological Adam and Eve lived 100,000 years apart, you end up with a bit of
> a problem.
>
> Bethany
>
> On Tue, Sep 2, 2008 at 7:19 AM, David Opderbeck <dopderbeck@gmail.com>
> wrote:
>
> So in your educational / seminary travels, are evangelical / orthodox
> protestant scholars starting to accept these various models as alternatives
> that preserve essential orthodoxy?
>
>
>
>

-- 
David W. Opderbeck
Associate Professor of Law
Seton Hall University Law School
Gibbons Institute of Law, Science & Technology
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Received on Tue Sep 2 17:02:04 2008

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