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

From: David Opderbeck <dopderbeck@gmail.com>
Date: Fri Sep 05 2008 - 16:41:34 EDT

Right. But the example is intended to illustrate a type of literature that
is both "figurative" and "literal." It doesn't have to be either-or.

On Fri, Sep 5, 2008 at 2:35 PM, Dehler, Bernie <bernie.dehler@intel.com>wrote:

> David- in your example, both the story and real life had two real
> people. In the case of Adam, some who accept evolution don't think Adam was
> a historical figure, which would mean the "fall of man" never happened,
> since there was no perfect man (from which to fall) to begin with.
>
>
>
> …Bernie
>
>
> ------------------------------
>
> *From:* asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu] *On
> Behalf Of *David Opderbeck
> *Sent:* Friday, September 05, 2008 10:13 AM
> *To:* Bethany Sollereder
> *Cc:* gordon brown; asa@calvin.edu
> *Subject:* Re: [asa] (fall) biological evolution and a literal Adam-
> logically inconsistent?
>
>
>
> I'm not sure what you're saying now: "there was a real human fall" and
> "[n]ot taking the fall literally." Maybe we are talking past each other a
> little.
>
>
>
> When I hear "taking the fall literally," to me that means "there was a real
> human fall": the fall "happened" in a discrete period of time in human
> history, and is not merely an allegory of every person's struggle with guilt
> and sin. To me, "taking the fall literally" doesn't mean all of the
> trappings of Milton's Paradise Lost, or even necessarily a literal, physical
> "garden." The story we are given may not be "literal," but there is a real,
> discrete, historical event(s) underlying the story. It seems to me a
> heremenuetical question, but not a theological problem, to argue that the
> literary form of the story is not "literal" if there are underlying "real"
> events.
>
>
>
> However, if there was a "real human fall," that means there was a "real
> human pre-fallen condition." The "garden," literary device though it may
> be, describes / represents a real state of shalom, and, I think, a real
> potential for the spread of shalom beyond the "garden" and throughout the
> creation over which "Adam" was given dominion. In my view, it's important
> to Biblical theology that the "garden" also reflect something real --
> otherwise I wonder, "what's the point -- not just of this story but of the
> whole Story?"
>
>
>
> Maybe this will illustrate where I'm coming from:
>
>
>
> "The two lovers spread tables before them and feasted on the delights they
> had prepared. They lacked nothing and were filled with songs from morning
> until night. They saw visions of the days before them, of children as
> numerous as the sands, of adventures and sunsets and glories beyond
> imagining.
>
>
>
> And the woman said to the man, 'eat and be satisfied with all of the fruits
> I have prepared for you, but vow that you will not eat the fruit of any
> other woman.' And the man made this vow.
>
>
>
> But the man was tempted by the fruit of another. And the woman searched
> for him, and found him at another's table, and shut up the door to her
> house, and shut him out. The man wept bitterly, and hid his face from the
> woman, and fled to the ends of the earth.
>
>
>
> Yet the woman loved the man. So she called out to him, 'return to me, O
> man, and I will forgive your transgression, and restore you to myself. We
> will put away our tears, and our children shall be as numerous as the sands,
> and we shall enjoy adventures and sunsets and glories beyond imagining.'"
>
>
>
> Or, I could say, "two people got married. They enjoyed a peaceful
> relationship until the man had an affair. But they reconciled and enjoy a
> peaceful relationship once again." & Technology
>

-- 
David W. Opderbeck
Associate Professor of Law
Seton Hall University Law School
Gibbons Institute of Law, Science & Technology
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Received on Fri Sep 5 16:42:20 2008

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