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

From: David Opderbeck <dopderbeck@gmail.com>
Date: Sat Sep 06 2008 - 16:24:49 EDT

Not defending La Peyrere, but I don't see how "no Adam" really helps with
the "pre Adamite" problem. You still have to explain what spiritual status,
if any, the pre-homo-sapiens-sapiens hominds had. Was homo erecuts /
habilis / heidelbergensis / neanderthalis in the image of God? Did they
"sin?" How many millions of years back into hominid evolution do the imago
and original sin go? It seems to me these questions are the same regardless
of whether there was an actual guy named "Adam" somewhere in the chain -- in
fact, maybe it's even a bigger problem.

On Sat, Sep 6, 2008 at 1:56 PM, Bethany Sollereder <bsollereder@gmail.com>wrote:

> Coope,
>
> Isaac La Peyrere (in the second half 17th century) developed the idea of
> Pre-Adamites in order to deal with the two different creation accounts in
> Gen 1 & 2. His idea was that Ch. 1 dealt with humans in general, and Ch. 2
> dealt with the Jews. Thus, other problems like where Cain's wife came from
> are solved, how come the Chinese seem to have such a long unbroken history
> etc.
>
> There are several problems: First, what happened to these pre-Adamites? or
> did they simply 'become human' along the way? Second, this approach still
> ignores the purpose and genre of the chapters as trying to explain God and
> origins. Third, it is anachronistic - still trying to shove modern science
> into the text. Fourth, you'd still need humanity to be fanning out of the
> middle-east instead of Africa.
>
> Bethany
>
>
> On Sat, Sep 6, 2008 at 10:30 AM, George Cooper <georgecooper@sbcglobal.net
> > wrote:
>
>> Gordon said: In fact, one might ask how Adam was supposed to understand
>> what it meant to die the day he ate from the tree if he hadn't seen
>> something that was dead.
>>
>> Indeed, how would Adam suddenly coming from dust understand anything at
>> all? What would be necessary, I assume, is a set of specific
>> neurological patterns that would allow assimilation of the that which is
>> being observed, as well as, a logic center that was capable of assigningmeaning to these categorized sensory
>> signals? If such patterns existed already that were well adapted to the
>> environment in dealing with reality, then, perhaps, they could be the basis
>> for the pattern placed into our instant Adam and Eve. This is almost
>> identical to having molecular patterns (eg DNA) already in existence to
>> create a physical body, albeit greater care and logical arrangement would
>> seem necessary for creating a mind that could understand things. The
>> idea of Pre-Adamites serving this purpose for a living soul human to emerge
>> by God's own deliberate hand does make some sense. Adam may not have had
>> images in his mind of actual death "experiences" but he may have understood death
>> to mean something like the opposite of living, which he was now
>> experiencing.
>>
>> I am curious of everyone's opinion of whether or not pre-Adamaites would,
>> essentially, eliminate inconsistency between evolution and a literal
>> Adam?
>>
>> "Coope"
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu<asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu>]
>> On Behalf Of gordon brown
>> Sent: Friday, September 05, 2008 11:22 AM
>> To: asa@calvin.edu
>> Subject: Re: [asa] (fall) biological evolution and a literal Adam-
>> logically inconsistent?
>>
>> Bethany,
>>
>> The "no sickness, no tears, no pain, no death" that conflicts with science
>>
>>
>> is an interpretation of Genesis, not what it actually says. In fact, one
>>
>> might ask how Adam was supposed to understand what it meant to die the day
>>
>>
>> he ate from the tree if he hadn't seen something that was dead. The Garden
>>
>>
>> required watering and a human gardener. The really unusual thing in the
>>
>> Garden was the tree of life. It isn't until near the end of Chapter 3 that
>>
>>
>> we get even a clue as to what it was for. I think that that is where the
>>
>> question of literal interpretation and agreement or disagreement with
>>
>> science is most readily raised.
>>
>> Revelation builds on themes from the Old Testament. Just as Genesis almost
>>
>>
>> from the beginning introduces the Garden of Eden, Revelation almost at the
>>
>>
>> end describes a new Garden of Eden. However it is far more than a
>>
>> recycling. In the new Garden or city there is no sun, no moon, and no
>>
>> night. This is seen as being much better than the old Garden.
>>
>> Gordon Brown (ASA member)
>>
>> On Fri, 5 Sep 2008, Bethany Sollereder wrote:
>>
>> > Gordon,
>>
>> >
>>
>> > Actually, if you look in the LXX, Gen 2:8 uses the word paradise (*
>>
>> > paradeison*) to describe the garden of Eden. But the word just means an
>>
>> > idyllic place or state - in fact when I just looked it up, paradise was
>>
>> > defined as "the abode of Adam and Eve before the Fall in the biblical
>>
>> > account of the creation: the Garden of Eden". It was a place where the
>>
>> > forces of chaos had been dealt with by the acts of creation. Humans had
>> a
>>
>> > task, but it was one they were well able to do. They were in need of
>> nothing
>>
>> > - there was no sickness, no tears, no pain, no death. And to top it all
>>
>> > off, God walked in the garden with them.
>>
>> > In fact, take a look at the late chapters of Revelations and we see a
>>
>> > recycling of many of the same things, only it is a garden-city in Rev,
>> not
>>
>> > just a garden.
>>
>> >
>>
>> > Hope this helps.
>>
>> >
>>
>> > Bethany
>>
>> >
>>
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>>
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>>
>
>

-- 
David W. Opderbeck
Associate Professor of Law
Seton Hall University Law School
Gibbons Institute of Law, Science & Technology
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Received on Sat Sep 6 16:25:14 2008

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