Adam and the Genome: Some Thoughts from Scot McKnight

(system) #1
Science provoked me and prodded me and pushed me to give more serious attention to the Bible.
This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

(Albert Leo) #2

At one point I observe that NT Wright’s very creative suggestion – Adam and Eve may have been elected out of the many (hominins) who were available, and that they in some sense represented all of humanity – sounded to me a bit concordist. - See more at:
@Scot McKnight
Scot, I addressed this point in a post 4/4 responding to Denis Alexander’s thoughts on your book, and I would very much like your input, for it deals directly with what I have emphasized in your quotation above. I postulated that “Adam & Eve” were the first Homo sapiens to have the neuro-circuitry of their brain ‘programmed’ into Mind. [Mechanism currently unknown, but not likely to remain so for long; i.e. it will not remain a God of the Gaps for long.] Thus it was 'not in some sense’ that they represented all of humanity, they were the first humans, One aspect of this Gift of Mind was the ability to invent language through which the first recipient(s) could pass the gift to all the other Homo sapiens existing at that time–perhaps a million individuals. This spread of humankind was not slow, as the passing of genes from one generation to the next would be. It could pass male-to-male, female-to-female, young -to-old. It was more like an atomic pile going critical. This rapid expansion of human culture has some support from anthropologists, and has been referred to as the Great Leap Forward. In your book, Dennis gives an excellent presentation of the evidence that evolution produced Homo sapiens–some 150,000 years before the GLF. Scientists should be eagerly searching for the biological evidence for the mechanism God used to accomplish this finishing touch: programming Brain -> Mind.

In my own mind, I have used this hypothesis to bring into question the concept of Original Sin, and I fully realize that would NOT be acceptable to either evangelical Christians nor the Catholic Church. Nonetheless, I think the concept deserves consideration.
Al Leo

(Richard Wright) #3

I’m wondering on what basis does Scot perceive Genesis 1:26-7 as referring specifically to Adam and Eve? There are several references to Genesis 1-2, 1-3 or even 1-11, as in the following from the article, “This approach to Genesis 1-3 deserves more attention.”

(Roger A. Sawtelle) #4

(1) if this is the case, then this debate in North America is a context-specific debate and may well be as much derived from our history (the fundamentalist-modernist debate of the 20th Century) and may not be as profoundly orthodox as many think, - See more at:


What Scott is referring to here seems to be the real source of the problem at least with the vast majority of YEC. The question which I have raised before is: Why does not BioLogos address the serious theological issue of the nature of the Biblical revelation, rather than the science of evolution which is secondary to most evangelicals.


Good question Rodger. It could be that many evangelicals can accept evolution but have to affirm Biblical inerrancy or lose their jobs. Thus any discussion of inspiration would be problematic.

(Roger A. Sawtelle) #6


Thank you for your insight.

I have sympathy with those caught in this bind, however we, meaning Christians, need to find good alternative to inerrancy, which is both theologically sound and biblically correct.

How can we do this if we don’t even talk about it?

This is no way to be the Church, People of Faith, if we are bound by fear.